I love cabaret. It had been awhile, and I was already missing the fishnets and lace ruffle pants, so I just knew I was going to adore Curvicious from the moment I passed by the Blue Macaw and saw the poster announcing an “all-star burlesque tribute to your favorite iconic horror films.”
Burlesque meets bloody movies? There was no way I was going to miss it.
Andrea loved the idea. We both left our feather boas at home when we left Mexico and Spain, but we’d go without them, anyway. When the day arrives, however, she texts — she can’t do it. I don´t feel like going alone, so I think about Jordi. You can always count on Spaniards for last-minute plans.
As I wait for him at the door, I hear someone calling my name. “Marta? Marta?” I turn around to see Marilyn smoking a cigarette. She is so sweet. I met her while making a multimedia piece about the store she works in.
“Have you ever been to a burlesque show before?” she asks. I have, but not yet in the States. “They are the best,” she tells me, pointing toward the lounge.
Jordi arrives with a friend and we go in. “Beautiful ID!” says the doorman, looking at my colorful Spanish card. I don’t tell him how strange it feels to be asked about my age when I’m almost 30. I should be used to it by now.
Curvicious Cabaret is a monthly themed show. It started last March in the Blue Macaw, and features a number of experienced men and women who perform original material.
We order beers and Jordi explains his next assignment. Some guy is about to start distributing chocolates made of weed butter that he prepares, and he wants Jordi to design the packages. They will be cute, small and golden, he says.
“Let’s take one of those cupcakes,” I say, pointing to a small table in the corner. “Are they made of weed?” Jordi asks. “Why would they be?” “Now I think everything is made of weed,” he replies seriously.
His friend goes over to the table and shouts back, “Do you prefer the spiders or the little pumpkins?”
“I’m not taking anything made of weed,” Jordi insists.
His friend brings us one with a spider and another with candies. I remove the plastic arachnid and taste the chocolate. The show is about to start.
“We’re in the sexiest month!” On the stage is an exuberant blonde woman with a black and red corset and a furry bunny cap. How could anyone not have a crush on her? “Scary sexy!” she says.
Everybody gets closer — close enough to touch. Just about 30 people are watching the show, but it doesn’t feel awkward. It feels like one of those times when you believe you’re cooler because you’re enjoying something special.
And that’s what it turns out to be.
We see Jason licking Freddy’s blades. We see an amputated foot thrown by a lady in pasties. We see Alien kissing Predator and the girl from “The Ring” coming off a cardboard box and losing her wig. Oh, and my favorite: Pinhead bursting the balloons under her cape while dancing to the stripper music.
People around me seem to be enjoying the show as much as I am.
The sexy blonde bunny asks the audience what we are going to wear on Halloween. A woman says she’ll be dressed as Paul Auster, and everybody laughs. No matter how hilarious that would be, I know I’ve heard it wrong. I ask her later. “Mystery Science Theater 3000,” she says. Gotcha. I write it down with a borrowed Betty Boop pen.
Although his friend has to leave early, Jordi and I stay a bit after the show has ended. Jack the stripper is around, having a drink. I tell the producers I had a great evening.
By the time we leave, we realize that the last BART train is probably gone. I tell Jordi I’ll wait until he gets a cab, and he asks me how I found out about Curvicious. “Just walking down the street,” I tell him. “So you like your new neighborhood?” I do.
I reach into my bag to look for my keys. The little plastic spider and the pen I should have returned are still there, along with next month’s flyer. November 17: Boobs Don’t Cry, a Tribute to New Wave. See you there.