DRAG QUEENS, POOL BOYS, AND BATHROOM ATTENDANTS
By Lucy Baker
Last weekend I had to go to a birthday party at one of those kitschy restaurants where all the employees dress in drag. In the ladies’ room there was a drag queen acting as a bathroom attendant. On the counter she had set up bottles of perfume, cans of hairspray, and a basket full of gum and Tootsie rolls.
Two women were chatting as they reapplied their lipstick. The drag queen said to them “You know, tips are appreciated.” The women snapped their compacts closed and scurried away.
I went into a stall, then came out and washed my hands. The drag queen thrust a paper towel in front of me. “You know,” she said “tipping is appreciated.”
“I don’t have my purse,” I said “Sorry.”
I have nothing against bathroom attendants - or drag queens for that matter - but this place was a total dive. I resented that in addition to being forced to check my coat ($2) and order a minimum number of drinks with names like Lola’s Pool Boy ($8), I was also expected to pay to pee.
About an hour and two Pool Boys later I had to go again, and the situation repeated itself.
“You know,” the drag queen said pointedly “tips are appreciated.”
“I’m sorry,” I mumbled “I left my bag at the table. I don’t have any cash.”
The drag queen put her hands on her hips and glared at me. “But this is your SECOND TIME in the bathroom” she bellowed.
I ran away and wiped my hands dry on my jeans.
When the party was finally over around midnight, my bladder felt like it was going to explode (damn Pool Boys). I weighed my options. I didn’t want to face the drag queen again, but there was no way I could make it all the way home.
So I used the men’s room. I figured that in this place, it didn’t really matter.
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THE BOOK, THE AUDIO, THE TYPING ABOUT BOTH
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