business decisions

What’s a Self-Storage Manager To Do With a Customer Using The Place to Change Into His Drag Clothes?

Two phrases I never thought I’d string together: “cross-dressing” and “self-storage units.” The manager of a self-storage company posted a query on a forum for, uh, self-storage types about what to do with a customer who walks into his storage unit as a man and walks out as a woman. Refuse to do business with him? Or go to his drag show?

“I have a very bizarre problem,” writes hurlco in a thread he started titled “Here comes a drag queen?,” Hurlco “rented to a guy who now visits his space as a man, changes clothes and emerges as a woman. He does not look very convincing, in fact, he’s quite ugly as a woman. I now have other customers complaining about the freakishness of this guy. Two other customers have now told me that if he doesn’t leave, they are moving out. Has anyone encountered this before? Can I kick him out? Can we be sued for asking him to leave or stop his drag queening?”

When the first person (Lisa T) to respond asked hurlco “If he emerged as a good-looking shapely woman, would you still want to kick him out?,” hurlco responed: “Well, I know that, that would make the situation more palatable, however, my concern is for the tenants that feel squeemish about his antics. My boss thinks I should kick his “gay butt” out of here! (Not my words).”

Here’s another suggestion from user ssmgr: “You don’t kick him out – you don’t renew his lease. Send him the required notice of lease termination according to your lease agreement. Usually cross dressers are harmless but if you are going to lose customers then do not renew his monthly lease.”

Some more reasonable, albeit imperfect responses follow:

• Wow. I have never heard of this being a problem. Personally, I wouldn’t kick him out. Just get to know him a little and then explain to your concerned tenants that he is ok. Your tenants trust you…..why should you lose any customers?? He is not a criminal….

• I wouldn’t kick him out, I’d just let him know that using the unit for the purposes other than storage ( such as changing ) is not allowed. Be polite, be understanding, but just let him know that it’s nor acceptable.

• hmmm. this is 2010. I would say you should get to know him/her and just let him know not everyone is as accepting as some people and that maybe he should not change in the unit, If this happened here I would not “kick him out” But I would tell him he really shouldnt change in his unit, and tell the other people he is harmless as I am sure he is. THat is ONE weird situation you have there, keep us posted.

• Tread very carefully, or you could be facing a lawsuit.

Well that depends: His city or state would need a law barring LGBT discrimination. So where is hurlco’s company located? Hard to tell, but perhaps Texas or Arizona. As we learn from another thread hurlco started, titled “Should I have accepted Mexican pesos?,” (where he asks “Can I legally refuse mexican money?” from a non-Mexican customer), his “facility is very near the mexican border.”

Leave it to user Jughead to offer the most reasonable comment:

Hurlco, Lisa T is right, there is a difference between a crossdresser and a transsexual. But that being said, I have two cross dressers, one a biker and the other just an average looking guy. They keep their dresses here and I don’t mind them changing in their space as long as they close the door. I have asked them NOT to come into the office in drag as it always startles my tenants. The one guy named Steve/Stephanie looks better in drag, the other guy, yikes! Actually, my biker guy referred us to Steve/Stephanie.

Maybe you should post an ad on advertising that you cater to alternative lifestyles. There may be a market here!

Except then this post took the ultimate of twists! hurlco tells the thread:

I want to thank everyone for your input on this rather unusual situation. The tenant came into the office this morning dressed normally and asked me to attend his drag show at a local bar on Friday night. By the way, I am not gay and I have references. Anyway, I am curious to attend the drag show since I have never been to one. But, it just seems freaky to attend anything that a tenant appears in, much less a drag show. If I attend, he will see that as my acceptance of his unconventional lifestyle. My boss says that if he makes a spectacle of himself on the property that he must leave. I want to be fair as I don’t really see anything wrong with what he is doing. I guess the question is, if he offends other tenants or makes them view the facility in an unfavorable light, should I ask him to move to Public Storage?

As this readership knows, a man walking around dressed as a woman — in “drag” costume or simply because he identifies, at least part time, as a woman — is not grounds to be “offended.” And when I first started reading this thread I assumed the customer might be using his storage unit as his secret hiding place for his cross-dressing life, away from his wife and kids, and he simply happens to change in the same place he stores his women’s clothes. But now it’s clear the dude really is a drag performer, and maybe he doesn’t have enough closet space for all those sequins, so really, who gives a shit?

The storage unit’s owners, that’s who — they don’t want to lose “offended” customers.

So I say go with the above idea about he Craigslist ad, only go one step further: Start giving this guy free storage space if he name drops your self-storage company when he’s on stage.

[via Inside Self Storage]

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #business #discrimination #dragqueens stories and more


  • Tina

    Believe it or not, I’ve heard of this kind of thing before when a younger, just-blossoming transgendered person is just starting to explore, and they don’t have a safe place to change before going out. I wish instead of just hyping it and making bad jokes, Queerty would discuss the fact that usually yes, it IS against the law to kick these people out.

  • Aunt Sharon

    Being offended and threatening to leave is one thing, but how many of these customers would actually go through the hassle of packing up and trucking their stuff to another facility. Not many, I’d bet. Paradoxically, I think the more the guy keeps to himself, the more the disturbed customers’ imaginings run wild. If they knew that he was a performer preparing for work, it would puncture the discomfort of most. Nothing sinister going on here.

  • Miss Understood

    This story ounds like a hoax. How often would other customers ever see this guy? People don’t tend to spend much time in their storage units.

  • TruthTeller

    Hmmm……I’d suggest he wait til the drag queen goes into the storage unit and then lock the door on him, but that would only give the drag queen the opportunity to ham it up by banging on the walls and screaming, “I want to live !”

  • ewe

    Why would anyone want to kick out such fabulous creativity? I say shine a spotlight on his exit or entrance depending how one views it and play some show tunes too. These people are way to dull and negative.

  • Theo

    The complainers are typical unsecured / in-confident about themselves whether it is in term of sexuality or religion or else. They are also simply the represent of self-righteous folks who want to maintain their perceived higher privilege as heterosexual. These are very selfish folks. No doubt.


    Enact comprehensive federal anti-discrimination legislation, civil unions as the centerpiece, and no one would be asking this question.

    Such legislation would have passed with moderate to little controversy, if the Log Cabin Republicans had not seen to it that legislation concerning a small subset– could it possibly be 10 percent, i.e., naive and conflicted gays who want to join the military, or stay in it?– of GLBT people came to the Senate floor first and did not win the 60-40 supermajority necessary to stop the Republican filibuster. Now it is likely that no GLBT-friendly legislation will pass through Congress for the remainder of President Obama’s first administration.

    And you gay political know-nothings had better come out and vote for him as a bloc if you don’t want REPUBLICANS passing ANTI-gay legislation from 2013 to 2016!! Christ on a dildo! You people are shonuff self-destructive! The LCRs betrayed us all (I’m the “B” of GLBT). They made sure that the activist agenda of the GLBT civil rights movement was what THEIR conflicted Republican asses wanted, not what would benefit each and every gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered person. They are REPUBLICANS FIRST, and GLBT people sometime, somewhere else.

    Politics is the art of achieving the possible. For Log Cabin Republicans, who are manifestly following the orders of the Republican Party like Ss under a D, it is the art of scuttling the possible. They done it, y’all. If you– we– do not prevent them henceforth from approaching the levers of power in this nation, they will do it again and again. Remember, a whole wing of the Party from which they are taking orders would like to see gays hanging from ropes (or crosses!!) Republicans HATE you, and the LCR variety is helping them to keep that hate institutionalized.

    No anonymous, stupid comments from me. I am

    William P. Homans

    who came out in Vietnam decades before DADT was ever heard of. Bill Clinton was an antiwar demonstrator on a Fulbright scholarship in Europe while I was serving. Wake up! Get a clue!

Comments are closed.