The Write Club is Looking for Your Talent

The Write Club is currently seeking new members! We'll have you writing and on your feet in front of an appreciative audience before you have time to make one more excuse about why you're not doing that already. Contact Jane Morris 310 622 4026 for more information!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

DEADLINE with Paula Killen


July 23rd-26th

Commit to one weekend and you can change your creative life forever.

This crash course will give you the opportunity to write and perform a monologue or performance piece over the course of a single weekend. Even if you have no idea what you might write about when we begin on Friday, you will be performing a completed piece on Monday, guaranteed.

This intensive process will give you the tools to turn any story into a great performance piece.
Working in a group environment you will learn from everyone's experience, spending enormous amounts of time on stage, developing your own voice and stage persona.

Learn techniques to help you memorize your material as well as learn how to better work with an audience and home your abilities as an actor.

Use your new skills to create viable material in class and apply those skills to:
solo pieces,
short/feature films,
TV pitch, shows

You will work hard, but the results will give you the confidence to continue creating.

This weekend will be a kickass good time and at the end of it all, you can invite your friends to see you perform at the fanaticSalon.
Friday July 23rd 2-5pm
Saturday July 24th 12-4pm
Sunday July 25th 12-4pm
Monday July 26 5-7pm
Performance Monday July 26th 8pm

Class space is limited/first come first served

Your check/money order or paypal payment secures your spot.

Call 213 400 7953 for more information about the class or to enroll.

Or Call the fanaticSalon


"I've taken Deadline with Paula Killen three times, and each time I've created a new solo performance piece that I've been able to add to my international touring repertoire right away. Paula gives clear and straightforward direction along with great notes and feedback to keep you moving forward throughout the workshop. She has a particular genius for pulling stories out of people who don't think they have any stories. If you ever need to get your butt kicked and get a piece out, this is the thing for you."-Antonio Sacre

" Paula's class is the perfect fusion of artistic expression and catharsis. Paula has a unique ability to pull out your inner-most thoughts and somehow magically make you believe that its ok to spill your guts across the stage. Maybe its her unwavering confidence in her student's, or maybe its that she admits to being as crazy as the rest of us. Either way, her class makes for a life-changing experience." -Elena Zaretsky

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Upcoming Shows

July 2nd!
Ramsey Brown
Kate O'Neal
Jim Rasfeld
and MORE!


Sobbing because it's $10? Pull yourself together, our shows are worth every penny. But you can get in with a lovely 2 for 1 $5 each by finding a Write Club member in the lobby with a coupon for you.

The ImprovOlympic West
6366 West Hollywood Blvd
Hollywood 90028
Call: 323 262 7560

Visit us on our FACEBOOK page so we can SEE YOU COMING!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Who Are These People?

The Write Club members
Click on the performers name to find even more!

Paula Killen
Writer/performer/instructor, Paula currently directs the popular performance collective, The Write Club (regulars at the IO West, Celebration Theatre, FanaticSalon and currently performing at the Comedy Central Workspace). She also facilitates writing/performing workshops at the Improv Olympic, the Actor's Gang, The Comedy Union, and Wordspace. Killen is a private coach for many different types of projects, including Adria Tennor (Strip Search, Acme LA), Meera Simhan (Miss India America, Acme LA), Kimleigh Smith (Totally Kimleigh, fanaticSalon, NYC Tour) , Sarah Thyre (author Dark at the Roots), Melanie Hutsell (Party Mom, Upright Citizens Brigade) and the Quarterly Report (multiple shows, Highways Performance Space, Fake Gallery, Evidence Room) and more.

Killen's two person show (with Lisa Orkin) Fully Loaded sold out for over a year at the Upright Citizen's Brigade and went on to become a feature film directed by Shira Piven and Executive produced by Adam McKay/Sanchez Productions. Killen is also writing a feature film for Will Ferrell/Paramount Pictures. Currently, Killen is co-producing Mom's the Word with Cathy Schenkelberg at the El Portal Forum Theatre in North Hollywood.

Antonio Sacre

Antonio Sacre is an internationally touring, award-winning solo performance artist based in Los Angeles. A two-time Best In Fringe Festival winner at the New York International Fringe Theater Festival, Sacre has created eight solo shows, performing them to critical and popular acclaim at the New York International Fringe Festival, PS 122 and PS NBC in New York City; the San Francisco Fringe Theater Festival in San Francisco; the HBO Workspace, The Comedy Central Workspace, the Knitting Factory, Edgefest, and Area 51 in Los Angeles; the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Rhinoceros Theater Festival in Chicago; the Kennedy Center and the Smithsonian in Washington DC; and various festivals internationally.

Antonio Sacre has been with the Write Club for the last year.

Jane Morris Founder of the Second City ETC stage in Chicago, Jane is a writer, performer and director. She has taught improvisation for the Second City and in her own venues for the past 20 years. Dubbed "The Harriet Tubman of Comedy" by friends, Jane and her husband Jeff Michalski have owned and operated UpFront Comedy and the Comedy Underground in Santa Monica and is currently the owner and managing director of the fanaticSalon in Culver City. She has been performing with the Write Club for over two years.

For Jane's full list of television and movie credits, visit her IMBD page.

Bess Fanning Since moving to Los Angeles in 1996 Bess Fanning has had television roles. She has been seen on NBC's MY NAME IS EARL (white trash female wrestler), PROMISED LAND (a harried HMO doctor) and a recurring role as Karen's sassy assistant on the critically acclaimed ONCE & AGAIN on ABC. She also recently co-starred on the Web Series “Quarterlife,” directed by Eric Stoltz. In the film short "The Recipe," she played a wife who exacts revenge on her philandering husband by adding a special ingredient to the lasagna. Some of her commercial appearances include Progresso Soup, Singulair, Special K, and Hardees. New additions to her theatre resume include Susie the nurse in WIT, Nadine and Juanita in DEARLY DEPARTED, and Lovey the Fairy Godmother in LOVE IN PIECES. Bess has written several one woman shows and performed them locally in Los Angeles. She also recently wrote, Executive Produced, and starred in “An Excellent Choice,” a short film that was accepted to three film festivals in 2007, including the Newport Beach Film Festival and San Diego International Film Festival. For more information on the film, visit

Bess has been performing with the Write Club for two years.

Clara York began writing poems and leaving them on her mother’s bed during an identity crisis at age 10. She wrote and produced her first play, ‘Pressure Points’ for Theater of NOTE. Her second play, “The Stain” received critical acclaim during its run at The Alliance Theater. She appeared with really big hair on Night Court, Wings, Mad TV, CSI, Days of Our Lives and some horror flicks before moving to the bay area where her husband attended law school. Clara didn’t tell her agent about the move and commuted to auditions in L.A., also working as a petite model, and in commercials and theater in San Francisco. After 3 years in the Bay Area, Clara moved to Chicago where she enjoyed her richest and most profound theater experiences. She performed with the Terrapin Theater Co., at CafĂ© Voltaire, and at the Red Bones Theater. While in Chicago, Clara also guest starred on “The Untouchables.” After returning to L.A. shortly before September 11, Clara and her husband wrote and produced the full length feature ‘Man with a Red Moustache.’ It was carpe diem times two: the world might be ending and they were going to have a baby. After the movie was in the can, they went to China to get their daughter. Now Clara happily receives notes and stories written by her daughter age 8 and braces herself for her daughter’s upcoming identity crisis.

Jessica Lee Williamson is one of the Write Club's newest members. She grew up on Maryland's Eastern shore, in a small town best known for it's super sized Dairy Queen and Annual Water Foul Festival. She graduated from The Second City Conservatory in Los Angeles, but has yet to earn a bachelors degree. She loves making things and writing too, you can see more of her work

James Schneider has performed his monologues and songs in Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles and Brussels, Belgium. His "Clowns, Goddesses & Tough Guys" played with a live funk band, which also released two CDs of original songs. James has written and/or directed several short films, including "Roadside Sex", "The Seventh Man" and "In Search of Work". (Watch James' short films here.) As an actor, he appears in "Oceans 12", guest starred on the series "The Untouchables", and navigates his way to nowhere in "Brit In". Additionally, he has done improv with the Upright Citizens Brigade and in Chicago with the Improv Olympic and the Annoyance Theatre. James performed in countless Chicago theatre productions, such as the long-running Barto Productions' "Under Milk Wood", and several with Famous Door Theatre, including the American premiere of "Conquest of the South Pole". James has performed with the Write Club since January 2009, and is also the de facto Write Club photographer.

Lauri Fraser is a voice over actress, writer and creator of "I Love a Good Story". She is the voice of Jane Jetson and can be heard on cartoons, animated features and commercials, and most recently as the voice of Earth on Eikosphere. Just as Superman paid the bills as a newspaper reported, Lauri's real world disguise is as a hair stylist and colorist in Beverly Hills. She is also a real cool chick, according to her imaginery friend Carlotta. Bookings: Imperium 7 323 931 9099. Hair: Tina Cassaday's Hair Studio: 310 271 1591.

Meleney Humphrey aspires to walk in Jane Morris’s footsteps since Jane was one of Melaney's first teachers at Second City way back when. There, she followed Jane to Upfront Comedy where Melanie began her illustrious stage career.

Starring in an off off (Award winning) Broadway production of “Blake da Muscial”. She has toured with the Troubadour Theater Company and starred in such productions as “Romeo Hall & Juliet Oats” and “Midsummer Saturday Night Fever’s Dream”. She played a porn star in “Shitty Day” and won an award for “Butt Pirates of the Caribbean”. Yes, adult content is what she loves best. Stand up is where she shines and doing that for the last 10 years has brought her to the Write Club (4 years ago) under the direction of Paula Killen. Paula has taught and has inspired her to write her bawdy stories more …eloquently.

Shelley Wenk Shelley Wenk is an actor, a director and sometimes a writer. In addition to working with Write Club, she has done lots of improv, was a writer and performer with the sketch comedy group Foe Pa, and was a founding member of Sacred Fools Theater. Now she's a mother, which means less time for all that other stuff for now. But it ain't over 'till it's over.

Lisa Ann Orkin

Writer-performer Lisa Ann Orkin started her career as a classically-trained actress in London . Then to Germany , acting and dancing in various German State Theatre productions, including Evita, Loves Labors Lost, and The Boyfriend.

Arriving in Los Angeles, Lisa joined The Renegade Theatre Co. and Actors Alley, performing in everything from Shakespeare to musical comedy.

On a dare, Lisa auditioned for KFI AM640’s Stand-up Comedy Contest and won a case of fat-free wieners. Soon Lisa was paid regular at The Comedy Store on the Sunset Strip, leading to numerous episodic television appearances. Guest-starring roles on Becker, Titus, and a recurring role on Keenan & Kel paid the bills. ABC Nightly News featured Lisa with Peter Jennings in a politics and comedy discussion.

In the past few years, Lisa has enjoyed her popularity as a Comedic Storyteller, performing in such live LA venues as UCB, Tongue and Groove, Story Salon, Tarfest, Max Ten, and NPR Radio.

Lisa has also developed and staged a series of Storytelling / Rock & Roll Musicals.

Teetering on the Edge (El Portal Theatre, Gardenia, NOHO Arts Festival), Housewife in Blue (Billboard Live, Gardenia, White Fire Theatre) and her current show, Sex, Drugs and Minivans (Fake Gallery, Two Roads Theatre) have all enjoyed critical acclaim.

Most recently, Lisa completed filming of her feature, Fully Loaded, based on the stage production of the same name. Lisa co-wrote and stars with Paula Killen in the film, produced by Adam McKay and Will Ferrell.

Rose Vaswani is a actor/writer of 20 years that has worked in Puerto Rico, New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. Her television appearances include Law and Order, Everybody Hates Chris, 100 Centre Street where she got to meet the wonderful Sydney Lumet and Third Watch. She’s also appeared in numerous commercials. The writing started way back in highschool where she wrote and performed her own award winning monologues. Rose has worked off and on for the past 10 years with Paula Killen and she has been a member of the Write Club since 2008.

About Our Work

Founded by writer, director and performer Paula Killen in 2007, The Write Club is a workshop comprised of approximately 25 very talented writer/performers. Originally a group of women of all races, the Write Club has recently grown to include men.

All of the members of Write Club work on their solo pieces in this collective environment, committing to their work through re-writes, edits, final staging and, finally, live performance, off book and fully realized.

Each artist is encouraged to find their own voice, capitalize on personal experiences, explore characters and commit to the unique experience of real communication with the audience.

Paula Killen explains, “I created original work for years in Chicago (and)...had hoped to inspire folks to move towards their best selves—the message, the meaning, the humor, the heartbreak—all as a way to commune with the planet, have a good time on stage and take their careers back from the thieves that say a crumby TV guest spot is the only validation an actor can expect to achieve. A way to stay sharp and accessible.”

The Write Club performs on the first Friday of each month at the Improv Olympic West in Hollywood and periodically at the fanaticSalon in Culver City and the Celebration Theater in Hollywood.

How do I join?

Give us a call. Sit in on class once. The Write Club meets every Tuesday evening at 7pm in downtown Los Angeles at Art Share 801 E 4th St. 90013. The fee is only $100 per month.

Call 622 2046 and talk to Jane Morris or click on Paula's picture to talk with her.

The Write Club at Work

Watch the Write Club at work.

Jane Morris "The New Head Theory" February 2009 at the IO West Monthly Write Club Show

Clara York performs "Fire in the Hole" March 2010 at the IO West.

Bess Fanning
"Hating Rachel Ray" performed at the February 2009 IO West Monthly Write Club Show

James Schneider "Penifesto" performed at the August 2009 IO West Monthly Write Club show footage shot by RustyCanProductions

Testify! Our Audience Speaks

“The Write Club is the right club for exploring new literary and performance vistas: internal and external.

The writer/performers find out things they never knew about themselves and exposing that stuff in eye-opening ways.

They think before blabbing; so unusual in today’s world. What a concept!” -- Edie McClurg

Amazing Writers and Performers! Book these guys wherever you can! Their stuff is deep, fresh, hysterical, moving and super relate-able. They dig deep and leave their hearts on the stage. Always a memorable experience. Not to be missed! Wendee Lee

I've seen three of their performances and each time I've been riveted and amazed. The writing, personal stories that through the talent of the actors, broaden ones understanding and subsequently become universal themes, are profound and often very funny as well. A remarkably gifted group that will nourish all who attend. Mary Presby

The show I saw at The Hudson was the most entertaining show I saw in all 2009. Hilarious! Jamie Franklin

They are amazing, authentic, and a lovely breath of fresh air. The show is diverse, energetic, and definitely comes from the heart. How do they memorize all of that stuff?!! Very very talented people. Melba Watson

Went to see the show and LOVED it. It made my husband and I have faith in going to the theater again. We laughed our tushies off and plan to take our non-theater friends and family to one of their shows so they can know how great LA theater can be. Maria McCann

Seen the Write Club lately? Leave your praise and snarky opinions in the comment section below.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Written by the Write Club

Spring Awakening

By Paula Killen

I don't care how old you are -- everything wakes up in spring. Every spring reminds you of the one before and you can't imagine ever sleeping through another winter again. And when you are young, spring affects you like candy in your pockets.

I don't remember if the things that happened to me while growing up are real or just punched up parts of little experiences. Ultra-color-washed day dreams, that you take as real because all new ideas, like the ones you have for the first time, plant the seeds of things that will eventually become true enough.

If memory serves me, all the colors in 1978 were brighter and it smelled differently too. I had the same nose; a gap between my front teeth and my friends called me "notes", short for "no tits." But I had a flat belly, good legs and a tan. I stared at everyone, but mostly teenage girls. I knew that I would be one of them soon. I'd fill out a bikini, talk to boys, dance to the radio, pierce something and pay very little attention to 11-year-old kids like me.

My younger brother, Jefferson, was nine and we got along when I wanted to. I liked an audience and he was quiet, shy and game for anything. So, when my parents said that we were going to Mexico for spring vacation, all we could think about was buying fireworks, sneaking beers and going para-sailing off the back of a speed boat. Dad said they had para-sailing in Mexico. Dad said they had everything in Mexico.

The only drag was that we had to take my Uncle Merv and Aunt Margy with us, in our car. They lived in a house that was never entirely furnished and all I knew about Uncle Merv was that he never held a job very long and he had a big old gold tooth right in the front of his mouth. Margy was a second wife that everyone said was better than the first, but to my mind she was no prize either. We called her "plaster brows" because she painted them on so thick.

My Uncle Merv wanted to drive and my Aunt Margy said that she had to sit next to him in the front seat. My parents were suddenly relegated to the back seat of our station wagon and my brother and I were stuffed in the trunk with the luggage. Our natural family order was shifting and I wasn't for it, so when my aunt demanded that I change my shorty top before we got to the border, I ignored her completely.

At the border between Texas and Mexico, my parents went for Visas and my brother and I wandered around. I had never been to any foreign place before and I had no idea why men were following us, tapping my brother on the shoulder and making unmistakable comments. Sex talk reads in any language. My brother was totally freaked out and I was nervous, but suddenly awake. I walked slowly back to the car trying to catch all the glances like fireflies in a jar. I knew I'd never get this kind of attention back in The States -- after all, they had teenage girls there.

Leaving the border in the car, Jefferson couldn't wait to blurt out the whole sordid story, which made my Uncle drive faster and my Aunt remind us all that she warned me not to wear that shorty top.

After one million years, we arrived at our designated condo, hidden in a compound of condos, under layers of rubber tree plants and right on the beach. We had the best of both worlds -- the comfort of a condo and the exotic landscape of Mexico.

It rained every day and my mother got sick. There was no para-sailing and no fish in the sea according to my Uncle, who hadn't even had a nibble. Even fish can figure out a guy like Merv.

I ignored my brother and just walked up and down the beach all day, waiting for something to happen.

At night, we could hear the music coming from the bar down the way. My family went there during the cocktail hour for "The Shrimp Parade." Young men in fluffy white shirts would come to your table with shrimps on a burning skewer, blow them out and then serve them one by one to interested parties.

I saw one lady open up her frosted pink mouth and let one of the boys drop a shrimp right in. This was not America, after all, these were sexy Mexican people, serving sexy Mexican shrimps to tourists who could only hope to have some experience that would make them feel sexy too.

One night towards the end of the trip, my begging paid off and my parents let me out of the condo for a walk around the compound. I went directly to the bar. All the shrimp hubbub was over and a little band had begun to play plinky, tango type music. I sat on the sand, close to the band and tried to act like a teenager looking for action. Hot teenage action.

It was warm enough to take off my sweater and the sand was whiter in the moon light than during the day. My hair was white, my teeth were white and I had on a white T-shirt and shorts. And remember I had a tan.

When the busboy would look at me I would turn away, like I wasn't looking at him. I liked the way he looked, young and not too lecherous. He came up to me and asked in broken English if I wanted something? I told him that I didn't have any money by turning the pockets of my shorts inside out. He took my hand and walked me to the back door of the bar, by the kitchen. He made some gestures that told me to wait for him and he was gone long enough for me to worry about what it was I was waiting for.

He came back with two glasses of dark rum with fat limes floating on the top. Made the back of my neck ache just to smell it. He held my hand and we drank in silence, looking at each other a lot and smiling. I put my drink down and started digging for a Kleenex in my pocket because my eyes were watering.

His hand followed mine into my pocket. He smashed my fingers and thrust both our hands towards the inside of my thigh. I did not know what to say -- he wouldn't have understood me anyhow. My whole body felt like I was being stung by a swarm of bees. I pulled in the opposite direction, trying to get on my feet -- I'd leave my sweater behind if I had to!

After all, I was not a teenager yet, but spring pushes young things forward into the dangerous arms of nature. Ready or not.

I was twisting in this strange dance with the Mexican boy when my brother Jefferson came down the beach with his flashlight and fireworks. He was looking for me. And even though my brother was a geek and a pest and a kid, I screamed his name, "Hey Jefferson, over here!"

The Mexican boy froze as my little brother shinned his flashlight right in his face and asked me, "What are you doing?" Nothing. Something. You'll get it later. Let's go back. I want to light fireworks off the porch of the condo and look at the ocean from a safe distance. Go to bed early.

How could I have known that I was awake and would never really sleep again without spring planted deeply in my pockets?

by Lauri Fraser

As a child, I got all the love a nurturing that my parents could have possibly given me. It was not enough. My Dad wanted a perfect kid. I wanted to be that perfect kid. I was a reflection of him and I reflected imperfection. He got critical, and I got hungry. Hungry for his attention. Hungry to be accepted. Hungry to adored. I had to fill that void. I wasn’t old enough to pick sex, drugs, or rock and roll, so I picked sex’s closest equivalent for a kid…. FOOD.

At the age of five, I used to lie down on the floor by the bathroom and talk to my Dad through the crack at the bottom between the carpet and the door. My Dad was always working and I’d be in bed by the time he got home so this was my one chance to talk to him. I’d ask him all sorts of questions. He’d eventually get fed up and say “Lauri, I’m going potty.” I guess this meant that I was supposed to leave, but instead I’d just be quiet for a while and then start up again. One day while I was being quiet, I noticed his trousers lying over the small chest of drawers. I put my hand in every pocket. Just filling time while I waited for him. I found his wallet and some change. Change, I knew could buy food. I put the change in the pocket of my cowgirl outfit. I wore my cowgirl on every morning that I could until it was so filthy that my Mom would have to sneak it out of my room. I had the shirt with tassels on the back, the skirt, boots, holster, and the hat.

I would walk my Dad out to the car, and I’d wave good-bye to him until his silver Thunderbird, disappeared over the hill to the left of our track home in Monterey Park. Well that morning as he drove away, the Helm’s truck came up over the hill to the right sounding it’s unmistakable Helm’s truck horn. The Helm’s truck was a bakery on wheels, kind of like the Ice Cream Truck but it was filled with cookies and donuts and pastries. Heaven for a five year old. Okay, for THIS five year old. I felt the coins in my pocket and shot my hand up in an uncontrollable victory salute waving him down. There he was in all his glory, The Helm’s Man. He held the key to that great big door at the back of the truck that protected the precious cargo that lie inside waiting for ME. I could feel the butterflies in my stomach as I often did when I was about to tell a big fib. After all it was just ME. Without my Mom. It would have never been my Dad. He wouldn’t let me eat sweets because he didn’t want a fat kid. In fact he would make us Avocado or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and give the other kids each a whole sandwich and cut mine in fourths, give me one of the fourths and tell me to come back and ask him if I wanted more. Did I want more? Was I so abnormal? Why wasn’t I treated like the other kids? A quarter of a sandwich? Of course I wanted more. That was the beginning of my never being able to get enough of anything. Especially food.

In fact I would be engulfed in an epicurean delight as soon as I could tear myself away from whatever was causing me to feel anything but good. (Oh, wait a minute. GOOD, had it’s own set of set me offs.) This included my first wedding where I made sure that a napkin filled with stuffed Kishka (a Jewish delicacy. A long thick tubular sausage- type skin stuffed with a greasy vegetable- type stuffing) accompanied me into the limo. I sucked out the stuffing in a lady like manner as not to disturb the sausage skin being the vegetarian that I was. All this while sitting next to my new groom, who perceived this as sexually exciting. A promise of things to come. And now here I was in front of the Helm’s man. The man of my dreams. He pulled out that long tray of cookies and donuts and the smell lifted me off my feet. I picked two sugar jellys and two twisted glazed, and cookies with sprinkles and chocolate cupcakes and when I handed him the money he said “Oh you must be having a party.” and I said “Yes we are. “ The next day after waving my Dad good-bye over the hill, my little neighborhood friends were there with me when the Helm’s man came. I picked more this time because I had more money. My Dad was always pretty cheap but donuts were too.A Good time was had by all, and everyone liked me, which thrilled my budding little people pleaser to no end. I had a real thing going here, I was the Pied Piper of Monterey Park with a song in my heart and a sugar high in my metabolism, until my Mom decided to stop the Helm’s man one morning. She was having a couple of PTA ladies over and the Helm’s man commented, unbeknownst to me, on how he hoped that she enjoyed all the goodies for all the parties she’d been having. The following day, it was me in my cow girl outfit, the bathroom door conversation and business as usual, only this time when I waved my father good-bye over the hill, he had instead gone around the block and caught me red handed with a sprinkle cookie in wax paper, in my hand and my friends waiting eagerly to pick there morning fare. I felt like G. Gordon Liddy when the Watergate cops caught him breaking in. My Dad walked up and stared down at me….”Open your hand.” I put my head down and looked up and shamefully opened my little sweaty palm revealing 55 cents in one hand and a sprinkle cookie in wax paper, hiding behind my cowgirl skirt, in the other. I was busted. At this point I was all alone, My friends had all but scattered and I was quietly but swiftly ushered into the house, gripping tightly to the sprinkle cookie wrapped in wax paper and still intact. My only solace for what could be an eternity. He’d be watching my every move and even though I, could get every cookie out of the package without hearing a crinkle or a crackle coming from the wrapper, when it came to listening to me in the kitchen, HE could hear a baby mouse peeing on a blotter. My father was not a mean man by any sense of the word, but I had hit a nerve. He didn’t like fat people. They disgusted him. A Nobel Prize winner? His favorite Aunt? If they were fat, he didn’t want them in the house. Oh, he’d put up with it, but he kept his distance. Even my boyfriends. If they were handsome and fit, they could have robbed us blind and he’d defend them, but let them have one ounce of fat toppling over their pants and they were losers. He didn’t particularly like this quality about himself, but it didn’t seem to stop him. I’m sure that he had nightmares of me coming home with my hands full of shopping bags from Lane Bryant and a chili dog with all the trimmings hanging out of my mouth while trying to give him a kiss. I’m not sure what he was angrier about. That I stole the money or that I was starting to get chubby and he didn’t know what to do about it. He never hit us but sometimes we got the towel. The Rat-tail. That day I got the Rat-tail. He’d wind the towel up and fling it just barely grazing us but stinging us just enough to let us know that what we did was NOT okay and not to forget it. I didn’t.

Now in his eighties, you can still see the handsome in his face and HIS tummy just topples over HIS pants and I watch him as he scours the refrigerator for what may be HIS only solace. Oh, sure, I’m tempted to swat him with the Rat-tail, but I manage to suppress that. I still have dreams that I hear that oh so familiar horn and go running towards the door. But after therapy, diets, meditation, and exercise, I’ve managed to suppress that urge, too. But if I truly look deep within my soul and am absolutely honesty, I musty admit that NOTHING compares, to a sprinkle cookie from the Helms man….or two sprinkle cookies.

"If Only I Liked Strippers"

James Schneider

If Only I Liked Strippers from James Schneider on Vimeo.


by James Schneider

If Only I Liked Strippers

Like you do, like you say you do

I don’t need no artificial sweetener

Don’t wanna watch like Chauncey Gardener

Cause if I look but cannot touch

It don’t mean much, in fact it’s worse

To sit and suffer, let’s call it as it is

As she warms her hands in what once was my purse


Take it off when it means something

Meet me halfway when we’re alone

Take it off when it’s not so safe

Cause I don’t wanna bitch, but I do want to moan

You’re friends with twenty strippers… on FaceBook

You’re a V.I.P. to the Industry

But at the end of the night, hey, you’re just talking to me

Cause if you look, but can’t be pleased

How fun is that? In fact it’s a tease

She can talk to you like a shrink or a nurse

But when the show dies down you still got the guy’s curse

When the show dies down you still got the guy’s curse


Take it off when it means something

Meet me halfway when we’re alone

Take it off when it’s not so safe

Cause I don’t wanna bitch, but I do want to moan

She can talk to you like a priest in the Church

You connect with her til you’re ready to burst

Maybe I’m being a guy, thinking last things first --

But the tune won’t change til up drives my hearse

No, my tune won’t change til up drives my hearse


Take it off when it means something

Meet me halfway when we’re alone

Take it off when it’s not so safe

Cause I don’t wanna bitch, but I do want to moan

If I wanted to chat I’d pick up the phone

Every dog has his day, but still wants his bone

The courtesy van’s in the white parking zone

I don’t want to bitch, I’d rather both have us moan

If Only I Liked Strippers…

© 2010 James Schneider words & music

Shot and edited by RustyCan Productions. See our sidebar for more information on how to contact RustyCan, the best team for filming comedy we've found!