“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: May 2015

May 31, 2015


human agingAges 0-11: The world is such an interesting and constantly surprising place!
Ages 11-13: The world is changing all the time and I’m not sure I like it.
Ages 13-17: The world is a HORRIBLE place totally because of grown-ups who never listen to me which is why I won’t talk to them.
Ages 17-21: I am secretly SO HOT.
Ages 21-29: I can be anything I want if I just work hard and where are we going tonight?
Ages 30-35: I am a total failure and I always will be which is why no one will ever love me and can you blame them?
Ages 35-40: Okay, I can work with this, it’s not what I had in mind but it’s sort of better!
Ages 40-45: I still totally look like I’m 29.
Ages 45-50: Holding steady.
Ages 50-60: Am I over? Is feeling like this the definition of being an adult?
Ages 60-65: If I die now no one will say I died young but they’ll still say it was too soon.
Ages 65-70: I am almost old. Almost.
Ages 70-80: Why do all of these young people all look the same? Why can’t they wear name tags? What was I saying?
Ages 80-90: I know something you don’t know. Hee hee hee. And no, I don’t have Alzheimer’s, I just don’t remember you.
Ages 90-100: I’ll stand up soon. Or not.
Ages 100-???: I’m not talking to you unless you bring a camera crew, and a cake.

May 30, 2015

Those Duggars

duggarsMichelle and Jim Bob Duggar are giving an exclusive interview to Fox News, to discuss their recent troubles. In advance of this broadcast, here are some ways in which the Duggars could express their true and profound regret for all they’ve done:

1. They could form a loving family prayer circle around child-molesting son Josh, and kick him to death.

2. The Duggar ladies could all pull their hair back into ponytails for a full week, like wicked city gals, as a show of humility.

3. The Duggar men could abstain from wearing JC Penney crewneck sweaters for 24 hours, just to see if they can.

4. The entire family could embark on a scavenger hunt, attempting to find exotic items such as Jews, homosexuals and racial minorities. The family members would be required to take selfies and then rush back home, titillated and relieved.

5. Instead of home schooling the next generation of Duggars, the family could send the kids to public schools, but wearing earplugs and sleep masks.

6. The Duggars could apologize for preaching hatred against GLBTQ people, and then admit that they’re not sure what “GLBTQ” spells, or how to pronounce it.

7. The Duggars could sell two of their children, to give them a chance at a normal life.

8. The Duggars have always been fierce and vicious opponents of abortion; they could allow a photo of the family to be used as the pro-choice movement’s most powerful argument.

May 29, 2015

Authentic, True and Real

111628705_barbie-in-a-mermaid-tale-ken-merliah-hadley-dolls-ebayI’ve noticed that sometimes, when people wail over stereotypes and a lack of authenticity, they’re really harboring secret fantasy versions of themselves. For example:

An authentic gay male character would be: sensitive but not effeminate, handsome but not full of himself, underrated by everyone around him, including his friends and family, yearning for something more than a superficial Grindr-like connection.

An authentic heterosexual female character would be: funny and charismatic, beautiful in an offbeat way, smart yet self-deprecating, fiercely intelligent and a devoted friend.

An authentic heterosexual male character would be: brash but secretly romantic, really smart and really funny, a goofball yet secretly brave and true.

An authentic lesbian character would be: neither butch nor femme yet with elements of both, smart in a way that sneaks up on people, creative and loving and independant, great with animals but not because she’s a lesbian.

An authentic transgender character would be any of the above, with the addition of not being surrounded by ignorant cisgender people asking the transgender person way too many, far too personal questions.

May 28, 2015

Dear Future Husband

Here’s Meghan Trainor’s latest. She’s a wonderful singer-songwriter and, much like Taylor Swift, her work has a Brill Building feel, like the songs of Ellie “Leader of the Pack” Greenwich, Carole King and the Ronettes.

May 24, 2015

Todrick Hall

Todrick Hall was an American Idol finalist who’s gone on to a hugely successful Youtube career, where his videos are viewed by millions. Many of the videos involve wild new versions of Disney classics and numbers from movie musicals like Dreamgirls or Chicago. He’s going to have his own MTV series later this summer. His stuff is wonderfully over the top and takes full and rowdy advantage of every possible stereotype. At a moment when so much of gay culture has grown timid, somber and obsessed with political correctness, it’s gratifying to find someone so fearless. Todrick Hall is a next step, combining elements of Glee, Almodovar, Beach Blanket Babylon, RuPaul’s Drag Race, Forbidden Broadway and God knows what else. Here’s his take on Beauty and the Beast:

May 23, 2015

It’s About Time

Ted_Cruz_14Texas senator and Tea Party favorite Ted Cruz has said that “The Democratic Party has become radical and extreme” in its “devotion to mandatory gay marriage.” I applaud the Democrats and I’d like to propose some suggestions for implementing nationwide forced gay marriage:

– Make every citizen turn to the nearest same-sex person and ask, “Will you marry me? It’s the law.”

– When heterosexuals attempt to get married, make the groom marry his Best Man, and the bride marry either her Maid of Honor or her mom. Everyone will have to comply, if they want cake.

– Require all wedding cakes to have little plastic same-sex couples on top. The little plastic couples don’t have to be looking at each other.

– Federal agents should force Ted Cruz, at gunpoint, to marry Mike Huckabee. Which they secretly yearn to do anyway.

– Heterosexual couples should be required to live hidden, fearful lives, and be shamed by their families and clergy. There may be a historical model for this.

– On our nation’s highways, only same-sex couples should be allowed to use the HOV lane.

– If anyone wishes to escape mandatory gay marriage, they may seek asylum inside Ted Cruz’s jowls. There’s plenty of room.

May 21, 2015

On The Street

New York City celebrates the Fleet Week.It’s Fleet Week in New York, and I’ve noticed that anyone wearing a sailor suit, the kind with the wide collar and the bellbottoms, looks like they’re in a musical.

I saw An American in Paris last night, which was terrific, and all of the dancers are in such amazing shape that even their bulky hidden mic packs can’t make them look fat.

Whenever I hear tourists speaking another language, I immediately re-evaluate their outfits. Especially if they’re speaking French or Italian – I expect more.

When children get all dressed up, they look frumpy.

My new favorite phrase, from a fashion blog, involves a man wearing “a statement blazer.”

On the home shopping channels, when the hosts are hawking, say, a poylester cardigan, they’ll say things like, “This is perfect for just running around town, or brunch at the country club.”

In Times Square I saw a man wearing a bright red velvet graduation gown and a mortar board, posing for a photo with his arms around two women. I couldn’t tell if he’d just graduated from a somewhat flamboyant school, or if there’s a superhero I’ve never heard of who dresses that way. What’s his super power – the ability to snare an entry level job and start paying off his student loans?

May 19, 2015

Libby Gelman-Waxner: Mad Me

locandina-mad-max-fury-roadMost of the mainstream critics have gone wild for Mad Max: Fury Road, maybe because it’s all about savage dystopian warriors driving really fast and blowing each other up, which is pretty much the opposite of being a nice pudgy film critic with a burrito in his messenger bag. Maybe all you really need to know are some of the characters’ names, which include Imperator Furiosa, Rictus Erectus, Cheedo the Fragile, Corpus Colossus and my favorite of all time, Zoe Kravitz as Toast the Knowing.


Tom Hardy plays Max Rocatansky, who’s an outlaw with a code of honor, and Charlize Theron’s a one-armed babe with a buzz cut, driving her enormous and complicated vehicle off-road in search of something called The Green Place, which sounds like a new McDonald’s Healthy Eating campaign.

For me, the best thing about the movie is watching cars which never get stuck in traffic on the L.I.E. to Amagansett; Mad Max is about what would happen if everyone on the Jersey Turnpike had a flamethrower in their back seat and a malformed dwarf in their glove compartment. The stunts are amazing, and Charlize is a great Sigourney Weaver-in-Alien style action-chick, but about midway through something very strange happens: the story stops completely so we can watch a batch of supermodels wearing gauzy beach cover-ups hose each other down. It’s like something out of Zoolander and for a second I wondered if the movie had been hacked, by extremely horny and undernourished teenage boys and their Dads.


The movie tries to get feminist, when Charlize runs into a gaggle of silver-haired, leathery-tanned women called the Vuvalini; they’re like a Santa Fe womyn’s commune dressed by Georgia O’Keefe. But the supermodels stick around and despite all of the fierce battles, they never seem to get dirty, and I assumed that eventually one of them would either marry Donald Trump or sign a deal with L’Oreal. Also, once Charlize and her pals drive way out into the desert, they realize that they have to drive all the way back, so maybe the movie should be called “Mad Max: I Forgot My House Keys.”


Still, it’s always fun to watch souped-up, porcupine-like SUVs smashing into each other, and to witness a future where the most precious commodities are gasoline and severe black eye shadow. Maybe in the next Mad Max movie, the Vuvalini should have a sing-off against the cast of Pitch Perfect, if you ask me.

May 18, 2015

Love Is In The Air

bolo-de-casamento-luxo-02Yesterday’s NY Times included profiles of three intriguing gay couples. There were two guys who’d been trying to get legally married since the late 1960s, and through a certain amount of legal subterfuge, they kind of managed it, and they’re still together. The second couple, also male, tried to found a rural utopian community involving farming and weaving, except almost no one wanted to join up. They’re no longer together, but they’ve chosen to live as co-hermits on their isolated property. The third pairing was lesbian, and both woman are professional basketball players. Their relationship is passionate and volatile, and the police were summoned to their home on a domestic disturbance complaint a week before the wedding. The 6’4″ woman insists that she’s not gay, and that the only woman she’s attracted to is her 6’8″ partner. I’m rooting for them, to at least make it through the honeymoon.

As for heterosexual romance, I’m fascinated by the young Latvian woman who’s currently in jail, accused of murdering her much-older American fiancee by tampering with his kayak (they’d paddled out into chilly waters, and only she had a life vest.) The young lady was the recipient of the guy’s life insurance money and in the days following his death, she posted a video of herself doing cartwheels and she lustily sang “Hotel California” at a karaoke bar. We each grieve in our own unique way.

I wish the Times would introduce a new section to the wedding announcements, called either Domestic Disturbances or Engaged to be Murdered.


May 13, 2015

More Amy Schumer

I keep posting these because I love Amy Schumer and because it’s exciting to watch such a terrific and original performer hitting her stride. There was a sketch on her show the other night involving an inspired parody of 12 Angry Men in which 12 guys locked a in a jury room debated whether Amy Schumer was hot enough to be on basic cable.The sketch was great but it only had one problem: Amy herself was barely in it. She’s got a movie coming out this summer, called Trainwreck, and I can’t wait.

May 12, 2015

For My Art

chrisburdenThe conceptual artist Chris Burden has just died at 69, an impressive age given that his artworks included the following: having an associate shoot him in the arm from 15 feet away with a .22 rifle; being crucified, with real nails, to a Volkswagen Beetle; attaching live electrical wires to his chest; crawling, nearly naked, through a field of broken glass; and in my favorite piece, entitled “Kunst Kick”, he was kicked down a flight of stairs at the Basel Art Fair.

Mr. Burden was a fascinating person, and he’s inspired me to plan my own conceptual works, which will include:

1. Reading Chris Burden’s obituary and wondering what sort of health insurance he carried.
2. Using a boxcutter to open a Fedex package.
3. Standing on the second-to-highest step of a small step-ladder to change a lightbulb in a ceiling fixture.
4. Insisting that a paper cut can be a life-threatening injury, because IT’S HAPPENED, WHY DON’T YOU GOOGLE IT, SMARTASS.
5. Walking barefoot ANYWHERE.
6. Wondering if I should wash my hands after opening that Fedex package, in case whoever sent me the package hadn’t washed theirs.
7. Using the bathroom at the gym.


May 7, 2015

Case Closed!

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 15.05.29Sylvia Driskell, 66, of Omaha, Nebraska has filed a lawsuit, handwritten on lined notebook paper, against all homosexuals, on behalf of God, demanding that the court determine if being gay is a sin.To help the Judge in this case, I’d like to provide a working definition of the word “sin”:

1. Does the activity feel really good, when practiced correctly?
2. Do millions of people enjoy the activity?
3. Does the activity upset Sylvia Driskell?
4. Does the activity, for some adherents, involve saying things like, “Sylvia, Sylvia, Sylvia. What is your problem, ladybug?”
5. Does the activity involve, for the devout, lip-synching to the entire score of Cabaret, both the Broadway and movie versions, as a child?
6. Does being truly committed to the sin of homosexuality demand lip-synching to Cabaret as an adult, and adding choreography and greater emotional depth to “Maybe This Time”?
7. When a truly impressive gay sinner is told that his sin will send him to hell, does he reply, “Off season?”
8. Will certain sinners, on occasion, dress as Sylvia Driskell, fan themselves and declare, “My nephew Preston is not a homosexual! He only created a one-man version of Cabaret as a homework assignment from Oral Roberts University!”
9. If a person practices the sin of homosexuality on a daily basis, will he or she ultimately win a set of guest towels?
10. Is the sin of homosexuality designed, according to Sylvia Driskell, “Just to get my goat, and my dander up”?
11. Does the sin make Sylvia Driskell so irate that one time she went to church without her teeth?