You Better Work

I always forget how much I love Peter Murphy.  He came on the radio this morning, and I remembered.

I never forget how much I love RuPaul.

RuPaul came to my attention in the 80s, a couple of years before he popped up dancing in a B-52s video.  I can’t remember how I knew of him–it probably had something to do with my Andy Warhol obsession.  I remember being excited that he’d made it into a music video.  And you know that his song Supermodel was my interior theme music, don’t you?

I loved his look, loved his act, loved his charisma (and his uniqueness, nerve, and talent.)  It wasn’t until the internet that I got to find out how much I love his attitude.  RuPaul presents a lovely personhood.  I haven’t ever met him, so I can’t vouch for how closely life imitates his art, but I buy into his public worldview 100%.

I saw this video of him being interviewed by Joan Rivers, today.  Love him.  Adore him.  Wish he was my friend.

My take away from this video came from him talking about how he felt like drag was a celebration.  He said that dressing up in whatever way you like to dress up (meaning that drag isn’t the only way to do this–for you, it might mean a 3 piece suit) is a compliment to the creator, a way of saying about your body, “I love it! I’m going to decorate it!”

I love it!  I’m going to decorate it!

I love that.

When you move into a new space, what’s the first thing you want to do?  After taking a nap because moving is exhausting, I mean.  You want to decorate.  Whether that means going all in with paint and textiles, and furniture, and your Pinterest board alight, or it means just taping up your Farrah poster, you want to make the space yours.  And that’s all style is.  Style is just making the space of your body yours.

I had some extra time this morning, so I “decorated” my hair more than usual.  I feel like I have a party on my head =)  It feels good!

Here are a few of my favorite RuPaul quotes:

  • “If you don’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?”


  • “Be very careful of what you allow to infiltrate your consciousness and subconsciousness. When you watch too much television, you’ll start to feel inferior from all the commercials hard selling the idea that you’re not complete unless you buy their product […] The ad agencies appeal to your fear of not being wanted or loved. It’s the same with the local news. They get you to stay tuned with a constant stream of fear tactics […] It’s as if our culture is addicted to fear and the flat screen is our drug dealer. Don’t allow that crap into your head!”


  • “If you have goals and the stick-with-it-ness to make things happen, people will feel threatened by you, especially if your goals don’t include them. They believe that if you take a piece of pie, then that leaves less pie for them. Seeing you follow your dreams leaves them realizing that they’re not following theirs. In truth, there is unlimited pie for everyone!”


  • “I’m six foot four – hello. And with hair, heels, and attitude… I’m through the mother-freakin’ roof!”


  • “Look at me–a big old black man under all of this makeup, and if I can look beautiful, so can you.”


  • “My attitude toward friendship has remained the same. I will support and encourage you with all the love in my heart, but if it’s not reciprocal, I gotta go […] If your friends are bitter about your success to the extent that they act out, don’t expect them to change […] Move on.”


  • “My goal is to always come from a place of love …but sometimes you just have to break it down for a motherfucker.”


  • “True wealth is having a healthy mind, body, and spirit. True wealth is having the knowledge to maneuver and navigate the mental obstacles that inhibit your ability to soar.”


  • “We’re born naked, and the rest is drag.”


  • “Whatever you proclaim as your identity here in the material realm is also your drag. You are not your religion. You are not your skin color. You are not your gender, your politics, your career, or your marital status. You are none of the superficial things that this world deems important. The real you is the energy force that created the entire universe!”


  • “When the going gets tough, the tough reinvent.”


  • “When you become the image of your own imagination, it’s the most powerful thing you could ever do.”


  • “With hair, heels, and attitude, honey, I am through the roof.”


  • “All sins are forgiven once you start making a lot of money.” 


  • When I think about my Glamazon, would that character get down if someone said her thighs were heavy? No, she knows what other people think is none of her damn business.”


  • “Very little is off -limits, but draw the line at being unkind.”

3 thoughts on “You Better Work”

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