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It’s 12:01 a.m. according to my now celestial iPhone. I have been just 60 seconds in Heaven — the result of a Michigan Republican-sponsored pothole tripping mishap, courtesy of Gov. Snyder — but it seems like an eternity to me.
So, here begins my 10-minute sojourn into recollection, which, I say with all modesty, must be an LGBTQA first. I mean, who would believe that someone gay would be welcome here in big time showbiz (Even if St. Peter checks credentials.)
My stay at the Seventh Heaven Condo, corner of Oscar Wilde Boulevard and Alice B. Toklas Avenue, begins with a campy hug from concierge Truman Capote.
“Dear BTLer, Welcome to other voices, other rooms, so to speak,” he giggles celestially. “We met a half-century ago on Fire Island. You followed me for days. At long, long last we meet!”
Next I’m greeted by some radiant creature — Archangel Diva DeLuxe — who by beatific botox turns looks like the Red Queen from Alice in Wonderland, Christine Jorgenson, Lady T Tempest and Tallulah Bankhead. (But not necessarily in that angelic order.)
Archangel Diva has a radiant thousand stars in her tiara, and as she speaks, she scatters patchouli-scented daisy chains around me. I’m transformed ….
A she kisses me gently on my forehead, and says, “May the Eternal Mary be with you! Glitter and be gay! Enjoy your stay, however brief your afterlife taste of things to come! Oh, yes! Cloud 9 Drag Queen Bingo here is 24/7! They may want an ad in BTL.”
As I lace a daisy chain about my neck, I suddenly, exhilaratingly, feel transformed. I take a selfie of myself, pleased to discover I now look a svelt, youthful 25, am 75 pounds lighter, and underneath my ever-so-radiant, designer D&G choir gown with snow-white angel wings, I — too good to be true — have a born-again 32-inch waist.
I’m sure it’s a habit I haven’t outgrown yet, but even here in the afterlife I have to check my cellphone. Weather: Eternally sunny. Caressing winds. San Diego: 75 ’til noon. Palms Springs: 80 ’til 5 p.m. Ferndale: 70 for evening vespers.
Archangel Diva — who’s a splendid harpist and heavenly lip-sych artist — greets me with a medley of show tunes from “Gypsy,” “West Side Story,” “Sound of Music,” “La Traviata,” and “Hedwig and The Angry Inch.” She informs me that, because I am ‘family’, I also have been granted a choice.
Switching from uptempo Broadway renditions, to a rousing delivery of “Amazing Grace,” she smiles, “If you like, you can eventually stay here with your rainbow friends and family, or you can spend 10,000 years ‘bright shining as the sun’ praising the The Big Guy in the Trinity Broadcast Sky.
“Fair’s fair. It’s up to you. It’s your choice. Don’t say we didn’t warn you, Mary! (Confidentially, 10,000 years is a helluva long time, if you’ll pardon the expression.)”
Decisions. Decisions. First no book publishers, now this. My cellphone says it’s 12:05 a.m. It seems more like a century since I arrived. I must say, my condo room’s intriguing.
The walls are lined with pictures of myself over the years. (My God, the changes I’ve gone through.) And golden-framed pictures of me with friends I seem to have long forgotten. Oh my! If only … I’m sorry … I didn’t know … I drank too much ….
And, embarrassing to think about, some photos a little too X-rated, a little too candid. The lighting’s a little too dark for optimal designer decor; one or two photos I turn to the wall. (I’m actually blushing …)
Outside, the sun has turned into a giant disco ball. Its light dances my mood away. Dots of light turn into thousands of faces … some old … too many young … 12:06 a.m. Wow, I suddenly realize that it’s been six minutes without Trump ….