When the Truth Doesn’t Hurt

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I was really, genuinely upset that the 8:00 o’clock show of Fuerza Bruta was cancelled. I had been looking forward to it all week. Two hours prior, I had thoroughly plucked my eyebrows, assembled my best casual night outfit and got a hold of my mother’s unlimited Metrocard, all in preparation for the show.

One hour prior, my friend told me that we were headed to a comedy show instead. Great.

After going on an adventure trying to find the venue, (Le) Poisson Rouge, I entered the building, unaware of what to expect. After finally tracking my friends down at the corner of the room, I soon realized that I was at a type of benefit concert. The event, which was called Uncivil Union, brought together various organizations, performers and comedians under one roof to shed light on the topic of discrimination against the LGBTQ community. There were a few touching stories, some very catchy songs and a lot of good jokes told that night – many of which belonged to comedian and celebrity, Cameron Esposito. She was absolutely great.

She was not great just because she was funny – nor was she great just because she had a kick-ass hair do: short on one side with a “side mullet” (as she called it), on the other. She was great because I could tell her comedy came from a place of pain, stemming from the experience of being gay in a community where homosexuality was disguised. In fact, it was so well hidden, Cameron didn’t even know she was gay as a kid, because she wasn’t aware that “gay was even a thing”. A gay child, she poignantly joked, should know that gay adults exist; how else is a child supposed to realized that he or she isn’t alone?

Cameron brought up many good points in her short time upstage, but I was ultimately mesmerized at how expertly she was able to make everyone aware of the sad truth that the world is discriminatory, prejudicial and sometimes, very exclusive. But instead of making this fact obvious through depressing stories and long-drawn out documentaries, Cameron was able to unite the audience and rally us all up by spitting out punchline after punchline. We began to make light of a situation that would normally make us uncomfortable, which is sometimes the best thing to do when times get rough.

People say that laughter is the best medicine – I wholeheartedly agree with this statement. But laughter – and laughing about something – also shows that you’ve overcome an obstacle. After all, we don’t laugh at a present pain. We laugh when we look back at a point in our lives and can think – damn, look how far I’ve come.