Once upon a time, in a land just a few blocks away, I had the unrequited desire to be a drag queen. The lesbians could make no sense of it. “You can’t be a drag queen. You’re a girl.” I was undeterred. I had had a lifetime of people telling me what I could not do because I was a girl. The desire, however, remained locked within me until one day one of my straight friends showed up at work with the perfect outfit: white leather/ black spandex short-shorts and halter top, with a pair of cat-eye sunglasses to match.
Under the cover of Halloween, I made my drag debut. I was disturbingly hot. Let me assure you, however, that being a drag queen requires a lot more than just looking good. Not everyone has the cojones to pull off dancing, lip synching, and keeping the beat. In heels. One night wobbling around was enough for me.
Or so I thought.
Along came the Hunger Games, and who was I pining to emulate? Not the amazing Katniss Everdeen (though she fascinates me in her inability to make sense of the world she has been thrust into and her inability to be other than who she is). Nope. Effie Trinket.
Effie of the big hair and bigger flower, perfect make-up, and strangely chastely sexy outfits. And those eyelashes? To die for. Except those lashes were $20. And I am cheap. Three Halloweens come and go and I am frozen, unable to go forth and shop, despairing of ever finding the perfect outfit. But those eyelashes . . .
I confide my secret to a woman at work, and before lunch, she has sent me a link – $3.99. Those eyelashes are mine. Just this Saturday, I found the perfect dress and shoes to go with those eyelashes. (You know I had help–thank god for the women in my life with feminine sensibilities and aesthetic taste.)
Effie has pervaded my soul. I want more. Who needs Halloween?
Contributed by Jamie Mayo
Originally published in the blog Holy Shit: Growing a Life, www.fertilizedspirit.com, on 28 April 2015