In which we ask the same questions Teen magazine asked now-pregnant teen idol Jamie Lynn Spears; see original interview here.
Let's get this out of the way: J'adore Rachel Shukert. Sassy, brassy, raunchy, smart--what more could one ask for? Well, how about a sassy, brassy, raunchy and smart essay collection by that same Rachel Shukert? Introducing Have You No Shame? Just published by Villard/Random House this month, Shame chronicles, among other hijinks, the writer-performer-provocateur experience growing up in whitebread Omaha, Nebraska, in that city's only Jewish elementary school. It should be noted that her sestina, "Subterranean Gnomesick Blues; or, The Gnome Who Whet My Fleshy Tent," which first appeared in the McSweeney's Sestinas page, also graces the pages of The Best American Erotic Poems: From 1800 to the Present. We caught up with Shukert between performances as actress Pamela Ann Windchime, who plays the character of Donna Kettering in Wasp Cove, a Dallas/Falcom Crest-type soap opera performed onstage, which she co-created and co-wrote with Julie Klausner. And we're glad we did catch up with her!
BAPB: You’re in Jr. High, right?
RS: No! I’m in Sr. High! You’d think I’d be pregnant in Jr. High? What do I look like to you, white trash?
What are you most looking forward to?
I can’t wait until the moment the baby’s head crowns, and I can feel my labia tearing as I shriek in agony. What kind of question is this? I’m a pregnant teenager; are you some kind of sadist? But also, I just want to say, if that Sex and the City Movie doesn’t come out soon, I am seriously going to put my fist through the window. I just need to know what happens to those elderly prostitutes!
What kind of car do you want?
What kind of car do you want to give me?
What's your favorite subject?
Um, that should be “whom is” your favorite subject. What are you, illiterate? And the answer is Justin Rodriguez, 1243 Cumberland Dr. Marietta GA., 30365
Do you play any sports?
No. I was on the swim team, but that was before “what’s his name” “accidentally ejaculated” into my “vagina.”
Are kids in school treating you differently because of Nickelodeon exposure?
They were pretty understanding. I was afraid they might ostracize me after the preacher railed against the evil of the new “moving pictures” but it seems like they might be catching on. Emmett Pinkerton, whose father is the hurdy-gurdy man, even asked me to keep company with him tomorrow night at the ice-cream social, and later, we might take an amble on down to the Old Footbridge. Of course, I’m not sure Mr. Sennett will approve, since he paid Mother five whole dollars for me, but golly, mister! A girl’s only young once!
You have a new puppy named Ali, right? How is she?
If by “puppy” you mean cousin, and if by “cousin” you mean “sex slave.” She’s fine.
How old is she now?
How the fuck should I know?
She's a mix, right?
No! She is 100% American Indian.
What are your feelings about Ali?
She’s okay, I guess. I wish she was more flexible, but I guess you get what you pay for.
Where did you find her?
At that bar Sullivan’s, on Leavenworth Street. You know, the one with all the sailors? She was passed out on the sidewalk, in a pool of vomit, with her lycra miniskirt hiked up all the way above her waist, and I just felt kind of sorry for her, you know?
Do you dress her up?
I try to. Sometimes I dress her up as a fireman, sometimes we put on the Richard Nixon mask, for a playful look. But usually, I just keep her chained naked to the wall. That’s how she prefers it, really.
Do you try to coordinate it with what you're wearing?
Yes. For example, sometimes when she’s playing Nixon, I’ll put on my Henry Kissinger outfit, and we’ll drive around to all the Vietnamese restaurants in Los Angeles, which is always good for a laugh. Or other times I’ll dress up as a pilgrim. She’ll teach me how to plant corn, and I’ll give her smallpox. It’s all fun and games until she’s permanently disfigured.
What is your fashion style?
What do you like to do for fun?
I don’t know if I should tell you this, but I’m kind of stalking the guy from the Mac commercials? Not the cute one that’s dating Drew Barrymore, the other one, with the glasses and the really round head. The other day—oh my God, it was so funny!—I actually ran into him at Baja Fresh, and I told him if he got in the car with me, I would get Zac Efron to give him a hand job, and oh my God! He totally got in my car! So then I drove him to an undisclosed location, and I put him in a noose, and took pictures on my iPhone, which I sent to his wife.
Was it really scary?
She was super scared! And he kept saying how it was like something out of something called a clockworm orange or something, so I hit him as hard as I could in the face, and like the second I did that, he got the biggest boner I’ve ever seen. Dude, it was so funny!
TV anything you watch?
Like everyone in the First World, I am obsessed with Gossip Girl. I also love Taxi. That Jim Ignatowski is hilarious. I just want to kick him.
Are you watching Joey?
I don’t know what a Joey is.
So, you have to get TiVo?
You better fucking believe I’m going to get TiVo for what he’s done to me. Motherfucker.
Do you have an acting coach working with you?
I did. Now I have an acting coach working in me. Touché!
Is Zoe like you?
We look exactly the same. We inhabit the same body. And we both love soup, and Maroon 5.
How are you not alike?
I’m pregnant, and Zoe is not pregnant. Zoe’s name is Zoe, and my name is not Zoe. And also, Zoe loves to eat clams, oysters, and other shellfish, and I am a heterosexual.
Will that change as you get older?
I don’t know. I’m told that it can, but the person who told me that was this lady therapist my mom sent me to who totally tried to make out with me.