Samantha Irby is the indefatigable blogger behind Bitches Gottta Eat and Irby and Ian, a collaboration with Write Club misanthrope Ian Belknap. Since she takes guff from nobody, her return to the Machete is highly anticipated.
Samantha Irby at her last 'Machete' performance (Photo by Ali Weiss Klingler)
1. What's got your goat this week, and how will you be approaching it in The Paper Machete?
My goat has been firmly gotten by the minotaur slash unicorn also known as the African-American political conservative. In other words, I will be tackling the modern-day minstrel show that is Herman Cain's ascendance to the top of the heap of Republicans vying to wrestle the Presidency out of Barack Obama's wealth-redistributing clutches.
2. If you could be watching any college football game this Saturday instead off ranting at The Paper Machete, it would be...
Whichever teams play "shirts" versus "skins." In other words, do community colleges have competitive football teams?
3. In your entire schooling, what was the subject you in which you performed most poorly? Have you been required to demonstrate knowledge of that subject since?
I hated chemistry with a vengeance. My experiments always failed or exploded wrong and I only passed the class because I'm really good at guessing multiple choice final exams. And cheating off of smart people.
I haven't had a real boyfriend in six years. I OBVIOUSLY should've paid more attention to forming covalent bonds and sticking atoms together.
4. a) Name your favorite Biblical character or New Kid on the Block, and give at least one sentence of explanation. b) Name your least favorite Biblical character or New Kid on the Block and give at least one sentence of explanation.
a) OMGOMGOMG. When I was ten my bedroom was PAPERED with the NKOTB pictures I'd torn out of Bop magazine; I could play "The Right Stuff" on the piano, I had New Kids: notebooks, Trapper Keeper folders, stickers, all of their tapes and cassingles, shoelaces, and I a VIP fan club membership; plus I called the New Kids chat line every single day and ordered their pay-per-view concert without my mother's consent twice. I received a very stern talking-to when she finally received a two hundred dollar cable bill and EIGHT HUNDRED DOLLAR PHONE BILL in the same month, and then she threw out all of my posters and told me to go outside for once and make some real friends. Even as a child I was well aware of my place on the bottom rung of the social ladder, and my crushes reflected that knowledge. So Jonathan, the slightly older not even marginally attractive one openly gay now that he's an adult one, was my absolute favorite. He seemed like he'd be a really good listener.
a) Jordan was the worst, obviously. Too pretty, too popular, nicest singing voice, and ALL the other girls wanted him. Like I said: I AIM LOW.
5. As a member of the Chicago performance-art community, what lucrative career do you now wish you'd chosen to pursue instead?
Am I the only writer jerk who has a real job and isn't trying to support myself on the fourteen cents you make from Google ads? As long as I have a clock to punch, I could do this forever. I'm totally lying. My other choice of career is Immigrant Megamillions Lottery Winner.
The Paper Machete is a weekly live magazine at the Horseshoe in North Center. It's always at 3 pm, it's always on Saturday, and it's always free. Listen to the most recent
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