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An Open Letter to Amy Schumer: Please Allow Me to Show You a Proper Dump

Hi, A-Schu.

I can call you that, right?

Because you’ve always seemed quite approachable and awesome, so I feel like we’re friends. Not quite BFFs, but close: If I’m being honest, I may or may not have imagined a TMZ story headlined “Troublemaking Trifecta,” in which J-Law, A-Schu and M-Bye were spotted together on the crystal blue waters of Lake Tahoe, riding a jet ski.

Well, J-Law and A-Schu were riding the jet ski. M-Bye was likely on the shore, under a sensible hat, reading a proper book.

(Probably important to note at this juncture: The crystal blue waters of Lake Tahoe are, bt-dubs, only 40 minutes from Reno, Nevada. But more on that later.)

So anyhow. Back to my point.

Today, my one-third of a BFF necklace lost a little of its luster, because you said something that utterly hurt my feelings.

You said the following in a BBC interview: that the worst place you can imagine spending a weekend is “Reno, Nevada,” because it’s “a dump.”

So I thought I’d bring something to your attention. Just in case perhaps you missed this lesson at some point in your early childhood landfill education.

This is a dump:

(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Photo credit: A.K.Karthikeyan (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]
This is Reno, Nevada:

Photo credit: VisitRenoTahoe.com
Photo credit: VisitRenoTahoe.com

Now I can sorta see the source of the confusion. I mean, in both pictures above, there are a shit-ton (pardon the expression) of similarities.

Each one features things. Each is a picture, and each has lots of things. Things and things and things.

And colors, too. All kinds of them.

It’s almost scary how much the things and colors and things in both pictures above are similar because there are things and colors and things in both pictures above.

But that’s really where the similarities end.

Unless…

Maybe there’s a reason for your patently erroneous statement. Maybe it’s not to be taken at face value.

And in light of this realization, I’ve devised six possible scenarios for why you said what you said when you said it.


  1. You’re speaking in code.

We get it. Your brother’s son’s teacher’s aunt’s postal carrier’s tailor’s brother wanted you to send a secret message, so you decided to do him a solid: You’d find a way to slip “Reno, Nevada” into an interview. It was random, but that’s the point: You wanted something arbitrary to commemorate the connection. And while we completely understand someone of your stature needing to talk in code, we just hope that perhaps next time, you consider using “Reno, Nevada” as a response when someone asks you something to the effect of, “If you could name the next Crayola color, what would it be?”

And we concur, that would be an absolutely brilliant name for a Crayola shade. Might we recommend it to accompany one of the many Monet-inspired watercolor hues? You know, like those of the skies over Reno, Nevada:

That's my dad. In my backyard. Total dump, no?
That’s my dad. In my backyard. Total dump, no? (Photo credit: M-Bye)
  1. You’re handing us a well-deserved microphone.

Maybe YOU get it. You know how passionate we Renoites are about our spectacular town. You knew we’d jump to its defense. You are using your celebrity superpowers for good: to amplify our cause — and with an international audience, no less!

Wow! Thank you!

In retrospect, we can see now that you basically thought about it for a moment, and in that instant of reflection, thought to yourself, “Huh. I should totally say ‘Reno, Nevada,’ in order to give the people from Reno, Nevada a chance to post pictures, shout from the rooftops why they love where they live and make everyone else in the entirety of the United States jealous of the year-round awesomeness that is Reno, Nevada.”

Well mission accomplished. And thank you again.

So true to your goal, here are just three quick reasons we love Reno, Nevada:

-> Because this happens every September:

Only 80-100 hot air balloons, flying in the sky above Reno, Nevada. No biggie.
Only 80-100 hot air balloons, flying in the sky above Reno, Nevada. No biggie. (Photo credit: M-Bye)

-> Because Reno is Artown. (Translation: The growing arts scene gets its own month in Reno, and then some — Artown is a year-round love affair for locals.)

-> Because a river runs through it (our city, that is).

By Ken Lund from Reno, Nevada, USA (Truckee River, Reno, Nevada) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)]
By Ken Lund from Reno, Nevada, USA (Truckee River, Reno, Nevada) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)]
  1. You had some bad mahi-mahi for lunch, which caused temporary delirium, which inspired a complete memory lapse, and so the first place that even sprang to mind when you awakened from a food poisoning-inspired momentary loss of consciousness was Reno, Nevada, because you saw the recent Huffington Post article about how awesome it is here.

We’re so sorry for the bad fish. Next time, we’d suggest a nice roasted tomato basil en croûte from our favorite lunch haunt by celebrity chef Mark Estee, Chez Louie, which is located just inside the Nevada Museum of Art.

You guessed it: in Reno, Nevada.

It’s far safer. Trust us.

  1. It’s bizarro day in your personal bizarro world, so you’re saying the exact opposite of what you mean.

In which case, we understand how this:

poop-34629_1280
No photo credit: Because clip art

…is equal to this:

Photo credit: VisitRenoTahoe.com
Photo credit: VisitRenoTahoe.com

Because they’re EXACTLY opposite. Well played, Miyagi. We bow to your mad bizarro comparison ninja skillz.

  1. Your parents were students of Pavlovian conditioning response, and as a fun experiment when you were young, they trained you to say “Reno, Nevada is a dump” every time someone asked you “Where’s the worst place you can ever imagine being for a weekend.”

They likely never thought they’d see the fruits of their painstaking efforts, but it happened today. I’m sure you made them quite proud.

  1. You’re being a little funny.

There it is: the most likely explanation. You’re a comedian, after all. You’re known for your use of raw, biting humor. Your bits are full of paradox and unexpected turns of phrase and nuanced wordplay. It stands to reason you’d be witty and biting and maybe a tad ironic when you talk about Reno, Nevada as anything other than awesome.

Awww, we get it now. Haha LOL LMFAO. Thanks for the ab workout while we enjoyed the joke.


And there you have it. So whatever the reason, please know this: I still love you like a sister. Even though half a million people have watched that clip on the BBC’s Facebook page in the last 12 hours.

No biggie.

Because as previously mentioned, Reno, Nevada is full of awesomeness. And forgiveness. And love — even for those who dump on us.

In other words: even for you, A-Schu.

And in case you’re interested, I’m extending to you a personal and open invitation to Reno, Nevada (or to the close-by, crystal blue waters of Lake Tahoe).

You bring the jet ski and J-Law; I’ll bring the sensible hat and proper book.

XOXO,

M-Bye

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About Mikalee Byerman

Mikalee Byerman
When Mikalee Byerman's decade-long first marriage ended with a message inscribed on a brick — a literal brick — the writer knew she had crazy fodder for a story about the symbolism of bricks, blindsides and a universe that likes to fuck with her. Taking cues from her “you-can’t-make-this-shit-up” misfortune, the potty-mouthed freelance writer is documenting her tongue-in-cheek take on life through her highly controversial blog, Me 2.0, which has been featured on the Huffington Post and TIME Magazine's websites. Her writing also has appeared in Ladies’ Home Journal, Southwest Spirit Magazine and Alaska Airlines Magazine. Her first book — 100 Things to Do in Reno Before You Die — is due out in Spring 2017 (Reedy Press). During the day, she is a communication strategist for the Estipona Group. Oh yeah, and she's also known as "Mom" to two crazy-cool teens and "Mommy" to one plain-crazy toddler.

17 comments

  1. I loved your article!

  2. Hilarious post! I read somewhere that GSR didn’t treat her that well and did a crappy job on her show when she was here. Perhaps it was a reflection on that. Her comments did sting! Hopefully, she’ll see the error of her ways and will be poppin’ a squat on that jet ski soon. 😉

  3. I so wanted to reply to her using the foul language she loves (and so, for that matter, do I), but you addressed it so better. Thanks for sticking up for us!

    • Mikalee Byerman

      I’m actually fairly surprised at my own lack of potty mouth in this post — that’s usually not my style! But I think I decided to try to catch flies with honey. The ones buzzing around the dump, obviously. 😉

  4. Loved your article! Is there a way to pre-order your new book?

    • Mikalee Byerman

      This is about the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me: You seriously want to buy my book?!?! Pardon me while I have a total Sally-Field-at-the-Oscars-moment. I’m sure there will be pre-orders, but the publisher hasn’t quite rolled that out yet. If you connect with me on Facebook, I’ll keep y’all posted there. Or, since I’ll be framing this quote, I’ll have your name, and I can reach out once I hear from the publisher that we’re good to go on pre-orders. Thank you for making my day, Susan! 🙂

  5. Hollywood’s war against Reno Nv continues. This is based on a true story about a Canadian mining company called Bre-X, who falsified their gold findings. Which brought them from a penny stock to a company worth 6 Billion.

    But in this movie the company resides in Reno and the company is called Washoe mining. The people making this movie have gone out of their way to single out Reno. In the past 20 years Reno is consistently the butt of jokes and b is presented as the worst of the worst of America. I’m quite sick of it.

    Read the true story here; https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bre-X

  6. Ask anyone that was at her show at the GSR in 2015. It was a complete joke. Staff talking during the performance and knocking things over. Tickets sold 2-3 times over. Things falling apart on stage. Hecklers in the audience telling her she’s a woman and not funny. The chairs for the show were all zip tied together making it nice and uncomfortable. She even said at the end of her performance that “You guys have been awesome but I will never come here again”

    *I* was embarrassed about the show. I tweeted afterwards, that we loved her performance but were sorry the GSR did such a terrible job. She acknowledged/liked the tweet because it was, for lack of a better term, a shit show at the GSR.

    She doesn’t know about ArtTown, there was no secret code and she didn’t eat anything bad. She came to our town and the GSR crapped on her performance.

    Sorry, it really is that simple.

    • The host hotel didn’t treat her like an A-lister, which she is not, so her response is to sh*t on the entire city? Seems reasonable, if you’re a petulant brat and your star is fading. The GSR may not have lived up to her lofty standards but she deserves scorn for her absurd attack on our community. Of all the places in the world she thinks Reno would be the worst place to spend a weekend? I mean seriously, she really isn’t funny if that was comedy.

      • Rory,

        Were you there? The GSR treated the GUESTS like crap. Chairs were ziptied together making it uncomfortable. Seats were sold 2-3 times over; all the seats around us were sold a 2-3 times with everyone showing up with the same tickets, same seats. After being yelled at by staff and asked to move we tried to talk to anyone at the GSR about the tickets and they didn’t reach out or care. There was no apology. The GSR staff were TALKING DURING THE PERFORMANCE and knocking things over. A heckler in the crowd decided to tell her that she wasn’t funny because she was a woman and not attractive.

        It’s not that she wasn’t treated like an A-lister. She was here for less than 24 hours and in that time both the business here and people in the crowd gave her her only taste of Reno.

        I love Reno and have lived here a long time. I don’t blame her for her response. If my only experience here was getting shit on, I wouldn’t want to come back either.

        • I think that’s the point though. That was her only experience with Reno. Her response should have been the GSR in Reno, Nevada. Not the entire community.

    • Mikalee Byerman

      For the record: I had a feeling it was that simple. And I really didn’t believe in the secret code or food poisoning angles. I just wish she would give us another shot, instead of summarily dismissing all that is good and awesome and spectacular about our city.

  7. Are you people serious? I was in Reno 6 years ago. Going on a road trip. Figured we had to check out Reno. It was a DUMP!!! Nothing was open. Most places were boarded up. There is nothing left. I’m sure it has nice sunsets but so does my town in BC. The town is dead. Get over it and move on.

    • Mikalee Byerman

      Wow. OK now. Because this doesn’t even REMOTELY sound like my hometown of Reno, Nevada, I did some research. Did you know: There are 12 places named “Reno” in America. Additionally, there are two Renos in Italy, two in Indonesia and one in Australia. So there’s the explanation for the confusion! Now given that you said you were on a road trip, I’m going to assume you were in the U.S. Therefore, you must have been in Reno, Indiana. Population 523. Thus the “boarded up” locations. Honestly, our town is thriving, our communities rich and our culture vibrant. I hope you come for a visit! 🙂

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