Sunday, September 30, 2007
For the past two or three days, my interest in crossdressing has been very low. I don't know why and I don't know how long it will last.
I have these doldrums about once or twice a year. I am sure they will pass and soon I will be looking forward to an opportunity to pass.
And so it goes.
Saturday, September 29, 2007
You are receiving this email because I need your leadership and your voice in organizing the area's first ever Transgender Pride March and Rally in 2008. It's time to bring the transgender communities in the western Massachusetts, southern Vermont, and Connecticut areas together and have a day of celebration and organizing.
Because it's not enough to be "included" in the Gay Pride Parades. Because the Transgender Day of Remembrance should not be the only time we get together and have a community rally. Because we have important trans-inclusive legislation pending in Connecticut and Massachusetts that we need to pass to protect ourselves.
I'm counting on you to forward this email to all trans-related groups in the area, including all five colleges queer/trans groups, East Coast Female to Male Group, Unity of the Pioneer Valley, TREE, Twenty Club, Sunshine Club, Brattleboro Trans Group, MTPC, and any organizations or groups that I missed.
The first organizational meeting is on NOVEMBER 1, 2007, 7pm-9pm
Media Education Foundation
60 Masonic Street
Northampton, Massachusetts 01060
Friday, September 28, 2007
Even as the Senate passed a hate crimes bill sought for a decade by gays and lesbians, House Democratic leaders decided Thursday to strip transgender people from another long-languishing civil rights bill, generating dismay in the gay community and furious but fruitless lobbying for more time.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and Reps. George Miller, D-Martinez, Barney Frank, D-Mass., and Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., believe they lack the votes in the Democrat-controlled House to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act if it includes gender identity along with sexual orientation as a prohibited ground for firing an employee.
Oddly enough, the hate crimes bill that passed the Senate Thursday includes transgender people and won 60-39, the supermajority necessary to beat a Republican filibuster. All 49 Senate Democrats voted for it, along with two independents and nine Republicans.
Read the whole story here.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Those three categories (views, favorites, and comments) are simple statistical counts.
Flickr also has a category called "interestingness" and I have no idea how they calculate it. According to flickr's own blog, "interestingness is a ranking algorithm based on user behavior around the photos taking into account some obvious things like how many users add the photo to their favorites and some subtle things like the relationship between the person who uploaded the photo and the people who are commenting (plus a whole bunch of secret sauce)."
Anyway, as of today, here are my most popular photos on flickr.
Why this photo is considered to be most interesting stumps me! I admit it is a good photo and I look OK in it, but there are other photos that are just as good, if not better in my humble opinion.
Views and Favorites
This photo is ranked as having the most views (7288) and as being named a "favorite" by other people (27). It is not a very good photo. My eyes are half-closed and I am not looking at the camera, but show a little leg and I guess that does the trick. By the way, my second most popular photo in these two categories is also a leggy shot: me posing in my Playboy bunny Halloween costume.
This photo has received the most comments (12) and it is one of my favorite photos, so there will be no arguments from me!
Monday, September 24, 2007
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Out of the blue, I received a flickr e-mail informing me that someone on flickr named "Robyn1967" had dubbed me as one of their Contacts. The e-mail asked if I would like to dub Robyn1967 as one of my Contacts, too.
I get these new Contact e-mails about four or five times per week and when I do, I check out the person's flickr profile to decide whether to make them my Contact, too.
When I arrived at Robyn1967's flickr profile, I was surprised. Most of my Contacts are other crossdressers; very few are genetic woman. It was obvious from her photos that Robyn1967 was a genetic woman; so I thought, until I started reading her photo captions.
I was "Wow'd." Her photos were wonderful and her story was fascinating. Among other things, Robyn lived and worked as a woman, which is one of my unfulfilled dreams.
I quickly added Robyn as a Contact and made plans to read her blog bio later.
Out of the blue, I received an e-mail from Robyn. She thanked me for reciprocating Contact-wise, then complimented my flickr photos. "You look REAL, sis, which from me is the ultimate compliment in that area." Boy, I'll say!
I dropped everything and read Robyn's bio. I found that we had a lot in common, not only the usual crossdresser life experience stuff, but other things crossdressing and non-crossdressing related.
We exchanged more e-mails and upgraded each other's status from Contact to Friend. I hope this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship. I highly recommend viewing her photos and reading her story.
Friday, September 21, 2007
Entering the store, I did not see the Jo, but another saleswoman, Tiffany, greeted me. I asked for Jo, but she was on another assignment. I explained I had photos to show Jo and Tiffany seemed interested, so I asked if she wanted to see them. She did.
She gushed over the photos and told me when Jo would be back so that I could show her the photos, too.
Since I was in the store, I asked what was new and Tiffany showed me a plaid belted coat to die for. I tried it on, but my arms are too long or the coat sleeves too short. Too bad... I would have bought the coat on the spot.
I check the statistics everyday and it is interesting to see the international audience of this blog. For example, during the past 24 hours, this blog had visitors from the following countries: Algeria, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nepal, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Slovakia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States.
I was a little surprised to see war-torn Iraq in the list!
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Currently, Ms. Romijn plays a post-op male-to-female transsexual on the ABC television series Ugly Betty.
Today, GayWired.com has an interesting story about Ms. Romijn and her portrayal of a transwoman on Ugly Betty. Here is the link to the story titled Ten Minutes with Rebecca Romijn.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
After posting yesterday's blog entry, I searched the Internet for answers and found an excellent article on the Gender Evolve web site, which is an excellent site for male-to-female transwomen.
The article is called What do Genetic Women really think about us? If you read the article, also read the comments after the article; they are well worth reading.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
I don't understand why the other women are often very enthusiastic when they encounter a crossdresser that is not their spouse or SO (not that there is anything wrong with that).
I frequently encounter other women who gush over my crossdressing. Believe me, I love their appreciation for what I am doing, but I am at a loss as to the reason for their appreciation.
Maybe some of the women who gush over crossdressers get some satisfaction from the fact that a member of the so-called "dominant sex" is trying to emulate a member of the so-called "weaker sex." ("Welcome to our club.")
Maybe some women admire crossdressers for being true to themselves.
I dunno. It's just another conundrum in a long line of conundrums that crossdressers encounter.
Monday, September 17, 2007
That blog posting sounds like I am bragging, but I really did receive a lot of nice comments about my appearance Friday night and that makes me feel good about my en femme self. There is too much guilt and self-hatred among transpeople and I just want to spread the word that a transperson can also feel great about herself; how can you not help feeling great about yourself when you receive compliments! Friday night, I felt good about myself... real good!
Other random thoughts about Friday night...
The shoes I wore were surprisingly comfortable despite their 4-3/4-inch heels. I could not wear them while driving my car to and from the event because it was impossible and probably dangerous to manipulate the brake, clutch, and gas pedals wearing those shoes (I wore more sensible high heels for the trip), but I wore them all night at the fashion show and was not hobbled like I have been by shorter high heels.
I live in the boonies and don't have many neighbors. As a result, except for silver/gray SUVs (they all look alike to me), I recognize the vehicles my neighbors drive and I am sure they recognize my Subaru (it's the only green vehicle in the neighborhood).
Friday night, as I drove away from home on my way to the fashion show, I recognized a vehicle coming from the opposite direction. Due to its darkened windshield, I could not see the driver, but I am sure whoever was driving recognized my car, but I wonder if they recognized the driver. If the wife was driving, she might ask me about it because I often run into her walking her dog when I walk our dogs.
I met a young woman at the show, who has the same name as my daughter except that she spells it differently than my daughter, who was named after Halley's Comet. Turns out they are the same age, too, born only 9 days apart. Small world!
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Avon just came out with a new mascara called Uplifting. I tried it for the first time yesterday and I think it is the best mascara product I have ever used (and I have used a lot of mascara over the years). Uplifting goes on smoothly and the applicator separates the eyelashes so that the lashes do not stick together. Even after multiple applications, the lashes remain separated.
Also, I recommend an Avon lipstick that is new, but not brand new. It is called Glazewear. I tried it for the first time yesterday and I like it because it has a gloss like lip gloss without having to use a lip gloss and the gloss is not overpowering like some lip glosses.
The event took place in the bar of Tommy's Restaurant in Middletown, CT. The bar itself stretched the length of the building. Next to the bar were two rows of tables. There was also a deck at the rear of the building.
We were supposed to model by walking down the aisle between the tables, up the aisle next to the bar, then outside on the deck. There were three marks where we were supposed to stop briefly to let everyone get a better look at what we were wearing.
By show time, the place was packed. It was so crowded that it was difficult to get through the crowd. I practiced walking like a model for weeks, but it was all for naught because I could only walk a few steps, then I would have to slow down or stop to negotiate around people blocking the path. I never saw the second mark and the third mark was blocked each time I modeled. The crowd was enthusiastic and cheered us on, but I was disappointed in the set-up that we models had to endure.
I wore two outfits, but I only have photos of one to show you. The photos of the second outfit are too poor. Other people were taking photos of the event and perhaps, I will show up in one of those.
It was an interesting crowd. The majority were women. The minority were male or transpeople.
I had some interesting conversations with some of the women. They were all very friendly. Four or five complimented my nails. They thought they were acrylics that I had done in a nail shop. Actually, my nails are the pre-glued press-on nails that Revlon sells (their "Maximum Speed" brand). They take about five minutes to put on, look great, and usually stay on until I want to take them off (by soaking my hands in warm water).
I also received a lot of compliments about my overall look. "Gorgeous," "fabulous," "I love it," and "you were the best" were words that I recall.
Both my outfits had revealing necklines, so I had to have something to reveal. In the past, I've taped my breasts to simulate cleavage. However, no matter what kind of tape I used, there was always slippage and my cleavage would fade away as time marched on. And when I removed the tape, I almost always tore some of my skin.
Years ago, I bought a specialty bra for women like me. Instead of cups like a normal bra, this bra has pads that you position on the outer side of each breast, then when you hook the bra, the pads press the breasts together to create cleavage. You wear a low cut real bra over that with your favorite choice of breast forms. The concept is good, but the slippage was worse than with tape.
I thought about how to improve that bra and came up with the idea to use spirit gum to prevent slippage. I tried it for the first time yesterday. I applied spirit gum on each breast in the area where they mated with the pads to cause the pads stick to my breasts and, voila! there was no slippage. I had more cleavage than anyone else in that bar and it lasted all night long!
I met a couple (women), who complimented me (they said I was the "best" in the fashion show). They were both tall. One was actually 6'2" (same as me) and she told me that she is afraid to wear heels because she is so tall. I encouraged her to showcase her long legs with a pair of heels, but she did not seem convinced.
That's all I have for now. Maybe I will have additional thoughts after I get the cobwebs out of my head.
Friday, September 14, 2007
I am so not ready!
I practiced the walk and I think I have that down pat.
I lost weight, so now I am anorexic thin like your typical catwalk model. Not quite, but I did drop some weight and am thinner than I have been in over a year.
But I have a slight case of stage fright.
The show received publicity in Hartford Courant, so there is likely to be a good turnout of strangers!
In the past, I have lipsynched en femme at my support group's annual banquet, but that was in front of a crowd composed mostly of forgiving friends and acquaintances. Tonight, the crowd will mostly be strangers, the general public. In other words, this will be my first public performance.
I am scaring myself just writing this! So, I will stop now, get through a half-day of work, then go home to get ready for the show.
Wish me luck!
The point of the banner is to encourage more crossdressers to go out en femme and to go out often and, as a result, crossdressing will become more common, more accepted, and other crossdressers will drop their inhibitions and go out en femme, too.
The thing is, I am not satisfied with the wording. I played with a lot of words and phrases trying to come up with something catchy. I came up with something, but I am not too sure it is catchy.
If you have any comments or suggestions about the banner, please leave a comment below or e-mail me.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Are we there yet?
Not completely, but it's getting better all the time.
Over 25 years ago, I encountered my first crossdresser out in public near my home in a western Connecticut suburb. A crossdresser was exiting a grocery store as I was entering.
Some of the customers and workers in the store were all aflutter over the appearance of the crossdresser. Some were amused and some were bemused. I remember one cashier commenting on the crossdresser's big feet in too small a shoe.
Twenty-five years later, I don't believe that a crossdresser appearing in public would have the same effect. A few people might be amused or bemused, but the majority of people would likely just accept the crossdresser's appearance and go on with their day.
In the last 25 years, the media has made crossdressing more familiar to the general public. Sure, the general public thinks that we all are crossdressers like the girls that appear on Jerry Springer, but at least they are familiar with our tribe and are less likely to overreact when they see us.
Also, the younger generations are more accepting of diversity than the older generations. I walk the campuses of colleges when I do outreach and seldom does anyone bat an eye and the students I encounter in the classes where I do outreach are usually sympathetic and very supportive.
So, the more we get out there, the more the general public will get accustomed to seeing us out there. So, get out there!
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Shopping en femme is actually more "exciting" then dining en femme.
When you dine en femme, once you are seated in the restaurant, you blend into the background and are ignored by the other diners most of the time.
When you shop en femme, you are much more visible than when you are seated in a restaurant. You are visible most of the time you are in a store. If you are tall, you are even more visible while you browse in a store. You can't sit down like you can in a restaurant to disguise your height. You are out there for all to see.
If you are shopping in a mall, you are also visible as you move from store to store... even more so than when you are in a store. In a store, only the other shoppers and workers in the store can see you and they may not care or notice because they are concentrating on shopping and working. Whereas in the byways of a mall, you encounter shoppers and non-shoppers like senior citizens and teenagers killing time by people-watching.
Personally, I have found that female senior citizens are more troublesome than teenagers. On more than one occasion, I have encountered female senior citizens that were just plain rude when they figured out I was a male en femme. On the other hand, the teenagers were cooler than their senior counterparts. That is my experience; your mileage may vary.
Below is a list of stores where I have recently shopped en femme without any issues, i.e., the store staff treated me like any other customer and did not seem to mind that I was en femme.
In some cases, the staff made a special effort to treat me nicely. Asterisks (***) follow those stores that made an extra effort.
Ann Taylor Loft, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington
Fashion Bug, Queens Plaza, 861 Queen St., Southington
JCPenney, Westfield Shoppingtown, 470 Lewis Ave, Meriden ***
L'Oreal Paris, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington ***
M·A·C, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington
M·A·C (Macy's), Westfield Shoppingtown, 470 Lewis Av., Meriden
Macy's, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington
Nordstrom, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington
Payless Shoesource, Queens Plaza, 837 Queen St., Southington
Sephora, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington ***
Talbots, 500 Westfarms Mall, Farmington ***
Tonkin's Wigs, 481 Wolcott St., Waterbury ***
Torrid, Westfield Shoppingtown, 470 Lewis Ave, Meriden ***
Monday, September 10, 2007
The problem seems to have gone away and I am starting to receive e-mail again, but I fear that I lost some overnight. So, if you sent anything to me between 10 PM last night and 10 AM this morning, please resend it because I did not receive it.
Sunday, September 9, 2007
I lost 8 pounds in preparation for the show and I will probably lose a few more before Friday. As a result, my face lost its puffiness and the outfits I will be modeling look better on my slightly slimmer bod.
I began the process of hair removal today. Both outfits I will be modeling have revealing necklines, so I shaved my boobs and underarms today. I will revisit them on Friday and also use Nair on my arms and legs to free them of hair.
I hope it is cooler on Friday than it has been the last few days. The forecast calls for highs in the high 70s and lows in the mid 60s, which is an improvement. I hope the forecast turns out to be accurate.
Saturday, September 8, 2007
Friday, September 7, 2007
I am off this afternoon and plan to accessorize the two outfits I will be modeling and make sure that everything is just so.
I will be bringing my camera to the event and hope to convince someone to take a million shots of me strutting down the catwalk. So, I hope I will have some photos to share with you here.
And I hope that some of you will be able to attend to cheer me on and support a worthy cause.
Thursday, September 6, 2007
In all my years dining out en femme, rarely have I had issues with the restaurant staff and only occasionally have I noticed other diners acting in an untoward manner.
Below is a list of restaurants where I have recently dined en femme without any issues, i.e., the restaurant staff treated me like any other customer and did not seem to mind that I was en femme.
In some cases, the restaurant staff made a special effort to treat me like a lady, i.e., they addressed me as "Miss" or "Ma'am." Asterisks (***) follow those restaurants that made an extra effort.
Bertucci's Brick Oven Ristorante, 330 N. Main St., West Hartford
City Steam Brewery Café, 942 Main St., Hartford
Coyote Flaco, 635 New Britain Ave, Hartford ***
Delaney's Grille & Taproom, 864 Whalley Ave, New Haven ***
Elbow Room, 986 Farmington Ave, West Hartford
Gold Roc Diner, 61 Kane St, West Hartford
Pond House Café, 1555 Asylum Ave., West Hartford
Ruby Tuesday, 500 Westfarms Mall Farmington
Simsbury 1820 House, 731 Hopmeadow St, Simsbury
Tuscany Grill, 100 College St, Middletown
Vito's by the Park, 26 Trumbull St., Hartford
Legal Seafoods, 1400 Worcester St, Natick
Uno Chicago Grill, 126 North Main St, Dayton ***
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
- When I was going out en femme only to attend my support group's meetings, the conferences provided me with an opportunity to go out en femme a little further. Having the run of the hotel hosting the conference was liberating; so liberating that I even dared to go out beyond the hotel to shop and dine. Doing so, I discovered that I passed most of the time/I was not read most of the time.
- Being a fashionista, I attend any seminars dealing with makeup, fashion, deportment, speech, i.e., anything that will help improve my passing abilities. I had a Jim Bridges' makeover at my first conference and although the results were over the top, I learned more about makeup application in that 60 minutes than I had in all my years up to that time. After that one makeover, my makeup skills improved by a quantum leap.
- I attend other seminars that promise to be interesting. Some turn out to be duds and some are better than promised. You never know.
- There is usually one dinner per event that allows me to wear something glamorous (an evening gown or cocktail dress) and I love to dress glamorously.
- Hobnobbing with other trans people is a big attraction for me. Making new acquaintances and renewing old acquaintances is always fun and very interesting. Interestingly, I find myself being a lot more outgoing than I usually am in boy mode. This is not always a good thing.
Last time I attended First Event, I arrived late Friday afternoon and wanted to register as soon as I arrived because I thought the registration desk was going to close soon. So I headed straight to the floor where the conference was occurring. I was still dressed in boy mode, while my mind was already in girl mode. A transwoman got on the elevator with me and without thinking, I blurted out, "Are you having a good time?" As soon as I spoke, I realized that I might have freaked her out and sure enough, she seemed uneasy. I felt so bad and I immediately explained to her that I was a crossdresser, too. She still seemed uneasy and I never saw her again!
The morale of that story is that I have to cool it until I put a dress on!
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
Fantasia Fair is expensive. Registration costs $550. Add another $700 (more or less) for a room for seven nights. That adds up to $1250 just for room, board (registration includes some meals), and admission to the event.
I am the sole support of a child in college and a spouse who can not work, so $1250 is too expensive for me. Forget about it!
Word arrived here in the early summer that the folks running Fantasia Fair were offering scholarships for those with financial need. Scholarships would pay for room, board, and admission. I felt I had a financial need, so I applied for a scholarship.
Time passed when the scholarship winners were to be notified. I heard nothing and assumed I had not won. It was a little letdown, but I went on with my life.
Last Monday, I received an e-mail informing me unofficially that I had been selected to receive a scholarship. It was not a full scholarship, but a "working" scholarship, i.e., I would have to spend some time working during the event.
That seemed fair and I was elated with the news. I waited to receive official notification which was supposed to arrive in a few days.
Last Thursday, I received official notification. Yes, I had won a working scholarship. But, instead of free room, board, and admission, the scholarship consisted of a $300 deduction off the registration fee and required that I work at the event. I was on my own regarding a room.
So, instead of $1250 out of pocketbook, it would cost me $950 out of pocketbook and I had to work the event. The official notification was a big letdown.
I mulled it over.
I have no idea what the work will entail. I asked, but so far, I have no answer. I surely do not want to spend the whole week working and have to pay $950 out of pocketbook!
I figured that if I had a roommate, I could cut my room cost in half and it would be $600 out of pocketbook, but that is still a far cry from $0 out of pocketbook.
Thanks for the scholarship, but no thanks. I scratched Fantasia Fair off my calendar.
Monday, September 3, 2007
platinum blonde: 1 vote (2%)
blonde: 19 votes (38%)
strawberry blonde: 3 votes (6%)
red: 10 votes (20%)
brunette: 17 votes (34%)
I am not surprised by blonde's strong showing, but I am surprised by the strong second-place showing of brunette.