Valentine’s Day is over—but Vagina, or rather V-Day, is yet to come! Created in 1996 by Obie-winning playwright Eve Ensler, the Vagina Monologues features episodic stories told by women of all ages about, yes, their vaginas, and back in 1998 the show spawned an almost-nationally recognized annual anti-violence awareness week unashamedly called V-Day. The uterine monologues are both comic and tragic—tales of a vagina’s first period, an angry vagina that’s tired of being dusted with powders, douched with spring blossoms and plugged up with tampons, a lesbian vagina and her loves, vaginas that have been attacked, and vaginas that have given birth—and all of them get to the clitoral heart of one mantra: vaginas are not only powerful, they’re downright dangerous. But not how you think.
The point of all this vagi-talk is both to bring attention to the much-maligned (and these days butchered by Mohawks or completely shaven) vagina and to raise funds for nonprofit orgs that try to end violence against women and girls. Usually, the production has a celebrity cast, as well, which I guess makes some women breathe easier as they can focus on “going to see that Whoopi Goldberg play” instead of “that one about all of our vaginas”—although a Goldberg/vagina combination would definitely send me MIA. Still, while there are no stars studding this cast, it’s a legendary show that you must eventually be initiated by. Don’t worry—it’ll be good for you. It’ll be good for your vagina. You might even find the V-word losing a pinch of negative stigma. After all, you’ve just managed to read it 13 times and you haven’t fainted or yakked. Have you? (Stacy Davies)
The Vagina Monologues at UCR, Lecture Hall/Life Science 1500 Bldg., (951) 827-4331; www.events.ucr.edu. Sunday, 5PM; Wednesday, 8PM, $12-$15 (proceeds benefit the Riverside Area Rape Crisis Center and MODEMU). Parking $5.