“Great boobs!” he said. His gay spouse of 27 years, standing next to him, smiling ear to ear, concurred, “Those are some great boobs!”
They ran up to meet “her,” the “woman” with the great breasts.
I witnessed it all, I took it all in, as I stood at Wedgewood Baptist Church’s table at Pride Charlotte on Saturday, August 27. Normally our table is on the main drag (no pun intended),
Main drag, Pride Charlotte 2011
but this year we got stuck off to the side. Actually, it turned out to be a great location for – for seeing great boobs.
I like to say that I am the luckiest pastor in the world. I am. And one of the reasons is I get to have conversations that other pastors don’t get to enjoy. How many pastors luck up and participate in “great boob conversations” with gay guys?
Wedgewood’s table was positioned behind the main stage, the stage on which many drag queens performed. We got to see them prepare to go on stage and to bask in all their glory after they exited the stage.
One drag queen in particular caught our eyes. We were totally befuddled. How could anybody do make up/dress up and get boobs like that? Her dress was such that we could see a lot of cleavage and we didn’t see anything that would indicate fakeness other than “everything” was just too – well, perfect.
How did “she” do it? Did “she” glue boobs on seamlessly? They sure weren’t stuffed. Had “she” gone to the trouble of having breast augmentation surgery? Wow, that would be interesting. We were confused. Are they real? Are they fake? Me and the gay guys speculated.
And then “she” came over to the Wedgewood table and spoke to me, whispering in my ear. She said, “my stage name is (feminine name).” And after a pregnant pause, “and my real name is (feminine name).”
“She” walked off. I huddled with the gay Wedgewoodians. “Maybe,” someone said, “he is transgendered. Perhaps he is transitioning to a she.”
And homophobic heterosexuals think the world is black and white, binary, made up of heterosexuals and homosexuals. The truth is the world is a zoo. There is great diversity in terms of sexual orientation and gender identity.
Being formerly homophobic and knowing how homophobic heterosexuals think, in the past I’ve been a little concerned that drag queens and Pride festivals feed the homophobic notion that sexual and gender minorities are freaks.
Most gay people I know are as “normal” and boring as the heterosexual population. I want homophobic Christians to meet the “ordinary” gay folk I know and maybe they can be jolted out of their ignorance and wrongness. On the other hand, more and more I am appreciating the drag queens. For one thing, they do not allow us to put life into simple categories.
Dancing Theology In Fetish Boots is a collection of essays written in honor of Marcella Althaus-Reid who, unfortunately, died recently of breast cancer. Dr. Althaus-Reid, in my opinion and the opinion of others, was the foremost Queer theologian. Her theology refused to be sanitized. She called us to focus on “drag queens as the places where Christic realities may be lived out.” “Marcella believed that theology had to be built on earthquakes and that its job was not to heal the ruptures that seismic shifts create but rather to engage with and encourage the discontinuity.” (Lisa Isherwood) Marcella called us to transgress the boundaries of “decent” theologies that ignore the “hierarchical binaries of the sexual pyramid” and to celebrate the “messiness of queer sexualities.” (Robert Shore-Goss)
There is in our country a movement to deny homosexuals equal rights. Sadly, many sexual and gender minority people aren’t even included in the conversation. When we allow homophobic heterosexuals to boil it down to straight and gay, when we don’t force them to deal with all the evidence, we marginalize the most marginalized of the marginalized.
I join the Wedgewood gay men in saying “Great boobs!”