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interview

Widowed By Covid: Interview With Comedian Rich Kiamco

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Today my guest is stand-up comedian Rich Kiamco who you may recognize from Bravo’s Queer Eye For The Straight Guy, Netflix in the Buzzfeed’s “Follow This,” and the Broadway Comedy Club, just to name a few things from his impressive resume. Rich’s partner Sandy Gunar was diagnosed with covid on February 7th 2021 and passed away on March 16th, just 19 days ago from when we chatted.
We chatted about being afraid to fall in love with someone who might die in the future, being codependent with your partner, dating as a gay man before grindr on Edwina (“I’m ancient!”), having enough self-love and self-loathing to eat well, Dolph Lundgren (the Soviet boxer from Rocky), how Rich met Sandy (several times!) before they finally got together, how rebounding is like being on the Titanic, how past traumas prime you for widowhood, blaming yourself for your partner’s death, being descended from trauma survivors (Rich’s parents lived in the Philippines during the Japanese occupation during World War II), PTSD infused gratitude, incorporating grief into your comedy, using wit for self-preservation (particularly as a gay kid in high school), and doing comedy on zoom during covid.


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