Did he, or didn’t he?

I’m only posting this because I care about you.

You’ve no doubt been:

Waiting...to hear about what happened...to me...or to him...or if the hat make too much of a statement.

Waiting…to hear about what happened to me…or to him…or if my hat is a bit much.


wondering (about how things turned out for me, not wondering about inane stuff like if they make a phone the thickness of a potato chip, is it baked or fried?)

Wondering…about how things turned out…for me…or him…or if above-the-waist pants will ever make a comeback.


Having difficulty focusing...it's happening now, isn't it?

Having difficulty focusing…it’s happening now, isn’t it?


Well, I’m here to end the madness.

After reading this, you can go back to your normal lives. Good luck with that.

After reading this, you can go back to your normal lives. Good luck with that.

Remember the post I did about the comedian, Gary Gulman?

No? Well, click here to refresh your addled brain.

You didn’t click on the link even if you didn’t remember the post, did you? That’s okay. I understand. You’re busy.

Here’s a synopsis.

  • I love Gary’s smart, observational, self-deprecating humor.
  • I saw him perform live in Portland.
  • He seemed depressed.
  • I was worried.
  • I asked my readers if I should contact him to express my concerns.
  • Many of you shared your advice.

I emailed Gary.

I told him I was a fan in the most complimentary way imaginable. Yada yada yada. And then I wrote this:
Back to Portland, you and me. You didn’t see me, but I saw you…a you I wasn’t expecting. Having seen everything you’ve put out there for audience viewing pleasure, my expectations were through the roof. I should have known better. The Buddha says that all suffering begins with expectations. He’s right.
Oh, I laughed plenty. No regrets. I’d buy tickets twice as expensive to see you again tomorrow!
Here’s the thing…I can’t stop worrying about you. Is that too weird? It’s the material you did on your depression that’s got me concerned.
I was laughing along with everyone else, seeing way too much of my former behaviors in many of the examples you were sharing (the leveling off of the ice cream—it’s good to know I’m not alone!). Then something happened as you kept going on with the theme of depression: I felt myself getting sad.
What? Sad? At a comedy club with Gary he-da-main-funny-man-in-da-land Gulman as the headliner? I don’t drink (well, okay, water. I drink water) and let’s say edible marijuana is delightful and totally medicinal (like any flavor of brandy for any ailment, according to my grandmother, God rest her soul), so my sadness wasn’t due to inebriation.
My sadness, I believe, was because I felt your pain.
Either you are so freaking professional and dedicated to your craft that you became depressed to execute that new material to perfection. If so, may I say to you, Sir, Bravo!
Or, you were simply being you and sharing your life with strangers. For an hour or so, we all got to laugh. Almost everyone went home and went back to their lives with a sigh and a few comments about a fun evening. And then there’s me who ruminated for two weeks about whether I should contact you or not.
This could go one of four ways:
  1. Lorna is crazy. Delete. End of her. Now I’m going to go make myself a bowl of cereal. Reading this email was exhausting.
  2. Lorna is sweet, but needs to get a grip because stand-up in a small club is nothing like a Netflix special or appearance on every talk show ever. I’ll have my manager send her a head shot of me with a stamped autograph, that should get her off my case.
  3. Lorna is perceptive and compassionate in addition to being sweet. I’m going to ruminate over what to do about this email. She’ll probably never hear from me, but my intentions were noble.
  4. Lorna is perceptive, compassionate, sweet, and kind of funny. I hope she isn’t considering a career in comedy. It’s not for everyone. I’ll email her pronto to discourage her…but nicely.
 In case you haven’t spent enough time with me, I wrote a blog about you and my dilemma (should I contact you or not?) after seeing your live performance. Here’s the link. You may here this all the time, but I’ve never written to a celebrity before. 
That’s a lie. I wrote to Ellen DeGeneres once. I’m certain she chose Option 1 above.
No matter what, Gary, I believe in you and I remain in awe of your wit, intellect, and courage. Next time you’re in Portland, you probably won’t see me, but I’ll definitely see you!
Always, Lorna
A couple of weeks went by. Then I got this response:
Thank you for caring. I will be OK. Happy Holidays.

I’m not sure what to make of all this.

I lied. I have some theories. Stay tuned…

Darn that Lorna! She's up to her old tricks again. Or is it that she's just older and trickier? Darn that Lorna!

Darn that Lorna! She’s up to her old tricks again. Or is it that she’s just older and trickier? Darn that Lorna!

~ by Lorna's Voice on January 16, 2017.

51 Responses to “Did he, or didn’t he?”

  1. Reblogged this on The Owl Lady.

  2. Perhaps his “in box” was filled to overflowing with concerned writers and your letter was so witty and charming that he just had to respond at least briefly and will write more later? Lol! Looking forward to your next installment…

  3. LOL I just don’t know what to say, so I’ll just laugh for a bit longer and wait for the next installment.

  4. Lorna, you’re wonderful and loving and also not responsible for him. Who in the past have you felt responsible for keeping safe? xx

    • Narelle, the list is as long as the people I know and don’t know. I know I’m not responsible for him, and I certainly don’t lose sleep over worrying about his wellbeing. I noticed how I felt that evening and I noticed how I kept thinking about him. After I emailed him, I stopped thinking about him so much. That told me that I did the right thing for me (and perhaps for him). When I see a human or animal in need, I feel the the need and try to help in a way that feels right for me. It’s what I hope someone would do for me or my loved ones.

  5. Hola Lorna,
    I do remember the 1st post. I thought it was odd of him to go to the depression zone in a comedy club but he may have been desperate to let it out. His response to your letter is also odd. Perhaps, he has a secretary or service that answers all of his letters. Anyway, they say many, many comedians are depressed and look for approval in laughter. I remember when Robin Williams died. All I could think of was how he always shared, on many, many talk shows, his depressive life. Be well Gary Gullman …
    Adios amiga,
    Izzy 😎

  6. <em? I think you nailed it. I was surprised to see that he responded. I agree with one of your readers who says most comedians, if not all, suffer from some degree of depression. Comedy is how they cope. Dying to find out what your impressions are.

  7. That was super funny! Hahahaha! Love that you took the time to write him! Hoping that it lifted his heart the way it did mine!

  8. I think this should be retitled, “Return of the Comedy Club Stalker.”
    I love the line, “you probably won’t see me, but I’ll definitely see you,” (accompanied by spooky laughter).

    It was nice of him to respond to your note. I wonder if he called Homeland Security and had your name added to the “no fly” roster and the “no firearms sale” list.

    I was snubbed by Dave Barry, but Patrick McManus (who lives out in your neck of the woods) responded with a nice note, but Pat’s in his eighties and was probably just tickled that someone knew he was still alive.

  9. I can’t help thinking – maybe your love and concern for someone was wasted on this occasion… but hats off (if I wore one, actually was looking at some last weekend) to you for your efforts. At least you did get a few words in reply…..

  10. Good suspense at every stage for curiosity to know what comes next.

  11. I wish the best for him. You never know that when you sent that email it was the tipping point that made him reach out for help. I hope he lets you know if that’s the case. And I just have to say that depression and anxiety have never felt “normal” to me. xo

  12. I don’t know why, but this left me feeling sad. Too often, I think, humor can mask such deep feelings. I can’t help but reflect on Robin Williams for one thing. You know, I’ve got to think you really touched him and I read a lot into his response. Now I’ve got to google him–never heard of him. I’m way too sheltered or something. Pop culture just ain’t my thing.

  13. I’m all ears.

  14. Did you really send that to him? Wow. I’m not sure if you’re aware of this, but most comedians suffer from some kind of depression and/or anxiety. It’s totally normal for them. Well, I guess it was nice of you to inquire – I’ll await the next segment…

    • Yup. I really did. And I know that comedians wrestle with depression. I just was shocked at how disheveled and “off” he was. He also seemed genuinely touched when a few audience members (not me) held a candle up at the end of his performance (my table’s candle had burned out). I could tell he was in pain and felt the need to reach out to him. I don’t know if it was the right thing to do; I only know that it was the “me” thing to do.

  15. Wow. That sounds like a suicide note to me. And all because of you reminding him how depressed he was. Way to go, Lorna.

  16. Now that’s funny, The immediate reaction running through my mind was exactly the same as Paulette’s – hmmmm. Can’t wait to hear your theories. I do hope Gary’s email reply came before the holidays, though…

  17. Hmmmmm, what’s next????? Cliff hanger??? Staying tuned… 🙂

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