Ady Lady ponders salvation vs. shame in funny solo show

“I saw a muzzled dog vomit on the bus.”

That first line promises much, and monologist Ady Lady follows through, in her wildly funny show onstage at The Marsh in The City.

It’s called “From Piss to Bliss,” and the reason for what’s a seemingly off-putting title at the beginning becomes perfectly clear by the end of her hour-long story.

Ady’s a clever standup comic, and if she wants to become a preacher, she’s got a future in sermonizing. Directed by solo show expert David Ford (who helped develop the piece), Ady is truly captivating as she shares her how her daily life has become a spiritual journey — one to which many San Franciscans can relate.

She hilariously begins with her travails on Muni. Commutes, she rightly believes, should be times of “quiet introspection.”

Yet encounters with spewing canines; people punching each other to the point of drawing blood; and a gravelly voiced guy who has no compunction about loudly sharing an anecdote about his golden showers experience (on Easter Sunday, no less!) make it difficult for her to concentrate. However, one day, a person beautifully singing on the bus turns a wacky scene into a truly religious experience.

Next, she covers her work as a Segway tour guide, and how she somehow found herself with a job that required a helmet after answering an online ad seeking a person with “a passion for San Francisco, who could talk for two hours and has a gleeful sense of freedom and ease.”

The job also turned out to be an “opportunity for profundity.”

That insight came in connection with tour-goers who couldn’t master the “lean back” move in operating the vehicle, Would they choose to leave the group on the “van of salvation” or be ousted on the “van of shame”?

Lastly, Ady describes two harrowing days spent on the 39.3 mile breast cancer walk, a task she undertook with no more conviction than to see if she could find “epiphanies or joys in the simple act of going.”

With most participants there for more personal and compelling reasons, she found herself out of place among the slogan-reciting walkers and sea of pink tents.

And because she hadn’t really prepared, she was exhausted and limping. And disgusted by the multitude of Porta Potties, as well as how, in today’s high-tech world, there is no better way than that to deal with pee and poop.

However, her dismay is tempered not just by a text from her brother telling her he’s proud of her, but by a coworker whose unexpected presence results in a revelation.

So are all of her realizations in her amusing anecdotes from everyday life, which make a show called “From Piss to Bliss” something much deeper, and more satisfying, than a good joke.

REVIEW
From Piss to Bliss
Where: Marsh, 1062 Valencia St., S.F.
When: 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays, 5 p.m. Saturdays; closes July 9
Tickets: $20 to $100
Contact: (415) 282-3055, www.themarsh.org

Leslie Katz

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