Every Monday night, RuPaul hosts a TV show that airs on the Logo Channel, a TV network (or netwerq) that is geared toward the pink side of the cable viewer, and is all gay, all day! Trust me when I say our programs are way racier than yours, the raciest being RuPaul’s aptly named Drag Race. The reality/contest show is, for all intents and purposes, “America’s Next Top Tranny.” DR’s basic premise is using skill and wit to outsmart the competition, then at the end, someone is voted off––’cept it be real gay. For instance, Ru starts the show with a video “shemail” to let the contesting queens (14 to start) know what the day’s mini challenge is––the last episode I saw, it was to put makeup on in the dark. The winner chooses teams for the day’s big challenge, which dominates the rest of the episode, and is your basic “who’s smarter, better and,” in this series, “cuntier.” Past challenges include photo shoots, standup comedy and singing––and queens, you better listen to Ru’s tag line: “Don’t fuck it up!”
So, they do the challenge, hilarity ensues, we laugh, we cry, we cheer and hiss, then the gurls walk a runway and are judged on the outcome of their labors. The judges are usually the A-list of the B-list celebrities: Chaz Bono (who came out of Cher’s vagina), noted contestant Alaska Thunder Fuck, Latoya Jackson, Juliette Lewis, Chloë Sevigny and more, who all play their respective reality show duties of being overly critical and bitchy. They narrow it down to two girls who “lip sync for their lives” till the winner is told, “shanty, you stay” and the one who “fucked it up’’ is told to “sashay away.” It’s very dramatic, and at the risk of receiving a mail bomb, very Tyra Banks.
I am asked frequently if I’ve thought of auditioning, and the answer is simply, FUCK NO! This could possibly be my worst nightmare. First off, I don’t even have the drag queen aesthetic––being able to paint and contour your face like that is really an art, one I truly am in awe of. The hair a mile high, the padding, the costumes––these ladies spend a lot of time and effort on themselves, and quite frankly, it takes me two hours to get ready: one to sit around bitching about how I don’t wanna get ready and one to hurry, throw something on and get out the door.
Then there’s the competitive side that brings out the worst in some people. Don’t get me wrong, I live to catfight with the best of them, but there are a couple queens on this show who fight nonstop. I can’t help but zone out after two minutes. To sit around and listen to that, day in and day out––a bitch would go postal. Also, sitting in front of a panel pointing out my flaws would send me running and crying out of the room. Lastly, I have some sort of mental problem that prohibits me from lip syncing, so doing that in competition is out of the question.
Even though I would not do it, I get why some would and, in fact, one of my friends in San Francisco did. Honey Mahogany is a fellow performer who runs in my circle of friends. She is a stunning beauty and singer who rules the gay scene––I was ever amazed at the hundreds of invites I got from her on a monthly basis for some event or another, so it came as no surprise when the news broke she was on the upcoming season of Drag Race. Out of loyalty, I recruited all my friends to Team Honey, and we faithfully headed down to Try-Angles at about 900 S. and 300 W. to cheer her on. She was fabulous and looked gorgeous, and unfortunately, didn’t last long. The odds stacked against her one too many times, and through no fault but misfortune, she sashayed away and the world didn’t get to actually see the superstar.
Honey hosts a club in the heart of the Castro district every Monday called Mahogany Mondays, where she and a guest host will show the week’s episode, then during commercial, chat about what we’ve just seen and give anecdotes and “isms” about her experiences on the show. I went to interview her and find out all about the lady behind the diva. I actually most enjoyed being in her presence and going out after for a gin-soaked good time, running into one of the other contestants, Detox, and having a good ol’ fashioned girls’ night out with probably the nicest queen I’ve ever met. It was then that I realized she is the girl who has it all: beauty, talent and brains, and just because she’s not reality TV material doesn’t mean that Honey Mahogany won’t become a household name.
What I admire most about Honey and all the other queens on the show is they are taking a risk and putting themselves out there, and to that I say, “You better werq!” Come see who wins every Monday at Try-Angles. Go to itshoney.com to learn more about Ms. Honey and see her music video.