Fired!

May 23, 2013

On Tuesday I was fired from the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. I had worked there since 2001, was there on the morning of 9-11 and was an incredibly dedicated employee. During my employment there, I worked part-time (approximately 30 hours a week) and never received health insurance or even a sick day. Funny because the museum espouses “labor reform.” Still, I came to work, hardly complained and watched the visitors’ center grow into a million-dollar a year “business” (despite it officially being a non-profit.) I read a huge amount of the literature in the store and was therefore great at selling books. This year, specifically, my schedule was switched to Friday-Monday, which meant I never had a weekend. I worked Black Friday, Christmas Eve and New Years Eve, which meant I also didn’t get to see my family. And on the days off I did have, I was too broke to travel to see them.

I wasn’t sure things there could get more Dickensian until this past week, when on a quick work break, I walked to get coffee and tripped on a crack in the Delancey Street sidewalk, smashing my face in. It was literally a bloody mess. (Though thank you Omega 7, it is healing.) And more thankfully, a woman passing by who knew a nearby EMT took me to him. I am still in pain. My lip is still split and my neck suffered minor whiplash, given I swiveled my head around as I fell to avoid breaking all my teeth. Of course I couldn’t go to a doctor (no insurance!) and probably needed stitches but instead suffered the indignity of high school kids calling me “two-face.” (As someone pointed out, at least they read Batman!)

Since I was drenched in blood, I was obviously sent home from work that day. That Friday I was still in pain, but took 4 Advil and tried to come in. The manager, Jes, asked me to work in the basement, even though I was always best on the sales floor, at my register. The girl who took my place was almost half my age. Guess you have to be without facial scars and young to sell books. The next day I came in and was sent home because Jes told me I needed a “mental health day” even though my problem was obviously physical. Then, having finally gotten Sundays off (something they agreed to 2 weeks ago), a manager named Rachel called me on a Sunday and left me a message telling me I needed to take another “mental health day” on Monday. I called her and told her I didn’t need one. She said, “Don’t call me on a Sunday!” I said you just called me on a Sunday.” I felt like Alice in Wonderland trying to play croquet with a flamingo. Nothing made sense.

Then Rachel told me I had a meeting on Tuesday with Mary Kate, yet another manager. I sat down in the conference room on Tuesday with Mary Kate and Barry Roseman (who is the director of operations) and they told me I was “terminated.” I asked Barry why. He said, “I’m not giving you a reason.” I persisted and he told me I needed to leave the conference room because he had an important meeting. I refused. He finally screamed at me, “insubordination!” and stormed out.

And that’s how it went down. It shouldn’t have come as a surprise since the managers (Mary Kate, Jes and Rachel) have fired many other people in the past 2 months – all hard workers with great personality. I guess personality equals being fired there.

Please boycott the Tenement Museum. As I said before, they espouse labor reform while not practicing it. Al Smith is rolling in his grave right now.

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Jackie McAllister

May 5, 2013

Yesterday I went to the memorial for Jackie McAllister: Scotsman, artist, art historian and friend. I wanted to share what I read at the chapel for anyone who knew him and couldn’t join us in the celebration/remembrance of his life. Wrote this at dawn yesterday:

When I was little, my mom, who was born in Bellshill, a little town right outside of Glasgow, which is kinda like the Gary, Indiana of Scotland, used to sing me a song that went like this:

O ye canna shove yer Granny aff a bus,O ye canna shove yer Granny aff a bus,O ye canna shove yer Granny‘Cos she’s yer Mammy’s MammyO ye canna shove yer Granny aff a bus.

Ye can shove yer ither Granny aff a bus.Ye can shove yer ither Granny aff a bus.Ye can shove yer ither Granny‘Cos she’s yer Daddy’s MammyYe can shove yer ither Granny aff a bus.

There were other versus, but you get the idea. For decades, I thought my mother made this song up.

Jump ahead more than 30 years later. Jackie had invited me to an opening at Fisher Landau so I got gussied up, hopped on the train and made my way there. Turns out, I got there on the wrong day. Jackie, who was sitting behind the desk, found this extremely amusing and instead of telling me to come back the next day, gave me a tour of the place. Somewhere in the middle of conversation, we started talking about Scotland and out of the blue, he started singing the “Ye Canne Shove Yer Granny Off a Bus” song. I was in shock. I thought my mom wrote that song. “No!” I said and he told me most Scottish people knew the song. I’d just seen Warhols I didn’t know existed but THIS was the most shocking revelation that day.

Another revelation: Jackie was nice, a good person who was willing to entertain an elf-ear-wearing burnout when he probably had a lot of work to do. And that’s something that can be said about everyone who worked at American Fine Arts where I first met him. I was working for another gallery at the time, was probably 22 and went there to pick up a Mariko Mori bio I think. I was used to being ignored or treated like a freak at most galleries but Colin de Land who ran AFA embraced my weirdness and kept inviting me back because the whole crew there embraced weirdness: the freaks, the ignored…the individuals.

When I was a teenager, I used to wish I’d been around during the ’60s, either to be part of Warhol’s Factory, a musician or even a groupie…anything cooler than the present, but at 40 I can look back and say I’m grateful to have come of age in the ’90s if only to have met someone like Jackie. Trust me: No one at the Factory had a smile like Jackie’s and I’m guessing no one there knew the ‘granny song’ or would bother to sing it to you. Jackie was genuine, funny and kind. And at the end of the day, you can do a lot in whatever field you choose, be it art, physics, sports or anything, but to be genuine, funny and kind is a great accomplishment. And I’m sure anyone who knew Jackie would agree that he was all of these things.

I wanted to end with something Scottish. I looked through my book of Robert Burns’ poems and in the end decided not to butcher the Scottish accent so instead I plagiarized myself: I know the Lord or Lady or whoever is in charge giveth and taketh away, but the takething sucks especially for the living, all of who will miss Jackie tremendously.

Taco Waggytail

April 23, 2013

As many of you know, Reverend Jen Junior’s husband is my friend, Holly’s Chihuahua, Taco Waggytail. They were wed in the backyard of a Brooklyn bar 2 years ago. Also, turns out today is the 10-year anniversary of Holly adopting him. I will never forget how scared and malnourished he was when she brought him home. Today, he is a total badass that refuses to wear any clothes other than a pleather jacket that says “Hot Rod” on it. He is spoiled, healthy and awesome. He is also the inspiration for Waggytail Rescue, an organization that Holly founded that has saved thousands of dogs (and some cats too) for which Holly should achieve Sainthood.

Please spread the word about Waggytail Rescue. This is from Holly:

10 years ago today my best friend came into my life. He was scrawny and scared, and had been horribly abused the first year of his life.  Two days after, two friends of mine died violently, and he was my comfort, with our bodies melting together.

 adoptmetacoHe has been with me through a lot since then, both good and bad.   Every night, he sleeps with his front legs curled around my arm and his head on my shoulder.  I smile every day because of this dog.
 
 He is the inspiration for www.waggytailrescue.org, which has impacted the lives of nearly 4000 abandoned compaion animals, and brought joy to nearly as many families

 
In honor of Don Taco, I am hoping you will take a moment of kindness to do one of the following:
Donate to Waggytail Rescue- whether a dime. a dollar, or hundred dollars
via  paypal.com through the button on the site, amazon.comebay.com, or wag.com gift card 
 
Post this link to your Facebook and any other social media pages – foster families are needed now more than ever http://waggytailrescue.wordpress.com/foster-a-waggytail/
 
Foster a homeless animal, walk a dog at a local shelter, smile at someone with a dog, offer a poop bag to someone in need.  Give an act of kindness to an animal.
 
 Thank you all for being fantastic people and loving animals.

— 

Holly DeRito, President
www.waggytailrescue.org 
 
 “He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog.
You are his life, his love, his leader,
He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart,
You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.”
~ Unknown

New Post! Been a long time…

April 19, 2013

Wondering where I’ve been? Working on “Satan, Hold My Hand”, working a million hours, writing and taking care of the animals (Tenney is all healed and acting like an a-hole again.) Here he is chillaxing with his favorite drug.

catnip

Your Poem

March 30, 2013

You asked me why I never wrote any poems about you.

Because you weren’t my muse – you were my life.

There’s your poem.

Enjoy it as my life goes to shit.

Sincerely,

Your Muse

New ASS Studios DVD!

November 6, 2012

Look out world! ASS is coming to Europe!

America’s City

September 11, 2012

On the 11th Anniversary of 9-11, an excerpt from my book, Elf Girl. (Also, would like to add that my neighbors who died were immigrants. When I still see so much racism, anti-immigrant sentiment and ignorance in the news today, my only prayer is that the children of those who died live to see a more tolerant era, one that is ruled by love instead of fear.)

p.s. Lorne, I’m sorry I thought we all were gonna die and I didn’t just let you sleep through it.

America’s City:

One of the great things about New York is that it’s possible to become a New Yorker. One cannot go to LA and become an LA-er. New York will adopt pretty much anyone who is willing to live here.

There is even a 151-foot woman at the entrance to New York’s Harbor with an open invitation inscribed at her base: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore, Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

Years ago, people in other countries got a load of this and thought America must rock. So they came in droves, except for the African slaves, who’d been brought against their will and already knew that America certainly did not rock. Soon the many immigrants who came to New York also discovered that America wasn’t quite the Cancun spring break par-tay they’d imagined.

However, many immigrants were fleeing from even worse shitholes. Famine, state-sponsored murder, destruction, war, religious persecution, political strife, social chaos, widespread poverty, diseases and natural disasters are all things that motivated people to get the hell out of dodge and come here.

Once they got here, they lived in heinous, cramped tenements much like the one I live in now. Only when they moved in, Wall Street Journal reading hipsters didn’t live across the hall. Also, many housing laws hadn’t been passed yet, so sometimes their toilets were outhouses behind their buildings. If they lived in 6-floor walkups like me, they would’ve had to go in chamber pots and then carry their pee down the stairs. Can you imagine if you were drinking beer and had only one small chamber pot and lived in a 6-floor walkup?

Carrying chamber pots up and down stairs wasn’t the only inconvenience back in the day. In the early 1800s, Yellow Fever killed thousands of people and throughout the mid 1800s, Cholera killed thousands of people. Then in the 1860s, the American Civil War killed thousands of people.  On top of all this disease, war and death, immigrants found that in order to pay for rent, food and everything else they had to work long hours for “the Man.” Sometimes this ended in disaster. In 1911, a fire broke out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory and 146 garment workers were killed, mostly young immigrant women.

Despite all of the horror and death, New York City’s population miraculously kept growing–even after Margaret Sanger opened the first U.S. birth control clinic in Brooklyn in 1916. This happened because New Yorkers know how to par-tay, and people will invariably go to where there’s a good party.

And everything here caters to this party. NYC’s street grid system means it’s really hard to get lost here, no matter how fucked up you are, and NYC’s subway system means you never have to select a designated driver.

Even in 1920, when prohibition threatened everyone’s good time, speakeasies popped up allover the city, so people partied even harder than before.

Then the Great Depression came along. To say things were shitty would be redundant. Obviously they were shitty. It’s called the Great Depression after all. But that didn’t stop builders from entering a 410-day manic state during which they erected the tallest skyscraper in the world.

The Empire State Building was completed in 1931, and it made everyone else in the world just a little jealous of New Yorkers – partying till dawn, riding their handy subways while drunk on illegal booze, then having sex without procreation thanks to birth control from Margaret Sanger’s local clinic, all while staring out their windows at the TALLEST BUILDING IN THE WORLD.

New York was simply too awesome, and people resented its awesomeness. In 1972, when the even taller Twin Towers were erected, people resented New York even more. It was simply too cool. So people said mean things about New York. They said its inhabitants were assholes, that they were a rude bunch of hippies, punks, faggots, commies, pornographers, anarchists, antichrists, prostitutes, Satanists, strippers, pinkos, derelicts, opportunists and freaks who all smoked crack and didn’t lead normal lives like they were supposed to. And a lot of this was true, which is why New York was so fun.

And then something happened.

I heard it before I saw it – a terrifying, thunderous explosion. It woke me up, and I ran to my bedroom window, expecting to see a tenement building collapsing as they often do, or even thinking maybe my own building had started to collapse. People were on their roofs staring toward Delancey Street, their mouths agape in horror, some screaming. I ran to my kitchen window and saw that both of the Twin Towers had holes in them and were on fire.

I thought the city was under attack and that I was about to die. Banging on Lorne’s door I screamed, “Lorne, wake up!”

Lorne and I stared out the window in shock. He turned on the radio, and we learned that planes had struck the Towers. When they fell, I don’t remember the sound they made, I only remember a collective horrified gasp and then people pouring up the street, covered in soot.

And then in the weeks that followed, everything changed.

Suddenly, people loved New York, because they saw that all the pinkos and freaks really cared about each other. They realized that even though New York is a city where people beat the crap out of each other over taxicabs and openly call each other fuckheads, it is also a city where millions of people coexist on a tiny archipelago without killing each other, because of a profound respect for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

They saw New York’s humanness.

We were like the most popular girl in class who suddenly gets her period while wearing white pants. You can’t hate her anymore. You want to offer her a new pair of pants and a tampon from your purse.

People wanted to help. They wanted to adopt us. So a megalomaniac Mayor who’d created a decency panel while carrying on an adulterous affair was suddenly “America’s Mayor,” and we were suddenly “America’s City,” even though we’d been fired from being America’s capital way back in the 1700s.

People came to New York in droves wearing “Oregon Loves New York” buttons and FDNY t-shirts. And they shopped and ate and tried to help us be awesome again. And little American flags popped up everywhere and everyone, everywhere else in America got so angry as they gathered around their TV sets watching newscasters try to cover their gigantic boners as they repeatedly aired maudlin interviews with grieving family members and trotted out new “America Under Attack” graphics.

Meanwhile in the newly appointed America’s City, a heinous smell permeated the air, one even grosser than before. It was so strong – a mix of dead bodies, fiberglass, metal, everything blown into tiny fragments, hanging in the sky. You couldn’t smell it without thinking of the dead. And you couldn’t leave your home without mourning the dead.

The morning after 9-11, I left my apartment and saw a photo of my next-door neighbor and his brother on a missing poster. I hadn’t realized they’d worked at Windows on the World at the top of the World Trade Center. They had been there when the planes hit. I said hello to them every, day but I didn’t know where they worked.

Most of the missing posters were really death pronouncements. You either walked away or you didn’t. And I knew I would never see my neighbors again. I broke down. Sitting on my doorstep, I sobbed, thinking about their wives and children. When I picked myself up and crossed Delancey Street, I saw trucks carrying the National Guard moving across the Williamsburg Bridge. No one else was out on the street. I felt like I’d survived a zombie movie. Everything was quiet except for the trucks. People were hiding, huddled around their televisions. Our asshole president was hiding, too.

Sometimes I bought flowers and set them down next to all the other flowers and candles outside of our building left under the photos of the brothers. There were makeshift memorials like this all over the city, covered in candles and flowers.

Soon the missing posters fell off of lampposts or were taken down. Mostly when you saw one, you knew the person in the picture was dead. It was like seeing ghosts every time you turned a corner.

Three years later, when the Republicans brought their convention to New York City, I noticed a tiny, handwritten sign on a lamppost. It was someone’s personal protest against the whoring out of the city they loved.

It read:

    Dear Mr. President,

   If Crawford, Texas, suffered a massive attack and thousands of your neighbors died, would I bring all of my friends there and have a big party?

    When I saw that sign, I knew New York had once again become awesome. And I felt proud to be a New Yorker.

Faire Maiden

August 29, 2012

A piece from the book I’m currently working on, originally published in Preen Magazine. Dedicated to my sister who drove me to more than one Ren Faire:   

   My training hadn’t been paid so I was more broke than ever. Luckily, my photographer friend, Rosalie called with a last minute writing gig that would take me far away from the harsh realities of psychotherapy and into a Land of Make Believe.

   “So, hey, Rev. I’m shooting for this fancy fashion mag called Preen. I’ve convinced them to let me shoot a photo essay on the Renaissance Faire this Sunday, mostly because I just wanna go to the Renaissance Faire. Then I convinced them that you would be the appropriate journalist to cover it.”

   “Awesome! I wanted to go to the Ren Faire but I’m too broke.”

   “Well, listen they’ll pay you 200 bucks and it’s all expenses paid.

   “We can totally write off our mead.”

   “Exactly.”

   I have always been a fan of Ren Faires and of the Renaissance in general. If you overlook the Black Death, wars of religion, corrupt popes and witch hunts, the Renaissance was pretty rockin’. Perhaps that’s why, more than four centuries later, Renaissance Faires have become a phenomenon. Part craft fair, part theatrical production and part historical reenactment, as my friend Tanya said, “they are also a wonderful opportunity for the young and friendless to become no longer friendless.”

   As a teenaged dork trapped in the suburbs, I eagerly awaited Maryland’s Ren Faire every autumn. There I could escape the cultural cesspool that was the ‘80s for the romance of the Elizabethan period. Chivalrous boys in tunics were much more appealing than the football-jersey-clad jocks who taped “Kick Me, I’m an Art Fag” signs on my back at school.

   I imagined the only thing better than going to the Faire would be acting as a Ren Faire Correspondent. Now I would have leeway to chat up Ren Faire hotties in the guise of journalism. Having spent the year absorbed in Arthurian Literature, I longed to find a lover with jousting skills and the ability to speak elvish.

   “We’re totally gonna find you a new boyfriend,” Rosalie said. “I’ve heard the Ren Faire is all about hookin’ up.”

   “Huzzah to that!” I exclaimed, already working some Faire lingo into my vocab. “My whole life, I’ve been searching for a man like King Arthur and I’m just not finding him in the East Village.”

   We discussed what I should wear to attract the man of my dreams. At Ren Faires, the term “Renaissance” is interpreted loosely. Often you’ll find fairgoers dressed as magical creatures like elves and faeries. This could be because Shakespeare and Spenser wrote about elves and fairies or because dorks just generally like to dress as elves and fairies. Sometimes fairgoers dress as legendary medieval characters like King Arthur, Merlin and the Lady of the Lake, even though the Middle Ages happened before the Renaissance. Still, it’s all shit that went down in Europe a really long time ago and, whether you’re attending a “Medieval Faire” or a “Renaissance Faire,” you’re likely to find a lot of the same stuff as well as an excuse to drink during the day.

   Though I have several cloaks and a replica of the dress Arwen wore to wed Aragorn, I wanted to wear something flattering and easy to move in. Cloaks are cool but they’re about as flattering as pleated pants. I opted instead for an Edwardian paisley mini dress, a large wizard pendant, platform go-go boots emblazoned with imagery of Adam and Eve cavorting in the Garden of Eden, black tights and my signature elf ears. It was an outfit reminiscent of the way people in the ‘60s interpreted medieval fashion, signifying to those around me that I am indeed an LSD Casualty.

   After selecting my outfit, I called the Faire Headquarters to find out if I could bring Reverend Jen Junior, who has a Legolas costume I made for her two Halloweens ago. I figured it might be her only opportunity to wear it again. I was told that because the Faire features horses and other animals, dogs are not allowed, not even fabulous Chihuahuas in Middle Earthen garb.

   Finding a dog-sitter, I then looked into transportation. Because Rosalie and I hoped to consume mass quantities of ale, driving to the Faire was not an option. Luckily, the Lords and Ladies at the Shortline Bus Company offered bus service to and from the Faire. The only catch was that the bus left New York City at 10 a.m. and departed the Faire at 6:30 p.m., which equaled a minimum of eight hours at the Faire. I wasn’t sure I could handle it.

   Undeterred, I arrived at Port Authority at the ungodly hour of 9:30 a.m. and held a place in line behind a preteen with a braided rattail who was attending with his mother. He opened a soda and it exploded on his embroidered tunic. I wanted to hug him and say, “Don’t worry, in ten years, you will be cool.”

   Rosalie arrived moments before boarding, wearing a floral gown and carrying a pentagram-emblazoned bag. As our bus departed, we discussed the concept of the Ren Faire.

   “What I don’t understand,” I said, “Is why the Renaissance gets a Faire and other time periods don’t. Wouldn’t an Ancient Egyptian Faire be cool?”

   “Or an Age of Reason Faire.”

   “Or an Ancient Roman Faire with orgies and vomitoriums.” Once we’d exhausted the subject of wacky Faire possibilities, we studied my English to Elvish glossary. Ren Faire dudes would be totally impressed.

   Within an hour, we arrived at the Faire grounds, a village enshrouded by the Sterling Forest.

   Upon entering the gates, a corset-clad “wench” handed us programs and directed us to the privies – a cluster of unseemly Port-a-Potties. Still, our bladders had swollen like fatted pigs at slaughter, and we were grateful for the amenities, no matter how heinous. At least someone had thoughtfully scented my Port-a-Potty with incense.

   From there we wandered down Spendpenny Lane. Merchants beckoned us as flute music filled the air.

   “Would you like to pet a baby dragon?” a girl in devil horns asked me.

   “Sure,” I said, tending to like “baby” anything.

   She pulled a tiny lizard from the folds of her wooly cloak and handed it to me. Its little belly rose and fell as it climbed up my arm. I knew Jen Junior would not approve of anything entering our home that might take attention away from her so I handed the tiny creature back and continued.

   “I might have to buy a cloak,” I said, feeling chilly in the crisp September morn.

   As I said this, I noticed a glorious cloak dangling from a merchant’s booth. It was comprised of tiny scraps of beige leather sewn together meticulously.

   “That’s just like the cloaks the gelflings wore in The Dark Crystal,” I gasped, when, from out of nowhere, a woman who looked remarkably like a gelfling materialized.

   “I’m a friend of Wendy Froud,” she said, having heard my gelfling comment. Wendy Froud is the artist who designed the gelflings. Apparently she based their appearance on her friend.

   Since I don’t wear leather and because most of the cloaks cost upwards of $1,400, I explained that I was just browsing. Even so, the live gelfling showed us everything at the booth. I tried on a “belt bag” which is like a medieval fanny pack, only more flattering – perfect for freeing up one’s hands for other activities like mead-swilling and axe-throwing. Rosalie tried on a faux-fur barbarian style mini-cape while I checked out a wall of leather “Rennathongs.” Noting they had no cotton crotch, I decided they were a recipe for ye olde yeast infection.

   It was almost time to start drinking, but first we needed sustenance. A funnel cake stand called out to us. Fried dough topped with sugar seemed like a good strategy for soaking up alcohol and was especially appealing since I could feel my “blood of the moon” cycle coming on. Rosalie opted for an apple fritter, which tasted exactly like the funnel cake, but was a different shape.

   We sat on a bench, feasting and observing fairgoer fashion. The pirate look was overwhelmingly popular with men thanks to Johnny Depp. With women, wearing your boobs up to your chin appeared to be the trend.

   “Corsets and beer drinking just don’t go together,” I noted. I refuse to wear anything that might constrict my beer gut from expanding or that takes more than two minutes to get in or out of.

   I took out my program and looked at the schedule. Time management was crucial, which meant watching a Midsummer Night’s Dream was out. Because I hate magicians, magic was also out. That left jousting – hot men on horses hitting each other with sticks – the official sport of my home state of Maryland. The joust didn’t start for two hours so we decided to go in search of libation.

   Though the funnel cake was possessed of some magic that caused Rosalie and me to continue picking at it even after we felt sick to our stomachs, we eventually tossed it and rose from our bench.

   We noticed two men dressed as barbarians, one of whom inexplicably had a tin of Spam attached to his belt. Figuring they too must be in search of beer, we followed them as they wandered into the Blue Boar Inn, a Faire hot spot brewing with activity.

   “Are you barbarians?” I asked them.

   “I am,” said the Spam-accessorized man. “He’s not sure what he is,” he added pointing to his friend. “What kind of elf are you?”

   “I’m an urban elf.”

   “You’re more like a hippie elf!” he exclaimed, disgusted by my apparent pacifism.

   “No. She’s a groovy elf,” his friend corrected. I was impressed by his ability to differentiate between a hippie and a groovy aesthetic.

   I am not a hippie. I own exactly one pair of jeans and I iron them. The groovy aesthetic is innocent like The Partridge Family or Banana Splits.

   Because I wanted to remain coherent enough to take notes, I chose Budweiser over mead. Settling onto a bench with my drink, I felt like Frodo hanging at the Prancing Pony.

   And as mine lips did finally meet the frothy King of Beers, my eyes beheld the King of my dreams – a strapping young Ren Faire god. He had shoulder-length, brown wavy hair and wore upper body armor as casually as if it were a t-shirt. He sat in a throne, hoisting a pint with his manly cohorts. There were no metrosexuals at the Blue Boar. These were men who would gut you with daggers if you so much as broached the subject of eyebrow waxing.

   The testosterone was intoxicating. My pantaloons moistened as I imagined him unsheathing Excalibur in all its glory and delivering me from the clutches of a dragon or some other equally scary mythological beast. We would then ride off into the mists of the isle of Manhattan upon the back of a trusty unicorn.

   “Will you be jousting this afternoon?” I casually asked him, cloaking my social anxiety in journalistic inquiry.

   “No, this is my light gear,” he answered, piercing my soul with his piercing blue eyes.

   My Elvish tongue grew suddenly tied and I only managed a few more questions. It turns out my King Arthur was actually “Dennis,” an actor from New Jersey who did not seem very sociable or interested in bedding an elf.

   “I didn’t dress slutty enough,” I said to Rosalie as we left the Blue Boar. “If it weren’t so cold, I’d get a chain-mail bikini.”

   From there we moseyed to the Pendragon Axe-Throwing booth. Apparently, axe-throwing is extremely popular with people who’ve been drinking all day. I waited in line but gave up. Jousting was about to start and I didn’t want to miss a minute of it.

   As expected, the first jouster, “Sir Walter Raleigh” was hot. He looked more like Orlando Bloom than any historical depictions of Walter Raleigh I’ve seen. But his hotness was not enough to defend him against “Sir Guy DeGuisborne,” who broke Sir Walter’s stick in the final showdown.

   After the match we sauntered back to the Blue Boar where a band was playing raucous Irish tunes. I interviewed various characters including “Frederic” a ringwraith and “Bubbles” a faerie. I began to forget that there was a reality outside of the Ren Faire. Time flew and before long it was time for the final event of the day – the Royal Joust.

   Heading for the tournament field, we turned a corner and ran into socialist badasses, Robin Hood and his band of merry men. I asked them how they liked wearing tights all day.

   Will Scarlett, the cheekiest of the bunch, answered, “I like my tights but not as much as you do.”

   They vogued for Rosalie’s camera before bidding us adieu.

   When we finally got to the tournament, there was a commotion and we saw that our new friend, Robin Hood, was being dragged out before the people to await punishment from the Queen!

   Sadly, we couldn’t stay for his sentencing because our bus was leaving in five minutes and I didn’t want to spend the night in the forest.

   Exhausted from hours of merrymaking, we slid into our velour bus seats.

   “The amazing thing about the Faire,” Rosalie said, “Is that everyone there was so nice.

   “I know. That would never happen at a rock concert.”

   No doors had been slammed in my face. No one had blathered into a cell phone inches from my ears. And for the past eight hours, men had called me “my Lady.” As far as “scenes” go, the Ren Faire subculture is as attitude-free as it gets. No one there was trying to be cool. I hadn’t seen a dude in a suit, a hipster or a wireless device all day, a fact that made me want to party like it’s 1599 all the time.  

August 29, 2012

Elf and Mojo or “Zodiac Unicorn.”

Publisher’s Weekly

August 17, 2012

I’m glad I’ve been attempting the impossible: a press kit, else I never would have known that Publisher’s Weekly gave Elf Girl a great review! This is why I need an intern!