Created with Sketch.
The Urban Erma
6 minutes | Jul 13, 2016
It's Always the Year of the Asshole
At a recent comedy show there was a table of disruptive people. They weren’t heckling the comedians directly, just talking animatedly amongst themselves. This seemed odd since this wasn’t a random bar show. It was a fundraiser with tickets sold in advance. These people had chosen to be there and yet their incessant chatter created a distracting undercurrent of noise that lasted the entire show...
4 minutes | Jul 4, 2016
At the Cleaners: How the Everyday Can Just Flat Out Get Away From You
I went to the cleaners the other day and as I pulled out my last item of clothing I saw a crumpled claim ticket in the bottom of the tote bag. I used to put my cleaners tickets on the refrigerator so I’d remember them, so of course I didn’t. My refrigerator is a jumbled graveyard of baby pictures of grown people, save the date wedding invitations for divorced couples, calendars from the turn of the century, and business cards for defunct companies. I know. My refrigerator really needs to get its shit together. So I decided to put my cleaners ticket in the bottom of the bag of clothes to be taken out. Makes sense right? A good plan predicated on going to the cleaners on a fairly regular basis... Read the Post
3 minutes | Jun 26, 2016
When You Want to Hug A Stranger in Dunkin Donuts
In Dunkin Donuts there was a Young Woman sitting at the table next to me. She was talking on her cell phone and upset because another girl had deliberately shoved her out-of-the-way to get on the bus. And in an I-can’t-take-it-anymore moment she shoved the girl back and they got into a fight. Tearfully she said, “This happens all the time. I don’t want to fight. This is not who I am. I’m sorry. This doesn’t happen when I’m with you. I feel safer with you.” ----more---- It’s worth noting that this Young Woman did not look… hmm… how shall I say… homegrown. Her t-shirt and jeans were innocuous enough, but her close-cropped hair and beautiful, clear dark skin will always make her look foreign-born even if she, like me, was made in America. And in the xenophobic pendulum swing we’re in, not looking like you’re from around here seems to give people license to treat you as “other”; like shit; even by people who have themselves been historically mistreated and should know better. (Yes, Brothers and Sisters. I’m looking at you.) I wasn’t trying to listen in on this woman’s conversation. Dunkin’ Donuts is my mobile office. When I’m sitting in there, laptop open, I’m on the grind. But when you don’t have phone booths these are the types of open-air conversations you’ll hear. Trying hard not to cry, sniffing for all she was worth the Young Woman said to her friend, “I’m an adult and yet I still feel like a child. Why does this keep happening? I’m scared all the time.” Her raw distress broke my heart. The mama bear in me wanted to hug her but that would’ve been presumptuous, intrusive, and possibly a felony. I was grateful she at least had someone she could call and talk to. And so, without a word, I pulled a pack of pocket tissues out of my bag and slipped them to her. Maybe in that very small gesture she’ll know that we’re not all like that; that shoving people who are not superficially like us out of the way is not who we are. Well, it is, but aren’t we supposed to be striving for better? It’s our ability to embrace each other that makes us human. So I’ll restock my handbag with pocket tissues. These days I seem to keep running out.
6 minutes | Apr 13, 2016
Bitch, Am I Boring You?
After our second session I fired my therapist. Two meetings are what it took for me to see we weren’t going to work out. And I’d really hoped we would. READ THE BLOG ----more---- Leighann Lord is a veteran stand-up comedian seen on HBO, Comedy Central, and The View. She is the author of Dict Jokes and Real Women Do it Standing Up; and is a co-host of StarTalk Radio, with Neil de Grasse Tyson. Follow her @LeighannLord | VeryFunnyLady.com. To join TeamLeighann: Text FunnyLady to 22828. Listen to the podcast of her blog on iTunes and Stitcher Radio.
4 minutes | Mar 27, 2016
A Death in the Family
I found out about the death of a cousin on Facebook because that’s how we learn of these things now. READ THE BLOG --- Leighann Lord is a veteran stand-up comedian seen on HBO, Comedy Central, and The View. She is the author of Dict Jokes and Real Women Do it Standing Up; and is a co-host of StarTalk Radio, with Neil de Grasse Tyson. Follow her @LeighannLord | VeryFunnyLady.com. To join TeamLeighann: Text FunnyLady to 22828. Listen to the podcast of her blog on iTunes and Stitcher Radio.
6 minutes | Mar 17, 2016
And How Are You Today? A Tale of Reverse Customer Service
First of all I had no business being in Macy’s, especially the 34th Street Mothership. But I was in the neighborhood, I needed a bra, and so there I was strolling through the lingerie department like I had money and boobs. READ AND ENJOY THE BLOG The Urban Erma, the longest running column on StageTimeMagazine.com, was created and written by stand-up comedian Leighann Lord. Listen to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher Radio. Get her e-books on AMAZON!
3 minutes | Mar 7, 2016
Today Is My Mom's Birthday and She's Not Happy About It
Today is my Mom’s birthday and she’s not happy about it. How can she be? She (and she is not alone in this) has succumbed to the constant subliminal and overt cultural messages that discount the value of older people in general and older women specifically. ----more---- We’re finding ways for people to live longer, but not better; unless they can afford it. What’s the co-pay on an extra decade? Makeup, cosmetic surgery, teeth whitening strips... at what age do you get to just be happy with yourself and not be a project to be fixed? Does the scaffolding ever get taken down? We praise people for aging gracefully, which is code for growing older without showing it. This makes every gray hair, wrinkle, and joint pain an indictment and somehow a personal failing. Act your age, unless you’re over 40 and then the race is on to act younger then you ever were. I wish I could talk my Mom out of her birthday blues, but I get it. If you’ve battled racism and sexism, then ageism can feel like the sucker punch you didn’t see coming. And we’re both old enough to know that the Pollyanna platitudes don’t cut it: blah, blah, blah, god’s plan... blah, blah, blah you’re lucky... blah, blah, blah at least you have... These statements minimize someone’s feelings, adding insult to injury. So, no presents this year. The one thing she asked for I can’t give her. She said, “I wish I could be me all over again.” Ice cream cake, balloons, and a nice dinner will have to suffice. The Urban Erma, the longest running column on StageTimeMagazine.com, was created and written by stand-up comedian Leighann Lord. Listen to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher Radio. Get her e-books on AMAZON!
3 minutes | Jan 6, 2016
Don't Hate on the Skinny Girl at the Gym
Okay, we’re a few days in and you’re still up for making a good-faith effort on your New Year’s resolutions. If one of them is going to the gym, do yourself a favor. When you get there, please don’t hate on the skinny girl. READ THE BLOG
4 minutes | Dec 10, 2015
Indignation vs Communication
I was excited about a new bit of material I’d written because I’d only thought of it that morning; fleshed it out that day, and gotten it up on-stage that night. That’s my personal stand-up comedy trifecta. With some tweaking I think it can really be something. CLICK HERE TO READ THE BLOG
4 minutes | Nov 18, 2015
A View From the Bridge
The first straight play (non-musical) I did in college was Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge. That was the semester I was supposed to be taking a break from theater to focus on my studies. I only went to the audition to help out as a reader. And because I had nothing to lose I gave it my all and I got cast in lead. And so it was a wonderful surprise when my then director and former professor recently invited me to see a matinée performance of the new Broadway production of the show at The Lyceum Theater. CLICK HERE TO READ THE BLOG
5 minutes | Sep 30, 2015
Geriatric Stranger Danger
New Yorkers are not rude people. It’s just that we can get through the day without a lot of extraneous chitchat. We can communicate with each other with a quick chin lift, a head nod, and if need be, a series of simple yet eloquent hand gestures. When I first began travelling outside the City, I was baffled by the strangers who spoke to me for what seemed like no reason. ‘Good morning?’ What the hell is that supposed to mean? Is this a set up? What kind of scam are you running here? ... READ THE BLOG
10 minutes | Sep 14, 2015
My First Dragon Con
My Seven Favorite Moments from The Con I was invited to perform at my very first Dragon Con in Atlanta, Georgia. For science fiction/fantasy fans this is like being asked to suit up and be the starting quarterback for your favorite team during the Super Bowl. I am not a casual sci-fi fan. It’s my area of expertise when I co-host StarTalk with Neil de Grasse Tyson. I’ll spare you my long list of book, movie, and TV show loves. Just know that my geek runs deep, or so I thought until I got to Dragon Con. READ THE BLOG
5 minutes | Jun 10, 2015
Mission Accomplished: Welcome to Fog-a-licious San Francisco
I’m geeked to be working in San Francisco this summer. They say its California’s version of New York, so I feel right at home in another city I can't afford to live in. Since it’s my first time in this bucket list city – I already gotchu, Minneapolis – I intend to make the most it. My first official tourist act was strolling through The Mission. Well, actually, the first Cali thing I did was go shopping at Ross. I bought an $8 dress that probably won’t last the week, but it's pretty and it made me happy. READ THE BLOG
5 minutes | May 26, 2015
Bite My Shiny Metal Ass
Thanks to Netflix I’ve now watched all 10 seasons of Futurama, the science fiction animated cartoon series created by Matt Groening (Simpsons). It began in 1999 on FOX and ended in 2013 on Comedy Central. Digesting 14 years worth of an awarding-winning TV show in just a few months adds to my sci-fi street cred but it’s changed me. READ THE BLOG
2 minutes | May 13, 2015
Name That Dog
When a friend group texted that she was getting a pair of dogs – golden doodles, adorable – for her daughters, we immediately began suggesting pet names. Over the course of two days (geez, maybe it was three) we all had a blast sharing possible nom de pups that I saw had cultural, musical, and generational relevance. In an example of the upside of drinking and texting we began with "Barnes & Noble" and ended with "Simon & Schuster." Take a look at our list and see if we missed any. Feel free to add to the list and share which one you like the best. READ THE BLOG
4 minutes | Apr 30, 2015
Hey Baby Girl
“Baby Girl.” That’s what James Evans, the father on Good Times, called his daughter, Thelma. Years later it’s also how Bernie Mac referred to his youngest niece on his self-titled TV show. Baby Girl is a familial term of endearment within the African-American community. In my family I’ve had many pet names including – but not limited to – Boo, Slow Poke, Madam, and She Who Must Be Obeyed 2.0. READ THE BLOG
3 minutes | Apr 21, 2015
Someone said, “Leighann, what’s your favorite romantic movie?” Believe it or not I’ve never been asked that before so I had to think about it for a second. My head tilted to the left, my eyes stared off into space, and my body went still. I do that sometimes when completely caught off guard. It looks like I’m processing a data download from My Mothership. “What’s my favorite romantic movie?” I was as shocked as anyone when I heard myself say, Hellraiser. READ THE BLOG Leighann Lord is a stand-up comedian, author and co-host of StarTalk with Neil deGrasse Tyson. Get her e-books on AMAZON!
6 minutes | Feb 24, 2015
The Middle of the Night Phone Call
One of my biggest fears is that I’ll get a Phone Call From Home in the Middle of the Night when I’m too far away to do anything about it and once again I’ll be angry that we still don’t have Star Trek transporter technology; and disgusted that we invest more time and money in restricting human movement then in facilitating it. READ AND ENJOY THE BLOG at TheUrbanErma.com.
7 minutes | Jan 22, 2015
A Day in the Life of a Standup Comic: Just Writing
One day when I was waiting for the subway, a young woman with an expensive camera introduced herself as a Columbia University graduate student in its photojournalism program and asked permission to take my picture. If it was a scam – and I always think everything’s a scam – it sounded like a good one so I said, yes. When my train came and we were about to part ways I gave her my business card hoping she’d send me one of the pictures but equally sure I’d never hear from her again. But she emailed me that night and asked if I would be the subject of her day-in-the-life class project. Again, I said, yes. READ THE BLOG http://www.TheUrbanErma.com
6 minutes | Jan 1, 2015
A Year Without A Dog
We lost our dog, Rolie, last January 2nd. Everyone says it’s hard to lose a pet because their love is unconditional. That’s a nice sentiment but they clearly didn’t know my, Rolie. His Doggie Daddy often said, “Rolie has more personality than most people.” So true. His Lordship was moody, surly; and love – as he doled it out – was completely conditional and on his terms. This was puzzling since he had terrible separation anxiety and followed us around everywhere, but got annoyed when we did the same to him. When he felt crowded and wanted his space he’d up and leave – sometimes mid-tummy rub. And we were to consider ourselves dismissed. READ THE BLOG
Terms of Service
Do Not Sell My Personal Information
© Stitcher 2022