WATCH: “Rudy,” The Rugby Jock Who Werks It As A Drag Performer

It’s almost as if two ends from the gay stereotype spectrum married and ended the labels: “Rudy” Flesher, as I’m From Driftwood (a non-profit archive of LGBTQ queer stories) reveals, is a “beer-drinking, beard-sporting marathon runner” who plays college rugby. He’s a “tough-as-nails” rugby jock who moonlights as a “glamazon” drag performer.

Rudy’s toughness is explained by a situation in which he broke his nose in one of his first games but continued to play. It even led to his nickname “Rudy” (as you’ll see in the video above), but he discovered a passion even tougher — dressing in drag.

Eventually his two worlds overlapped when photos were posted on Facebook of Flesher in leather boots, a leather jock strap and a corset. Surprisingly the response was positive.

“Literally the first three people to say positive things about my first drag performance are my rugby teammates, who are my friends on Facebook.”

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  • balehead

    This is Tough as Shit???? More like another delusional queen….

  • SewperDewper


    Oh look, another hater looking to rain on someone’s parade.

  • Jackhoffsky

    @SewperDewper: They can rain on the parade all they want… it will just spread the glitter around more. :-)

  • Homophile

    He’s very cute and his drag is cool. He does seem a little needy when it comes to wanting straight approval, but we’ve all been there once or twice.

  • njrugger45

    @balehead: Cinch your waist in eight inches with coiled steel boning, walk in stilettos bigger than the average dick, and keep 100 people laughing and happy in various stages of sobriety. Yes, it’s tough. Anything else you’d like to know?

  • njrugger45

    @Jackhoffsky: Truth. It gets EVERYWHERE! ;D

  • njrugger45

    @Homophile: I could see how the video reads this way and, yes, I’ve absolutely been there. But By the time I was doing drag I feel it was less about approval, and more like an “it gets better” moment – their approval was an indicator to me that people are increasingly open to fully understanding and loving their LGBT friends, which is a key indicator in our progress towards full legal equality.

  • ncman

    So, where’s the pics of Rudy in his jock strap?

  • MikeE

    @njrugger45: I don’t quite understand (or relate to) how the drag comes into it. How is doing drag related to straight people approving or understanding someone’s homosexuality?

    I told people I was gay. I didn’t do it in drag. I did it simply as myself. Is simply being oneself not enough of a means of achieving understanding and acceptance?

    I am leery of reading “acceptance” into peoples’ reactions to someone doing drag. It seems to me more like playing into their expectations of what a gay man does: all gay men do drag, gay men only want to be women.

    Isn’t there the risk of this?

    I have nothing against drag. At one point, in my younger years, I even took great pleasure in doing drag shows with some friends. It was “theatre” to me. But it was never an integral part of my coming out process. It wasn’t in any way shape or form part of it, actually. In a certain sense, I think I was playing into expectations that an 18-yr old gay guy, not the butchest on the planet, was EXPECTED to do drag. In a way, I’d even say that – while I do have fond memories of my time on stage – it was not a particularly enriching time for my self development as a man, as a gay man, as a human being.

    In a way, doing drag, and fulfilling OTHER peoples’ expectations of me, stopped me from discovering who I really was.

    The young man in the above-linked video has “gay face” written all over him. I’d be very surprised if anyone was surprised at his coming out. I have nothing against that, I actually find it endearing. But from there to say that doing drag is what allowed him to be accepted by his rugby team mates is, to me, a stretch. In my opinion, doing drag simply confirmed the expectations that his team mates had of him.

    ok, flame away.
    but I DID try to be reasonable.

  • Publius

    @MikeE: So…what? Should people NOT do drag just because it’s “what’s expected” and therefore they should to the opposite? You tried it, learned a few things, and ultimately decided it wasn’t for you. That’s a totally human process. Big whoop.

  • MikeE

    @Publius: so, you didn’t actually read what I wrote, did you.
    that’s ok, I don’t expect any more or less from Queerty’s usual stable of commentators.

Comments are closed.