These past couple of weekends, in lieu of attending social functions or interacting with my peers in a cheerful manner, I have been immersing myself in culture and carrying out my quest for knowledge. Read: watching a lot of TV and surfing the internet. Read: watching Parks and Recreation, Skins, and RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix with brief interludes of googling pictures of young Leonardo DiCaprio. I’m not ashamed, even though my need for RuPaul and her girls is hard to explain to others.

At dance practice this Saturday, my friend was all, “Katherine, all you did last night was eat pizza and watch TV. Are you really going to do that again?” And I was all, “MMMM YES.” Then she gave me some serious judge-y eyes and went off to go square dance or whatever. BOTTOM LINE IS, it would be really difficult to explain to her why I needed to go home and watch the season-three finale of Drag Race on Netflix with my brother. Getting home to watch the finale was super important because I needed Raja to win. Raja is everything. She has this androgynous style of drag and is charismatic and well-spoken and stuff. Raja is sickening.

If high school was a cookie, I would be a raisin. Raisins are nice. I like raisins because they are wrinkly, sweet, chewy, and delicious. However, many people overlook raisins or give them a bad rap because they feel like raisins ruin a cookie or can’t stand up to the goodness of chocolate chips. (Chocolate chips are all hype, lemme tell ya!) Anyway, when I watch the ladies of Drag Race walk down the runway or lip-sync for their lives, I feel proud to be a raisin. The beautiful queens behind the show and the amount of hard work that goes into their art fascinate me, and occasionally make me cry. I feel like I found an older sister in Carmen Carrera, a model for sincerity in Alexis Mateo, and a great source of inspiration in Raja. How do you not tear up when Alexis says that her drag persona is the most beautiful woman in the world? Also, how do you not totally lose your cool when you see this coming down the runway?

I haven’t done the best job here explaining my FEELINGS about this show, and I apologize—but it’s really hard to put them into words! It’s just that when I watch, I feel like I’m there with the contestants—like part of their family. And they support one another like a family. After the ladies lip-sync for their lives, competing against one another, they hug. These drag queens have been teaching me that there are all sorts of beautiful out there. And when I watch this gorgeous group perform, it makes me want to cover myself in sequins and tell my friends how beautiful I think they are. ♦