Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry XoXo-mas & the Happiest of New Year!

To my friends, foes, lovers, & haters alike -

I send you huge holiday hugs.
May your cup always be half full - if not overflowing, your heart warmed with whiskey - or whatever your preferred poison, and your hands held by the ones you love - unless your palms get sweaty, take a break.

I do not make resolutions other than promising to be the best self I possibly have to offer the world; to continue on the path that I'm so enjoying the struggles and triumphs of.
Explore new adventures, taste new dishes, and drink new drinks. Make new friends, call your old ones, and let some go.

I'm off to enjoy/attempt all of the above & I hope you are too!

With an abundance of peace & love...Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you and yours.

Ciao for now,

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

My Research is Sexier Than Yours!

Phew! I am exhausted.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen this much boobage -that wasn‘t my own- in my life! Last night I finished my end of 2010 Burlesque Research Binge! (Although I’m now thinking I might see a couple more shows post-xmas, pre-new year!)

My first Burlesque-esque (ha!) activity was Bikini Boot camp (BBB) on Wednesday night. It was SO much fun. I wanted to dress up but I was running late in the morning to work so I just grabbed leggings and some heels. Yes, heels for an exercise class. Usually the first half hour is an aerobic workout and the second half we learn a cute little routine. The overall goal while doing the dance is to love yourself and your body “as it is right now”. I loved hearing that. It makes the fitness part truly feel like it’s about health and not merely a get-thin goal. So I ended up wearing my heels most of the class. It was actually great and made my workout a lot harder sometimes. For my sassiness, I won some OPI Nail Polishes that were released to promote the Burlesque movie. Hooray for Cher & Xtina! Booo for a movie whose name is misleading!
Come Friday, I started my burlyQ weekend. I had emailed Lefty Lucy (as advised by Jo Boobs) about performing in her monthly show Drive-Thru Burlesque. Produced by Lefty and Sizzle Dizzle, they always love letting new graduates from NYSB perform. I also added that’d I’d be at the show on Friday to check it out. The next day the girls wrote and asked if I’d like to work the door … um, duh I would!

So I wore my newest corset, under my newest dress and headed out the door. It’s held at the Parkside Lounge, which I had never been too but heard it was awesome. It is in fact, this great little rock bar that has this secretly cool back room with a stage and tables. SO CUTE! I loved it the second I walked in. The show is great and works as a 3-parter. For $10, you really get 3 shows, over a span of 5hrs!

Saturday morning I reluctantly headed to BBB again, I met Charlie Gun & MK there. I have to admit how proud of myself I was for actually going. I did have to slap myself in the face and say “Tina, get up lazy & go!” Not to say I’m some totally transformed being, but an older version of Tina would have pressed snooze and pretended to over sleep. That night I took myself to a free show at the Toro Lounge. Produced by my fave gal Calamity Chang (I‘m turning her into my friend because I just love talking to her!), Tails & Feathers made it’s second stop at this venue. The place was really beautiful and glamorous like most sexy NYC hotel lounges. My $13 rum & coke, helped me keep my 1-drink-only promise to myself because I was meeting friends afterward. My fellow graduate Sincerely Yours met me there! It was the first time I saw Clams Casino perform and the first time I heard Shelly the Singing Siren. There was a great diverse crowd that, in my opinion, weren’t too schooled in burlesque which is always exciting to see how people react. No one screamed anything in appropriate (I don’t think) and I’m confident to say people tipped fairly well!

Ugh, Sunday, I was so ready to curl up in bed and say “forget it!” I got in the shower, put lipstick on my lips, and headed out the door for a $10 show I will never forget. The Sunday Show, after 2 years, was on it’s last night. With an “American Dream” theme, we celebrated the holidays with an amazing span of performers. I finally saw some fire eating by the sexily stripped down Coco La Pearl, a glowing hula hoop act by Justina Flash who also stripped while hula-ing? Hooping? I dunno. Also I got to see Legs Malone and her 34 ½” inseam do a classic number. My girl Calamity was there again and I finally got to enjoy her, not-to-be-missed Asian Hooker act. Google it. I can’t even talk about how much fun it is. Of all the acts my favorite new-to-me performer was Grace Gotham. I fell in love with her face and the sweet & simple tassel twirling act she did!! Before I wrap this up, I have to express my deep, newfound envy of & love for Kiki Valentine. She was the MC and producer of the show. She was so on point and adorable and hilarious and spontaneous and just the kind of stage presence/host you want have & be. In love.

Oh! Also I won an It’s a Little Hat by Little Stormy - YES! My second custom hat by her! It carried the show’s theme with a picket fence and red Volvo…ha!

I wrapped my exhausting but wonderful weekend up with Monday night’s free show, Original Cyn Burlesque in my very own neighborhood, thank god, at Lucky 13 Saloon!

I’ve been dying to check this bar out and when I heard there was a show held there I was pumped to see both! I met one of the producers, Joe the Shark, at Drive-Thru on Friday and told him I definitely wouldn’t miss it. The less-than-a-stage and more like a platform area was perfect. I loved the dingy, dark, metal bar that also had a pole on the corner of the counter top. I drank a coca-cola, sans rum, for $2 and put $5 in the tip bucket. Got to see a new friend, Franny Fluffer, perform along with Stormy Leather (best name ever!). It was Rosie 151’s birthday and send off performance. I have to say, her body was amazing. She was probably 1 or 2 sizes smaller than me but her stomach was flat and cute and her thighs looked smooth as silk. How does she do it?! I really couldn’t keep my eyes off of her none-existent belly, Yowza! My favorite act was co-producer, Mary Cyn’s, Grinch who stole xmas & my clothes performance! On the bar top she struggled with the “Grinch” (a guy dressed up haha) as he took her presents, teddy bear & eventually her gift box bow pasties. I think the bar let out an “OOHHHH” as the bows were ripped off her nipples. Ouch. Ha!

Omg. This is so long. I hope it was as fun to read as it was for me to recount my weekend. It was worth the energy, time, and money. Going to shows is a great way to obviously show face and introduce yourself to performers and producers and even more importantly, to see the different venues you could possibly perform in. I saw 4 different ones and all 4 I had never been to. Wow, I actually just realized that, so cool! I love calling it research because in fact it is. The more performers you see the more you can start to form your identity in the community. Knowing what’s available or seeing which acts inspire you, or even classic moves that you can make your own. I thoroughly enjoyed every show because they were all very different and new to me. If you’re interested in seeing a show, I try to promote them as much as I can on my FB page even if I myself cannot make them.

I hope in the new year I’ll be able to write about performing in some of these particular shows & venues. We’ll see what happens!

I hope you all have a gorgeous & fulfilling holiday season and I wish you happiness, health, & success.

Ciao for now,

PS: How much do you love these names? I love telling my roommates stories because it sounds like I'm high and living in a cartoon, but on the contrary good friends, THIS IS REAL LIFE AND I LOVE IT!

Monday, December 13, 2010

It's Showtime!

Be there an hour early, bring a robe, don't forget your music. THAT'S IT! Those were our last instructions. *bites nails*'s the video.
Each time I press play and hear my friends chanting I've started to cry ha! I am incredibly overwhelmed by the support  including that from those who couldn't make the show. 

Friday was AMAZING. My fellow classmates left me speechless:
Charlie Gun - like her here
Evelyn Vinyl - like her here
Raven Twin - like her here
Sincerely Yours - find her here
Iris Explosion - find her here
Our Gorgeous Stage Kitten & fellow performer: Franny Fluffer - find her here
Our Co-host & fellow performer: Jonny Porkpie - like him here
And last but most d efinitely not least, our head mistress, hostess with the mostess: Jo Boobs Weldon - LOVE her & her book here

All day I was fine until I started having a stomach ache due to nerves.  As I've said many a time, I haven't performed anything in years. Especially not solo. (That was probably a piano recital when I was about 11years old.)  We did a quick run through on stage to make sure our music was working and to get a feel for the space. I forgot my routine and could barely hear the music. OMG! I was so  freaked out that my concentration was off, this only put me in more of a panic.

I ended up being the 2nd to last performer. I think it was a good thing because by the time I had to go on my hands stopped shaking and my heart calmed down. My friends were there in abundance, which at first worked against my angst, but eventually kept my spirits high as hell! I felt good on stage and didn't want it to end. My left boob refused to twirl backstage, I'm pretty sure it had a mini-stroke, by the looks of the video though it seemed to wake up just in time for twirling! That made me feel SO good! I obviously take pride in my twirls haha!
After each dancer was finished Jo Boobs had us come back on stage and chatted with us a bit. I thought it was hilarious walking out in hot pants and tassels "out of character". A friend of mine, JT (not Justin Timberlake ha!), asked on my facebook page, "...was it more nerve wracking to dance or to stand there at the end and chat in not much clothing?" I immediately answered to chat and she had assumed it was because of my lack of clothing in comparison to the over dressed audience. It definitely wasn't the nudity. 
I've become more (and am still becoming) comfortable with that part. Frankly, every morning I've been making it a point to enjoy my nude body in morning lite streaming through my sheer curtains (yum! what a scene I've set up for you..) I look in the mirror and think "god, I look really good to hold." (does that even make sense? hahah) I shit you not. It's that whole positive affirmation thing. It helps - try it out asap! Take at least a few minutes daily to enjoy you & only you.
So, as I said above, it was walking back onto stage as regular ol' Tina wearing a funny costume. I immediately answered the question with a joke because I was too nervous to be serious. Nervous in the sense that my heart was pounding post-performance, and I was feeling shaky from the adrenaline. I've never really been scared of public speaking but I'm pretty sure I lost some of that courage along the way too.

Jo's first question for each performer was, "what inspired you to be here?" In a past blog I've said that one of my biggest fears is being taken seriously and that following and fulfilling dreams is terrifying. I'm not sure why. It's partially a fear of rejection & partially a fear of what happens after you reach a goal.(silly, right?)
I wanted to tell the audience that for most of my life I've been dying to be on a stage but just couldn't keep my chin up in the pursuit. If in the middle of my high school career, you would have asked me where I saw myself at 27, I would have quickly replied I'd be living in NYC and working on Broadway...I'm half way there? ha!

Well now it's over.
In addition to feeling relieved, I'm excited to get working on a new act. It was gonna be my first but I was so overwhelmed I couldn't go that far. I was too scared, but now I'm ready!! Full speed ahead...I'll have to work on getting booked. Going to shows, looking for castings, anyway really to get my face & name out there.

It's only been 2 days since my only show and I feel like I've been doing it for years..not because I have a big head about it but because it just felt SO good to be back out there. I hope to parlay this energy & rising confidence into other auditions. I know I'd love to do hosting gigs. I think I'd be great at it after a couple of goes and it'd be a perfect way to give pseudo stand-up comedy a try too!  *Fingers crossed*

Before I go, I want to be completely are being posted from the show, I too am sharing them, but I will not pretend that it's not tough looking at them and not comparing myself to the other girls around me. My boobs are triple in size and therefore tripled in weight. My one thigh is the size of Jo Boobs' entire body. Blah blah blah. I'm doing my best to look beyond the photo and reminding myself what a wonderful, much needed experience the classes & show night were. Phew! I'm glad I got that off my chest.
My favorite part(s): Being on stage FINALLY! And in close 2nd is being backstage with ma girls!
The hardest part(s): Feeling 100% ready. Confidence is KEY to a good performance, I know for sure I have it in here somewhere I just need to find it!!
What I learned: To fucking werk. it. out. and enjoy every second!

I have another Burlesque Bikini Boot camp class on Wednesday and am looking forward to sweating! Stay warm readers <3

Ciao for now,

PS: Here I am as a snowlady at the Holiday Bazaar sporting my It's a Little Hat by Little Stormy! I had to wear pasties (homemade out of coffee filters btw, shhh) so I didnt offend anyone ;)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Busy Life for a Poor Girl

So I’ve had a really great past week & have a really exciting one ahead! My title says it all. I am confident to say I'm in the "paying dues" phase of my career. I know more things are to come & *fingers crossed* paychecks will accompany them.

 On Monday, I put the finishing touches on my costume for the upcoming showcase. I added some sparkle where it was lacking and finished making my bra into what I need it to be.  Aside from being annoying at times, building your own costume (even if only manipulating store bought pieces) adds a hint of ego to the performer. Well for me anyway. Even though, pieces stay on for mere seconds during your routine, it gives you much pride in the end knowing you designed it.  If you’re like me you enjoy feeling as if you’re the only one with certain shoes, or dresses, or anything. You know it’s not true but tricking yourself feels great! So when you make your own costume, you cannot help but feel like there is no other one out there like it and frankly there might not be!
I will not lie though either, when I can afford it, I will buy my costumes and have things made to order. That is the princess fantasy!

On Tuesday I got to shoot with my gorgeous & talented friend Doron Gild. (check out his phenom work here) He made it clear that it would be a combination of the Tina Tassels physical with the Doron Gild photographic. That said, I wasn’t allowed to smile much and I found it extremely hard! I whined about it but he was being serious and professional and not giving in, booooo! (ha! Jk jk.)  By some miracle, and by that I mean knowing the right people, we were allowed to shoot in the Beauty Bar. Which I was ECSTATIC about. I love that place. If you’ve never been there, check it out. Many a tourist & locals alike, spend their nights there. It has a wall lined in old hair dryers, another with old barber chairs, and a back room that I prefer to call the disco lounge. I am honored that I have had, this early in my career, the opportunity to shoot there. Also a shot out to my OTHER beautiful & talented friend, Krista Pruent, for her awesome makeup skills & hair support! (see more of her work here)

This is my favorite of the day. 
(You can check out my other pics here, and there are more to come!)

Thursday, through Twitter, I saw that The Wendy Williams Show was having a casting call for 2 friends or siblings to be her red carpet correspondents for Jingle Ball at Madison Square Garden. I am never one to pass up a possible chance of being on TV or a talk show or any contest really. ( I almost won 3 cars a couple of years back!) After debate over my PIC (partner in crime for you nOObs), I approached my friend LM (whose yummy brunching blog you can read here) thinking no one else would be interested.  A lot of people think I’m silly or reaching too far when I enter such things, but she had already beat me to the punch with her bff! I was so psyched to hear that friends were trying out too!  After this I told (not even asked) my great friend, who is well on his way to being a huge singer/song writer, AD (whose beautiful sounds you can listen to here and buy on itunes). He laughed a bit and then gave in. I submitted a picture & a blurb about who we are, how/why we’re friends, etc…and A PRODUCER CALLED ME TODAY!  We have a meeting on Monday, we’ll see what happens. I think the red carpet is dying for two people like us!

Tomorrow is my first class of Burlesque Bikini Boot camp (read about it here). We will be mixing aerobics/yoga/pilates AND burlesque style dance moves! Um….perfect!  Two friends will be joining me: shy girl (from my SOB class) & MK, the brave girl who came to our pasty making party and twirled for the first time!  I think we’re gonna have a blast while burning some calories, I cannot wait!
My good friend JT (whose paper work you can check out here), is hosting her annual holiday crafting party on Sunday. Since I’ve got too much to worry about I’ve decided to work on my event costume instead. I am being a snow-wo-man so it counts!  For the Holiday Spirits Event I felt the itch to order a custom hat and on Monday I will be able to pick mine up by Little Stormy. She has become a sweet interweb friend and I cannot wait to put it on!! (see her hats here)

I am happy to say my anxiety has subsided and I’m feeling great. A little nervous, but nothing abnormal nor that I can’t handle. I know Friday will be here before we know it so I’ve really gotta practice A LOT this week. Holy shit. Aw and my mom wants to come “if you’ll have me there” she said. I told her I’d understand her absence because on Fridays she works a bizzillion hours and the last thing she needs to do is drive in alone from South Jersey for a 9pm strip show. In all honesty it’d be great to have her there but I don’t want to pressure her too much so I played it cool. Nice daughter. Ha!

I made my first ever macaroons today, they are SO good. Tomorrow's batch MIGHT have some chocolate drizzled on top. (weird the TV just said "drizzle" as I typed it, that's a sign for sure!)
I wish you all a great weekend with warmth & holiday spirit in the air - baby it's cold outside!

Ciao for now,

Dec 10 9p-11p $15 - more info here
Student Showcase: where us newbies strut our stuff for the first time!
Coney Island, Sideshows by the Seashore
Dec 11 4pVIP/5pmREG-10p $25VIP/$20REG - more info here
Although I won't be performing, I'll be a "Special Guest" - hooray! Come enjoy some new cocktails & good company.
Brooklyn, The Green Building

Monday, November 29, 2010

"Fuck, I wish I was that Chair"

...that's what goes through a guy's mind watching a hot girl play with a metal folding chair...
Best title ever!

Today we had the foul-mouthed hottie, Gal Friday. I have to confess, she is my favorite performer as of now. There’s just something about her, I don’t blink when she‘s on stage. I see a lot of myself in her so in respect, she is a huge influence on me. Needless to say, I barely talked in class and hung on every word she said. 
So class was ½ Chair Dancing Basics and ½ The Art of Peeling.  We began with glove peeling. I LOVE wearing long satin gloves. I said it before, but every girl should own a pair!  We were taught different ways to remove them and a few were already my favorite but it was fun to practice them some more and learn little tricks to make them smoother & sexier.  I loved a couple specific teases that brought the attention back to my boobs. Not only do I love them (haha!) but because it’s important to work with what you have and focus less on what you’re lacking. 

Moving onto chair work we first did some peeling off of thigh-high stockings …cute!  Gal gave us a little history on real vintage stockings vs. modern/cheap ones.  I don’t know about anyone else but I love stockings in general. I have a hard time with thigh-highs though because I have huge thighs and they don’t stay on as well. Booo! I mean my thighs are great but really soft so therefore need their particular size to look cute. Today’s stockings were small on me but we’re fine for learning.  I like watching other performers peel their’s off but I’ve personally never cared for really getting into it. I always wanted to learn it but at this point have no desire to shed them on stage!

OK, Next was chair dancing. Again we learned an entire routine.  This was a bit challenging for me and I felt much less sexier than I thought I would. Not the entire dance but the sitting on the chair parts I felt like my ass and thighs were so spread out, covering the entire chair (because naturally that’s what happens when you sit down sans jeans/tight bottoms, duh!).  Looking at myself in the mirror, I didn’t care for what I saw. There was a specific move where you kick your legs up so you’re using your core for extra support and somewhat bracing yourself with your hands. This was hard for 2 reasons: 1) I have no core muscles and 2) Keeping your body crunched up like that is much more complicated when you’ve got a lot of weight in your thighs and lower “abs”.  I know I’m totally PMS-ing right now (sorry for TMI) but I got really upset and felt like a hippo sitting on a child size stool.  Blah! BUT THEN we got up and started flirting more with the audience using our ever so slow walk (in heels of course), making eye contact with the faux audience, exaggerated bumps-n-grinds, and eventually caressing the chair.  That is when I got carried away (in a good way) because I felt like the audience was on the edge of their seats wondering where this was gonna go.  I personally felt this routine to be a reminder as to how important it is to take your time and enjoy each move, don’t feel like you have to be doing something big and wild every second of your routine.  I would love to chair dance eventually I just need to work on my body more!
It was our 4th & final class of the Essential Series - boooo! I feel that AT LEAST one more would have been perfect either to use the time as a practice run for our showcase or just one chance to meet and work with a new teacher/performer/personality.  Although a few of us dreamt it’d last as long as a normal semester. Ugh…I felt like everyone was just getting really pumped and now it’s all gone. Forever. Just kidding, I don’t mean to be dramatic but it’s less than 2 weeks away from our show and I feel like I’ll be outta practice. Waiting 6 days for the next class was torture enough!!

My favorite part(s):  Gloves & Boobs.
The hardest part(s):  Keeping my legs up while maintaining sexiness.
What I learned:  I need to practice my showcase routine and not feel so in need of using props and making big moves every second. Slow it down Tina Tassels!

I’ll be working on my costume & getting my routine down for the next 10days. It’s crunch time ladies & gents!

Ciao for now,

Dec 10 9p-11p $15 - more info here
Student Showcase: where us newbies strut our stuff for the first time!
Coney Island, Sideshows by the Seashore
Dec 11 4pVIP/5pmREG-10p $25VIP/$20REG - more info here
Although I won't be performing, I'll be a "Special Guest" - hooray! Come enjoy some new cocktails & good company.
Brooklyn, The Green Building

Monday, November 22, 2010

Elephant in a Tutu

BEFORE CLASS: I’m feeling nervous. My fear set in late last week but I thought it’d disappear so I didn’t mention it in the last blog. Being without a doubt, the biggest girl in my class I feel I have to work extra hard to accomplish what I want in my performance; to be laughed with and not laughed at, to be cheered for and not mocked.  I don’t need words of encouragement here (or maybe I do, who knows?) I just need to verbalize or in this case writerize (ha!) what‘s going through my head and heart.  And I know that I’ve already gone on and on about how accepting and welcoming the Burlesque audience is, but I’m having “naked big girl in a room full of naked small girls” anxiety. I cannot stop chewing my nicely grown nails. Yuck! And all of this is where my title came from - it's what I've been feeling like lately.

AFTER CLASS:  There’s no turning back, not for Tina Tassels!
We had our 3rd class today: Fan Dance, Strutting, and Walking. The amazing, gorgeous, and hilarious Jezebel Express (whose blog you can read here) was our instructor. I am sad that I am yet to see her perform but I’ve been following her for some time now.  Seeing a girl with a bigger rack and ass than mine teaching us how to showgirl walk was nothing short of exactly what I needed. (I say this all with love Jez!) It wasn't because I was smaller it was because how beautiful and graceful she looked. She said we could stalk her with questions of any kind and I insisted that I probably would because I’m filling up with fear about my size. She had the kindest things to say (including that she’s read my blog, OMG!) and totally made the rest of my day.  Thanks girl! <3

Ok…Fan Dancing = hard. Until you are used to the weight of them, your arms and hands go numb. Until you get used to when to twist your wrists and where to face your hands, your fans will be uneven and you’ll probably hit yourself in the face - which I did.  The fans were so beautiful though and we learned an entire routine! There were only 2 pairs of large ostrich feather fans available so we were learning with smaller ones. After learning the dance, start-to-finish, 2 of us at a time danced for the class using the large ones. It was so great to finally get a feel for them (I‘m not sure about the others, but I definitely hadn‘t held a pair before). In my opinion the fans took up a lot of my attention so I wasn’t pointing toes or smiling as much (except when I was laughing at myself for messing up).  They did though, feel super soft and sensual on your skin. I should probably own a pair soon.

We also learned a few different types of walks. It was important to be shown what an impact a little knee bending and/or a pointed toe can do for the length of your legs. This was a good tip for me! We also strutted around in mock high heels (we aren’t allowed to wear shoes in this particular space).  It was cute kicking our heels up and I shared how I felt like the ballet dancing ostrich in Fantasia, so dainty and feminine! I loved the Left-Right-Bump walk. Having big hips comes in handy here and makes the walk look so much more womanly...hubba hubba!

December 10 is creepin up so fast. Today after class a few of us girls got together and made pasties and worked on our costumes. My good friend and NON-SOB student, MK,  joined us too and put pasties on for the first time (well, I think it was her first time!). The clock is ticking and we’re freaking out, in a good way, but still freaking out! Red wine, sequin trim, and topless girls make for a great Sunday night!

My favorite part(s): Walking with Jezebel.
The hardest part(s): Getting my hands to face the right ways with the fans in em! Booo!
What I learned: How important your face is! If you look bored, nervous, or confused (naturally vs. unintentionally) the audience is also gonna be bored, nervous, and confused. Smile, pout your lips, do something to prove that you're enjoying yourself because hopefully you are!

I just got back from LA and am exhausted. I cannot wait to put my head down. In the coming weeks I have intense costume planning/making to do, I have to get my props together, some routine choreography finalization, & just chill the fuck out and do this!

Ciao for now,

Dec 10 9p-11p $15 - more info here
Student Showcase: where us newbies strut our stuff for the first time!
Coney Island, Sideshows by the Seashore
Dec 11 4pVIP/5pmREG-10p $25VIP/$20REG - more info here
Although I won't be performing, I'll be a "Special Guest" - hooray! Come enjoy some new cocktails & good company.
Brooklyn, The Green Building

Monday, November 15, 2010

Brave Women Are So Inspiring!

Class 2: Bring an item of street clothing to strip off.
Street clothing is any piece of clothing that's not intended to be stage stripped. No secret snaps, easy zipper pulls, velcro etc..

I felt totally lame and uncreative when all I brought was a zip-up top (totally sexy off the shoulder fitted zip up but none-the-less a plain old zip up).  I should have known better!! Never underestimate the teachings of the SOB! All I needed was a zipper, sexy music, and good timing peppered with some tease!
SO MUCH FUN! Taught by Darlinda Just Darlinda (read up & 'like' her here), it was the first time we had to do a mini performance for the class. We stood up one-by-one and depending on the item, DJD would set up a little scenario/character/emotion and then shared little tips on how to work our specific piece of clothing.  I think the girl with skinny jeans was my favorite. It was comical and so damn cute to watch. You felt for the sweet little girl needing help with her jeans. Oh! I also liked the naughty librarian with a button up top and a simple, so good.

I loved this exercise because it taught us little tricks that are so simple but can keep an audience hanging on your every move. Ugh, I can't get over how amazing it was and how courageous my fellow classmates are!  It was incredibly moving to see even the shyest of girls thrusting their hips wearing huge smiles. I keep my fingers crossed they perform - even if only for someone special at home!
Before the stripping, we went over "isolations". DJD schooled us on how each part of our body is uber sexy with just a little extra attention. I've always sorta felt this way though. I think the body is so gorgeous and little parts like necks and lower backs are to die for...but even more so now.  A shoulder is NOT just a shoulder anymore...yum! I don't remember what is  in store for next week..but I pray it's chair dancing!
My favorite part(s): Actually getting up in front of everyone and getting some practice while eyes were watching.
The hardest part(s): I couldn't seem to get this side-to-side rib cage move down!
What I learned: Take your time working each little button, zipper or pulling off of your costume. The anticipation of skin showing is painfully hot!

 I said it last week and I'll keep saying it: next Sunday cannot come soon enough!

Ciao for now,

Announcements: Some exciting things to share!
Dec 10 9p-11p $15
Student Showcase: where us newbies strut our stuff for the first time!
Coney Island, Sideshows by the Seashore
Dec 11 4pVIP/5pmREG-10p $25VIP/$20REG
Although I won't be performing, I'll be a "Special Guest" - hooray! Come enjoy some new cocktails & good company.
Brooklyn, The Green Building

Thursday, November 11, 2010

If Reality TV Comes Knocking

Sometime in the early summer I was contacted by a photographer, David Kimelman (whose website you can see here), who had seen my profile on and was doing a project using other people he had contacted on there as well. He was interested in photographing those on the site and knowing more about their story...why they were interested in doing reality TV work. He said that my answer seemed to be the overall consensus:
I wanna be paid to be myself.
He recently emailed and asked if I could answer a few questions because he is looking to publish his images and/or share them in a gallery but wanted some text with his shots.

Frankly, I couldn't care less for the pictures he took but that's my problem not his. My hair was flat and so were my shoes. Whatevs!

Below are the questions. I was a bit impulsive in my replies so I've corrected grammatical errors and added words that I mistakenly forgot.

1.What reality television show or shows would you like to be cast on?
On certain nights, I'd think about going on a weight loss show. 2 birds - 1 stone. Lose weight and get my face on TV while sharing my dreams. And America's Next Top Model because I'd love to learn more about modeling/fashion but I'm pretty sure that I'm too short & wide simultaneously ha!

2.Why do you think you would be good on that show or shows?
Because I'm in need a boost for both of those things [weight loss & my face on TV]. Not necessarily losing weight but just looking better naked. And for some reason following my dreams is extremely terrifying. Pursuing anything in show business is scary. You put EVERYTHING on display: physically, mentally, & emotionally.

3.Would you like to have a reality television show made about your life? If yes, what would we see in that show?
Yes! Currently I'd love to have a camera following me while I pursue Burlesque and pinup modeling - 1) burlesque is reemerging in a huge way in NYC and I'm happy to be in the middle of it 2) pinup modeling isn't the standard -obviously - and I think people would love to watch/learn about retro pop culture. Every woman has a secret dream of being a pinup 3) I am plus sized. I think this would challenge a lot of the way people think. In some opinions, I probably shouldn't be parading around on stage half naked because I might show a couple belly rolls when I do a certain dance move. They can suck it!
4. How do you think your life would change if you were cast on a show?
I'd keep my fingers crossed that it'd get better! (I don't think it could get worse, I've got nothing to lose right now) Frankly I'd get a small paycheck to pay rent for a few months so that'd be nice and I'm sure I'd get to meet a lot more people in the pinup & burlesque communities than I already am. At the end of the day I just wanna make a career out of posing in REALLY cute/sexy/fun clothes or lack there of ;)

Ciao for now,

Monday, November 8, 2010

Hi, My name is Tina Tassels

Today I had my first class!! It felt nothing short of amazing! I haven‘t done anything like this in years and it was great to be in a performance group again.

Before I share anything else, I must get this out of my system:
Of course I was scared but after awhile I couldn't help but think "God, I look so great without a top on!"

Ok, so there were 8 of us which was perfect. I was scared that the class would be much bigger. Having it smaller definitely makes me feel like Jo Boobs was only teaching me. (Love her btw, I will say this over and over again). We have a gorgeous class filled with awesome girls ranging in experience and body type. Shy girl* was there because the final straw was when her boyfriend said “you’d never do something like that”. I’m so glad she‘s here.  There were some girls like me just dying to get back into some sort of dancing and performing and obviously this fire inside longing to um…strip, I guess?! The first girl I met, Bucharest*, was there even earlier than me and had smoked just as many cigarettes in her nervous anticipation.  She was a doll and I’m sure it will ease both our families when we say “I met a Romanian girl there!”
We learned an entire classic routine set to an oldie-but-goodie big band burlesque song. From caressing our boas, to sampling some cleavage play, peeling our gloves from the floor up, and finally “shakin our titties” - that’s how my brother would put it. We also flirted with our hips, learning a few different bump -n- grinds.
When it came to tassel twirling we learned 5+ ways. It was super fantastic that after an hour of class we were taking off our tops and bras and putting on pasties, some for the first time. How brave! I will not lie, I was terrified at first. I am the biggest girl in the class with I’m pretty sure the heaviest set of twins (I mean boobs btw for you prudes out there). After about 5mins of jitters I had to shake myself out of it because we were learning how to mind fuck the audience by just playing with our bra straps. Holy Cow! I loved a particular move involving my right hand, the left strap, and sliding it off while your entire body sorta melts down. (I don’t wanna give too much away so this is vague!)
Back to twirling, it was great to try different moves and figure out which was best suited to your body. Not everyone can twirl the same way, but everyone CAN find their perfect move!
My favorite part(s): I loved playing with the boas and my bra the most today.
The hardest part(s): Not looking down while twirling. Have faith in your boobies and soak in that audience!
What I learned: Standing still and making tiny moves is just as, if not more, powerful than trying something bigger and bolder. I also think it’s much harder for me and I am looking forward to exploring this calmer side more!

Today could not have been a better first class and next Sunday cannot come soon enough!

Ciao for now,

*I’ve obviously given nicknames to my fellow students and totally love it.
**And I've also shared these pictures with you from Google searches. Hooray for the interweb!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Welcome My Fine Feathered Friends!

I’ve been using that phrase for years and now it’s seemingly appropriate, Hooray!

I debated sharing my experiences for a long time and have finally come to a place where I think they’ll be much more interesting. You see dear friends, I’ve enrolled in the New York School of Burlesque!! OW OW! (virtual cat calling)  I will be taking the Essential Burlesque Dance Series. It is 4 Sundays,  2 hours each class, and I am ecstatic. I’ve been itching to take dance classes and equally refusing to spend the little money I make on them but I’ve reached my boiling point. I have faith it will be worth every penny and the beginning of a really exciting year…fingers crossed!

I am feeling refreshed at 27 and falling in love with myself all over again. Since moving to NYC over two years ago, I’m steadily regaining a confidence I’m pretty sure I lost in college. Being a girl is hard enough, being a plus size girl in a frat house makes it even harder. I’ve always loved my curves but grew up in a world that thought them diseased so I struggled with this dichotomy for years on end. I’m not here to complain about that though, I’m here to celebrate being a happy, confident, big hipped girl who just wants to dance!

You n00bs asking “what is burlesque?” I’ll explain it the way I did to my mother: Like a stripping showgirl.  It celebrates being funny and sexy at the same time. I mean hellooo I’m funny AND sexy! (note: she thinks I’m officially nuts.)

First Taste: On Wednesday, August 25, 2010, I dragged my friend LM (whose blog you can read here) to go see the SOB‘s  (School of Burlesque) Student Showcase. I had never been to a live burlesque show and could not take it anymore; I would have gone alone. Long story short, I was the reluctant audience volunteer at intermission. Jo “Boobs“ Weldon (headmistress at SOB, read her blog here) asked me onstage after my friends had been yelling my name. Oh god, I thought. After a few introductory questions I had my back to the audience and was unbuttoning my top. Before I knew it I was bra free and had tasseled pasties hanging from my boobs. At this point I was told to face the audience. “My poor mother,” I said. I learned a little bumpin and grindin then within seconds my hands were in the air, I was bouncing up and down, and the tassels were twirling. Holy cow!
I got a standing ovation (because Burlesque audiences rock!), my first pair of pasties (yum!), and I was hooked...

I’ll try and keep my entries short, sweet, and fun but I make no promises! I wanna have a video each week in addition to a write up but we’ll see how that goes. My first class is next Sunday, Nov 7, and I hope you check back to hear all about it!

Ciao for now,

PS: Happy Halloween! I celebrated last night and do not see myself leaving the house today. ouch.