Pearl of the Outback and fashion beyond the black stump

Bullamakanka Pearl of the Outback
Photo: QN Magazine

Pearl of the Outback, our regional correspondent, takes us back to Bullamakanka and a colourful local identity. Mr Humphries is the doyen of women’s fashion out in the never never, beyond the black stump.

Avid readers will recall the gent I previously christened Mr Humphries.

For the uninitiated, he is a VERY gay blade who fusses about one of the local retailers, flogging clothing to the local squires and their good ladies.

In a previous epistle, I related how Mr Humphries became local legend for a long-ago midnight run. On that occasion, he somehow became separated from his clothing late at night in a local park. He ‘borrowed’ a frumpy mumu from a nearby clothesline to protect his modesty and sprinted home.

Somehow, through the mists of time, that trifling incident became immortalised. It is now celebrated as a the first, and only, Bullamakanka Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.

I recently encountered Mr Humphries again in a newly opened and very metrosexual roof-top bar in Bullamakanka.

You are probably surprised that Bullamakanka should have a metrosexual let alone enough of them to support a bar!

Heavens, Merle, Bullamakanka is a magnet to surprisingly diverse range of visitors. According to ancient inscriptions on the gay memorial door in Central Park, both bogans and screaming queens have visited by the busload since the early 1900s.

A Bullamakanka Birthday

I ran into Mr Humphries on the occasion of his birthday. I dared not ask which one. She can be a sensitive old moll and an over-estimate might bring our friendship to a screeching halt. Too low a guesstimate would hint at a sexual agenda.

I did shout the birthday boy a birthday drink or three. He certainly enjoys a sherry. Once lubricated, he becomes a loquacious soul, eager to impart his wisdom to the world.

He has MANY opinions, most of them on fashion and matters ancillary.

He fell into his job, as I recall, because no other bloke would take it. The local job agency struggled for months to fill the position. However local yobbos would rather hang out for casual hours as rodeo clowns or calf de-knackerers, than be seen dead in Ladies Wear.

Nevertheless, in our neck of the woods, merely knowing the difference between organza and denim is sufficient to confer status as a fashion guru.

Indeed, Mr Humphries reads widely in order to offer the VERY LASTEST fashion advice to his clientele. When I ran into him, he waved about a copy of Who Weekly as he educated the barman on why Nicole Kidman should never wear green.

Feeling philosophical, I asked him, “Mr Humphries, what is fashion?”

“Fashion, my dear Pearl, is just a bunch of bitter queens telling women they’re fat and will never find love, a situation they can only remedy by spending shitloads of money on new clothes.”

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