Recent discussion with my friends has taught me that it’s true—nobody ever really becomes a grownup. There are entire books written on this subject, as well as people’s desperate attempts to try and prove that they are grownups, which almost always backfire somehow.
Allow me to demonstrate—using farts.
Something that has always endeared Uji to me is that he is extremely polite. So much so that in the six months we have known each other, he has never farted in front of me. He always excuses himself to the bathroom. Imagine his consternation when I explained to him that the acoustics of tile floors and shower-board only serve to amplify the offending noise, and that a toilet bowl is really just a parabolic dish for increasing flatulent resonance. “Really?” He asked, mortified.
There are some of my friends who don’t actually feel the need to be grown-up, who talk constantly about farts (Suzy Q is one of them, and occasionally gives me a detailed recap of one I missed.) Others of my friends don’t tell anyone, and we all suffer for their silence. Prime examples: Dork-In-Law, Omi, and the Koschka.
Shopping with the Koschka is like a dream come true for me; he knows what he wants, where he wants it from, and he is focused on exactly that for the duration of the trip, which is expedient and relatively painless. Shopping with Suzy Q is the exact opposite of this and results in a minor nervous breakdown and sore feet.
Shopping with both of them is mildly better, because I have someone to suffer with me, and it’s fun to drag a little gay man into horrid girly stores—especially the Koschka, who abhors anything and everything swish.
So last October, when Suzy Q decided it was time to raid the local Charlotte Russe for costume jewelry (she’s in a show or getting ready for one at any given time) I dragged the Koschka along. He showed up in his regulation pea coat and black tie, and I wore my winter getup, which gets me accused of looking like a Bolshevik.
Suzy Q had something tweed on without making it look tweedy, and red lipstick because it was winter and she does that.
Needless to say, the girls behind the counter sort of glowered at us all when we came in, for not looking like the rest of their customers and because the phrases “Oh, God, why?” and “That’s terrible” kept falling out of our mouths in relation to the merchandise.
At one point, Koschka demonstrated his tactic for dealing with unpleasant situations, which he will never complain about as they are occurring, but rather he will act in a way that states his displeasure without actually implicating himself as a dissident. In this case, it was to let an SBD in the feathered-earring section and then walk away. “You should come over here,” he suggested to me.
“You farted, didn’t you?”
About this time, two girls walked through the stench and muttered to each other, “I thought a girls’ store was supposed to smell nice!” Suzy Q immediately recognized what was happening, and we had to leave the store because we were laughing too hard.
This event has burnt itself into our collective psyche—now, when I need something gaudy and cheap, we go to Fartlotte Russe.
There really is no growing up for some of us.