I believe it was mid-1991 when I completely withdrew from mainstream, heterosexual life. I had gone through a bad breakup. And by bad I mean that my fiancé had dumped me over the phone- a pay phone no less- and proceeded to immediately hook up with a girl I was close to. And by hook up I mean no sooner had I moved out of the apartment we had just moved into, and was around the corner from the salon I worked at, than her car started showing up outside on the street. I would like to note that she was a Too Live Crew groupie because to this day it makes me giggle and makes him cringe*.
As I mentioned, I worked in a hair salon, which was on Ventura Blvd in Woodland Hills. Having been enrolled in beauty school since the age of 15, I had easy access to gay boys. And gay boys had always loved me. Perhaps my bawdy sense of humor had something to do with it, but whatever the reason was, gay boys and me have always just gelled.
Post break up I was immediately taken under the wing of a boy who had numerous ties to the entertainment industry. We quickly began a routine of hitting up the leather bars on Santa Monica Boulevard and crawling back to his apartment, which was an alleyway away. Or ‘stumbling distance’ as I liked to say. I still have a deep appreciation for leatherboys and all their accouterments and eventually worked as a body piercer. Go figure.
Quickly I became immersed in the WeHo life. I hung out with a lot of female impersonators, or drag queens as we called them back in the day. Some of who gave me the best makeup tips I have ever received. I was completely removed from the world where my sexuality mattered. I was invisible; I was totally free, in a sense. I was introduced to people who worked on major television shows, and I fell into the world of the indulgences that can accompany that lifestyle. And I loved every minute of it.
I bring this up because I have always struggled with heteronormativity, particularly as it pertains to females. I have never appreciated the rules that were pushed upon me because I was born with two X chromosomes and therefore possessed a vagina. There are numerous environmental factors that also contributed to my rebellion, but the expectations of being female have always pissed me off. And thusly, I have never really “acted like a girl”.
To this day my most favorite smell in the world is when I first walk into a leatherboy store. I have a very dear friend who can attest to this, and it makes her smile whenever I show up and say ‘I love the smell of leather and lube in the morning’!
There is no real point to this, other than I felt like writing.
As you were, fuckers.
*told you I’d forever and publicly mock you for that one, douchebag.