Drag rules to live by


Good day to you all. I hope you are having a splendid day. Sorry, I just had a frittata for lunch and am feeling fancy. The moment has passed. So what’s up? I have been a little under the weather this week. The past few days have been so beautiful outside but all I have wanted to do is stay in bed. I have literally been so worthless and unproductive this week that I should work for Congress.

Speaking of politics, I had to unfriend someone on Facebook this week. She is a Trump supporter, hated Obama and constantly posted things that annoyed me. I kept her as my friend because at one time we were close. Then she said something so ridiculous and stupid that I could take no more. This bitch had the nerve to say Lady Gaga was horrible during the Super Bowl halftime show! Dafuk you say! I have listened to a lot of her hate-filled bullshit and ignored it because you just can’t argue with stupid, but you will not speak ill of Mother Monster. She said she was a horrible singer — I nearly lost my shit! Love her or hate her, you cannot deny her talent. Unfriended and blocked!

I have met Lady Gaga twice, and she was such a positive, awesome, nice person. There was not a hint of bitchiness or diva syndrome to her. Name one other artist that shows up and performs for free at venues that helped her before she was a superstar. The week that “Born This Way” hit No. 1 on the charts, she performed in the Rose Room and at the Round-Up. Her concert was already sold out so it was just a thank-you. She will forever have a place in my heart, not just because I live for her music, but because of how much she has done for the gay community. I adore that crazy woman, and for those of you that said she wasn’t political enough during the halftime show: she sang “Born This Way” in front of Mike Pence. Her lyrics are political enough. You don’t have to rip up a picture of the Pope on live TV to make your point.

Now I would like to give you all a few rules to make sure that when you come out to a drag show you have a good time and don’t piss anybody off.

Rule 1: Stay out of the way. We appreciate your enthusiasm but standing in the aisles can be troublesome. Some of the girls (not me) dance and have choreography. Walking in front of them or going around them might accidently get you punched or elbowed by a death drop or a foot to the face from a high kick. Just be aware of where the entertainers are and wait for them to pass by before you go get your 12th drink.

Rule 2: (and this is a big one for me personally): If you are going to tip, don’t put the money in your mouth and expect us to take it with ours. That’s just gross. Yes, I have put my mouth on much worse, but mouth-money is nasty. I will still take it and spend it gladly but Purell, Purell, Purell.

Rule 3: If you arrive late and stand near the stage, look behind you. If you see someone sitting in a chair or stool, that means they got there early to get a good seat. You just gonna walk in late and stand in the damn way…No! Move, bitch, get outta tha way, get outta tha way bitch, get outta tha way!

Rule 4: If you are with a bachelorette party, please be respectful. We understand that this is a special night for your friend, but this is also the only night many of you will ever be in a gay bar so you get an attitude if we don’t make the entire show about the bride to be. Truth is, we might give you a little shout-out, but our entertainers are getting paid to perform so we don’t need you and your woo-hoo girls to entertain us. Sit back, relax and enjoy the show … hopefully without a scowl on your face. P.S. This does not apply to gay and lesbian bachelor/bachelorette parties. We will always make a big deal out of yours. (Honestly, calling out a bachelor or bachelorette party is totally up to the emcee. Don’t demand it and it will be more fun for everyone.)

Rule 5: Selfie etiquette. In this day of selfies, if you didn’t get a selfie with it, it didn’t happen. Not true. You can actually point the phone or camera towards the object or person you want a picture of, and take a pic without you in it. It’s called “photography.” I know, I know – you wanna be in the pic, too. It’s just the way things are. First off, don’t expect us to stop our number for a selfie if you ain’t tippin’. Secondly, have your shit ready. We do not have time for you to figure out your phone while standing, saying cheese or duck-lipped forever. You get one click then we gotta go. If you messed it up with your fat thumbs or because you have a crappy flip phone, that’s on you, boo.

Rule 6: If you are not having fun, leave. One of my pet peeves is when someone is sitting at our show looking like they are smelling shit (aka stank face). Stank face usually occurs when straight people are forced to be in a gay club where they are clearly uncomfortable. Now, don’t think the gays are immune to stank face. We have been known to have it in groups. We get it, drag is not for everybody. There is a dance floor downstairs; go dance. There is a hot dog vendor on the corner, go eat a dick… sorry, a wiener. There is plenty to do on the block if drag is not your thing.

Rule 7: Be respectful. It takes a lot of courage — and dare I say, balls — to get up on any stage. This goes especially for the Thursday night Rising Star amateur show. Those girls are up-and-coming and may not be as polished as some of the other girls, but I still ask that you respect them. We all start somewhere. So applaud their bravery, applaud their determination. Come back each week and hopefully applaud their growth. Karma is a bitch and so am I. You disrespect one of us, you disrespect us all. Drag is a sisterhood — a dysfunctional and messy family but for some it is everything. Respect my family and I will try to overlook your stank face.

Rule 8 (Which actually should have been Rule 1, but I don’t like to rewrite anything: Have fun. That’s the great thing about a drag show. As a performer, there is no better feeling than seeing the crowd smiling, laughing, singing along and dancing in their seats. If you are having a blast, show it. We feed off it. Sometimes the cheering and applause of an audience can change our mood. We know the show must go on even if we have had a bad day or we are in a bad mood; a great crowd can change everything. It can reverse a bad mood and provide balance to a horrible day. Yes, the tips also help — a heavy purse is always a great thing. But sometimes a great crowd can energize and heal like nothing else. It is easy to get addicted to the endorphins that are released when a crowd cheers for you. So if you are having a good time, let us know it. Life is too short not to enjoy yourself so support your local drag show!

Remember to love more, bitch less and be fabulous! XOXO, Cassie Nova.

If you have a question of comment, email it to AskCassieNova@gmail.com.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February, 17 2017.