Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Word

The old string and tin cans… good of way as any to spread the “word”. 

Now, let’s talk about the “word”. 

I find it amazing how fast the “word” is spread. I know we live in a world with texting, Facebooking, Tweeting, but still, it seems like people know thing before they even happen. Moreover, what is the “word”? Well, I guess it goes by many names, some good, and some bad.  You might have called it the truth or a lie, a lot might just call it gossip, but it is the “word” and it spreads fast.

Now here is what really amazes me about the word.  We all know that is spreads faster than a wild fire in a windstorm. We all know that it does not lay down on the grown were it was spoken, but takes to the air and flies to all that will listen. Yet, some still choose to speak things and think that it will never get out. They speak lies and not think it will come back to haunt them. They gossip and think it won’t get back to the person they are gossiping about. Sometimes, they do not even realize the power behind the truth they speak and the vast effect it can have.

Now, I know your thinking, where is this coming from? Why is the husband of a drag queen saying this? Well, it is simple. The ability to speak is a great gift. The ability is listen is just as great!

And let me tell you girl! I have heard it all!

The quiet ones are the ones that are listening. We have learned the power of the word. We know its strength. We have felt its might upon us. We have experienced the word’s power for both good and bad. We may have been bullied by words. We may have been uplifted by words. We have been brought back to reality by words. Even you have seen the power of the word. In the news, there always seem to be another story of a boy who could not take it any more. Yet, then there is the story of the young girl that rallied hundreds to help a great cause.

I guess it really comes down to this. We have all heard it said, “choose your words wisely”. They can be a great weapon, but like a double bladed sword, they can cut both ways.

So I hope this leaves you with something to think about. Hey, there’s a good word “hope”.

Well, I am out of here!


Saturday, June 25, 2011

On Exhibit

   The other day I went with Holotta Tymes to the Market Street Gallery in San Francisco to check out the Heroes with Bling exhibit. The exhibit is of a series of photos taken by the amazing Jose A. Guzman Colon and the talented Marianne Larochelle and a series of amazing Drag Queen mosaics by Michael Kruzich.  The reason we were going is that Holotta was part of this exhibit.

   Michael Kruzich had made this beautiful mosaic of Holotta Tymes and when I say beautiful, I mean beautiful. He had captured the image of Holotta so well and brought so many dimensions to it. You can spend forever looking at the piece examining the details, the texture and colors that he used. It is an amazing piece of artwork! Holotta was so honored to be the inspiration for this.

   The thing that amazed me was that Michael used one of my photos as the basis for this great mosaic. I think I was more honored then Holotta was. I still cannot believe how well Michael captured the photo.  I might me a little bias, but I have to say that it was the best one!

   This is not the first time this photo has been put out there in the public either. I am lucky to have it used in the advertising for Sunday’s A Drag at the Harry Denton’s Starlight Room. It is on the flyer for the show and gets used in the ads that they publish in local magazines and newspapers.

   Also, while at the event, Holotta got to see the photo that Marianne Larochelle took of her for the first time. It is in a great photo book put together by Marianne and Jose A. Guzman Colon called Glam Gender. The book is a series of photos that takes the standard rules of gender and throws them out the door! It is a must for any gay coffee table! The photo of Holotta is of her standing in front of a Victorian home. It is a great image that congers up the ideals of San Francisco, drag queens and the expression of life all into one photo. Jose and Marianne are both great photographers to look up to and are amazingly talented.

   If you have the opportunity to check out Heroes with Bling, you should! It is going on only to the 29th of June at the Market Street Gallery at 1554 Market Street in San Francisco. Also, look for the book Glam Gender at Books Inc in the Castro or at Retro Fit. You can also check it out at

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Drag Queens In Our Community.

    I was checking my calendar tonight to see what I going on in the next couple of weeks. One of the events is the AIDS Walk fundraiser that will be happening in a couple of weeks at Club 1220. That got me to thinking about how much money has been raised at the club by all the Drag Queens over the years.   The AIDS Walk fundraiser itself has raised easily over $10,000 in the past five years and that is just one of the fundraiser that happens on a yearly.
   There have been events for all kinds of charities at Club 1220.  We have raised money for The Trevor Project, the campaign against Prop 8, different cancer organizations, numerous HIV and AIDS groups and several kids organizations, like the Sunburst Project that puts on a camp for HIV positive kids. I tried to figure how much money has been raised by the Drag Queens at Club 1220 in just the past fourteen years that we have been putting on shows there.  I could not come up with an exact number, but it is over $100,000. I can’t even think of how much has been raised at Club 1220 since it’s opening days over 33 years ago.
   Now, that is just one club in a suburb of the San Francisco area.  Now think of all the bars and clubs just in and about San Francisco. Think of all the Drag Queens that have organized fundraisers for one organization or another. Now, think of all the Drag Queens across America. That is one hell of a lot of money raised.
   Fundraising is also just one part of what Drag Queens for done for the Gay Community. They have also been very active in advancing equal rights for gays, lesbians and transgender people.  We have even come to credit Drag Queens to leading the revolt against police at Stonewall in 1969, an event that has become to be known as the beginning of the Gay Rights Movement.
   Drag Queens even go back further then that. All the back in 1936, there was a club that opened in the North Beach area of San Francisco. The club was called Finocchio’s and it was on of the first places in America that dazzled their guests with the female illusionist, but I will leave that for another blog.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Passing Friends

Passing Friends. That is the title I gave to a photo I took back in 1996. It is of two drag queens sitting at a bus stop on Castro and Market. One was Holotta Tymes, the other was Veronda Lanai. One is still here… the other has passed on.

The photo has come to be one of my favorites, one that I think really tells a story. Two drag queens, crossing paths. One looking out on the horizon, eyeing what might be to come, the other looking down, pondering what has been. Maybe one is ready to head out in the world, while the other is ready to come home. Nonetheless, they are friends, passing each other on their own journeys.

Sadly, Veronda’s journey came to an end just a few years after the photograph was taken. She was a fun queen to hang around with and left her footprint on the community around her.

This will be the first of many photos I have taken that I will share and what they mean to me.

This particular one was part of a photo shoot for a drag show that was hosted by Cockatielia at the Bahia.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Robert The Door Whore...

One might ask what are some of the responsibilities are of a Drag Queen’s Husband. Well, the list is too long to mention them all, but here are a few of them.

1.     Putting away make-up after the face has been painted.
2.     Making sure that the gas tank is full before heading out to a drag show. (Pumping gas in face is not a good thing.)
3.      Keeping the Facebook page up to date and current.
4.     Packing up the drag after the show.

And the fifth one is being the Door Whore for the Un-BOY-lievable  Drag Show.

Un-BOY-lievable is the longest running drag shows in the east bay and happens every first and third Sunday of the month at Club 1220 in Walnut Creek. The show has been running for thirteen or fourteen years and I have been the door whore since the beginning. You ask what a door whore is? The door whore is the guy that collects the cover and checks the IDs of the bar patrons as they come in.

Now, let me tell you, I have seen a lot from the door whore’s position. One of the funniest is when a certain individual, whom shall remain nameless, was so drunk that he passed out on one of the couches in the club. A big mistake when drag queens are present. As soon as Holotta found out, the make-up came out. He ended up with a full face of colorful make-up and “fuck me” written across his forehead in bright red lipstick.

I have also seen my share of people being… shall we say naughty. Some of it was, if I am being honest, kind of hot to watch. Others left me wanting to burn the image from my memory.

I have to say the best part of being a door whore has been being able to meet all the people that have come thru the door at Club 1220. I have had the opportunity to make some good friends over the years that I still get to see every drag show Sunday.

I am also so honored to have had the privilege to have gotten to meet people that will never grace the door of Club 1220 again and so lucky to have had them in my life. 


Monday, May 9, 2011

Training Your Drag Queen Husband.

Drag Queen Husband Trainer for hire. Yes, let me whip your husband into shape and make him a valuable asset to any drag show you drag him too.
Over the years, I have heard Holotta told how lucky she is to have such a good drag husband. That they wished that their husbands were as good. Well, it has taken a lot of training to get to the level that I am now at. And trust me, there were a few bumps in the road.
One time was when Holotta had a show up in Guerneville, which is about eighty miles north of San Francisco. It was about a two and a half hour drive from our home in Hayward. At the half way point, a disturbing image popped into my head. It was of a make-up case sitting on a counter.  At home. Where I left it. Holotta is going to kill me. Lucky for me, I had a witness, our friend and fellow drag queen, Deneka, was in the car with us.
Actually, Holotta took the news fairly well and did want any drag queen would have done in the same situation. She pulled off the freeway at the sign of the next Wal-Mart. We were able to get most of everything she needed to get by for doing the show. And that is how I learned never to forget the make-up case again.
There was also the time I forgot the whole garment bag with several costumes in it. Yeah, you are thinking, “Wow, and he is still alive?” At least in this case, it was after the show was over. But, nonetheless, Holotta was not a happy camper, as in the garment bag was an old changing robe that came from Finocchio’s and unfortunately there are a few drag queens that have sticky fingers. Holotta was afraid she might not ever get it back. Thank the gods for the modern social network. I tracked down a couple of the other drag queens that had performed at that show on Facebook and got their phone numbers. With their help, I was connected with Ivy Drip, who was the host of the show. Sure enough, she had gathered up Holotta’s costume for safekeeping until we could pick them up. Which we did the next night, changing robe and all.
I have also been known to fall asleep on the job. When Holotta worked for Finocchio’s, I would go with her on the weekends, not that she needed my help there that much. Sometimes, I would get tired by the time they were getting ready to start the third show of the night and would go lay down in the side bleacher seating that rarely got used. What amazed people about this, was that this was right under the speakers. They could not believe that I could sleep with the music so loud right above my head. When the show was over, Holotta would be looking for me and the emcee at Finocchio’s, Brian Keith, would say, “Check the bleachers”. How Brian had known that I was up there, I never knew.
The other place that I use to fall asleep was back stage at Heklina’s Trannyshack. If you ever caught this midnight show at the Stud on Tuesdays, you know that it is really loud. The backstage area was also usually crammed with the performers. But sure enough, to Heklina’s amazement, I would be tucked away in the corner, fast asleep.
But even with the mistakes I have made, I have become an expert in several areas of being a Drag Queen’s Husband. I can pack a make-up box in a minute, clear a path through the crowd with the crack of a whip and make a costume change as fast as a stripper disrobing.
So, there is room still available for Summer Classes but enrolment is ending soon. Please don’t forget to check if you qualify for financial aide.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

In The Beginning...

So, this is the start. My attempt to blog to let you know  what I know, what I think, what I feel, what I see and what I want. And already at a blank of what to write. 
I guess I should start at the beginning, and let you know a little about me. My name is Robert, born to my parents in the early morning of September 12, 1972 in a town called Newbury Park in southern California. After several adventures in my neighborhood, I moved to Oakland the year I started junior high and have lived in the East Bay ever since. Though, a little over sixteen years ago, my life as a  Drag Queen's Husband began. 
It all started when I met a Drag Queen at a bar. The name of the bar was JR's. The name of the Drag Queen was Holotta, Holotta Tymes.
My first encounter with Holotta, well, I thought she hated me right off the bat. I was dating a guy named Charles and Holotta was his friend. When Charles introduced me to Holotta, I got the look that I interpreted as "Fuck Off". Drag Queens can give that look quite well. I made certain to avoid her on my other ventures into JR's.
Then it was on one of those ventures that I found myself being offered a job  at the bar by the manager, Mark Maguire. I had become part of the security crew and found myself working next to Holotta, who ran the VIP list. It was on one of the first nights working that I had my first conversation with Holotta. As we passed each other in the hall, she said Hello. I said hi back. And that was the ice breaker that started the pieces falling into place. 
I was still in the early stages of coming out and still not sure want I was looking for. I had dumped Charles only after a few weeks of dating him. And after a few weeks of working at JR's, I went in on my night off. I think it might of been a night that they had strippers performing. The club alternated sundays between drag shows and striper nights. The striper nights were hosted by another drag queen named Kartuna Strip. Kartuna's boy name was Bobby and I thought that he was kind of cute. Well, it was on this night that I tried hitting on Bobby and offered him my personal calling card. Bobby looked at me and asked me "How big is your cock?". I gave him an honest answer and he handed my card back. Ouch. But don't feel to bad, as Holotta was there that night, out of drag, as just Dale. 
Dale saw the whole interaction between Bobby and me go down. After Bobby walked away, Dale and I had a little bit of a conversation. And then it happened, Dale hit on me. He turned to me and said "This is  where you hand me your card and say 'give me a call' ", and that is want I did. 
Well, sure enough, Dale called me the next day and asked if I wanted to come over to his parents house that he was house sitting for. I agreed. I have been a Drag Queen's Husband ever since.
So, that is how it started. I hope to share more of my adventures as time goes by and give you insight into my view of the world we live in.