Saint Anne Thrax: embodiment of the mind
Tomji St. George chronicles this otherworldly character
Tomji St. George sat comfortably on a sofa at the Naked Lounge, sipping his tea, while recounting the miraculous birth of one Saint Anne Thrax. It appears he is the foremost authority on SAT, as just last month he published a book about her life.
“She has a scary name, and scary mannerisms, but she’s really sweet,” said St. George, a bit of sass in his voice. The 50-year-old’s short hair is a respectable white, and his scruffy face doesn’t suggest the visage of your average gay man who sometimes dresses in drag.
Perhaps that’s just part of the point: Saint Anne Thrax’s mission is to confront people and make them open their eyes and see past what’s in front of them.
“She’s very in-your-face,” St. George agreed.
The “tricksteress” comes to life through St. George and shares with others divine visitations, which could include anything from readings from the book on her life (Love Love Love: The Passion of Saint Anne Thrax) to primal screaming rituals to a wheel-of-fortune game in which the wheel represents the 12 biggest concerns in America.
“With the screaming meditations, I hope people get the idea that, ‘Yeah, we are concerned about stuff, and we really aren’t encouraged to speak out about things,’ and then people feel happy afterwards. It’s sort of cathartic,” St. George said.
Saint Anne Thrax preaches “luvluvluv” and replaces weapons with love toys. St. George’s book is sprinkled with humor—both dry and over-the-top—but isn’t afraid to address serious issues.
“We all go through dark times for a reason,” he continued. “With the economy the way it is now, Saint Anne Thrax says this is going to be a dark time, but there is hope.”
SAT was born during a dark time in St. George’s life. He’d been living out of his car in San Diego for 18 months when this character came to him one day—miraculously.
“Saint Anne Thrax went from being a performance-art thing to really me looking at what her story would be and writing it down,” he said.
A trained journalist, St. George had worked at magazines in Manhattan and a book publisher in San Francisco. So when it came to writing, editing, designing and publishing his book, he figured he could do it all himself, without worrying about editors butchering his words or turning down his ideas.
Beyond the performance and book, St. George also has a Web site dedicated to SAT: www.saintannethrax.com (where you can also buy the book).
Through the character, he is able to explore many different modern-day issues with a witty sense of humor.
“I’ve really allowed myself to have as much fun with this project as possible—and that’s been a real challenge,” he said. But comedy has always been close to St. George’s heart—one of his best friend’s in college, in fact, went on to be a writer for Saturday Night Live.
“I come from more of an activist background, living in New York, and as a reporter—I became a journalist so I could change things. If people can laugh about stuff, at least they’re listening.”