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Monday, June 27, 2011

Farmer's Market 101

 Believe it or not, we all managed to be awake and on the road to the local Farmer's Market in Lebanon, Mo. 
I will tell you that Brandon was certainly ready for a nap as Noon rolled around.
Above in the first picture, we are setting up our new canopy that we purchased at Wal-Mart. I know, I know......
 This picture shows the Market just starting to wake up. We had the pleasure of meeting a local celebrity while we were there.  The Market Lady was there filming a segment for a local news broadcast.
You can find info on her here www.themarketlady.com

She goes to different Market's and prepares recipes from the produce available. If I am being honest about it, she could have done a bit more with the zucchini  salad.
 The good thing about doing this Market was that it was a perfect way to get our feet wet!
Everybody that walked by the booth had a smile on their faces.
Lot's of compliments came our way as well, and promises that if we came back the following week that we would have more customers.
Here's to next week!!

This is Brandon.  He's just so busy minding the store that he doesn't have time to smile!

We all had a blast and can see this being a regular outlet for us.
We met many nice people and make lots of connections which means we got all the dirt on all the vendors!

That would be all for today!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Queens. What a DRAG.

This evening after we'd celebrated Brandon's 3? birthday, put a shiny BRIGHT coat of YELLOW   paint on (most) of the front of the house, and worked our way past some serious cake eating puffiness, Mark decided to  youtube some video's.
The video he got stuck on was I put a spell on you.  As performed by the amazing artist Screaming Jay Hawkins.

As conversations sometimes go in this house , this one wound up being about Drag Queens.
Mark was remembering a nice old queen that went by La Jessica.
Now La Jessica would perform a version of this song that was so much fun it wouldn't matter if you were a Nazarene minister, or a Sunday Sinner,  you would have danced your damned ass off!





I know that MOST of you have not had the pleasure of befriending these lovely creatures, these heroes in high heels, these ladies of the leotards..
I also understand that most of you like to make fun of these friendly folks that look like their panties may indeed have an EXTRA cotton lining. Or two.

No need, we do that enough of that ourselves! 

While working at the local gay bar in Champaign during the 80's,    I was lucky to see many great ( and some very puke in your hand worthy) performances.
Of course on some nights at C-St, the bouncer may have been a large man in a wheel chair. Dressed with an empty refrigerator  box painted as a house resting over the top of him. With nothing sticking out but his feet at the bottom, wearing of course the Witches socks from the WIZARD OF OZ. It worked great because he'd (of course) cut out windows ( with curtains) and he could look out the window to card you. Legal age was 18 to get into the club. But, I think a FEW snuck in early!

Drag Queens are Drag Queens.
EVERY ONE is DIFFERENT!

It didn't matter if it was the one and only Maggie DeVille who was certain that  'she' did the best 
Annie Lennox  impersonation in  the state.  Any state, name a state.
I knew that at the end of the night when the Mag's was doing her last number that the wig was gonna fly. 

And fly it did.  And so did the crowd. Right into a big gay tizzy!!!

It also didn't matter that just after I BURST OUT of the closet ( it wasn't  difficult, the door was thin)  the first person to hit on me and take me to his place was (unknown to me at the time) a Drag Queen.
One of my all time faves then and now. 
Ladies and gentlemen............. The One, The Only, Mona Montclair.
Diva Extraordinaire.
At least that's what you better call her until she gets to know you better.  The first ten years are the hardest!
Mona and I wound up giggling too much to bump uglies.
Something tells me that is why we still have a terrific friendship after 24 years.
 
Yes, that's right in Drag Math 101 that makes Mona 19.
Off stage, Mona and her partner George are just an average gay couple.
Only they've been together over 20 years.
Well done BITCHES!

I would also like to take a moment to remember a few of the other funny friends I've made. The names may have slipped my mind, but the visions were BURNED PERMANENTLY into my retinas.

The father  and son Drag Queens. 
They were both so sweet  to me while I was working at C-St. And besides, I'd be nice to mule's ass if it'd get me a dollar tip.
Where else could you see a Drag Queen Dad  with a wooden leg being helped up the stairs by his Drag Queen  son. Because Dad........... Mom? ........Dad? Whoever. 
Because the older Drag Queen was too drunk to hop up the stairs.
Sweet Pauline's  Pearls!

Maybe we could talk about the Drag Queen  that was  so sure the crowd was going to hate 'her' when she came on stage and so nervous, that she threw up in her hand. But that didn't stop that little princess.
She flung that goop onto the mirror behind the dance floor and kept on going.
That's the SPIRIT!

Now, go clean your puke off the glass.
Dirty little girl!
And you  wonder why nobody wants to come and kiss your puke smelling face or give you a dollar?
 Please!

The costumes were really a fantastical,  fun, beautiful, scary, amazing part of every show. 
It was dumbfounding  what  the Late Great
Terri Hammrick could do with a Kentucky Fried Chicken bucket, a hot glue gun, and a few sequins.

Or what the Late Great , One and Only,
Ruby Falls could do with a feather boa. Or where he could put it!
"Ruby" and I shared the same birthday's, 
Valentines Day.
One year Ruby made the whole bar sing Happy Birthday to the two us. Of course it was during a Valentine's Day Drag Show.

I won't soon forget being serenaded by the  largest crowd of welcoming, , non-judging, equal minded, 
free spirited, awe inspiring, love giving, EQUAL people in my life.
 I suppose I should end my stroll down memory Drag lane for now.

Don't think that I've forgotten for one second about you silly lesbians getting all dressed up in men's clothes and pretending to be KENNY ROGERS. Because I haven't.
I should remember to tell you the story about my Aunt Glenda. She wasn't a Drag Queen by any means, but quite possibly she could have been a Good Witch.
She did however have a wooden leg.
Til next time............ get your DIVA on!

































Friday, June 10, 2011

Aunt Opal's Pickles....... they were the DILL!

It's funny how something as simple as opening a jar of pickles is like opening a world of  memories.
The smell of the garlic, the dill and those DELICIOUS home made pickles.
The memories of being at my Great Aunt Opal's on any of the numerous occasions, and never heading home without at least one (more) pickle.
I remember the summer kitchen and the families working on canning in the fantastic Bootheel heat.
I know now that it was more about the time spent together than it was about getting the pantry full of canned goods. I do know that Aunt Opal's pantry was always full.
Unfortunately all I remember are those damned pickles!!!
When I had first moved to Illinois and would make a weekend trip home, Aunt Op-Op (thanks Matty) would always send me out the door with at least two jars of goodness! I would like to think that during all those trips and all those pickles that I had shared them with Mark at least once.
But I sure can't guarantee it!
I really need to get  in touch with some of the family and try to get her recipe.
Not that my canning could ever compare to hers!

We can't speak of dear Opal and not mention her husband, Roy.
He had a great Baritone voice that you were sure even the Lord heard on Sunday mornings!
I believe it was in the 5th grade, in Caruthersville, that we had to write a report about one of our relatives. I chose Uncle Roy and the story that he told of his time during the war.
About how one of his comrades had stepped on a mine while they were running into a field.
That may have been the first A+  that I ever received on a homework assignment.
I need to check with Mom and Dad and see if they still have the report that I did.
Something tells me they might.
I suppose I should go now and clean the pickle juice off the keyboard.
Aunt Opal and Uncle Roy Gill, you were thought of today. And missed often.
Because of you, we know where the GREAT comes from.