Sunday, March 30, 2008
I consider myself an open minded person. I feel lucky to say that I have always enjoyed the company of people from different cultures. But until this week there was a culture I hadn't been exposed to.
At my former job these two Mennonite girls would come in, and I would always be scared to talk to them. If it had been anyone else I wouldn't have hesitated to approach them and ask them questions. I didn't know a thing about Mennonites and I guess that is part of the reason I was scared to talk to them. I didn't want to be a babbling idiot, and feel completely ignorant for not knowing anything about their culture.
Thanks to Ester at the bakery, the wonderful Mennonite lady next to the church and Mr. Yoder, I now feel more educated and privileged to be have been able to spend time with such kind people.
Mr. Mallory said that the people in Auburn are always there for each other. After just spending a few weeks there, I believe him.
Auburn is one of those towns that you could drive right passed and never knew it was there. I feel lucky to know that it is there and to have met the amazing community within it. I still have a week left of shooting there, wish me luck!
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
Blankets and curtains locked in the aroma of a perfume cocktail and burning cigarettes in the makeshift backstage changing area at Ellis Place on Saturday night. Homemade sequin dresses covered in clear plastic hung on a paint-chipped coat rack. Wigs of every color and length held their shape on mannequin heads that rhythmically lined the booth chairs. Costume jewelry and glamorous four-inch high heels were piled up here and there on the tile floor. Four magnifying mirrors blinked their incandescent light into an endless variety of makeup overflowed the tabletops.
“Fifteen minutes ‘til show time,” James “Chardonnay Divine” Jackson, 23, the Cabaret LaCage Director, announced at 8:45p.m. The clatter of heels grew more rapid as the performers adjusted their pantyhose, zipped up their dresses, flipped over their wigs and did one last makeup check.
“When I went to my first drag show,”
Jackson recalls, “I was weirded out and
intrigued at the same time. I had a hard time understanding that those performers were not actually women all the time.”
For the past year and a half, Jackson has been performing at Ellis Place once a month.
“It’s like acting for me,” Jackson said. “I am a different character in the physical and emotional sense for just one night. I love being a boy. I live the boy. I wear boy clothes every day, except for that one night a month.”
“We do this to entertain. Bowling Green needs a club like this,” Jackson said. “Most bars cater to a certain crowd, but this is the one place we take anybody. It doesn’t matter if you are gay, straight, black, white or whatever, it is a spot once a month that people can come out and be together.”
The seats were now full, the bar was buzzing, and members of the audience had pockets full of one-dollar bills ready to tip. Show time!