Princess Kennedy: Beers, Boys and Birthdays

Photo: Talyn Sherer

Beer is a subject near and dear to the hearts of Salt Lake. I hated beer not too long ago—in fact, it was safe to say that I probably had my first when I moved here. I was a cocktail gal, a three-martini luncher—a bloody mary, if you will. Beer terrified me: It was a loaf of bread in a glass, and tasted like piss.
I realized, upon moving to the 801, that getting a mixed drink was, if nothing else, an insult. I wanted the bartender to measure out my allotted portion of alcohol and thought they were kidding when I got my drink. Then I came to the realization that a beer and a shot was the way to get the most bang for my buck.

The years have passed, and I now have acquired a love for the brews. I understand the social nature behind the ritual—I love a “cold one” on a hot day. I even tried making beer once for the Beer Issue a few years back. I got all artsy and gay on it, making it with lemon and hints of lavender—every girl who tasted it loved it, and every guy wanted to know why it tasted like old-lady soap. My secret ingredient was the mushrooms: the ones I took while formulating my yeasty potion—fail.

What seems to be a key factor for me in choosing a beer is the marketing. I hate to say it, but I’m a sucker for a good ad campaign, and whether I’m hanging out with friends or at the bar, you can guarantee I’ll have a Pabst Blue Ribbon in my hand. I’m not sure how or when this even happened, but the fact of the matter is, if I’m stocking the fridge or bellying up to the bar, I seem to have a go-to.

I mentioned the marketing—I thought long and hard about it, and I can’t remember seeing a print ad, but somehow I have a PBR trucker cap, wristbands, T-shirts—I even have a cowboy hat Mandrew made me. Pi saw one at Pride last year, and he surprised me for my birthday. Apparently, all it takes is a 30-pack, a 12-pack, a drunk friend and YouTube to become an elbow-bending milliner. I’ve gone so far as to ask a friend to crochet me a matching bikini with the cans sewn in—a veritable crochet cliché.

I was sort of blissfully unaware of my fondness for the red, white and brew until I went to a punk bar in another city and asked for a tall boy. The bartender distorted his face and, with a venomous hiss, informed me, “This isn’t a fucking hipster bar.” Am I a hipster? I felt like I had been shamed. I almost expected him to pull a dunce cap made of a party pack from behind the bar and make me sit in the corner to think about my bad decision-making.

Suddenly, I got all defensive about my poison and asked what kind of fucking poseur he was. I told him that, long before the hipsters claimed PBR, it was a staple of punk rockers everywhere, and said that instead of fucking buying his CBGB T-shirts at Nordstrom Rack, he might want to try sucking my tranny dick, and then I spit on his bar. My friends dragged me out before I got my ass kicked.

Why the loyalty? I absolutely can’t figure it out, but here is what I do know: practicality and thriftiness—two throwbacks from my Mormon upbringing. If I’m going to the store for a 12-er, it’s most likely the price tag, not the brand I’m reaching for, and when you see me at the club, I have that tall boy in my hand for a reason—again, it’s not the brand. I will get a tall boy because it is something to hold. Contrary to popular belief, I’m not a guzzler, so a tall boy will last me all night long. At most, I go through two. True, it’s warm and disgusting by the end of the night, but it’s more of a ruse. I spent many a year blacking out on the sauce, mostly for the fact I was having drinks bought for me, but, with a tall boy in hand, I can curb that with a polite “Thanks, you can get my next one.”

In conclusion, I guess that my choice comes from practicality instead of preference. To PBR, I say kudos to your marketing department. It worked, and if you need a fierce tranny, punk rock hipster for an ad, not only would I do it, I’d do it for free.

Speaking of go-to’s, let’s talk about my favorite holiday: Princess Kennedy Pride month. I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to celebrate Gay Pride Day and my birthday, both falling on June 8 this year in SLC. Start your day with us at SLUG, buy a T-shirt from the SLUG office and meet us at the beginning of the parade route on your bike. It’s my goal to be the largest bike gang the gays have ever seen. From there, we will ride our bikes though the route to the Green Pig Pub, where the PBR will be flowing for my annual Princess B-day/Gay Pride extravaganza. Whether you’re hipster or homo, punk or pansy, come and enjoy tall boys and tall boys with your favorite SLUGger.