I blame it on the long weekend!
I was invited to Memorial Day picnics Saturday and Sunday en homme.
In between picnics, this girl needed some en femme time. But none was on the horizon in the real world, so I escaped to the virtual world and posted my image on Hot or Not.
I had considered doing this a number of times in the past, but did not for one reason or another.
Anyway, I set up my account as a woman, used this photo as my profile, and sat back as the website tallied the votes.
I received 2054 votes and an average score of 8.1 on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being "not" and 10 being "hot").
I received a few messages, too. One fellow wrote, "Is your age correct? no way you look that hot at 60!"
When I assured him that my age was correct, he wrote back, "wow, amazing, :)"
That was worth the price of admission and I deleted my account.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
I blame it on the long weekend!
“They called my name and I was in total shock,’’ said Andrew, a 17-year-old who was born male but has publicly presented herself as female for the last two years.
Andrew, also known as Andii, plans to someday change her name to Andrea after she transitions. She wanted to run for prom queen in order to show other transgender teens “it gets better.”
Thank you, Rhonda Williams, for alerting me about this story.
Sunday, May 29, 2011
The recent death of a high school classmate moved me to view his image in my high school yearbook. While skimming the yearbook, I was surprised to come across a photo of a very bad femulation by one of the high school jocks at some long-forgotten event.
I have no idea why he was femulating, but I found it interesting that the jock in the photo was one who was particularly nasty to me during my high school years making fun of my femininity and/or my lack of machismo.
How ironic that he is the one wearing a dress for posterity in our high school yearbook.
|Lake Dallas, TX 1975|
|Greenville, SC, 1975|
|Jackson, TN, 1972|
|Leonard, TX, 1968|
|Madison, TN, 1975|
|Martin, TX, 1972|
|Nacona, TX, 1976 (click here for more)|
Saturday, May 28, 2011
Back when I was femulating in the closet, I was always looking for excuses to femulate outside the closet.
Halloween was a given, but that only occurred once a year, so I dreamed up scenarios that might fulfill my desire for public femulation in between October thirty-firsts.
For example, I took a journalism course in college hoping that I could write a first person account about spending a day or two as a co-ed. (Never happened.)
You get the idea.
Amanda sent me this story about a young man who femulated for charity. (What a great idea! I wish I had thought of that.)
I don't know if the young man is a trans sister looking for an excuse to femulate (you be the judge), but I do like his fashion sense and just love his dress!
Friday, May 27, 2011
SoCalSecrets sent me a bunch of tall women to add to my Famous Females of Heights List and I even found a new one myself: Eva Herzigova, whose remarkable photo graces this blog today.
Here they all are from the shortest tall female to the tallest tall female.
5'8" – Taylor Momsen – actress, television Gossip Girl
5'8" – Madeline Zima – actress, television The Nanny
5'9" – Lauren Lane – actress, television The Nanny
5'9" – Kaitlin Olson – actress, television It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
5'10" – Melissa Peterman – actress, television Reba, Working Class
5'10" – Lusia Strus – actress, film 50 First Dates
5'11" – Georgina Chapman – fashion model and designer
5'11" – Eva Herzigova – fashion model and actress
Thursday, May 26, 2011
I carried flats to the Hamvention each day, but I never wore them. My black patent mid-heel pumps with white piping were very comfortable. I wore them all day both days, only slipping them off for a few minutes while I took breaks in the back of our booth.
Although I took three sets of Kiss brand stick-on nails with me, I only used one pair. I put them on Thursday morning and took them off Saturday night no worse for wear. (I could have kept them on if I had kept on being en femme.)
I had a excellent time attending the Dayton Hamvention en femme last weekend. In addition to enjoying the Hamvention experience, I also received an education and now I understand how men can be "pigs" from a woman's perspective.
I did not have to live as a woman to figure out that men can be pigs. Living as a man amongst men, I discovered that fact a long time ago. Not all men are pigs, of course, but sadly, porkers constitute a lot of the male population.
Being a pig was not a good fit for me. I rejected the pig's life and lived my life my way, that is, the way that came natural to me. Turns out that "my way" was considered a feminine way of life by those who were keeping score. So be it.
During my early explorations out en femme, I avoided encounters with males whenever possible. But as I became more comfortable being out en femme, I began to accept encounters with males whenever they occurred.
Working a booth at an event like the Hamvention where approximately 85% of the attendees are male, it is impossible to avoid encounters with males. (I can count on one hand my encounters with females while working the booth this year and last.) It was a test of fire for this trans booth babe.
I guess I passed the test because now the only males I make a point of avoiding are guys I've known in my past life, who I am not ready to come out to yet. And even then, I probably don't have to avoid them because they will not recognize me as my close encounter with an old friend in the elevator Saturday night proved (I guess I pass in more than one way).
Now that I encounter males without trepidation, I understand how men can be considered "pigs" by the distaff side of the population.
Throughout the weekend, I constantly noticed men checking me out. Some were surreptitious, while most just flat out stared.
At this stage in my life as a woman, I find that flattering and affirming. But I imagine that the ogling can get old after a few encounters like I had with the fellow staring at me nose-to-nose in the elevator Saturday night.
On the other hand, I also encountered "gentlemen" at the Hamvention, who know how to treat a woman with respect --- well at least they treated me with respect. And that works for me!
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Saturday evening, the Contest Dinner was at the Crowne Plaza Hotel downtown about four miles from my hotel. I drove downtown and parked in a parking ramp that is connected to the hotel and convention center by skywalks.
There was an "international festival" at the convention center, so after I parked my car, I found myself walking in a throng of people (mostly young adults and children) all dressed casually while I was in my LBD and heels.
As I walked the skywalk, a woman passed by and turned momentarily to check me out. My trans-radar blipped briefly, but I considered it an anomaly.
At the end of the skywalk, the woman held the door open for other people and as I passed by, she said (in a very deep, manly voice), "You have a lot of courage."
I turned back and asked, "What did you say?"
She repeated, "You have a lot of courage."
At that point, most of the throng turned left to go to the international festival, while I turned right to enter the Crowne Plaza Hotel.
My trans-radar was correct, but what did she mean by "You must have a lot of courage" statement.
She was dressed casually in a top and khaki slacks. She did not attend the Contest Dinner, so I assumed she went to the international festival. If she assumed I was attending the international festival, too, then her comment made sense because I would have been way overdressed for that event and would have stuck out like the proverbial sore thumb.
Fashion Note: Saturday evening, I wore my Vee-neck empire "little black dress," nude hosiery, black patent 3-inch heel Mary-Janes, and black and silver disc earrings and necklace (see photo).
The Contest Dinner was similar to last year's because like last year, me and my dress were ogled by a lot by men (and a few women). Big difference this year was that I smiled a lot, made eye contact with the oglers, and found myself responding to an occasional "hello" even though I did not know a soul (although I did recognize some call signs).
I found a table with empty seats as close to the dais as possible; asked the five gents already seated there if I could join them. They were ok with my request, so I sat down and they ignored me.
After five or ten minutes, I introduced myself and they introduced themselves and then continued to ignore me.
Turned out that they were a group of expatriates from the same motherland and although they spoke English, they chatted amongst themselves in their native tongue. Two more expatriates joined them and the one who sat next to me was LOUD!
Actually, they were all loud and very rude talking so loudly during the speeches and presentations on the dais that people at other tables looked at our table wondering when they would shut up. They also ignored me the whole time.
I should have moved to another table, but I did not want to be rude! The meal and presentations were excellent, but I did not enjoy the company of that bunch.
The only positive thing related to that bunch was when a woman came over to our table and asked one of the guys where they were from. When he revealed the name of their motherland, she was impressed and wanted to know everyone's call sign. As the guy rattled off each call sign, he eventually got to me and said, "The lady is WA1---; she is not from our country."
Thank you for the "lady."
A Ride In An Elevator
After the Contest Dinner, I decided to check out the lounge on the roof of the hotel.
The elevator was full on the way up. I was standing with my back to the rear wall of the elevator. A man older than me stood right in front of me at a 90 degree angle. He turned his head and stared at me, then turned away and looked straight ahead. Then, he turned his head and stared at me again and again turned away and looked straight ahead. This happened three or four times.
Our faces were probably two feet apart and I was very uncomfortable, so I stared away from him until he got off one floor below the lounge.
I did not know what to make of him.
The lounge was quiet and I sat there about ten minutes without waitstaff coming around to take my order, so I left.
As I waited for the elevator with six other people, a man I know joined us. I go back over 35 years with this fellow. He used to sell ham radios locally and I bought one from him eons ago. We were also officers of the same radio club back then and I even attended a Rochester, NY ham radio convention with him riding in his van with three or four others. That was way back in the mid-1970s.
Since then, I have had one other encounter with him; about ten years ago at another ham radio convention.
We both know a lot of the same people in my neck of the woods and I am not prepared to be outed to them yet, so I worried that he would recognize me.
As the elevator ride began, he asked what floor I wanted and I told him in my best feminine voice, "Mezzanine." A couple of floors down, everyone got off except he and I. He did not say a word the rest of the way, but I could feel his eyes checking me out from head to toe.
He got off one floor above my floor without saying a word. I breathed a sigh of relief because I was sure he had not figured me out. (Knowing him, if he had recognized me, he would have said something, so I guess I passed.)
I worked our booth off and on most of the day and made a few forays around the convention floor.
Fashion Note: Saturday daytime, I wore my navy blue and white graphic print shift with a boat neck and spliced short sleeves, black tights, black patent mid-heel pumps with white piping, and black and silver disc earrings and necklace (see photo).
While walking around the convention Saturday, a man walked towards me and said, "You are so pretty."
I thought that was very forward of him, so I assumed that I must know the gent. I asked him, "Do I know you?"
Turned out that we were complete strangers, but he was so impressed with my appearance that he had to tell me.
Later, he showed up at our booth and asked if I was trans. I dunno if he suspected that when he made the "pretty" comment or if he figured it out during our conversation. In either case, that was very, very, very forward of him and I should have asked if he was an ass.
When I returned home, I found an e-mail from the fellow and he wrote, "You are very hot."
I wonder if he was a “tranny chaser?”
A ham walked by our booth Saturday afternoon, while I was on the front line and said to me, "You're the best looking ham here."
All I could say was “Thank-you!'”
While I was working the booth, nine other trans hams stopped by to say hello and chat. (You know who you are!) They are all readers of this blog, so they were looking for me and found me.
By the way, one wore a denim skirt; the rest were en homme.
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
I attended the TAPR-AMSAT Dinner.
Fashion Note: Friday evening, I wore my black and white print A-line dress, black tights, black patent mid-heel pumps with white piping, and black and silver disc earrings (see photo).
I glammed up my daytime makeup and I thought I looked very nice. The dinner was at a banquet hall about a half hour drive from our hotel and I rode with two fellows from my group. One of the fellows said that I looked "spiffy."
At the banquet hall, I saved some seats at a table for friends and we were joined by others who claimed the empty seats at our table. Two fellows from Long Island sat next to me and we had enjoyable conversations throughout the evening.
The meal and after-dinner presentations were very good and I had a pleasant evening. It was uneventful because it seemed that I was accepted as a lady and treated as one.
I attended the Dayton Hamvention this past weekend and I was en femme the whole time.
Those two posts summarized the highlights of Thursday afternoon and evening. I will attempt to summarize the rest of my Hamvention experiences in this and in following posts.
By the way, I am withholding all names and call signs to protect the innocent.
I worked our booth most of the day, but I did attend a forum late in the morning. This was a forum related to a niche in ham radio in which I am active. In fact, I wrote three books about that niche and actually moderated the same forum at past Hamventions.
One reason I attended this forum was to reintroduce myself to any old friends that showed up. I did see a few in the crowd of over 400 people, but managed to only talk to one fellow I have known for years. The others got lost as the crowd dispersed when the forum ended.
Fashion Note: Friday daytime, I wore my black jacquard sheath, black tights, black patent mid-heel pumps with white piping, and pearl jewelry (see photo).
Whereas, last year, I was shy about introducing the "new" me to old friends and acquaintances, this year, I made a point of reintroducing myself especially since my editor revealed that most people at ARRL Headquarters knew about me even though I only came out to three people there.
The fact that the word got out did not bother me in the least. It just felt odd that I have been dealing with a lot of these people for the past year assuming that they did not know; not that I would have done anything different if I knew they knew, but it would have been nice to know that they knew (know what I mean?).
So, I made the rounds looking for people I avoided last year.
Almost everyone I met up with was fine with my reintroduction. Only one person had a different reaction; he worked at ARRL Headquarters and I assumed he knew, but it turned out that he did not know.
When I met up with him, he was very, very surprised and I left him unsure what his reaction was beyond the initial shock. (I e-mailed him and apologized for the ambush, but so far, I have not received a response.)
I go back a very long time with the head man at the ARRL, so I wanted to meet up with him, too. Being the head man, every time I saw him during the Hamvention, he was surrounded by people. So, I waited for a better opportunity.
Saturday morning, before the doors opened, he came walking down the aisle where our booth was located and I waved him over to our booth. Without saying a word, he stuck out his hand to shake mine and said, "Hello, Stana."
What a classy guy! And he even pronounced Stana correctly!
Monday, May 23, 2011
The words will take awhile to compose, but cropping and resizing photos is easy. So, while I compose the words about my trip to the Hamvention, I leave you with this photo. (That's me wearing my new LBD before going out to the Contest Dinner on Saturday evening.)
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Saturday, May 21, 2011
I have lots to say, but it will have to wait until I have time to key it all into my Mac and have reliable Internet access to post it on the blog.
But, in a nutshell, it has been a very positive experience.
Friday, May 20, 2011
Internet access from my hotel in Dayton was brief --- about an hour Thursday afternoon.
I hoped to get access at the Hara Arena, but no luck so far.
Last night went well. The spouse of one of the other board members was present. I have known her for years having met her at other ham radio events, but she had not met the new version of me. I am sure her husband had prepared her, but I did not know what to expect.
When she saw me, she greeted me with a big hug and we chatted throughout the evening, so I guess she is ok with the new me.
By the way, here is the requisite fashion "news:" Yesterday, I wore my gray sleeveless sweater dress, gold scarf, black tights, and flats. Today, I wore my black jacquard sheath, black tights, pearls, and black patent mid-heel pumps with white piping. I also brought a pair of flats, but have not switched footwear, yet.
Thursday, May 19, 2011
The wifi signal was so weak in my room that I thought that might be the problem, so I took my iBook down to the lobby. The signal was not much better there, but the Internet was accessible.
Two gents (guests, not hotel employees) came by to ask if I was having trouble; they were happy to inform me that the Internet had just come up. So, chivalry is not dead --- you just have to dress en femme to find it!
I think I am going to crash for awhile before dinner and the board of directors meeting.
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Before embarking on an extended time out en femme (like my trip to Hamvention this week), there is always some trepidation.
This morning, I awoke at 4 AM and could not fall back to sleep because I was thinking about all that could go wrong during my trip. By the time I got out of bed nearly two hours later, I was so agitated that I seriously considered cancelling my plans.
Mind you, all of my past extended times out en femme have been wonderful positive and affirming experiences with nary a problem.
So why do I worry?
It is my nature to worry. Always has been. And my biggest worry is that since I have never had any problems in the past, I am way overdue to have a problem.
That's the half-empty glass perspective; I need to concentrate on the half-full glass perspective, which is that since I never had a problem, I must be doing things right and if I continue to do things right, my track record should continue unblemished.
Now, that should be my mantra!
Monday, May 16, 2011
In case anyone is curious, here is my schedule for the femulating portion of this week.
• Drive from Connecticut to Western Pennsylvania.
• Stay overnight in Western Pennsylvania.
• Drive from Western Pennsylvania to Dayton, Ohio.
• Check-in to my hotel.
• Attend my board of director's meeting.
• Attend Hamvention (work booth, attend presentations, visit other booths).
• Attend our annual Hamvention banquet dinner.
• Attend Hamvention (work booth, attend presentations, visit other booths).
• Attend another Hamvention banquet dinner
• Drive from Dayton to Connecticut
Considering that I will spend most of that schedule en femme is exciting to me. The opportunity to be my female self 24/7 for a few days more than makes up for the 1500-mile roadtrip between here and there and back, which is a drag. Maybe next year I will fly.
Sunday, May 15, 2011
I've worn women's clothing and cosmetics since the age of 16 -- but that doesn't mean what you might expect
Yesterday, Salon posted this article, which "is an adapted excerpt from Jon-Jon Goulian's memoir The Man in the Gray Flannel Skirt, available from Random House on May 17."
I read the article and identified with some of the things the author wrote, but not everything.
And so it goes.
Saturday, May 14, 2011
I was also shimmering with pride after I read this story in The Barrie Examiner about Kyle Rehling, a transgendered youth, who "holds the distinction of being Barrie's first transgender student mayor."
Read the all about it here.
Friday, May 13, 2011
"Femulate" is this week's "Word of the Week" over at the always informative and entertaining Jessica Who? blog. (Thank you, Jessica!)
Coincidentally, I was Googling something trans-related yesterday and I ended up on a forum where some girls were discussing something or other that was trans-related, and one of the girls used the word "femulate" in her forum posting. She was not referring to this blog, but was using femulate as a verb.
And that was not the first time I have seen the word used in that way.
What have I done?
As Henry Frankenstein once remarked, "It's alive!"
Blogger has been experiencing some technical difficulties that affected some of the blogs it hosts including this one.
Early last evening, I could not view this blog at all.
Later last evening, I could view this blog, but I could not log in to manage it (e.g., post new posts, moderate comments, etc.). The problem persisted until early this afternoon.
UPDATE: Due to the technical difficulties mentioned above, Blogger lost unmoderated comments. I have four in my e-mail in-box awaiting moderation, but Blogger does not recognize them now. The four are from Anonymous, Adriana, JohnH, and Meg; so don't think I am rejecting your comments, folks, Blogger has lost them!
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
|2010 Dayton Hamvention|
By this time next week, I will be well on my way driving 730 miles to Dayton, Ohio to attend Hamvention en femme.
I have attended Hamvention 22 times in the past 33 years, but last year was the first time I attended en femme. (You can read about that experience here).
Last year's attendance en femme was an affirming experience. As I concluded last year, "Overall, the weekend worked out great. Everyone I encountered accepted me one way or another.
"All my friends and acquaintances were very ok with the new me.
"The strangers who engaged me throughout the weekend, hams and civilians alike, accepted me as a woman, trans or otherwise.
"I could not ask for anything more."
Truth be told, I could ask for more... from me.
Last year, I had prepared ahead of time. I came out to the people I would encounter frequently throughout the weekend, like my editor and the guys, who would be staffing my organization's booth alongside me. They expected me to be en femme, so I had no problems facing them en femme.
On the other hand, I shyed away from other people I knew at Hamvention, who were not in the know. I was unsure how they would react, so I did not bother waking up the sleeping dogs and did not confront them with a new version of me.
This year, I plan to be more outgoing and show my pretty face (!) to everyone I know at Hamvention. I expect that most folks will just shrug their shoulders and be ok with it, but I will be prepared for worse reactions.
I'll let you know how it goes.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Monday, May 9, 2011
Call me "Jamie." It is not my real name; it’s the name I go by when I dress up like a boy.
I dress like a boy because I am a crossdresser. I prefer male clothing to female clothing. In addition, I try to act like a boy. I want to be masculine, not feminine.
I want to be able to go out in society and pass as a male, but my female characteristics are difficult to disguise, so passing is a tough goal to achieve. I will keep on trying to improve my presentation because I know it can be done.
Many crossdressers have websites where they display photos of themselves crossdressed and many of the photos are very convincing. These females look just like boys, so I know passing is possible. I may not be able to fool all of the people all of the time, but it would be nice if I could fool some of the people some of the time.
Also, there are websites that provide information on how to pass as a male. They describe how to walk, talk, and act like a boy; how to style your hair to look like a boy; what undergarments to wear to achieve a male form; etc., etc. There are also online stores that cater to crossdressers where you can buy everything you need to "express your masculine side."
My crossdressing started around the age of puberty. I don't know where the idea came from; it just popped in my head while I was in the bathroom getting ready to take a shower and there was one of Dad's suits hanging on the shower curtain rod.
That pinstriped suit called my name and I could not resist trying it on. It fit me like a glove. I felt so masculine wearing it and I could not take my eyes off myself preening in the full-length mirror mounted on the bathroom door.
Suddenly, I felt very guilty and was worried that I might be caught, so I slipped out of the suit as quickly as possible, hung it back on its hangar, and took a cold shower.
Since then, I dress in my Dad's and brother's clothes whenever I am home alone.
I prefer my brother's clothes because he is only two years older than I, so he dresses like a boy my age dresses, whereas my Dad's clothes are more adult, i.e., clothing that an adult male wears.
But Dad's wardrobe includes items that my brother's wardrobe does not, so when I dress, I borrow items from both my Dad and my brother. For example, my brother has no suits, whereas Dad has six suits and I guess after that first crossdressing experience in the bathroom, I have a thing for suits.
My favorite suit is one Dad wears when he and Mom go out to a fancy restaurant or to a dinner party. I like it because it has a more youthful look than his other suits, which are more conservative, i.e., the kinds of suits you wear to the office or to church.
Dad claims that that suit is a "channel knock-off," whatever that means? The fabric of the suit is a rosy pink boucle with blue undertones. It has a cropped jacket with four buttons and four pockets and a pencil skirt that’s 20 inches long.
Dad also has a matching pair of pink pumps with a 4-inch stiletto heel; he looks so masculine in that outfit! And, wow, my Dad has great legs; he sure shows them off in that suit with its skirt about four inches above his knees, wearing off-white pantyhose perched on those 4-inch pumps.
Dad is a beautiful male. He is a platinum blonde and always looks great no matter what hairdo he wears. His makeup skills are excellent, too, with huge eyes and full pouty lips.
I try to emulate Dad when I crossdress. And sometimes when I do my makeup just so, I look a lot like him.
Sunday, May 8, 2011
Juan at New Male Fashion For The Alternative Man blog has featured some amazing images of Andrej Pejic during the past few weeks (that's where the image accompanying this post came from).
Andrej seems to look more feminine in each new photo shoot. Has he permanently switched sides and joined the other team yet?
Anyway, here are links to those recent Andrej image postings on Juan's blog:
- Pejic for Dossier
- Andrej's Roles
- Pejic for Izzue 2
- Gypsum Boy
- Pejic in Polish
- Wouldn't It Be Loverly?
- Pejic Undercover
I know that a few of my readers won't approve of Andrej Pejic being called a New Male. At least not in this editorial... starting with the title. "There's not much left of a male here", they might argue. "He's way more than wearing feminine stuff: he's unmistakably portraying a feminine character". "He's even wearing a breast-enhancing corset". "He's definitely in drag", they will say.
On the other hand, I'm sure that most of you people, like myself, will simply delight in his wonderful good looks. After all, for many decades now women fashion magazines have been promoting the "boyfriend's look", or "androgynous fashion" for the ladies. Isn't it time for the "girlfriend's look" for us?
What's more: aren't some of you dying to show up to a party in any of these getups? Be honest: Wouldn't that be lovely? But... would you look just as gorgeous?
My thoughts exactly!
Saturday, May 7, 2011
|"Everyone thinks we're sisters, but actually, we're mother and son." (from New Yorker)|
Mom was the most influential person in my life and influenced my penchant for crossdressing in a number of ways.
She was beautiful and did not need makeup. Lipstick, powder, and rouge were all she ever used. I know because I enjoyed watching her put on her minimal makeup.
She always dressed like a fashionable lady and that was difficult to accomplish because money was tight when I was a kid. As a result, Mom sewed her own clothes, as well as clothes for my sister.
I guess I was jealous of my sister and wished that Mom would sew something for me, but there were few sewing patterns for boys' clothing. However, I would have been perfectly happy if she sewed a pretty dress for me like she did for my sister.
My Dad was a great guy, but he was not around much when I was growing up. He worked all the overtime he could get to make ends meet. For a few years, he also had a second job.
I can remember way back to my earliest memories when I actually thought that my father was a visitor because his appearances at home during my waking hours were so rare. So, during my formative years, Dad was at work, while my Mom was at home raising my sister and me.
Since I was raised in an environment where the father figure was absent most of the time, it is no wonder that I tended to follow in the footsteps of the only parental figure available to me, my Mom. As a result, I admired her and wanted to do the things she did. I did not know it at the time, but she was my role model.
I was a creative kid and Mom encouraged my creative side. I loved sports, especially baseball, but I was not very good at it (I could hit the ball a mile, but I threw "like a girl"). So early on, I knew where my strengths laid.
I spent a lot of time writing and drawing and my mother supported and encouraged me. Eventually, I became a successful professional writer with a lot of thanks going to Mom.
I looked like my Mom's side of the family and inherited many of her features like her long legs and her facial features. When I do my makeup just so, I look a lot like her; people would mistake us for mother and daughter, i.e., if she were alive and I dressed en femme in her presence.
Besides influencing my creative side, she also influenced my penchant for being feminine.
Mom often commented that because I had such nice legs, I should have been a girl. If she had made that comment once, I probably would have forgotten about it, but it seemed to me that she made that comment whenever she saw my legs bare. Don't you think that may have influenced me?
She also made comments about the way I walked. She said I "tippy-toed," i.e., I walked on my toes. I assumed from her comments that tippy-toeing was not the correct way for a male to walk, but I did not know how to walk any other way. She never showed me how I was supposed to walk, so I just kept on tippy-toeing.
I don't tippy-toe any longer. As I grew older, I must have figured out how to walk like a male. However, all my early years tippy-toeing may have facilitated my walking in high heels because ever since I slipped on my first pair of pumps, I never had a problem walking in heels.
I did not think that Mom knew about my crossdressing, because she never broached the subject despite the fact that I often got into her stuff and even ruined some items that I found out the hard way, were too small for me. I was very much in the closet then and I was just as happy that she did not know. But, she knew.
As newlyweds, my wife and I crossdressed for a Halloween party and when I mentioned our party plans to Mom over the phone, she asked if I had taken my box of "stuff" with me when I moved out.
I don't recall my response, but at that moment, I knew she knew. She never mentioned it again and neither did I.
However, once in awhile right up to her death, she would ask me, "Is there anything you want to tell me?"
I always thought she was referring to my crossdressing when she asked and I always said, "No."
In retrospect, I wish I had confided in Mom about me becoming a woman. She was so loving and so supportive that I think she would have helped me. (She was a great seamstress by the way and I can only dream about the outfits she might have sewn for her male daughter.) But, I did not confide in her and I regret it now.
But, if there is a heaven, I am sure Mom smiles down on me when she sees her firstborn dressed en femme enjoying her time as a woman.
So, Happy Mother's Day, Mom.
Your Loving Daughter,
Friday, May 6, 2011
This month's update of the Famous Females of Height List adds a new tall woman to the list and updates another who had made the list in the past.
Our newest addition to the list is 5'9" actress Alexandra Maria Lara, who appeared in the film The Reader.
Our update is a simple name change: 5'10" Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, nee Kate Middleton (see accompanying photo).
Thursday, May 5, 2011
I bought a pair of Dr. Dr. Scholl's “For Her Ball of Foot Cushions" last week and had two occasions to try them out.
On Saturday, I wore pumps with 4-inch stiletto heels for 8 hours. I was on my feet all morning on Saturday and by noon, my feet hurt badly. For the rest of the day, I went barefoot whenever I could.
On Tuesday, I wore pumps with 3-inch chunky heels for 10 hours. I shopped in the morning, but was off my feet most of the afternoon and evening. My feet felt fine until the very end of the day when the toe I stubbed two weeks ago began to ache.
Did the inserts make a difference?
It is hard to say.
You might conclude that....
1. The inserts did not help on Saturday, but did help on Tuesday, or
2. The pumps I wore on Tuesday were more comfortable than the pumps I wore on Saturday, or
3. My activity on Saturday was more stressful on my feet than my activity on Tuesday, or
4. A combination of all of the above.
I think the fourth conclusion might be the correct one. A true test would be to wear the same pair of shoes with and without the inserts for the same period of time, but this is not a scientific experiment and so it goes.
Nonetheless, I do plan to continue to wear the inserts.
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
I was dressed and out the door at 9:45 AM.
My main goal for the day was to attend two human sexuality classes at Southern Connecticut State University. Each semester, the class has a trans day and invites trans folks to tell their stories and then field questions from the students. The first class was at 12:20 PM, so I had some time to shop for shoes before meeting Diana to carpool to Southern.
First stop was DSW. They had many of the shoe styles I was looking for, but none in my size. So, I searched for anything in my size, but found nothing. I did find three pairs in the non-wide version of my size and tried them on. Sometimes the non-wides fit, but that was not the case at DSW yesterday.
Next stop was the mall. Online I saw some shoes at JCPenney that interested me, so that was where I intended to shop. I parked my car at the Nordstrom entrance, entered the mall through Nordstrom and lo and behold, their shoe department was in my way. I could not resist, so I looked around and found some shoes that I liked.
A saleman greeted me and I asked him what was the biggest size shoe that they stocked.
He replied that they had heels as high as six inches!
I laughed and explained that I was referring to shoe size, not heel height.
He laughed, then asked me what size I needed.
I told him the size and styles I was interested in and he went into the stock room to find what he could find.
Ten minutes passed and I was about to give up on him, but then he returned to the sales floor with a stack of ten shoeboxes; all in my size, but not in wide.
I went through his finds and eliminated about half of them on the basis of style. Then I tried on the remainder, but none of them fit. The salesman checked to see if any of them came in wide, but none of them did.
I thanked him for his help and walked through the mall to JCPenney. There I found the shoes that I saw online and asked the saleswoman if they had them in my size. She went into the stockroom, but came back empty-handed.
It was getting late, so I exited the mall, returned to my car, drove to Diana's house, got into her car, and she drove to Southern.
We arrived at the classroom and found 30 students and two other trans women, who we had done this with before. Usually, there are one or two female-to-males, but not this time, so it was just us four trans males-to-females to do the job.
The students in the two classes asked a lot of questions and in general, seemed comfortable interacting with us. I can recall only one question that I had not heard asked before, i.e., did I ever have an altercation with a male while I was en femme? My answer was "no."
Between classes, we had snacks at the student center with Professor Schildroth and talked about friends, acquaintances, and what is going on in the local trans community.
After classes, we read the students' evaluations of our presentations. Many of the students admit that we were the first trans people they have ever encountered. Just as many commented that the encounter left them with a very positive impression regarding trans people. The biggest revelation for a lot of them was that being trans does not mean being gay.
A few comments indicated that there was still some confusion, but in general, the evaluations indicated that we did a good job.
After the second class, three of us went to an Italian restaurant for dinner and then we went home.
I saved the best part of the day for last.
After the first class, a female student approached me. She said that when I entered the class, she thought I was a woman, not a trans woman, but a born woman.
Thank you, I thought to myself, but then she added that besides thinking I was a born woman, I was also the most beautiful older adult woman that she had ever seen in person!
I thanked her profusely aloud as she examined my presentation real up close now. She thought I was about 45 years old and she was very surprised when I revealed that I was 60 (even up close).
Then she told me something very personal that I will not repeat here. I thought I detected her eyes beginning to well up.
The encounter became so emotional for me that I cannot remember if I gave her hug or not. (If I didn't, I should have.)
Those few minutes with her were priceless to me and I will remember her forever.
Monday, May 2, 2011
Tomorrow, I will participate in two Human Sexuality classes at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven.
Typically, four to eight trans people show up for this event. Professor Schildroth introduces us to the class, we each give a short biography, and then the students ask questions.
Sometimes the students have lots of questions and sometimes getting them to ask questions is like pulling teeth!
You never know, but either way, our participation gives us an opportunity to do outreach amongst the civilian population. To evangelize the fact that trans people are just like everybody else... maybe with just a little more fashion-sense.
A Visit With HR
After attending the Transgender Health and Law Conference on Saturday, I had questions for my Human Resource (HR) representative at work.
Before going into see my HR rep, I double-checked the employee handbook and as I remembered, there were no references to "gender identification" or "transgender."
I was concerned with the contradictory messages I thought I received from my HR rep on the two occasions I spoke to her about being transgender. I asked my rep about what I perceived as mixed messages.
Her reply was that there was no company policy regarding transgender or gender identity. On the other hand, she believed that the company would support my gender identity because it has always fully supported its gay employees.
She was very sympathetic and supportive. I don't think she was just humoring me, but you never know.
I thought about sending her a photo of myself en femme to show that I am presentable, but I hesitated to do so because I did not think it was the right thing to do at this time.
I did send her information about the bill in our state legislature that she was unaware of concerning the extension of the state's non-discrimination laws to cover transgenders.
And so it goes.
Sunday, May 1, 2011
Yesterday, I attended Connecticut TransAdvocacy Coalition's annual Transgender Lives, The Intersection of Health and Law Conference at the UConn Health Center in Farmington, CT. I never saw so many tall women and short men in one place at one time!
Kidding aside, it was a great conference. I worked the registration table most of the morning, so I had an opportunity to meet many of the attendees. One hundred ninety-five had preregistered and there were approximately 35 walk-ins, so attendance was about 230, which is a 43% increase in attendance over last year's 160.
The crowd was evenly divided between women and men; there also was a good representation of our allies.
After my work was done, I ate lunch with Tanya, Melissa, and Vickie. I met Tanya at Fantasia Fair last October; she reads this blog religiously, so here's a shout-out to Tanya! Melissa and Vickie were new acquaintances. We all had a nice discussion over lunch.
After lunch, I attended one workshop in the afternoon concerning transgenders in the workplace. The presenters are involved in CABO, the Connecticut Alliance for Business Opportunities, LGBT Chamber of Commerce. Coming from an employer's perspective, they evangelized the hiring of LGBTs.
Most of the audience had an employee perspective, so members of the audience talked about their concerns. The discussion was so interesting that the session ran over its allotted time.
I stopped by CABO's booth afterwards and continued the discussion. I was so motivated by it all that I am seriously considering pursuing the establishment of an LGBT group at work for the good of my LGBT co-workers as well as myself.
I had been up since 4:45 AM, had worked hard in heels all morning, and by mid-afternoon, I was too pooped to Polka, so I left the premises at 2:30 PM after having a very rewarding day.
(I apologize for running the same candid photo as I ran yesterday, but hands down, it beats all of my posed photos taken at the conference. And again, thank you Jamie Dailey for taking some photos without twisting your arm!)