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May 27, 2020

Double Snack with Denzel

Double Snack with Denzel

In this episode, Minneapolis based Drag Queen, Lala Luzious chats with Minneapolis actor, writer, and director, Denzel Belin! They discuss the Denzel's career and the struggles of being black queer men Follow Denzel on his social Media Twitter:...


In this episode, Minneapolis based Drag Queen, Lala Luzious chats with Minneapolis actor, writer, and director, Denzel Belin! They discuss the Denzel's career and the struggles of being black queer men Follow Denzel on his social Media Twitter: @from_washington Instagram:@from_washington   Learn more about The Brave New Workshop at https://www.bravenewworkshop.com/ Need another snack? Head on over to www.snacksizepodcast.com If you are a new listener to Snack Size, we would love to hear from you! Don’t be afraid to say hello at lala@snacksizepodcast.com Follow Snack Size: The Podcast on Twitter: @podcast_snack Follow Lala on Instagram: @lalaluzious Intro and Interlude Music for "Snack Size"  is Lioness (Instrumental) by DayFox https://soundcloud.com/dayfox
Transcript
WEBVTT 1 00:00:01.199 --> 00:00:05.080 Hey, what's up world? Welcome to snack size, the podcast that will 2 00:00:05.120 --> 00:00:09.830 drag you into your most fabulous life. I'm your host, La La Luscious, 3 00:00:10.070 --> 00:00:13.669 also known as the snack of the twin cities. I decided for myself 4 00:00:13.789 --> 00:00:16.589 that I can be whatever I want to be. So I decided to be 5 00:00:16.670 --> 00:00:20.629 a drag queen, and if I can live my dreams, you can to. 6 00:00:21.030 --> 00:00:24.859 The time has come to believing yourself enough to turn your ideas into more 7 00:00:24.980 --> 00:00:27.980 than mere words, and, no matter what you are doing in life or 8 00:00:28.019 --> 00:00:31.500 where you want to go, I want to help you get there fabulously. 9 00:00:32.020 --> 00:00:41.090 Our ten minutes starts now. Hey, snacks, welcome back to snack size. 10 00:00:41.570 --> 00:00:45.929 Today's episode is very special to me because we are featuring the winner of 11 00:00:46.130 --> 00:00:50.240 my casting call, which as for people to send me their stories and I 12 00:00:50.320 --> 00:00:53.880 would pick one person to come on here and share it with you all. 13 00:00:54.240 --> 00:00:59.520 Our guests today is Denzel Bilin, an actor, improviser, writer and director 14 00:00:59.960 --> 00:01:03.989 currently based in Minneapolis Minnesota. He currently writes and performs with the brave new 15 00:01:04.109 --> 00:01:10.670 workshop as a member of their mainstage team and for Minnesota tonight. Denzel has 16 00:01:10.709 --> 00:01:15.469 worked with many theaters, including uprising theater company Phoenix. Theater, freshwater theater 17 00:01:15.750 --> 00:01:22.299 and Minnesota French. He is also one half of brother brother and Improv duo 18 00:01:22.459 --> 00:01:26.060 that performs often at huge theater here in Minneapolis and is played festivals in the 19 00:01:26.099 --> 00:01:32.060 mini Polis area as well as Boston Massachusetts. It is my honor to welcome 20 00:01:32.140 --> 00:01:38.890 Denzel to snack size. Let's give them a call, hid and sell welcome 21 00:01:38.930 --> 00:01:42.049 to snack size. Hi, thank you so much for having me. Thank 22 00:01:42.090 --> 00:01:46.930 you so much for being on here with me today. Denzel won our casting 23 00:01:47.010 --> 00:01:51.319 call contest in which I was looking for anyone who is an artist or a 24 00:01:51.400 --> 00:01:55.120 creative person to tell their story, and I knew from the moment I got 25 00:01:55.200 --> 00:02:00.000 your email that you were definitely the winner of the casting call for the listeners. 26 00:02:00.079 --> 00:02:05.989 The email subject says, laughing at the bullshit, how finding satirical sketch 27 00:02:06.109 --> 00:02:10.349 comedy helped me process the world. So I am very excited to hear about 28 00:02:10.469 --> 00:02:15.550 how your life as a comedian has helped to live a happy and fulfilled life. 29 00:02:15.939 --> 00:02:19.539 I know that this is a really hard time for creative people, so 30 00:02:19.860 --> 00:02:23.060 how are you holding up during this time? As of today that we are 31 00:02:23.139 --> 00:02:25.780 recording this, I am doing pretty good, I have to say. All 32 00:02:25.900 --> 00:02:30.770 things considered as a performing artist, there has been lately a lot of really 33 00:02:31.610 --> 00:02:36.889 big announcements. Particularly the Gutthree Theater, which is our big regional theater, 34 00:02:37.090 --> 00:02:40.490 just announced that they are not doing any shows until March of two thousand and 35 00:02:40.490 --> 00:02:44.599 twenty one. Oh my gosh. Yeah, and I know a lot of 36 00:02:44.680 --> 00:02:47.479 theaters are influenced in like take note of what the gut three is doing. 37 00:02:47.520 --> 00:02:52.840 So we could find ourselves in this place where smaller theaters are maybe taking a 38 00:02:53.000 --> 00:02:58.909 year or more off to sort of recoup and get back together in order to 39 00:02:59.069 --> 00:03:02.110 do what they love to do. I don't know where my particular theater do. 40 00:03:02.229 --> 00:03:06.550 I work at the brave new workshops landing. Fortunately, we are in 41 00:03:06.669 --> 00:03:09.990 a position where we are creating content and I'm still getting somewhat of a paycheck, 42 00:03:10.150 --> 00:03:15.699 but we all know that that's only for unlimited amount of time and we're 43 00:03:15.819 --> 00:03:17.180 just happy to do the work. I think you had told me that the 44 00:03:17.300 --> 00:03:23.939 brave new workshop is the oldest Improv workshop in the United States technically the longest 45 00:03:23.979 --> 00:03:30.689 running satirical comedy theater in North America. Wow, though, this content that 46 00:03:30.770 --> 00:03:32.409 you're creating now online, where can we find it? A lot of it 47 00:03:32.729 --> 00:03:38.610 is through the brave new workshop. I've also done some ticktock for another organization 48 00:03:38.689 --> 00:03:44.039 called Take Action Minnesota. I also am going to do a really fun playwriting 49 00:03:44.080 --> 00:03:49.280 project with some student through the Pillsbury House. So but that will be later. 50 00:03:50.080 --> 00:03:53.639 That sounds like you've had some really exciting projects during this quarantine. So 51 00:03:53.879 --> 00:03:55.469 are you? Would you say that you've been able to keep yourself inspired? 52 00:03:55.909 --> 00:04:00.349 I wouldn't say as sort of consistently and feverently as I have been in the 53 00:04:00.469 --> 00:04:03.870 past, but I've been able to like write some things. I've been able 54 00:04:03.909 --> 00:04:10.900 to take care of myself artistically and honestly, it really helps my soul knowing 55 00:04:10.939 --> 00:04:15.659 that I'm getting paid for it. So often as artist we are pushing our 56 00:04:15.659 --> 00:04:18.019 own craft on our own time, spending our own money, you know, 57 00:04:18.180 --> 00:04:23.699 always netting a negative amount. It's sometimes hard, hard to step back and 58 00:04:23.779 --> 00:04:27.610 be like, Oh, I could be writing that next great American play, 59 00:04:27.970 --> 00:04:30.250 but that's going to be my time, my effort, and I won't see 60 00:04:30.290 --> 00:04:34.850 any finance until it sells, if it sells. So tell me about a 61 00:04:34.889 --> 00:04:40.360 little bit about how you started in comedy. Yeah, so when I went 62 00:04:40.600 --> 00:04:45.279 to college at Sat Olif College, I didn't really know anyone. I hit 63 00:04:45.360 --> 00:04:49.279 win serve on this gut insting and I had met someone who I was really 64 00:04:49.399 --> 00:04:53.310 you know, kicking it off with having a good friendship, and I was 65 00:04:53.389 --> 00:04:55.269 like, what are you up to tonight? And she was like, I'm 66 00:04:55.310 --> 00:05:00.029 gonna go to check out this improv practice. You know, she explained it 67 00:05:00.069 --> 00:05:02.110 as most people typically do. It's very whose line is it? anyways, 68 00:05:02.430 --> 00:05:05.389 and I was like, well, I know stage. Let me go check 69 00:05:05.430 --> 00:05:11.579 this out. So I went there and I was really fascinated by this idea 70 00:05:11.620 --> 00:05:14.740 of getting the chance to perform. You didn't need to memorize any lines. 71 00:05:15.500 --> 00:05:19.139 That was oh so nice, because time consuming sound. was like, why 72 00:05:19.259 --> 00:05:23.889 not, I'll give it a try. And you know, I'll be honest, 73 00:05:23.930 --> 00:05:26.850 for this first year, year and a half, two years, I 74 00:05:27.089 --> 00:05:31.089 wasn't particularly good, but no one should be, or really is when they 75 00:05:31.209 --> 00:05:35.079 first start out. But I never think it's a bad thing that when you 76 00:05:35.240 --> 00:05:39.519 first try something, if you're not brilliant at it, I think it's okay. 77 00:05:40.439 --> 00:05:43.480 So I kept doing that all four years of my time. is saying 78 00:05:43.480 --> 00:05:46.959 all of it. So I decide to stay in Minnesota. Through my Improv 79 00:05:47.040 --> 00:05:49.790 work, I was able to be the lot of different people and so there 80 00:05:49.870 --> 00:05:54.029 was one day where I got a message from a friend who was currently in 81 00:05:54.149 --> 00:05:57.949 a show at the brave new workshop and he was like Hey, I need 82 00:05:58.189 --> 00:06:02.750 to ask if you are busy and we are looking for like something extra and 83 00:06:02.870 --> 00:06:04.620 fun to do, and I was like sure, I tell he's use a 84 00:06:04.620 --> 00:06:09.939 little bit of extra cash. And I went into this meeting and I'll be 85 00:06:10.100 --> 00:06:12.819 honest, I thought I was there because I was like maybe it's like a 86 00:06:12.860 --> 00:06:16.259 serving job, you know, maybe I could run front of how something like 87 00:06:16.420 --> 00:06:23.769 that, and I quickly realize that he was asking me to understudy for the 88 00:06:23.889 --> 00:06:29.290 show and I did not know that and that excited me. That was such 89 00:06:29.290 --> 00:06:32.920 an opportunity and of course I said yes, I'm going to understudy for the 90 00:06:33.000 --> 00:06:38.360 brave new workshop comedy theater. They sketch comedy thing, and then I went 91 00:06:38.439 --> 00:06:44.000 home and I was like what exactly is sketch comedy? But I quickly realize 92 00:06:44.040 --> 00:06:47.310 I need to take a class in what sketch comedy was, particularly the writing, 93 00:06:47.350 --> 00:06:49.990 even though I wasn't doing writing. I want to get into the world. 94 00:06:50.509 --> 00:06:55.670 So I took my first class at strike theater for sketch comedy writing, 95 00:06:55.949 --> 00:06:59.509 and everyone's going around talking about why they're taking the class. A lot of 96 00:06:59.550 --> 00:07:01.259 people are like, you know, I'm a teacher and I'm looking for something 97 00:07:01.379 --> 00:07:05.980 different. And then there's me. I'm about to understudy at the brave new 98 00:07:06.019 --> 00:07:11.300 workshop and I figured I should understand what sketch comedy is, and everyone there 99 00:07:11.459 --> 00:07:18.769 was like what I was tempting at the time a division of a big bank 100 00:07:18.970 --> 00:07:24.170 doing a small thing for them, and it just wasn't what I had spent 101 00:07:24.250 --> 00:07:28.490 four year studying theater to do. Exactly. Yeah, so I took the 102 00:07:28.569 --> 00:07:32.920 leap and I left that relatively well paying job to go and, you know, 103 00:07:33.319 --> 00:07:38.839 take a little bit of a pay cut and pursue art all on the 104 00:07:38.959 --> 00:07:43.759 fly, making the decision to kind of just jump into what you love? 105 00:07:43.879 --> 00:07:48.509 Was that a scary decision to make? Absolutely, it was truly terrifying, 106 00:07:48.750 --> 00:07:54.750 but I feel like it's terrifying the way that, like bungee jumping is terrifying, 107 00:07:55.029 --> 00:08:00.180 like you know that there's gonna be a thrill and at a certain point 108 00:08:00.379 --> 00:08:05.579 you can only experience that thrill once you step off. But I never thought 109 00:08:05.180 --> 00:08:11.300 I would make a substantial amount of my income with me being on the stage 110 00:08:11.939 --> 00:08:15.730 performing. What is your creative process when it comes to writing a sketch. 111 00:08:16.250 --> 00:08:20.649 My creative process is I have to be authentically me as I'm writing. When 112 00:08:20.689 --> 00:08:24.529 I first started writing, I think I was writing towards what I really thought 113 00:08:24.649 --> 00:08:28.120 was funny, and then I had to learn, like the skills behind it, 114 00:08:28.360 --> 00:08:33.200 what makes a good sketch piece. So I had to learn like jokes. 115 00:08:33.240 --> 00:08:37.320 I had to learn how to punch up a script, I had to 116 00:08:37.360 --> 00:08:39.559 learn how to give notes to other scripts. I just need to learn these 117 00:08:39.639 --> 00:08:43.269 technical things that I didn't have. But now that I feel stronger in those 118 00:08:43.309 --> 00:08:46.909 skills, I can sort return to that base thing and be like, I 119 00:08:48.190 --> 00:08:52.789 like this idea, this is me. When we talked before the show, 120 00:08:52.029 --> 00:08:56.940 you had mentioned that you had to draw a line between you and your art. 121 00:08:56.379 --> 00:09:00.379 What are the challenges you face in regards to that and how did you 122 00:09:00.500 --> 00:09:03.379 overcome them? Yeah, particularly with sketch comedy, the way we write at 123 00:09:03.379 --> 00:09:07.779 the brake and workshop, so often we write stuff like for our selves. 124 00:09:09.340 --> 00:09:15.929 However, that also blurs everything and if you write yourself into like the funny 125 00:09:16.090 --> 00:09:22.210 comedic role and then someone at the tables like I didn't find this particularly funny, 126 00:09:22.330 --> 00:09:26.519 where the Jukes were the joke, it almost feels like you're not funny, 127 00:09:26.399 --> 00:09:31.639 you you're missing out on something, and I had a hard time distinguishing 128 00:09:31.679 --> 00:09:35.240 this new thing, this new form, this writing. If they might, 129 00:09:35.320 --> 00:09:39.230 if they hate that, they must hate my style of humor. And then 130 00:09:39.629 --> 00:09:43.590 the more conversations I had, the more I learned about my art and really, 131 00:09:43.750 --> 00:09:46.830 I would say my artistic director, Kault mcwen, he's like, I 132 00:09:48.429 --> 00:09:54.740 keep hiring you because I see what you bring to the table and I eventually 133 00:09:54.779 --> 00:09:56.059 just have to trust that. And they like I wouldn't be able to do 134 00:09:56.220 --> 00:10:03.259 show after shafter show if there wasn't something in me that was working. Why 135 00:10:03.259 --> 00:10:09.289 should I be harder on myself then the person who has other options? Something 136 00:10:09.330 --> 00:10:13.210 that people struggle with, especially creative people, is that we have it in 137 00:10:13.250 --> 00:10:16.370 our minds that sometimes we don't deserve the opportunities that we're getting. And while 138 00:10:16.649 --> 00:10:20.720 there is definitely times in life where you will have to work really, really 139 00:10:20.759 --> 00:10:26.080 hard for what you want, there's also the battle of accepting the fact that 140 00:10:26.399 --> 00:10:28.480 this is my time and I am where I'm supposed to be. Because then 141 00:10:28.519 --> 00:10:31.159 our minds sometimes we don't know how to handle that, especially as artist, 142 00:10:31.200 --> 00:10:35.240 when you struggle for so long, when a break comes, you don't even 143 00:10:35.240 --> 00:10:37.629 know what to do, because all you know is the struggle. Right. 144 00:10:37.190 --> 00:10:41.470 So accepting those people in your life and listening to them and allowing them to 145 00:10:41.509 --> 00:10:46.350 accurge you is super important for following your dreams. Yeah, and I really 146 00:10:46.389 --> 00:10:50.980 like what you mentioned there, because I feel like there have been so many 147 00:10:52.019 --> 00:10:58.700 times where I've had such a hard go at certain things that the comfort of 148 00:10:58.340 --> 00:11:05.570 being fine or being good or great is so unfamiliar that I sort of that's 149 00:11:05.610 --> 00:11:11.889 what becomes the uncomfortable thing. So to be put in a situation where primarily 150 00:11:11.009 --> 00:11:16.809 what I did was right and perform after sort of having those experiences, was 151 00:11:16.370 --> 00:11:20.919 like why am I here? To a certain degree, and especially being a 152 00:11:22.679 --> 00:11:28.559 black queer man, I was like I'm the diversity. If you look at 153 00:11:28.600 --> 00:11:33.870 me, you know that I'm diverse, quote unquote, and so, you 154 00:11:33.990 --> 00:11:39.350 know, I had those nagging thoughts in my head and it just really was 155 00:11:39.549 --> 00:11:43.990 me undercutting all the work I had been doing so I could write something really 156 00:11:43.029 --> 00:11:46.389 amazing. It can make people laugh, but there's still part in my head 157 00:11:46.470 --> 00:11:50.539 that's like, well, you know, you're here because you're the black kid, 158 00:11:50.220 --> 00:11:56.980 which is again nothing that I got from them themselves. Right, this 159 00:11:56.220 --> 00:12:03.250 is all me projecting onto them, based off of life really, and me 160 00:12:03.850 --> 00:12:07.289 having to be so aware of my race, of my sexuality so early and 161 00:12:07.610 --> 00:12:13.970 understanding what that means for the way that people often perceived me. I put 162 00:12:13.330 --> 00:12:18.759 that and those guards that I had onto my work, which in fact hindered 163 00:12:20.039 --> 00:12:22.679 my ability to grow. You know, it's a very interesting that you brought 164 00:12:22.720 --> 00:12:26.240 that up, because one of the things I struggled with when I found success 165 00:12:26.360 --> 00:12:33.870 here was actually pressure from the Black Queer community about my success. What I 166 00:12:35.269 --> 00:12:37.629 first moved here, I was lucky enough to be named the host of a 167 00:12:37.830 --> 00:12:41.029 very big show and a lot of the black quer community came to me and 168 00:12:41.070 --> 00:12:43.940 they said, well, you know, they've never picked a black person for 169 00:12:45.019 --> 00:12:48.539 that. I can't believe that they picked you because they've never had a black 170 00:12:48.580 --> 00:12:52.460 coast before. And while there's an important moment for that when a person of 171 00:12:52.580 --> 00:12:56.779 color sort of, I guess, find success and anything it's important, at 172 00:12:56.820 --> 00:13:01.009 the same time I think one of the biggest pressures for me was, did 173 00:13:01.049 --> 00:13:03.610 they only pick me for that reason and then all your talent and all your 174 00:13:03.690 --> 00:13:07.809 hard work solely goes out the window because you only become focused on is that 175 00:13:07.929 --> 00:13:11.450 the only reason I'm here and that never feels good. So I'm glad that 176 00:13:11.490 --> 00:13:15.960 you found a way to work through that and listen to the people around you 177 00:13:16.279 --> 00:13:18.960 and realize that it's your talent and what you have to offer just as a 178 00:13:20.039 --> 00:13:24.639 person is what's propelling you for it in your field. So often with in 179 00:13:24.759 --> 00:13:30.149 our communities it becomes this we're all fighting for this one spot sort of idea 180 00:13:30.389 --> 00:13:33.509 that you know, there can only be one black person on the stage, 181 00:13:33.549 --> 00:13:37.509 they can only have, you know, one black girl in the drag show. 182 00:13:37.950 --> 00:13:43.100 But what I've been doing personally in order to combat that is, like 183 00:13:43.299 --> 00:13:48.100 I've been uplifting, like everyone right, like I take my success, I 184 00:13:48.299 --> 00:13:54.059 take my joys, I take where I have found my height in the community, 185 00:13:54.299 --> 00:13:56.690 particularly in Improv, and I've been like, you know what, but 186 00:13:58.009 --> 00:14:01.169 I really like that idea and if you need help executing it, I'm more 187 00:14:01.210 --> 00:14:03.929 than willing to talk to you about it. and rather than being like, 188 00:14:03.210 --> 00:14:07.210 you know, it is hard to get a show up, because the reality 189 00:14:07.250 --> 00:14:11.279 is it is hard to get a show up. But why? Why lead 190 00:14:11.399 --> 00:14:15.639 with that? Why be discouraging rather than being like, here's the reality of 191 00:14:15.679 --> 00:14:18.799 it, but someone's got to do it, so why not? You talking 192 00:14:18.879 --> 00:14:24.590 about just you as Denzel. What is something that people seem to misunderstand about 193 00:14:24.669 --> 00:14:31.950 you? Particularly this last week in like being a black male in America has 194 00:14:31.990 --> 00:14:39.580 been hard. Okay, very nice. You know, I had a moment 195 00:14:41.299 --> 00:14:46.179 when the stuff about the young man who was shot while jogging. One the 196 00:14:46.299 --> 00:14:50.899 SOLACES I've been having your quarantine have been I've taken two daily walks and I 197 00:14:50.059 --> 00:14:54.529 just had a moment where I'm like I what can I do now? And 198 00:14:56.049 --> 00:15:01.610 I was like shaken to my core about and like we can have conversations about 199 00:15:01.610 --> 00:15:05.049 the mask thing and how, like so many communities, like the Agia communities 200 00:15:05.049 --> 00:15:09.000 in the black communities, are like do I wear? Like I understand the 201 00:15:09.120 --> 00:15:13.200 health benefit of wearing this mask, but also I could be judged and or 202 00:15:13.399 --> 00:15:18.840 shot for wearing this mask, and who cares how healthy I am if I'm 203 00:15:18.919 --> 00:15:26.110 dead? I can't wear a Bandana across my face exactly. I just can't. 204 00:15:26.149 --> 00:15:30.350 And when I see people doing it, part of me is like, 205 00:15:30.389 --> 00:15:35.190 thank God your white. It has been very interesting for me to watch people 206 00:15:35.230 --> 00:15:37.860 who are not of color talk about all my rights are being taken away. 207 00:15:39.299 --> 00:15:43.379 Oh, I can't believe that we can't do this. And just with all 208 00:15:43.419 --> 00:15:48.299 the restrictions that have come from being in this lockdown, how infringing it feels 209 00:15:48.340 --> 00:15:52.610 to them, and I think that is how I live my life, that 210 00:15:52.850 --> 00:15:56.409 is how I wake up every day, and I have to make choices that 211 00:15:56.570 --> 00:16:00.250 have nothing to do with what I may want to do or may what I 212 00:16:00.289 --> 00:16:03.850 feel I should be able to do, and I have to make choices for 213 00:16:03.009 --> 00:16:07.200 my day to day life, like whether or not I'm going to walk or 214 00:16:07.240 --> 00:16:10.559 what I'm going to wear if I go out for a walk, based on, 215 00:16:11.279 --> 00:16:15.360 ultimately, the fear that I could die for making a simple wrong choice 216 00:16:15.399 --> 00:16:19.710 that day. And they have the comfort of knowing that this time is temporary. 217 00:16:21.149 --> 00:16:22.750 They have the comfort of knowing that at some point, you know, 218 00:16:23.070 --> 00:16:26.750 lockdown will end and things will go back to normal. This is normal for 219 00:16:26.789 --> 00:16:30.789 us and I almost thought, like when I heard about what happened to that 220 00:16:30.830 --> 00:16:36.059 poor man, that people would be more understanding right now, and it just 221 00:16:36.179 --> 00:16:38.299 shocks me that at the same time, nothing's changed. Yeah, and you 222 00:16:38.379 --> 00:16:41.460 know what, like, while it is shocking, there's a part of us 223 00:16:41.500 --> 00:16:48.049 that's like so not surprised exactly. Things like the sadder thing, where I 224 00:16:48.129 --> 00:16:52.610 would almost be more shocked if this did really resonate in change thing. You 225 00:16:52.690 --> 00:16:59.049 know, I'm what twenty seven and I'm already like sort of jaded about that 226 00:16:59.210 --> 00:17:04.319 sort of progress happening quickly. This is a really special conversation because we are 227 00:17:04.480 --> 00:17:10.559 two black queer men. So for other Black Queer community people that may be 228 00:17:10.720 --> 00:17:15.589 listening, what would your advice be for getting through the challenges that we just 229 00:17:15.670 --> 00:17:21.630 talked about? I'll answer when you're done. Yeah, I would say communication. 230 00:17:21.829 --> 00:17:26.430 Communications been one of those things that I have found one so much success 231 00:17:26.630 --> 00:17:32.220 in as far as like getting career in everything, but also just within yourself 232 00:17:32.380 --> 00:17:37.660 and making sure that you're having those conversations with yourself. And in my adult 233 00:17:37.700 --> 00:17:41.500 life more and more and I coming to understand that there have been so many 234 00:17:41.619 --> 00:17:45.130 things that I have just sort of kept in me because I need to present 235 00:17:45.250 --> 00:17:52.849 in a certain way, and just being able to talk to anyone about it, 236 00:17:52.769 --> 00:17:57.210 a friend, a therapist, whoever has the emotional energy, a hotline. 237 00:17:59.000 --> 00:18:03.319 Just that pressure to be silent is what is harming us and is hurting 238 00:18:03.480 --> 00:18:10.920 us so deeply and I feel for every black queer person because I know those 239 00:18:11.039 --> 00:18:15.990 pressures and I know that sometimes you can't because you don't have the energy it's 240 00:18:17.069 --> 00:18:21.349 not a safe space, all those different things, but if you if you 241 00:18:21.829 --> 00:18:25.950 can and you can work towards it, it can save your life. For 242 00:18:26.150 --> 00:18:30.059 me, I think that it would be to have hope. I feel like 243 00:18:30.259 --> 00:18:33.420 every time our community is not down, it is really, really, really 244 00:18:33.500 --> 00:18:38.420 disheartening. But in my thirty one years of life I've also seen a lot 245 00:18:38.539 --> 00:18:45.529 of things change, so I always try to at least have a pinky wrapped 246 00:18:45.529 --> 00:18:49.529 around the hope that it will be different in the future. Even my experience 247 00:18:49.569 --> 00:18:53.450 as drag queen. When I first started drag it was not the thing to 248 00:18:53.490 --> 00:18:57.240 do. I was still getting beat up for going out to, you know, 249 00:18:57.359 --> 00:19:03.839 my local bar dressed as woman. But now drag is really penetrating mainstream 250 00:19:03.880 --> 00:19:07.960 culture. So something that I never thought would change did, and I hope 251 00:19:08.000 --> 00:19:14.190 and pray all the time that this particular issue with the black community and the 252 00:19:14.269 --> 00:19:18.829 Black Queer community will also change one day. Yeah, and it just reminds 253 00:19:18.950 --> 00:19:23.109 me that, like we are entitled to Joy. I think so much of 254 00:19:23.230 --> 00:19:29.500 our narrative is some laced in struggle and working hard and, you know, 255 00:19:29.619 --> 00:19:36.099 defying the odds. But even to see a celebrity like little not acts tweet 256 00:19:36.539 --> 00:19:41.450 and you can tell that, you know he's just being himself and he's smiling 257 00:19:41.609 --> 00:19:47.130 and having good time and just being a person like we are entitled to that 258 00:19:47.250 --> 00:19:52.650 as well, or even just be feel free to like to the gas station, 259 00:19:52.809 --> 00:19:55.079 to the grocery store, day to day things that you have to do 260 00:19:55.240 --> 00:20:00.920 that you feel sometimes feel this ominous threat about, and nobody can ever really 261 00:20:00.960 --> 00:20:04.279 live that way. That's why, in addition to the fact that we both 262 00:20:04.279 --> 00:20:10.150 work hard and we're very talented, people will not know the mental struggle and 263 00:20:10.390 --> 00:20:14.190 the mental stamina you have to even work through those pressures. Then you have 264 00:20:14.309 --> 00:20:17.509 to be talented, then you have to go for what you want for so 265 00:20:18.150 --> 00:20:21.460 it's the fact that you and I are making it. I think it's a 266 00:20:21.500 --> 00:20:25.299 beautiful, beautiful thing that we get to sit here and say that and not 267 00:20:25.500 --> 00:20:27.940 many other people do. But I hope the one thing that this podcast does 268 00:20:27.980 --> 00:20:33.460 is give them the inspiration and the hope to keep going, because it can 269 00:20:33.579 --> 00:20:37.569 happen. You just have to work for it and really really push through all 270 00:20:37.650 --> 00:20:41.849 those external factors. Well, thank you so much. In the overcoming on 271 00:20:41.970 --> 00:20:45.690 snack size, it has been an honor to do this episode with you. 272 00:20:45.210 --> 00:20:48.930 I know that people have a lot to take away. I also have a 273 00:20:48.970 --> 00:20:51.359 lot to take away by cell from it. So thank you so much for 274 00:20:51.480 --> 00:20:55.720 sharing. This was so wonderful and truly it feels just as special to me 275 00:20:55.799 --> 00:21:00.200 as it does to so, if people want to follow you, a normal 276 00:21:00.359 --> 00:21:03.039 about you, how do they do that? Yeah, so I'm on facebook 277 00:21:03.039 --> 00:21:10.069 just as my regular name, and on social media such as twitter, instagram 278 00:21:10.630 --> 00:21:15.789 and Ticktock, I'm at the word from underscore Washington. All right. Well, 279 00:21:15.869 --> 00:21:18.460 thank you so much and snax. We will talk to you later. 280 00:21:18.900 --> 00:21:23.539 By snacks. Okay, snack. I hope you enjoyed this episode of snack 281 00:21:23.660 --> 00:21:27.619 size. I also want to let you know that this podcast is now on 282 00:21:27.819 --> 00:21:33.690 iheartradio. Download the iheartradio APP and follow snack size the podcast so you don't 283 00:21:33.690 --> 00:21:38.529 miss out on any of my content exclusive to iheartradio. Also check out my 284 00:21:38.609 --> 00:21:45.809 new website, www dot snack size podcastcom, where you can listen to all 285 00:21:45.849 --> 00:21:49.440 your favorite episodes and more. Until next time, go be fabulous.