Sunday, March 29, 2015


In late 1985, I was invited to the worst party of my life. I was invited because I was a poverty stricken poet, and the wealthy host thought it would be amusing if someone like me mingled with people that were filthy rich (and Republican).

His house was grand (14 rooms, not counting the 3 bathrooms). There was an abundance of food and alcohol, and I was the only conspicuously gay person there. After I heard a group of people laughing and joking about Rock Hudson and AIDS, I grabbed a Heineken, and decided to hide out for awhile in the first bathroom I could find. This was a mistake.

After I closed the door, I took a big gulp of the expensive beer, and began to take in my surroundings. The bathroom was huge. Double sink vanity, a jacuzzi, walk-in shower, and a little couch one could sit on. Hanging above the couch was an impressive oil painting. All this space and splendor certainly put my bare studio apartment to shame.

I actually had to search for the toilet (it was not in plain sight), and once I found it I could not believe my eyes: An entire wall was covered with purple, brown, and green food stamps. At first, I thought it was just some kind of very weird wallpaper. But I leaned closer, and was sickened to discover that the wall was indeed completely covered with real food stamps. What sort of fuckery is this? I had to get out of there.

I dropped the empty beer bottle in a waste basket, put on my hat and gloves (I was still wearing my coat), and left the godawful party in a hurry. As I was closing the back door, I could hear much laughter and classical music. I was chilled to the bone, but it had absolutely nothing to do with the wicked wind and falling snow outside.

Essay © 2015 by Dylan Mitchell

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