At The Mic

Mike Delamont

Mike Delamont as God in his one-man show God is a Scottish Drag Queen

Mike Delamont as God in his one-man show God is a Scottish Drag Queen

If you told me back in high school the majority of my income would come from wearing a dress, speaking in an accent and telling jokes about the Lord, I don’t think I would have believed you. Where was that kiosk at the job fair?

I saw entry-level positions at McDonald’s, a few options for hotel management, but I never saw a desk advertising the pros of being God, as a Scottish Drag Queen. To be honest, when I tell people I’m a comedian, they look at me as if I said my puppy died. A sad: “maybe if you had tried harder” look that always makes me feel like I have a big stain on my shirt.

My girlfriend’s parents saw my one-man show for the first time the other day. I met them a little over 18 months ago and liked them from Day 1. A lovely, traditional small-town family that has never been anything but sweet to me. While they have always known I am a comedian, they had never been to one of my shows.

I don’t know how the conversation went when she told them: “This is my boyfriend … he wears a dress for a living.”

I think even the most open-minded of fathers might have been a little nervous.

When I played Orlando, Fla. I was surprised by the number of people who were shocked that I’m not gay. “BUT YOU’RE A DRAG QUEEN!?” to which I begin the long reply of how I’m not actually a drag queen, it’s just the character.

People sometimes get upset that I’m not actually a drag queen, though they never get upset when they find out I’m not Scottish … or the Lord. Plus, drag queens work hard to look like that. They twist and tuck things into places you never thought possible.

I was asked in Montreal if I would join something called the “Drag Races.” I assumed it was cars. Turns out, it was just a bunch of vicious queens fighting for supremacy. I competed. I had to put makeup on a man, ride a tricycle, mix a drink and sing karaoke. I lost. A skinny queen dressed like Cher won.

The consolation prize is that I took off my wig and put on pants while she had to pull duct tape off her entire body.

Anyway, I don’t know if my girlfriend’s parents were nervous to see me perform, and if they were, they certainly didn’t show it. I can’t imagine what it’s like to be a parent with a beautiful daughter and have her bring home some shmuck comedian.

I can tell you what it’s like to stand on a stage in front of them in what feels like the hottest theatre on the planet and try to make them laugh. It’s stressful!

I’ve performed in Las Vegas, New York, and even for the talent scouts at Just For Laughs and nothing compares to watching the two people you want to be your in-laws, sitting in the fifth row off the centre aisle and hoping they laugh. You start rocky. You start slow. You make mistakes. Then you focus. You forget the stress, you forget all the crappy couches you’ve had to sleep on while on the road, you forget the time an old lady threw a cigarette at your stage manager and burned his shoe, you forget about that time in Toronto when the skies opened and flooded the city in the middle of your show, you forget about the time you split your pants on stage and everybody saw everything.

You just tell the jokes. You make the folks laugh. And once you have entirely forgotten all the stress in your life, you look at the fifth row off the centre aisle and you see the three people you care the most about laughing to tears, and nothing else matters.

There wasn’t a kiosk for what I make a living doing today, but by God there should have been.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
Vancouver Island children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Nanaimo-raised singer Allison Crowe with director Zack Snyder on the set of ‘Man of Steel’ in 2011. Crowe performs a cover of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah in the upcoming director’s cut of ‘Justice League.’ (Photo courtesy Clay Enos)
B.C. musician records song for upcoming ‘Justice League’ film

Allison Crowe’s close connection to director led to rendition of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah

The Gordon Head Recreation Centre stands in as the Quimper Regional Hospital on Feb. 23 for filming Maid, a 10-part Netflix series. (Greg Sutton/District of Saanich)
Netflix transforms Saanich recreation centre into hospital for filming

Facility was closed to public Feb. 23 for filming of Maid

This image released by SYFY shows Meredith Garretson, left, and Alan Tudyk in the new series "Resident Alien." (James Dittinger/SYFY via AP)
B.C.-shot ‘Resident Alien’ invader gets lift-off with viewers

New Syfy series catching on, proving TV doesn’t have to come from premium cable

WILDLIFE TREE: Tofino Poet Laureate Christine Lowther stands next to a giant cedar tree on District Lot 114, the site of Tofino’s controversial affordable housing project. The tree was pinned with an official Ministry of Forests yellow wildlife tree sign to educate fallers that the tree needs to be left standing for food, shelter and nesting. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Tofino author Christine Lowther calling for poetry about trees

“I’m thrilled to be of service to trees through poetry.”

West Coast-themed metal art by Nanaimo artists Hayley Willoughby (pictured), her father Jack and partner Blair LeFebvre is on display in the window of Lululemon at Woodgrove Centre from now until March 13 as part of the store’s monthly local artist program. (Josef Jacobson/The News Bulletin)
Metal artists present cross-generational show at Nanaimo’s Woodgrove Centre

Work by Hayley Willoughby, her partner and father on display in Lululemon window

Vancouver Island Symphony principal violinist and concertmaster Calvin Dyck is among the musicians performing in the upcoming Salmon and Trout concert. (Photo courtesy HA Photography)
Vancouver Island Symphony will make a splash with fish-themed quintets concert

Performance was to take place in November but was rescheduled due to COVID-19

Nico Rhodes, Lucas Smart, James McRae and Kosma Busheikin (from left) recorded their set for the Nanaimo International Jazz Festival’s online video series at the Harbour City Theatre in December. (Photo courtesy François Savard)
Music starts next week at online Nanaimo International Jazz Festival

Ten free, virtual performances to occur over three weeks in March

The original artwork created by local artist Emily Thiessen, is featured as the Commercial Alley’s eighth installation. (City of Victoria)
 The original artwork created by local artist Emily Thiessen, is featured as the Commercial Alley’s eighth installation. (City of Victoria)
Victoria calls for artists to fill Commercial Alley gallery

Competition open to artists in the Capital Regional District

Cowichan Valley author Teresa Schapansky’s books for young readers have become a phenomenon on Amazon. (Submitted)
Cowichan author tops Amazon charts

Award-winning author Teresa Schapansky learned of a need for low-level readers in the classroom

Nadia Rieger restocks some of the art supplies at the Crows Nest Artist Collective. Their move to stocking more art supplies over the course of the pandemic was a response to increased demand, which she thinks shows people have been turning to creating art to cope with mental health struggles due to lockdowns and restrictions on other activities. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror
Vancouver Islanders using art to conquer COVID blues

It seems people have been turning to their creative sides to stay mentally and emotionally healthy

Chris Bullock, Parksville artist, stands next to his ‘Mermother’ series, on display at the McMillan Arts Centre until Feb. 29. Bullock himself will be at the MAC from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. every Saturday until the end of the month. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Parksville artist Chris Bullock’s unique illustrations on display

‘I’m heavily influenced by old comic book styles from the 1950s’

Most Read