So, you wanna MC a Drag Show?

Pre-show, pre-mascara

A photo posted by Kathryn Lynn Morgen (@kingkathryn) on

Twenty-four hours ago I was on my way to Mt. Vernon to host the 4th Annual SVC Rainbow Alliance Drag Show. Forty-eight hours ago I had just been offered and agreed to fill in as the MC for the aforementioned evening.

Last night was a transformational experience. I had no idea what I was walking into. I rehearsed a lip-sync performance (THANK YOU MELINDA) to Royals by Lorde four hours before the show and that gave me some sense that I was preparing. But, what I learned that there was nothing that I could have done to truly prepare for what was about to take place. I had to rely completely on self-trust, an overall faith in the way of the world, the beauty and charm of failure, presence of mind and spirit—and sex. 

First, let me say this, the show took place at a fucking concert hall. I mean, I had no idea the size of this fucking place when I said yes (not that I would have said differently, but I was not thinking I was walking onto a stage that could have hosted the Alvin Ailey dance company, I mean seriously LOOK AT IT. Definitely the largest stage I have ever set foot on that I can remember, and FAR SURPASSING the number of people I have ever performed for. The bottom center section alone seats AS MANY as the most people I've performed for.) And here I was, building this stage personality on the fucking fly.

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So. I'm backstage before the show doing the "Holy fucking shit" dance. And I go on to perform my song and HALLELUJAH! Tech problems.

Now, I guess I have to say that one of the things that I can really work is the awkward moments. I can be gracefully pathetic. I can manage to get people to laugh at me because of how much they DON'T want to be in my position, and thankfully, everyone already knew that I'd been asked to step in at the last minute.

The first 15 minutes I was onstage I would say were... well.... I'm pretty sure I stunned everyone out of remembering where they were, why they were there, and what the hell was going on.

My song wouldn't play so I didn't have to perform which I am so thankful for since I rehearsed in a 40-seat blackbox theater, but at the same time that was my introduction to the whole bit, so, that's how I kicked everything off.

Awkward, nervous, hey what the fuck, okay, haha, fuck it, okay, work it.

The first five minutes of talking to the crowd I was mysteriously stuck with a southern accent that I couldn't shake that I confessed to the audience was not my real voice which they thought was funny so that was good. 

The first drag show category was Casual/Club Wear and I had no fucking idea how to deal with the fact that I was hosting a pageant, until later when I got a little coaching and had a little whiskey.

The main fact is: I had no time to be afraid. I had absolutely no time to stop and recognize that I had no fucking clue how to handle this situation, which I didn't, I just had to fucking do it. And so... I did.

The real breakthrough came when I confessed to the audience that I am a master at accidentally making passes at people, at which point I flipped that whole thing around and started INTENTIONALLY making passes at people. Embracing sexual innuendo, and assuming this personality which (has been with me for as long as I can remember but I've never had a reason to really fully embody until now) was pretty awkward, kind of stupid, somewhat toasted, quite flirtatious, and unashamed and completely her-my-self.

I was thankful for those who gracefully and respectfully gave me feedback to start engaging with the audience and making the most of it (Chris! Anji!) and really unimpressed with the people (who you find in every performance space) who wanted to step up and take control of the situation and had no business doing so, but I will say that I am grateful for them too—because they flipped my fire switch right on and and ultimately, they were an important catalyst for me to step it up... even though their approach was really rude and uninformed.

The greatest gift from the evening is probably that I don't feel afraid of anything. I mean, this was the craziest fucking thing I've ever experienced. I have been through some weird shit but this was certifiably insane. It was like jumping into a blackhole.

I know there is so much more to it, there was so much more going on besides my crazy fucking experience, but it was like tunnel vision. It was like a vortex. I can barely reconcile and process what happened. I haven't even told you about the gorgeous fucking queens who killed it. I mean, KILLED IT. It was so fucking glorious.

It started off turbulent because I was intrinsically wrapped up in this clusterfuck that was the first act and obviously had no fucking idea what to do, but our relationships became warmer once I started taking charge a little more. I hope to visit a few of them at their show in Bellingham now that I'll be spending more time there, and some of them are planning to come to QPOW! Weekend in August.

Anyway. So, that's the story for those who wanted to hear it. There's more, there's details, there's the fact that I asked EVERYONE about their astrological sign. There's the fact that if there were haters I don't know who they are and I am thankful for that—my own inner-critic can fill in the blanks—there's the fact that I learned how to throw shade, and I made the unofficial theme of the evening "Unapologetic" after one of the queens performed, and the fact that I talked about discovering my sexuality by humping things.

So.

All in all, it was basically a dream come true.

Will post photos when they arrive.

xo LKL

Some of My Stuff

Witchy Stuff.

Theatre Stuff.  All the theatre stuff. Well, most of it. I mean, a lot of it.

Technological Stuff. I mean, really what im trying to say here is I like circuit boards and I grew up on the Internet and I am teaching myself Video Projection Mapping OR ELSE.

Delicious Stuff.  Coffee, chocolate, etc.

Sparkly Stuff. 

Lisa Frank. 

Space Stuff. 

Furry Stuff. 

Oceanic Stuff. 

Stormy Stuff.

Surreal Stuff.

Quantum Mechanical Stuff. 

Dance stuff, especially with drums. 

Theatre & Life (2)

Who am I?

There's this sensation I am familiar with that reminds me of in mostly sci-fi movies when beams of light shoot out of people, and their bodies are horizontal and usually levitating and their chests rise upward while the rest of their bodies arc away from the peak of their sternum the way magnets of the same pole repel each other.

This is the sensation intrinsically linked to my emotions surging—so intensely that my physical body wants to become the hose that channels the water that is on too high.

I spent most of my day (some days ago when I started this post) revisiting my teenage-to-young-adult psyche (age 16 to 23) thanks to the wonders of the modern world—my livejournal account is still active, no I will not share the link with you. I couldn't understand why I wanted to dive so deeply into nostalgia, especially THAT PARTICULAR nostalgia until... 

Gratitude.

So much has evolved and transformed and I am so grateful down to the tips of my little toes. For movement. For progress. For nestling into a rhythm of life that serves me, that holds me, that nurtures me, that is elastic and abundant and rich with love.

I spent most of my childhood and adolescence feeling angry, confused, and trapped by my consciousness and emotional intensity.

Not surprisingly, the times when my writing was the most grounded and present (as opposed to frenetically present) were during times of theatre rehearsals and performances. In fact, the livejournal was begun at a time when I was reentering the world of theatre in High School, and rediscovering why I loved it so much even though I didn't really know that at the time.

I have been on this "Nostalgia" train for the past couple of days. Revisiting, rediscovering, remembering—wondering in a way what life would be like if I had chosen a different way to get through some of the darkest parts of my life so far. 

Usually I would say this isn't such a great thing to do because I can lose myself in the what-ifs but this has been different. A return to self... sort of. A reinvigoration. The build up to Mercury Retrograde, no doubt, when all of these verbs that are prefixed with "re-" arise.

I am surging with emotion and overwhelm and tasks and wanting, and wouldn't it be cool to have a fairy godmother appear and organize everything into a data set of neatly outlined categories and action items. I'm not asking for everything to be magically done for me, just (haha, JUST) the data processing, the information architecture, so that I can steel myself with a comprehensive awareness of all the areas in my life that I want to clean up. Ironically, information architecture and data visualization are things I LOVE to do. So that'll tell you something, probably.

Finances. Material objects cluttering my existence, padding my consciousness from fear of lightness, boundlessness. My home. My work, in it's many forms. My time... using it to empower my self, my mind, my body, my soul.

Where am I going?

I started writing a piece without even thinking called My Stuff, distilling my existence into the things I love and gravitate the strongest toward. The things that excite a sparkling response in my being—the draft vanished through a series of technological malfunctions (I bet a writer before computers never had a draft spontaneously vanish from existence through some portal right in front of their eyes, note to self, remember this next time you start drafting something on a technological device) and so, being encouraged by Michael to "do it! rewrite it! do your work!" I rewrote it and now it is sitting safely in my drafts because I don't like it anymore, it lost something of it's oompfh because I had to THINK about it, and now I will have to overcome some insecurities in order to publish it.

But Anyway. The point being that theatre is probably the largest or widest or most expanded outlet in my life for processing and creating, but this poem, undoubtedly inspired through Felicia Day's You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) (a great book, almost too great, startlingly great and close to home, thank you Woodzick for lending it to me) was a way to channel all of these "re-" verbs that are coming up into something that I could see and sort of touch in a non-physical way. Something to grasp as I move forward in creating the life I want. Through theatre, yes, but also in ways that I don't understand. In ways that will undoubtedly show themselves to me by way of My Stuff.

An incongruous but ultimately relevant excerpt from You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

An incongruous but ultimately relevant excerpt from You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

Our lives, and specifically our childhoods, have so many buried treasures. Clues and keys to our dreams. I have been uncovering a lot of these lately and it is overwhelming to say the least. I feel like I am at a banquet of all my favorite foods and there is enough for everyone and there are a number of non-weird as well as questionable-weird recipes along with stories about all of these foods and I want to invite all my favorite people and share these stories, but at the moment I am full. Full of clutter. And perhaps it is the middle of the night so most people are sleeping and not prepared for a story-time banquet despite what fun it might be to spontaneously arrive in their pjs.

How am I going to get there?

A quick google search reveals these three questions (the ones that have been italicized as sort of headings in this post) are widely used in many facets of self-development, guidance, life-path, creative stuff. I came to them by way of one Mr. Andrew Grenier, whom I admire with all my heart, through a theatre workshop where I work.

This morning I had a devastating blow when I awoke to the realization that it was 10:00 and I was already late to arrive to his last workshop of the season and he was locked out of the building and I had royally, in my book, fucked. up. Thankfully my boss was there, bringing her daughter to the workshop, so it wasn't like he was completely stranded in the water, but my self-respect plummeted. Not to mention we collectively decided to cancel since there were only two attendees.

This was a program I had created, I had birthed, It gave me solace knowing that it existed because I believed in it, I believed that it was really fucking important to have these workshops and that it was equally important that Andy be the one to lead them. And yet, here we were. The life-force of this thing that I created had been neglected. I felt like I had neglected the teens and Andy and how fucking valuable the program was to myself, too. I still feel that way. (What is it, "Be the person who you needed when you were younger" ? Oofph.)

Andy talks a lot about agreements. Being in agreement and being out of agreement. This morning I was sorely out of agreement, and it forced me to take a look at why, because here was one way I REALLY DID NOT WANT TO BE out of agreement. I had not done anything exactly WRONG to be out of agreement, but the agreements that I had made were not the kind of agreements that I could uphold. Too many irons in the fire. Shit like that. A particular kind of failure of self and those you love and respect.

I think these are the turning points in life. These are the dark gems. The chances, and opportunities to recalibrate, to pivot our perspectives, and adjust our approaches. Granted, ideally, they can happen maybe in a more minor-adjustments-along-the-way sort of fashion, but generally we are all fucking human and cannot escape the ones that hit hard, I get it. But at least we can learn from them.