My name is Alexis Pereira. I live in NYC, where I dabble in writing and acting. My work is regularly featured on Funny or Die and I've even created some original work for Funny or Die's Youtube page.
I currently write and perform at a monthly show at UCB, and I was even once on a house improv team there!
In this tumblr, you will find what I hope are interesting essays about my life. I like to think of myself as a statesman, though I may not know what that means exactly.
If you want to see and hear more about me, please visit alexispereira.net
Thanks, King Alexis!
The things that beginner students have problems with are the things we all have problems with. You don’t just learn something in improv and then you’re perfect at it, it’s always a skill that can be tightened and sharpened.
So if you’re new to improv, don’t get in your head about having trouble with something because everybody else is working on the same thing.
A large man with a cane got on the train yesterday morning in a particularly foul mood.
"Where are the trains today?!" he asked. "I gotta be wet AND wait for this damn train?!"
And it was true, the express was 13 minutes away and so everybody piled into the local. Unfortunately that meant a crowded train.
"Oh God, only one train for everybody!" he yelled again.
I could see everybody was a little perturbed by the man, especially as he made his way to the center of the car to get to a seat. The passengers quietly got out of his way. However, as he tried to sit, he slipped and fell onto his seat.
"How are people supposed to sit down?! There’s no bar and I’m breaking my damn ass here!"
I could see several people glancing over to see who was this man yelling out loud. But he just closed his eyes.
That is until a woman started belting the first few notes of a gospel song.
Everybody’s eyes went from the man to the woman a few yards away. It was one of those NY moments where everybody in unison drops their shoulders, shakes their heads, and mouths, “now what?” But after a few lines of her song, the large man spoke up:
"NO! NO! SORRY! NOT TODAY! YOU NOT SINGING THAT SHIT IN HERE! NOPE!"
The woman stopped singing and angrily looked over at the man, but he stared her down. She then just walked through the doors into the next train car. He again closed his eyes as everybody now gave him an appreciative smile.
That man was a hero.
The first joke I ever told on the first date I ever went on was when I was 18. We decided to meet at Queens Blvd, which was and continues to be a dangerous street to cross.
She was a couple minutes late, and she asked if I had waited long.
"No, I decided to cross Queens Blvd a few times. It was exhilarating."
She laughed and I laughed and I felt great having gotten her to laugh.
But really I had been waiting an hour and a half.
My girlfriend’s niece and nephew have become 1 and 1a of my favorite people, and it made me remember a weird thing I saw happen last summer:
I worked a Saturday and it happened to be on a day where they closed the street and put up a children’s fair. Though I have no children of my own (by choice), I decided to buy a hot dog on my lunch break and walk around. I happened upon a giant stage with a sign that read, “Puppetry Comedy Show,” brought to us by some bank. As a fan of both comedy and puppetry, I decided to check it out. A man walked out on stage in front of two large treasure chests.
"Hey kids, I can’t find my puppets! Will you help me?" he asked.
The kids half-heartedly said yeah. He told them he couldn’t hear them. They answered louder.
He then walked over to a chest and asked, “are my puppets in here?!”
He opened the chest and it was empty. The kids half-heartedly said no. He again said he couldn’t hear them and they again answered louder
He then said, “you know the great thing about puppets is that when my girlfriend catches me talking to myself, I can just tell her I’m practicing with my puppets.”
What a weird joke, I thought. I guess it’s 2014, but it felt pretty ballsy to make a joke about your girlfriend and mental illness in a purported children’s puppet show. Especially since we hadn’t seen any puppets yet.
He was met with silence though, and he walked to the other chest.
"Are my puppets in here?!" he asked. He opened the chest and it was again empty. There were a few annoyed murmurs in the crowd, and I felt bad for the parents standing there holding their kids up so they could see the stage.
"Empty! I feel like I just opened up my savings and checking accounts!" said the man.
He was again greeted with a steely silence, and now I was really confused.
What hell is going on here?! I wondered. Is this guy just doing his open mic material?
At that point, a few parents started walking away and I joined them. As we did, we heard him ask if the puppets were behind the chests.
But they were not.
When I was seven, my aunt brought a giant chocolate rabbit to our family’s Easter get-together.
Easter is pretty straightforward in my family. They’re deeply religious, and so all they focus on is the fact that Jesus is back. In fact, they were just downright confused about why my aunt brought a giant chocolate rabbit, having never before seen one.
"Y eso pa que?" my mom wondered aloud before she took it and placed it above the fridge.
My aunt tried to explain that Americans ate chocolate on Easter, and that they also celebrated rabbits and eggs. We surmised that it’s because Americans like to farm, though nobody was entirely placated by that answer.
My aunt also said that we could all share the giant rabbit, which was about a foot and a half tall, but everybody was grossed out by it. My family hates American candy, especially chocolate, and instead prefer to eat arroz con leche, which I find disgusting.
Being the only kid who liked American candy, it was agreed that they would just give it to me. And boy was I excited - a whole chocolate rabbit all to myself! We talked about it all day and made jokes about how fat I would get after I ate it. I walked by it every chance I got and made lusty eyes at it like a husband before his wedding night.
Finally, as we ate dessert, my mom handed me the rabbit. I took it out of its clear plastic box and held it in my arms like a baby. I then took a bite out of it and it broke into several pieces.
We all stood there stunned before I whined, “It’s completely hollow!”
We agreed that it was misleading to sell a giant hollow chocolate rabbit. My uncle checked, and it didn’t say “hollow” anywhere on the box.
Also, it tasted like shit, but we again agreed that a nearly 2 foot rabbit that cost $4 was probably not going to be the best quality chocolate. We threw it in the garbage and I steamed quietly while my family happily enjoyed some arroz con leche.