The Perils of Petunia Pap Smear

Another tale from the Big Gay Fun Bus

The road to Wendover is fraught with danger and excitement.

With the very last of the Big Gay Fun Buses announced, I’m feeling a little verklempt that this fabulous era is coming to an end. Damn, the economics of it all!

Many, many years ago, as I recall, it was most likely shortly before the Revolutionary War, Michael Aaron asked if I would like to help call bingo on the bus. What fun! What adventure! What an opportunity for me to get car sick! In the early years when I first began helping with the bus, as soon as we would arrive at the Montego Bay Casino, we queens would immediately rush to the upstairs restroom and change out of drag, believing that casino security would not want our real faces obscured for facial recognition purposes and that our lives just might be in danger from slightly drunken red-neck gamblers.

After a couple of years of this routine, my drag sister Cherri Bombb began driving the fun bus while in costume. She dared me not to change clothes when I arrived and to stay in costume the whole time. With much trepidation and anxiety, I did as she suggested and did not change clothing. So, there I was, standing in Montego Bay, in front of God and everybody, complete with wig and lighted blinking breasticles. I received many stares, with a couple of people shaking their heads in disbelief. As I began moving about the casino playing floor, I kept looking over my shoulder, expecting at any moment to be escorted out by security. I continued on the move, thinking that it would be more difficult for them to catch a moving target. Nevertheless, when you’re a plus-sized, gravitationally enhanced drag queen such as myself wearing a two-foot-tall pink beehive wig and eighteen-inch lighted breasticles, it’s as difficult to blend into the crowd as trying to conceal the Hindenburg in a sub-compact car parking lot.

I harbored much fear and apprehension as we promenaded around the casino, expecting at any moment to be accosted by some homophobic neanderthal. Much to my immense surprise, the most common comment that I heard from the public was from obviously red-neck-looking guys who would come up to me and ask if I had lost a bet. My response was, “This is what happens to you when you lose all your money at the blackjack table, and you have to (work the streets) to get home.” Their response was usually, “Holy Hell!” Other red-neck-looking guys would come up, wife-in-tow, to ask for a photo. For the wife, of course, not him.

After we had been cavorting around the casino floor for about an hour, often pausing to pose for photos with the gamblers, my fears came to fruition. I suddenly felt a very determined tap on my shoulder and heard a deep bass voice say, “Excuse me, ma’am.” I thought to myself, “This is it. I’m going to be detained. It’s my worst fear to be arrested while in costume.” How will I be able to cope sitting in a holding cell with a bunch of drunken gamblers? Are circumstances like this where prison rape fantasy stories originate?

I fervently hoped that whoever touched me might be attempting to heal their abysmally inadequate fashion sense by touching the hem of my dress. You know, sort of like Jesus!

I quickly spun around, to face my challenger. My right breasticle almost skewered him. I found myself standing with my breasticle pressing up against a security badge worn by a very large, intimidating, muscle-bound, (not to mention extremely handsome) security guard accompanied by a casino floor manager. Not wanting to be accused of resisting arrest, and thereby giving them reason to tackle me to the floor, I held my hands out, so they could put handcuffs on me. I was filled with dread, as chrome handcuffs would clash greatly with the rest of my outfit. Shockingly, they didn’t slap handcuffs on my wrists but instead, the floor manager reached out and shook my hand saying, “Thank you so much for being here. You add a lot of glamour and excitement to our festivities.” I was completely dumbfungled!

Well, I simply couldn’t believe this sudden turn of events. This changed everything. I’m not really a gambler so my main motivation in Wendover is to attend the buffet. I looked at my watch and realized that the buffet would not open for another hour. My stomach gave a tremendous growl. I set my alarm to notify me when it was time. So, in the meantime, like the Pied Piper, I led a small entourage across the street to the Nugget atrium and played Cards Against Humanity until the buffet opened.

Finally, my alarm went off and the time had arrived that the buffet should be delivered. Quickly, I headed directly for the buffet, which has always been the absolute highlight of my Wendover excursions. As it so happened, I believe I may have knocked over a couple of old ladies and run over a small child in my haste to get into the buffet before they ran out of food. Since this was my very first time going to the buffet in costume, upon sitting down in the buffet with a huge plate of food in front of me, it became readily apparent that my breasticles were greatly in the way. By necessity, I needed to “airplane” all my food around my breasticles just like a baby.

This story leaves us with several important questions:

1.    If I breathed in enough helium, could I become a blimp?
2.    If I put breasticles and a beehive on The Goodyear Blimp, could I use it as a body double?
3.    Might my blinking breasticles function as aircraft navigation lights?
4.    Am I the Jesus of the fashion world now?
5.    Should I engineer some eating utensils into my breasticles for the buffet?

These and other eternal questions will 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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