Everything old is new again. Last week we saw the opening of the newly renovated and named upstairs section of the Midnight Shift.
Unlike some so-called renovations, the new Saddlebar has genuinely gone through changes — fabulous new floorboards, pool tables at every turn and even pinball machines.
Excited by the prospect of peanuts and throwing the shells on the ground, Barracks-style, I slipped into my butchest jeans and singlet and checked out the opening night.
I was met with a room full of men, some decked out in regular jeans and T but others had full leather gear on — chaps, vests, armbands, uniforms and harnesses. They moved like proud pigeons, puffing their chests out when they met someone.
The comparisons between a leather boy and drag scream at me. Is it just all costuming? Both styles can fall under the heading ‘Fetish’. Anyone who says drag isn’t needs to wear a corset for a couple of hours and get back to me.
Could it all be lumped into ‘Drag’, whether you’re in boy drag or girl drag?
A sexy leather-clad man came over for a chat. I quizzed him on his outfit — arse-less chaps, armbands on both arms and a harness. Both genres are very expensive to put together. His harness alone was $190. And, like many showgirls, the higher quality you get the more money flies out of your wallet/purse.
As another leather boy walked past it was obvious he was proud of his outfit. Throughout the night he checked it to make sure it was sitting correctly. This leather-clad warrior, looking immaculate to the trained eye, grasped his beer and chatted to his mates. A showgirl sews sequins on for hours for that completed look, ending up at the bar, chatting with friends over a drink.
It’s like a mirror image, with both styles very serious about their chosen way of life.
I chuckled to myself, knowing that if I ever want to make the switch there is still an opportunity for me to accessorise with every outfit, although I should start saving my pennies. Believe it or not, it is more expensive to put together a leather outfit than it is a full drag outfit.

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