Thoughts from The Road
Here are the five phrases we say most often while touring:
- Does anyone have tweezers?
- Kaytlin, move over, you're in my personal space.
- Whose charger is this? Can I use it?
- What’s the WiFi password?
- I used your toothbrush.
Try to guess who says which one most often!
Erin: Ughhh… So annoying. I changed my Gmail password on my computer and can’t seem to change it on my phone.
Abbi: [Without looking up and without hesitation] Settings, mail, accounts, Gmail, enter new password, save.
Carrie: [Without looking up] I concur. And I’m impressed you could do that from memory, Abbi.
Erin: Ummm… settings… uhhh…
[It’s not like Erin to be confused by this sort of thing so the three of us look up at her.]
Carrie: [Horrified] Jesus Christ! Your first step is to get an iPhone. What the fuck is that?
Abbi: [Disgusted] You don’t have an iPhone?
Erin: Shut up!
Kaytlin: [Confused] How can you live without an iPhone?
Erin: It works for me!
Carrie: Apparently not if you can't get your Gmail. Just pull your head out of your ass and get an iPhone already!
If you’ve ever wondered, “Where can I go to watch tourists in minivans attempt to turn right from the left lane of a major thoroughfare?” then, friend, do I have an answer for you. It’s a place where dreams and coats of many colors are made of. It’s a little place called Pigeon Forge.
“Really? They turn? Abruptly? Without warning? Across four lanes of traffic? To get to a go-kart track?” O friend. I’ve seen it more than once, in a little place called... (wait for it)... Pigeon Forge.
A Few Things To Do In Pigeon Forge, Tennessee:
- Enjoy Christmas, because IT IS CHRISTMAS ALL THE TIME IN PIGEON FORGE TENNESSEE.
- Stand next to the Dollywood sign and take a picture, if the $54 admission fee isn't in your tour budget.
- Jaywalk across 9 lanes of insane traffic to get to, say, a Baskin Robbins superstore. (This one's apparently popular with the locals.)
- Ride in the back of a monster truck. In a circle. Over a bump. The same bump, again and again. Even if you’re a child. A helmetless child.
- Celebrate disasters and gun violence. The Titanic is considered “Family Fun” in Pigeon Forge, at least according to the stage show they run at a model Titanic-shaped building with a genuine fake iceberg embedded in the side. Probably not the most sensitive thing in the world, but… no, actually, come to think of it, it's very insensitive. The same treatment goes for families who kept shooting at each other for generations: the Hattfield and McCoy Live Feuding Shotgun Dinner Theater is also a notable place to find some family fun on the Pigeon Vegas strip.
All snark aside, the people at Dollywood were extremely nice, and we regret we didn't have the time or funds to see the whole place. The rest of the town has been built up with plenty of eye-popping destination -- we have sore necks from all the double-takes -- and it's all thanks to one very special lady with big hair and a big heart. We blasted Dolly's music all the way up to the park gates, and, as a traveling band of female entertainers, we took comfort and pride in her lyrics and her accomplishments. She's one phenomenal lady, that Dolly Parton.
In short: best detour ever.
Knoxville, Tennessee! We battled the winding roads of the Blue Ridge Mountains to get to our second tour city, and boy was it worth the ride.
Our host, the inimitable Matt Ward, fed us delicious pasta with meat sauce and distracted us with his adorable baby as we piled out of the Corolla just an hour before show time. We arrived at the venue -- the gorgeous Preservation Pub -- with plenty of time to check out the roof deck before the show.
And that's when we saw it:
At that moment, we knew we were in for an amazing night.
The show opened with Matt Ward bringing the crowd together, then we each took the stage, getting lots of positive energy from the room. They sure do love the Pink Collar Comedy Tour in Knoxville. Applause breaks galore. We even got a standing ovation at the end of the night, along with the offer for three free draft beers apiece from the bar! (We each had, um, less than one.)
We then followed some local comics to an open mic comedy show at a gay bar in a strip mall. That last sentence is definitely the best and truest of all possible sentences, and it fills me with such fact-based glee that I will now type it over again: We then followed some local comics to an open mic comedy show at a gay bar in a strip mall.
Don't believe me?
This particular strip mall gay bar is called eXile [sic], and it's next to a nail salon and not too far from a Chick-Fil-A [sic]. In case you get confused, you can tell the gay bar from the Chick-Fil-A because the gay bar is open on Sundays. We had a fabulous time at the comedy show, met some fantastic local comedians, burlesque performers, and homosexuals, and got offered three free drinks apiece for being famous touring comedians from New York City! (We each had, um, less than one. Again. But that did bring our free drink offer total for the night to TWENTY-FOUR. Yowza. Instead of changing our name to the Black Out Collar Comedy Tour, we decided to restrain ourselves.)
At the end of the night, we left marveling at the wonders we had witnessed, particularly this strip mall gay bar thing that I can't remember if I've mentioned yet. eXile is a fine name for such an establishment, I suppose. But, just in case you want to open your own gay bar in a strip mall that looks exactly like the place I took driver's ed as a cranky teen in Plano, Texas, please allow the Pink Collar Comedy Tour to help brand this future venture.
Excellent Potential Names for a Gay Bar in a Strip Mall:
Panda Express (that one's for bears*)
SuperCuts?!? Bitch, Please!
and finally, Carrie's brilliant moniker:
You're welcome, strip mall gay bar entrepreneurs of the future. Don't even mention it.
*a bear is a kind of animal