Drag Queen Murdered For Dinner

I start with this caveat. Killing somebody over inadequate dinner preparation is never justified. It just cannot be condoned.

That being said, it was an interesting end to a unusual relationship when Frank Bowles killed his boyfriend, Skitty litteramuel Collins. Collins was a long time drag queen performer in the Atlanta area, or so I’m told but I have no personal knowledge of that. Collins and Bowles had been in a long term relationship when the demise of Collins occurred. Collins, I presume, did not wear the pants in the relationship and on this occasion was making dinner but in a manner considered unsatisfactory by Bowles. Bowles shot Collins and when captured he confessed to the killing, which always makes it easier for everybody, well, except the killer.

Collins’ career as a drag queen started in 1972 and spanned 200 clubs in 12 states I am told. She, or is it he, I can never be sure when talking about a drag queen, was known as “Kitty Litter.” What a bizarre name that by itself conjures up some unpleasantness. Did she stink? Was he trashy? Oh, it could get worse but this is a family newspaper. Collins was 60 at the time of his death. His family had eloquent words for the killer: “Frank, you are not a bad guy but you did a very bad thing,” Carrie Gunning said. “A thing that cannot be taken back or changed. And because of this bad thing we buried our brother.”  That “bad person” and “bad thing” conundrum will have to wait for another day. however I too am sorry about Kitty Litter’s passing. Drag queens are, after all, quite the staple of many a rock band.

Previously I told you that “Lola” by The Kinks was not a love song but a song about a transvestite. The give away was the closing lyric: “But I know what I am and I’m glad I’m a man, And so is Lola.”

So now I move to Aerosmith’s “Dude Looks Like A Lady.” As with many rock songs, there is a dispute about the origins of Dude. Aerosmith says it came about from hanging out with Motley Crue (long haired heavy metal band) and that the Crue said “dude this” and “dude that” all the time. Motley Crue says that it came from hanging out in bars with Steven Tyler of Aerosmith. Tyler now absolutely looks like an old lady. Sorry Caitlynn! The waiters in a bar were dressed like ladies and Tyler supposedly said “dude looks like a lady.” Either way, from that we get great lyrics which include: “Never judge a book by it’s cover. Or who you gonna love by your lover. Sayin’ love put me wise to her love in disguise. She had the body of a Venus, Lord imagine my surprise.”

“Dude Looks Like A Lady” went to Number 4 on the charts and “Lola” made it to Number 9, albeit 17 years earlier in a different era.

Kelly Burke, master attorney, former district attorney and magistrate judge, is engaged in private practice. He writes about the law, rock’n’roll and politics. These articles are not designed to give legal advice, but are designed to inform the public about how the law affects their daily lives. Contact Kelly at kelly@burkelasseterllc.com to comment on this article or suggest articles that you’d like to see and visit his website at www.kellyrburke.com to view prior columns.

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