Wednesday, April 30, 2008

day out en femme

Yesterday, I spent much of the day out en femme.

Shopping

I femulated and was on the road before 10 AM. Twenty minutes later, I parked my car in front of JCPenney's at the mall in Meriden.

My goal was to find a dress to match the floral high heel pumps I bought at Payless last week. I saw a dress on JCPenney's Web site that would be perfect and I hoped to find it in the store, try it on, and see if it was a keeper.

I sat in the car waiting for the rain to let up (it was pouring) and to build up my courage to go in the store. I was overdressed for shopping on a rainy day (dress, heels, and tights) as evidenced by the other women I saw entering the store. But, I like to be dressed nicely when I do outreach and so it goes.

Sitting in the car, I worry about all the things that can go wrong femulating in public, but as soon as I opened the car door and walked across the parking lot with my high heels clicking that oh so feminine beat, all my fears went away. (This occurs almost every time I step out in public en femme. Maybe I'll stop worrying someday.)

No one paid any attention to me as I crossed the store to the women's dresses. I looked through all the racks, but I could not find the dress that I saw online. I found two other floral dresses in my size that might do and I also found a black pleated bubble skirt. I took two skirts (size 14 and 16) and the floral dresses to the dressing room.

Both floral dresses were the same size, but one was too tight on top and I could not get it on. The other fit fine, but it did not thrill me and its price tag ($70) made it less thrilling.

I tried on the size 14 bubble skirt and it fit fine and it thrilled me! I have been thinking about buying a bubble skirt for awhile now and I loved the way it looked.

I left the floral dresses and larger skirt on the return rack in the dressing room and began looking for a top to go with the skirt. I found a beautiful short-sleeve satiny blouse in a black and white leaf pattern with pretty puff sleeves. I found one in size XL and hoped that it would fit. I also found a black swing jacket. I took my finds to the dressing room.

I put on the bubble skirt and the blouse and I said, "Wow!" The blouse fit perfectly and looked fantastic with the skirt. I wanted to wear the outfit out of the store, but remembered that my upper arms were unshaven. I also tried on the jacket, but it did nothing for me.

I took the skirt and blouse to the cashier and waited in line behind one woman. While I waited, I noticed some of the female staff checking me out. I assumed they were in awe of the Amazonian beauty in their midst.

The cashier was very pleasant and I was pleasantly surprised that the outfit cost only $52. The price tags added up to $80, so I assume there was some kind of sale going on that I was unaware of.

I left the store and walked to my car; it was still raining.

Outreach

Thirty minutes later, I parked my car at Southern Connecticut State University. It was still pouring and I was about 30 minutes early, so I waited for the rain to let up before I walked to the classroom where I was going to do outreach. Fifteen minutes to go and the rain had not let up, so I grabbed my umbrella and walked about 500 yards to the classroom.

The professor found me and I met the other outreachers: Quinton (a female-to-male transsexual, who I've done outreach with before), Michelle (a male-to-female transsexual, who was new to me), and Diana (another male-to-female transsexual, a good friend, and someone I have done outreach with many times). I was the token crossdresser.

Both classes were big, about 25 students each with a 2:1 female-to-male ratio. I noticed some "attitude" among a couple of the males; I assumed that their testosterone levels were higher yesterday because of the weather.

As usual, we each told our stories and then fielded questions from the students. For the Q&A, the professor divided the class in half and we spent half the period with one half of the class and the rest of the period with the other half. I was paired with Diana for the first class and Quinton for the second class.

I started out sounding nervous, but loosened up during the Q&A and even got a few laughs from the students.

The Q&A was typical. We've heard most of the questions before. I did receive one unique question. During the last Q&A of the day, a very pretty student sitting next to me said, "How do you react when guys are attracted to you?"

My answer was simple, i.e., that I never noticed any guys being attracted to me.

The student was incredulous and said, "You make such a pretty woman, so guys must be attracted to you."

I said that she might be right, but I never noticed probably because I did not want to attract guys, so I paid little attention to them.

During the break between classes, we all went to the student union to eat and chat. We also had an opportunity to read the first class' reactions to us.

A few students said that I was nervous, but at least, no one said I was "sad" as in the past.

One male student wrote, "Staci is so cool that I could tell she is probably a very nice person in boy mode, and in front of me is a woman."

That is perhaps the nicest compliment I have ever received.

Monday, April 28, 2008

going mainstream


Is femulation going mainstream?

Sunday's Parade Magazine had this femulation-related cartoon. The print edition of the magazine also had a photo of actor Patrick Dempsey wearing a skirt, but that photo did not make it into the online edition.

an extended weekend

I am enjoying an extended weekend.

We visited northern Vermont and New Hampshire Saturday and Sunday where snow is still on the ground in many places. I took Monday off to recuperate from Saturday and Sunday and I am taking Tuesday off to spend the day femulating to do outreach for two classes at Southern Connecticut State University.

The weather forecast is rain, rain, and more rain, but as I always say, "A bad day femulating beats a good day at work!"

Friday, April 25, 2008

Paltrow receives Femulate Fashion Seal of Approval


Earlier today, I bestowed my coveted Femulate Fashion Seal of Approval on Gwyneth Paltrow, who has donned mini-skirts and kinky heels on "Iron Man" Tour.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Radicalguy

Recently, Ethan St. Pierre interviewed my friend Jamie Dailey on his TransFM Internet "radio" program. As you may recall, Jamie is the femulator I outreached with last week.

I missed the live Internet broadcast, but I downloaded its podcast to my iPod and listened to the interview during my daily commute.

The interview was wonderful. It was my first encounter with Ethan St. Pierre, "The Radicalguy," and I was very impressed. He is a superb interviewer with a great sense of humor. He seemed very familiar with Jamie and their interview was more like a conversation between old friends.

I wanted to hear more, so I commanded iTunes on my MacBook Pro to download a directory of all the Radicalguy interviews that were available. I selected a couple of interviews from the directory (the Jennifer Finney Boylan interview and the Helen Boyd and Betty Crow interview) to download to my iPod and I have been listening to those podcasts the past few days.

I have not been disappointed. Those interviews are as good as Jamie's interview and I will likely download all of Ethan's podcasts to my iPod.

By the way, Ethan is a female-to-male trans and his spouse if male-to-female, so he is very familiar with our area of endeavor. Visit his Web site for more information.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

shopping

During lunch, I drove to the grocery store to buy food for lunch and stopped at PayLess, which is on the way. I bought two pairs of shoes: black oxfords for boy mode and flower pumps for girl mode. The pumps are the shoes I blogged about last week ("my Mother's pumps") and I was pleased that they had a pair in my size.

I wonder what went through the cashier's mind while she rang up my diverse gendered purchase, which, by the way, was a real good deal. Payless is having their "buy one and get the second half-off" sale, so my purchase cost only $35.

Now, I have to find something to wear to go with my new shoes!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

towering Tyra

During dinner, the television is usually on and tuned to the local news. During commercials, I usually switch to the channel that broadcasts the Tyra Banks show in the 5-6 PM time slot.

I check out her show because sometimes the topic of the show is related to my fashionista side and sometimes to my trans side. I also check out her show to check out Tyra to see what wig and outfit she is wearing. She always looks gorgeous and is an inspiration to this little old femulator. (Here is a link to see what Tyra and some of her guests have worn on past shows.)

She is also tall. On yesterday's show, she towered over everyone, male and female. The high heels she wore had something to do with her towering height, but I was curious as to how tall she really is.

So, after dinner, I searched the Internet and found that she is 5'10" or 5'11" depending on who you believe. Either way, she is tall.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

a pageant for the third sex

"A pageant for the third sex" describes a recent beauty pageant for our trans-sisters in India. Read the whole story here.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

my Mother's pumps

Today, I received an e-mail from Payless announcing a shoe sale. I checked out the sale because I like their shoes (they are inexpensive and there usually is a nice selection in my size).

While browsing their shoes, I had déjà vu when I saw this high heel pump that they call "Hilt." It is a dead ringer for the first woman's shoe I ever wore.

When I was about 12 years old, my experiments with femulation began one day when an inner voice convinced me to try on a pair of my mother's stockings while I was home alone.

I had seen my mother put on her stockings more than once, so I had a pretty good idea on how to do it and I emulated her successfully, i.e., I got them on without running them.

I then checked out my pre-pubescent hairless stockinged legs in my mother's full length mirror. Wow – they were as shapely as the legs of a woman!

My inner voice convinced me that they might look even more shapely if I slipped on a pair of my mother's high heels. So, I found a pair of her high heel pumps, ones that look just like Payless's Hilts, and slipped them on my feet.

I checked out my legs in the mirror again and again was impressed how shapely and womanly my legs appeared.

That was the beginning. The rest was her-story, specifically Staci's story.

Whenever I dressed secretly at home, I always favored that pair of my mother's pumps. They were so pretty and they were also the highest high heels she owned.

Her pumps are long gone, but I plan to go shopping at Payless real soon now and buy a pair of my own.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

my day at Wesleyan University

Tuesday, I went to Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, to do outreach for a class on 21st Century sexuality.

For the first time, I wore the "royal purple" zip-front V-neck dress that I bought from Newport-News in December. It is from their Shape FX collection, which they claim are "designed to make the body you have, look like the body you want."

I'm not sure how they do it, but every Shape FX outfit I own improves my figure and the dress I wore yesterday was no exception. In my notes from yesterday, I wrote that I thought I looked "fab."

By the time I was ready to go out, it was 10:45 AM. Since I was not sure how long it would take to drive to Wesleyan and find a parking space, instead of shopping before going to the school, I drove directly to Wesleyan and found a parking spot across the street from the classroom building where I was doing outreach.

I was 90 minutes early! I sat in the car for awhile taking in the beautiful scenery, then decided to get out in the fresh air. I walked to the entrance of the classroom building where there were benches and I sat there until the class began.

I did not take a coat of jacket with me and I thought that might be a mistake because the temperature was in the low 30s early on, but by the time I arrived on campus, the temperature was about 60 and perfect for what I was wearing.

The classroom building has a cornerstone dated 1903. I wonder how many crossdressers were doing outreach at Wesleyan 105 years ago!

Thinking about my own life, when I stepped out en femme for the first time to attend my first support group meeting, I would never have imagined that 20 years later, I would be out and about freely femulating in public and speaking about it to a college class. (You've come a long way, baby!)

And, although I am 20 years older, my presentation as a woman is much better today. I mastered a lot of the "tricks of the trade" and I think I pass some of the time. My penchant for high heels does not help me pass, but like I've said before, at 6'2", my height is already a show-stopper, so what difference will high heels make.

Jamie, the other crossdresser who was doing outreach with me, showed up and a few minutes later, Maureen Sullivan, the professor showed up and escorted us to the classroom.

It was a small class: about 15 students, about half female and half male. I went first and talked for about 15 minutes, basically reciting my biography. Jamie spoke after me and covered more generic trans subject matter. Then, we took questions from the students.

We did not get a lot of questions and the only unique question I received had nothing to do with trans matters; the student asked me about the books I had written in boy mode.

After class, we three walked three blocks to Main Street to dine at the First and Last Tavern. I'm glad I brought a second pair of shoes, otherwise the walk might have been unbearable in the 3½” platform pumps I was wearing. Switching to a 3” non-platform pump made a big difference.

I don't think anyone paid much attention to us until we got to the restaurant, where I noticed some of the staff checking us out more closely. Our waiter was respectful and treated us like ladies.

The food was good and the conversation was excellent. We dined alfresco, which was very nice for a change.

We finished around 4 PM, walked back to the campus, split up, and drove home.

It was another excellent day out en femme, but I was exhausted by the time I arrived home and went to bed earlier than usual.

Monday, April 14, 2008

fallen limbs = shapely limbs

Muscles ache today that normally don't because I did the dreaded spring yard clean-up Saturday and Sunday.

This year, it was particularly onerous because during the winter, a huge branch broke from a tree and landed in the back yard. Normally, I would just drag it into the woods, but this one was so big that I could barely move it. So, I had to get out the chain saw and cut it down to more manageable pieces that I could drag into the woods along with the 50 or so other branches that were kind enough to break off in manageable chunks.

When I got on the scale this morning, I was happy to see that I weighed one pound less than the day I got married 25 years ago. Except for raking leaves in the fall, I do all my own yard work and it helps me to maintain my figure. All those fallen limbs make for shapely limbs!

Friday, April 11, 2008

males modeling dresses

I was looking at the spring fashions on the Internet today and I noticed what I believe were males modeling dresses. Here are two examples; you be the judge.

reaching further

This is going to be a busy month for me on the outreach front.

Last night, I received a call asking if I would do outreach for two Human Sexuality classes at Southern Connecticut State University on April 29. These are the classes I have been outreaching every semester for the past few years and I gladly accepted the assignment.

This is in addition to the outreach I will be doing at Wesleyan University on Tuesday, so, as a result, I will be out for the day en femme twice this month.

Fantastic!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

just my style

I try not to watch too much television because I get hooked on the better stuff (like The Sopranos, John Adams, 30 Rock) and when I get hooked, I can't miss an episode.

I saw the ads for AMC's Mad Men, but avoided it because it seemed like just another prime time soap.

The show received good reviews and I will probably check it out in reruns, but not because of the good reviews, but rather because of the costume design.

"Set in 1960 New York, the daring new series is about the lives of the ruthlessly competitive men and women of Madison Avenue advertising, an ego-driven world where key players make an art of the sell while their private world gets sold."

Yeah, it sounds like a soap, but the clothing is just my style!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

best deal in bras

Twenty-two percent of women in a new Consumer Reports survey said they always or often regret bra purchases. That's especially annoying when some bras cost more than $100. But does a woman or a crossdresser need to pay that much for a well-made bra that fits?

The answer is a resounding "no" and the details are here.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

never worn out

This photo shows me in the spring of 1995 modeling a cocktail dress that I never wore in public. I love the dress and I think it looked lovely on me, but for one reason or another, I never wore it out en femme.

I still have the dress and it is in pristine condition. I believe it is still stylish enough to wear today, don't you?

So, I think it is time to take it out of storage and wear it to the next special occasion I attend. (It would be the perfect thing to wear to my cousin's wedding in June, but I don't think the family would agree with my wardrobe selection.)

next outing/outreach

The plans are set and I will be out en femme next Tuesday, which will include doing outreach at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT. Specifically, I will be doing outreach with another crossdresser for a class dealing with 21st Century sexuality; sounds interesting!

The class is in the early afternoon, so I will have time to do other things. I will probably do some shopping at the mall and have lunch somewhere... maybe on campus.

It should be a nice day out femulating and I am looking forward to it.

Monday, April 7, 2008

kindred spirit

Surfing the net today, I came across the blog of a kindred spirit, Vickie Davis, who you might enjoy reading.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

not sisters

Everyone thinks we're sisters, but we're actually mother and son.

(from a recent issue of The New Yorker)

Saturday, April 5, 2008

just reward

I finished doing my taxes today. I don't usually wait this late, but I use tax software and my computer was in the shop during most of March in the repair queue waiting for a part.

It was worth the wait because after waiting so long, Apple decided to send me a new computer rather than make me wait any longer for mine to be fixed. This was a real sweet deal because my broken computer was over three years old, while its replacement is a brand new model, just released in January!

Anyway, I finished my taxes and I am getting the biggest refund I have ever received. And as a reward, I treated myself and bought this dress from Metrostyle 30% off list.

Friday, April 4, 2008

calendar


2008 March 29
Originally uploaded by staci-staci
I promise that this will be the last photo from the banquet that I will put on the blog. It is another from my friend Jamie.

The banquet is nearly a week past now and I still cannot get the thrill of temporarily being a woman out of my mind. So much so that I have been hatching plans for a day out
en femme real soon now. Maybe a day at the casino, where I can play slots for an hour or two, eat lunch at a nice restaurant, and do some window shopping in the expensive stores that ring the casino (if I win at the slots, maybe I will even buy something).

I also began thinking seriously about attending the Be-All in Chicago at the end of May, which would include a 900-mile road trip
en femme (never pumped gas en femme before).

And out of the blue, I received an e-mail yesterday asking if I'd be interested in doing outreach at a new venue: Wesleyan University. A professor is looking for a plain vanilla heterosexual crossdresser to speak at her class later this month, so I provided the dates I can appear.

It looks like my
en femme calendar is filling up nicely.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

more banquet photos


2008 March 29
Originally uploaded by staci-staci
This is one of the photos my friend Jamie sent me from my support group's banquet on Saturday night.

It seems that most of the attendees had digital cameras and they were using them; it was "The Night of a Thousand Flashes."

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

party likes it's 1997

My friend Michelle sent me a photo from 1997 attending my first Connecticut Outreach Society (COS) banquet. (I believe it was also the first COS banquet ever held).



We were crowded in a very small hotel banquet room and there was an assigned restroom nearby that we were supposed to use. Rebel rebel that I am, when nature called, I took the elevator down to the ground floor and used a real women's restroom and I remember being thrilled that the female patrons in the ladies' inner sanctum paid no attention to me!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

voice training

Laura Kane sent me this link to an amazing YouTube video in which a young transwoman demonstrates how she attains a realistic female voice. Her technique is similar to the technique I have tried, but her results are a lot better than mine!

Even if you have no interest in using a female voice, watch the video for its entertainment value because you will be surprised (at least I was) when she switches to her male voice.