My boot

I’m seeing Madonna live on Thursday. I’ve been reminded of this as Clare is playing her latest album, Madame X, yet again so as to familiarise me with it. It’s not optional so I’m hearing it, plus I’m driving so there’s not much I can do about it.

Clare’s normally quite a cautious co-driver but now Madonna is blaring out the speakers which is distracting to say the least. Clare occasionally interjects with “It’s orange!” or “Mind the pavement!” but apart from that I’m allowed to drive and enjoy Madame X uninterupred. Clare informs me that Madonna has a big gay following which I know because she’s already told me about five times, plus it was on a BBC documentary I was made to watch last night. Now we’re on track 6 and Madonna starts by singing “I will be gay, if the gays are burned” It’s one of her slow, politically-charged songs. Now she’s “an Israeli, if Israelis are incarcerated” which Clare tells me she replaces for “Palestinians” when she sings it live. That sets off a thought in my mind but it doesn’t go anywhere, so I let it go.

While Madonna has been progressing in her international solidarity ballad moving from “gay” to “poor” to “Native Indian”, I press the button that locks the boot of my car as I remember I have my bag with my passport there and am paranoid someone will just open the boot and take it. Now Clare is asking me to guess how much she paid for our Madonna tickets which I don’t care to do as I fear it will lead to me being asked to contribute. Instead I wonder what caused my left arm to reach out like that and lock the boot at that precise moment. I usually remember to press the lock button at red traffic lights while the car is stationary, but I managed this in a flash, while driving.

I work my way backwards and connect it to the moment Clare told me about our front row seats and Madonna’s gay following, after which I visualised myself in a concert full of gay men behind me, who for some reason all had facial hair. At that precise moment my left arm reached out and pressed the button locking my boot, suggesting I was concerned someone behind me might gain access to it, which in retrospect seems homoerotic to say the least. 

This is now setting off a stream of thoughts which I’m unable to contain: Why do I usually think of my boot being accessed at red traffic lights? A forbidden pleasure perhaps? Why did I imagine gay men with beards? Is it that I have a beard? Also, my boot is behind me and right now it is sounding a lot like my booty. I never thought of ‘boot’ sounding like ‘booty’ before, but then again I have never thought of myself as having a booty.

Madonna’s at the chorus now. She sings “I know what I am, and I know what I’m not” which is beginning to sound rather profound. Maybe I’ve misunderstood her. Maybe this is why she has a large gay following, because she understands the multiple facets of human sexuality and speaks to us all. Maybe she is speaking to me – but what is she saying? This is too much to work out while driving. Plus I may be overthinking it, as all the years of psychotherapy can backfire sometimes – but even ‘backfire’ seems sexually loaded now. 

Anyway, I’m driving, so I won’t unlock my boot because my passport is there, which is too precious to be stolen by a stranger at a red traffic light. Or perhaps, I won’t unlock my booty because my heterosexual identity is there, which is too precious to be stolen by a gay man in a moment of forbidden pleasure.

Well that’s cleared things up. Thank you Madonna.

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