Pillow Talk This Weekend! (Video)

Pillow Talk This Weekend! (Video)

PT has its first LIVE show this weekend! 

You are not going to want to miss out — there will be pageantry, drama AND a chance for me to win a $2,000 grant — which The Knight Foundation will match.

I need you there to vote for me.

What does this money mean? It means funding season two of PT and a fabo launch party at a soon-to-be-selected performance space. Mystery! Intrigue!

Get your tickets here. BBQ and drinks will be served.

Thanks to Project Art Aid for selecting me as a finalist for the Queen City Soup grant!

Need more convincing? Here’s a little video to rock (the bed) vote.


Pam Ann Takes Flight in Charlotte

Pam Ann Takes Flight in Charlotte

Pam Ann

If any of you know me at all, you realize drag queens are my inspiration for being. That’s why I love Pam Ann so much: She has been mistaken for a drag queen and happens to be a biological woman. Comedian Caroline Reid created the persona of a sassy ’60s Pan Am flight attendent in 1996 and has been performing around the world ever since. She’s coming to Charlotte today with her one-woman show The Pam Ann Cockpit Tour 2013. She took a moment out of her busy flight schedule to chat with me. Check it out in this week’s Creative Loafing, in print and online!

My Night As Andy Warhol

My Night As Andy Warhol

Hi, I'm Andy Warhol
Andy Warhol,
Andy Warhol Visits a Law Firm. 2013. Instagram.

Andy Warhol. What was first a Halloween costume at the office turned into my alter ego for the next two weeks. The best part of all of it — besides making judgmental faces at people and asking them to say words that describe what I want to say — was that the entire costume was already in my closet. I’ve had that long blonde wig for years. I just pinned it up into Warhol’s signature bob. For research, I watched a fantastic three-hour documentary called “Andy Warhol – The Complete Picture” on YouTube. I studied Warhol’s cadenance, his reactions to news and people and of course his pop art.

Check out the results in the Arts Alive section of The Charlotte Observer and an extended version with antics from the cutting room floor. My videographer Donald Devet is everything, by the way.

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New on Huffington Post: Boycotting Barilla? The Top 5 LGBT-Friendly Pastas

New on Huffington Post: Boycotting Barilla? The Top 5 LGBT-Friendly Pastas

Chef Boyardee

Boycotting Barilla because of its recent anti-LGBT comments but still love good pasta? I’ve got the solution for you: My latest on the Huffington Post names the five pastas and one sauce that will have you saying, “I’ll have a side of equality with my rigatoni, please!”

Out of Office Reply

Out of Office Reply

beachfeetSome people have asked me over the last year, “Joanne, why don’t I see your byline as much?” Others have said, “Joanne, why are you always at the beach or eating a hot dog or doing the George Michael in public restrooms?” Still others don’t know my name and only ask if I would like the small or medium curly fry. These are all valid questions and I have one very good answer for the first two.

I am writing my first novel. 

For me, the ongoing process of creating an entire new world filled with engaging characters is a lot like having imaginary friends. You walk down the bread aisle and think, “Would my heroine eat garlic toast as a snack instead of a before dinner carb item?” or “The hero wouldn’t wear those chinos because he would say his ass looks too big in them.” Before I know it, I’m so lost in thought that my Harris Teeter grocery store cashier is asking me for the third time whether I want paper or plastic. They just want to throw my bunch spinach at me, and really at that point I would have it coming.

These are the conversations I’m having with myself these days, which my good writer friend Keia thinks is hilarious, thank goodness. I have allowed myself to scribble notes and stuff them in my purse. I will start to drift off to sleep and realize, “Dang, she should hobble into the room, not crawl.” Then I write it down on the notepad by my bed in the dark, so when I wake up in the morning I am sure not to understand what I wrote at all. It looks like a gremlin has written an illegible note to get more cream of shoe.

Writing a novel gives you permission to be weird. Well in my case, maybe just a shade or fifteen weirder than usual. It has always been my dream to be an author, the kind that pitches her publisher, gets the green light and then goes off to her beach house for three months to write the book. I am working on this dream every day while in my Andy Warhol t-shirt, typing out words through moments when I’d rather be napping to “Sex and the City” season three.


This would be the part where I’d ask you fine readers what your dream is, but I don’t have time for that. I’m still trying to figure out what I meant by saying my main character should foot the chair muffin.

Oh, and to answer that third question: Medium curly fry.

Little Crittering on Isle of Palms

Little Crittering on Isle of Palms

How was your Labor Day weekend? No, I haven’t had a stroke from licking sand off a hot dog. I realize it’s incredibly gauche to ask about your weekend when it’s the Friday before a new Saturday. I really just want to tell you about my ah-mazing non-laborious holiday. 

How was my weekend? Why thank you for asking! My pretend husband was away on business, so this housewife had to take a solo adventure to the mecca of nachos and pralines: Charleston, South Carolina. My parents worried about me driving alone to meet my friend and her family there. I assured them I don’t always drive with my knees. I only do that when I’m texting. 

Here’s what to do if you decide to drive alone to crash someone else’s family vacation:

1) Blast the gayest music on the planet in the car: I blame doing one too many Richard Simmons workout videos as a child on my love for fabulous with a capital LOUS music. Start your journey with the classics: Cher, Madonna, Donna Summer, Peter Allen. Add Lady Gaga. Stir in drag queen realness from RuPaul and Lady Bunny. Scissor Sisters. Because here’s the deal: It’s just you in that tin can you call an automobile. There’s no one to say, “I want to hear John Mayer now” and make you feel dead inside.

Barb and me2) Endanger the life of your friend’s mother-in-law: My friend’s family planned to eat at the Subway drive-thru for lunch when I arrived. This was unacceptable to me. Vacation is a time to indulge in exquisite food, not cardboard masquerading as sandwich bread. I was going to Taco Boy. My friend’s delightful mother-in-law Barb asked if I wanted company. Considering she had only met me twenty minutes before, I thought it was pretty gutsy of her to jump in the car with a relative stranger. The Folly Beach location had no parking, so we went to the one on Huger Street. Barb soon realized this restaurant was not in the best neighborhood. Her eyes began to well with regret as we drove past crumbling sidewalks and tall weeds growing in abandoned patches of land. She told me it looked like “an industrial area.” My hands were sweating as I insisted the nachos were amazing. A near-death experience would only make them taste better.

3) Get your friend’s mother-in-law drunk so she forgets about said endangering: Once we got onto Taco Boy’s patio with the giant fan, bossa nova music and elephant ear plants, Barb no longer needed whatever the equivalent of an Amber Alert is for seniors. I told her to get the Frozen Screwdriver and we split the nachos. A well-travelled sixty-something, she told me with ultimate certainty that these were the best nachos she’d ever eaten. On the way back to the hotel, my bikini top popped off under my beach shirt and the GPS got us lost in yet another shady part of town. Was Barb in fear for her life for most of this lunch trip? Absolutely. But she also had the best nachos of her life. Worth it.

4) Pretend you like historic houses when you really want pralines: My friend could tour historical sites in the hot sun until you sweated to death. She wouldn’t notice right away if you collapsed behind her because she would be too busy explainingHistoric sitings the difference between a graveyard and a cemetary. My only contribution was saying I liked the pineapple tops on the pillars and a coral front door.

5) Little Critter on Isle of Palms: As a kid, I was obsessed with a computer game starring a fuzzy creature-child named Little Critter. He would eat a hot dog on the beach in a scene I replayed over and over again. He made these satisfied munching sounds that ignited a Pavlovian response inside of me. Thankfully my mom was always ready with a Hebrew National Hot Dog. This time, a middle-aged man who worked at the Isle of Palms County Park concession stand was like my mom, except he charged me $3.50 per wiener. That Nathan’s hot dog and me had our way with each other on the beach that afternoon, as you can see in this video. I call that kind of behavior Little Crittering.

Look It’s Joanne’s After Pride Extravaganza!

Look It’s Joanne’s After Pride Extravaganza!

I knocked something off my bucket list this week: Marching in the Charlotte Pride Parade in white hot pants and a rainbow boa. This was the first pride parade in the Queen City since 1994. With a super fabulous nickname like Queen City, who knows why it took 19 years for the parade to come back — an issue I explore in my latest for Creative Loafing.

If you just want to see me in my hot shorts with fabulous people, head over to my roundup of pictures and extra gossip on the Huffington Post. I won’t judge.

Happy Labor Day! xoxo

New on Huffington Post: The Charlotte I Almost Had

Charlotte City Skyline

Wanting to slap Governor Pat McCrory. Fearing uterus enslavement. Feeling insulted about the government offering cookies to compensate for taking away your rights.

These are things I never thought I’d be angry about when I covered the Democratic National Convention in my home city of Charlotte, North Carolina in 2012. As we approach the one-year mark on that week,  I tell you why that time was so important to me and my fellow progressive Charlotteans in my latest Huffington Post blog.

And how we, if ever, can get that feeling back.

The Lusty Fat Lady’s Last-Minute Summer Guide*

Virginia BeachIf you have recently thought to yourself, “Maybe I do need a therapist,” you’ve probably been enjoying a wild summer like me.

I ate too much, spiked my blood sugar levels and then beached myself on the sand in a red one-piece swimsuit. I have one more trip left in me, but before I jet off to yet another exotic locale (read: a place where they let me mix my pralines in nachos), here’s what you need to do before summer’s out — and those damn public school buses are back on the streets endangering our nation’s children:

1) Eat a crabcake sandwich alone by a window. When my Pretend Husband and I went to Virginia Beach in late June, he had to work for a few hours a day. (Technically, I was stowing away on his business trip.) That left his Pretend Wife alone to forage on the oceanfront boardwalk. Waterman’s Surfside Grille was there for me like a willing, supple-skinned pool boy. My server Jessica gave me a crabcake sandwich with meat fresh from the Chesapeake Bay. It tasted as if the heat of the ocean cooked the crab and Jessica just plucked it out of the water ready to eat. I topped off lunch with a piece of cool Key Lime Pie. Then I fell into a coma at The Schooner Inn, a sleepy hotel with loud Hibiscus-patterned comforters.

2) Have your Pretend Husband wake you with an upper. I finally emerged from my coma not from the brightness of my sheets, but because Pretend Husband burst through the door, told me to hold out my hand, and put cinnamon toast popcorn from Jody’s Popcorn into my palm. I was able to sit up and face yet another obstacle: Dinner.

3) Make your own shitty pralines. Pretend Husband and I were going to take a day trip to Charleston one weekend in July, but then the forecast called for rain before we left my house. What to do? Find a recipe for pralines and then attempt to make them in your own kitchen. Your bitter anger and resentment that you are not in Charleston at River Street Sweets will overheat the praline batter. You will be left with a wet bag of crap that smells like boiled dark brown sugar and broken dreams. You’ll still have a blast watching Reefer Madness with Greek subtitles while inhaling decadent homemade nachos.

4) Have a summer romance. Make out in a swimming pool. Get caught in the afternoon rain. Share a banana split. A real one, not a sex thing. This is the sex thing: Do what the kids call smooshing in the privacy of your own home or in a public restroom during the intermission of a play in the park. The kids are too young to call that “The George Michael.”

5) Realize vacation is a state of mind. If you are too lazy to shave your legs and stuff yourself into a swimsuit, tell people you have a moral objection to grooming because that’s what society wants you to do. You are not a kissing doll; you are a human woman. Then take to your patio in a pair of underwear that you think doubles as bathing suit bottoms. Go eat, drink (a cold Frozen Screwdriver with extra Peach Schnapps) and be hairy.

*A big thank you to whomever searched “lusty fat lady” and found my blog. Kisses to you.