Put the icing on your summer cake with some great comedy! -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
As August comes to a close and fall starts to move in, celebrate the changing seasons with lots of laughter! Here are some recommendations for your funny bones...
This Sunday, September 25th at 7pm, I am headlining the Empire Tonight show New York Comedy Club (the first place I ever saw live comedy by the way) to prep for my trip to Scotland. Use the code word "gandalf" for $5 promo tix! It will be fun! I will be weird!
Some phrases that make my pending ulcer bubble. -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
1) You Should Smile: It seems that randomly men will jump off a corner while you are trying to get somewhere, perhaps replaying a conversation in your head or figuring out some life situation, to let you know that you should be smiling. I know that this is not meant to be rude but all I can hear is: "Hey lady, it looks like you are thinking, and I find that gross. I don't care if you are coming up with the solution to end child hunger or running late to a World Summit meeting, you should be trying to be more attractive for other people. Know your place."
Happy First of August Crazytowners! In celebration of summer come and comedy! -By Leah Bonnema
Congratulations to Ophira Einsenberg who's book "Screw Everyone: How I Slept My Way To Monogamy" is being optioned for a movie! Ophira is one of my favorite New York City stand up comics. She is smart, hilarious,a genuine person who is not an asshole. I am so excited for her I can't tell you (although I am telling you). Please check out Ophira's book (buy it, buy it), listen to her on NPR's Ask Me Another(she is the host) and go see her live! Her is a little tidbit to wet your proverbial whistles:
Orange is the New Black is the new hope for interesting female charecters. -By Leah Bonnema
If you've been Crazytowning with me for a while you may have read about my love of scifi movies and how, specifically, I feel the genre has some of the best roles for women. In scifi, female characters are allowed to be flawed, unlikable even, they are action driven and have intentions that involve things other than landing a man, being pretty and waiting to be picked for something.
"I threw my pie for you"
AND If you've followed my Netflix Streaming In My Pants blogs (which I write with the goal of hoping to help restore movie order to the nonsensical queues) you know that I don't often watch television shows. It's not that I don't like them, it's that I don't like to be left hanging. I get to do that everyday in my non TV watching life. I want my shit wrapped up in under two hours so I can carry on soldier.
How might I derail myself?! Let me count the ways to SELF SABOTAGE... -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
I'm always amazed, no matter how often it happens, how the hurdles I face on stage are microcosms of my struggles off stage. This seems obvious. But I reserve the right to be amazed by the obvious.
The great part of having to deal with a bad habit, for example self sabotaging, live on stage, is that it becomes very clear, very quickly, because people are watching and within seconds you can see and feel the response. It's like life lesson mini courses being blared through speakers directly into your head: an immediate, crystal clear, huge smack in the face.
I assume many, if not most, if not all, people self sabotage in one way or another. That's why we have all these wonderful phrases for it: Cutting off your nose to spite your face, shooting yourself in the foot, being your own worst enemy, c&%k blocking yourself, building your own jail, not helping your cause, you create your own hell, you are your worst enemy, etc.
I have a few "Leah, you always do this, pull back now, now, uh, too late" moves. One of my all time favorites is focusing my energy in the wrong place. A hundred great things could be happening and I'll be obsessing about the one thing I can't control or isn't going the way I want it to and making myself feel absolutely horrible about it. The same thing happens at a show, a thousand people can be laughing and I will place my entire self worth on the one who isn't.
This past week a new event occurred, I DID NOT self sabotage (but Sweet Yeezus how I wanted to).
I was having a really good set (and I would tell you if I wasn't, I tank sometimes, I feel like I really connect sometimes, and sometimes it's ehhhh fine just doing my job) but this night was a great show. I was having fun with it, everyone was laughing and clapping except for this couple to my right. They weren't even directly in my vision. I of course could hear them but I can hear everybody. And they weren't even loud enough to disrupt others (if that had been the case they would have needed to be dealt with) so no one noticed but me.
I wanted to focus on those two people so badly that I could feel myself being physically pulled by it as a civil war broke out inside my brain. My mouth and body continued on with the story I was telling while my mind split into two camps and argued pros and cons of addressing these two douchenozzles.
Leah 1: Shut them down. They are why this generation is such a disaster. So rude. So entitled. Leah 2: The rest of the audience is having a wonderful time. You derailing your entire set to tear them a new asshole only gives them more power. Do your job Bonnema. Let it go. Leah 1: They are sooo rude! Someone needs to tell them what pieces of shit people they are, do it for society! And let nothing go, ever. Leah 2: How's that working out for you? People mostly behave badly because they want attention. So go ahead, give them attention, so they will behave badly again next time. Leah 1: Ugh, I hate this "I can only control my own actions" bullshit... Fine, but we're getting queso after.
I consider it a huge victory that I did not address the two idiots. I did not derail. Instead I stayed the course and felt really good after my set. It's a huge life lesson that I'm continually learning and continually being reminded of, focus on the good stuff. The bad stuff (more often then not) is only as big as we let it be. The choice is ours.
A few suggestions of ways to manage New York City summers (notice I didn't say 'ways to stay cool' because it's never gonna happen) when it's "hotter than a match head" and everything smells like pee. -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
My dad and I always sing 'Summer in the City' by Lovin' Spoonful and I remember him playing it when I was growing up. I always thought it was such a fun song. Until I moved to the city. As a kid in the country you think "Oh his neck is 'getting dirt and gritty' that must be from being outdoors and playing in the yard..." BUT NO! It's because there is actual dirt (and who knows what else) IN THE AIR and it sticks to your skin as you slowly turn into swampland.
I am pretty sure that like whatever hormone women release after labor (this is something I have heard, I'm not going to google it because if it is only rumor it still works for me) that allows them to forget the pain so they are more apt to have another child, my body protects me by forgetting how horrible getting around NYC is every July and August.
Every year, a few days after the humidity has been as unmanageable as my hair, it settles below ground not to clear until fall. I walk down into the subway on the wonderous day, immediately am covered two inches deep in sweat and think to myself "This can't be..." After the shock and awe wears off of how incredibly uncomfortable I am, I remember that this happened last year, and the year before that.
My hair for the next two months
A few survival tips:
-Fabreze trash bags, which seem incredibly too middle class and frivolous, are worth it. Trash heats up like a mofo. Unless you want your apartment to smell like the back alley behind a chinese food restaurant, keep that garbage scented bro.
Train platforms are the devil's playground. The lower down you go, the closer to hell you get. Sometimes I can't take it anymore and I get on the next train that comes, even if it's not mine, just for the few minutes of AC I need to regroup. I suggest staying away from the stations at 34th Street and Times Square, the F stop at 63rd and Lex and the D/E at 7th Ave if at all possible. Is contemplating your mortality worth walking to the next stop? You decide.
This is after 7 seconds waiting for subway
Oxy Pads. The wipes for teenagers with acne. Buy a little tub of them, pop them in your bag and wipe yourself down when you get to your destination. It cleans your skin and it's awesome to see the white pads turn gray with dirt after one swipe of your forearm. Honestly, they are refreshing.
When you get home, resist the urge to sit down because you won't get up. Walk immediately to the shower, stand under freezing water for a few moments and then sit on your AC.
When you are walking down the street and are immediately enveloped in a cloud of the strongest "Sweet Yeezus, what is that smell?!" KEEP WALKING. Power through it. There is some need in us to stop and figure it out, to try and make it go away. To find where all the pee is coming from. Don't. Just walk on.
Do not open the window in your apartment. Sometimes we lose ourselves in this beautiful thought "Maybe I can get some sort of cross breeze going if I open windows at the opposite ends of my home. Maybe if I stand in between them and swing my arms it will create enough of a swirl to get some fresh air!" THERE IS NO FRESH AIR.
I had been keeping the window cracked because I may or may not have guinea pigs (depending on if my landlord is reading this) thinking if would get them some new air. Then one day I shut it and woke up to find huge puddles all over my kitchen that were from the humidity that had finally been caught and shut down now that the window was closed.
I wish you all a lovely summer and lots of clean fresh pairs of cotton underwear!
Happy Fourth of July Crazytowners! In celebration of Independence I wanted to share with you a few fond memories of Fourth of July's past and a few suggestions on how your might want to celebrate the present! -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
I don't have the kind of memory where I recall a detailed order of things. Instead there are pictures and scenes in my head from certain events throughout my life thus far. A Fourth of July holiday that sticks out in my memory is when my father and I went to visit my aunt, uncle and cousins in Texas. One of my clearest recollections was walking into their home and being in complete awe of the miracle of central air, which I had never before experienced.
"Now THAT's some MAGIC!" -Hermione Granger
We went to a baseball game and it was the first large sporting event I'd ever attended. The sun had set and the lights coming up from the field and the cheers rising from the stands were electric and dynamic. We saw a huge fireworks display and I recall sitting near a woman who had a large cobra snake coiled around and around her lady boob. It was all very new and exciting to me! Rick Astley was as hot that summer as the weather in Texas!
Never gonna give YOU up!
A completely different memory, a few years back I had Jury Duty the week previous to the July Fourth holiday. It was my first time getting Jury Duty and I (and apparently I am one of the few people who feel this way) was very much excited to part of the process that although flawed is pretty amazing and unique.
As your Thursday Crazytown resident Stand Up I thought I should write a few more posts solely about what is going on in the world of comedy and highlight some hilarious happenings you may want to check out. -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
I realize that over the past two years of writing for Crazytown I haven't dedicated as many blogs to stand up proportionally to how much of my life is invested in it. When friends come to town and ask "Where should we go out" I have no idea unless they want to see a comedy show. I don't go out to clubs, lounges or trendy restaurants however I can tell you where people are making great jokes. So for the next few weeks I'm going to do a series on comedy that you don't want to miss.
I think I must have loved comedy from the very beginning!
Sometimes we become unhinged even when we know better. And by 'we' I mean 'I' but I'd like to feel better about myself and assume some sort of collective consciousness. -By Leah Bonnema (Stand Up Comic)
I wasn't firing on all cylinders to begin with the other day when I was walking to the subway. There has been construction work going on in my apartment building since the dawn of the century (a week and a half ago). They begin promptly at 730am every morning (including weekends) and as I am someone who works nights and has needed to finish some writing projects during the day in my apartment because I can't bring everything with me to a coffee shop, this has been a little maddening.
Is it a big deal in the grand scheme of life? No. Are these people just doing their job? Yes. But does constant banging right outside my bedroom, kitchen, living room AND bathroom windows when I haven't had a full night's sleep in almost two weeks slowly make me insane? Yes. Let's just say two weeks ago I would have sided with Professor X and now I'd side with Magneto."Because there is no land of tolerance. There is no peace. Not here, or anywhere else."
I had to leave the house for a meeting so I headed out in the early afternoon. I was walking down into the subway; it was a busy time and there were a lot of people around. A man walking towards me made eye contact and yelled: Yo you got some big feet!!!
Spoiler Alert: This next section contains profanity (Mom, I'm giving you a heads up). As any rider of public transit and/or anyone who has been in therapy knows, always ignore crazy. You won't win if you engage. They won't finally see things your way. There will be no "Oh yeah, I get it now" outcome. You will never understand why people act a certain way. It is a waste of energy. So I ignored and kept it moving.