Week 5 – Counterfactual Identity – “Today Was Such A… Drag”

This past Friday after theatre showcase, I decided to embark on a journey that would make me see the world through different eyes. I may be many things, but I never once thought I would ever be a drag queen, not even for the purposes of a project.

After theatre showcase, I prepare in the green room for a day I’m not necessarily accustomed to. My friend Karen Ruiz displayed her artistic talents as she had executed my “dramatic” Drag appearance, which took her an hour and a half to complete. After the makeup preparation, I put on my boots, which were the only boots remotely close to heels that I owned. Karen and I headed out to the quad centers on campus, where we encountered many busy students who didn’t have time to speak. We eventually encountered a few of our peers.

On video, we were able to capture a few of our encounters with some of the student body. First, we encountered a student and artist named, Lauren who guessed that my name was George and I was associated with the Theatre Arts department. Traveling down the long paths of CSULB, we had come across another student, Liam. Liam thought that I would have been a “woman” in the Art department. We also had the chance to meet a worker on campus, April Rose de la Cruz, who actually studied at CSU Dominguez Hills. She thought my drag name would be Purple Star.

Off camera, we had encountered several other people as well. On the second floor of the USU, we met two young men, Woo and Jeff, who had given insightful answers to the questions presented to them. Woo, thought that I was a Music major who was into music, diversity and partying. Jeff thought I was a Communications major who liked to experience new kinds of food. From here, Karen and I traveled to them gym, and on our way, we ran into a student named Antony, who thought I was Business major named James and that I worked at McDonald’s for a living. He said the eyelashes freaked him out from afar.

After that interesting conversation, Karen and I continue to the gym. A mother and daughter walk beside us and they turn around to tell me that I looked fabulous. The comment made me giggle. When we finally reach the gym and the bundle of fixed eyes onto my appearance, we run into a girl named Hannah, who told me that she thought my name was David. My look gave her the impression that I was loud and confident. She thought I was in COTA somehow and that I was a drag queen for life (#dragqueen4life). Another student, Errold had the same idea as far as the major is concerned, but he thought my name was Ashley. Lastly, Karen and I run into a guy named Julius at the pool. He told me that I looked like a Brandon, who was outgoing, flamboyant, outgoing, social and worked in a retail store. He also told me that I really pull off the look of a drag queen.

I never thought that I would dress up remotely similar to a drag queen. However, in doing so, I realized that we all have potential to do things beyond measure, whether or not we are comfortable with them initially. These people did not know what the project was for, yet they all had some preconceived notion of me, not knowing my real name, major, or personality. People are perceptive of us, and we can be too.

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