Patricia Kane on karate books, dressing as Ethel Merman, and her new play Pulp

You may not find her in Ethel Merman drag ever again, but you might bump into playwright Patricia Kane when she's dressed in karate whites and muttering French conjugations to herself. Barring that, you can find her play, Pulp, at Stray Cat Theatre this week and next.

I knew I wanted to be in show business when I saw my mom play the villain in a community production of this kids show called The Purple Necked, Black Bearded Blatch. I knew all of her lines before she did, and I've been a marked woman ever since.

The worst thing about being a playwright is the lack of control once you hand your play over to a director and actors. As kind of a Type A personality, that really sucks.

The happiest day in my life was the day I walked through the door to an audition and found my partner-to-be who was doing the casting (yes, I got the job). We just celebrated our 21st anniversary yesterday, so I think that was the beginning of a pretty damn fine run.

If I could be anyone other than myself, it would be someone just like me but with a lot more money and a lot less angst. Also better clothes.

It's not entirely true, but I sometimes tell people that my hair would be completely white if I didn't dye it. Okay, so there'd be a little dishwater blond in there, too.

The fictional character I am most like is probably Beaker from the Muppets.

I am utterly terrified of something happening to my eyes. I freak out if people start talking any kind of eye stuff. I just can't handle it. Must be something bad from a former life.

I laugh uncontrollably at the things my partner says. We have the same sense of humor and just crack each other up over very quirky things. (Please see reference to 21 years together, above.) I stole many lines from her for Pulp.

The one thing I absolutely refuse to do on stage is take my clothes off. I'm turning 46 on Friday. 'Nuff said.

Something I have never admitted to anyone before is probably something I've never admitted to myself, either. I'm a pretty open book.

Currently, I am reading French and karate books. We're going to France this summer, so I'm trying to brush up my linguistic skills, and I'm testing for my second degree black belt in seido karate at the beginning of June, so I don't have much time for anything else.

The first time I got drunk, I was dressed as Ethel Merman for Halloween. I spent most of the night sitting in a big bamboo chair singing Janis Joplin songs, often in the style of Ms. Merman. Not a pretty sight.

Like my mother used to say, "C'mon, Christmas. We gotta get a move on."

 
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