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An Interview With Amsterdam's very own Gay Granny

by Jakko ter Borg in Scene , 27 January 2019

Dit artikel is ook in het Nederlands beschikbaar
length: 4 minuten

‘Gay Bars Are the Most Fun, Gay People Talk to Everyone’. Every Tuesday, a hysterical drag bingo is held at The Queen’s Head, and every week, she is there with her bingo tickets. Eighty-one-year-old Tini van Amerongen is Amsterdam’s biggest and oldest drag bingo fan.

However, she does not limit herself in the gay scene to bingo.

Bingo host Coby van Dam decided to ask this well-known gay granny some questions while enjoying some sweet white wine and a spaghetti Bolognese.

Coby: “Tini, why are you here every Tuesday?”
Tini: “Playing bingo!”

Coby: “Yes, but why here? Why not a bingo for seniors?”
Tini: “I didn’t feel at ease at the bingos for seniors. Here, it is cosy. You are witty, and every week is like a party. Plus, the prizes are great!”

Coby: “Yes, I have noticed that you win quite a lot, for instance that Mega Bingo last year. Didn’t you win that as well?”
Tini: “Yes, I won the Mega Bingo with Daan, who recently became the new manager of Café The Queen’s Head.”

Coby: “So, that was five hundred euros each?”
Tini: “Yes, I used the money to go to Sitges.”

Coby: “Unbelievable! You get to go to Sitges, while I have to stay here? Okay, tell me: How long have you been playing bingo here?”
Tini: “I have been coming to Café The Queen’s Head for about seven years now, but started playing bingo around five years ago. Windy Mills was hosting it then.”

Coby: “So, in dog years that is thirty-five years, I am in sync with my twelve chihuahuas, you see. How time flies, Tini! And why the bingo here? Why not a ‘normal’ bingo?”
Tini: “Because yours is so cosy and exciting! The Tuesday night bingo at The Queen’s Head is always festive, with real atmosphere! And I think your bar is so beautiful.”

Coby: “Do you have something against the breeders, perhaps?”
Tini: “Not at all, but The Queen’s Head and the other gay places I visit in Amsterdam are the most fun. Gay people talk to everyone. In straight bars, people are somewhat more distant.”

Coby: “Where else do you go then?”
Tini: “Every Thursday night I can be found at the Taboo, and once in a while I go to Queers on the Amstel. Also, to the Kalff and Body Talk in Utrecht.”

Coby: “You must be well-known in the gay scene then, Tini. You go to gay places more often than gays do! How do you keep it up?”
Tini: “Coffee with Baileys, and sleep in every day until 10.30.”

Coby: “You really are a night owl, Tini, or perhaps more of a night flamingo? I heard you have a flamingo fetish?!”
Tini: “Yes, I’m collecting flamingos. That is why it is such great fun that I can often win flamingo prizes at your bingo!”

Coby: “Yes, that’s not entirely coincidental. But how did you develop this fetish?”
Tini: “My son Ruud gave me my first flamingo, after which I started collecting them. It all got a little bit out of hand.”

Coby: “And now your house is full of flamingos?”
Tini: “Yes, I have almost everything in flamingo style: a watering can, a toilet brush, cups, lamps, nearly anything you can think of.”

Coby: “It was your son Ruud who took you to a gay bar for the very first time?”
Tini: “Yes, with Ruud I went to the Zeedijk for the very first time. First to the Engel, enjoying the sun on the terrace.”

Coby: “A wonderfully sweet gay son, a house full of flamingos, everything your heart desires I imagine. Are there any other things you’d like to win?”
Tini: “Yes, a flamingo of course!”

Coby: “Ha-ha, well, Tini, we’ll look into that. What is a wise lesson for life that you as the gay granny of Amsterdam can teach us?”
Tini: “Do not beat about the bush, but be true to yourself. And don’t wear that tracksuit out, but save it for the gym.”

Coby: “Now, that is useful, Tini. Thank you so much for this in-depth interview. If you bring more of those tasty stuffed eggs next Tuesday, I’ll start looking for more flamingo prizes!”
Tini: “Deal!”

The drag bingo at Café The Queen’s Head, Zeedijk 20, is held every Tuesday night and starts at 21:00. Visit for more information.  





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