Wednesday, March 14, 2007


This happened a month ago, but it took me that long to think up a good joke for it.

Is there anyone who hasn't heard of Eve Ensler's one-woman play, The Vagina Monologues? More to the point, is there anyone who hasn't heard the word “vagina”?

Last February a production of The Vagina Monologues was being staged at the Atlantic Theater in Atlantic Beach, Florida. In a shocking move, the theater actually put the name of the play on their marquee in a brazen attempt to attract the ticket-buying public.

But they failed to take into consideration that some people do not choose to acknowledge the existence of certain body parts. The theater received a phone call. Someone had taken offense.

The caller was a woman who said she was upset that her niece (three or four years old, depending on various online accounts) had seen the word and asked what it meant. And instead of taking the straightforward road and giving her a simple definition, instead of taking the safe road and clearing it with the girl’s parents first, instead of taking the comical road and saying “Well, sweetie, a monologue is a speech delivered by a single actor alone on stage,” this woman—apparently related to the Iowa dillrod* who got his panties in a knot about the “F NADER” license plate—decided it would be best to raise a ruckus.

As a result—and by the way, I’m getting very near the joke I promised in the first paragraph—the theater changed the marquee to read “The Hoohah Monologues.”

To their credit, they changed it back to the proper name of the play not long after. But it occurred to me just now that if I bought a ticket for The Hoohah Monologues, I’d have every right to expect to see a stage adaptation of the best of Mad magazine, starring Melvin Fonebone and Roger Kaputnik.

Thank you! Good night, everyone!

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*If you’re unfamiliar with the Iowa dillrod story, you can find it in the Runes archive, August 2006: Brought To You By the Letter F.

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