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Permission granted by author for anyone to distribute this
writing free of charge (including translation into any
language)...under condition that no profit is made therefrom,
and that it remain intact and complete, including title and 
credit to the original author.

Ezekiel J. Krahlin

(A True Tale From The Castro. Eat your heart out, Armistead!)

© 2003 by Ezekiel J. Krahlin
(Jehovah's Queer Witness)

by Zeke Krahlin

The following two letters were posted to the mailing list of
my classmates for the Hyena Comedy Institute. This is an
organization that caters to sexual minorities, who want to
learn the fumbling art of stand-up comedy. The second letter
won't make complete sense, unless you know that on the 2nd
floor (below our classroom) is the Bikram Yoga Institute,
which uses heated rooms as part of its methodology. So we have
to sweat beads at our classes, even with the windows
heat rises up, to turn our floor into a furnace. The only
respite is when the evenings are cool...and then the room
temp. is down to a "comfortable" 85 degrees or so.

---first letter:

From: Ezekiel Krahlin 
To: Hyena Comedy Institute Classmates
Received: 10/25/03  1:20 PM
Subject: An Auspicious Day (Oct. 24)

Yesterday was remarkable, like living a wonderful dream...only
it was all true. Let me tell the story:

I strolled along Market Street on the way to my new hangout, a
gay biker bar South of Market, called "Hole in the Wall"
(which place I had parodied in my "I Love Gay Mecca" skit). I
was very happy, thinking about my first one-man show coming up
in two days (Saturday, today). The event will be a private
party, all gay: wine-tasting; so I know it'll be hilarious.
But last night even lit up my spirits more, thanks to a
message on my answering machine:

A remarkable woman (pro-Palestinian activist who is Jewish;
courageous bridge builder for the Arab world), invited me to
entertain at her going-away party. She is returning to
Palestine on her next mission of goodwill as a community
activist. Her name is Yvette, and I met her at the Arab
Cultural Festival two months ago. (I've become involved with
the gay-Arab issue, as a volunteer for Amnesty International's
new sexual minority project, "OUTfront".) So of course I said
I'd be HONORED to provide some levity and morale boost to this
excellent cause.

So I decided to celebrate by treating myself to a Chinese
dinner, before showing up at Hole in the Wall. The predictable
fortune cookie arrived at my table, when I was done. And I
thought: "This oughta be a really appropriate fortune, or I'll
eat my bandana!" So I cracked open the cookie, and sure
enough, the fortune was right-on. It is now taped on my
computer monitor, where I can see it as I type this essay:

     "Your talents will be recognized and rewarded."

I then decided to post my Hyena-comedy classmates these latest
good tidings, in an essay I'll call "An Auspicious Day".

So I finally got to Hole in the Wall, to enjoy some coffee and
shmooze. I checked out the gay rags in several stacks by the
front window...and was delighted to discover that the S.F. Bay
Times had published my letter, which I thought they never
would! You'll get a kick out of this, 'cause that letter is
actually my "I Love Gay Mecca" skit (minus the intro poem). It
is on page 14, the latest issue (Oct. 23), same title as my
skit. Chuckling to myself, I thought, "Wonder what the police
commissioner will think about this!" Said commissioner by the
way, is also the political editor of another gay paper, the
Bay Area Reporter. And for some weird reason, he had sent me
some nasty e-mails a few months ago; which I have since posted
in a parody on my website, called "Wayne & Jane: a Spoof in
Three Parts". (Note that Wayne and I have never met, nor
exchanged any communique in any way, shape or form. However, I
am well known for my many fun letters to the editor, as well
as my community activism since 1973. Yet I still don't know
what the dude looks like; for all I know, he's been among the
audience in my open mic venues.)

I envisioned the commissioner (Wayne Friday, whom I called
"Wayne Saturday" in my parody), attempting to sue me or do
some other outrageous public snit in retaliation for having
him give me a quicky in my skit. Fine with me: I'll just use
that as grist for the celebrity mill, to gain more ears for my
own brand of queer activism. Imagine me contacting all the gay
and mainstream papers and TV/radio: "Hey, the police
commissioner is suing me for doing a parody of him! Would you
like to cover the issue?"

So I showed the article to various people and bartenders of
Hole in the Wall...and they really went wild over my parody of
their saloon! Then in comes Donald, whom I helped inspire
quitting his speed use, and is now doing fabulously well (just
got a new job and a nice place to live). I had not seen him
for over a week (since he got badly bashed), and was concerned
for him. Well, not to worry: he gave me a glowing report, hugs
and kisses, and thanked me for my friendship.

"Well," I thought, "This is even MORE auspicious than I
thought. I'll have to add this to my essay I'll post to my
class, when I get home". Finally, I began my trek home,
walking as it were on Cloud 9. Then who should I bump into on
the way, but Saleem, a belly dancer and host of many great
Arab gay events (mostly in Los Angeles)...but he's up here, to
help Yvette and some others, including Amnesty International.
We met at the Arab Festival...and he has been the one
recommending me to other gay Arabs, as a comic entertainer.
But it's not like we have ever spoken over the phone, or meet
in person by accident or intent. So it was another auspicious

And that's my wonderful true story I thought I'd share. A
living example of the healing power of humor; and an
affirmation of the good direction I am going. Take pride in
your ability to put a smile on others' faces; you never know
how much BENEVOLENCE you do for others, by lightening their
heart (especially in these most difficult times)! See you all
tomorrow on what I consider ANOTHER auspicious day in my life.
And today's another great day, as I'm to perform at my first
one-man show this afternoon. (Or should I say one-FAIRY show?)

Well, you're a great audience, but it's time for me to pack up
my props and go. May a piece be with you. Ciao!

P.S.: I am looking to create a support network for other
sexual-minority open-mic entertainers, who are JUST STARTING
OUT: not just comedy, but spoken-word stuff (like poetry,
story-telling). We can go together to open-mic jams, meet on
our own as a social group, and help promote each other. Who
knows? Maybe we'll even have our own comedy troupe! So if you
consider yourself part of the sexual-minority world, and are
interested in this support team, please contact me. Certainly,
everyone at our class has the talent to succeed...all great
material; and I'd like very much to continue our associations.


---second letter:

From: Ezekiel Krahlin 
To: Hyena Comedy Institute Classmates
Received: 10/25/03  09:31 PM
Subject: Concern about this heat wave: move the show?

I got heat sick today, just walking 20 blocks, very casually
(through the Mission, from 8th & Folsom to Bernal Heights at
Precita). I was quite careful to drink cold liquids and stay all I suffered were anxiety attacks for about an
hour, including claustrophobia at a wine-tasting party that
has a tiny backyard on the ground level, a tiny redwood porch
on the second level, and a tiny living room/tiny kitchen/tiny
bathroom/tiny (you were wondering when I'd finally get to
this) bedroom.

But worst of all, was a very narrow, orange-painted hallway
w/steep wooden stairs. I almost literally had to look
vertically DOWN from the landing, in order to view the front
door below. So I had to go outside twice, breathe the air, and
stroll a bit while the air cooled off (relatively speaking).

It was a lovely gathering, and I got to tell some of my
wonderful stories, and describe my gay activist adventures and
ideas. Lots of very intelligent, compassionate folks. We had

However, assuming the heat wave continues, and we still plan
to do our show above Bikram...I'm afraid I'll have to back out
of this. My concern is not limited to my own health...but to
anyone who attends as an audience (as well as ourselves and

I hope that maybe our place could be moved just for that time,
to the old, basement area. Or maybe even Dolores Park? I'm
toying with calling Shannon, to discuss this. Though I
wouldn't be surprised if others may already be thinking same.

I HOPE I haven't come off as a mutineer...but I am often put
into situations where I must speak out, though others may see
me as a wet rag. (Which I'm wearing on my head now, BTW, to
keep cool. And if you're not, then I suggest you do. NOW.)

"Got Zeke?"
-Harvey Milk Advisory Board

===end of letters (thanks for reading!)