I simply wasn’t ready for the Press Conference. I was told by the manager and the lady from PR that everything would be OK. That they would not let it get out of hand. They would protect me. My name is Tiko. I’m 18 – an international footballer – and a cross-dresser! Startling revelations had been leaked about my cross-dressing ‘secrets’ – photos of me in a gorgeous red dress and an electric blonde wig; back home in the Zebra Night Club in Nilemwe. All over the TV and the UK press! My club Melchester City said they would hold a press conference to explain the confusion surrounding the revelation.
I wasn’t ready for any press conference. I’d never been to a press conference. I wasn’t sure what a press conference was. I was very scared. I wasn’t ready. Now? Now I’d be ready. A dozen blinding electric flashes exploded onto my face the moment I entered the crowded room. I put up a protective hand but this only served to make me look guilty. The manager and the PR lady led me to a seat on the dais. I tripped and stumbled and someone laughed. I was dressed in a dark blue suit and knitted blue tie –in an attempt to make me look macho. My hair – my beautifully long spiralling locks had been chopped mercilessly into short back and shorter sides. Someone had even suggested a tattoo. I sat. Looking scared. Looking eleven.
Buzzing and crowded the room overpowered me! I heard coarse laughter and snippets of scatology. The faces of the assembled journalists were harsh and shrewd. On the dais I must have looked desolate.
“Good morning, gentlemen,” said the PR “we feel it appropriate that today’s session last no longer than fifteen minutes. The club has already issued a comprehensive statement and there is little further…” But she didn’t get any further. The press were impatient and they just let rip. Questions were pumped in total disregard for press conference protocol. A French Revolutionary Tribunal. A reign of error.
“Tiko? Were you and Oscar Azzini lovers?”
Is it true you was once a rent boy?
Tiko! Did you take part in gay orgies?
What kinda parties Tiko? Leather or lace?
Tiko, where do you go for your kicks here in the UK?
Tiko? Is it easier to find boyfriends now you’re famous?
Do you wear a jock strap when you’re playing? Loud cackling laughter. Or panties Tiko? Cackles, chortles, chuckles. Ha ha! All in good sport!
I couldn’t stop the tears. I didn’t know what to say. I wasn’t ready. Now I would be ready. You should read RED DRESS REVOLUTION. All the details are in there. How a young Africa kid is mercilessly and viciously verbally attacked by low life reporters from the tabloids – merely because he feels an inclination to explore and express the female side of his nature.
Next time I will be ready. Next time I will know what to say.