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Excerpt from How to Be a Real Gay by Graeme Reid

How to be a Real GayThe Mail & Guardian have published an excerpt from How to Be a Real Gay by Graeme Reid.

Reid recounts the various mishaps and near-mishaps that took place behind the scenes at the Miss Gay Ten Years of Democracy pageant held in Ermelo in 2004. The book examines gay identities in small town South Africa and takes its title from a series of workshops organised by gay activists in Ermelo.

When Thulani announced that he was dropping out as an organiser of the pageant, just hours before the doors of the Wesselton Hall were due to open, he left Bhuti to take care of all the arrangements. And most of them still needed taking care of.

For one thing, the hall was locked and, we were told, the caretaker who held the keys was in a shebeen adjacent to the taxi rank in town. Furthermore, the event had been advertised for a different venue. Although the fine print on the receipt read “Wesselton Hall”, Bhuti was under the impression that he had booked the Gert Sibande Hall. “Gert Sibande” was printed on all the posters and everyone would need to be redirected.

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