The Creek Street Cabaret was already buzzing by the time I got there, the faithful followers of the event mingling with the newcomers. Much like going to Kayhi, this was another first for me as I’d never been to a Story Slam! before. When I asked what the night would entail, the answer ranged from improvisational comedy to dramatic storytelling. Expectations were all over the place, but what came of it was a casual sense of sharing. The storytellers held no hint of stage fright, the relaxed atmosphere making it easy for anyone to tell their tales.
There were a handful of stories that I enjoyed for a multitude of reasons. Carmel with her charming story of how she became an advocate for foster care was an incredible tale for breaking the proverbial ice of the night. Afterwards, Keith told a story of his first brush with the law, which included his mother, Bev, being the heroine of it all. Bev was the next storyteller, conveniently, telling how falling into a puddle had served as her goal to do something new every day. Humor came next as Joey took the stage to talk about his inability to park a massive van in Juneau, which inevitably led to a relatable moment involving hiding in the front seat of the van as the person he had blocked in tried to leave.
Katy took the stage next to tell an adorable story of how she and her husband met, which revolved around long surfer hair and a third wheel. It was one of my favorite stories of the night. Afterwards, Hannah took the mic and imagined telling her 18-year-old self who she has become and how much she had changed. Hanna commented that she became the polar opposite of who she used to be, which hit the theme dead center as her past self wouldn’t have believed the path she took. Rebecca told charming stories of how she had lied when she was younger, all of which revolved around food and a love for candy. (To be fair, I would’ve hidden the tofu loaf as well if it meant getting a popsicle!) Her vigilante justice of giving ranch dressing-filled rolls to rude students in the lunch line was a touch of the hero we all deserve in those middle school days.
Chazz, a Ketchikan native, told stories of his days in high school and how he became part of a fight club that was mostly composed of playing video games and eating pizza. The club, which could be construed as a lighthearted gang, ended up constructing a snow phallus in a church parking lot, thinking that it was a brilliant idea. In the end, it made for incredible story fodder, getting more than a handful of laughs from the audience. It was enough of a performance to have something of an encore where he further explained the inner workings of the weekend fight club, which had no connection to the official fight club in Ketchikan. Following on his heels was Sheila who fondly recalled growing up as a prankster in her household and how the behavior followed her through adulthood. The story she chose to share involved replacing her coworker’s sports photo with a list of demands in order to get the photo back. Sheila seemed particularly good at throwing people off the trail and pinning the blame on others, but alas, she had come clean at the school year’s end, taking fault much to her coworker’s surprise.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening for everyone, the ambiance of the Creek Street Cabaret mixing well with the stories told. Story Slam! is an untapped secret, one that should be shared with the entire community for both support and entertainment. I am definitely looking forward to attending more of these evenings with my Cabaret Coffee in hand!
The next Story Slam! will be at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, December 10th, with the theme “The Plot Thickens”. See you there!
- K-Town's Roving Art Observer