Fortune Feimster talks “Chelsea Lately” and hosting Club Skirts The Dinah

Fortune Feimster, the out lesbian sitting at Chelsea Handler‘s round table on Chelsea Lately, is not only a very funny lady, she’s also hosting this year’s Club Skirts The Dinah event in Palm Springs. How can a single celesbian-type person possibly host something that big? We met with Fortune at her show’s office to find out. She also talked about what else she’s working on, why leotards are OK, but white pants are not, and how New Year’s dreams really do come true.

AfterEllen.com: OK, so. You’re hosting The Dinah. What does that even mean?
Fortune Feimster:
I am the hostess with the mostess.

AE: How can you host something that big? It’s a whole long weekend of craziness.
FF:
I know. I’m the Lord of The Dinah. I’m going to be introducing some of the events, making announcements here and there, hosting the comedy show, and being a part of the dodgeball game that they have every year. Basically, I’m going to be popping up when people least expect it. The girls are going to be tired of me by the end of the weekend.

AE: I doubt that.
FF:
I’m bringing my bikini to keep them wanting more.

AE: You should save that for Saturday. You don’t want to lead with…
FF:
My best foot forward. [Laughs.] My best bikini body, forward.

AE:  What do you hope to get out of The Dinah this year?
FF:
The first time I went, it was very brief, so I don’t really count that. I decided to go last minute that year. Last year was my first full-on Dinah experience.

AE: That’s when you and Bridget McManus did Dance Magic, right?
FF
: That was the first time [I went.] Bridget and I did this thing with Cat Davis called Dance Magic, where we dressed up in leotards and did crazy dances on Brunch with Bridget. And the second year, she said, “Why don’t we do a dance competition at The Dinah? And we’ll wear our leotards.”

And I said, “You’re crazy. I’m never going to date for the rest of my life if I wear a leotard.” But she talked me into it.

AE: She’s very good at that. I was a guest on Brunch once, and by the time it was over, she had me fixing her bathroom sink.
FF: We were so embarrassed, walking out there. But when we did, there were hundreds of girls and they were going crazy, taking pictures of us and stuff. It ended up being the best time ever.

AE: That year was insane – I seem to remember a girl in a polka dot bikini climbing up the lighting scaffolding.
FF:
A girl even jumped on stage, and flashed me her boobies. Who knew that a leotard would get that reaction?

AE: You should walk in a leotard and a fanny pack all the time. Go to Trader Joe’s, or whatever because you never know. Look how many new fans you made that year.
FF:
The first time I went to Club Skirts, most people didn’t know who I was outside of the LA comedy scene. The next year was pretty cool because I had just done Last Comic Standing. It had aired, and I was on Chelsea Lately by then.

But since I was only on Chelsea a couple of months, I thought, “There was no way people were going to know who I am.” And I was shocked. It was awesome to get that kind of support from the lesbian community. It was very validating that my people were proud of me. I had no idea that they watched Chelsea.

AE: What are you looking forward to most this year?
FF:
I don’t think they ever had a host for the weekend, so I’m looking forward to seeing how that unfolds. I’m also looking forward to just hanging out with my friends and meeting new people. It’s the one time you get to meet people from all over the country, or the world; people you would normally not get a chance to meet.

I like seeing girls from small towns that might not have the opportunity to be so open. It’s awesome to watch them go buck wild, to see them go from, “Aw, shucks,” to “Whooo! Pour me a shot!”

AE: What advice would you give to Dinah virgins?
FF:
Wear sunscreen. [Laughs.] Pace yourself. I’ve seen a lot of people peter out at 6 PM and the fun is just starting then. There is no reason to start drinking at 10 AM. Wait a few hours, eat some lunch, then have a cocktail. Take a nap, take a shower. Definitely shower. Because I had a girl sit on my lap once, to take a picture, and she left behind some tanning residue on my shorts.

AE: Are you sure that’s what it was?
FF:
Oh, you dirty bird! That was quite a moment, I have to say. I’m going to take my own advice, because I like a nice shower.

AE: Well, whether you’re hosting events or running around screaming, “Pour me a shot!” partying is hard work.
FF:
I guess the girls just need to let us loose and let off some steam. I was a late bloomer. I didn’t come out until I was 25. And at my first Dinah, I had never seen that many lesbians in one place, holding hands, in bathing suits, kissing and hugging. It was cool but also intimidating!

AE: Speaking of cool and intimating, who’s in this year’s comedy show lineup? How’s that for a segue?
FF:
Jessica Kirson, Karen Williams and Suzanne Westenhoefer.

AE: Karen and Suzanne are going to kill it. And I super love Jessica Kirson. Every second of her act is aggressively hilarious. Are you doing a set or just hosting?
FF: I’ll be the MC. I’ll do a couple minutes up front, and just keep the crowd pumped up and the show going. The comedy show’s about them, not me.

AE: Do you have your outfit for the white party?
FF:
Nobody wants to see a big girl in white pants. I don’t even know if there are white pants that would fit me. I mean, I’ll look like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. So I’m going to go with jeans and a white shirt. Good enough.

AE: Good. Don’t be a conformist, Fortune. Besides, you’re the Lord of The Dinah. You can do whatever the eff you want.
FF:
I could wear neon pants!

AE: Neon is a color, right?
FF:
Yeah.

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