Oh, No! Not the Pradas!
In the face of the racist, puritanical, self-serving, money-mad, avaricious U.S. citizens and politicians whose votes and campaigns against fairness and reason won out in the recent midterm elections, we need to keep laughing, working to retain what we have gained, and believing in miracles.
This fall, at Women’s Week in Provincetown, Massachusetts, I got my little miracle.
Of course, Tex is taking all the credit. First off, Tex was Best Butch at our wedding four years ago. She had a bad cold at the time and left before the wedding cake was served. We have been hearing about her tragic disappointment ever since. This year, the bakery was open thru Women’s Week. My sweetheart ordered a smaller version of our cake. In the swirl of lesbian events, socializing—and searching for my lost glasses—I was trying to connect with Tex to get her some cake.
The evening before, I discovered that my glasses were missing. I’ve been wearing glasses, full-time, for over 60 years and my particular visual issues require a very expensive prescription, so this was no small deal. I spent the morning recreating my perambulations of the last 20 hours. I was pretty sure I lost them coming out of a book signing with writer Rachel Spangler because we were chattering with the excitement of the event and the week and reconnecting.
I switched my clear glasses for sunglasses, carefully slipping the case into my brand new Human Rights Campaign (HRC) mini-messenger bag. I suspect that the glasses, in their case, slipped right on through and out the front flap of the unfamiliar bag. A little posse of us searched every inch of the area that night, but no glasses.
My sweetheart posted the loss on Facebook. That didn’t find the glasses, but it did prompt our optician, back in Tampa, to respond, in horror, “Not the Pradas!”
Well, yes, the Pradas. I am not in the habit of buying high-end frames, but I was having a heck of a time finding anything I liked until the other optician in that office, who clearly would understand the tastes of a lesbian butch, quietly left his seat and returned with a pair from the men’s section.
Love at first sight. Denim in color. Best. Frames. Ever.
And now, in Ptown, they were lost for eternity.
We had a lunch date with librarian pal M.J. and writers Karin Kallmaker and Pol Robinson. By this time a good percentage of the Women’s Week attendees, shopkeepers, hotel clerks, parking attendants, wait staff and police force were on the lookout for my glasses. Someone at our table suggested we check the Women’s Week info center in the old firehouse on Commercial Street to see if they’d been turned them in.
But first I had to find Tex and get some long-awaited cake to her. We agreed by phone to meet at the Farmers’ Market. My sweetheart, M.J. and Pol headed off to the HRC store and I set out to find Tex. On my way, I passed the firehouse and asked about my glasses. They didn’t have them. When I found Tex she dragged me back to the firehouse in search of a Women’s Week t-shirt.
Tex was trying on the shirts and choosing colors, and I was advising her, as were all four volunteers, including Massachusetts State Representative Sarah Peake and her wife Lynn Mogell, owners of Heritage House, as well as a woman from another Ptown inn, Ravenwood, and yet another helpful woman.
A woman leaned into the firehouse from the street, held an arm up to display something, and asked, “Has anyone lost this?”
I’m aware that my jaw has dropped. I stare at my glass case, unable to speak, as we have torn apart the town, our luggage, the rental, and the car looking for this. I also scheduled an emergency eye appointment the day we got home—a matter of a 5 hour round trip.
Tex keeps saying, “Lee-ee, are those your glasses?”
Everyone in the firehouse is, by this time, holding her breath. Astonished to the point of paralysis, I manage to yell, “Yes!”
Then the excited women are cheering and hooting and talking all at once and I go down on one knee to thank the woman and thank the goddess and introduce myself and the poor woman, Colleen, seems overwhelmed and flees.
The Ravenswood woman and I talk about the confluence of energies that led to this reunion with my glasses like it was a spiritual thing. If Colleen hadn’t picked the glasses up, if she hadn’t kept them safe, if Tex hadn’t wanted that t-shirt, if my sweetheart hadn’t ordered the cake…. The scene was total revival hall; the music from across the street was “Hallelujah.”
Then Lynn Mogell asked, Did you say you’re Lee Lynch? and fesses up to having been a long-time fan and is thrilled and that’s when everyone introduces themselves and a few minutes later I call my sweetheart to tell her to stop searching and she says, “I know!” because Colleen-the-Finder happened to stop at the HRC store next and knew Karin Kallmaker and announced that she’d just returned Lee Lynch’s lost glasses and the HRC store erupted in excitement and cheers and Karin had the presence of mind to get the woman’s card and wouldn’t you know it, Colleen’s job is very similar to the one I retired from and I will send her my book and there is rejoicing in the world.
Obviously, it all happened because Tex led me back to the firehouse.
The little miracle was getting my glasses back. The big miracle was all the gay people pulling together to make that happen.
Imagine if, next election, all the gay people pulled together to make more miracles, like giving kids safe homes and schools, spending our tax money on health care and good food for everyone. If it can happen for a pair of Pradas, it can happen for politics.
Copyright Lee Lynch 2014