It’s not often that I encounter a person that isn’t somewhat familiar with gay culture. You don’t need to start thinking Stonewall or gay history, I’m talking bars, booze and sex. A majority, if not all, gay men, especially in New York City engage in the aforementioned activities on a weekly basis…at the least.
This past week I had a friend express she’d never been to a drag show and was really hoping to see one. It must be something about my inability to censor myself, but the constant stream of word vomit that projects seems to make others more comfortable in making confessions. I wouldn’t realize until much later in the evening, after tracking down a drag show, which I have to say was unexpectedly hard to do in Miami, that this was my friend’s first-ever gay bar experience. Once this fact came to light, my mission was no longer to ensure a good drag show, but to ensure my friend had a ridiculous experience that would prove unforgettable.
I discovered the perfect dive bar, knowing it was right when someone walked up to me in the bathroom and said, “I haven’t slapped you tonight,” then whipped out a slap bracelet and traipsed away. Oh yes, this was the perfect first gay bar experience. There were two levels, a patio and a weird corner bar, each area blasting its own music. We selected the Latin dance floor, which only made good sense; of course four white people are going to go shake nonexistent hips to Spanish music, why not?! Lucky for me the beers were two for one, it was incredibly helpful in dulling the throb of my broken toes. What I learned: You can’t dance on broken toes, unless you drink enough to shut your brain down.
My friend was force fed shots, vodka and beers until finally calling it quits when an elderly man stuck his hand up a go-go dancers underwear only to revel in the moment. It was a tad disgusting, but enough to send my friend back to the hotel. I remained with the others from our group, having several more drinks. The mission was a success. It was a short while later I realized how much alcohol I had ingested during the night. My liver, usually cooperative, made the decision to punish me.
The diner restroom was the first place I was vomiting, then there was the cab and the hotel – would this ever end? Coming out with such force even my nose was releasing the toxic mixture that only a few hours before was fun fuel. Eventually I found the magical place we all long for in this type of moment – sleep. The next morning I wanted to die and a Bloody Mary was my best friend, but I still take some pleasure in knowing that one, fairly religious person, had an awesome first gay bar experience and opened her mind up just a little more.