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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

ELS 7 - Backstage Dress-Up

Fat Bald Man kept on moving as he talked
“The practice ring is set up this way
We’ll get in there and I’ll walk you through the match
Don’t worry if you forget something during the real thing
I’ll lead you along when you need it
So try to have fun
The crowd will be able to tell and they’ll respond to it”

He stopped his rambling waddle gait at a door just short of the end of the hallway
Where I could see the practice ring in a much larger room

Hand on the worn brass knob
He continued
“This is wardrobe
We’ll both get suited up
There really isn’t time for us to rehearse so this will all be a dress run through”

I followed him through the old doorway
Into a medium sized room lit brightly by fluorescent lights
Made to feel smaller than it was by the travel wardrobes lining the walls
The brightly colored fabrics of hundreds of costumes creating a cacophonic wall of color

Grabbing one of those hooked reaching sticks that clothing retailers use for retrieving clothes from the second level racks in stores
Fat Bald Man reached out with it and hooked a hangar shrouded in black cloth
Pulling it out and offering it to me

“This will fit, don’t worry
That’s one of the reasons I picked you”
He said to me before turning back to the wardrobe and pulling out a second bundle of black cloth on a hangar with his stick

He pointed to a corner dressing area
“Don’t just stand there……..
I didn’t catch your name”

“Charles, it’s Charles”
I offered before hustling over to the dressing table

“Nice to meet you Chuck”
He offered as he stowed his stick and followed me
“My name’s Harvey
Been doing this shtick for almost ten years
You’re gonna have a great time!”

I hung up the hangar with the costume next to the mirror and started taking a look at it

It wasn’t made of cotton
Though it appeared so to casual inspection
It was more of a lycra blend of some kind
Stretchy and rather thin feeling
Which made sense for a fight costume

Taking the head piece and setting it on the table
And laying the outer black robe next to it revealed the black unitard on the hangar

“Put that on first”
Harvey told me
“Then put on a pair of elbow and knee pads
Before the outer robe”

He pointed at a bin full of used looking protective gear in the corner

I started taking off my pants when it finally dawned on me that Harvey was putting on the same outfit that I was
Just in a much shorter
Albeit wider size

“Are you……I mean, are we…..”
I started asking haltingly

Harvey laughed heartily
“Yeah kid
I’m The Nun”