Spring has been devoted to getting a jumpstart on the rest of my year. I’ve registered for Bizarro Con 2017, and started work on our Ultimate Bizarro Showdown/ Wonderland Awards Banquet outfits. I’m really excited for the 10th anniversary of the con, and all the shenanigans sure to ensue! I've been published in the Imperial Youth Review: Vol 3 - The Giant Sized Sex Issue. Both a self-portrait and an article titled From Colleague to Collar are in this beauty. My partner, Michael Allen Rose, has a new book out on Eraserhead Press. Embry: Hard Boiled is a charming story with some gravitas weaved into a noir about a chicken and an egg. To tide me over, and give me that booster shot of weird I so desperately crave, Michael and I are hosting the 2nd Annual S+M Salon, to coincide with Printers Row Lit Fest. We’re hosting bizarros from across the nation, while we represent several different presses within the genre at the Bizarro Writers Association table. If you’re in Chicago, come on down to pick up some strange fiction June 10-11th. It’s like sriracha for your imagination!
Bim Bam Boom Burlesque invaded Temperance Brewery in Evanston, IL last month. We kicked up our heels at this fabulous watering hole, and I simply adore the energy in the room. The patrons are peaches, the staff is sublime, and my cast mates really know how to bring the bump’n’grind. It had been a hot minute since I’d performed my Haute Chocolat act, and I polished up an oldie - Victory Bombshell - until it shone like new. I can’t wait for Saturday, when I get to do it all again! Come on out and see me strut like a Gangster Moll and bring a little Serenity to the scene.
If you want your art with a side of hardcore, I’ve got you covered there, too. My least publicized but most salacious outlet has been AmateurPorn. It is absolutely the cutest clip site on the internet. (Look at our mascot, the Pornicorn, and tell me that’s not fact.) I love DIY aesthetics. Anyone who’s met me knows how important self-directed erotica is to me. I am having a blast interacting with fans, making my own catalogue of fetish videos, and filming built-to-order (BTO) requests for custom clips. Add that to the edit queue I've got going for GodsGirls, and I'm one happy little smut peddler.
Not all my filming over the last couple of months has been NSFW. I joined the crew of The World of the Weird Monster Show for a morning news segment on WGN. The guest was Josh McDermitt, perhaps better known as Eugene from The Walking Dead. It was such a pleasure to meet him. Josh was exceptionally kind and gracious to our little band of zombies and characters. I’ve had the opportunity to meet a lot of celebrities with the show over the years, and he easily tops the list for most genuine. His flight was delayed, came straight to the studio after being up who-knows-how-many hours, and in my opinion had every reason to be cranky --- but wasn’t at all! He took the time to meet with each of us, made a point of giving each of us a hug, and taking as many pictures as we liked! While I’m not a morning person by any stretch, I’ll jump at the opportunity to spend time at WGN. Thanks to Jeff Hoover and Chad Byers for making ungodly hours fun.
Every now and again I get behind the lens. The latest and greatest project I’m lending a hand to is Review Me Please, a new webshow on YouTube. Michael and PJ play dysfunctional roommates with a record subscription called Vinyl Me Please, unboxing and reviewing the records, art, and cocktails that come in the mail. Their first episode, Breaking Atoms, is up now. Watch, like, subscribe, and share with whomever in your life likes a little comedy, a splash of booze, pretty vinyl, and music across all genres.
While we’re on the subject of really great music, I’d be remiss not to mention the shows I’ve been spotted at in the last few weeks. WORM (the World Organization of the Righteous Movement) had a release party for their newest album: The Unconquerable. The album is fantastic! You can tell it was a labor of love, with a wonderful attention to detail. I’m so proud to call the band my friends, and love what they do. In their Now I’m Nothing formation, I’m happy to jump up on stage with them for Closer or thrash around in the front the whole show. I have the utmost admiration of pole artists, and watching them with a live band is on another level. Viva la Muerte’s Viva La Pole Show at Reggie's was church. She put on a killer lineup with on point tribute acts. I cannot possibly convey just how it feels when my worlds converge. The overlaps in the social circle venn diagram are strange and beautiful.
Not all glamor, fashion, and fame, though. Sometimes it is just a quiet weekend with Michael’s folks. They brought down rubbermaid bins full of collections we’re either finding room for in the flat, or looking to sell to supplement that artist life. Once the car was loaded up, we enjoyed a walk in the country, introduced his parents to the board game Code Words, and caught up over tea and cookies. It is both the break I needed and the one I wanted in between the excitement of the Chicago Prognosticators Championship League gatherings for Wrestlemania and Payback pay-per-views. I’m not getting into how I felt about the shakeups on screen, as I’m far more invested in the shakeups in the room. Finally, after so long denied, we have our first female belt champ! It isn’t me, but I’m high on girl power. The promos are getting so good, and I can’t wait to see how this frames the next ppv party.
Much the same group battled it out in the laser tag room, in honor of our commissioner's little bro’s 30th birthday. I haven’t been so competitive or winded in so long. Damn, that was fun! On a scale of teacups to whirlyball, I give it a solid ball pit. My rounds were spent between defending the bases and going on suicide missions to rack up as many points on their base or my partner’s pack as possible. My strategy is to drink water before the game while everyone else is enjoying a craft beer. Although, the cheese fondue probably cancelled out my efforts. Internet high fives to my number twin, Scott, for kicking ass even if the red team squeaked out a victory.
On a random weeknight, I got to mainline a new source of artistic energy. I scored an invite to a private soiree up in Evanston, a meeting of like minds and doers. People who don’t just dream up big ideas, but pursue them to their fullest potential. After a tour of the gallery space, workshop, and studio, I had the pleasure of sipping wine and picking the brains of creators of every stripe. I even ran into an acquaintance I’d originally met while playing Trixie & Rocky in a shadowcast of RHPS. Projects are already off the ground from this fantastic evening, and I can’t wait to share them with you! Oh, the pressures of keeping exciting news to myself until the right moment! But... it might just have something to do with a hard-boiled detective in hot water...
That brings me to a knockout show at the Hideout. Spread and Other Rebellious Acts was an evening of hilarious, poignant, touching, and arresting entertainment. Chimera Ensemble's second stage brought raw performances centered around reclaiming identities and sexualities. It was the perfect appetizer for the following night’s date: HUMP. Dan Savage’s film fest makes amateurs stars for a day, curating a traveling showcase that celebrates all bodies in all gender and sexual expressions. After a dinner of tacos, we ran through the storm to the Music Box theater, to see this year’s lineup in a roomful of smut friendly strangers. I was stunned at the number of films in this collection of beautiful people fucking in scenic vacation spots. On the sides of cliffs, on a river, or even just before jumping out of a plane. None of those moved me in the way my top three did, though. Birthday Boss won for best humor, and it is obvious why. It’s Fucking Complicated takes my number two slot, and Fucking Boring rounds out my top three for being completely identifiable. Honorable mentions to A Pervert’s Guide to Loneliness & Art Primo and the Rainbow Dildo. See synopsis of all the films, and get your tickets in remaining cities on their website: https://humpfilmfest.com/ Already come through your town? There’s always next year. Which is what I say annually about submitting something myself. Will next year be the one for me? Only one way to find out! ;)
I leave you this time with a podcast addiction. The Inept Super Villains are all over the map, and stole a corner of my heart to camp out in. Sometimes irreverent and always insightful, the Inept Super Villains discuss the terror of the current administration, comics, corporate greed, celebrities, and it all comes back to titties. Listen along with me.
That's all for now, lovers.