Friday, March 3, 2017

Out west!

This week, I returned to one of my favorite cities in the U.S.: Seattle. Other than a quick connection through the airport when I returned from Hawaii last year, I hadn't been there since 2010.

I woke up around 3 am, headed to Keith Lenart's (the headliner, and my frequent travel buddy) house, and his girlfriend drove us to the airport. We took two flights to Seattle, and even scored our own row on the Detroit-Chicago leg.

The first order of business upon landing was finding yummy vegan food. I had forgotten that Veggie Grill (my favorite chain of vegan restaurants) had restaurants in Seattle. So, we quickly found our way to one.

I had the mac and cheese and a Caesar salad, and Keith had the Beyond Meat burger (which, he thankfully, let me steal a piece of). Both were beyond good!

We then headed about an hour and a half north to Tulalip Casino for our show that night. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures at the show (despite it being a lot of fun!), but I did snap some pictures of the sushi we had that night (priorities, no?). 'Twas delish!

The next day, Keith and I decided to be tourists in downtown Seattle. I talked him into riding the Great Wheel, which, in retrospect likely was not worth the $14 admission price. Although, since there were barely any other riders, the operators gave us three extra spins around.
Probably a bad time to remember I'm not a big fan of heights. Gulp.

View from the wheel.

After getting off the Great Wheel, we found more spinny adventures. We decided to save our money on this one though. 

We talked around Pike Place Market, where I bought a snickerdoodle cookie the size of my head.

Quintessential tourist pic.

Words to live by.
A cool brewery we walked by.
That night, we performed at Muckleshoot Casino. Not only was the show a lot of fun, but I had the pleasure of meeting Washington comics Charles Dorbey and Marianne Reilly. Not only did they both have me cracking up, but they could not have been sweeter.

Keith on stage. 
On Thursday, I headed across the entire state of Washington and onto Pendleton, Oregon for my gig at the Wildhorse Casino. Again, I could kick myself for not getting any pictures of the show. I did, however, manage to snag a shot while driving (shh...don't tell anyone) through the mountains.

My time in Pendleton was quick, and before I knew it, I was driving back through the mountains to pick up Keith and fly home.

A shot from the airport. Love your greenness, Seattle!
I definitely wish I could have stayed longer!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Brew Ha-Ha

I had the pleasure of performing at the Brew Ha-Ha this weekend. The Brew Ha-Ha is an annual beer-tasting/comedy festival held at the Dow Events Center in Saginaw, Michigan. It was absolutely incredible!

The folks at the Dow were so good to us! And we even got our own dressing rooms:
Feeling fancy.
Don't worry; I won't let it get to my head too much as I'm sure I'll be playing a bowling ally for 15 people in no time.

 Not only did I get to try lots of different types of beer, but I also got to have fun in the photo booth: 
That's Connie Ettinger and Norm Stulz, two of my absolute favorite people in comedy.
Plus, check this venue! Such an honor to perform at such a big one.
I promise there were actual people there when I went on stage.

See? There they are.
My set was so much fun! Telling jokes for nearly 2,000 people is nothing short of amazing, and I felt so lucky that I got a chance to do so.
Making an important point telling poop jokes.
It was such an honor to share the stage with Norm, Kevin Kramis, Adam Degi, and Jason Benci.

What a blast of a weekend!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy New Year!

Happy 2017!

I rang in the new year with headliner, Norm Stulz, at the Holly Hotel. Not only is he hilarious, but he's one of the nicest people you'll ever know. As I drank champagne after the ball dropped, I couldn't help but feel lucky to ring in the new year on stage, with a good friend. Not only do I absolutely love performing, but I love the opportunities I've had via comedy to meet such amazing people. I feel so very fortunate to have spent another year doing what I love for a living.

I didn't make many resolutions this year as I rarely keep them anyway.

But, I did vow to finally learn the words to Auld Lang Syne.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas 2016

To those who celebrate, I hope you had a lovely Christmas.

When I woke up, I found that Santa was very good to me. Who knew he was a blockhead?

My favorite drag queen even gave me a gift.

If you don't know Coco, I highly recommend that you go ahead and watch this:

The morning then progressed to me eating my weight in these:
If you'd like the recipe for these little slices of heaven, it's here.
I then posed for more pictures of this ball of cuteness than I care to admit.

Oh, how he humors me.

And, I did pose for some pictures with humans as well.

Matching outfits and musical laps for the win.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Car accidents and negative temperatures

Vegan maple cookies are good. Really good. Want to know how I know this?

Because they cause car accidents.

On Thursday, Keith Lenart, and I started on a run of Michigan's upper peninsula, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. We were about two hours into our drive when the weather started to get bad.

After driving through some fairly heavy snow, we pulled off into a rest area. As we were leaving, we were discussing said cookies, and Keith tried to grab one out of the box I was holding. Unfortunately, he took his eyes off the road just long enough to veer into a snowbank.

We laughed about the accident, and counted our lucky stars because the car ended up right between a tree and a road sign stake.

Then, we realized how badly we were stuck. We also realized that the bumper was lying in the snowbank.


The windshield and the offending cookies, which went flying upon impact with the snowbank.
So, we attempted to rock and push the car out. We had a bit of luck at first, but then it wouldn't budge.

At this point, two guys, who clearly took pity on the pathetic downstate residents who were walking around in two feet of snow in Converse, began to help us. For forty-five minutes, we pushed, swore, pushed, swore, pushed, got mud kicked up on us, and swore some more before finally giving up and admitting that we needed to call a tow truck.

Not wanting to spend the money on a truck, we decided to give it one last go.

I closed my eyes and cross my fingers, and Keith gunned it!

I couldn't believe, but the plan worked. We were in the clear!

Or, so we thought.

During our cheers, one of our helpers quickly pointed out that Keith now had a flat tire. Since we hadn't seen much civilization behind us, we feared we were in the middle of no were.

Thankfully, when I checked my phone, we ended up being right near the town of Grayling. Even better? We were a mile away from the exit.

Here's where we were stuck:

When we pulled off in Grayling, Keith popped into a gas station, and the employee told us there was a tire place right on the corner.

Just as we turned into the tire place, they were closing. We quickly got out of the car. and begged them to stay open just a bit longer so they could look at our tire.

Thankfully, they obliged. While they fixed the tire, we tied Keith's bumper back on.
Bang-up job, no?
They ended up fixing the tire for $15, and we were on our way.

We drove in near white out conditions all the way to Sault Ste. Marie, and I don't think I've ever been so afraid in my entire life. I had truly never driven in such awful conditions.

Somehow, as if the stars aligned from the universe, we made it to the show with five minutes to spare.

Phew. Major bullet dodged.

The show was a lot of fun, but I was too tired from being flustered all day to get any pictures.

The next day, we drove to La Crosse in equal amounts of blizzards.

Thus, a black bean burger with avocado was in order to combat the stress of driving for eight hours in such conditions.
Just what the doctor ordered!
After La Crosse, we drove to Sauk Rapids where the temperature was -15! I felt pain in parts of my body that I didn't even know existed.

After the show (where I saw a woman, who was wearing a short-sleeve t-shirt, outside smoking - now, that's a commitment to nicotine!), I thought the weather couldn't get much colder. But, nope, I was wrong! In the morning, we woke up to this:

Actual temperature. I think it was -50 with the windchill!
On Wednesday, I had another show in Minnesota (this time in Windom). And I experienced a first:

Hotels rooms with attached garages.

I've been on the road for quite some time, and I've experienced everything from ultra fancy hotel rooms (complete with mini-bars and robes) to crappy motel rooms that don't even have deadbolts.

At first, the idea seemed kind of bizarre, and then I realized, it was brilliant! Unloading my car without having to deal with the cold? Yes, please!

In Windom, I got to work with Rob Brackenridge, who is an absolute delight!

The first time I met him, we worked together in the Outer Banks, North Carolina. During our week-long gig, we spent the first couple days paddling around in kayaks, and the last couple days dodging a hurricane.

After this trip, I think I much prefer hurricanes to blizzards. At least, they're warm!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Thanksgiving and Florida

On Thanksgiving, I got picked up from the airport and immediately got to work cooking stuffing my face. This was this year's vegan feast:

We didn't go quite as overboard as in previous years as I wasn't home for most of Thanksgiving, and I also had to catch a plane the next day and didn't want to be bloated for the entire ride.

However, this pie would've been worth it:

Friday morning, I boarded a plane to Fort Myers to work at the Laugh In Comedy Cafe. One of the coolest parts about working here is that rather than a hotel, you actually stay on a yacht!

Playing captain for the day.
I opened for my good buddy, Steve Sabo, and we had a blast!

Telling jokes or channeling spirits?
Hello? Is it me you're looking for?

After Fort Myers, I headed up to Orlando for a couple of days. I took a bus from Fort Myers to Tampa, hung out in a pretty train station (pictured below), and then took Amtrak to Orlando.

I stayed in the cutest little bed and breakfast! It was pretty, really close to downtown, and featured a complimentary cocktail hour (yes, please!). Some pictures:

I also got to pretend this was my porch for a couple days:

My room (pictured) was located in the oldest building in all of Orlando.

I may or may not have spent half my time there praying that it wasn't haunted.

It was definitely great to be in the warm weather for a few more days. When I wasn't closing my eyes and pretending not to see ghosts, I checked out downtown Orlando for a while. I'd been to Disney World before, but the downtown was new for me. I love the excitement downtowns have to offer, and the sunshine certainly made it even better!

Going back to the snow is so not going to be easy.