George V. Reilly

Gay Bingo

Eric's hand over bingo cards

Emma, Eric, and I went to Gay Bingo this evening. It’s a monthly fundraiser for the Lifelong AIDS Alliance. This is not your grand­moth­er’s church bingo: the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are the ushers and the show is MC’d by a drag queen.

Every Gay Bingo has a theme. Tonight’s was the Love Boat, the campy 70’s TV show. Many in the audience dress for the occasion. I wore the nearest thing to a lounge suit that I had; Emma ac­ces­sorized a nautical top with a scarf. We brought Jill and Dick the last time we went. They have an enormous collection of costumes and they were some of their choice Fifties glad rags.

I’ve been there perhaps ten times over the last 15 years. For the first decade, it was held in the basement of a synagogue on Capitol Hill. It was always packed. Finally, they moved to a larger space, the South Lake Union Naval Reserve building, a few years ago. That’s always packed too.

It’s always a lot of fun. And for a good cause too.

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