Time for Sleeping Beauty to Wake The Fuck UP!

I’ve had Caitlin Moran’s ‘How to be a Woman’ signed out from work for a week. I’m only supposed to sign books out one at a time, and only for a week. Yet I haven’t cracked the cover. I’ve meant to read the book since I first saw it in the bookstore. I began reading her new book “Moranthology,’ today while at work. I’d finished a new post for this very blog, while on lunch and thought, “God/dess I’ve got to work on my blogging skills,” when I discovered Moranthology on the shelves. She had me at “People like people who bring cake!” And I had to finish the book. So I bought it. So I’m halfway through it. While her book, How To Be a Woman sits languishing, whispering, “I’m do back at the store, Sweetie!” In a creepy Poltergeist-y, ‘there here!’ voice. I’m hooked.

Is it the allure of consumerism that made me buy the newer book while the free signed-out book sat languishing? Or was it just my frustration at my own prose and the fact that I usually want to crack the cover on something escapist when I go to bed, and so avoid nonfiction in the wee hours of the night?

So I was supposed to go to the house of some friends to see the last episode EVER of Downton Abby tonight, an invitation which I have habitually blown off the last two seasons. The only excuse I could come up with for not going has been that it’s cold in winter in Vermont, and DARK… <petulant foot kick> and I don’t feel like going out once I get home and comfy in my chair with my cat shedding in my lap… All of which are true. This weekend, I was determined to go.

“See you SUNDAY!” I said with a pointy gunny finger and a wink, but the time came and – yeah, nope.

So I was watching a documentary “Winter on Fire” on Netflix when the time came to go. So I’d been struggling to write all day with some kind of – ANY kind of – clarity and feeling like it just wasn’t happening. So I had a wicked headache as I watched the Maidan Square in the city of Kiev in the Ukraine burn and the police beat the shit out of people who had been protesting peacefully and was feeling a bit like – really? We’re going to go watch a PBS show about the dying aristocracy in England circa 19th century while the Ukraine STILL continues to burn? (At the time that I am writing this, the body count for the Ukraine Civil War is 9,000+) while Donald Trump gets more and more popular here in the US even though his speeches have been paralleled to Hitlers? (And yes, let me say I am not unaware of how many comparisons to Hitler have been made during the five decades since WWII ended and how often they’ve been conflated.)

And it dawned on me that I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t indulge in escapist television tonight, even though the main goal was socializing. I feel so strongly that our society here in the States has gotten further and further anesthetized to the realities of the world – I’ve been likening the US to the last days of Rome for a good many decades – since college – and I just realized THAT 30 year reunion has come and gone recently – that I couldn’t spend the night imitating the country we broke from over 20 years ago – for good reason.

It’s time for Sleeping Beauty to wake up. Perhaps she needs to be willing to be pricked by a few needles. Perhaps she needs to just put on some chain-mail gloves and just spin the fucking spinning wheel. Get out there and DO something. Kill her TV.

It is done…

Said the creepy man in the horror film… Moo ah ha hahah…

I did it. 4 Shows in a month. January 31st through February 19th, I got up onstage and did my funny thing. Overall it was a success. My god! You’re kidding me!?!?!? Last night’s show – open mic at Cafe Espresso Bueno. It was a small but appreciative crowd and the folks were funny. Thanks to Espresso Bueno and Soshanna for hosting us!.

This week I’ve decide to start collecting funny sounding words and phrases. I share this week’s with you here:

  1. Wiffenpoof
  2. Whiply Weedlash (aka Sniedly Whiplash)
  3. Toxic Tickledicks
  4. Venomous Plot Garglers
  5. Gardyloo! (Exclamation required)

To explain…The Whiffenpoofs, and acapella group from Yale will be performing in Montpelier, Barre and I think at the Flynn this week… Gotta say that several times… Wiffenpoofs, Poofinwiffs (gives another whole connotation, doesn’t it?) My sister was trying and couldn’t for the life of her remember Sniedly Whiplash’s correct name the other day. All she could come up with was Whiply Weedlash? Weedly Sneidlash? WTF is his name, Kim?! While in the other room, her boyfriend as going “It’s Sniedly Whiplash!” And the 3rd and 4th on the list come froms that old chestnut, Chuck Wendig. These are a couple of insults he was throwing out to the losers at Huffington post who were bragging that they don’t pay their authors on their blogs  because, and I paraphrase here, divorced of money their bloggers’ posts are ‘more authentic’ because they WANT to write. Assholes. And finally, Gardyloo! Is a term used in Ireland when someone would throw the fillings of their bedpan out the window. Originally in French: “garde à l’eau! look out for the water!”

So with that in mind, I go out in search for more interesting words and etymologies to entertain myself and you! If you have any cool words you’re enamoured with, give a shout out in the comments section below.

“May the funny be with you”

Last one in this series…

OK – Weather and sign-up success depending, I’ll be at Cafe Bueno on Friday: Open Mic: Stroke Yer Joke: Cafe Esspresso Bueno, Main Street, Barre, 8pm Friday, February 19th (free).  This is a great venue for you to just come see some fun comedians. Good food. Good Chai. Or coffee. Great audiences.

& Just for fun, here’s a shot of the Hunter’s Chorus from my short musical, “Man versus Squirrel” – One of many great shots taken by Bill Kneen for us. 

Great shot of me and the gals with Bill Pelton at TenFest 2015

Up to the Big City Tonight…

I’ll be trying to grab 5 minutes of fame tonight by showing up to the Vermont Comedy Club’s Open Mic at 7 pm. (Well, I’ll be there earlier to guarantee a spot for myself)Kim Contemplates. I’ve been trimming and honing my material, worrying about what to wear, and timing my stuff. Can’t wait! (to get it over with… she mumbles)

Tonight, I’ll be discussing the hot mess of why I feel like a man in drag when I wear a dress, what the fun toys are my dad’s Catholic side of the family got that my mom’s New England Protestant side did NOT, and who knows, perhaps the strange way my great grandfather decided to try and stop his first real Ford truck when he got home drunk from a barn dance and forgot he WASN’T in his wagon, with a horse that could stop for him…

But seriously, it’s a big step for me to even try to do material in Burlington, which I hear is a younger, hipper crowd – and tougher.

Break a belly… a larynx… a leg, right?!


“49+ and a Hot Mess…”

imageSo, Open Mic at the American Legion Hall is next. I survived my round with the Not-so-surprise Roast of Bob Thomas. I think all in all I did the job. Not a high points scoring night but no big fouls either (and I’m not a huge sports fan, so it must be the proximity of the Super Bowl that has me using  sports metaphors tonight) I stuck to roasting Bob, made some good moments of laughter, got off stage when I started to run out of steam without making too much of a mess.

I’ve been thinking a lot about turning 50 in May. When I was young (say 11 or so) I used to think “The year, 2001! What will that be like? Will I even be ALIVE?!” In that innocent way we think that someone who is in their 30s is OLD… So, my stand up is beginning to form around some themes… Oldness… Single Oldness (isn’t that called being a spinster?) hormones, failures, missed opportunities and crushed dreams, health issues and colonoscopies. All in all, I’ve been thinking if I ever GET the point of having a full night’s show, I’ll call it “Hot Mess” because, let’s face it, there’s a reason when my whole family saw the first Ice Age movie ads they immediately said, “Hey, Scrat! That’s you, Kim!” As the prehistoric squirrel scrambled around desperately trying to catch his ever bouncing acorn.

So if you wanna hear me talk about what it’s like – you know, for ME – to get old – come to the open mic tomorrow night.

Open Mic: Laugh Local, VT: American Legion Hall, Main Street, Montpelier, 8pm, Friday February 5th (Donations at the door).


And Away We Go…!

My first gig is coming up this Saturday, January 30th at the American Legion Hall (ALPO#3) on the Main Street in Montpelier @ 7:00pm.

This is a 60th birthday roast for our good pal, Bob Thomas, who has the longest running open mic in Vermont. It should be a hoot. If I don’t pass out from fear. I’ve done comedy but not a roast, and I keep picturing Betty White ripping Bill Shatner to ribbons and being the best one up there and thinking… “OK, a high bar, let’s see if I can at least touch it from below when I jump.”

Luckily, between what I know of Bob, the biographical info we’ve been secretly fed (I’ll call them our comedy mission files) from Bitsy Byron, I think I have a chance.

There will be a ton of good comedians there, and it’s FREE! so I encourage you to come out and support the roast, fill the house, buy some cheap drinks, and have a ball!

“Hey you, yeah, you! Come see us circle up and take a big dump in front of Bob this Saturday. We’re also gonna steal his balls and run around the yard with them in our mouths!”

You gonna eat all of that sandwich?” – Anonymous Dog.


Time’s a Wastin’

It’s been a long time since I posted anything on this blog. I start and stop in fits, because, let’s face it, writing a blog regularly and expecting someone to read it, and be interested, can often be a very narcissistic undertaking, one that makes me feel a bit like I’m standing on the corner of State & Main with a cardboard sign that says in shaky handwriting, “Will take readers, willing to write anything.”

However, as 2016 opens, and 2015 is put to bed, and the amazing artistic icons of my youth are dropping like flies, (RIP David Bowie and Alan Rickman) I’ve decided to ‘get out on the water,’ so to speak.

In the last year and a half, I’ve left my job of 14 years, broken up with my partner of 17 years, realized my nephew – who we raised from the age of 12 – is now 29 and his younger brother is 23 with 2 kids of his own. My best friend and I just realized the other day we’ve known each other 25 years! 25!? A quarter of a century, and after bumping in to another friend on the street the other day, and realizing, “Yeah, Dan and I have known each other 30 years or more…” What? Am I my mother?! Shit. I’ve got a bath towel that is older (by 2 months) than one friend of mine.

All of this has made me realize that life is swiftly flowing by me, and I feel like it’s time to stop standing on the riverbank. So with that in mind, I’ve begun to finish some long languishing projects & goals including:

  1. The SciFi young adult novel I started many years ago
  2. Getting up onstage regularly to do stand up comedy (Info here)
  3. Planning my tiny house build for the coming year

Time is short. As writer, Chuck Wendig, says:

“It’s coming. I know it. And so I cleave to the act of creation both to spite and to make sense of the ineluctable destruction.”

This quote struck me perfectly the other day as I was reading Chuck’s blog – one of the few blogs from which I get regular newsletters in my in-box. I subscribe because Wendig knows not only how to drill down, hunker down and “Write harder, Motherfucker!”, but also because he knows how to create community and inspire the people that follow him. He writes his blog so well, in fact, that when I was working at Bear Pond Books the other day I said, “There’s a friend of mine who just wrote a book about the Star Wars franchise. We should carry it, and the rest of his stuff. He’s good,” then I thought, “What? I don’t KNOW Chuck Wendig!” But it seems as if I do. His regular posts make you feel like you do know him, at least in the way you might know a person who works at the same job as you.

And he does. Or he could. All I have to do is start living, start writing, go back to ‘arting’ damn it!

All I have to do is “Art Harder Mother fucker!” and I plan to. Starting right now.




Mandalas and moving the show

So our show, “Shared Landscapes” has closed at the Capital Grounds in Montpelier. We had a lot of great feedback from friends who saw it, so a hearty thanks to you all! To view the same show at it’s next location, go to the Coffee Corner on Main Street, Montpelier in March. They’re only open for breakfast and lunch, but they are open until 3:00 pm every day of the week.

Between now and then I’ll be focusing on fulfilling orders for prints. Now that my art is back home, I’ll be taking quality photographs for that purpose. Get your orders in soon! I’ll have the other two photos posted by Wednesday of this week. See the gallery on this page for prints and prices.

In the interim, I’ve been learning to make mandalas. It has been fun and meditative. Here is one I created, “Reindeer Moon Mandala”in honor of winter.

Have you got an interest in learning more about mandalas or in coloring some for a relaxing moment at night? Check out the following links if so



Come to our opening . . .

This Friday, January 3rd at Capital Grounds in Montpelier, Terri Kneen and I will be on hand for a reception for our show “Shared Landscapes.” The show consists of photos by Terri and watercolors by me. There is one piece which I watercolored using a photo of Terri’s as a jumping off point, within which Terri contributed some of her sketched stick figures as well. The art will be up for all of January, after which it will move over to the Coffee Corner for February.

Reception is at the Green Bean Gallery, Capital Grounds, 27 State Street, Montpelier, VT05602
From 6-8pm. Come pick up a cup of coffee and a pastry and enjoy the show!



I Think I Finally GET it!

I got inspired last night after posting my newest sketch, so I kept working until the painting was done. OK, so I was up until 1 am and I had to go back to work today, but I’ve been pulling that stunt since high school, and I even managed to make it to work on time today.

The really cool thing that happened was that half way through the water color I finally got it. I stopped, took a breath, loaded up the brush with just a LITTLE paint and a lot of water and went to it. Suddenly the amazing luminescence of the paint was in MY PAINTING! The funny thing was, I started the background as awkwardly as I had all three other times I had painted this before (see my previous, “That Awkward Moment” post). Too dark, too purple-Easter-eggy just not what I wanted, but I like how it turned out, and, well, you know, there is always more paper, more paint…

Either way, here is the finished piece. Note how much clearer this photo is…ah, Honey, I took out your camera and started using it, uh… OK?