First appeared in More Light Update 12.2 (September 1991): 5.
© 1991 by More Light Update; © 2004 by Louie Crew
On my way to evensong, I stopped off in Penn Station for a Big Mac. All of a sudden, two young boys, about 16, started saying in a screaming whisper, "That's a man. That's a man." The person in question, in a lovely red dress but slightly tattered wig and high black stockings, rushed with his tray to the far side of the room, and turned his back on all the commotion. "You need to shave a bit better! That's a man! That's a man! Why don't you buy a new wig! That's a man........"
This went on for at least 20 times. Most of the help behind the counter were in hysterics. Most of the customers were tired old people like me. The heckler and his side kick wore McDonald's clothing, but seemed off duty, not eating, but idling about.
Finally I had had enough. "Little boy," I said.
He was livid as he glared at me.
"Does McDonald's pay you to insult the customers!"
"Why, are you a faggot too!" he screamed.
This delighted the help even more.
"Would you like for me to call the police?" I responded.
"That's a man! That's a man!...." he continued with his litany.
The first person, apparently an assistant manager, called the people by name and said, laughing, "XXX come on now, leave." He kept looking back at the fellow in the red dress, who must have eaten his sandwich faster than a priest can say Mass when he has a hot date waiting for him in the choir room.
Finally the real manager came, I asked him for his name, but he would not give it to me. "That young boy has not grown up and for many minutes now he has been insulting customers. Do you pay him to do that?"
"He works somewhere else."
"So you allow him to sit here insulting customers wearing the costume of your company? Will I have to go for the police to get this to stop? What...."
By this time the entire restaurant was stony silent, and the offenders retreated out the door calling me a faggot once again. The manager still refused to give me his name. We shall find it out in the morning when I get all my networks plugged in.
When I walked out the door, I looked like any other fat old bald- headed man.
I can just hear my husband if I dare tell him about it. "Lordy mercy, chile, can't even get out the country more than a couple of months and you go acting like a country bumpkin. Don't you know in the city just to keep quiet and mind your own business?!"
He's right, of course. But I will never forget the kiss which the guy in the red dress threw to me as we boarded separate cars on the PATH train. It was better than all the candles and the incense and the glorious Bach as only a NYC organist can do it.
We queans must stick together, or our tiaras aren't worth a tinker's malediction.
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