Tuesday, September 30, 2008

call to P-Town

I phoned the hotel I will be staying at during Fantasia Fair to check on a few things.

Among other things, I wanted to find out if they have Internet access (so I can blog from the Fair). Turns out that they have free wifi.

I also wanted to find out about parking because their Web site says they do not provide overnight parking. Turns out that after Labor Day, parking is not an issue and that they do provide overnight parking.

Talking to the fellow at the front desk, I was impressed how friendly and welcoming he seemed. He actually sounded interested in the questions from this Fantasia Fair first-timer.

This was in high contrast to some of the hotel staff I have encountered at other trans events in the past* and he really made me feel comfortable about the prospect of staying at his establishment.

* One of the worst cases occurred when I was checking in at a hotel hosting a trans event about ten years ago. I was dressed en femme, yet the female at the front desk addressed me as "sir." It was not an auspicious start to that long weekend en femme.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

three weeks until Fantasia Fair

Three weeks from now, I should be checked in at my hotel, dressed and ready to attend the first event, the welcome reception, of my 24/7 week en femme at Fantasia Fair.

I am so looking forward to Fantasia Fair! And I know it will be over before I know it.

By the way, I plan to keep a diary of my Fantasia Fair experience here on this blog with photos.

Friday, September 26, 2008

the seamy side of crossdressing

I have to get something off my chest.

A male gets dressed as a female on a television show or in a film. When he is finished, someone comments that his seams are not straight. In response, our hero checks out his gams, notices the unseemly seam and proceeds to adjust his hosiery to fix his fashion faux pas.

I think the first time I saw that scene was on the television show That Girl. On that show, Marlo Thomas's hapless boyfriend, played by Ted Bessell, had to dress as a woman for some reason and Marlo's father, played by Lew Parker, noted Ted's crooked seam(s).

Since that time, I've seen this scene repeated numerous times and each time I see it, it bothers me.


Because there are NO SEAMS!!!!!

I admit that you can still find, buy, and wear seamed hosiery (I know it, I've done it), but in every instance in a film or television show where the seam scene plays out, the crossdresser is not wearing seamed hosiery.

After I saw this scene a few times, I thought I was missing something and started looking for seams in my seamless hosiery! When I could not find any seams, I realized that the seam joke was just a carryover from the days when women and crossdressers wore seamed hosiery; I assume the writer(s) think that the joke is so funny that they continue to use the crooked seam joke despite the lack thereof.

Seamless hosiery began replacing seamed hosiery about the same time I started crossdressing. I distinctly remember that the first few pairs of stockings that I borrowed from my mother had seams, then suddenly, she started buying seamless stockings, and not much later than that, she switched to pantyhose that were also seamless.

By the way, this tirade was set off by a photo on flickr that I viewed earlier today in which a crossdresser is straightening his seams (according to the photo caption), yet he is wearing seamless hosiery.

I'm glad I finally got that off my chest. Now I feel better!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

a boy wearing makeup

(I guess this is old news, but it is new news to me and maybe to you, too, so here it is.)

Mathieu Francis is the boy wearing makeup in A Boy Wearing Makeup, which is a series of videos that describe basic makeup application, as well as how to achieve certain looks and apply makeup like the stars (Mischa Barton, Jennifer Anniston, Sophia Bush).

According to the Web site, "If he looks this pretty, imagine what he can do for you! Check out these tutorials geared towards people of any age, any race, and any sex. The boy is here to provide you comic relief, fun make-up application, and to help you realized the potential in all of us to do and become everything we've always dreamed."

I have not viewed all the videos, but the videos I have viewed are very good and I recommend them to you.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

tall pair

Greg nominated two additions to the Famous Females of Height list:

Pauley Perrette (left), the 5'10" actress currently appearing on the CBS television series Navy CSI NCIS.

Christina Hendricks (right), the 5'8" actress currently appearing on the cable television series Mad Men

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fantasia Fair update

An e-mail arrived informing me that I will be staying at the Crown & Anchor Inn in Provincetown during Fantasia Fair. Crown & Anchor is Fantasia Fair headquarters, i.e., where the action is during the event, so I feel lucky to be staying there.

Monday, September 22, 2008

my Emmy award

I watched the Emmy awards on television last night.

The hosts were annoying and Jimmy Kimmel was not funny, but there were many beautiful women wearing beautiful gowns that this femulating fashionista found fascinating.

My award for the best gown of the evening goes to January Jones, who wore a Dolce & Gabbana white corset-style goddess gown. (Ms. Jones appears on the basic cable series Mad Men.)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Rebecca Hall's tall

I saw the latest Woody Allen flick tonight, Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Vicky in the title was played by Rebecca Hall, who was excellent in the role.

Ms. Hall is also tall as was evident throughout the film, so I looked her up and she is 5'9" and thus qualifies as the latest addition to the Famous Females of Heights list.

Transgender Woman Wins Discrimination Lawsuit

According to today's Washington Post, a federal judge ruled yesterday that a former special forces commander was discriminated against when officials at the Library of Congress revoked a job offer after learning she was transitioning from being a man to a woman.

Read all about it here.

Staci says...

This case may be a breakthrough for the transgender community because the decision was based on the court's interpretation of the Civil Rights Act's prohibition against sex discrimination, not based on a law prohibiting gender discrimination.

This is important because the Civil Right's Act is federal law that is in place, whereas there is no federal protection against gender discrimination. Based on yesterday's decision, trans folk may be able to use the Civil Rights Act as a tool to protect their rights instead of waiting for a gender law to become reality.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

being scarce

I will be scarce for the next five days. I am going away on vacation with limited Internet access, so blog postings will be few and far between until I get back.

wear-a-dress day

Shoot! I missed it!

Why wasn't I informed?

This past Monday was International Wear-A-Dress Day 2008 and I didn't know anything about it.

Wait 'til next year.

lipstick on a pit bull drag

Here's the lowdown on doing Sarah Palin drag for Halloween.

To tell you the truth, I'm more interested in a Michelle Obama wig, than a Sarah Palin wig, but that's me.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I'm not used to wearing heels

The most recent addition to our Famous Females of Height list, 5'11" Dara Torres modeled two looks for the presentation of Charles Nolan's spring collection during New York's Spring Fashion Week.

"Torres said she did worry... that she might stumble on the runway like Carrie Bradshaw did in 'Sex and the City.'"

"I'm not used to wearing heels," she explained. "I wear flats and flip-flops all the time."

Read all about it here.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

where's Billy?

After I wrote the previous blog entry, "fiddling around," I searched the Internet to find an appropriate image to complement what I wrote and I came up with a photo of a beautiful woman playing a violin.

The woman in the photo reminded me of someone from my youth, my best friend in grammar school, Billy. I think Billy resembles the woman in the photo and vice versa.

I have not seen Billy in over 40 years, so I have no idea what he looks like today, but take the Billy I knew in the early 1960s, put him in drag, and he would be a dead ringer for the woman playing the violin.

I never saw Billy in drag, but I know he dressed as a girl for Halloween at least once and I suspect he is trans.

Billy and I were best friends throughout grammar school. I can't remember how we became friends, but we had a lot in common and that is what probably drew us together. We were both Polish, which was a rare commodity in our neighborhood, we both went to the same church (a Polish parish, needless to say), we were both artists, which put us on the outs with the school's "in crowd," and we both were fascinated in the opposite sex. We had crushes on certain girls, but we both were also scared of them and never did anything about our crushes, at least not in grammar school.

Around puberty, maybe in the 7th or 8th grade, I remember Billy hinting that we dress as girls for Halloween. At that time, I knew something was up with me gender-wise, but I didn't know what and the idea of dressing as a girl for Halloween was very attractive, but I was also in public denial about my gender issues and told Billy that I had no interest in his Halloween costume plans.

I don't remember what I wore for a costume that Halloween, but I do recall that I went out with my usual Halloween trick and treat partner in crime, my other best friend, who lived across the street.

In school the next day, Billy mentioned that he did dress as a girl, he trick and treated at my house and was disappointed that I was not home to see him in his costume. Note that Billy never before trick and treated my house, so he made a special effort that night to show me his girl costume.

Around this same time, I remember that one of us decided that we should adopt girl names (why - I don't know) and for days, he addressed me by my girl name, which was "Susan" and I addressed him by his girl name, which I cannot recall now.

As I mentioned above, we were both artists. He was very good at painting and I was a very good at sketching. As an outlet for my budding trans psyche, I spent a lot of my free time back then sketching males wearing female clothing. I must have killed a forest doing it. One day, Billy mentioned that he had been doing something similar and another day, he showed me some of his sketches. My reaction was to show disinterest.

But my real reaction was fear. I was in uncharted waters; I did not know what was going on with him (or me). I had enough trouble sorting out what was going on with me without having to deal with what was going on with my best friend, so I basically ignored him and I think that was the begiining of the end of a beautiful friendship. We hung out less during our last days in grammar school and ended up going to different high schools and after a few years, we were both out of each others' lives.

I think Billy was reaching out to me. He probably was just as confused as I was and maybe he thought he and his best friend would be better able to work things out as a team rather than solo. If that was the case, he was probably correct and I very much regret not reaching out to him and trying to work out together what the heck was going on. And so it goes.

Over the years, I learned through a mutual friend that Billy got married and lives two towns away, but our mutual friend said nothing about anything trans and I certainly did not ask.

But I often think about Billy and wonder if he really was trans (or was it just my 'magination) and if he ever did anything about it. I often hoped that one day he would show up at my support group and we could become best friends again except that this time we would be girlfriends.

fiddling around

Rome is burning while I fiddle around thinking about such things as what shoes to buy to go with my new evening gown.

If I put the time and effort that I spend femulating into something more important, would I make a difference? Maybe the world would be just a little bit better.

Maybe, maybe not.

Then again, maybe my efforts in femulation are doing some good. Personally, I know I get a lot out of it. And I know that writing this blog has helped a few people according to the feedback I have received.

But I am a worrier - always have been, always will be.

One of my biggest worries is what will other people think about me. If anything has been my downfall, it has been trying to please other people. I often succeed in making other people happy, but my success seldom makes me happy.

If I chose to please myself rather than please others throughout my life, I know my life would be different. Chances are I would have gone to NYC and tried to become a female impersonator instead of continuing my higher education to please my family.

What a sad sack I am! Maybe I need a vacation!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Supremes and their fab gowns

Today's "Femulate This: Vintage Vriday" posting depicts Mary Wilson of The Supremes circa 1965.

I was a 1960s rock 'n' roller and The Supremes was one of my favorite groups from that era. In my opinion, their sound epitomized Motown in the 1960s. I bought most of their 45s and some of their LPs during the singing group's heyday.

In addition to their music, I loved their style. The gowns they wore on their television appearances were fab and I dreamed about starting my own singing group just so I could dress like them.

One thing holding me back was my singing voice or lack thereof. My singing voice has not prevented me from buying and wearing fabulous evening gowns. Occasionally, I even lip-sync while wearing one.

If I can get my act together in time, I hope to lip-sync at the Fantasia Fair Follies this year.

And speaking of gowns and Fantasia Fair, I finally found a gown to wear to the Fantasia Fair banquet (see photo to the right).

I searched and searched trying to find one similar to the gown that I wanted, but was not available in my size. The gown I found is very similar, costs less and they have it in my size! I plan to order it today.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

like mother, like father

back to square one (evening gown saga, part 6)

Last time I wrote about this, I had e-mailed the seller to see if they had the evening gown I wanted one size smaller or one size larger than the size I ordered, which they did not have in stock.

The seller e-mailed me yesterday that the largest size they had in stock was two sizes smaller than the size I ordered.

No thanks. There is no way I can squeeze into something two sizes smaller. So, I asked for a refund and renewed my search for an evening gown.

What Has Sex Got to Do With It, Ex-Man Asks Court

This is an excellent commentary by Ann Woolner. I highly recommend reading it.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

choking on my granola

(updated below)

Nothing like turning the page of the local newspaper first thing in the morning to find a huge full-color photo of a T-girl on the entertainment page. I almost choked on my granola!

Let me explain.

The political philosophy of the local newspaper is diametrically opposed to my own political philosophy. The newspaper is on the right side of the political spectrum, I am on the left. The newspaper's idea of diversity is to hire a white male that wears bow-ties.

The only reason I subscribe to the rag is because it is my hometown newspaper. In addition to informing me about what is going on in town, it also informs me about who has died. I am at an age where old friends are dying off and obituaries in the local rag are the only way I know about their deaths.

Anyway, I turn to the entertainment page this morning and there is a huge photo of trans actress Candis Cayne. The caption says something about Candis getting ready for the second season of her television series. There was no mention of her trans-ness.

Despite the "family values" purported by the editors of the local rag, they always are willing to show a little T & A on the entertainment page. I assume that they assumed the photo of Ms. Cayne was just another photo of a scantily provocatively clad actress that they could use to titillate their readers.

And my guess is if the editors knew a little bit more about Ms. Cayne's background, they would not have featured her photo today.

I think it is time to write a letter to the editor praising the paper for their display of diversity this morning.

UPDATE: I grabbed the photo of Ms. Cayne from the online edition of the newspaper and it appears above right replacing the photo of Ms. Cayne appearing on her television show, "Dirty Sexy Money," that I posted here originally.

"Fashion Rocks" host in drag

Around 10 PM last night, I remembered that "Fashion Rocks" was on CBS.

I don't mind watching beautiful models strutting their stuff amidst rock music. I can handle that. So, I switched channels to the local CBS affiliate and there was the host of the show, Denis Leary, in drag.

"Good timing," I thought.

Denis was wearing an evening gown, long blingy earrings, and carrying a matching purse and high heel pumps (his feet were too big for the pumps).

The joke was that the host kept whatever clothing he wore during the broadcast and this outfit was something his wife wanted.

Not much of a joke, but in the spirit of keeping you informed about all femulations I encounter, I have to report it here.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

a trans victory in Maryland

Great news... Maryland's highest court today blocked a Montgomery County referendum aimed at repealing a new law that protects transgender people from discrimination.

Read all about it here.

High Heel Horrors

After reading this article about the health issues associated with wearing high heels regularly, I guess I found something positive about my inability to be en femme 24/7.

As long as I don't fall flat on my face from wearing high heels, the few hours once or twice a month that I wear heels is not likely to cause any long term harm.

On the other hand, if I was en femme 24/7, I probably would not wear heels all the time just like naturally-born women who are en femme 24/7.

Monday, September 8, 2008

5-Inch Heels: A Users Guide

Kira Craft wrote a user's guide and commentary on very high heels:

"Nice girls don't wear five-inch heels. Or at least- they didn't. Lately, the same skyscraper shoes you would find in the red light district have been given a spit and polish by the fashion cognoscenti."

Read the rest of the story here.

I never wore five-inch heels, but I came pretty close: a pair of black patent platform pumps with a 4¾-inch heel. I bought them a year ago and wore them once.

I've walked in many high heels before, typically in the 3½ to 4-inch heel range. The height of the heel has never affected my ability to walk. Pain in my toes or balls of my feet are usually the source of discomfort, if any.

My platform pumps were a different matter. Their 4¾-inch heel was not an issue, but their ⅞-inch platform took some getting used to.

I immediately noticed something different as I stood up after strapping on the platform pumps for the first time. While my heels were in contact the ground, the front of my feet were sitting on a platform ⅞-inch above the ground. This incongruity was apparent while walking, too.

I acclimated to walking in the platforms heels quickly, but they just did not feel as "natural" as walking in non-platform heels.

As I wrote, I only wore them once: when I modeled for a trans organization fund raiser last September. I wrote then, "The shoes I wore were surprisingly comfortable despite their 4¾-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 have not worn them since the fashion show because I think they would attract too much attention. Attracting attention modeling in a fashion show is a goal, attracting attention shopping in the mall is not, so I have put my platforms away until the next fashion show, assuming platforms are still in fashion when that opportunity arises.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

crossdressed in the past

Another photo from the Eldorado in Berlin during the Weimar Era in pre-Nazi Germany. This one depicts four boys femulating girls.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

crossdressed in the past

A group of girls and femulating boys having a good time at the Eldorado in Berlin during the Weimar Era in pre-Nazi Germany

nighty night, part 2

Good news is that the cami and tap sleep set that I ordered from Avon fit like a dream and I look forward to wearing them while I dream at Fantasia Fair.

evening gown, part 5

My evening gown saga continues.

I ordered the evening gown yesterday afternoon. Late afternoon, I received an e-mail telling me they were out of stock in my size.

What a disappointment!

I wrote back asking if they had the gown one size smaller, but I have not heard back from them yet. (Keep your fingers crossed for me.)

Friday, September 5, 2008


Transsexual Files Complaint

September 5, 2008

WINDSOR LOCKS — - A transgender woman who says a local bar refused to allow her to sing on a karaoke night has filed a complaint with the state Liquor Commission.

Michelle Merrill says a manager at the Skyline Restaurant would not let her sing on Aug. 22 because she is a transsexual. The 35-year-old Enfield resident was born a male and began sex-change procedures 10 years ago.

Merrill says the manager told her other patrons complained that she used the women's bathroom and he didn't want people like her in the bar.

You can read the rest of the story here.

Crap like this happens all the time and articles about this kind of crap appears in the newspapers throughout the world regularly. This story is a little more personal because it is closer to home... about 45 minutes up the road at a restaurant right across the street from where I park my car when I travel by air from Bradley International Airport (BDL).

This isn't some hole-in-the-wall biker bar on some back road in Podunk. No, this is a restaurant in the heart of the BDL complex, a locale where you would think people would be more open-minded considering the diversity of people moving in and out of BDL 24/7.

I think this is all a result of the trickle-down philosophy of our current regime, which says that it is OK to crap on the poor, the non-white, the non-Christian, and/or the non-heterosexual in this country.

This country needs a change and I don't mean a name change ("McCain" for "Bush"). I pray to my Goddesss every night that a real change is going to take place real soon now and that the man from Illinois is going to lead us out of the valley of despair.

Goddess Bless America!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

evening gown, part 4

The seller of the evening gown I was interested in buying to wear to the Fantasia Fair banquet finally responded to my e-mail. I was unsure if the gown would be long enough for someone my height (6' 2"), so I asked for its length.

The response was 52 inches from under the arm to the floor, which should be adequate. So, I will order the gown in a day or two.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

finding my voice

I am easily distracted by thoughts of Fantasia Fair and the opportunity of being en femme 24/7 for seven days and nights.

The longest I have been en femme without a break was during the IFGE Convention in 2004. I arrived at the convention hotel late Wednesday afternoon, dressed female to attend a welcome cocktail party, and remained in female garb until the end of the banquet on Saturday night. So, the extent of my longest stretch en femme was about 3¼ days or 24/3.25. At Fantasia Fair, I will be en femme twice as long.

Back in 2004, I was not out and about. Support group meetings and organized support group outings were the extent of my en femme outings and I recall that during the first days of the convention, I refused to leave my hotel room unless accompanied by my roommate despite the fact that the whole hotel was full of trans-brothers and sisters.

As the convention progressed, I gained confidence and began moving throughout the hotel without requiring my roommate at my side. I had so much confidence that I even ventured outside the hotel to experience being en femme in the fresh air and I began speaking to "civilians" and not limiting my conversation to the other convention attendees.

By the convention's end, I felt that I had made a lot of progress. Today, I realize that the only progress I made during that long weekend was feeling comfortable and confident inside a very large closet.

Since then, I have made much more progress. I go out in public en femme and feel comfortable and confident during my outings most of the time. My "closet" now encompasses the world. Maybe not the whole world, but I consider that part of the world where I venture in boy mode as a safe place for me in girl mode, too.

So, going to Fantasia Fair, I am very comfy about being out and don't expect much personal growth in that area. However, one of my goals for personal growth is to find my female voice and I think that Fantasia Fair will offer an opportunity to achieve this goal by means of Lezli Whitehouse's workshop, "Introduction to Voice Transitional or Shifting Safely."

Here is the workshop description from the Fantasia Fair Web site:

"Add to your flexibility and vocal resilience as you would add to your wardrobe. Voices are very flexible, yet need to be understood in order to not cause damage. They need to be exercised shaped and monitored in order to create a shift, safely. This should be done with little stress and careful attention in order to create lasting habits that will take you where you want to go. This can happen with time, focus and some simple techniques to allow your inner voice to become more public and more confident. Your voice is what sets the tone for "who you are presenting" to the world. Even if you don't want to shift for a life time transition, why not put on the voice to match the rhinestone earrings, not the cowboy voice? Come explore your vocal possibilities. Lezli will guide and lead you through an exploration of the resonance, variety, musicality and soft-strength that is your Voice. As an extension of her workshops, Lezli is offering two additional mornings of Guided Warm-Ups, for those who want to maintain or nurture a feminine voice shift for the day or the week."

Sounds perfect! And I hope I will perfect a lady's voice by the week's end.

tall drink of water

Greg informed me that Olympic champion swimmer Dara Torres is 5' 11½" tall, so I have just added her to my ever-growing Famous Females of Height list.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Judge by Job Performance, Not Gender Identity

Majority of Americans Agree That Transgender Employees Should Be Judged by Job Performance, Not Gender Identity

According to a recent national survey, seven out of ten heterosexual adults (71%) agree that how an employee performs at their job should be the standard for judging an employee, not whether or not they are transgender.

Read all about it here.

nighty night

I am an Avon lady, i.e., I sell Avon products.

Last night, it was time to turn in my biweekly Avon order and as usual, before I do, I browse the catalogs and brochures to see if there is anything I need.

During my browse last night, I noticed the sleepwear on sale and I realized I have nothing to wear when I go to bed during the week I will be attending Fantasia Fair where I will be en femme 24/7. I could wear a pair of my boy mode pajamas, but that would ruin the mood of being female 24/7, so instead of pajamas, I will be wearing the lovely pleated cami and tap sleep set pictured here.