Eureka O’Hara : RuPaul’s Drag Race Season Nine Profile

Of all the drag queens I have seen on RuPaul’s Drag Race, Eureka O’Hara has got to be one of the most mathematically named. (Get it?) She also has the biggest selection of things in a shop

Eureka is all of twenty-six years old and hails from Tennessee. I wonder how long it will be before someone tells her that she’s the only ten they see. (Am I dating myself?)

Amazingly, Eureka was with a friend and got hit by a drunk driver — how cars don’t all come with built in technology to prevent drunk drivers from driving is beyond me — but thankfully she walked away without a scratch

She recently was with her mother in the hospital — send your love to her family!

Eureka is hardly new to the drag scene, having won accolades including Miss Tennessee International in 2010 among other honors

Enjoy a video from a few years ago :

The season nine premiere is a week from today and has moved to VH1. No sign that they are going to do any Behind the Drag specials. (Have I dated myself enough?

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Charlie Hides : RuPaul’s Drag Race Season Nine Profile

Charlie Hides — the name conjures many images in my mind but the most prominent one is of someone who is, well… hiding! Some people who see a drag queen see a person who is hiding, disguising who they really are. Of course on the surface this makes sense — out of drag they look entirely different. But is it really the case?

I read an interview with Charlie and loved this line :

I’m inspired by lots of things, music, art, comedy, design… you name it. I love old movies, coffee table art books, second hand shops and the latest couture collections, current pop music and rock classics. Creating makes me happy, the process that begins with having an idea then working till it becomes real makes me happy.

If you know anything about me it’s that creating makes me happy. (I wrote a novella called Kate, did you know?)

I look forward to seeing how Charlie will do this season!

Aja : RuPaul’s Drag Race Season Nine Profile

This year on RuPaul’s Drag Race there are four, count them, four different queens from New York (where I presently live) and one of them is the inimitable Aja, who calls her style of performance “Powerpuff Girl Stripper” and was named Ms. Williamsburg in 2014.

Furry monsters 💖 Photo by @ericrichardmagnussen HAIR by @queenlmnop

A post shared by AJA (@ajathekween) on

While doing the research for this profile I was surprised that I already had come across Aja’s name in passing… last year, when Season Eight was wrapping up, as you can see here in this conversation with Thorgy Thor.

Will Aja come out on top? Will it be another New York win this year?

Juice Dealer (a short two character scene)

A man is standing on a street corner, looking around. He is a dealer in all things power.
Dealer : Charge your phone! Charge your tablet! Charging…
A man passes by him and stops. He reaches into his pocket.
Man : Did you say you charge phones?
Dealer: I do! What can I charge for you?
Man : My phone is dying… I don’t mean to sound morbid of course. Could you charge it?
Dealer : that’s all I do! Let me see your phone.
Man : What are your rates?
Dealer : Why concern yourself with that now? Do you need your phone charged or not?
Man : I suppose you have a good point.
The man gives over his phone, which is attached to a battery. They stay quiet for about half a minute.
Dealer : Okay, you are all charged.
Man : That’s impossible! (He looks at his phone.) How did you do it?
Dealer : As I said, it’s what I do. That’ll be a hundred dollars.
Man : You must be kidding! That’s outrageous! Why didn’t you say it would be so expensive?!
Dealer : Cost is relative. A dollar is expensive if you’re living on the street and it’s all that’s standing between you and starvation. A hundred dollars, please.
Man : But I don’t have a hundred dollars!
Dealer : That’s rather unfortunate. I’m going to have to keep your phone. Well… there is an alternative.
Man : Which is what?
Dealer : Are you a believing man?
Man : I’m not sure I follow. What do you want, my soul for eternity?
Dealer : No. Seven years — and they will be unpleasant!
Man : Hey, whatever it takes — I just want my phone back.
The dealer takes out a tablet and jabs the man with a stylus. The man howls in pain.
The man walks away with his phone, holding his wrist.
Dealer, to himself : Works every time!

The Compound Effect Review

There is a genre of non-fiction books known as personal development, or sometimes known as self-help — though the two are not always necessarily the same thing. Self-help sometimes means that you are working on “fixing” something that is not quite right with you whereas a book of personal development is useful overall to help you be a better person every day.

The one book to which I keep on returning — yes, this is the kind of book that bears rereading — is The Compound Effect, by Darren Hardy. You can find it on Amazon here :

The thing about the book that is so amazing is that it is so very simple — and the message is just that every action you take might seem like it has an incredibly small effect on your being but over time the actions compound. An example he gives in the book is that of three people who are identical in terms of height, weight, physical fitness, etc. One of them starts working out a few times a week and watching what he eats and one of them does basically the opposite — adds a donut here and there, starts drinking with every meal (a strong beverage, mind you), and takes measures to make as little physical effort as possible. The third does nothing.

In the days following, even a few weeks out you don’t see much change but as weeks turn into months you start to see how one of them is getting fitter and one of them is putting on weight and getting out of shape. Not because of one donut — but because of the compound effect of all of the donuts over a period of time.

Every decision we make has an impact. Think about that and take time to read The Compound Effect. It is well worth it. If you like the book, the author has a daily e-mail called Darren Daily where he sends words of inspiration as well as practical advice and steps you can put into practice to make use of that advice — the best kind of advice is the kind you can really use, after all.

Fiction : The Interview

Peter had been nervous about this job interview and with good reason — he had been out of work for a couple of months and he and his wife were struggling to make ends meet. They had been both doing some freelance work on the side and they were grateful for that but this job would make an immense difference in their lives for the better.

snake playing card courtesy of https://morguefile.com/creative/lauramusikanski

It had been going pretty well and Peter sat and looked as the interviewer looked over his C.V.

The interviewer said, “I must say I am quite pleased with your qualifications and it seems you would be a great fit for the organization.”

Peter said, “Thank you.”

“That being the case, there is one final question that I need to ask you. What house are you in?”

“I beg your pardon?”

The interviewer poured water into a short glass. “You’re familiar with the Harry Potter books and films, surely?”

“I am, but I don’t see how this…”

“And being familiar with Potter lore, I imagine you may have found yourself taking online tests… like ones that determine in which house the famous Sorting Hat would sort you, if you were a student at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.”

Peter took the large glass pitcher and poured some water for himself before taking a sip. Was this a joke?

“I’m afraid that I don’t know the tests you are referring to, sir.”

“Well Peter,” the interviewer said, “There is no real sorting hat to speak of, naturally. What these online tests do is to ask you a series of questions and based on what kind of person the test determines you to be, it sorts you into the appropriate house. We would like to know what house would be appropriate for you.”

Peter looked at the the interviewer, who did not blink.

“Is this really necessary? It doesn’t seem like it is at all relevant to…”

“Peter let me take you to one of our empty cubicles. I have a computer set up and you can take the test right there.”

“I’m a Slytherin! A Slytherin, okay?”

The interviewer looked over the paperwork in front of him and shook his head, making some marks.

“Thank you for coming in,” said the interviewer, “while we were really looking for a Hufflepuff, we will certainly be in contact with you should an appropriate position become available.”

They never called.

Improving Your Wait Time Starts Within!

For many people, waiting in line (or waiting for an elevator, waiting on hold when you need to get through to customer service…) is one of the worst things in the world — and for me this used to be the case as well. I have learned over time to make the best of the time that I must spend in line, and I would like to pass on what I now do that helps me.

The Romanian word răbdare, which roughly means patience, comes from the word răbda which seems to mean to accept, to tolerate, to endure. The word patience, incidentally, comes from the Latin word pati, which means to suffer. That about sums up my five year old son’s experiences with it when I request he has it!

The thing you should not do while waiting is to obsess over how long it has been that you have been doing so. When you do this you accomplish nothing other than aggravate yourself.

Breathing — I have written before about the wonders of the 4-7-8 technique for helping one get to sleep at night but it works wonderfully when one has an indeterminate wait. The technique, once more:

First, you exhale all the air from your mouth, as much as you can.
Take a breath in through your nose, and count to four in your head as you do this. Stop at four.
Hold that breath for a count of seven seconds.
Exhale the breath through your mouth for a count of eight seconds. You may wonder how you can exhale eight seconds worth of air when you only breathed in for four, but it’s perfectly feasible.
Repeat this two more times – in four, hold seven, out eight. In four, hold seven, out eight.

When I was younger and would get upset, my mother often reminded me that I should breathe in through my nose and out through my mouth, slowly. Not only does breathing in through your nose help prevent illness (those nose hairs do a world of good, you know) but it is inherently slower and more deliberate.

Read! I have a small black bag that I take most everywhere and in it at least one book is always found. There are millions of books out there waiting to be read and so much to be learned, as well as a world of fiction to enjoy.

Be present! Look around and appreciate where and when you are. Who are the other people in the line with you? These are people you may never see again in your life, assuming that you don’t live in a town with a hundred and fifty-eight people where everyone knows everyone else. My grandfather would say when looking about, how many shades of green do you see? The world is an amazing and beautiful place if we allow ourselves to appreciate it fully.