observations on a gay rooftop happy hour

I've been feeling quite stagnant...bored, lonely and tired. My horizons seem to be shrinking instead of broadening...in short, the saying, "same shit different day" is beginning to fit my life rather well. 

I've  moped about it for a while....but that is boring too....

In order me to grow out of this particular tangled mess of sameness, i think i need to step outside of my comfort zone. Now, i love meeting new people and doing new things. But there is a moment before the meeting and doing that is terrifying to me. I usually get a friend to try something new with me...but this time i'm taking action and i'm taking it alone.

I signed up to attend a volunteer orientation at  The Center, the local GLBT center. What an great place! Walking into The Center is like walking into a corner of heaven. Its so refreshing to be in  a non-judgmental space...an open, caring space. I walked into a room full of other GLBT peeps looking to be a part of their community. I was inspired by The Centers long standing presence in the community and the plethora of programs they offered. I had a conversation with the Volunteer Coordinator, discussing the many volunteer opportunities I was interested in. She was impressed with my work history and my current foray in the non-prof world and long story short i found myself agreeing to be one of five volunteer captains working at Denvers PrideFest. (the third largest in the nation) I've been to all of the PrideFest Production meetings and after everyone i ask myself "what the hell have you gotten yourself in to??" I always end up in some sort of leadership/management/coordinator position but this is a little outside of my realm. I'm a small team manager, an office supervisor, a disaster response planner...not a LARGE EVENT volunteer captain! I am nervous as hell but wildly excited. 

so, PrideFest is in three weeks (YIKES) but i wanted to get my feet wet in the whole volunteer world so decided to try my hand at a Rooftop Happy Hour. The Center hosts a couple of Rooftop Happy Hours during the summer...its gets the community together and raises funds for The Centers programs.

Friday May 18, 2012

I raced over from work, changing at stop lights. I arrived rather breathless and was thrown into a group of bar tenders from previous Center Happy Hours. Slowly but surely in came the gays; old and handsome, young and beautiful, loud and crazy, quiet and shy. There were men and women everywhere, every single one of the gay, lesbian, bi, transgender, queer or ally. You name it they were there....buying drinks and getting tipsy. At first i was simply barback. I ran trash, filled ice buckets and restocked the beer coolers. A storm was threatening to rain down on our little party...instead it rumbled and roared but only sprinkled. There was an air of excitement as people drank and laughed and watched the sky for lightening. Finally it was busy enough for me to start tending bar myself...i poured pre-made drinks and popped the tops off of so many beers i was seeing bottle caps in my dreams later. There were scads hot, sexy, beautiful women everywhere! I winked and flirted and smiled....caught a couple lingering glances...i was having a BLAST! I saw a few co workers. Met their partners and talked shop. The night wore on and alcohol began wearing away at peoples inhibitions. There was a group of "almost fifties" women that I became quite chummy with as i served them beer and sweet vodka drinks.

her lipstick was dark and thick, her hair twenty different shades of brown and sticking straight out all over her head. She was starting to slur just a mite.

"you are too cute...how old are you? nineteen?"

"Haha! Im serving alcohol so i have to be older than that..."

"Oh right!! hahaha arnt you smart! You must be so smart! Its your glasses. Are you smart?"

"Oh sure, i'm practically a rocket scientist."

"Oh! haha your funny too! Am i going to see you on youtube??"

"Sure, i'm all over youtube!"

Her eyes widened, "Really?!"

"No," i chuckled, "i have never put myself on youtube."

"HAHAHAHAHAH" she cackled merrily. "You are too much!"

I had already grabbed her a beer at this point and was in the process of handing off a few more when she decidesd to run her fingers through my hair....no joke.

"Oh your hair is just great! What kind of product do you use? Where do you get your hair done? oh i love short hair....you should go to Sallys Beauty Shop!" 

"Well, i guess i'll have to check it out..."

and she swooped away as quick as she came.

a few minutes later two more ladies came up to the bar....we were out of the beer they wanted so i coaxed them into something else....They propped themselves up at the bar and one asked, "See any pretty single women here?"

"well, i've seen plenty of pretty women but i have no idea if they are single...."

"yeah, so , are you single....??" she wiggled her eyebrows up and down.

"and then some" i said dryly

her friend asked, "well, what if i were younger would you go out with me?"

her eyes begged me to say yes even if i didn't mean it. 

"Of course!" they roared with laughter delighted with the idea.

the first one asked, "how bout now...would you date a 50 year old me now."

"well, i try not to discriminate..."

"oh!!!! ha-haha you are funny" and she ran her fingers through my hair. 

Apparently when one is drunk you don't have to ask permission to touch someone else's hair. I've never had so many women touch my head.

One gentle giant, with a silver flat top, came over for another beer. Her arms bulged out of her polo and she strutted around with confidence. I popped open a killians and handed it over. Her eyes were twinkling and her pal nudged her to say something. I leaned over expecting her to take liberty with my hair just like everyone else. Instead she said, in a deep scratchy voice,

"I don't want to sound like a jack ass but uh, you have a nice keister...."

First of all, first time ever to get a compliment on my ass....i was really rather flattered.

Second, KEISTER? haha i almost died laughing. I blushed and thanked her profusely, she walked away blushing just a tinge herself. I hate that i can't remember her name...maybe i'll see her again somewhere.

Last call came all too soon and those of us serving drinks switched in to clean up mode. We packed up cups and napkins, took down tents and chairs, wiped down tables. We watched as people filed downstairs and back out into the cool Denver night. Groups were heading to after parties and clubs, out to grab food or more drinks. I could see one of the "almost fifties" walking down Colfax with her group of buddies teetering on her heels and singing. My feet hurt and my eyes were heavy but my mind was racing. There is just something about being in the company of people just like you, having fun and being free. I had a blast and can't wait for the next happy hour.


bookish butch said...

Sounds like a hoot:-) You can handle Pride, I know you can

MakingSpace said...

You're gonna rock PrideFest.

Since I'm in the Almost Fifties category, I'm making a note to self to go to that thing if ever in Denver. Never mind that I don't drink. I wanna hear someone say keister. Hahaha

Anonymous said...

I'm in the Almost Fifties category too- and apparently missing out big time!!

You'll be awesome with PrideFest- You've got great hair and a nice keister- how can you lose?? :D

Very cool that instead of wallowing in sameness and stagnant-icity (?) that you are stepping out of your comfort zone and doing something about it! A great lesson for all of us :)
Awesomeness trumps boredom and loneliness! you got it! :)

Harper said...

thanks for the support friends...i intend on rocking pride with a vengence! and yes, this is the spot for ladies...you all should probably visit at some point...its kind of freaking amazing