Gay Bar 94

As I travel through the solar system and beyond in my flying saucer I find myself more and more estranged from the old and the familiar. At this distance I have a perspective I have never experienced before.

Let me engage the time machine mechanism of my flying saucer and take you back to a vignette from my own past: It’s 1994 and we are outside seedy gay bar in a run down industrial neighbourhood, by a railway station that no longer delivers any materials for the now defunct foundries.

The building is painted black, and there is no signage. Only the deep and familiar pounding of the bass-line of a club anthem echoing across the deserted street. Someone mentions that until recently you used to have to say a code word to get in. Nowadays you just have to pay the $5 cover charge.

Entering the bar there is a dance floor so small that it is impossible to prevent a kind of disco line-dance from forming. The men are very friendly, and we’re 16 and don’t understand the potency of youth. There’s a Drag Show happening out the back in the “courtyard”; which is a euphemism for a fenced off section of the carpark out the back. Breeze blocks and faux Grecian murals surely add pizzazz.

A queen who’s first name is Princess, is lip-syncing and her lipstick is smeared. Someone mentions she’s been earning some money by providing oral sex to various patrons, out the back, in the toilets. We’re not convinced that this is true. The crowd is rowdy and Princess has run out of tolerance. She screams at the crowd and reaches within her top, retrieves and then launchers her left breastform into the crowd. It’s a rolled up football sock. The crowd roar with laughter. Princess half stomps, half sways of the stage. She is not amused.

We see another striking queen across the courtyard, her jet black hair pulled back into a pony tail. Someone mentions it’s her own hair. Someone else mentions she’s not to be trifled with. We are frightened of her.

Don’t worry, I know what happens next and we do eventually get home safely. Let’s just head back to the flying saucer and put the time machine mechanism into reverse and speed through the shimmering vortex back to the now.