Kate Clinton’s nephew came out two years ago at Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, as a republican.
“We were horrified!” Clinton says about she and her partner Urvashi Vaid’s reaction.
Will the comedian try to put a liberal spell on him? Of course. In the meantime, though, she’ll continue to figure out which of her nine nieces and nephews aren’t straight.
“I think it must be a burden to be a gay niece or nephew of ours. They’re like, ‘Oh my God, if I come out they’re going to make me get in a parade. If I come out, I have to march. If I come out, they’ll give me a megaphone,'” laughs Clinton from her apartment, where she accomplished a major feat: cramming 24 people in for Thanksgiving dinner.
Kate Clinton: I still don’t know how we did it. I keep looking at that room thinking, “How did they all get in there?” It was great because some of my family has met some of her (Vaid’s) family, but it was all together. Urvashi, she made some things. I basically made the dinner. But she made some Indian side dishes, which really saved a really boring traditional Thanksgiving dinner. ‘Cause (during) Thanksgiving dinner you don’t ever really chew; you basically suck down an entire meal.
Between The Lines: And then you get all the leftovers, too!
KC: Mmhmm. Not many though because the next day my very active sister-in-law organized a – what does she call it? – The Turkey Trot. And we all ran in the park and then everybody basically came over and … we got rid of our leftovers.
BTL: How’s the weather there? You’re in New York, right?
Kate Clinton: Yeah, I guess. I don’t know. It was 72 on Saturday (laughs). What to wear? It’s pouring now. It’s supposed to get cooler. Ay, ay, ay.
BTL: Crazy global warming!
KC: It’s not global warming. How many times do I have to tell you, Mr. “Inconvenient Truth”? It’s El Nino. That’s what they’re saying now. Damn El Nino (laughs).
BTL: (Laughs) So, how have you been?
KC: I’ve been great! I finished my 25th Anniversary Tour in mid-December. I’ve had a little time off the road … .
BTL: And now you’re touring a lot this year. Your 26th Anniversary Tour?
KC: (Laughs) Yeah! The next year. Actually we’re calling the 2007 tour “The Climate Change Tour.” And you know I will talk about climate change, dammit!
BTL: The last time we chatted for your 25th anniversary you told me about the embarrassing situation you had when you got a colonoscopy.
KC: I did? I have no boundaries (laughs).
BTL: (Laughs) Any other interesting medical stories as of late?
KC: I started going to a new dentist, and his assistant I knew was this woman from Russia and after she put in about the 16th X-ray, and she’s standing out in the hallway, and I go, “Where are you from?” The voice from the other room says, “Chernobyl.” I thought, “Oooh” (laughs).
BTL: (Laughs) Hey, did you watch “The L Word” premiere? I know you were on an episode of it, but I don’t know if you actually follow it.
KC: I was. … I did the first show of the third season. And actually (I) went to the big “L Word” premiere party last night at the Copacabana in New York. It was amazing. They showed the episode, but who could hear? … ‘Cause every time everybody’s favorite character appeared everybody’s cheering (laughs).
BTL: Whom were you cheering for?
KC: I don’t know if you know but Shane is based on my life. All that butch sexual energy, it’s all me. I don’t know how they got all that information. So I was rooting for her.
BTL: How were your holidays?
KC: They were blissful. I went to Provincetown before Christmas and was there through New Year’s. And again it was very mild and very quiet in Provincetown.
BTL: What was the craziest thing you did while you were there?
KC: The craziest? I lost a holiday Scrabble tournament to my girlfriend.
BTL: Oh no!
KC: I’m still not over it. Probably because she’s taunting (me) and rubbing it in all the time.
BTL: Did you make a New Year’s resolution?
KC: I do have a New Year’s resolution. I think it was to remember my New Year’s resolutions (laughs). … Last year’s was very simple. I tend to be able to accomplish the simpler ones (like) after I use the sink, clean it up. Leave no broccoli bits in the drainer. Come on. I did very well.
BTL: I’m sure your partner was happy.
KC: She didn’t even notice. Are you kidding me? So this year, well, it has something to do with Angelina Jolie. I really don’t want to disclose.
BTL: Uh-oh. I understand.
KC: Yeah, you know. Oh, but then we saw – what’s her name? – Penelope Cruz in “Volver.” Have you seen that?
BTL: Oh, I haven’t. But I hear it’s wonderful.
KC: Oh, my God! Then we saw “Dreamgirls” last weekend. … Beyonce looked like she was just about to get into the role when the movie ended. But that girl, Jennifer (Hudson)! … In a very crowded Manhattan theater, when she did her “I’m Not Going” song, people cheered in the theater.
BTL: That’s how it was here!
KC: Ah! It was great. I have goosebumps right now. The guy across the hall from us here gave us the soundtrack. He said, “Please take this. My wife has been playing it non-stop.”
BTL: What was the best gift you received during Christmas?
KC: The best gift I received was from my girlfriend. You know every year I ask for world peace, but (long sigh) I didn’t get it this year again. You have to work for it apparently. I got the full collection of Beethoven Symphony. Isn’t that amazing? I’m currently trying to figure out how to download it on my iPod. Everybody else is bopping along and I’m like –
BTL: Listening to Beethoven? (laughs)
KC: (Laughs) Yes. ‘Cause I had a tragic experience. I mostly have audio books on my iPod. And I generally listen to non-fiction. I love to read fiction but audio books are great when you travel. You can put something in and not know where you are. Like, “Oh, my God, I’m in the Detroit airport again!” (laughs) Which is lovely, better than the old one, let’s face it. … So everybody else is bopping along, and I’m listening to the biography of Lincoln and going, “Somebody shot Lincoln!” and flying off the back of the treadmill and people are looking at me like, “What!?” So I’m trying to get a little more music (on my iPod).
BTL: You can put the “Dreamgirls” soundtrack on there now. There’s some peppy music on there.
KC: Oh, you’re right!
8 p.m. Jan. 26
Royal Oak Music Hall