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Scared Skinny

By Christina Ku
CHEWING THE FAT Mary Dimino in the Fringe show Scared Skinny - christine miller

Written by Mary Dimino

Directed by
Christine Renee Miller

Tom Noonan’s
Paradise Factory

64 East 4th Street

Part of FringeNYC 2010

All great and good things on God’s good earth come to those who are skinny, remarks Mary Dimino, the writer/actress of . Dimino explores this train of thought throughout her autobiographical sketch, reflecting on her lifelong struggle with self-acceptance and eventual weight loss, before concluding with self-love and feeling comfortable in one’s own skin. 

Amiable and jolly in a self-deprecating and self-aware manner, Dimino gets personal without getting personal while dishing the skinny. Her show manages to remain lighthearted and easy on the tragedy, despite a few somber moments here and there. There is no self-pity, nor are there any convoluted justifications or explanations — just straight, reflections and mulling over how Dimino came to fulfill a Ouija board prophecy she first heard at the tender age of eight.

Skinny is a bit of a hodgepodge of reflections and anecdotes that make for one larger story, but at times the show takes on the feel of a self-help seminar or, even more awkwardly, a testimony. Oddly enough, this works to Dimino’s advantage as it creates an atmosphere of goodwill and cheer that wins the audience. Throw in Dimino’s charisma, knack for engaging facial expressions and chipper can-do attitude, and Skinny becomes a winsome show with an audience who roots for her, through and through. 

Thankfully, Dimino doesn’t offer any wayward advice on how to lose weight with acai berries, but rather sticks to anecdotes on her terrible choice of boyfriends — like an Israeli gunrunner. does not present us with false sentiments or information on how to become picture perfect. What it does present is learning how to deal — practically and realistically — and learning how to be okay with oneself. And that’s always something we can get behind.