SoCS Nov 30/19 – No tea, no shade

I’ve been infected by popular culture!

I first heard the phrase  “No tea, no shade’ on RuPaul’s Drag Race, not all that long ago to be honest. I’m soooo late to the party with that series! To be even more honest, I haven’t watched them all. I was caught at a weak moment when I was feeling a bit under the weather, and got sucked in to the spectacle which is drag!

But then it got me thinking. Behind all the glitz and the in-fighting and the drama and the make up, RuPaul has done a huge amount to bring drag queens to the forefront of society’s consciousness and, I can only imagine, help this particular part of what used to be an underground culture, be more acceptable to people who may otherwise have been unwelcoming at best.

Did you know that the term ‘drag’ was first used in British theatre in the late nineteenth century, and was used t describe women’s clothing worn by men? Some say that ‘drag’ is an acronym for ‘dressed as a girl’ – which makes sense, but who knows. But then there is the phrase ‘putting on your drags’ which comes from Polari, the British theatre slang that was also popular with the then gay ‘subculture’ (as well as circus performers, wrestlers, merchant navy sailors, prostitutes and criminals. Sadly the language has all but died out, although the positive spin is that it has almost disappeared because gay men no longer have the need to speak in code – back in the 1960s when Polari reached its zenith, it was a crime to be a homosexual.

Anyway, no tea, no shade – or rather no arguments or insults from me!

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This is part of Stream of Consciousness Saturday, hosted by the lovely Linda – please visit her here to see what it’s all about.

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