A Dress The Color Of An Ally

, , , , , | Hopeless | July 19, 2018

(Most of you will be too young to remember the days when someone could go to jail if they had a birth certificate that said, “Male,” and they were caught wearing female clothing. Consequently, Hallowe’en is a HUGE party day for the gay community, which, of course, is very underground at this time. But many people want a special dress for the ball that is held annually, and if you can’t afford a dressmaker, what are you to do? I have some gay friends, so I am familiar with the lifestyle and trials of the times. I also work in the young women’s department. This happens on the weekend before Hallowe’en.)

Me: “Hello, sir, can I help you with something?”

Male Customer: “My sister is going to a semi-formal event, and I wanted to buy her dress for her as a surprise. She’s the same size as I am, pretty much.”

Me: “Let me show you what we have in stock.”

(After showing several dresses, which he looks at in great detail, trying to glimpse himself in the mirror with the dress held in front of him…)

Male Customer: “I think this one is nice. Maybe I’ll take it. What do you think?”

Me: “I’d vote against it, sir. The colour doesn’t suit your complexion at all.”

(The customer kind of ducks his head and blushes when he realises that I know what the story is.)

Me: “What I’d suggest for your sister is either this one or one of these two.”

(He decided to take one of the dresses I’d recommended and came back later to tell me he’d had a great time and loved the dress. I was so pleased to be able to make even just one night easier for someone who basically had to live a life of serious pretense in order to stay out of jail or not be beaten up. It isn’t perfect yet, but we have come along way.)

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