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Boys Who Like Girls Who Are Boys

And now Catherine gets to examine all the items found in the back-alley surgeon's office. Of particular note: the cylinder wrapped with gauze is actually a tube of toothpaste -- probably your first indication that you're not dealing with someone who has ready supply to medical supply catalogues -- and that toothpaste has a bloody fingerprint on it. So someone was mucking around with something bloody, picked up the tube, then wrapped the gauze around it...and did what? I mean, if this is what the back-alley surgeon used to "fix the portal" (as it were) then why didn't they wrap it ahead of time? It would seem like poor time management to halt a penis-inversion procedure to loop some gauze around a tube of toothpaste.

But I'm getting bogged down in petty details. There's also time for Mia to find sweat still pooled in the two-day old glove. I don't care how climate-controlled that storage locker was, even my sweat-soaked marathon-running shirt dried out in a day -- and that was with it wadded up and crammed in a suitcase. This is the second piece of evidence in this montage I've found odd. Only Nicky's AFIS discovery that the dead person is one Vern Saldusky, a.k.a. "Tawny," "Peaches," or "Vava," is remotely interesting, and that's because -- well, who wouldn't be amused by someone named Vava working at the Cockpit on Budlong Avenue? It sounds so comically prurient.

And now Nicky and Gil are at the Cockpit. Nicky awkwardly asks the bartender -- who looks as though she's just begun hormones -- if she knows of Vern, a.k.a. Peaches, and the bartender totally smacks him down with, "Just a second, honey." Gil smirks. Nicky's all, "Oh...kay." We get a look around at all the businessmen making time with the ladies -- this is like a taxi dancing place, only with transsexuals. How retro-deviant! And then the bartender sends them back to talk to Mercedes. Nicky reflexively says, "Thank you." "You're welcome," the bartender says, not backing down on eye contact. "Thanks," Nicky says nervously. Heh. I bet Gil brought Nicky along just to blow his mind. And just once, I would love it if there were one of these cases where the CSIs are dealing with some incredibly immersive and arcane subculture, and Nicky was inexplicably well-versed in it. There Warrick and Gil would be, eyes popping as they tried to figure out what was going on, and people would be emerging from steaming vats of bouillon or stripping off Japanese tentacle monster costumes, and yelling out, "Nick! Hey, big guy! I thought this was your night off?"

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