The Burgeoning Closet Of Queer

Posted: 06/06/2012 by erichblayde in Drag Queen, Hope
Tags: , ,

**NOTE** Most of this blog is being written Friday afternoon while I am at work (yes I have an incredibly boring job) and is regarding events happening Friday evening, However due to my work having a depressing lack of that wonderful thing known as wifi it will most likely not be posted until very late Friday/early Saturday(bad blogger!) That having been said….Onwards!

Oh looky looky dear readers, good old Unkie Blayde has gone and got himself into a right foul up this time. Why in the HELL did I ever agree to this one? I’m no good with public anything (unless I am in a dress, which unfortunately I don’t have time to don this evening) and yet…here I am, stuck in this mess, forced to go in boy drag and desperately trying to think of a non-painful way to break my arm for 24 hours so I have an excuse to get out of it.

Oh wait. You haven’t the foggiest clue about what I am talking about. Whoops!

I am talking, dear reader, about queers. Young queers and lots of ’em. And they scare me

Now you’re probably thinking my cheese has completely slipped off my cracker.

Fear not dear reader, Unkie Blayde’s sumptuous slice of Swiss soy cheese hasn’t quite slipped off his Melba Toast extra low salt/low fat rice cracker yet (have I mentioned I’m on a health kick) I am merely terrified out of my wits by the thought that, in a few short hours I am going to be sitting in on a queer youth group that apparently views me as a valuable queer resource. Me! I ask you, what sort of nonsense is that?!

Well like it or not I am stuck doing it (and really I would love to be of some use to GLBT youth it’s just a scary prospect) I have had a rather large amount of experience working with queer youth in a few different capacities, don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I am wandering into this blind deaf and dumb. It’s just terrifying when there’s a huge group of them

I think the thing compounding my fears is that I really have no idea what to expect. Back when I was of youth group age it wasn’t cool to be queer and there weren’t many gay youth groups at all. The only one anywhere near me met once a month and consisted of a crotchety old gay couple that always attired themselves in ties and sweater vests attempting to teach us how to avoid rocking the boat and disparaging all the “filthy radicals” (and that’s a direct quote) that were demanding equal rights (come to think of it they also thought gay marriage was a “pipe dream” so I think they have been proven completely falsified.)Needless to say while I have a fair chunk of one to one youth mentoring experience…a whole pack of queer youth in an organized environment? I must be OUT of my bloody mind!

Not that I haven’t been known to take leave of my senses before.

And really I must say, it’s not my fault! The blame for the butterflies lies solely on the rather broad shoulders of one of the newest inductees to my Fave People list. Let’s call him My Buddy shall we? And the blame for my being tossed to the wolves, er, charming young angels I am to meet tonight is all his. The bugger has been trying to recruit me for months (at my unspoken request I am sure) and he’s finally got me (of the fact that I simply cannot refuse the request of any queer youth in need we shall not speak) 

And now here I sit, mere hours away from attending something that for me was always unattainable, worrying (as ever) about what I am going to say to these youth, what they might want to know and just praying I can pass on a tiny weensy touch of hope.




Why did I ever think going there was a bad idea? That was AWESOME

How well I remember what it was like to grow up/transition in this town. I didn’t think about it until I saw the looks of delight that passed from person to person when I was telling the group what types of skills I could bring to the table (namely boatloads of books, a stage full of drag queens and a skilled hand with a make-up brush)

I had originally intended to make my offer and get the h-e- double hockey sticks out of dodge, but my fears were held at bay by the delighted squeaks and warm applause that heralded the finishing of my announcement (that and a make-up brush in my hand helped too)

I am at a total loss to describe the incredible feeling of pride in my community at the sight of those youth. I think perhaps I said it best in one of my older entries

“Know that it gets better.

Way back when, we were all as young and scared as you are now. Way back when we all had our mishaps, false starts, and embarrassments. Way back when we were as clueless and floundering as you feel today.

But now, now we have a rich and vibrant history. We have our Harvey Milks, our Jane Rules and our Kate Bornstiens. And so too we have our Brandon Tennas, our Matthew Shepards and our Gwen Araujos. There have been beautiful victories and bitter defeats, utter triumphs and heart wrenching sorrows. But through it all we have survived. Through it all we have flourished.

And it was all worth it.

For all the pain, the tears, the loneliness, for all the fighting and the unfulfilled dreams of so many, now we have you. And trust me young one, you’re worth it.

You don’t have to be perfect right now, stumble if you have to. Hold on to us when you want to. Use us now young darling, while you need us.

One day you will learn to fly.”


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