With all of the ink being spilled over Miss California Carrie Prejean's inconsequential opinion about gay marriage, it's fun to finally see some fur flying in the uptight world of pageantry.
Fortunately, Portland has its own set of beauty queens—drag, that is—who don't take themselves quite so seriously. And you won't find any wannabe Anita Bryants among this bunch. Far from it.
Most Portlanders are aware that our city boasts one of the country's longest-running drag bars, Darcelle XV. What you might not know is that we also have a 50-year-old "court system," the Imperial Sovereign Rose Court, that bestows a plethora of regal titles to queens (and kings) of all stripes.
So, just how familiar are you with Portland's drag stars? Test yourself out by matching these handsome gents with their corresponding alter egos.
Clue: Years after winning the title Rosebud XIII, she's coaching future drag stars as hostess of RuPaul's Drag Race: Portland Edition.
Answer: Kevin Cook, aka Poison Waters, is a weekend mainstay at Darcelle's, but also enjoys entertaining "little old Republican rich white ladies" at suburban charitable events. "They just love it," Poison dishes. "Non-offensive, smart humor is universal, especially nowadays. Everybody just wants to have a good time."
Clue: This drag queen named herself after her home country in South America—and her grandma's cat.
Answer: Answer: Meesha Peru, AKA Carlos Quezada, was the Rose City's first Miss Gay Latino as well as the first Latina to be crowned La Femme Magnifique. Hostess of Silverado's Latino Night every Wednesday, Meesha recalls gender-fucking with a drunken straight guy. "He swore I was a girl and started teasing me," so she shut him up by offering, "Dude, do you want to feel my mangina?"
Clue: A rising star on the Portland drag scene, she frequently performs at Boxxes/Red Cap Garage.
Answer: Sabel Scities, aka Tim Byars, is among the frontrunners competing in RuPaul's Drag Race: Portland Edition. (The winner will be crowned June 14 at Red Cap Garage.) Sabel says the strangest question she was ever asked at a pageant was, "If you were a fruit, what kind of fruit would you be?" Her answer: "A coconut. Because they're hard and hairy on the outside, and soft and juicy on the inside!"
Clue: This broad blew in from the Windy City.
Answer: Roxie Hart, aka Bradley Coppola, is obviously a big fan of the musical Chicago. "I literally flipped a coin between Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart. The gods chose Roxie. It's a good drag name for me. Roxie is very much a malicious vixen—a sort of 'hooker with a heart of gold' kinda gal. That's me in drag."
Clue: This old lady's been scorching Portland drag stages for upward of three decades, and has the palace to prove it!
Answer: Walter Cole, aka Darcelle XV, is proprietress divine of the 43-year-old drag den Darcelle's in Old Town. While prepping for a busy summer season of tourists and bachelorette parties, Darcelle revealed where she got her name: Denise Darcele, a movie and cabaret star from Paris who worked with her longtime partner, Roxy LeRoy.