Disc jockey Geno Michellini, host of KLOS-FM’s “5 O’Clock Funnies,” has dubbed comedian Andrea Walker “the blonde with an attitude.”
How much attitude?
“I hate stereotypes,” Walker says in her act. “People think just because I have blond hair I’m a bitch; I was a bitch when I was a brunette.”
Yet Walker, who is appearing at the Brea Improv through Sunday, does admit that being a blonde presents its share of problems.
“Guys come up to me and they’re like, ‘You’ve got blue eyes, blond hair. You probably have the brains of a cheerleader. I’m like, ‘I wish, ' " she says, fending off those kinds of guys by twirling a blond curl with her fingers and becoming the personification of Blond Valley Girl:
“You know, I wanted to be a cheerleader. But there was just so much spelling. . . . The next year they’re like, ‘2-4-6-8!’ Oh, God, you mean there’s math too?”
As far as Walker is concerned, the “blonde with an attitude” appellation is on the money.
“That’s because I’m outspoken,” she said in an interview. “I’m not a nice, friendly girl comic. Someone once said I was like sugar-coated bullets or a perfumed eviction notice.”
Indeed, here’s Walker on:
* Divorce: “You know, the toughest part of getting a divorce is telling your kids, because they hear you scream and yell at each other all the time: ‘Get out of this house! I hate your guts!’. . . . Then you gotta go to your kids: ‘You know Mommy and Daddy really love each other very much. But we just thought it would be better for everyone if Daddy moved to a little tenement building in Bellflower.”
* Flirting on the freeway (“a great way to meet men”): “You can’t help it because you’re driving along and you think you see the man of your dreams. Well, not actually the man, but the car he would have. . . .”
And about that Jehovah’s Witness who knocked on her door at 6 in the morning, asking “Do you know God?” Walker responded:
“This is L.A. I don’t even know my neighbors. “
A Fresno native, Walker moved to Los Angeles and attended UCLA on a performing arts scholarship, got married, had two children. After her 1989 divorce, she started going to comedy clubs and finally began thinking, “I could do this.”
Walker didn’t assume her “blonde with an attitude” stage persona by design.
“It kind of evolved because when you’re coming up, you’re not in nice clubs like the Improv,” she said. “You’re playing bars and stuff and you’re in a rowdier atmosphere and you have to have an aggressive demeanor to be able to shut up some biker guy in the back.”
Comedy seems to have been the right career at the right time. In only 2 1/2 years she has moved up from opening act to being a strong middle act who, thanks to her memorable comic persona, is well on her way to headliner status.
What has given her career momentum, Walker believes, is that her material reflects her life.
“That’s been the main thing; I have something to talk about,” she said. “You have to have enough negative experiences in your life to force you to find the lighter side of it. I don’t think I really was necessarily a funny person all my life--I think I just had had enough. You are pushed to the edge and you have to laugh . . . or go on welfare, that type of thing.”
In her act, Walker said, “I try to point out things that I think are hypocritical--to find the thing that goes against what everybody thinks.”
Take animal rights, for example:
“I read this and it’s true: They put the ground-up bones of cats and dogs in our shampoos. And that’s what they are referring to when they say ‘protein enriched.’ Which is gross. . . . But it does give new meaning to the phrase, ‘Gee, your hair looks fluffy.’ ”
The point, Walker says, “is animal rights is a little hypocritical. Everybody is against fur coats now, but you can wear leather. I asked this man, ‘Why is it OK to wear leather if you can’t wear fur?’ And he said, ‘Because we kill the cow to eat it, and the leather’s just a byproduct.’
“And I said, ‘Well then, we don’t need to change what we’re wearing, we need to eat better-looking animals. I could go for a little mink burger right now. . . . Or how about a chinchilla fajita?’ ”
Although her act appeals to both men and women, Walker is developing a growing contingent of female fans who appreciate her unconventional comments on marriage, divorce and being a single mother. It’s the women who come up to talk to her after a show.
“I’m a mouthpiece for them,” she said. “I said all the bad things they thought about while they were busy people-pleasing, and I get a good feeling out of that. And I always say to them, ‘You should speak up in life.’ ”
Walker certainly does.
“Other mothers bug me because they’re always bragging about how bonded they are with their children,” she says. “You know, they’re like, ‘When Johnny fell down at the park, I could hear him crying. Instantly, I could recognize it was my son.’
“I’m like, ‘Oh, God I’m deformed because I can’t recognize my kid’s crying. Not even when it’s just us in the car. . . . Unless the trunk’s open.’ I’m like, ‘What station is this? Does Yoko Ono have a new record out?’ ”
Who: Andrea Walker.
When: Thursday, Oct. 31, and Sunday, Nov. 3, at 8:30 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 1, at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 2, at 8 and 10:30 p.m.
Where: The Improv, 945 E. Birch St., Brea.
Whereabouts: Take the Lambert Road exit off the Orange (57) Freeway and go west. Turn left on State College Boulevard and right on Birch Street. The Improv is in the Brea Marketplace, across from the Brea Mall.
Wherewithal: $7 to $10.
Where to Call: (714) 529-7878.