Born to be a Hag

Once upon a time, there was a quirky young girl named Natalie. She grew up in a wholesome neighborhood in Oceanside, CA, and, like many Children of the 80s, she was a connoisseur of pop music at a young age. She would often pile on every piece of jewelery she owned, borrow whatever makeup she could swipe from her mother, and dance around to her records with absolutely no regard for who was watching. (Literally. There are home videos to prove it. You've never seen "Heard it to the Grapevine" broken down like this.) Like most young girls of that decade, she had Madonna's True Blue album on repeat and could often be found bobbing along to Debbie Gibson and Tiffany. But she deviated from her peers when it came to her obsession with a few notable pop acts...

Now it wasn't unheard of for kids to collect newspaper (what are those?) clippings and mementos of their favorite bands or movie stars. Bop magazine was to young girls what Playboy would eventually be to young boys: slightly embarrassing to look at, mortifying to actually own, but all sorts of stimulating in ways we were far too young to understand. (Tho, to be fair, I was pretty mesmerized with Playboy too, but in a very different way. I mean, what were all those little cartoons doing anyway, and why did everyone have so much hair on their privates? The 80s were all about extravagant foliage.)

However, most girls don't cultivate a full blown obsession with such...shall we say, "colorful" pop icons...

I was absolutely, circus-freak crazy in love with George Michael (including the greatness that is Wham) and Boy George. I had a paisly-covered photo album chock full o' pics and articles, Mr. Careless Whisper with his perfectly feathered hair and The Boy with his trademark hat and yarn-for-hair 'do. Now this total adoration has nothing to do with my penchant for British guys named George (which is also still alive and well). To be honest, I am still not quite sure what about their 'aesthetic' hit to my core and made me feel all sorts of giddy. But not in a sexual way. In a blissfully happy, carefree, run-around-naked kinda way.

Side note: I have met one other woman who had this same reaction to "The Boys" as I, but there is a very good chance we were separated a birth given a myriad of such similarities, so really it isn't so shocking, nor does it make my fascination any less odd.

So it should some as no surprise that in my adulthood, I seem to find myself close to many fellas of the homoseshual persuasion. It's not like I seek out gay men to round out my circle of friends. It just kind of works out that way. I do have a very well-calibrated gaydar, and I'm not afraid to ask the blunt question when I've got a hunch (which, thank God, has yet to back fire), so maybe that has something to do with it (in that I'm aware of one's sexual orientation while many are not because of the need/preference to hide it).

I have held many a hand during Pride events and coming outs. I feel like there must be something about my countenance that makes people feel that they can trust and lean on me, an assumed quality for which I am so thankful. And I know many will likely disagree with me on this, but I think that part of my walk as a Christian is to be the solid presence in people's lives who are experiencing some sort of turmoil or transition, such as (though certainly not limited to) coming out. Many otherwise meaningless aspects of my past make sense only when they serve me in helping a friend or family member through a tough time, a time in which I would be otherwise ill-equipped to offer much assistance. I have a hard time believing in my heart that these are simply coincidences. Afterall, there has to be a greater reason for fawning over a couple of Marys with voices like buttah.

And yes, I just made the leap from boys in makeup and hot pants to God's plan. That's just how I roll.


  1. Bop magazine! Love it! :-P

  2. My theme song when I was little was "Karma Chameleon" which I thought was "Come-a Chameleon". I feel you!