Aloha Hip Hapa Homeez! Tell me if you agree or not, but haven’t you experienced moments when you’ve felt like the whole issue of race was just an unbearable burden? You know, those times when you have to explain to a so-called mono-racial person “what you are”. Or, how about when curiosity gets the best of a stranger and they demand you explain to them in detail what it’s like being mixed? Most of the time, I don’t mind answering questions if it’s for genuine educational purposes, but if it’s only to entertain someone I’ll never see again, I question his or her motive.
In any case, those are the times during our multiethnic experience that we really need to keep our sense of humor. This week’s Hip Hapa Homee has an incredible one! Meet comedian Ian Clark. The first time Your Hip Hapa watched his video about being mixed, she laughed so hard yet, at the same time, was completely captivated. The truth, it seems, is not only funny but entrancing, too.
Check out Ian here: http://ianclarkonline.com/
And, in the photos below.
Q: What’s a nice mixed-race guy like you doing being a comedy star, and how did you start?
A: I remember making a phony phone call at four. So I guess I was born with it. I loved anything funny as a kid—from TV to films to MAD magazine. It just became a part of who I was as a person. Plus, when you’re laughing, you’re happy. And, I think happiness is the goal of life.
Q: Who are your parents, and how did you grow up?
A: My mom, Linda, is Swedish American and my dad, James, is African American. I grew up in Oak Park Illinois, right outside of Chicago. My folks raised me to just be myself. I never had issues with race until high school--where I could never be black enough, and was always too white. But it taught me that race, in all of its forms, is stupid. We are all humans, and have different color skin the same way we have different eye and hair color. The brain holds your identity, not your “race”.
Q: You do a variety of comedy shows--onstage, on the Internet, etc. Any preference? And, why?
A: I like filming things the best. It’s always there for people to enjoy at another date. Stand-up is wonderful in its own way because of the intimacy with the audience. So maybe my real answer would be a film of me doing stand-up.
Q: We Hip Hapa Homeez first became aware of you through your It's Good To Be Mixed video about the pros of being multiethnic. Since then, you're not as focused on race in your comedy shows. Is there a reason?
A: I found out that race is one of humans’ mental illnesses. It makes no sense to judge a person on the color of their skin. I’m not even talking about the moral argument. Even if you lack morals, it’s stupid. It would seem stupid to say you know something about a person based on eye color, but we do it with skin color. I will address these issues soon in my work. I just needed some time to figure out how to sell the idea.
Q: Do you envision a time when the world will truly be so-called colorblind?
A: Yes, I think we are close. The incentive to hold onto racist views diminishes everyday. And, today’s kids don’t seem to care.
Q: How do you feel comedy fits in with hot political topics?
A: I think it helps people see through the B.S.
Q: What are your future plans with your comedy act?
A: To keep them laughing.
Mahalo nui loa, Ian! Listen up, Hip Hapa Homeez. The Watermelon Sushi film has a new producer, Robert Lee Taylor, so check us out and “like” our Facebook fan page. While you’re there, please join our Hip Hapa Homeez group page where we post the latest news about multiethnic and trans-racial adoptee communities. Also, please show your support by purchasing a Hapa*Teez t-shirt, which will help get our film produced and give you a rear crawl credit, too. Robert and Your Hip Hapa have also launched a new YouTube show called Sexy Voices of Hollywood. Check us out at our Sexy Voices of Hollywood Facebook fan page.
Until we touch screens again, I will always be…
Your Hip Hapa,