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My lips are not like sugar right now. Just this afternoon, my friend and date-to-be, Jessica, called and canceled on me with an amorphous cry of "issues" (which I hear as "tissues" and immediately assume diarrhea, poor thing), and now I'm left scrolling through my cell for somebody else over the age of 30 who might even recognize a correlation between the words "echo," "bunny" and "men."

After three failed attempts, I'm scratching my knees and resigning myself to the fact that, much like 20 years ago, I'm going to sit uncomfortably, think about suicide and listen to Echo & the Bunnymen alone, only this time at the House of Blues and not underneath my own bed.

"Yeah, I'll go," finally furs my fuzzy-headed friend Suzy by way of rescue.

"But you're only 25!"

"I said I'll go," she signs her fate, which is nine years less depressing than mine.

Oh, and what a fate it is. I suppose I could go into detail here about how some '80s-obsessed wanker dragged his disinterested friend down I-4 to the abyss of Disneyopolis, where both quickly took to crossing their arms and shaking their heads in the general direction of every unpleasantly bulging peasant top and leather pant on nearly every Orlando concertgoer who, in the continuing search for metaphoric justification in life, have "let themselves go" tastewise. Or I could mention how straight couples, in general overview after years of fermentation, are incredibly unappealing when assembled. Or I could call myself an asshole for thinking these things and having exactly no fun. But I've done all of that before.

Following a signature early exit, Suzy and I get to talking about how, quite possibly, I've done everything before, and how, quite possibly, I'm destined to be a miserable old fag forever.

"Do you ever think about the generation gap?" she grills, ominously.

"I am the generation gap," I fall through.

By the time I get home, I'm positively desperate for some sort of deflection, a mirror-lined path to shoot through like a violently bouncing strobe all the way. In short, I feel like I just got home, and I feel … (to fade). Quicker than a ray of light, I realize that I've still got one option left; my lips turn to sugar and my gap creaks open.

"Put your glad rags on," I speed-dial Eddie. "We're going to become lesbians."

Within three minutes I'm outside his house with my diesel engine revving like Amy Ray, and I'm closer to fine. Eddie appears in a sleeveless Atlanta Hawks T-shirt and jeans, looking the part, and me, still in all black, I feel like a Houlihan's waitress who just split her tips, walked her dog and ran out the door despite a yeast infection.

We make it to Southern Nights around midnight and turn ourselves into instant chum, swirling like bloody chops in a sea of bigger, edible fish. Well, not a sea, exactly. The few dozen in attendance may only constitute a puddle, but in our minds we're fantastically menstrual with lesbian potential.

The ubiquitous David Lee is here, and despite our Sapphic intentions, we immediately glom on to him.

"We're lesbians in training," he assures me, swigging back an Absolut and Diet Coke. "So, I was talking to this lesbian" (measured comedic pause) "and I said to her, ‘I had that hair last week!'"

General hilarity ensues, as does some discussion of how turning our assholes into vaginas is like the modern-day version of turning lemons into lemonade or water into wine or whatever. Some pith about Cyndi Lauper follows, which is safe because she has huge gay/lesbian crossover appeal, and we anxiously throw back complimentary cocktails and wonder why we ever even looked at boys. "Dyke is totally the new fag," David Lee offers. Over my shoulder something shakes.

It's actually a Styrofoam wig head with a drag queen attached to it, which is funny when you consider David Lee is Orlando's Hedwig. Otherwise, it's scary like an '80s horror film.

But tonight isn't about drag horror, it's about Baby Blue. Her new Lesbo-a-GoGo Wednesday night extravaganza, Les Femmes, just started this month, and because we are the same person (if you don't count a talent for sexy choreography), I had to pay it a visit.

From the stage, Blue introduces me as "the most smartest person I know … and the most crass," before hopping into a fantastic interpretation of one of the songs from The Triplets of Belleville. Backed by one Gina Gershon-alike ("Lolly") and one hot black girl ("Hey, Tamika, smile so I can see you" — Blue is from Georgia, after all), Blue sends the 50-or-so crowd into fits of throaty appreciation. Dollars fly, jeans sag and I and my other two triplets turn into lesbians. When Tamika goes drag king on a Lenny Kravitz song, Eddie (also black) claps, cooing, "Omigod! It's Lenny Kravitz! He's a black lesbian, too!" And the world slowly dissolves into heart-shaped pasties and hot wax titties poured from Jesus candles.

"What color are your eyes?" Blue again accosts me from the stage. "I wish I had a dildo so I could fuck you. We'd have some skinny-ass, blond-headed babies … at least they'd be smart!"

And gay.

"See you next Tuesday," Blue reverse-acronyms. "It means ‘cunt,' geddit?"

Actually, it's Wednesday. And you should by all means be there, you filthy, sugar-lipped lesbian.

billymanes@yahoo.com

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