>Authentic Pretending with Connie, Carla and Me

>This mini-rant sponsored by TMBG’s Whistling in the Dark.

JL and I watched a couple of movies this weekend. One particularly stuck with me, since I’m beginning another self-realization phase.

Nia Vardalos, from My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and Toni Collette play dinner-theatre performers chased by bad guys into an interesting situation. Connie and Carla run to LA to make a clean break and fall into life as drag queens. The movie has an innocent undertone that reminds me of Private Benjamin or Laverne & Shirley… Or something as equally fun and girly without being too girly.

Connie and Carla transform the sticky-carpet nightclub into a legit dinner theatre by authentically pretending to be female performers. As women, they dress in drag and lower their voices just enough that the men in drag can believe that Connie and Carla are also men in drag. I have a bit of a thing with drag queens. I am fascinated that the performers would go to so much trouble to be female for an evening. Maybe it’s fascinating because I know that I wouldn’t go to that much trouble to be that female for an evening. The tucking and twisting and curling and primping involved is not something that I’d be able to comprehend doing myself.

I feel naked without my 508, but I’m still using 508 because it works. I’m not going to go to the makeup counter and be persuaded to try “this summer’s new shades.” Not going to happen. Don’t get your hopes up.

Back to the movie. The idea of female performers dressing as male female performers hits a little close to home. After all, I’m authentically pretending myself more often than not. I’m an adult pretending to be an adult. I don’t feel like an adult and still give myself the “fake it till you make it” speech almost daily. When do I stop feeling like I’m a kid playing adult?

I’m going to a conference (as an attendee) this weekend. Last summer was the first time I had attended this particular event and I always had an easy icebreaker topic. “This is my first conference. How many of these have you attended? What was it like last year…”

What will my nonsense conversation be this year? Do I really need one? Can I be my authentic self without pretending to be that adult? Am I already that person?

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