MY MOTHER: THE FRUIT FLY
My mother is awesome. Gay men love her. If there were a movie about my life, the breakdown would read, "Sherry is a cross between Bette Midler and Delta Burke." Her own words best explain why...
- •The first voicemail in which she addressed my homosexuality after I came out to her"Hi Sloan, it's Mommy. I was just speaking to Adnan [her gay friend] and I was wondering: are you a submissive top or a dominant bottom? Call me back!"
- •Her voicemail after the Supreme Court ruling in Lawrence v. Texas"Hi Sloan, it's Mommy. It's a big day for the gays!!! I didn't know sodomy was illegal if you did it behind closed doors! And that makes me nervous because of all the things *I've* done behind closed doors. Anyway, call me back!"
- •When she met my boyfriendWhen my mother first met my boyfriend, who was raised Catholic on a farm in Wisconsin (a far cry from her native Queens), she asked him every Jewish mother question in the book. She got to, "What does your father do?" Kyle replied, "He's a logger." My mother was dumbstruck. She thought she misheard him. She made him repeat it. Twice. When she was confident he really had said "logger," she took a moment to process the information. Then, she asked, "Like in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers?"
- •"Oh, if they only knew the things I did in that bedroom."After my grandparents had to be moved into a nursing home, my mother's childhood home was turned into a synagogue. I recently worked up the courage to visit it. I gave my mom an emotional report of all the changes, including the transformation of her bedroom into...the ark....where the Torah is kept. Her response? Above.
- •She has excellent taste and doesn't mince words.I'm a passionate theatergoer, a lifelong practice initially cultivated by my mother who, until this day, remains my favorite theatre buddy. She took me to see my first show, Tyne Daly's Tony Award winning revival of Gypsy, when I was only eight years old. She followed it up with gems like City of Angels and Kiss of the Spider Woman. I recently asked her why she didn't take me to the 80s mega-musicals used to break in all my friends--Cats, Les Miz, Phantom. Her response? "They're were bad."