The Perils of Petunia Pap Smear

A tale of hide and seek

The road home from Third Friday Bingo is fraught with danger and excitement.

Please let me preface this column with a huge thank you to the Congregation of the First Baptist Church, who allow us rent space every month in order to conduct our silly bingo frivolity to earn money for charity.  This is one of the churches that genuinely likes the LGBT community, and not only when the TV cameras are around, but each month they let a bunch of clownish drag queens take over the place.  And I always get a big welcoming hug from Pastor Curtis, who I might add is rather hunky.  Just sayin’.  Of course with my breasticles usually in the way, any hug I experience must be a sort of a sideways hip bump and grind sort of thing.

The Pap Smear grandchildren like to call First Baptist the “Hogwarts Church,” because the building reminds them of the castle in the Harry Potter books.  That being said, the church building is a vast and expansive structure with many stairwells, hallways, and rooms too numerous to count, and frankly after dark, when all the lights are off can be rather frightening.

In November, The Matrons of Mayhem had such a rousing good time at our regular bingo night, that when it was over, we decided to stay in makeup and go to Club Try-Angles for an after-bingo cocktail to celebrate.  It usually takes us about 45 minutes to clean up our mess and haul all the makeup out to our cars.  Of course, me being the size queen that I am, it takes me several more trips out to Queertanic than the other “girlz.”  Thus, I end up being the last queen out, and responsible to lock up the building.

I had just turned off all of the lights upstairs in Keck Hall and as I was descending the stairs I heard the door open and close, and I heard some footsteps retreating down one of the ground floor hallways.  Oh, shit!  Someone had sneaked into the building.  Luckily, I had my red sequined purse with me, and it was loaded with a can of Diet Mountain Dew, which I could swing as a weapon if needed.  Luckily, my grandchildren’s favorite game is to play Hide and Seek, so I am well practiced in the art of discovery.  Although, usually with the kids, they tend to hide with body parts visibly sticking out from behind the furniture, so perhaps my detective skills are not quite up to the level I imagine.

As I came to the first floor landing, began calling out in my loudest and butchest voice possible, “Hello, who’s there?”  as I began the room to room search.  First, I went into the girls bathroom and was immediately flabbergasted to discover how much nicer it is than the boys restroom.  Then with my nerves growing ever more twitchy, I explored the boys restroom.  Again I was relieved that no one was there.  And I thought that I might as well take that opportunity to pee in a controlled situation, rather than have an unwanted release during a moment of fright or flight.  Just let me explain, that it is incredibly difficult to relieve oneself while wearing crinoline petty coats and huge breasticles. Visibility of the necessary parts and target are totally nonexistent and you have to go by instinct and faith.

Now, with an empty bladder I continued the search down the long and dark hallway toward the vast sanctuary.  I was glad to have the lighted breasticles leading the way, because I did not know the location of any of the light switches. I was so grateful that I had worn flat shoes, just in case I needed to flee for my life, or dive tackle the trespasser if he turned out to be cute.  (Sensible shoes ladies, a mantra to live by!)

My apprehension increased as I shined the breasticle light into room after room.  I considered calling the police, but I really didn’t want to be dealing with the police while wearing shining breasticles and beehive hair.  I worked my way into the main Sanctuary, with all its shadowy pillars and pews.  Scared as hell, and beyond the point of caring if perhaps this is the very first incident of a drag queen entering this sacred room, I began the row by row search.  Again, very thankful for the breasticle light.  I thought I heard some movement out in the front foyer, at the back of the Sanctuary. There I found a long and dark stairway leading down into the pitch black basement.  At the bottom of which, in the children’s cry room, I cornered the trespassers.  Two teenage boys, who when they saw my breasticles a blaring and seven foot tall beehive hair,  looked even more frightened than I felt.  They explained that they just sneaked into the building to play basketball in the gym.  As I escorted them out of the building, I fired a continuous litany of threats and intimidation so that as they exited the door, they ran away as fast as they could.

As always, these events leave us with several burning eternal questions:

  1. In a situation like this, is it okay to swear in a church?
  2. Should I begin to use the women’s restrooms in buildings for the nicer amenities?
  3. Should I attach mirrors to my breasticles to help facilitate restroom relief?
  4. Should I develop a line of defensive weapon purses?
  5. Should I open the Petunia Pap Smear Detective Agency?
  6. Could my advertisements state: I can find your kids and scare them straight?
  7. Or should I begin writing a book series called: Petunia Pap Smear, Private Dick?

These and other important questions to be answered in future chapters of: The Perils of Petunia Pap Smear.

Petunia Pap Smear

Petunia Pap Smear was born a boy in a Mormon family in a small Idaho town in the year of the cock. No, really, look it up. As is LDS tradition, at a month old her father blessed the little Petunia in the ward house on the first Sunday in June. The very next day, they tore the church house down. Probably for good reason. Little did parents Jack and Orthea know that their little boy would grow up to be a full-fledged, rainbow flag-waving, high heel-wearing, sheep-tending “Ida-Homo.” The Perils of Petunia Pap Smear follows her life from the sheep-tending Boy Scout of her youth to the full-figured and brash queen she is today. Her adventures in the many Queer-Tanic trips, the Salt Lake Men's Choir, the Matrons of Mayhem, and Utah Prides and Lagoon Days have been canonized the past 15 years in a monthly column in QSaltLake Magazine, Utah's publication for the LGBTQ+ community. These tales and her words of wisdom were corralled into a 355-page book that will become the Quint to the Mormon Quad. See it at

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