Category Archives: clothes

Sparkle Neely, Sparkle

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mrpeenee actually does not come from a family of drag queens, although rhinestones do show up a lot as familial mementoes. Case in point: tonight when we go to dinner, I will be wearing on my cuffs the links that were part of my father’s rhinestone stud set from when he was young and, apparently, the terror of South Texas.

The idea that my father, who displays the suave finish of Jed Clampett, even had a stud set is amazing. That they were composed of rhinestones is like stumbling across Sarah Palin’s past as a pole dancer.

I’ve had them for years and never worn them (well, how often has the need for stud set come up in your life? There’s no need to struggle for double entendre here, I provide them for you.) I had to scavenge a stone from one of the shirt front studs to replace one in the cufflinks lost in who knows what madcap evening of long ago. I’ve rinsed them in vinegar to shine them up (come to mrpeenee for household tips for drag queens) and am looking forward to being the hit of our dinner table.

Lambskin

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Earlier this year, I was grief struck over the smash-and-grab of my leather coat from the backseat of our car. Bastards. But all that moaning and gnashing is behind me now, I’ve moved on and to prove it, I bought a new coat today.

Although I wouldn’t say I was a better person for my loss, I would say I have a nicer jacket. I still miss how the old one was conformed to my crooked shape, but I’m sure this one will be too, some day.

Ties that Bind

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I was reading in the Wall Street Journal yesterday that the trade association that represents manufacturers of men’s ties is closing because so few men are still wearing ties. The story quoted a Gallup poll showing only 6% of men wore ties everyday to work. I myself finally stopped wearing them sometime in the last couple of years, after close to thirty years of knotting my neck every day to go to work, no matter how schmucky the job. Waiter, desk clerk, professional-whatever-it-is-I-am all had one thing in common: ties. And now that I’ve stopped wearing them I don’t want everyone else to run free, too. My Liberty is only precious in direct correlation to how much everyone else has to suffer. Waiter, a round of schadenfreude, please.

Over the years of neck bondage, R Man has loaded me up with a wardrobe of beautiful, beautiful ties. They are, after all the only pretty fabrics a man not of the tranny persuasion gets to wear. Sulfur yellow ties from the early 80’s, cobalt blue to go with black suits, psycho-delic paisley in hot pink and orange, I’m set. I just don’t wear them.

And then this morning on the subway I saw a tiny earnest young man struggling grimly to knot one. It was a monster, wide as something from the Jimmy Carter administration and that stiff ribbed silk that makes a big honkin knot but that’s murder to work with. I watched in condescending sympathy, since I long since mastered both the four-in-hand and the windsor (full and half) knots to the point where I could knock them off in the dark while carrying on a conversation and this guy seemed to really be having a hard time of it. My sympathy turned to amazement when he got up and it turned out to be a wee little lesbian doing boy accountant drag. I don’t know if that counts towards the 6% or not.

Inside mrpeenee’s Closet

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It unsettles me whenever I realize I retain some vestige of straight boy-ness. I adore decorating, have firm opinions about women’s shoes and have no gag reflex whatsoever – gay, gay, gay. And yet, because I sprang from a world of heterosexuals (rather like being raised by wolves) I still have some trace of that culture. Specifically, I maintain a passionate hatred of clothes shopping that would rival that of the most committed breeder boy. The entire process irks me and is why I have a wardrobe that can only be described as skeletal; it looks like an Amish farmer imitating an IRS agent. I have one pair of black leather shoes to wear to work, a pair of Converse tennis shoes for all the rest of the time and a pair of nice leather shoes I wear to funerals, and you had better be a pretty good dead friend for me to break them out. I had one belt I wore every single day until R Man gave me a new one for my birthday and took the old one away. All my shirts and pants come from Costco, I was beyond delighted to find out I could buy khaki pants and a five pound tub of salted cashews in the same place. The fact that they do not allow you to try on the merchandise is fine with me. Dealing with dressing rooms is one of the aspects of clothes shopping I like least; that and dealing with salesmen. I never feel as frumpy as I do when confronted with some clerk who probably makes a great deal less money than me and yet looks like I should be parking his car for him. All this means I have plenty of room in my closet, which is good considering how much room my porn collection takes up.

That’s why I’m fascinated with haz-mat bunny suits, those fabulous one piece costumes worn by workers scrubbing down Three Mile Island. I’d love to get away with having one as my daily ensemble. I always like footie jammies and these just take the concept to a higher plane.

Spring’s New Look

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Going downstairs to stir the beans, I passed a mirror (rarely a good idea) and realized that I was wearing my favorite ratty old flannel jammie pants, which are a homely maroon plaid, and the brown and green striped shirt I wore to work this morning. Fortunately, I did not wear the ratty plaid pants to work, but it was probably a near miss. The ensemble is very striking, but not in a good way. It’s not that I have no taste (well, maybe it is) but rather that I just don’t care. However, I do know that were the house to catch on fire, I would think long and hard before I would run outside in this costume.

CSI: Parking Garage

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We parked in the garage of the new condos next door to R Man’s building and returned this evening to find the rear window busted out. Blammo! I have to point out that in all my many years of living in high-crime, big city environs, this is the first time I’ve been the victim. It was just my turn I guess. So many times my old friends Magda and Cow Queen and I would be walking through the French Quarter and notice the glittering remains of somebody’s passenger window. “Look,” we would exclaim in our most Susan Hayward-ish voices, “Die-ya-munds in the guttah.” Well, I’m not laughing now.

Much worse than the busted out window, which we’re going to replace tomorrow, was the theft of my black leather jacket from the back seat. The bastard! The dear, dear Diane von Austinberg spotted that coat for me in a really pokey little junk store, never worn and only $80. I wore it until every crease reflected a matching wrinkle somewhere in my own hide. The bond between a gay boy and his leather coat is not an inconsiderable one and I’m going to miss it. The idea that some cracked out ho is wearing MY COAT down on Sixth Street right now… ooh, it makes me want to spit. Fortunately, I am too much of a lady, but still, first George Bush and then daylight savings time and now this. It’s almost too much.

That’s Succor, not Sucker

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O happy day. The Our Lady of Prompt Succor tee shirt has finally arrived and I’m giddy with clothing delight. Not only is there the smirky low humor aspect of wearing a shirt that proclaims Our Lady of Prompt Succor (so appropriate for me, always a lady whose succor knows no limitations) but also the unexpected bonus of the illustration.

When I ordered the shirt I saw there was some little drawing above the school’s name, but I assumed it was some stupid bull dog. Imagine my thrill to discover it is Our Lady her very self, rendered as a flying, scrappy nun. I think of her as Sister Euphemia, the Fightin’ Nun Now with Super Powers! Ready to kick the ass of Sectarian Evil Doers and Masturbators! As R Man pointed out, if your school team is called the Succors, you really need a tough mascot and what better than a dykey Mary, Mother o’ Jebus? I only wish I had a big enough chest to do justice to the wonder of it all, but you work with what you got.

OLPS

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When R Man and I were living la vie homosexual in New Orleans, we did so half a block from the Ursulines convent, an historic structure that included the former chapel of Our Lady of Prompt Succor. Of course, this seemed wholly appropriate to me since I too had been known by similar names. I was never able to snag a t-shirt with that title, but now, I’ve found it here . I’m getting mine in orange, cause it’s sassy.

Wardrobe Malfunction

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I am wearing today the outfit I always wear. A t-shirt, jeans with no embarrassingly obvious stains and converse tennis shoes. I realize this is the same fashion choice I have been making pretty much daily since I stopped wearing diapers. (Please, no cracks from the peanut gallery about when that was. You know perfectly well what I mean. Bitches.) I’m just glad I belong to a generation and a city where professional, responsible adults can get away with looking like their job description includes the phrase “Delivers newspapers in timely fashion.” Occasionally, and under duress, I have to dress like a real grownup. A beautiful black DKNY suit, a heavily laundered white shirt, and one of the many dazzling ties R Man buys me each Christmas and I look like a new man. It’s no more authentic than when I did drag for Southern Decadence in New Orleans by slipping into a black lace Merry Widow and t-strap pumps, it just lets me fit in better with the bankers from Wells Fargo. Of course, some of them would be very impressed with a sassy little Merry Widow, and jealous, to boot, but that’s another story.

Psychic Boyfriends Network

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R Man and I have the luxury of having separate rooms to dress in each morning, which is great, but today it lead to my coming out and discovering that we were both wearing pink, oxford cloth, button down shirts and medium brown khaki pants. I informed him we could not go out of the house looking like we belonged to an odd religious cult that had elevated the Land’s End catalogue to an icon, but he refused to see the logic of my point. He’s like that sometimes. Most times, in fact. I had to go change my shirt.

Things like this just happen a lot when you’ve been together as long as we have. We met 26 years ago in the back room of a really sleazy, but beloved bar in New Orleans and now we finish each other’s sentences. It happens. I adore him, he’s my best friend, but I still think he should change his shirt when I tell him to.

I gotta go