Watch: RuPaul Reveals His Trick for Getting Over Stage Fright
RuPaul also told Rachael about the origin of his name and why he thinks kids should name themselves.
Season 12 of RuPaul's Drag Race is hitting screens at the end of February 2020—with a 90-minute special!—and to celebrate, RuPaul himself visited Rachael Ray to play one of our new favorite games, What Would Ru Do?, where viewers ask Ru for advice.
The first question came from Parker, an NYC-based drag queen—stage name Salmonella—who asked for advice on dealing with friends and family who don't agree with your career choice.
Ru didn't hesitate on his first piece of advice. "Are you making money with it?" he asked. "That's your answer." Ru then elaborated, saying that people's negative opinions often come from their own internal struggles and have nothing to do with your life path. In a nutshell, Ru's advice is, "You do you, boo."
Rach agreed. "You gotta march to your own drum," she said. Both Rach and Ru said you have to follow your own heart. "Everyone has their own GPS system built in," Ru said. This suggestion also rang true in a separate segment, where Ru explained his opinion that kids should name themselves when they turn 13.
"There's a rhythm to names," he explained, and people should be able to set that rhythm on their own terms—because it doesn't always reveal itself till later on.
On that note, Rach asked Ru where his name came from. "It's my real name," he explained. "My mother and my father were from Louisiana. Her background is Creole-French, so the 'Ru' part of my name has to do with the roux—it's not spelled the same way—but the roux of a gumbo."
Although Ru said he wishes he'd chosen a different stage name for his career, he likes that his name ties him back to his roots—and helps him when he gets nervous to perform. "Whenever I go on stage, I think about my mother's living room," where he used to perform as a child. "I think, okay, Ru, you're about to go out into momma's living room." The mindset helps trick his brain into staying calm. "I think, what's the worst that could happen?" Ru said.
Ru and Rach both agree on this—"It makes you fearless," no matter the career you're in. Thanks, Ru, for allll the good advice!