Wednesday, April 29, 2009

hormones and me

"Are you on hormones or have you ever been on hormones?"

People ask me that question often. In fact, just yesterday, someone asked me that question.

My answer is "No." During my 58 years on the third rock from the Sun, I have never taken hormones.

However, I do take care of myself.

I never smoked.

I never did drugs.

I seldom consume alcoholic beverages and when I do, I never have more than one or two drinks.

I watch my weight. I have been within 5 pounds of the same weight for most of the past 35 years.

I have not had any illnesses or diseases worse than the flu or the common cold.

I walk one to two miles a day weather-permitting.

About five years ago, I began taking better care of my skin. I moisturize my face every day and I use the latest Avon product to make my eyes look better/younger/less wrinkled.

I am very adept at applying makeup. I have been practicing for nearly 45 years, so I should be getting the hang of it by now!

All that, but no hormones!

switching teams

In general, I find that women are very accepting and even encouraging when I attempt to emulate a woman. Occasionally, I will encounter a woman who is disgusted by femulation, but most women in the circles I run around in are very accepting.

(Either that or I pass so well that they take me for a real woman, which may be true in a very small minority of cases.)

Anyway, why do women readily accept and even encourage men who femulate?

I have a theory. Most women have a secret: they believe that the female gender is the superior gender. Some women may vocalize that belief, but most do not and let men go on thinking that males are superior.

When a man emulates a woman, women respect a man who has seen the light and wants to switch teams. He may not realize that he is joining the better team, but women appreciate his intentions and some are willing to help him become the best woman he can be.

That is just my theory, but I think it might explain a thing or two.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

When a staffer switches genders

Here is a nice article about my friend Tony and gender-switching on the job, in general.

Carla Bruni-Sarkozy

Yes, you are!

As a former fashion model, it is no surprise that the First Lady of France, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, qualifies for our tall lady's list. She is 5'9" tall.

no kidding: update

Yesterday, I may have pulled the trigger too soon when I deleted all images that depicted children.

It was a classic "manic Monday;" I was busy as a one-armed hairdresser, did not have time to research the matter, and took the safe way out by pulling the plug as fast as possible on those images to avoid being accused of disseminating "k1dd1e p0rn."

Tuesday is vacation-like compared to Monday and I had some time to do some research this morning. I found the applicable federal law, US Code Title 18, §2256, which defines "ch1ld p0rn0graphy." See it for yourself here, specifically paragraph (8).

I am not a lawyer, although I did portray one in law school, so my interpretation may not be correct, but it seems to me that the images I created and displayed here did not fall under the US Code definition of "ch1ld p0rn0graphy."

I doubt that this will change my decision about deleting the images and not posting similar images in the future because it is not worth the hassle if someone wants to make an issue of it.

Monday, April 27, 2009

new acquisition

I just bought this new "mock wrap" dress from Metrostyle on sale ($32 instead of $40). I love the color and I already have shoes that match!

I think it will be lovely wearing this dress as I stroll down 5th Avenue in June!

no kidding

I received an e-mail yesterday from a regular reader of this blog. She mentioned that she enjoys the humorous images I create and display here, but when she showed one recent image to a friend of hers, the friend called it "k1dd1e p0rn."

To tell you the truth, I did not see it, but "beauty is in the eye of the beholder." So with that, I deleted all the images on this blog that contained children and in the future, I will not display any image here that depicts a child.

And so it goes.

Friday, April 24, 2009

femulated in the past


This unusual 1935 image of a femulator is a studio photograph taken by "Unity Studio - Theatrical Photographer -168 W. 46th St., N.Y. - Bryant 7279."

This image is "unusual" because she went to all the expense of getting photographed professionally, but does not wear a wig to complete the femulation. Go figure!

As usual, click on the image to enlarge it.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

crossdressed in the past


This early 20th Century image of a femulator is a hand-colored studio photograph taken by "Rembrandt, 1364 B'way, N.Y."

As usual, click on the image to magnify it.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

"The Queen" and "Dream Boys Revue"

In case you did not read the comments to Sunday's blog posting, the image accompanying that post came from the womanless beauty pageant held in New York City in 1967, which was documented in the 1968 film The Queen.

Snippets of the film are on YouTube and a VHS of the 68-minute documentary is available from various sources including Amazon.

I purchased the VHS when it was released back in 1996 and it probably cost around $20. The Queen VHS is now out of print, not available on DVD, and as a result, I guess it is kind of rare because it now sells for $98.35 new and $44.99 used on Amazon.

Bright Lights Film Journal has a thorough review of The Queen here.

Is it worth it?

It is historically significant on a cultural and personal level, but I don't think I would not pay $45 for it.

When The Queen was released, I saw an ad for it in The Village Voice similar to the image accompanying this post. As a budding femulator, the film was definitely of interest to me. I considered taking the train to New York City just to see it because I knew that it would never be shown in my hometown or thereabouts.

But I feared that if I went to NYC to see it, what would people think. Not that I would tell anybody what I was up to, but I even worried what strangers would think if they saw me entering or exiting the theater where it was playing.

So, I waited almost 30 years to see the film and it was not worth the wait. As I remember, I was not impressed with its quality and content and I never watched it again, but now that I have been writing about it, I may watch it again just to see what I think of it now.

A similar film that I prefer is Dream Boys Revue, a 1985 documentary about 30 female impersonators participating in a beauty pageant competition.The quality and content is much better than The Queen and it is available from Amazon on VHS new and used for $14.95, so it is certainly more affordable.

A personal note regarding Dream Boys Revue:

Early in the film, they introduce each contestant by name and hometown. All the contestants were from big cities with populations of a half-million or more (more or less), except for one contestant, who came from a small city with a population of just over 100,000. Would you believe she came from my hometown?

It's a small world (after all).

Monday, April 20, 2009

on tap

I need some new stuff!

I saw a nice girly dress at Fashion Bug yesterday, but I was in boy mode and did not want to try it on without foundation garments, so I will have to return en femme.

With my upcoming "Staci Does New York City" adventure in mind, I am looking for a big handbag. I saw this one on the Payless Web site that fits the bill (it is big and "edgy," just like me). The local Payless store did not have it in stock, so I will have to try some other stores or order one online.

I received an e-mail over the weekend from Professor Schildroth at Southern Connecticut State University inviting me to do outreach at her two human sexuality classes during the first week of May. That will probably be my next outing en femme and I am looking forward to it; not just being out en femme, but having an opportunity to speak to civilians about being trans.

I don't know for a fact, but I imagine that when a college student taking a human sexuality class learns that a crossdresser is coming in for show and tell, he/she might expect a refugee from The Jerry Springer Show to show up. Hopefully, my presentation leaves them with a more positive impression.

fitting in


As usual, click on the image to magnify it.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

how to host a womanless pageant


Feel frustrated trying to find a womanless beauty pageant in which to compete? Then, host your own pageant.

eHow describes how to do it yourself here.

Friday, April 17, 2009

social networking

During our chat at my support group's banquet last month, my friend Jamie Dailey suggested that I join Facebook.

For the uninitiated, Facebook, according to Wikipedia, "is a free-access social networking website that is operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc. Users can join networks organized by city, workplace, school, and region to connect and interact with other people. People can also add friends and send them messages, and update their personal profiles to notify friends about themselves."

I have been avoiding social networking because (1) I thought it might be addictive and (2) if I was correct about (1), I was worried I would be spending even more time on the Internet.

I was correct; after I joined, I spent a lot more time online for about a week. But after that initial week of exploration, my time on Facebook diminished to the point now thatI log on once every day or two and only spend a few minutes catching up.

*Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in."*

A couple of days ago, I read Chloe Prince’s blog, Pink Thoughts, in which she announced the news about her new Web site, a transgendered social network called PinkEssence. According to Chloe, PinkEssence "has many of the bells and whistles of FaceBook, but without all the clutter of FaceBook."

It sounded interesting, so I joined up.

I am no Facebook expert, but after poking around PinkEssence for awhile, it seems to be a lot like Facebook with a definite transgendered bend. I guess you can call it "Facebook en femme."

For what it's worth, I have spent a lot more time on PinkEssence than Facebook the last few days. It is definitely a cool Web site, so check it out.

* So says Michael Corleone in Godfather III

womanless pageant news

This just in from the Womanless Pageant Hotline...

"Men showed their stuff in drag at the annual Womanless Beauty Pageant April 10 at the Salem (Arkansas) High School Gym."

Read all about it here.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

jazzed

I am jazzed* about spending four days en femme in New York City!

My workshop is in the Chelsea section of NYC and I plan to stay at a hotel within a short walking distance of the workshop.

Chelsea seems to be a perfect choice for a T-girl. According to Wikipedia, "Chelsea is a melting pot of cultures. Above 23rd Street, by the Hudson River, the neighborhood is post-industrial, featuring the newly-hip High Line that follows the river all through Chelsea. Eighth Avenue is a center for LGBT-oriented shopping and dining, and from 20th to 22nd street between Ninth and Tenth avenue, mid-nineteenth century brick and brownstone townhouses are still occupied, a few even restored to single family use.

"Since the mid-1990s, Chelsea has become a center of the New York art scene, as art galleries moved there from SoHo."

This is very exciting!

Between now and then, I have to decide what to bring to wear. I figure something casual for the daytime and something dressier for the evenings. Maybe two outfits each that I can mix and match to create eight outfits. Maybe I will even have to buy something new. What a dilemma!!!

I came across an interesting story about another girl's adventures in New York City. I hope my four days in NYC are as half as good as her six days there!

Did I mention how jazzed I am about the prospects of this trip?

* In all my life, I never used the word "jazzed" until now. I think I needed something to kick me out of the winter doldrums and this must be it!

Blake Lively: woman or man?

Thank-you Lauralee for e-mailing me a link to this story about Blake Lively.

I had no idea who is the person named "Blake Lively." Below the story's headline ( Blake Lively Feels 'Like a Tranny'), I see a photo of Blake posing for the cover of Allure. I assumed that Blake Lively was male (Blake is a boy's name, is it not?) and he was dressed en femme. I was very impressed with his fantastic femulation; he looked very hot!

After reading the article, I learned that Blake is female and the poor girl is complaining that she feels like a man.

"I feel like a tranny a lot of the time. I don't know, I'm ... large? They put me in six-inch heels, and I tower over every man. I've got this long hair and lots of clothes and makeup on. I just feel really big a lot of the time, and I'm surrounded by a lot of tiny people. I feel like a man sometimes."

By the way, Mr. Lively's height is 5' 10".

Monday, April 13, 2009

Manhattan in June

I will attend a four-day workshop in New York City during a weekend in June. The workshop begins mid-morning and ends early in the afternoon, so I am free to experience The City the rest of the day.

Most importantly, I intend to spend the four days en femme. I will take the train to NYC and check into my hotel in boy mode, then I will become Staci Lana for four days.

In October, I spent a week en femme 24/7 in Provincetown attending Fantasia Fair, but even though I had a great time, Provincetown during Fantasia Fair is really just another extension of The Closet. Admittedly, it is a big extension, but it is still a closet; everyone in town knows who you are and they treat you with kid gloves.

In Manhattan, the gloves come off and I will interact with the public as a woman or as a "tranny" depending on the public's ability to recognize my birth gender and/or my ability to disguise my birth gender. It will be a real life experience.

I am very excited about my long weekend en femme 24/7 in Manhattan; it should be a very interesting four days.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

300,000 hits

Overnight, the hit counter for this blog passed 300,000.

It took 16 months to hit 100,000, six months for the next 100,000, and just over three months for the last 100,000.

I am not sure that I am so deserving, but I am very honored and thank you for visiting!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

the fake lashes and the First Lady

In the past, I have worn fake eyelashes, usually for dress-up affairs like banquets and weddings, or when I model in fashion shows. Even though my natural eyelashes are long and lush, the fakes make an obvious difference and I would wear them more often if I was more adept at putting them on.

I estimate that half the time I try to wear fake eyelashes, I abandon the effort because I have trouble putting them on, keeping them on, or making up my eyes after putting them on. Too much glue and/or too little glue is the usually the culprit.

Practice makes perfect and I will keep trying, while referring often to this video on how to do it.

Meanwhile, some folks are on our First Lady's case because she wore obviously fake eyelashes during her visit to 10 Downing Street in London last week.

I thought she looked great and if you are interested, go here to see how she looked and to participate in the poll regarding her look.

"she" can't miss

As usual, click on the image to magnify it.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

recommended reading

I highly recommend reading Donna's recent blog posting titled The Cost of Doing Business.

She is a very brave trans-woman!

I so identify with what she has done. It's what I want to do, but not until the state or fed passes some transgender anti-discrimination legislation.

vintage clothes

Suzy Parker, 1952While driving to work this morning, I'm listening to tunes on my iPod in "shuffle" mode, which means the iPod randomly picks songs to play from 8,786 songs I have stored on it. So, I never know what it will play next and sometimes it is something "new" to my ears, for example, an obscure song that was uploaded along with other songs on a CD or an old LP that I digitized.

So on comes a song I don't recognize. The singer sounds like Paul McCartney, which surprises me because I am a BIG Beatles fan and I thought I was familiar with all the Beatles' group and solo works. I glance at the iPod and it is McCartney singing Vintage Clothes from the Memory Almost Full album.

The second verse of the song caught my attention.
We jump up for joy
Who cares if we look like a girl or boy
What we are, is what we are and what we wear
Is vintage clothes, vintage clothes
Alright, Paul!

Ever since the "sweet Loretta Martin" bit in Get Back, I always thought Paul had a soft spot in his heart for transgenders.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

crossdressed in the past


Out en femme in the late 1920's. (I love the outfit the girl on the right is wearing.)

As usual, click on the image to magnify it.

activists push for transgender protections

HARTFORD, Conn. - Transgendered Connecticut residents and supporters say they are not giving up their fight for specific protections in state laws.

A bill to protect transgendered people from discrimination died in a legislative committee last week. Activists gathered Tuesday at the Capitol to keep pushing for the measure, asking lawmakers to add it as an amendment to other legislation.

Read the rest of the story here.

lobby day redux

Instead of attending Lobby Day today, I had to go to work because I was told that my presence was required for a meeting I could not miss.

Just minutes ago, I was informed that the meeting has been postponed until tomorrow!

Needless to day, I am very unhappy about this turn of events.

The Lobby Day events begin in an hour, which does not give me anywhere near the time I need to drive home, dress en femme, and drive to Hartford.

Damn!

fashionable country

Sunday night, the television was droning on in the background as I did work on my laptop. While I hacked away, the Academy of Country Music Awards show began and I planned to change the channel because (a) I had no interest in watching another awards show, (b) I don't follow country music, and (c) I dislike Reba McIntyre, who hosted the show.

But as the show went on, I noticed that the women appearing on the show were dressed in high glam. So, I began paying closer attention and did not change the channel.

Actually, I did change the channel once.

In my humble opinion, Miley Cyrus has a lousy voice. Her voice is so bad that I changed channels while she brayed. How she got so far on so little talent is truly amazing.

Back to the women's outfits.

Wow! The country stars outdid the film stars on the awards shows this year. I watched a lot of the film awards shows this year and the fashions in general were mediocre. Nothing caught my eye and made me wish I had a dress like that!

In contrast, on Sunday night, one woman after another appeared in knock-out gowns and dresses. Even donkey-voiced Miley and horse-faced Reba wore some nice things.

But my favorite outfit of the evening was the short, white, one-sleeved dress that Carrie Underwood wore at the beginning of the show (see the accompanying photo). I thought the dress was fabulous. I don't recall what she sang, but I will remember what she wore for a long time!

Monday, April 6, 2009

lobby day tomorrow

Despite my plans, I learned today that I will be unable to attend Lobby Day tomorrow.

I suspected late last week that work might bump my plans, so I held off calling my state senator and state representative to schedule appointments to meet with them on Tuesday.

My suspicions became reality today. So Plan B is to e-mail my state senator and state representative tomorrow and urge them to support legislation to protect transgenders from discrimination.

what's up with Ashley Adams?

Yesterday, I received an e-mail suggesting a novel I might enjoy reading. A short excerpt from the book followed the e-mail.

Nothing in the e-mail or excerpt whet my appetite for the book, so I wrote back and asked why might I enjoy reading the book.

Basically, the reply said that if I knew "why" ahead of time, it would spoil my enjoyment of the novel.

Here is a blurb about the book, whose title is Ashley Adams:

"Ashley Adams is the story of a successful young woman of twenty-five. She has a career as a model and actress. She holds a black belt in karate and is working towards her Master's degree. She is compassionate, caring and generous, helping those around her. To others, her life appears to be perfect. However, everyone has their secrets. As Ashley prepares to confide in her boyfriend about the most important aspect of her life, someone else discovers that secret. Ashley finds herself in a struggle to save her career and her future..."

My guess is that Ashley Adams is a transgender.

William Kelly is the author of Ashley Adams as well as the e-mails I received. The book is available at Buy Books on the Web and Barnes & Noble.

running on empty

I am running on empty, worn out, and feel like crap (physically and emotionally).

I have been dealing with a lot of annoying issues lately; nothing big, but a lot of small stuff.

I know I shouldn't worry about the small stuff, but I do.

Do I have the makings of a head cold or is it an allergy attack?

Maybe a good night's sleep will do the trick. Maybe not. I dunno.

The weather has been lousy around here, too, which doesn't help.

I am bummed out about it all.

And so it goes.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

very fond of Fonda's outfit

I viewed Sunday in New York on TCM, a 1964 romantic comedy starring Jane Fonda and Rod Taylor.

I enjoyed the film because (1) it included many scenes filmed in my favorite city with (2) many women dressed in the height of fashion, the early to mid-1960s (my favorite fashion era).

Ms. Fonda, in particular, wore some outfits to die for. My favorite was the dress she wore in the photos accompanying this posting.

The photos don't do her outfit justice. You have to see the film yourself to see why I am drooling.

As usual, click on an image to magnify it.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

ephemera with provenance

Yesterday, I received a new addition to my female impersonator ephemera collection: The Wonder Club matchbook you see on the right.

About a month ago, I received an e-mail out of the blue from Dennis, who wrote, "While doing a search on Google for 'The Wonder Club New Orleans,' your page came up. I noticed your interest in ephemera and since I was researching the Wonder Club because I have a matchbook from there I was going to offer on eBay I thought you might be interested in it and I wouldn't have to list it."

I was definitely interested and after exchanging e-mails, Dennis offered the matchbook cover gratis because it was not in the best condition. He also provided the following story about how he obtained it.

"I'm a collector of nautical/navy stuff and I won an old US Navy hat (the obsolete, brimless, Donald Duck type) on eBay a few years ago. I had put it away for a couple of years, but took it out recently to display it in my new apartment.

"As I was checking it and 'squaring it away,' I felt something in the headband. I figured out how to get it out without damaging the hat or the object. It was the matchbook! Some sailor had stashed this book of matches in his hat years ago and there it was until I found it last week.

"He (or someone) had written in pencil Lt.(?) Becht on the inside of the matchbook. You can see it in one of the pictures. This hat belonged to an enlisted man. There is no name written in the hat although there usually is."

"I know what I'm gonna say next might seem crazy or something, but here goes - I have no use for this item, but I hate to throw ANYTHING away. Due to its - not so great condition - and wanting someone who collects these types of items to have it, it's yours if you want it for free.

"This arrangement will satisfy my borderline craziness for refusing to throw anything away and at the same time, take it off my hands. Just tell me where to send it and I'll put it in the mail. All I ask is if you find out anything about the matchbook, Lt. Brecht or the club itself let me know."

What a great story!

Dennis, thank you so much for an interesting addition to my collection.

By the way, I estimate that the matchbook is from the 1940s or early 1950s. It features a photo of Mr. Billy Richard, "Gay Guy from Hollywood."

And, as usual, click on the image to magnify it.

Friday, April 3, 2009

lobby day

My next adventure out en femme will find me at our state capital lobbying state legislators to pass legislation to protect transgenders from discrimination.

Although discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression is pervasive, Connecticut has no explicit law protecting individuals from discrimination based on gender identity or expression in employment, education, housing, public accommodations, and credit. HB 6452, An Act Concerning Discrimination, would remedy this by adding the phrase “gender identity or expression” to Connecticut’s existing non-discrimination laws, prohibiting this discrimination, and making our state safe for all residents.

This bill gives Connecticut’s Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO) the authority to investigate complaints of discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression and order appropriate remedies if such discrimination is found. It applies the same rules, procedures, and remedies that apply to other types of prohibited discrimination.

Tuesday is Lobby Day. The day begins with a 10 AM meeting in the Legislative Office Building in Hartford where we will be prepped on how to lobby our state representatives. Thereafter, we will actually lobby our state senator and state representative (like the federal government, Connecticut has two legislative houses, but only one senator and one representative per district).

My state senator has been an opponent of bill in the past, but now that he has announced that he is running for Chris Dodd's seat in the US Senate, I wonder if his views have become more diverse, but I doubt it.

My state representative is a Democrat and will probably be more open-minded. When I e-mailed him about the bill in the past, he replied that he would give it a fair shake.

And so it goes.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

the lost Lucy episode

Here is the script of a lost episode of I Love Lucy that never aired because Desi Arnaz thought it would ruin his manly Latin image. Reportedly, Lucille Ball had the only kinescope of that show and used it as blackmail whenever she thought Desi was philandering.

Click here to view the script.

To view the script, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, which you can obtain for free from http://www.abode.com/.