the big diva
Volume 21/Issue 17/2003

Phyllis Denmark  


by Phyllis Denmark

Southern Decadence is finally here! I am so excited I could just pee. Since I have to submit my article in advance I donít actually have a thing to wear for Decadence. When this appears I am sure I will have many fabulous outfits sewn and ready to go for the big party. If youíre a first time visitor "Welcome," if you're back from last year "Welcome Back," hope you brought HAIR!

If you donít know who I am let me introduce myself. I am Phyllis Denmark commonly called "The Big Diva."

That title came with my writing for this paper. I am a big, old red-headed drag queen who is as common as red beans and rice! I want to welcome each and every one of you to New Orleans. I want everyone to have a safe and fun holiday.

First of all, check your attitudes at the airport girl. Youíre not in Hollywood anymore and nobody really cares who you are.

New Orleans is the friendliest place on earth. And since no one knows you here, we wonít tell anyone you had fun and were nice in New Orleans. We are all here to have a blast.

I do have a few tips for you. Donít pee in my yard and I wonít follow you back to Atlanta or Houston and pee in yours. It is against the law. I want to see yíall in the street not at Central Lockup. Remember to pace yourself while partying. You can drink more tomorrow, and the bars never close. I know you have heard scandalous things about New Orleans. Public sex is not allowed, GET A ROOM! or at least take it inside. PUBLIC Sex = 10 days in Jail! The police have a job to do and It will be a lot easier if youíre not in the street trying to put more than a lucky dog in your mouth. If you canít do it in the street at home, you canít do it in the street here! You paid for that nice hotel room, use it! If you do have an altercation, remember the police are right and you are drunk. You may win the argument, but you will probably spend the weekend in jail.

Other than these few rules, almost anything goes. You need to remember to eat. We have many fabulous restaurants in New Orleans, and there is always the for a quick bite.

Donít forget to rest. The party never ends here. If you get a nap, it will be there when you wake up. Now! Lets get the party started!

I have got a full schedule this weekend and I hope you do as much as you can and see as much as you can. I am going to let you know about a few fun things that are planned, and you can check out all the tea in the rest of Ambush for what to do and where and when.

Wednesday I am going to start my Southern Decadence by judging the 3rd Annual Miss Queens Fashions Pageant at Oz, 800 Bourbon Street, at 8pm followed by the Southern Decadence Kickoff Show featuring the Oz cast, with some very special guests. If you donít know about Queens Fashions, they are the Southern Decadence High Heel Headquarters. They have two locations, 907 Bourbon Street, and 3001 19th Street In Metairie.

And, if you donít know about Oz, they are only the premier dance club in the Gulf South. Check out their ad in Ambush to see what they have planned.

Thursday night we are going to bar hop and check out the Calendar Boy Contest at Oz. Do you have what it takes to be an Oz calendar boy? If so, sign up with Blanche Debris before the show. During the daytime, yíall need to check out some of the fabu things New Orleans has to offer. We have the wonderful Zoo, Aquarium, Imax Theater, D-Day Museum, and did I mention that the bars never close!

Friday we are going to party with the Southern Decadence Grand Marshal XXXI Rusty LaRoux. Check out her picture on the cover of Ambush. She is fabulous. She is a pretty red head like me. And she is old enough to be my sister. Yeah, but I could take her in the weight category. There will be an Extremely Happy Happy Hour at the Royal Cafe, 700 Royal Street, Friday from 4pm til... Entertainment will be provided with Charles Grant and Steven Marz, and their tribute to Josephine Baker, Josephine & Me. SDGM XXXI Rusty LaRoux will be on hand to meet and greet. Come by and buy Rusty and me a cocktail. It will give you a chance to see a real live Southern Decadence Grand Marshal!

You can follow Rusty to the Ninth Circle for the signing of the Grand Marshal's Decadence Poster. Ninth Circle is located at 700 N.Rampart St.

It is a great club with great music, and I just love their bartenders. At 10pm will be the Official Southern Decadence Drag Show at Lucilleís Golden Lantern, 1239 Royal Street. This is also where the parade will line up on Sunday at 2pm.

I am planing on checking out the show which will feature Rusty LaRoux, and many of the past Grand Marshals.

I hope to twirl from there to Club 735 where they will feature DJ Dave Myers from 5pm til 1am, and then DJ Robert Rodriguez, from 1am til 8am. Saturday night they will feature DJ Robert Rodriguez from 4pm til 12 midnight, followed by DJ Alyson Calagna celebrating with a birthday bash. Southern Decadence Sunday they will have Anthems T-Dance with DJ Dave Myers from 2pm til 8pm, followed by the one and only Susan Morabito from 9pm til 6am. What a wonderful way to party out the weekend!

Saturday night will also feature the Grand Marshalís Decadence Show at Body and Soul in the Marigny at 8pm, benefiting United Services for AIDS. All past Grand Marshals are invited to perform.

Sunday is going to be a fun packed day starting early, and going into the night. Remember what I said earlier "eat something!"

The Grand Marshals Makeup Breakfast will be held at Big Daddyís, 2513 Royal Street, and Chetís, 706 Franklin Avenue at 8am. Donít let the addresses fool you, they are next door to each other. There will also be the Annual Bear Decadence Breakfast and Make-up Party at the Phoenix, 941 Elysian Fields on Sunday morning at 10am. While Iím plugging, donít forget that the Phoenix is hosting the 21st Annual Leather Decadence 2003, the largest leather /levi block party in the south on Saturday! Check out their ad in Ambush for all the details. Lots of hot hairy bears and leather men hanging out there. Damn, Iím getting moist just thinkin about it.

The 31st Annual Southern Decadence Parade will start in front of Lucilleís Golden Lantern Sunday at 2pm. This is fun to watch and fun to participate in. It is basically a bar run thatís route is up to the Grand Marshal. We usually walk until we drop into a lounge and forget to leave. If youíre not passed out by 4pm, stop by Ambush Headquarters 828 Bourbon St. for the 11th Annual Southern Decadence Bead Toss. The Grand Marshal, Rusty LaRoux, and her entourage will be on the balcony throwing beads to the crowd below. I will be up there somewhere drinking and eating all the food! If you havenít had enough by this time, donít forget about Susan Morabito at 735 from 9pm til 6am.

Monday when we wake up, "if we wake up", the Country Club, 634 Louisa Street will be presenting their Recovery Party. You can lay around the pool with or without a suit, and drink Bloody Maryís or your favorite cocktail. They have a beautiful pool and deck, along with a well stocked bar. Clothing is optional!

At 1pm Monday we will close out the weekend with the 7th Annual Southern Decadence Closing Party - the Survivors Bar Run, led by your cruise director, Ted Mahaffy, at the Corner Pocket, 940 St. Louis Street, through the Quarter and the Marigny.

Just thinking about all this partying is making me tired and thirsty. Again, "Welcome to New Orleans." Remember to always "play safe." We want you coming back for many years to come. If you see me on the street say hi, and yes, I do bite! If you want to take me home with you, they have The Big Diva refrigerator magnets on sale at Hot Chocolate, 509 Dumaine Street. Hot Chocolate also has a wonderful selection of erotic and exotic candy, along with novelties and lots of LUBE!

P.S. If theyíre ugly when you wake up with them, they were probably ugly when you went to bed with them. Use good judgment and have fun!

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