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For Whom the Girl Tolls

A blast from the past!

My GG friend Michelle and her boyfriend frequent a local bar called Hemingway’s Zen Garden.  I’ve been to the bar a couple of times last year with Michelle, before she met her boyfriend. We had some interesting moments–like a patron who looked like a serial killer, and a slightly drunken woman, a/k/a “Crazy Sarah”, who didn’t quite understand I was a guy underneath the clothes. I hadn’t been there since, although Michelle is a semi-regular with the nickname Arkansas, her home state (yes, she has a big-time Southern accent).

Because of the Pandemic, the bar built an outdoor area with a band stand. That made me more comfortable about going (note: this was about two months ago, prior to the latest spike in the pandemic). We made arrangements to meet at the bar, as she and her boyfriend were going after she got off work.

It was a cool night so I wore a long sleeved black wool dress that Michelle had given me, another Hand-Dee-Down. I generally prefer shorter sleeves, as I can always wear a sweater if it’s too cold, but on this night being too warm wasn’t going to be an issue. It also meant I could wear pantyhose, also a no-no when it gets too warm.

I met several of Michelle’s friends including one of the bartenders, Patty, who was off-duty that night. She was extremely friendly, told me I looked great, and we shared life stories. Plus it was open mic night, so there was a pretty good band playing rock and blues music.

Patty’s son is gay and is engaged to a drag queen. Patty told Michelle the fiancee might be interested in going to work at Michelle’s salon, and Michelle was very interested in that possibility. Patty showed me pictures of the fiancee, and she looked great (I have since realized it would be a whole lot of fun to get a drag makeover). Patty was extremely supportive of her son and his fiancee.

Going out with Michelle is always fun, and meeting others like Patty was icing on the cake. The band was good, the people friendly, and it was a memorable night out.

And I love the dress I wore.

Look, I know I get out a lot and meet so many wonderful people, mostly ladies. But I remain in awe of Dee! Thank you my friend, thank you for being you.


3 Responses

  1. Update: This post was originally from October 2020, during a lull in the pandemic. Since then, I have been back to the bar a number of times. The bar owners and staff have made me feel welcome and I’ve eaten dinner there several times even without Michelle’s company. I will have a future post highlighting some of those more recent visits, and I have written about other past visits. I’m not exactly Norm from “Cheers”, but they do know my name

    The only problem is one of the other patrons is a person who I know from my guy world. The first time Michelle and I walked in (post pandemic, it has opened back up indoors) and he was sitting at a table with a group of four or five others. Michelle stopped to talk to the table, and I just kept walking and sat down at a different table. A few minutes later Michelle finished talking to that table and came and sat with me. I explained the situation. Michelle offered to leave but I just said I would keep a low profile, so we stayed, and they left shortly thereafter. I am sure the person didn’t recognize me. I’ve seen the person one other time when I was meeting Michelle there, so we went to another bar down the block.

    I will add this is not a LGBT specific bar, although they are welcoming to all. I’ve met other friends of Michelle who go to the bar, and the friends have all been accepting and friendly

    Thanks to Kandi for the last note. I didn’t plan any of this going in–having GG friends and a local favorite bar to go to–but it just worked out this way. I am 1000% sure Kandi would say the same about all the opportunities that have opened up to her.

    I always say my life is a series of fortunate accidents (like meeting my wife halfway around the world in Rotorua, New Zealand, 30 plus years ago). But to make things happen, like the saying about a turtle, you have to stick your neck out to move forward. As you are reading this, maybe it’s your turn to stick your neck out and get out of your comfort zone, and maybe you’ll have a fortunate accident too. Until you try, you’ll never know.

  2. Dee,
    I must admit being recognised in male mode is something I prefer not to happen but saying that all the people that I met in my new home town that knew me as such have been very accepting as Teresa . The tricky one is when I visit the hairdressers to have my male hair cut but she makes it very clear she prefers me when I pop my wig back on and return to where I’m most comfortable .

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