“Sonoran Curtain Call”

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This is a drawing I made to promote my appearance at the Arizona Storytellers Project’s 4th anniversary show at Crescent Ballroom back in July. The picture was meant to be a tease about the nature of my story (which mostly involved my taking shrooms a few years ago at the Horas de Junio literary convention in Hermosillo and almost making a giant fool of myself in public). The show in July went very well (although I heard afterwards that some patrons were offended by my err, salty language and adult content). You’d think that telling a story about drug trips and cunnilingus hallucinations in a rock and roll venue after dark would be a safe bet, but as it turns out, nope.

No hard feelings, though. 🙂 The people who produce the AZ Storytellers Project are fine folks who are really easy to work with and always put on an excellent show. If you live in Phoenix and love storytelling, get your bad self to one of their shows ASAP.

Yours truly story-telling in July.
Yours truly story-telling in July.
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Spillin’ My Guts @ Spillers Tonight!

Speaking of fiction: tonight I’ll be at Crescent Ballroom to read at Spillers. This is the second time they’ve done this show, and I’m really excited to be a part of this one. Spillers is a live show where writers read short fiction; for Phoenix, this is an unusual literary event, as the vast majority of shows like these focus on poetry or real life storytelling. Having a night devoted purely to short fiction is a much needed addition to our local cultural landscape.

So, yeah: if you live in Phoenix and enjoy literary events (that are FREE), come on down tonight and check out Spillers. You’ll get to hear 6 writers read their work (including yours truly reading a new sci-fi/dark comedy short story, “Sing For Your Supper”).

For more event details, click this link.

Four Tattoo Ideas Live Onstage

Check it out, homeys. Last night your boy got asked to do something at PEP Rally at Lawn Gnome Publishing for their “Ink” show. Normally I do some characters and shit, put on some wigs, act all English or crazy or whatever, but I thought that last night I would go as my most authentic self. For reals. So I got my Sylvia Plath on, you know what I’m saying, sticking my head in the ol’ Easy-Bake Oven (*puff puff cough*) to get in The Zone and got onstage.

So for this show I showed the audience my four tattoo ideas. See, I’ve been meaning to get a new tattoo for years now and my boy Gooch and I have come up with some sick designs. Like, sicker than mongoose flu, bros. So I hads to show everyone these sick designs for, like, crowd-surfing purposes. Wait: I mean crowd-sourcing. So like the audience would vote for which design I’d put on my body next.

TAT #1

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This is a tat of a bong made out of Gandalf’s head. Because I like to get high as fuck, and nothing would jack you up higher than balls like smoking up a wizard, son.

TAT #2

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So this tat symbolizes my love of the movie “Xanadu”, that I think rollerskates and rainbows are bitchin’ as hell, and that Olivia Newton-John has got some bodacious cans, brah.

TAT #3

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This tat is about the only thing I love more than smoking weed, and that’s eating pussy, dawg. My boy Gooch said I’m like the Cookie Monster of cunnilingus and I was like, damn, that’s it! I’m The Pussy Monster! So here it is. And if you were wondering what that censored bar is, when I first drew this he was holding up a vagina. But it looked kind of weird, like why he is holding up a vagina disconnected from a human being, right? I mean, the only people who walk around holding nuthin’ but genitals is serial killers and that’s not the kind of message I’m trying to project, feel me?

TAT #4

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And this last tat is a swastika made out of dicks. This symbolizes my straight-up don’t-give-a-fuck, shock-the-system, hack-the-planet, paradigm-shifting, damn-the-man-to-the-max attitude. Nothing says “Yo, I don’t give a fuck about your rules” like a swastika made out of dicks, bro. It’s the ultimate symbol of free speech. And it’s not hateful, because check it: Nazis were super-homophobic, right? No way they’d ever let a swastika be made out of dicks! And I’m half Jewish, so I’m 50% sure I can get away with this.

I showed the audience my four tat ideas and they were all like, dude, #3 or go home. And I was like cool. And that was my night last night. Peace.

Siamese Dreams, Cowboy Photography and Flagstaff, Oh My!

Lorenzo Llama showing off his talent(s).
Lorenzo Llama showing off his talent(s).

Yesterday I drove up to Flagstaff (which I haven’t visited since I was a wee Ash) to perform in the first ever Big Pine Comedy Festival. I opened the 7pm sketch comedy show at Firecreek Coffee* (hosted by standup wunderkind Anthony Desamito), where I played my character Lorenzo Llama (renowned Old Town Scottsdale boudoir/cowboy photographer and expert on the subject of dick pics), who spent 20 minutes giving the audience pointers on how to take the perfect dick pic.

I also spent part of my time wandering downtown Flagstaff (where it’s a BITCH to park, I must say) and enjoying the architecture and vibe of the place. The festival itself (the little of it I got to see) seemed to be a major success: excellent crowds, comics and sketch groups that were on top of their game and a very positive, communal atmosphere pervaded the day.

I drove home listening to “Siamese Dream” on a warped cassette. Even with all the weird noise and bloops on the tape, it’s still an incredible album and (much to my surprise) it is PERFECT ROAD TRIP MUSIC. I could listen to the 1-2 punch of “Geek USA” into “Mayonnaise” all day long (has there been a better song recorded that’s also named after a condiment? I doubt it).

Here’s hoping there will be a Big Pine in 2016. If there is, I’ll be there faster than you can say “Seriously, fuck the parking in Flagstaff!”.

Lorenzo displaying his other talent and passion: drawing caricatures.
Lorenzo displaying his other talent and passion: drawing caricatures.

*The coffee at Firecreek: their cold brew was awful-awful-awful. Not as bad as the Starbucks cold brew abomination, but close. On the other hand: their salted cardamom latte was SHEER UNBRIDLED ECSTASY. Best latte I’ve had in my life. And their house pretzel (with pale ale mustard) is pretty choice, too.

“Ashley’s Dream”

This is a monologue I wrote and performed as part of “Rate Your Face”, a theatrical collaboration between Space 55 and ASU Gammage (that was directed by artist in residence Aaron Landsman). Over the course of several months, we would meet with Landsman and brainstorm themes and concepts to play with, and then in the two weeks leading up to the show we all sat down, wrote a bunch of material for it, blocked it, rehearsed it and put it up on its feet in front of a live audience for a weekend of performances. This monologue was inspired by a recurring dream I would have throughout my teenage years. Sometimes I still have it…

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The “Rate Your Face” players (left to right): Ernesto Moncada, Ron Foligno, Moi, Dennis Frederick, Charlie Steak, Dan Tobin, Lee Quarrie, Tracy Liz Miller & Kevin Patterson

And lest I forget: this video was shot by Glen “Glen AZ” Goldblatt, who has been recording shows at the space for years (as well as burlesque shows and other events around the Valley: if you’ve seen a live performance in Phoenix in the last 3 years, odds are good you’ve seen Glen and his cameras at some point).

Chalks Make The Man

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Last night at Lawn Gnome bookstore’s Pink Slip open mic (hosted by Andy Warpigs), I read some of my “It’s So Hot” and Harry Potter haikus. I hadn’t planned on reading that night, so I was under-dressed. Not wanting to look shabby onstage, I made myself this suit to wear. Crouching behind a chalkboard and reading to a mic perched OVER your head is way more fun than it sounds.

“Mama, We’re All Okilly Dokilly Now”: The Simpsons, Music And Donuts at The Trunk Space

Last Saturday Phoenix’s premier (and only) Ned Flanders heavy “nedal” group Okilly Dokilly had their first ever show at The Trunk Space. Yours truly was there as part of the Springfield Elementary School Carnival happening in the Trunk’s back-lot. There was bowling, trivia, caricature drawing, three card monty, donuts and fortune-telling (done by yours truly and Ernesto Moncada).

The show was crazy packed! The last time I saw the Trunk THAT packed was when Lightning Bolt came to town and gave us all tinnitus. The audience seemed really into it, and fun was had by all. Here are some photos from that fan-diddly-tastic evening: the uncredited photos are my own; the other pictures are sourced from Flim Springfield and Phoenix New Times’ coverage of the event. If you’re a local and you missed it, fear not: The Neds will be slapping us all with their Left Hand of Darkness at The Rebel Lounge on Sept. 25th.

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Photo courtesy of Flim Springfield

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Yours truly manning the fortune-telling table (photo by Flim Springfield)
Yours truly manning the fortune-telling table (photo by Flim Springfield)
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YOU are the face of Demon Ned (Flim Springfield photo)
Photo by Frank Cordova
The Fortune Teller divining your future from the palm of your hand (Photo by Frank Cordova)
Russ Kazmierczak Jr. doing caricatures at the carnival (photo by Frank Cordova)
Russ Kazmierczak Jr. doing caricatures at the carnival (photo by Frank Cordova)
Caricature of yours truly by Russ.
Caricature of yours truly by Russ.
The Leftorium merch booth (photo by Frank Cordova)
The Leftorium merch booth (photo by Frank Cordova)
The Simpsons Trivia table (photo by Frank Cordova)
The Simpsons Trivia table (photo by Frank Cordova)
BOWLING. (Photo by Frank Cordova)
BOWLING. (Photo by Frank Cordova)
(Photo by Flim Springfield)
(Photo by Flim Springfield)
That sign wasn't kidding: 'TWAS PACKED! (Photo by Frank Cordova)
That sign wasn’t kidding: ‘TWAS PACKED! (Photo by Frank Cordova)
Andy Warpigs (photo by Frank Cordova)
Hug of War (Photo by Frank Cordova)
Hug of War (Photo by Frank Cordova)
MAN-CAT (photo by Frank Cordova)
MAN-CAT (photo by Frank Cordova)
The Neds chilling outside Moe's (Photo by Frank Cordova)
The Neds chilling outside Moe’s (Photo by Frank Cordova)
Okilly Dokilly raging nedal style (Photo by Frank Cordova)
Okilly Dokilly raging nedal style (Photo by Frank Cordova)

And if you want more warped “Simpsons” goodness, check out these Sharpie and chalk drawings I did last week.