02225: O Bar Is A Safe Space

Last night the drag performances at O Bar were mainly centered around celebrating the birthday of one of the drag queens, Kyle a.k.a. Precious Paula Nicole. When O Bar celebrates a drag queen's birthday with one of these birthday concerts, it means choreographing an entire performance set around a favored artist or musical genre that the drag queen in question loves. So the main set last night was a big Beyonce night that was pretty awesome.

Part of the performances included a tribute to the victims of the Pulse shooting in Orlando last month that included a slideshow of all the victims. There were also a few slideshows about Precious as well including photos with her family and friends and photos with various O Bar fans (Tobie and myself included haha). And lastly there was a video section all about how her boyfriend prepared a surprise for her birthday, which was really endearing to watch.

O Bar is another home for us and many others - a place where we can be ourselves and we can come together to celebrate the brilliance of Philippine drag. It isn't about insult comedy or overly mocking others. Instead it's more about elevating drag to the level of a performance art. And the as a whole it's quite glorious indeed.

And I'm glad that O Bar is a safe space for the community where all this can happen. Where else can we publicly acknowledge the deaths of LGBT friends from around the world and yet also celebrate the love between two men. And that may seem like such a little thing, but to the right people it means the world. And we've a good number of birthdays and even commitment proposals all held at the bar. And O Bar has been there for all of them.

I love that about the Bar, among other things. Sure, many people just see it as a business, a place to drink or a place to complain about since it isn't some other baar that they used to go to. But O Bar has become much more than that over the years and I am glad for the community offered by this simple venue dedicated to celebrating a lot of what makes the LGBT community so vibrant and colorful.