09 October 2012

From Birthday To Benefit (Originally Published 2 Apr 2008)

Current mood:annoyed

Wednesday came and I got up early and did a few things around the city, as is my want.  I had decided, over the previous few days, to give myself a Mohawk.  I know that I was getting over the pink hair but a Mohawk would be something different, even if it’s a big fluorescent pink Mohawk.  I had found the missing attachments to the hair clippers in the bathroom closet when I was searching for something else.  Giving myself enough time to do the deed before work, I took off my shirt and went into the bathroom with mirrors and scissors and all the items I’d need to create the ’do and began.  I started by using the scissors to trim down the sides of my hair, leaving the back and top longer to slowly cut the shape of the Mohawk into it.  Then, looking like some odd concentration camp victim, I turned on the clippers and began to shave my head.  Until it died.  Kaput.  Nothing.  There I stood, with my hot pink hair in various lengths from shaved to the skull to five inches in spots, and time was moving along.  I had to get ready for work soon and I had no time for this!  Quickly, I threw on a shirt and a hat and ran down to the Rite Aid to get another set of clippers (with money I didn’t need to spend) running home and looking at the hot mess I had created of myself.  I now had no time, which meant only one thing, total shave!  And I did, the entire head shaved down to nubbins.  There was more pink than I expected left over on the tips but it looked good and I jumped in the shower, washed off those little annoying itchy hairs that get EVERYWHERE and got ready and went to work. 
Surprising everyone, of course, with the new ’do.
The night was uneventful (but really busy), I coordinated the upcoming benefit show on Sunday with the "girls" who came in and had a few cocktails and after a bit, I shut the club, got home and went to bed, still glowing about my liaison the weekend before.
Thursday came and I went to work for the day shift.  Although it was kind of quiet, Jeanne who’s coordinating the event came in and we discussed the upcoming South Jersey A.I.D.S. Alliance benefit at Déjà vu nightclub on Sunday.  She hit me with a bit of an unexpected problem.  The evening before, the "girls" and I had planned out a rather lengthy show where we were going to do three sets of songs, starting with a seventies medley, then eighties and then the nineties since the theme of the event was "Back in the Day".  This would have been a forty-minute show, approximately, and Jeanne tells me, rather last minute, that the show can only be fifteen minutes long.  That’s one song each!  No medleys, no costume changes, no nothing!  Just a straightforward show, no frills, bells or whistles.  I chewed on this after closing out my shift.  I usually stay late when the Karaoke begins but I had plans to go to a birthday party that night and Ed was so kind to cover for me.  I hung about for a bit, it was too early to go to the party and then decided to get something to eat so I wandered over to the Rainforest Café to see Meredith and feed the beast!  I wanted something fast so I ordered their chicken sandwich and it was rather good, I have yet to try something off their menu that isn’t tasty.  She had me wait, since it was nearly closing time and I must say it’s rather eerie to be there when all the animatronics are turned off.  Let’s just say the magic of the rainforest is lacking without a little electrical help.  She did her closing duties and I slip/slided my way through the kitchen and back areas and to her car, which was parked in Caesars parking garage.  She drove me to the Tropicana’s Quarter, begging off my invitation to join me, and I entered and went upstairs to Thirty-Two Degrees where Chris’ birthday party was being held.  Thirty-Two Degrees is actually a dessert restaurant during the day called Crème Bruelee and a nightclub at night, specializing in bottle service. This is good because it’s a rather small space for a proper club.  I was still there early but I got to meet Chris’ younger brother and new girlfriend and the "fag" to her "hag" who’s name I promptly forgot (Recent Observation: Straight boys seem to want the BFF, too, nowadays.  That’s "Best Fag Friend").  I had some cock…tails, the obligatory shots and then more and more people came in, Bryan, Lori, Lexi, pretty much the entire former staff (five years ago) of Club Tru/Studio Six.  Those of us from the "good ol’ days" that worked together.  Somehow I ended up being Lexi’s bitch for the night, following her around and doing whatever she told me to do, which was fine since I had no where to be besides there and I was just enjoying the party.  We wandered over to Providence, the new nightclub that took over from the now defunct T.S.O.P. (The Sound of Philadelphia).  I had a bit of trepidation about running into you-know-who but happily he wasn’t there and I relaxed and enjoyed myself.  We ended up going back to Thirty-Two and then Providence, yo-yoing between the two when it was decided that we were all leaving for Babes Gentleman’s Club.  Somehow during the walk to our respective vehicles, the plans changed but Lexi had already rang ahead to make sure Babes stayed open and she and I went there, where I had more cock…tails and such. 
Then it hit me! 

I had to work on Friday!  I had totally forgot and here I am partying like a rock star and I had to work the day shift!  Bloody hell!  So Lexi blessedly gave me a ride home and I passed out.

Work on Friday was painful!  PAINFUL!  I was so hung, I could barely function.  Thankfully it was steady and I was able to keep my mind off my pain, the throbbing pain that kept pounding in my skull like a drag queen parade on stilettos.  Down cobblestones.  Dancing.  With tambourines. 
I left right after my shift, going home and dying. 
Once I rose from the dead, I did the usual stuff and then had to go back to work once again.  I remembered when I got there to call the "girls" and tell them about the changes for the show, one number each according to theme and that’s that!
Saturday was DEAD!  Of course.  The Mortimer Curse was in effect, my usual barpartner, Lee, was off so instead of it being busy and me making a boatload of money all by myself, it was slow and I made crapola!  Woohoo!  Miss Patti did stop by and promised me that she’d be in front of my penthouse promptly at six to take me to the club to get ready for the benefit show. 
DON’T YOU BELIEVE IT!  I watched her go, thinking that all was set for tomorrow.   
I did stop by Maloney’s Uptown after my shift, since we shut early due to the lack of business, but I didn’t stay there too long because I had a very important benefit to attend to (and perform in) on Sunday night!

I got up with more than enough time to get my show together but I was in a quandary as to what song to do!  I mulled this over again and again, going through my music and trying to decide what song would best suit me and the evening.  I figured it was going to be rather busy and I wanted to choose the perfect song.
Then it hit me. 

I’ll do Boy George! 

I thought; this crowd was crazy for the eighties and who else is the single most recognizable icon that everyone would immediately identify with from that era?  It was a no-brainer from that point and I got my costume together, and a walk around outfit for before the show (and one for after if I felt like staying dressed).  I got showered, shaved the beard I had grown for the last three weeks (since I didn’t have a show in all that time) and packed and waited for Miss Patti.  Of course, my psycho-mate had his nephew and his grand-niece staying over and they were in the front room, where I needed to be to monitor the street below for Miss Patti’s chariot.  I got tired of running back and forth from my crypt to the front so I put on a coat, grabbed my drag bag and costumes and waited downstairs. 
(As an aside; I did leave the psycho-mate a ticket for the benefit.  He used to work at the clubs being "remembered" and I thought it would be nice for him to be there to see old friends he hasn’t seen in years.  He didn’t show.)
Miss Patti didn’t show, either.  And it was cold out.  And windy.  Of course. 
Oh, I forgot to mention that my mobile is on the fritz this entire time and I couldn’t get a hold of anyone.  So, I gather my things and walk down to the Jitney stop, looking rather odd with my costumes all wrapped up in my Boy George jacket and hanging over my arm and a huge black bag slung over my shoulder.  I was lucky until the last three blocks not to have anyone sit next to me during the trip and now a rather heavy-set woman gets in and sits right next to me, blocking my exit from the two-seater and my access to my bag that I had put in the compartment beside the door to the Jitney.  I was already annoyed that Miss Patti blew me off and the fact that I would have to walk all the way down the long block to the club so I didn’t need this latest…obstruction.  I did my "excuse me’s" and practically pushed her back into the seat so I could get my things and get moving.
I got in to Déjà vu and it was busy as hell already!  Good sign!  I put my things upstairs and went back down to see the staff, since I know them all, and to coordinate with Jeanne about the show.  Where we were getting dressed, where we were entering the stage/dance floor, the usual things.  The "girls" arrived and as I was instructing them about the event, it hit me…I forgot my make-up case at the Westside! 
Miss Patti came in just at that moment and off we went, first having to get gas (of course) and whilst that was happening, I ran to McDonalds (which is right behind the gas station) because I was starving and all they had at the event were soft pretzels donated from The Philadelphia Pretzel Factory, my addiction centre.
I ran into the Westside where poor Ed was all alone since everyone was at the Déjà vu/Chez Paree event.  I grabbed my paint, we zoomed back to the club, and I got ready.
We were put in the upstairs ladies room, no biggie, and began to trowel on the paint doing what we do best when we are together in a dressing room, no matter what form that dressing room may take.  I got to see Holly Farris, a female female-impersonator, who’s locally famous and one of my good friends whom I hadn’t seen in a long time.  We caught up on things and after getting dressed, we all wandered around, mingling with the crowd which now had reached capacity for the complex.  It was so packed in there you could barely move and this is one of those "mega-clubs".  Just trying to get to the bar was a forty minute affair since you had to make your way through the people, stopping to chat with each and every one of them because you knew them and hadn’t seen them in forEVER!  By now, they had opened the upstairs so we had to share our "dressing room" with the ladies who had to pee.  Unfortunately we kept forgetting that someone was in a stall and we were gossiping about how old this one looked, how that one broke up with so-and-so, how that one’s under indictment, you know, gossip! And we gossip rather evilly when we get together.  Luckily those we trashed weren’t in the stalls!  It was time to get ready for the show and I set the final lineup. 
Holly introduced us and first out was Lemon Fresh Joy who did "Knock on Wood", that disco song that I still love to death!  Her costume was amazing, black shiny poly-vinyl with lime green lightening bolts and she wore a huge Afro!  Too cool!  Darina Ho was next who did "9 to 5" by Dolly Parton, which might seem odd but when the song was out, it was a big hit and she went over well.  Remember, this is a "back in the day" party.  Then it was my turn out and I did "Karma Chameleon" by Culture Club.  I personally hate that song, I have never done it but I know it’s everyone else’s favourite so I did it for the charity.  I waited for the music to begin, holding off the reveal and then burst out there to applause and looks of surprise because I do resemble that other queen of England!  I could barely finish the song because people were coming up to dance with me and I kept seeing people I haven’t seen in years standing around in the audience.  I had to remind myself to stay in character and not just run up to them to chat!  Last out was Alexia Love since she was doing "Last Dance" by Donna Summer.  It’s a given to do that song last in the show. 
The show was a success, the crowd wanted more but we were done and it was time to dance.
We all got changed and then Miss Patti and I were making our way across the dance floor to the bar when the song changed and we began to dance instead.  Five songs later, we were still out there tripping the light fantastic!  What a fun night!
We finally went to the Westside for Latin night and the show over there and Jose drove me home when the club shut for the night.

I went in, took off my clothes, crawled into bed and passed out until Monday afternoon!

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