Watching guys in drag is not, as a rule, one of my favorite forms of entertainment. It strikes me as more than a little embarrassing for all parties involved.
For some reason, sexist or otherwise, women pretending to be guys doesn't generate quite the same awkwardness—even though I must admit to wincing at my first glimpse of my daughter on stage in "The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged)." It wasn't her red one-piece union suit so much as the single strategically placed fig leaf.
When we bought tickets for the local community theatre's annual fundraiser, I knew I would be seeing guys in dresses. The show, "Red, White, and Tuna," is a series of skits held together by a plot thinner than a supermodel. Two actors, with a lot of help from quick-fingered backstage dressers, play all the male and female roles.
Both actors in the local production gave wonderful performances. In fact, they were almost too good. When one of them came out on stage dressed as a plump elderly lady, the person next to me whispered, "That's exactly how my grandma looked!"
The other actor was my daughter's boyfriend. The good news is that he was good. The bad news is that he was good. Frighteningly so. This is the guy my daughter thinks is the most wonderful man ever to walk across a stage. This is a guy who has his own chain saw and loves his welder. This is the potential father of some of my future grandchildren. It was disturbing to see how believable he looked in an ash blonde wig and a peach colored Sunday dress with coordinating purse and size 11 pumps.
After the show, I told him his performance was unnervingly good. He laughed and said, "I've lived with a lot of women."
I'm afraid he meant that to be reassuring.