The How I Learned Series features writers, storytellers, comedians, and other raconteurs holding forth on a different theme. It all happens every last Wednesday of the month, and sometimes more than that, which basically means you will have the best night of your life on those nights, repeatedly.



Totally Righteous

Monday, August 9th, 2010

Okay! Please excuse the delay on my post-show post. Lots going on on the homefront. Plus, I find that trying to tackle my daily to-do list really cuts in to my Oprah time. But how are you? Good, I hope.

I'm not going to lie. Last month's HIL installment, How I Learned I Was Right All Along, was pretty much one of the best shows on earth. In short, because I've got to get back to Oprah, here are some highlights:

#1. Within the first five minutes of the show, a mysterious lady-voice called to me from the shadowy, packed house. She screamed out above the crowd, "You're always right, Blaise!" Should I be making a check out right now? Spell your last name.


#2. For her second How I Learned appearance, the super adorable LYNN HARRIS (Death by Chick Lit), revealed how, contrary to her mother's opinion, Lynn has always been right about her choice of hairstyle--including the pink streaks (2000-2002). Her righteousness was illustrated by a great story of a family trip to Bilbao, complete with a crash course in Basque. Basque is a seriously fucked up language. People don't even realize.


#3. Details' Editor-at-Large and X Saves the World author JEFF GORDINIER does an uncanny impression of KEANU REEVES. He should. He was the real life Bill to Keanu's Ted on an epic quest through L.A. to find the perfect sandwich. Jeff hilariously finds himself wondering if the Proust-loving Keanu is some sort of "stealth genius."


#4. Boys and Girls Like You and Me and God of Animals author ARYN KYLE charmed us with a very funny and perfectly penned essay about entertaining her less-than-perfect cousin. She mentioned Muppet making a few times and it's pretty much all I've thought about ever since. Her new collection of short stories is pretty wonderful. I think you're going to want to go ahead and buy it if you haven't already.


#5. Finally, what can I say about storyteller LESLIE GOSHKO's performance? With assistance from the lovely and demure ROB GORDEN as supreme sign-holder-upper, Leslie's grand finale was a stunning and hysterical full-on reenactment of a real and pivotal waitressing-related moment during her time of "magical" depression. You really had to experience it. Also, please note that the photos below DO NOT depict blackface, I swear. (Nor is this a dramatic staging of the prom scene from Carrie, if that's what you're really worried about.)


So thanks to the super sweet lineup, and thanks to everyone for coming out. I love you guys and I'm so glad you enjoyed the show.

All photos by Jon Boulier. Hire him. He's talented and pretty.

And if you thought July's show was pretty special, you're going to want to go ahead and start preparing yourselves for what's to come this month and next. Just saying...
 
8/25
HOW I LEARNED TO LIVE ON THE ROAD:
TALES OF TRAVELS, TRAVAILS, WANDERLUST + OUT-OF-TOWN HIJINKS

Rachel Shukert (Have You No Shame?; Everything is Going to be Great), Hugh Ryan (The Daily Beast; The Advocate), Melanie Hamlett (The Moth GrandSLAM; Risk!) + Emma Straub (Fly-Over State; Five Chapters)

9/22
HOW I LEARNED TO INHALE: STORIES ABOUT DRUGS
Tony O'Neill
(Sick City; Down and Out on Murder Mile), Royal Young (Fame Shark; The Forward),  Jeff Simmermon (This American Life; The Moth GrandSLAM), Edith Zimmerman (Heeb; New York Magazine's Vulture)