The HBO series “Somebody Somewhere,” which concludes its first season this Sunday, tells the story of Sam, a middle-aged woman who has returned to her hometown in Kansas to look after an ailing sister. The story begins after her sister’s death, with Sam adrift in a state of mourning. A ragtag group of new friends, and singing, helps her cope.
It’s something that Bridget Everett, the actress and cabaret performer who plays Sam, can relate to, up to a certain point. Ms. Everett is also from Kansas, and singing is her thing. But she’s staying put on the Upper West Side, where she has lived since 1997.
Ms. Everett, now 49, is known for her regular appearances at Joe’s Pub. Backed by her band, the Tender Moments, she performs as a Chardonnay-guzzling chanteuse turned blues singer turned quasi-burlesque vamp who buries the faces of audience members in her bosom while sharing tales of heartbreak and longing. Patti LuPone, among others, is an avid fan. Ms. Everett’s next round of shows is scheduled for late March.
BISCUITS, SHOW TUNES About 8, 9 o’clock, I roll into the day, then go back to sleep for an hour and a half. Sunday morning we have family Zoom. My brothers and sister. We started it prepandemic. I make myself a cup of coffee and order myself breakfast. I just discovered Harlem Biscuit Company. They have this chive biscuit with chicken and an egg and gravy. Sometimes I’ll order something on the side, an extra biscuit with a different topping. I don’t eat the whole thing. But it’s nice to see it there.
You know, when you’re talking to your family, you got to do something to relieve the stress. My mom, Freddie, who’s in a nursing home back in my hometown, will log on. For the first three minutes, she’s very fully energized and quickly slips into a catatonic state. She’ll always sing. She loves “Hello, Dolly!” .
FARMER’S MARKET FUNK Even before I walk out of my apartment, I put earbuds in. I try to avoid conversation in general. I’m really into Milton Wright, 1970s funk and soul, rare tracks. The last couple of weeks I was listening to a lot of my own songs, trying to remember them. I grab my tote and walk over to the Museum of Natural History for the farmer’s market. I don’t like crowds, so I try to get in and out fast. I go for She Wolf Bakery. Jessica Seinfeld posted a loaf on Instagram. I got influenced. I get vegetables and heirloom eggs, multicolored, make a promise to myself to eat better, do better, live a better life. What have I turned into? It wasn’t so long ago where it was like, just Two-Buck Chuck and a bag of Wonder.
POPPY LOVE My first dog, Poppy, passed away. She was my best friend and guiding light. She was a former sex worker and shut down when I first met her, but loving. That’s what I want: a dog with a tragic past that wants to love. We need to save each other. I can’t get a dog with a whole bunch of zest for life, because that’s just not where I am. And I can’t not do it again, find that kind of love. So I’m on Petfinder, OC Pom Rescue, SoCal Pom Rescue, Recycled Poms, all of them, looking. It’s an obsession.
QUEEN BEE I’ve got a terrace, a little couch and I put my feet up. I do check-ins with friends. I play Spelling Bee to make my brain work better. I’ve only been Queen Bee twice. I’ll soak up a little vitamin D, nature’s gift. My neighbor’s dog, Arlo, will come over. I love him. He sniffs my crotch, and then we sit together and bask in the sun. Like a boyfriend. He’s some hound mix. He’s big. I prefer small, compact, fluffy.
WALK AND STALK I got to get those steps in. Actually, I put on my Fitbit first thing because I don’t want to not get credit for any movement my body puts itself through. I go to Riverside Park. It’s a walk and stalk. I power up the steps on 83rd Street. My cool-down is to look at the dogs. And on Sunday, you don’t get any better. Everybody’s got their beautiful angels out there. My theory is if you’re going to have a beautiful, fluffy little dog, you have to share that beauty with the world.
PERSONAL TOUCH I squeeze in a mani and pedi over at Cindy’s, my old next-door neighbor. Cindy’s is the closest that I’ve had to human contact in the last two years. As a single person, you know, it’s nice to have somebody squeeze your hands a little. Sometimes I’ll treat myself to spa package B, the hot stones.
A BIG POT Around 4, I go to this butcher shop, Hudson & Charles. They got me into those Rancho Gordo heirloom beans. I make a big pot. I love the smells. I love the ritual. I love knowing that I can do it because before the pandemic, I couldn’t cook. I’m learning.
INSPIRATION As the sun comes down, I set the mood. I have Poppy’s garden on my coffee table, her ashes and her little ceramic paw print, some candles. I give her flowers, something pretty like peonies. “OK, Poppy girl,” I say. “Mommy loves you.” I used to eat dinner at 5 because I’ve fully turned into my mother. Now I push it to 6. I put on documentaries. “Free Solo,” “100 Foot Wave,” any sort of triumph of the human spirit, as I lie on the couch staring at a box of ashes.
CHEZ JIM AND LARRY Once it’s dark out, I’m allowed to have a little tuck-in, a.k.a. a martini. Alternatively, I’m part of a songwriters’ group once a month. You have to write a song and a hook. It’s down at my friends Jim and Larry’s house. Larry is the House of Larréon. He makes all my dresses. It’s where I let my hair down. Otherwise I’m a homebody. I always bring something like a bottle of Ketel One, so we can have “mini marts” — mini martinis. Now that it’s legal, we’ll take an edible.
MINI MART MAGIC And just as any other people in their late 40s, early 50s, we watch YouTube videos and make each other laugh until somebody wets their pants. And guess who that is? We start around 7, which is kind of late for me. It is creeping in on my bedtime, but that’s where the mini marts perk you right up.
Sunday Routine readers can follow Bridget Everett on Twitter or Instagram @bridgeteverett.