I was 11 years old. It was a cool summer evening in Maine, where the Munat clan was vacationing. Word got to me that at a nearby cottage, a girls-only slumber party had erupted. Instinctively, my two male friends and I trotted to the site of it. We stood outside the home, gazing wistfully up at the windows and keenly listening to the sounds of girls talking and laughing inside as the fireflies hovered around us.
Eventually we could take it no more. We rushed to the door and knocked. The host girl's mother answered the door, and with great earnestness we begged to be admitted. In a response as predictable as it was devastating, she told us it was a party for girls only, then added, with a wink, "and you don't look like girls to me."
Crestfallen, we shuffled away from the house with our heads hung. But moments later, the same revolutionary thought seemed to pop into each of our little pre-pubescent heads. She had said we didn't look like girls. She had winked. Clearly, she was telling us that we could come in if we looked a little more like girls, yes?
In an instant the three of us had separated and were each sprinting to our respective homes. Upon reaching mine, I burst into the living room, where my mother was sitting quietly reading, and shrieked, "Mom, I need one of your nightgowns! NOW!!! QUICKLY!!!"
I would suppose there was then some explanation given, but I can't recall for sure. The next thing I remember I was back out in the night, beneath the moon in Maine, wearing my mother's nightgown, racing towards the gilded lair of the forbidden party. We three boys, all in women's sleepwear, arrived back at the house and cried out to the mother from the sidewalk. She appeared at the doorway, took a look at our outfits, and waved us in.
But at that moment, a wave of fear swept over me. I froze. I couldn't go through with it. Even as my internal voice barked at me to go, go, you idiot, I simply could not move. Whether it was a simple case of my shy nature getting the best of me, or some deeper spiritual fear of happiness, I can't say. But I stood there like a statue as my two friends entered the house without me.
Then the miracle occurred. Just as the devastation at my own lameness was setting in, the door to the house swung open again, and what might have been 10 or might have been 400 giggling girls came swarming out. With several of them grasping each limb of my body, I was lifted up and carried into the house.
In short...best party ever. There was popcorn and movies and music and scary stories, we stayed up all night talking about life's rich pageant, and watched the sun come up over the Atlantic as "Good Feeling" by the Violent Femmes played on this amazing radio station in Maine that only played music from the future.
Fast forward a couple of decades, and here I am, and here you are, with a similar opportunity to peek behind the gender curtain and spend a night with some pretty amazing ladies. In this case, no cross-dressing is required (though it would certainly be enjoyed). All you have to do is buy a ticket to LUPEC Seattle's big party on February 19th, starting at 8pm. For the official description and to buy tickets, visit Brown Paper Tickets.
For those of you who don't know, LUPEC is a Bolshevik organization seeking to overthrow the US government. Actually, it's an organization of Ladies United for the Preservation of Endangered Cocktails, a concept way more radical than Bolshevik revolutions. There are many chapters of LUPEC across the country, and on the 19th we will enjoy a coming together of the Portland and Seattle chapters (watch out social hierarchy, the cocktail swilling ladies are uniting!!!)
A portion of the proceeds for the event on the 19th will benefit the Jubilee Women's Center. JWC is a non-profit here in Seattle whose mission is to "provide women a safe and supportive place to live and an opportunity to learn while becoming self-reliant in housing and employment."
- The Jubilee Women's Center, a local non-profit supporting homeless women, 70% of whom are domestic violence survivors.
- LUPEC Seattle, a very cool group of women attempting to create a vibrant cocktail culture in Seattle and support local non-profits in the process.
- Rob Roy and Inner Chapters Books, two locally-owned, female-owned, socially conscious and excellent businesses.
- A humble, mild-mannered public servant who also happens to be a local author... moi (well, actually you need to buy a book to support me. I ain't getting no door cut. That's for the females).
And for an extra drink, bring along an article of clothing for children or women to be donated to JWC. Hell, bring a whole wardrobe with you. You still only get one free drink, but you know, you are allowed to commit acts of kindness without getting rewarded with booze. It's written somewhere in the constitution.
Hey I wrote a blog post! This was fun. I'll do it again soon.
Ta Ta For Now...
Painting above is "Summer Night On The Beach" by Edvard Munch