No, Really! He was a Garbageman!

Maureen Langan, comedian, in the Lower East Side in New York City, New York.

People ask if I am really the Daughter Of A Garbageman. I am. If I were going to have a fake father, he would be a wealthy doctor, an astronaut, maybe a successful lawyer.

And why do I call him a “garbageman” instead of a “sanitation worker?”

When I was in third grade, my teacher, Mrs. Cohen, was scolding the boys for slacking off. She shouted, “Do you want to grow up to be garbagemen?” I was mortified. Why was she using my father as the example of the loser? That was not a lone example. People have suggested that I say he drives a truck, not a garbage truck. Others have remarked, “Your dad is a garbageman? But you are so smart.”

Insane!

There was shame around being a garbageman. My own father carried that shame calling himself names that upset me. So I decided to rip the negative connotation from the title, spin it, flip it, and give the word, and the people behind that word, the respect they deserve. Whatever term you want to use, my father hauled trash from your house into the back of a truck so his six kids could have a dental plan. That’s what I respect. He liked to call himself as a magician because he’s a man who made your garbage disappear. His name is Hughie, and he is very funny.

The show is equally about my blessed Irish immigrant mother, a woman who wouldn’t let me play with Barbie dolls because they had boobs. I should have called the show Daughter Of A Garbageman and an Immigrant, but the posters were already printed.



Maureen Langan’s Daughter of a Garbageman closes its run this weekend at The Marsh SF. Thursday and Friday at 8pm. Saturday at 5:30. Tickets and more info through the link below.

MAUREEN LANGAN is a broadcast journalist turned standup comic and radio talk show host. She has performed on Broadway with Rosie O’Donnell and has opened for Steven Wright, Dennis Miller, Joy Behar, and Gladys Knight. She’s been featured on HBO, Gotham Live, and is a regular at Carolines on Broadway. She has performed at festivals in Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, Ireland, and the UK.

MAUREEN LANGAN is a broadcast journalist turned standup comic and radio talk show host. She has performed on Broadway with Rosie O’Donnell and has opened for Steven Wright, Dennis Miller, Joy Behar, and Gladys Knight. She’s been featured on HBO, Gotham Live, and is a regular at Carolines on Broadway. She has performed at festivals in Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, Ireland, and the UK.

Also at The Marsh