July 7, 2006

The Wit and Wisdom of Quentin Crisp
Compiled and edited by Guy Kettelhack

Let Us Now Praise the Old Queens – A few years ago Jeff Osman, Robert Charles and I heard Quentin Crisp talk at the Barnes and Noble on Diversy. “Los Angeles is just like New York,” Mr. Crisp observed at one point, “only lying down.” This slender book is filled with similar such tasty bon mots; some even offer a hint of spice. “Indeed, we might say that the whole purpose of existence is to reconcile the glowing opinion we have of ourselves with the terrible things other people say about us.” “Politics is the art of making the inevitable appear to be a matter of wise human choice.” “Except for a sense of humor, Mr. Hemingway had everything.” Witty old queens are veteran patriots in our battle for equality, standing heel to heel (and those are quite some heels!) with other queer royalty: drag queens and leather queens. Every struggle for equality requires a vanguard to push and define boundaries. Now, 37 years since Stonewall, a new royal has been added to the court: wedding queens – committed couples of gays and lesbians who are getting married, making the inevitable appear to be a matter of wise human choice, indeed.


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