Britney likes the word dyke.
With lesbian, its too easy to put lipstick on it, dress it up in perfect clothes and turn it into something easy, something sorority sisters do to turn on their jock boyfriends when blowjobs just aren’t doing it anymore. A phase, a fad, something that passes. Lesbian is something pink, something pretty. Something fake. Britney’s had enough of people trying to dumb things down, make them soft and meaningless, all because its her doing it.
It was that way when she got her tattoo. It wasn’t like she’d gotten it to shock anyone, but she didn’t expect them to treat it like a little girl thing, some teenage rebellion. Granted, it was a fairy, a little baby pink thing with wings, but she likes fairies. She knows all about the real fairies, too, the ones from Ireland who died and fought and fucked just like normal people. They had wings, only not in the literal sense.
When all of it falls away, Britney plans to get wings, big as life over her shoulder blades. It’ll hurt like fuck, but it’ll be worth it.
The fairy had hurt. Right on the small of her back, one of the most painful places to get it, but she’d just gritted her teeth and took the pain, turned it into something else. After that it had been bleeding red for days, until it finally scabbed over black, a hard little charcoal shell in the form of a winged girl, like the chrysalis for an angel. And then it had fallen off, and the tattoo was perfect, no matter what people said about it.
Its not just the little things, like the tattoos. The meaning is stripped out of everything she does, everything she says. If she talks about how she feels they don’t focus on her words, but instead how she says them, tongue tripping over her emotions, voice uncertain but impassioned. If she writes songs, then they take the melodies at face value, or pay attention to what she wears while she’s singing them. If she strips down to nothing but a thin layer of nylon and her talent, people just all her a naughty little tease because they don’t see the person behind the skin.
Even her movie…it was supposed to be different. It wasn’t supposed to be a girl movie; it wasn’t supposed to be anything. In her head it was formless, joyous. Her and a car and her girlfriends, screaming along to the radio so they could hear each other over the wind. Driving too fast on the open road, talking and laughing and just being with each other.
There wasn’t supposed to be a guy.
But Britney’s character had to have a love interest, no matter what Britney herself spouted about it being about girls and their friendship and the very special kind of love they had with each other. It was bullshit, but it was the kind of bullshit that her people usually bought.
Unfortunately, the people the studio sent over were not her people, and the writer only knew enough of her to provide ample screen time for her navel in the script. Britney still thinks someone, somewhere, recognized her movie as a dyke flick and sent over some teen writers to defuse the situation.
Lucy got her love interest.
Anson, Justin, Ben, Nick, Steve, whatever. They’re boys. Britney expresses her love for them, for boys, in interviews because she does love them. JC, Justin, Andre, Nick, Wade. These are people who have been with her since she started, people who love her. Their sex is really secondary.
Boys, though, the song? Well, no one knew what Vogue was really about either. They don’t get that Britney in the video, in the suit with her hair slicked back, is the real Britney. They don’t get that when Britney put on that pinstriped suit a year ago, she wasn’t trying to be sexy, she was trying to celebrate her sexuality.
Never mind that she stripped it all off to reveal flash and glitter beneath. That she stopped singing so she could shake her ass to the beat. It was that first part that she fought for, that first part that she got. Her and a fedora and wide lapels, her and her real voice singing a song written for a man, and her doing it twice as well.
But it doesn’t matter what people think of the song, or of the video. Or of the performance, or of her and Anson, or her and Justin, or even of the goddamn movie. It doesn’t matter if Crossroads isn’t hers anymore, because it served its purpose. It was Britney and a car and her girls in the backseat.
It was long nights in her hotel room, long afternoons in her trailer, long mornings holding hands in the back of the car, so the camera wouldn’t see. Crossroads may have made her fake love for another boy, another friend willing to be her beard, but she was used to that. Crossroads also brought her Zoe.
Britney got her love interest.
For everyone who liked Crossroads.
Note: Zoe is Zoe Saldana, one of Brit’s co-stars. I think she’s cute as hell, and she and Brit hit my slash-o-meter. But its just fiction, people.