When I joined Regis Philbin on his show, he wouldn't give me Kathy Lee's old dressing room. He said I "have to earn it." Now he has me doing crappy fluff pieces in local rags (like this one) to "raise our demographic." I guess there aren't enough homos watching us, so now I am stuck interviewing Portland's Sissyboy about the state of queer culture these days. I invited Splendora, Precious Hottest She-Male, and Zebra to chat with me at my favorite Starbucks last Saturday. Unfortunately, it was really busy so we had to go to the one across the street. The minute they walked in the door my nipples got hard; each of the Sissyboys was fierce, fashionable, and flawless. Before they sat down with me, Precious slapped a counter girl and Zebra ate a pastry out of the trash. These girls were really something else.
Kelly Ripa: Hi Sissyboys!
Ripa: You know, I did my homework on you guys and I have to say, I just loved your Lifetime original movie; the one where you starved yourself like Karen Carpenter. It was so funny!
Precious: We don't have a Lifetime movie.
Splendora: I think that was Judith Light.
Ripa: Are you sure? I know one of you has an eating disorder.
Zebra: You're thinking of Bolimianne Rhapsody. It is very tacky of you to bring it up. And it was Meredith Baxter, not Judith Light.
Splendora: You know, Bolimianne is a big fan of yours. She thought you were coming to our show, but she was just drunk.
Precious: She's always drunk.
Ripa: So are Regis and Donald Trump. Anyway, how are you?
Precious: Uh, you just asked us that, you twit. Try and keep up. But, since you asked, again, we look good and that's all that matters. What do you want to know?
Ripa: Oh, I'm supposed to ask you some questions... like where are you now?
Ripa: Oh you Sissyboys are so funny! Even I know we're in Portland, but where are YOU now? Like gay culture. I haven't heard anything about "gay marriage" in a while.
Zebra: Well Kelly, queer culture is at a really interesting place right now, and Portland is an excellent example. We are finally at a place where the male-female gender binary has broken down into many subgroups. Being queer is all about choices. Gay, lesbian, and transgender are just the beginning. Nowadays it is all about the pronoun you choose. You can have a vagina and love it, but still have people refer to you as "he" and "mister."
Splendora: Vagina? Yuck!
Ripa: Hey, I have one of those you know!
Precious: I am terribly sorry.
Zebra: In some ways, all these subgroups have created cracks in the unity of gay culture. Everyone is so busy defining themselves we have forgotten that we are all under the big umbrella that is gay culture. It's important that we stay unified in these oppressive times.
Splendora: Yes, the gays need an umbrella. It rains in Portland all the time.
Precious: Are we done yet?
Ripa: What do you think, Precious, about gay culture in Portland?
Precious: You'd think gayness was a disease or something. There are so many. You can't throw your handbag without hitting one.
Splendora: The gays here are cute, but there are a shit-ton of gay folks here and gay is a really broad term for what goes on within these city walls.
Ripa: What do you mean?
Splendora: Well, there's the standard gay: the one who puts on the latest fashion, wears boy make-up, goes to the bar and drinks rum and cokes, snorts some white drugs, and gets laid. You know, typical looks, nice hair and teeth and all that.
Precious: The kind they clone from vats below the Silverado. It's revolting.
Ripa: I love those guys!
Precious: You would.
Splendora: I dunno, I can't really relate to them, but they are fun to watch.
Ripa: I think they are sexy.
Precious: You would.
Splendora: It gets old.
Ripa: So what's new in the gay scene?
Splendora: There is a fucked-up queer pirate scene going on.
Splendora: Well, some of the more alternative queers have taken over straight bars and do queer nights. It takes the gay scene outta the box it's been in for so long and gives us something else to do.
Ripa: What do you mean?
Splendora: In Portland, Stark Street—or Vaseline Alley as it's called—is where the gay culture set up shop in the heyday of the gay day, but for some queers that era is over. It's more fun to find some dive bar with cheap beer, tattooed and pierced hotties and tranny folks, and dance to some underground licks.
Ripa: You lick each other?
Precious: Yeah, we lick each other. It's a little like that time you and Regis went to Niagara Falls and you got lost in the petting zoo.
Splendora: Last week I peed in a girl's boot, and then she peed all over me, so there's more than licking going on. But it's really not about that, it's really about giving the more bohemian queer artists a place to play.
Precious: It's a petting zoo, with booze.
Zebra: Hey, it's a fact that Portland gays are way more entertaining than the straight people. In fact, we should put all the gays in the Oregon Zoo and free the animals. Then the straight people could pay money to watch us be cooler than them!
Ripa: I'd pay to see that!
Splendora: Zebra, that's oppressive. No one wants to pay money to watch the Portland queers pee on each other in cages.
Ripa: Regis pees himself all the time! Oh, did I say that out loud?
Splendora: You did, but no one is surprised.
Precious: That was totally TMI. Kelly is kind of dumb, isn't she?
Splendora: I think she's cute.
Ripa: I'm right here. Uh, hello.
Precious: I know.
Zebra: Hey girls, you want to go get some bento?
Splendora: And a cocktail?
Precious: See you Ripa, this interview bores me.
Zebra: We're done.
Splendora: Bye Kelly, call me.