There's nothing like seeing a grown man cry.
Not that there was anything to cry about at The Roosevelt where the evening began.
We arrived early and had our pick of seats in the light-filled dining room. All we really needed were the two end stools.
I always enjoy being in The Roosevelt early on before the hordes descend. The vibe is so completely different.
'Tis the season, so we got a bottle of Boxwood Rose to ease us into the weekend.
Like we needed easing.
The good news was that the menu had just been tweaked today, making for some new choices for us regulars.
Crostini thick with local ricotta, anchovies and radish slices satisfied us to start.
A new salad of peaches, burrata, hazelnuts and arugula with banyuls vinaigrette delivered the taste of summer fruit and the ultra creaminess that mozzarella only wishes it had.
Hand-cut steak tartare got a richness boost from an egg yolk and charcoal vinaigrette, making for a plate sopped clean with bread so as not to miss a trace of charcoal, beef or egg.
Between discussing Members Only, the local '80s cover band that's got everyone dancing lately and hearing about how to handle a lubricated customer from bartender T, we hadn't noticed how much time had flown.
I should have realized because the dining room was suddenly full.
Coca cola cake and King Family Loreley were requested in short order, giving us the sweet period at the end of the meal sentence.
Properly fortified and dressed appropriately, it was time for the GayRVA third birthday party at Gallery 5.
The party was still very much in the mingling stage when we arrived and the host was giving everyone a bear hug as welcome.
3-D glasses were handed out at the door, tying in to the theme "Attack of the 30-Foot Drag Queens."
It didn't take long to find friends or drinks as DJ Soigne West kept the bass thumping.
And such friends. The handsome theater critic complimented my brief dress, Princess Di ruffled my hair, telling me how much he liked my "sex" hair and a guy I met a year ago told me he reads my blog regularly and loves it.
A girl can't get too much of that kind of attention.
The buffet was courtesy of Crossroads VCU and had a '50 theme: spanikopita, cream cheese-stuffed celery, cheese and Country Club crackers.
But as a friend noted, it also had a particularly phallic theme: pigs in a blanket, meatballs, Vienna sausages.
Yes, Vienna sausages. We'll leave it at that.
Cupcakes came from Delish and the dark chocolate frosted chocolate one I tried was spicy with the heat of cayenne.
It wasn't long before the show started and it was being hosted by Natasha Carrington, self-described as "a fat guy in a dress."
Actually, she had on a bodysuit, a sparkly shrug and impossibly high heels.
Before long, press-on nails were flying off the stage and she was shimmying all over the place.
Women began approaching the stage with dollar bills for her efforts and I noticed more than one woman with a wad of bills tucked into her bra or shirt pocket.
I wish I'd known.
Talking afterwards, Natasha began having microphone issues and insisted to no one in particular that it be fixed.
Once that problem had been solved, she joked, "How many gay men does it take to fix a microphone?''
She paused less than one beat. "None!" she cackled. "Get a lesbian!"
Later when she commented on how warm the room was (the radiators actually felt warm for some reason), she called out, "Any lesbians out there with heating and air conditioning skills?"
Natasha wasn't the only performer; we also saw Scarlet Starlet in red fishnets and eventually her pasties before Deanna Danger took the stage and did the same but with a hula hoop.
But Natasha was our hostess and she never stopped engaging and provoking the audience.
"Will you look at this tuck job?" she asked, looking very feminine down there. So we did look.
When it was time for the big moment, the announcement of GayRVA's Richmonder of the Year, Natasha stood by as publisher Kevin praised the winner as someone who'd been tireless in his work fundraising for HIV awareness and the Fan Free Clinic.
And then boom, the announcement that it was Natasha, aka John, and the tears began to fall.
Accepting a bouquet and goody bag, Natasha wiped her mascaraed eyes and shouted, "F**k you bitches for making me cry!"
It was actually a very touching moment.
Eventually we moved on from burlesque to boylesque with Jebidiah Stone taking the stage dancing in a cardboard robot costume that was eventually shed for shiny blue shorts, then black briefs and eventually a G-string.
And he never stopped dancing, flipping and flexing.
"Ladies and gentlemen," Natasha roared afterwards, "That's how a man should take off his clothes!"
Okay, maybe not every time, but on occasion, it would definitely have its appeal.
Scarlet performed again and so did Deanna, although this time it was her aerial stylings.
Out of nowhere there was a large metal ring hung from the ceiling and she mounted it, weaving her body in, on and under it in any number of suspended provocative poses.
And speaking of provocative, on a trip to the bathroom, I excused myself by a large group and one woman looked me up and down and said, "Mmm, mmm, mmm!"
I think I knew what she meant, but I'm not sure we're compatible.
I can't fix a microphone.