Saturday, September 29, 2012

High Lily, High Lily

My favorite line from Lily Tomlin's masterful album "Modern Scream" comes from this mock question:

Interviewer: "Lily, is it true you have a drug problem?"
Lily: "Yes, it's so hard to get good grass these days."

As one of the two "tokin' women" honoring George Carlin when he posthumously won the Mark Twain Prize,  she opened with, "I flatter myself to think that George and I somehow drank from the same comedy fountain. Or should I say 'inhaled'? Or perhaps I shouldn't."

Lily inhaled on screen with Dolly Parton and Jane Fonda in the  1980 movie "9 to 5," at a pot party that bonded the characters in a deliciously wicked plot to improve their workplace conditions. (It's true: pot leads to communism.) Tomlin's "Tasteful Lady" is a great send-up of the kind of "Mothers Against Everything" that would put the clampdown on cannabis.

Yet I had never heard Tomlin fully "out" herself as a pot smoker until the October issue of Culture Magazine, whose cover is graced with Lily rocking a black bowler hat.

Asked if she's an advocate for marijuana legalization, Tomlin replied, "Yes, yes. Of course."

She said she doesn't have a doctor's recommendation, and asked, "Can you get me one?...I have to rely on the kindness of strangers. I don't use everyday. I'm not that fresh and hip." To the question, does she have any favorite of cannabis strains, Tomlin replied, "I wish I was that sophisticated."

At 72, Tomlin is back on TV as the mother of Reba McEntire in the upcoming ABC sitcom Malibu. She'll appear onstage on January 19, 2013 at the Sunset Cultural Center in Carmel, CA.

In May, Tomlin and longtime writing/life partner Jane Wagner were honored by Sen. Barbara Boxer. Maybe the two should have a toke, and a talk. UPDATE: Maybe they did

UPDATE 9/14: Tomlin will receive a 2014 Kennedy Center Honor. The gala will be broadcast on December 30. (Many other Very Important Potheads have received the Honor.) She and Jane Fonda will co-star in the new Netflix series Grace and Frankie.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Tales of Two Tokin' Women: Fiona Apple and Lady Gaga

UPDATE 10/15: The Texas sheriff that arrested Apple 

Fiona Apple was caught on Wednesday with small amounts of marijuana and hashish in Sierra Blanca, Texas, making her the first woman to be nabbed in the same border town where Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg and Armie Hammer were also arrested by the US Border Patrol. (Hammer was reportedly carrying baked goods from his wife's bakedery.)

 Apple was arrested and jailed, and spoke about her experience at her Houston concert. It's about time someone spoke up about what a violating experience being jailed is. Apple's arrest is potentially much more serious than the others who got their wrists slapped, since hash possession reportedly can bring a 3-10 year sentence in Texas, even though it's just concentrated cannabis.

There is possibly no other artist who digs as deep as Apple does, with undeniable talent and honesty. She is back on the musical scene after a 7-year hiatis, with her presciently titled new album The Idler Wheel Is Wiser than the Driver of the Screw, And Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do. We wish all the best to the extraordinary machine that she is. She'll be in New Orleans on Monday night, and touring the East Coast thereafter.

Apple's arrest blunted my enthusiasm about the news that Lady Gaga lit up a joint onstage at her concert in Amsterdam, declaring weed "wondrous." She was quoted as telling The Sun newspaper: "I want you to know it has totally changed my life and I’ve really cut down on drinking."

One commenter wrote: "Good now she won't end up like Amy." (Gaga has famously gained 25 pounds, possibly due to the munchees and healthier habits.) Another wrote: "Good on you Lady Gaga. Makes me want to reach for one. Unfortunately it is totally acceptable for celeb's to indulge in whatever their desire, but not for regular folks like us. LoL." They're right, and I'm not laughing about it.

Tickets for Gaga's Born this Way Ball on Feb. 22 at Madison Square Garden go on sale on Sept. 28. Since she has 29 million Twitter followers, we think they're likely to sell out.