Ali Wong is still promoting Always Be My Maybe, which I enjoyed. I also like that it’s being heralded for its representation and for breaking down stereotypes. Ali is also helping break down stereotypes for pregnant women, as she was pregnant during her two stand-up specials. Ali wore a fitted, black and white striped H&M dress while performing seven months pregnant for her special, Baby Cobra. She pointed out that male comics never took a break from comedy when they had kids, but women comics tended to disappear while pregnant. Ali wanted to combat that by showing herself very pregnant and very capable of doing her job well. She was so successful that the Smithsonian asked for the dress to put in the Museum of American History.
What she told Jimmy about the dress was:
What happened to that dress?
I still have it but the Smithsonian asked me to donate it to the National Museum of American History. For real, real. But I said no because it’s discontinued and I wanted to save it for my daughter. But then I had two (daughters) and there’s only one of the dress and I was like, I don’t want them to fight over the dress, so… And it would be an honor to have that dress at that museum.
That’s quite an honor, to have something you wore in the Smithsonian
It is an honor and when they asked me and I decided to give it to them, I think a lot about my dad because he grew up in this one-bedroom apartment in Chinatown with no running water. And he worked his @$$ off to study and become this anesthesiologist to provide the best life possible for me and my siblings. And even when I was struggling, he was so supportive. He would come to – not so well attended shows – and I’d announce, “oh, my dad is here,” after doing a really filthy joke, it would be good to say, “my dad is here!” And he would stand up and go like this (pumps arms in victory) and he would look like he just won the Indy 500. Or concurred Mt. Everest.
And then when he died, I was still struggling and I think about him seeing that costume in the Smithsonian – he would probably be outside that museum every day, just going like (pumps arms in victory)
There is a lot in this story that got to me. Ali was pregnant with Mari during Baby Cobra (the striped dress) and pregnant with Nikki in Hard Knock Wife (leopard print). When she was on Ellen, she said that Mari identifies herself and Nikki by what ‘animal’ Ali was wearing during each special (“I’m the Zebra and Nikki’s the leopard.”) So I get why Ali wanted to hang on to the dress for her girls. But Mari’s cool factor will go up by 1000% when she’s on her school trip to the Smithsonian and she can point to …read more