“Gleefully wacky and irreverent.”

–The New York Times

“Line by line, Mr. Rudnick may be the funniest writer for the stage in the United States today.”

–The New York Times

“Deeply funny musings and adventures elevate Paul Rudnick to the highest level of American comedy writing.”

–Steve Martin

“One of the funniest quip-meisters on the planet.”

–The New York Times

“Paul Rudnick is a champion of truth (and love and great wicked humor) whom we ignore at our peril.”

–David Sedaris

“Quips fall with the regularity of the autumn leaves.”

–Associated Press

Month: April 2015

April 28, 2015

More Moments of Gay Zen

2357430-420While I was watching the Bruce Jenner interview, which I thought was terrific, I did wonder, “Why isn’t there more emphasis on Bruce’s role in the Village People movie Can’t Stop The Music?”

While channel surfing, I passed a Home Shopping program selling Dell Computers. For a second I thought the description read Doll Computers, and I immediately began picturing tiny little laptops and iPads that dolls could use.

While browsing through the 50% Off All Easter Goods sale rack at Kmart, I tried to figure out why the gift baskets shaped like the head of Yoda had outsold the gift baskets shaped like the head of Hello Kitty. I also tried to think of a friend who might enjoy receiving one of these gift baskets. I also questioned the concept of using a decapitated head as a gift basket.

After visiting a menswear website, I emailed a friend that these are the three most beautiful words in the English language: “Sporty Spring basics.”

Orphan Black satisfies the two basic demands of a certain gay male audience: a bravura central performance by a superb actress and frequent male nudity.


April 23, 2015

Shall We Dance

Lincoln Center is presenting a wonderful new production of The King and I. I hadn’t seen the movie, or any productions of the show, in quite a while, and I’d wondered if the proceedings might seem sentimental or politically hopeless – if you’ve never seen it, The King and I concerns Anna Leonowens, an Englishwoman brought to Siam in 1861 to tutor the King’s many wives and children. The show is staggeringly good, and far more serious, witty and smart than I’d remembered. It manages to cover slavery, the introduction of Western habits into an Eastern culture, and some very potent sexual politics, all set to a sumptuous Rodgers and Hammerstein score, which makes an awful lot of more recent music seem puny. Here’s a clip from the movie, starring Deborah Kerr and Yul Brynner. This number arrives towards the end of the show, after scenes of suspense and harsh disagreement, so the song’s romance becomes even sexier and more powerful.

April 21, 2015

The Gay Thing

Gay-MarriageIt’s always entertaining and occasionally heartbreaking to watch politicians wrestle with sculpting their policy statements regarding gay people. Most Democratic politicians, including President Obama, have “evolved” towards support for gay civil rights. The many Republicans seeking a Presidential nomination are more perplexed; they need to satisfy the right-wing religious nutjobs but also the vast majority of younger Republicans who support stuff like gay marriage. Many of these candidates have been asked if they’d attend a gay wedding; Scott Walker admitted to attending the reception for a gay couple, but not the wedding, while the ever-hateful Rick Santorum wouldn’t get within miles of such a satanic ritual. Marco Rubio has decided that being gay isn’t a choice, but that marriage must still exist only between a man and a woman. Because these squirmings have become so incoherent, I’d like to help out, with a few more possible responses:

“I would attend a gay wedding, but I wouldn’t pay more than $25 for a gift.”

“I have gay friends, but I pity them.”

“My cousin is gay, and we invite her for brunch, but not dinner. I believe that dinner is only for a man and a woman.”

“I’m fine with gay people legalizing their relationships, as long as it’s not called marriage. I’d prefer to call it Subhuman Coupling or Non-Dairy Marriage Substitute.”

“I would serve as an usher at a gay wedding, but I’d wear sweats, to show that it wasn’t a real wedding.”

“I believe, and I have always believed, that the states should regulate my son’s choice of sleazy boyfriends who claim they’re attending online business school.”

“I would be willing to sit beside a gay person on a plane, if I received a substantial rebate.”

“I’ve known many fine, upstanding gay Americans, and I’ve had satisfying gay sex with them, but I don’t want them filling the Oval Office with fussy knicknacks and framed black-and-white photographs of well-muscled male torsos, so I’d only let them rethink the powder rooms near the Rose Garden.”

April 20, 2015

Further Proof of Climate Change

climate-changeWhen I left my apartment this morning to go to the gym, it was raining. So I didn’t go.

In a brief video clip from an outdoor rally, Marco Rubio’s hair appeared to move.

All of the children who spent the long winter cooped up inside, shrieking, can now enjoy the city’s many playgrounds. And then they can come home and shriek about how much fun they had.

Due to the slightest hints of Spring, various young women are now wearing mini-skirts, platform sandals, tank tops and little shrunken cardigans. And when it rains they’re attempting to cover themselves with microscopic $4.99 folding umbrellas.

Could the drought in California be the result of too many residents watering down their screenplays to please a mass audience?

April 14, 2015

Election Anxiety

inform-your-vote-with-these-6-presidential-campaign-apps-faa5ef2099As any presidential race ramps up, I become consumed with fear, whenever the media focuses on some nightmarish new candidate. I become convinced that these repulsive blowhards have a real shot, even if they almost always implode within a few weeks. Remember the wild speculation over, say, Rick Santorum or Rick Perry or another run by Sarah Palin? So many pundits are willing to write Cassandra-like op-ed pieces, on why Chris Christie or Ben Carson or Bobby Jindal will be our next President.

Here are some tips for avoiding the sort of jitters which can destroy so many innocent brain cells:

– Don’t read lengthy think pieces about any candidate, including the people you support. These pieces will rarely contain any new information.

– Never trust the wild-eyed opinion of any lower-level campaign official wearing red, white and blue clothing and holding a sign reading So-and-So 2016.

– Only skim the first paragraph of any candidate’s announcement that he or she is running for office.The rest will be blather. You can also ignore all campaign videos, unless you’re really interested in watching cross-sections of people getting misty-eyed about the American Dream and A Better Tommorrow.

– Ignore creepy old guys like Dick Cheney, who’ll say anything to get back on camera.

– Wait for the debates, which are less easily controlled by the candidates and their teams.

– Ignore polling, because the numbers will only give you either a stomachache or false optimism, and everything will change within 24 hours.

– Try to avoid hysterical people, who will insist that if so-and-so wins, they’re moving to Canada.

April 12, 2015

Merry Mariah

mariah-carey-christmas-3Mariah Carey recently announced a deal to create and star in a new Christmas-themed movie. She wasn’t specific about the character she’d be playing or the plot, but her rep promised, “It will be everything you hope a Christmas movie with Mariah Carey would be.” I’ve been praying this day would come, because here are the Mariah Christmas movies of my dreams:

On the day Christ is born, Mariah miraculously appears at the manger. The Three Wise Men are especially thrilled, turning to each other and squealing, “It’s Mariah Carey! Now I’m excited!” Mariah will tell Mary, while trying not to sound superior, “I have twins.”

A small child is abandoned by his cruel, drug-addicted Mom on Christmas Eve in the projects. In a vision, Mariah appears to the child and confides that she’s making a Christmas movie. The child dies of the freezing cold and starvation, but he feels so special.

Santa has grown weary of his yearly journey. Mariah plays a beautiful, curvaceous young elf, who tells Santa, “This year, just give everyone my new holiday album, where I sing O Holy Night while taking a bubble bath!” Santa’s spirit is restored, as his sleigh is pulled by all of Mariah’s assistants.

Mariah plays a lovely young schoolteacher, who stages a pageant uniting Christian, Jewish and Muslim children.The school board tries to fire Mariah for her compassion and her habit of conducting rehearsals in lingerie, but her students refuse to perform without her. As Davey, the little Jewish boy says, “Who else can we get on such short notice?”

In a reworking of A Christmas Carol, Mariah plays a beautiful young angel who appears to the morose, jealous Jennifer Lopez. Mariah shows Jennifer the true meaning of Christmas, and helps her to get a job as a mall Santa.

April 9, 2015

Mary Cleere Haran

Mary Cleere was a wonderful singer and a superb student of the American songbook. I knew her just a bit, and it was always a treat to run into her on a Village streetcorner – she had an innate, good-humored glamour. She died far too young at age 58, following a bicycle accident in 2011.

April 7, 2015

Helping Hillary

I adore Hillary Clinton just the way she is, and it must be nightmarish for any female politician to have to constantly deal with comments and advice on their appearance and likeability. But I’ll do anything to help Hillary get elected, so here are some options, to appease the haters:

Pigtails. Maybe with hidden wires, so they can curve upwards for a Pippi Longstocking insouciance.

Big pink bows, everywhere. Before Hillary makes any appearance, her stylist should command, “Think poodle!”


Bright red lipstick, applied in a permanent, welcoming grin, like the Joker.


Gingham aprons, worn over every outfit, accesorized with a mixing bowl and a spatula.


For the debates: a floral print onesie.


To confuse the pro-lifers: Instead of a briefcase, Hillary should always carry an adorable, lifesize baby doll, maybe in a Snugli.


To confuse the NRA stalwarts: a holster, with two polka-dot pistols, which Hillary can fire into the air, rootin’-tootin’ style, to underline a point.


April 6, 2015

All Apologies

500x_apology_mouseWhen a celebrity or a politician says, or tweets:

“I was quoted out of context”, they mean: I was quoted accurately, and the revelation of my true hatefulness angered people, but I want everyone to still love me and buy whatever product, TV show or album I’m hawking.

“I never meant any disrespect to anyone”: My gay manager told me that I can’t alienate any potential fanbase.

“I was just saying what I believe, and I hope that others who believe differently will respect my beliefs”: God loves me and hates you.

“I am sincerely sorry for offending anyone”: I am sincerely sorry that I got caught saying something so stupid, even though I meant every word.

“I believe in the true American ideals of compassion, understanding and love for all of my fellow human beings”: Wait, tell me again why belonging to the Klan is a bad thing?

“Everyone who knows me will tell you that I am a fundamentally kind and openhearted person”: And by everyone who knows me, I mean the lawyer who actually wrote this apology.

April 3, 2015

Fifty Shades of Peeps

Because it’s that time of year, let’s start with images of some of the world’s largest chocolate bunnies. This first photo is a bit creepy, because the little boy is obviously grieving:huge-chocolate-easter-bunny-by-johnkoetsier


A more approachable Jeff Koons sculpture:


The bunny as sphinx. Its secret? It’s just eaten one of the employees.


Let’s move on to the glorious pastel world of Peeps:

Can you spot Justice Scalia?


This final image actually sickens me, because, given my sweet tooth, it’s pretty much a self-portrait: