A Message from the Editor
and welcome to Issue 69 of Naked Sunfish!! This is our unofficial
“Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll” issue! So please,
if you are in any way offended by a blunt, honest portrayal (albeit
mostly humorous) of any or all of these subjects I highly (pun
intended) advise you NOT TO READ ISSUE 69!! That’s what
I do with Fox (So Called) News! I am so offended that I DO NOT
GO THERE! You’ve been duly warned.
Now to our regular readers – enjoy Issue 69!!!
It was late
Friday afternoon … probably after 4 p.m. It was winter break,
so students had gone home and the campus was delightfully dead.
A couple other staff members were working the circulation desk,
while I sat readied at my desk to make some sort of authoritative
supervisory decision if one came up. I was confident that none would.
It was, after all, the holiday season and people had better things
to do than spend a good chunk of their time doing research in a
Except for me. I was doing some heavy research by reading the satirically
funny, faux newspaper called The Onion. This is how I spent many
a final Friday hour at the place I spent nearly 31 years working
… and doing research of course. I still love The Onion’s
farcical news stories. I always made a point of reading Dan Savage’s
advice column “Savage Love” as well. Mr. Savage is an
author, columnist and gay political activist. I’ve always
enjoyed his “no holds barred” frankness when giving
relationship and sex advice. He is also well known for his conflicts
with social conservatives and the adaption of the term “Santorum”
for … well … you look it up. Suffice it to say I agree
that Rick Santorum deserves the label.
I’ve got my own dirt to share.
So I’m sitting in the back of the department, all by myself,
in the quiet, reading “Savage Love”. A man had written
in and asked Dan about clitorises. Apparently the guy’s girlfriend
had a particularly large one and he wondered if this was normal.
Mr. Savage sensed the writer’s veiled homophobia, as I did.
It was obvious the writer was uncomfortable with something that
may resemble a tiny penis. (Perhaps he had one himself.) But in
a professional move, because of his sexual orientation and ignorance
of female genitalia, Savage referred the question to a gynecologist
… a lesbian gynecologist in fact.
Her response was very positive … very professional …
stating emphatically that vaginas are all similar, as are clitorises,
yet can be very different at the same time … just like penises.
The good doctor reassured the writer that despite the bigger size,
his girlfriend’s clitoris was normal and healthy. He should
accept it and love her for being exactly the way she was …
appreciate her uniqueness.
Then … to be even more convincing I suppose … the gynecologist
wrote that many, many men love big clitorises! She went
on to add that some men actually celebrate large clitorises!
And to prove her point she provided a link to a website where men
could participate in the celebratory process!
Friday. Work. No one around. Nothing happening.
To click or
not to click. THAT was the question.
I pondered my dilemma.
“The woman is a DOCTOR!” I thought to myself. “A
PROFESSIONAL!” “She is recommending a site that CELEBRATES
I sat nonplussed for what seemed a long while.
Then … I moved my mouse and … clicked.
my monitor screen was filled with the image of a gargantuan vagina!
It was as if gazing upon a fleshy Grand Canyon. The image …
with its voluminous vulva … was at once a vast Labia landscape
both Majora and Minora! And there … just before the North
Rim of this amazing womanhood in widescreen … was what appeared
as if a firm, fleshy, grandiose Leaning Tower of Clitoris!
Besides being in shock at what had just transpired, I experienced
a myriad of emotions. First, I felt as if I were a newborn …
a baby born with the sensibilities of a 55-year-old man. And I was
looking back from whence I came. I glanced down to see if there
was an umbilical cord.
Immediately following this “2nd birth” thought came
this one: I was a gynecologist examining my patient using the Hubble
THAT’S how gigantic this vagina appeared to be!
I sat there silently dumbfounded … in awe and more than a
Then I heard, “Hey Rick! How … uh … uh …oh
I whipped my head around to see who it might be.
It was not my immediate supervisor.
It was not the head of the department.
It was one very huge mukkity muck! Le grand fromage! A very, very
BIG CHEESE! One stratospheric authority figure!
I began speaking in tongues.
“FA! FA! BWAH BA BAAAAA!”
My face was as bright red as a … as a … as a ROOSTER’S
Finally it occurred to me to get the giant vagina off my computer
With trembling hand I clicked the screen blank.
I inhaled deeply and acted like nothing had happened. And he did
as well. Fortunately, we were both on friendly terms. And one of
the great things about libraries is that censorship is vehemently
opposed. Librarians are very much true libertarians.
The two of us have never spoken of this late Friday during the holiday
break occurrence. Nor will we ever.
And when I am confused as whether to click or not click …
I wait until I am safely at home.
by Dennis Toth
You must occupy
Non Fiction Theater of the Truly Mundane
by Rick Brown
The outside lobby of an indoor theater. People are filing out
of the theater from doors both stage right and left. The crowd
is probably 90% women. Above each door is a modest marquee reading:
2 p.m. & 8 p.m.
and his wife Yvonne are standing center stage obviously discussing
the afternoon’s performance.
Rick (pointing to small group of women stage left) – Hey!
Isn’t that Iris over there?
Yvonne – Yeah, I think it is.
Rick - Wow! I haven’t seen her in maybe 10 years! Hey IRIS!!
Rick and Yvonne walk briskly over to Iris who is chatting with
two other women.
Both take turns hugging her.
Rick – How are you? It’s been such a long time!
Iris – Yes it has. It’s so good to see you both again!
Rick – How did you like the show?
Iris (nodding towards her two friends) – We all thought
it was FABULOUS!
Yvonne – Wasn’t it?!
Iris (to Rick) – How about you? You were one of maybe 7
men in there. Did you like it?
Rick – Yeah. I really did. Although I think I’ve heard
the word “vagina” more in the past 2 hours than I
had my entire life.
Rick – We were pretty close to the front. Where were you
Iris’s Friend # 1 – A little ways back. Not at the
very top of the room but close.
Iris’s Friend # 2 – Yes, in the center about ¾
of the way back.
Rick – Well … I guess that would make you guys the
… uh…clitoris huh?
Iris’s Friend # 1 – GASP!
Iris’s Friend # 2 – I cannot BELIEVE you said that!
Iris and Yvonne – HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA!
HA! HA! HA!
Rick – himself
Yvonne – herself
Iris – herself
Iris’s Friend # 1 – her shocked self
Iris’s Friend # 2 – her indignant self
Iris and her Friends collectively – depends who you ask
The Worly Building
The Brewery District
Rose by Any Other Name
(Bottom of the page)
book, Best Bites is available at:
C. Mehrl Bennett, Tom
Cassidy & Matthew Stolte
entry # 1081
Thursday, January 7, 1982 9:32 a.m.
by Rick Brown
Two days in a row now … I didn’t go in to work again
today. My health didn’t improve a whole lot from yesterday.
Breathing has been difficult. It’s getting me down. Plus
I feel like a real slug.
Maybe I’ll do some laundry to justify my existence. Or write
Ode to My Code”
Behold the cold!
It makes you feel old … even when you ain’t.
A cold makes you sit and wait.
You watch television shows you hate.
Blow your nose
whether it works or not.
You never get used to a head full of snot.
You can change your clothes
but you’re still stuck in the club.
‘cause everything you touch
smells like Vick’s Vapo Rub!
note February 9, 2012 – I suppose it’s comforting
to know that some things never change. My apologies to Ogden Nash.)
Shadowbox Live Stage 2
The Brewery District
by Rick Brown
spring again and that means The Flex Series presented by Raconteur
Theatre! Wow … is it really the 5th time for my favorite
collection of shorts by this small but mighty troupe? Was it really
almost 4 years ago when we krammed into tiny Kafe Kerouac for
After the Afterglow? The time may have flown by …
because Flex is a lot of fun.
This year is another first. The Big Picture consists
of 12 very short plays, all penned by Mark Harvey Levine. This
makes for a nice consistent flow of the presentation. And nothing
could make it that much more enjoyable than being upstairs at
The show begins with “A Nice Danish Boy”. This is
a delightful spoof of Hamlet given a traditional Jewish flavor.
The actors stumbled slightly at first, but quickly settled into
a groove. Sean Reid (Hamlet) and Gertrude (Susan Sheaffer) eased
into a nice banter. Amy Drake’s direction keeps the sarcasm
subtle yet pointed, effectively enhancing both Mr. Levine’s
wonderful script and the Shakespearian references.
“A Fit of Pique” involves a new couple. Annie (Carmen
Scott) is convinced she needs the constant annoyance of her sister
Lisa (Jessica Studer) in order for her beauty to shine. Her new
boyfriend Rich (Greg McGill) is unconvinced until Annie goes it
alone and becomes the girlfriend from hell. Ms. Scott’s
performance here is both hilarious and creepy. Her ease at physical
humor is amazing.
With tight direction from Mary-Aileen St. Cyr, “Howard”
becomes believable in its preposterous premise. Howard (Sean Reid)
sees himself as both an Older Man (John Feather) and a Middle
Aged Man (Andy Batt). Thanks to time travel, each stage of Howard’s
life, and the consequences of his life decisions, are revealed,
and dissected as to what choices begat regrets. The casting here
is perfect. Collectively the actors, similar in stature, give
convincing performances of the same man at odds with different
stages of himself.
Conversely, the next play is a singular monologue. In “A
Birthday Party” Jennifer Barlup portrays Jen, waiting at
a bus stop with a party in tow. Not quite a stalker and far from
girlfriend, Ms. Barlup both sweetly convinces her intentions are
good, yet implicates emotional danger. Her performance is superbly
Closing Act I is “The Big Picture”. This is hysterical.
Jason Speicher’s direction is amazingly manic, yet childlike.
Each character is a specific color in a box of crayons. And they
watch as a little girl uses each of them while drawing a big picture.
Emotionally, the crayons want to convince themselves that, even
if they are used up they will always be a part of “The Big
Picture”. Yet when Burnt Sienna (nimbly played by Chris
Martin) is taken, used, and thrown back with possibly a broken
middle, the dialogue turns deliciously existential. Each crayon
must now contemplate the present, the future, and their demise.
The ensemble is exuberant with a tad of cautious resignation.
And when Peach (a terrific Mary-Aileen St. Cyr) blurts out (and
I’m paraphrasing here) “I USED to be FLESH.
But NOW I’m called PEACH!” I almost fell
out of my chair.
Act II is just as solid. “Shades” is a brooding piece
centered on relationships. As a cube is turned occasionally exposing
a different color each time, we see the dynamics of human interaction
from a different perspective. Sean Reid effectively directed the
play with solid performances by Jenn Barlup, Andy Batt and Stephen
“Two Minute Warning” is a parody of sports commentary.
The Announcer (Jim Coe) and color Commentator (Tom Shafer) deadpan
a delightful mockery of the seriousness of sports sideline chat
during a serious play. This cultural cross-examination is quite
entertaining. Similarly, closely following is “The Candidate”
in which Barb (Catherine Rinella) prompts candidate Tom (Jim Coe)
about what terrible things are happening in the world. But the
candidate puts a politically positive spin on every epiphany.
Mr. Coe really shines here as a subtly smarmy, yet upbeat politician.
In between these two is “A Walk in the Ocean”. Thanh
Nguyen and Jill Ceneskie play Bill and Karen respectively. Bill
assumes Karen is ready to end the relationship, and he is correct.
So they take a walk … in the ocean. While charming at points
and well intended, I found this piece …ironically …
a little dry. A little tweaking here could help make the piece
more dynamic and Act II as seamless as the first.
“A Little Fresh Air” is another one actor monologue.
Andy Batt (Man) is taking a baby out for fresh air in the park.
Under the direction of Ms. St. Cyr, Mr. Batt’s portrayal
of a clueless, yet intuitive caretaker is tender, warm and genuinely
humorous. The gentleness of his self-deprecation is touching and
On the opposite end of the emotional spectrum is the abruptness
of “Take Our Picture”. Margaret (Susan Sheaffer) and
Phillip (Tom Shafer) stop Wendell (Chris Martin) and ask him to
take their picture. After all, it is the place they first met.
But as the story unfolds, the couple comes to the realization
that they need to go their separate ways. Wendell then proposes
they get a picture of their ending. Amazingly, the cast effectively
shuns sentimentality while avoiding cynicism. Mr. Martin’s
Wendell in particular, sees that an ending is also a new beginning.
With an inquisitive warmth, Martin brings an effectively real
ending, cunningly avoiding what could in lesser hands, have been
Closing The Big Picture is a joyously goofy, “School
of Thought”. Stephen Woosley’s direction is delightfully
Dionysian. Fish of all colors, ages, and emotional moods swim
chaotically around the stage blub, blub, blubbering a dialogue
that is somehow coherent in its nonsense. The ensemble is an enchanting
end to Act II paralleling the close of Act I. This makes Raconteur’s
presentation a very nice homage to Mark Harvey Levine’s
The Big Picture at Club Diversity presented by Raconteur
Theatre is a night out I highly recommend. The show runs until
April 21st. For more information and show times please go to:
more information about Club Diversity please go to: http://www.clubdiversity.biz
Non Fiction Theater of the Truly Mundane
by Rick Brown
Captain Tony’s Saloon (The original Sloppy Joes’)
in Key West, Florida. Stage right is a counter where souvenirs
are sold. A very old Captain Tony sits behind it. Stage left is
a pool table area. Directly in front of the tables, Gary Hempsey
(a popular local singer/songwriter http://www.garyhempseykeywest.com/)
sits on a stool playing “Hotel California”. Center
stage is a rectangular bar where about 7 or 8 people sit.. Rick
and his buddy Dan are at the side closest to Gary drinking beer
and enjoying the music.
Rick – this is a cool place
Dan – yeah. Love this guy’s
Gary finishes “Hotel California”
Dan – do you know “Southern
Gary begins playing Dan’s request.
Mid-song a middle aged woman walks
in accompanied by a 20 something woman. They sit at a table just
to Dan’s left. Dan, always the gentleman, strikes up a conversation
with the two women.
Dan (a few minutes later to Rick)
– those two are a mother and daughter. They’re on
vacation and they came all the way from South America!
Rick – Wow.
Dan resumes his conversation with
the two women while Gary finishes playing “Southern Cross”.
Dan – Hey GARY! These two want
to hear “Hotel California”!
Gary –I just played “Hotel
Dan - But they weren’t here
Gary – Too bad! I just fucking
– C’mon Gary! Play “Hotel California”
Gary – I just fucking PLAYED “Hotel California”!
Dan – They want to hear it
– I just fucking told you! I JUST FUCK …
KING PLAAAAAAAAYED “HOTEL CALIFORNIA”!!
Dan – Have a heart Gary!
Gary – Just FUCKING played
Dan – C’mon Gary! They
came all the way from Columbia, South America!!
Gary looks at the women intently,
pauses for a few minutes and smiles.
(earnestly) – Can you get me some WEED??!!!
Rick – himself
The 2 Columbian Women – their Columbian selves
Gary – his fucking self
Captain Tony – his old self
If you’ve almost
Hmmm # 43