If you missed the article and audio exposé of #BitchesGetShitDone (BGSD), Iqaluit's first open mic for women, featured on CBC's Now or Never on January 27th 2018, then you can relive it here!
#BGSD is our creative, hilarious, arctic-centric response to a) the growing #MeToo movement b) feeling ignored/misunderstood in the arctic by the average southern Canadian, and c) women, especially indigenous, Inuit, and queer women,'s lack of presence in mainstream comedy and arts cultures. We think that by starting this female-only comedy troop, just sitting around a microphone, talking and laughing about life over our favourite snacks, we can help change the macho culture...and put Nunavut on the comedy map!
Most of the interview was edited down to fit the time constraints of the program, but also because some of the content of my answers didn't fit CBC's target audience, apparently. I am used to this by now- I seem really sweet and bubbly, so people do not expect me to tell jokes and stories about the nitty-gritty of lesbian culture, female sexuality, and of course butt plugs, which of course, aren't often discussed out loud, let alone on national radio. That is one of the reasons I started doing standup: to have a place to share my experiences as an open, out queer woman, navigating a very heteronormative, white, and uptight society.
Some of my favourite lesbian jokes are: that unlike men who can hide their penis sizes in their pants, dykes are always scoping out each other's fingers when holding drinks at the bar; how there are so few lesbians on Tinder in Iqaluit and all of them are my ex or my ex's ex and my ex's ex's friend, that because I'm gay people assume I'm into really kinky sex and ask me all sorts of questions that have nothing to do with lesbianism, and how I thought Snapchat was all about dick pics so I never bothered with it...until I realized it was a great way for lesbians to share strap-on and dildo pics! Etc, etc.
The last event I helped produce was Ladies Lube Wrestling which, I know what you are thinking, had nothing to do with porn, female exploitation, or even, butt plugs. But thank you for your concern. Just promoting and sharing the event on social media was a really interested and insightful experiment in how society reacts when women make decisions that go against the current, or are perceived as wrong. Within minutes of posting our event on Iqaluit Public Service Announcements and Iqaluit Rant and Rave Facebook Pages (if you want an entertaining experience while you're scrolling through FB while stuck in traffic or in bed, pleeeeease join those groups!), we had myriad reactions to our event. The gist of the negative comments were that we were exploiting women, that we were taking advantage of women, and how dare we do such a distasteful fundraiser for the high school, for shame. Yes, the proceeds of Ladies Lube Wrestling went to the Positive Space Club at the high school, which produces an annual youth Pride Week (so awesome, right???).
What people didn't anticipate was that, and I fiercely explained this on CBC Nunavut a few days before the event, Ladies Lube Wrestling was a female-produced comedy extravaganza, featuring Iqaluit's finest and CONSENTING female athletes/performers/anyone-who-wanted-to-be-lubed-up, in a CONSENSUAL and hilarious show of sports-woman-ship, facilitated by a drag queen, that by the end of the night everyone would know how to properly put on a condom, do a self-breast exam, and learn all the words to "Do You Wanna Try a Strap-On?" the lesbian, non-sister-sung version of Disney's "Do You Wanna Build a Snow Man?". Of course this event was so much fun, the audience as well as the lubed-up ladies had a blast, and we proved that even lube can be safe and empowering with the right narration, the right attitude, and with the right women in charge. Although Iqaluit residents seemed very concerned that we women would make the wrong wardrobe choices and pick slutty costumes, I think we all felt comfortable in the outfits WE PICKED OURSELVES. I myself was very happy with my lederhosen and even kept by frilly socks on during my matches, but I can't speak for the unicorn, the Scallop Queen, or the evil Power Puff Girl, only that were tough! And we raised a lot of $$$ for the kids.
See, now imagine what comedy would be like with more women?!?!?! #BGSD
Yes, I am super glad and excited that women forming a comedy troop in the arctic territory, Nunavut, is national news (and another article even made Australian media too!). However, what I will be even more glad about is women everywhere get together around a mic with their girlfriends and their favourite snacks, and are telling stories and laughing because seriously, that is first step to becoming a comedian, and the biggest step to keep the momentum of the #BGSD movement going. Let’s be honest though…comedy in Nunavut has been around for 15,000 or more years.
Maybe one day it will be okay to talk about strap-ons at 2pm on Saturday afternoon on national radio!