I decided a long time ago that I wouldn't dress up to give readings anymore. I've been doing readings for over twenty years - I'm not a tarot monkey and I'm not gonna dance for you, right? But then, the lovely Jennifer Adele asked if I'd be interested in talking to the Beggar's Carnivale people about doing readings at their next event, and oh yeah, I'd need to dress like a carnival-esque fortune teller. There was obviously only one thing to do. I went out and bought the biggest pair of hoop earrings I could find. Um, yes, please!
A few years ago, I went to Beggar's Carnivale with some friends. I wasn't really sure what to expect. After working in the Beggar's Alley for the first time recently, I realized that I still don't know what to expect, and won't ever know, and that's part of what makes the Carnivale so exceptional.
When I arrived, everyone helped me find my spot, answered questions, listened to my nervous prattling...it was so sweet and supportive. And they don't know me! One lady helped me calm down by letting me read for her, which was rad. Then, my winsome assistant, Other Melissa, arrived and helped me get dressed. I usually don't need assistance, but I was going for authenticity, and pink Converse low tops don't generally scream "Midway Fortune Teller". She helped me get into the thousand layers of skirt and scarf that my friend, Alyson, loaned me. (and the few inches of corset. damn), and I calmed down a bit more. It felt like I was setting the scene for a great show. I'm not a performer, so this was a bit new to me. I was so excited to be part of his event, that I didn't even mind wearing makeup. I know, right? I gave Other Melissa a reading and then sat in my little stripey tent, waiting for the show to begin.
Other Melissa wandered her cute self around, handing out business cards and taking in the sights. I know I haven't really described Beggar'.s Carnivale well. That's because you can't. You can describe it. You can talk about what you saw there, but until you're actually present, anything that you say about it will fall flat and take the color out of it. Google it. Better yet, GO. Give yourself permission to be amazed for a night. You'll thank me later.
The show started, and WOW, did I have not a damn thing to do. :) Honestly, I don't blame anyone. I wouldn't have left the show, either. As the night went on, I did a few readings, and they went well. I had just resigned myself to not many readings and a whole lot of crowd watching when intermission hit. Um. Damn. There was a line. A few lines. It was awesome. :) I was tired, but so excited afterwards that I couldn't sleep.
I realize that this blog is a bit rambling, but I didn't want to let my wonderful experience at Beggar's Carnivale slip by without writing about it. Thanks to Jennifer Adele for the referral, to Sandi Powell for being so gracious and letting me hang out in the stripey tent, to Ryan Edward for my badass new business cards, Anne Portell for makeup and for making my hair do that!, Allyson Taggart for wenching me up, Other Melissa for being the best assistant and bewb wrangler in the Universe, and to all of the performers and vendors for making it an incredible night. ee you in August!