NOT SO FAST: stir thoroughly

(Nicole McFeely)

“Thank you very much and welcome to Not So Fast. Uh, that is a title that we thought of. It’s caused a lot of controversy—a lot of people have been asking what it means.”

[slight pause]

“No. No one has asked,” Jack says.

A few people shed their seriousness—begin to chuckle.

“What does it mean!?” someone yells from the audience.

“We just needed a title,” Jack responds, and everyone begins to laugh.

My pops would have loved Not So Fast! He would love Jack Boulware and co-host Alan Fucking Black (check out his video and you’ll see why “fucking” should be his middle name). He would immediately take to their witty yet unaffected insouciance—their refusal to pander. Perhaps I’m biased, but I’ve always believed this to be the best kind of funny. The “let’s throw caution and expletives to the wind, knock back a few drinks and share some stories” kind of funny. Perhaps, this sort of rapport occurred over at Edinburgh Castle (which Alan owns and operates) so often, that one day they said, “hey, let’s get some of our badass friends together and turn this into a reading series.” Enter: the Hemlock Tavern. Add: a line-up of auspiciously talented and similarly minded literary folk: Bucky Sinister, Kelly Beardsley, Beth Lisick, and Alia Volz.  Stir thoroughly? Why not. I just needed a title.

Though “series” might be a stretch, seeing as how the event is held once a year (for more information on last year’s installment and how the show came into being, click here), perhaps if I call it one I can will it into being a regularly occurring staple of the ever-growing SF lit series scene. Pops would like that, I think. I know I would.

If you missed it, you should most definitely consider checking out all of the performances below, and should also seriously try to make it to these writers’ next readings, of which there are an abundance here.

Bucky Sinister

“The feeling is mutual; we both know this isn’t the real fight, we’re just sparring partners. I wonder if the part of me that falls in love is broken. A few months before, Maggie broke me bad, busted my heart with hers like a monkey busting open a coconut with another coconut.”


Kelly Beardsley

“I went running out of the house jumping off the porch yelling “there’s a wild boar in there, look out! One of the sheriff ladies yelled, “what? They got wild whores in there?”


Alan Black

“I moved my seat away from these fucking labels and listened to the psychiatrist reminding the group that those inclined to say the word “fucking” in their sentences was likely a sign that they were still fucking angry.”


Beth Lisick

“Who says you have to call the Tasteful Affair Catering truck just to have a holiday open house? You know who you are. Just because you have money doesn’t mean you can do it better by hiring someone, so F you Tammy and the horse you rode in on whose name is Jacob Martinson a baloney of a realtor, if you ask me. Okay, keep it positive Elayne. Don’t go down the hole.”

Alia Volz

“Listen, we got junkies, drunks and crack heads parking under the influence. Got half a million third world imports that can’t read signage. Got celebs and celeb’s producers and jackass lawyers who think the rules don’t apply to them. Every breed of scumbag rat drives these streets, and you cant change that, but you can encourage them to park in an orderly fashion.”


Jack Boulware

“Suiting up in my hotel room, I realize these thermals are designed for a 400 pound truck driver. Where’s the receipt? I don’t have the receipt. I slide on the giant pants, pull on my jeans, and yank the belt tight. It feels like an adult diaper, but if anything does happen, I am protected.”