Monday, December 23, 2013

The Best Urban Erma Posts of 2013!

Dear Urban Erma Fans, 

Thank you so much for reading, enjoying, commenting, and sharing my posts this year. It was hard to choose, but here are my favorites. I hope they're yours too. Have a happy, healthy and prosperous 2014. - Leighann Lord (The Urban Erma).

  1. Sorta Senior Moments: BLOG | PODCAST |VIDEO
  2. The Library It's Not Just Books BLOG | PODCAST | VIDEO
  3. Dresser Drawer Time Machine BLOG | PODCAST
  4. Little Miss, Young Miss, Old Miss BLOG | PODCAST
  5. Make Time to Waste Time BLOG | PODCAST
  6. Real-Life Math Problem BLOG | PODCAST
  7. Happy Black Men BLOG | PODCAST
  8. Rob Base is Not Dead BLOG | PODCAST | VIDEO
  9. Hi Tech Huxtables BLOG | PODCAST |
  10. Going Green and Seeing Red BLOG | PODCAST | VIDEO
  11. Borg Going to Budget BLOG | PODCAST
  12. My Bank, The Vendor and Me BLOG | PODCAST

The Urban Erma, the longest running column on, was created and written by stand-up comedian Leighann LordListen to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher RadioWatch the video edition on YouTube.comIf you enjoy The Urban Erma please leave a comment, Like it on Facebook, follow on Twitter, And share it with your friends. (Share it with people who are not your friends and maybe they will be.) Get her free e-books of The Great Spanx Experiment and Sometimes I Wish Facebook Had a Hate Button. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Fine Ass Forehead – A Different Kind of Beautiful Mind

Last night a man said to me, “You have a very beautiful forehead.” Those words in that combination were so unexpected that I wasn’t sure how to respond. I mean, what could I say but thank you? I should’ve been mildly uncomfortable as the man stood there recklessly eyeballing my frontal lobe and trying to explain the context for his remark. Admittedly inebriated, he told me about a study that correlated the shape of a woman’s forehead with her fertility. Well that makes sense. And it explains all the imaginary children I have; three daughters and one son. Besides, you know what they say: big head, big womb.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Childhood in a Bag, A Not So Trivial Pursuit*

* Republished from The Urban Erma, March 2011
A close friend recently hosted a “Game Night” and all of us who attended were charged with bringing our favorites. Rising to the challenge, I brought a goodie bag full of old school: dominoes, cloth and wire jump ropes for Double Dutch, and a sack full of classic metal jacks. You heard me. Jacks! Yeah, I took it there. You can’t get metal jacks anymore. You see, now we care about children choking on small metal objects, in my generation not so much. I’m not saying parents ate their young back then, but they didn’t see the need to over protect us from toys made with lead, asbestos, mercury, or depleted uranium.

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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Taken for a Ride

Image courtesy of Damian Brandon/
The Big Named Car Service That Advertises on TV that I normally use recently doubled their price for a trip to the airport so I called The Small Local Neighborhood Car Service instead. Spoiler alert: It was a mistake.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Brazilian Wax On, Wax Off

Image courtesy of
A popular joke in my act is about my first-ever Brazilian wax being done by A Very Angry Russian Woman who – as she’s ripping off the strips of cloth and my dignity – says to me: “In my country, I was gynecologist.” She didn’t really say that but humor is born out of pain. And getting a Brazilian wax was an excruciating and yet instructive experience.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

My Bank, The Vendor, and Me

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles

I toyed with naming names but The Who isn’t as important as The What: piss poor customer service from corporations that should know better. But for clarity let’s call the relevant players My Bank, The Vendor, and Me.
I paid a bill online but due to a website error I was double billed. I contacted My Bank and they said there was nothing they could do. An electronic payment is not like a check. You can’t request a stop payment. Once the funds are approved it’s out of their hands. I called The Vendor and they said there was nothing they could do either, because they did not yet “see” the money in their system and most likely wouldn’t for up to 72 hours. And poof just like that over $1,000 of my money was gone off into the ether. 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

My Brief Thoughts About Kenan & Saturday Night Live

Dear Reader, I wrote this post a few weeks ago and it appeared on my website and The Huffington Post. I share it with you here and I hope you'll find it interesting. 

What? No Binders Full of Black Women?

As a black female comedian I’ve been asked to comment on Kenan Thompson’s recent statement about why there are no black women in the cast of Saturday Night Live. Since no one is going to ask me about the government shut down, the debt ceiling, or why an entire season of the BBC show, Luther, is only four episodes long I will share my brief thoughts on Kenan.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Library: It's Not Just Books

I casually mentioned that I was at The Library the other day and the person I was chatting with looked at me and said, “The library? Why?” They seemed genuinely surprised that I would voluntarily go. I could see they thought The Library was somewhere you went as a kid only because somebody made you. My conversation companion said, “Can’t you just download books now?” Of course I can, but The Library is not just books.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Four Eyes Revisited

Back in June I posted a story called "Hey, Four Eyes" about the joys of growing up wearing glasses and how the taunts from childhood bullies still haunt me. It has even affected my ability to comfortably wear my glasses in public and on-stage. Well, I don't know why but last Thursday I decided to stop letting the bullies win. And I've been wearing my glasses on stage for SIX SHOWS and counting, in no small part due to the love and support I've received from friends and fans on Facebook. I hope you enjoy the above post and comments. (Click HERE to listen to the Original Podcast!)

The Urban Erma, the longest running column on, was created and written by stand-up comedian Leighann LordListen to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher RadioWatch the video edition on YouTube.comIf you enjoy The Urban Erma please leave a comment, Like it on Facebook, follow on Twitter, And share it with your friends. (Share it with people who are not your friends and maybe they will be.) Get her free e-books of The Great Spanx Experiment and Sometimes I Wish Facebook Had a Hate Button. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Dresser Drawer Time Machine

Image courtesy of artur84
Human beings dream of the type of time travel we see in the movies – well, maybe not in Primer. That film succeeded in making time travel look complicated, dreary, and so not sexy. Although we don’t yet have a machine, drug, or app to traipse up and down the timeline at will, we can travel to the past through memory. I took such a trip the other day when I walked into my parent’s bedroom, saw my Mom cleaning out her dresser drawers, and suddenly I was six-years-old again.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Compliments from Strangers: Fav, Poke, Endorse, Repeat

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles
When I was a kid I thought adults had all the answers. Then I grew up and realized that they, we, don’t know anything. We’re all making it up as we go along. Welcome to life. Welcome to social media.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Grown Folks Double Dutch (with VIDEO!)

I learned how to jump Double Dutch late in life. By late I mean 12-years old. In the hood, that’s way late. If that were old enough to drive a car it would’ve qualified me for handicapped parking. It’s not my fault. As a kid I listened to a lot of AM radio and consequently didn’t know how to keep a beat. You need rhythm to jump Double Dutch or the rope will literally trip you up.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Dear Facebook, WTF?

I’ve been getting a lot Facebook messages lately from young single women of color who desperately want to be my friend: Dora, Rosalind, Baha, Kate... It’s like the bad old days of penis enlargement emails and Nigerian royalty inheritance scams.  Why is this happening? Is the Facebook Privacy & Security team on vacation? Oh, right: What privacy and security? I forgot that free social networking companies are in the business violating my privacy and selling my security to the highest bidder.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I Don't Do Fun, I Do Comedy!

Murph & Ray Garvey  - NY Daily News
So, I’m casually flipping through The New York Daily News last week when I saw an old familiar face: Ray Garvey. The headline read: “‘Fame’ for Brooklyn’s ‘great guy’: Athlete, cop, actor, funnyman.” Ray was being posthumously inducted into the Brooklyn Softball Hall of Fame. He was only 52-years-old when he died from cancer. Funny, I never thought I’d get to the point in my life when the phrase “only 52” would come out of my mouth. As my eyes welled up with tears I thought: Has Ray really been gone for three years? I remember going to the wake and it seemed like a New York City comedy industry Who’s Who. It was only fitting. Not only did Ray have many friends but he’d also given opportunities to a lot of people. I was one of them.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Harriet Tubman Sex Tape? Say What, Now?

Harriet Tubman
Russell Simmons’ YouTube channel, All Def Digital, posted a video called the “Harriet Tubman Sex Tape.” When this story first flashed across my newsfeed I was pretty sure I hadn't read it right. The words were English but they just didn't make any sense. Harriet Tubman Sex Tape? What? You can see how these words in such close and unexpected proximity can fog the mind.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Real Life Math Problem; A Lesson Over Coffee at Dunkin Donuts

Image courtesy of nattavut
Okay, let me set the scene. I’m at the Dunkin Donuts drive-thru. I’ve ordered a medium hot coffee, light, and sweet.  It came to $2.16. I hand the kid $3.00. As he’s making change I find 20 cents (two dimes) and try to give it to him. He looks at me in a panic – my receipt already in his hand – shakes his head, and says: “No, it’s too late.”

I say, “No. No it isn’t.”

He says, “Okay” and hands me 75 cents. 


Now it’s my turn to panic. Not because he gave me the wrong change but because he knew it was wrong and had no idea how to fix it. None. I could see it in his face. <~ Tweet This!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Borg on a Budget

Image courtesy of
imagerymajestic at

New York City has toughened its hands-free driving laws. Now the penalty for fondling your phone while driving is five points on your license and up to $400 in fines. So, this was not the best time for my Bluetooth earpiece to break.  Well technically it still works. What broke is the plastic part that fits around your ear to hold the device in place. I don’t mean to sound all conspiracy theory but I think the manufacturers hope the flimsy part breaks so you’ll buy a brand new earpiece. They’re banking that most people won’t go through the trouble of trying replace the part that loops around their ears. What the hell is that part even called?

Click Here for the Podcast  / (And hear me read this post to you!)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What Did You Think of the Zimmerman Verdict?

People have asked me what I thought about The George Zimmerman Verdict. What is there to think? A Black child is dead and nobody’s going to jail for it. It’s not exactly what I would call a feel good moment. At first I thought they wanted my personal opinion about the case. They didn’t. They wanted comedic commentary, some hint of humor that might help the healing begin. Translation: Hey Leighann, got jokes?

(That's right. I read my blog to you and you'll love it.)

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Make Time to Waste Time

I can think of no bigger waste of time then going to see a live baseball game. To me it’s just grown men sweating in public. Yes, I know this is blasphemy especially when one lives in one of the greatest baseball cities on earth. We’ve got the Mets, the Yankees, and some (and by some I mean anyone over the age of 70) will argue that New York is still the spiritual home of the Dodgers. I know this. And I’m sorry. I’m just not that into it. So what was I doing sitting behind home plate at a minor league, Brooklyn Cyclones game? Chalk it up to the things we do for love.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

What Do You Tip for Bad Service?

© Norgen | Dreamstime Stock Photos
& Stock Free Images
You know the dining experience is not going well when you have to get up and get your own silverware. Let me be clear: I am not nor I have I ever been a waitress. I’m pretty sure if you put an order pad in my hand and said, “Go!” I would be a disaster. I do not have the temperament. At best somebody is getting cussed out. At worst somebody is going to jail. I have a lot of respect for the folks out there hustling food and drink with a smile. I have received service so outstanding that I couldn’t tip enough. And then there was last Friday night.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Flashback: Def Comedy Jam

A fan contacted me on Twitter (thank you @KillahCam52) to say that he was watching me on Def Comedy Jam. It inspired me reach back into my archives and dig out this photo taken during the taping oh so many moons ago.

Photo Facts

What:    Taping of Def Comedy All Star Jam
When:   November 1995
Where:  Academy Theatre, NYC

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Hey, Four Eyes!


I started wearing glasses at the age of three. I hated them so much I would take them off and hide them in my mom’s clothes dryer; a front-loader that was the perfect height for a disgruntled toddler. When I did wear my glasses, I never cleaned them. Unable to see through the filthy lenses, the glasses would slip down to the tip of my nose and I’d peer out over the top of the frames, which made me look like a little old lady. This might explain why my maternal grandfather’s nickname for me was, Grandma.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Happy Father’s Day: Little Miss, Young Miss, Old Miss

When the man walked in every woman’s head simultaneously turned to look at him like we were Stepford-Children of the Corn. It’s unusual to see a man in Claire’s. (Oh, you don’t know what Claire’s is? Then you don’t have a pre-pubescent girl in your life. Well, technically I don’t either, but I used to be one and thus never lost my taste for girly-girl accessories on the cheap.) Even male employees are rare at Claire’s. And the ones they do have don’t usually dress in business suits. We women said nothing out loud but I’m sure our Borg collective thought was: “What are you doing here, Sir? Are you lost?”

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Going Green and Seeing Red

This has probably happened to you too. In fact I know it has. I stuck my hands underneath the automatic faucet in a public bathroom. It’s automatic now because we can’t be trusted on our ownsome to turn on the water, run it at the right speed and temperature, and then turn it off. I’m ever so grateful that someone has put the power of technology behind taking that heavy burden off my mind. My nights now are ever so restful. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The High Tech Huxtables

Image courtesy of digitalart 
Here’s a 21st century Norman Rockwell moment for you: I was sitting on the couch in between my parents: me with an iPhone, my Mom with an iPad, and my Dad with an iPod.  How I wish I’d gotten a picture of this. What a holiday card that would’ve made. We looked like the high-tech Huxtables. What had happened was…

Click HERE to listen to the audio version of this post!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

In Line, On Line, Off Line

If you have strong feelings about whether we stand in line or on line then you may not want to read this. But I think you’re up to the challenge. I think you can handle me using the terms interchangeably, letting colloquial usage win over grammatical correctness. Welcome: This is how a former English major walks on the wild side.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

May the Fourth Be With You

I got an email from someone I didn’t know telling me that Martin’s memorial service would be on Saturday. Martin? Martin who? But deep down I knew. I just didn’t want to know. I emailed back and said, “I know several people named Martin. Can you give me a last name?” This was a tad disingenuous. Chalk it up to preemptive denial. There are only four Martins in my address book and I can’t remember who three of them are. The fourth Martin? He is unforgettable.


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

In Search of The Black Female Superhero

Happy Mothers Day, Mom. I Love You

Back in the day I was a big fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Xena: The Warrior Princess. My friends knew not to call me when those shows were on. I’d be ensconced in front of the TV watching Buffy and the Scoobies patrol the Sunny Dale Hell Mouth. And who, I ask you who was more bad ass than Lucy Lawless? Perhaps in her case I’m just biased towards women with alliterative names. Lucy Lawless. Leighann Lord. You see, I can always find a way to make it all about me. That’s my gift; my personal superpower if you will. Pardon me while I put on my cape.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Evolve or Die

Image courtesy of Master isolated 

I got a chance many years ago to work with one of my favorite political comedians, Barry Crimmins. It was an honor. I had gotten ahold of his comedy tape, Don’t Shoot the Messenger (you heard me, I said tape) and damn near wore it out. Wore it out I tell you. The pleasure of working with him was compounded by the fact that he was a nice guy who didn’t mind talking to a comedy neophyte. We were having a lovely conversation until I innocently asked that if he’d started in comedy clubs, why didn’t he play there more now?


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Lights, Camera, Breakdown

Thanks for reading The Urban Erma. You can subscribe to the blogcast (yes, I made up this word) FREE on iTunes. And, in case you were wondering, in addition to blogging I am also an amazing stand-up comedian. I do "Thinking Cap Comedy." Basically, if comedy were music, I'd be Jazz. Want to see a show? Check out my schedule at @