Meet Your Maker
Sitting on the local waiting in the station
then running and shouting.
A voice yells everybody down!
We obey without question.
How strange to be in a group all faced in the same direction
the voice pulling us like gravity
first to bent knee
then lying flat
all thinking that
this is our last day on earth,
all obedient to a voice we cannot see.
If this were church think how holy it would be.
The voice hollers roll under
and we slide beneath the seats.
The voice yells here they come
then high heels and oxfords stampeding
everyone is screaming
everyone fears for their life
while we pack arse to elbow
are we trapped or are we safe?
It seems forever,
but finally they all run past.
Things are quiet
we come up for air.
Cops have a man on the platform and hold a gun to his head.
They take him away and it’s over
find a seat, settle in, laugh a bit, sigh with relief.
I look down to the floor.
Size 12 white high heels and a pair of sunglasses.
Here was a drag queen losing his faith.
New York City
The incident described above happened on the subway in October 2000. That evening, I checked the nightly news and radio, and the next day the newspaper. Nothing. Well, it’s a big city. The size-12 white high heels, something a cross-dressing man might wear, were placed side by side as if on a closet floor and the sunglasses rested neatly across the toes. Why? I decided to go to the local expert on such matters, a drag queen named Jose, a Puerto Rican guy from Yonkers whose muse was Peggy Lee. He knew everything about her. The way some people know the stats of football players he knew all things Peggy Lee. He performed for adult audiences (besides the liquor license his signature song was Is That All There Is?—don’t ask). Anyway, I told him what had happened on the subway and about the high heels and sunglasses. What did he make of it? He nodded knowingly and informed me: “That’s the drag queen code.” You guys have a code? Jose from Yonkers explained: “Si, si, because a man cannot run in heels. He can walk in them, but he cannot run. It’s because of how his hips are. So, if you are in drag in a nightclub, theater or whatever, and somebody yells ‘fire,’ and everybody is running for their life—ditch the heels. If you trip in them and people fall on top of you, exits are blocked, people are hurt, people die. This is the drag queen code.” Why were the heels so neatly arranged? “That was to show he was there and doing the right thing.” They looked expensive. “Don’t worry, darling, that man went back for his shoes.”
After my talk with Jose, I decided to write “Meet Your Maker” and tell the story about the frightening event on the subway and the cross-dresser ceding pretense for the sake of safety. It began as an essay, but it came out rhyming and I went with it (apologies to proper poets everywhere). With the way things are these days I hesitated about using this material for a blog. (Will the “men can’t run in heels” biological factoid inspire appointments with greedy orthopedic surgeons to break and realign hips to acquire yet another piece for their jig-saw puzzle womanhood?)
This story shows a striking difference between what some drag queens considered civic minded back then, and what some do now. Then it was to enjoy your role play but not let it interfere with common sense. Now it’s Drag Queen Story Hour for toddlers—meant to give children a lesson in inclusion and diversity, right? Tots need this? If the little ones think about it at all they probably think it’s just silly men dressed up like Grandma’s friends; but that doesn’t mean it’s harmless. Just because children are too young to understand what’s being done to them, doesn’t mean something isn’t being done to them. “Story Hour” may only happen of an afternoon, but are parents, who may mean well, jumping on a trendy bandwagon too easily? The bottom line is that it’s not for the benefit of the kids, it’s a public exhibition to counteract associating Gay with pedophilia, which has merit, but using children to do it defeats the purpose.
In my opinion today’s gay scene has become equal parts absurd and mundane. The acronym LGBTQA+2S is even longer than it looks because the A+ can mean pansexual, asexual, non-binary or gender fluid. “Born This Way,” already dubious, is now more like “Born Every Which Way” and counting. (There’s a movement to get back to basics and drop a bunch of those letters. It’s Time to End This Gender Madness. We LGBs Need to Divorce the TQI+s | Opinion (newsweek.com) What started out as a way for a unique but marginalized community to stand together has been commandeered by The Woke for its own interests, which are heavy into virtue signaling and radical left-wing politics. Thanks to them it’s become self-absorbed, predictable and tedious. And boring.