the Lone Ranger
Inspired by a Lenny Bruce routine and Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles, this story was featured in Ms. Magazine in August, 1980. (Yep, contrary to mainstream hooey, "women's libbers" had a ribald sense of humor.)
I began this story while working as Literary Coordinator for the Cincinnati YWCA Women's Art Center. Turns out that was the first women's art center in the country maybe, but we didn't know it --not until we brought in Broadway playwright Ntozake Shange for a reading and workshop. She told us she was working with others to create a women's art center in Manhattan. Which they thought would be the first. Until she heard from us.
So I heard.
Could that be true? Did women in Cincinnati get the jump on women in New York and California?
By the time The Confessions of the Lone Ranger appeared, I was working as a housepainter out in Denver. Walked into a 7/11 one day -- in my painters' whites -- and there it was on a magazine rack. With a line on the cover, "The Head-Over-Heels Factor".
My father liked that story. He could show it to his buddies without blushing.
Oboy -- just got it.
My heroine winds up as the Masked Woman. Dressed in black, she rides off into the west with Tonto by her side -- as I did. But not with Tonto. My Tonto surrogate found someone else to ride with and I rode off into the sunset alone -- as alone as you can be with a kid and an Irish Setter.
So when this story appeared, there I was -- out west -- in painter's whites. The good guys wear white. Yup, I turned myself into the Lone Ranger.
Copyright © 2007 Susan Quist