Thursday, February 1, 2018

First Time

What was your first encounter with a crossdresser out and about among the civilians?

My wife and I were in New Orleans in 1984 for a speaking engagement at a ham radio convention. While in the Crescent City, we took in the World's Fair and visited the other sites that the city had to offer.

After walking around the French Quarter for an hour or so, we parked ourselves on a park bench in Jackson Square to rest and cool down. While seated there, I noticed a couple of crossdressers walking side-by-side through the Square. They were dressed as civilians not drag queens and tried to blend in with the other civilians.

Their height, flat posteriors and the fact that they were clearly wearing wigs gave them away to me. Not to mention that I was not the only person to notice them; there were a few gawkers, smirks and giggles as they passed by.

I was impressed with their courage to go out in public and to put up with the ridicule they encountered.

Doing the same myself a decade or so later, I realized it was not courage. Rather, it was the need to be authentic and damn the torpedoes of ridicule.

Source: HauteLook
Wearing Gracia (Source: HauteLook)

Christopher Hewett
Christopher Hewett dresses pretty for the Choreographer's Ball in the 1967 film The Producers. (I watched the film in ultra-high-definition on a 55-inch LED TV last night and for the first time, I noticed the other pretty frocks in his closet.) 


  1. Oh my, i never had the courage to got out pretty.
    Only a few nights around the house where i knew no one could see me...
    I wish i was as brave as the ladys back then or you are.

    1. Hi Eliza - We all do what we can within our comfort zone. Maybe someday you will feel comfortable going out, but until then, do what YOU can!

  2. My experiences involved customers shopping in the store where I worked 35 years ago.

    We had a couple of regulars.
    One was an older femulator dressed in fancier clothes and I always thought the look was stylish but matronly. Her make-up was applied very heavily. In 2018, probably the look (minus the cosmetics) would be more accepted by the public but in rural western Massachusetts, the hicks I worked with were cruel. I don't think anyone ever was rude to her but would comment amongst themselves.

    The second person was a clearly making a statement. He had a full beard and mustache and would wear a button up shirt and a ankle length skirt. He'd come in with his female companion. He wasn't a big guy but (using a stereotype) he was macho looking and I don't imagine any person walking up to him to give him a hard time.

    Stana, since you're from Connecticut you probably remember the tagline of my former employer. "If we can't sell it for less, we won't buy it." Their locations were: Groton, East Windsor, West Haven CT, Turner's Falls and Hadley Massachusetts!) Before Groton, there was another location in Orange, CT.
    Quoting my favorite musician Weird Al Yankovic, my "Lame claim to fame" is that in 1987 I sold a set of patio furniture to the television weatherman Charlie Bagley.

    1. Wow! That brings back memories. Back in the early 1960s, my family would drive down to the original store on State Street in New Haven, when (1) it was one of the few stores in the state open on Sundays and (2) when they really sold salvage and not big lots. My Mom bought a lot of record albums there. Pop bought paint. Later, they also had stores in my neck of the woods (Waterbury and Bristol), but then they were big lots stores, not like the original salvage store. One memory I have from the original State Street store was leaking bottles of Bosco for sale!!!

    2. As a kid in the '70s, we'd drive up to the store in Turner's Falls, Mass for the same reason as your family trips. It was the only store open on Sundays and at the time it was quite the destination. I worked for Ruby Vine for about 5 years. The 1987, a few of us from Massachusetts were recruited to work on the Independence Day holiday because Massachusetts still had businesses closed on holidays. I was rummaging through the back stock rooms and found cases of record Albums; obscure artists like Burt Reynolds. Working there was really a trip. We never knew what they'd buy next.

  3. I totally forgot! This past Sunday, when I was in the grocery store. I was on the phone with my wife discussing the things I was supposed to get when I said to her, "I just saw someone like me!" It made me feel great.

  4. I was 14, so that would have been in 1965. I was with a couple of my band mates in a section of downtown Portland, OR that was on the fringe of the "seedier" part of the city. That's where there was a music store and some pawn shops, where we would often go to check out the musical instruments and equipment. There was also a wig shop in the area, and the guitar player wanted a long wig to wear on stage (our high school had strict guidelines for boys' haircuts). He was hesitant about going in alone, so I volunteered to go in with him (I never would have had the nerve to go in by myself, either - but my reason was a bit different than was his). I tried to hold back any signs of excitement by all of the different feminine styles and colors of the wigs on display, while my friend was concentrating on finding a more mop-top style, a slightly longer version of a Beatles cut. Because my mother had a couple wigs, I had been lucky enough to be able to "borrow" one of hers on many occasions, but I so much wanted to have one of my own. I thought of using the same reason for getting one for myself, but I wanted a feminine style rather than a mop-top look.

    Anyway, just as my friend completed his transaction, another customer came out from the back of the store, where the styling salon was located. My trans-dar wasn't so keen in those days, but I did have my suspicions, as she walked past us to go to the door. My friend, in contradiction to his newly bolstered rock and roller persona, rushed to open the door for her. I followed closely behind, trying to figure a way to get a better look of her from the front. As my friend was lagging at the door, though, I waited for him while the woman walked to the street corner. By the time we got to the corner, she was already in the cross walk, and the light was changing. As I stood at the curb, I had a better opportunity to study this mysterious woman crossing the street. Her newly-coiffed wig looked nice, and the jacket and knee-length skirt she wore were certainly more upscale than this neighborhood warranted. Then I noticed her legs. "Yikes!" is what I screamed in silence, seeing that her hose were matting down her thick, black leg hair. This image has been etched in my memory, and I can see it now just as vividly after more than fifty years. I vowed then that I would never go out in public unless I were able to completely present myself as the lady I so wanted to be. Sadly, that wouldn't happen for another forty-two years.

    My friend's mop-top wig became suddenly "lost" about a year later. After discovering one night that I could use rollers to give it some curl, and a more-feminine look, I decided that it was of more use to me than it was to my friend.

  5. My first time of 'going out en-femme was last February--about a year ago. I was at a local Value Village buying a wig that was stored behind locked glass. I got one of the clerks to take the wig out of the cabinet, and she volunteered that her college age son was transitioning to womanhood. I volunteered a photo of myself taken inside the home, and soon we were friends and allies.
    I paid for the wig and left for home and an afternoon of personal 'femulation'. I got dressed, made-up, and finally tried out my new wig (I now have over 50 wigs!). I noted that I did indeed look good!
    What the hell(!) on a lark, I decided to go back to Value Village and show "Angie".
    As this was my first trip out, the 'logistics' were new and daunting... Purse, money, phone, keys, feminine glasses frames, and lastly, check if the 'coast was clear' of the neighbors (he is retired military police). I did rehearse how NOT to lock my keys in my truck...Having a purse is way different from 'having a wallet lump' on the left butt cheek. I did miss the 'butt lump', the lack of such was somewhat disconcerting and felt out of place....
    The neighbors were indeed 'out' (but what if we cross paths on the street?-- paranoia reigns-), so I walked to my carport checked for pedestrians and drove away.
    This was my first time wearing 42DD breast forms whilst driving a pickup. The boobs tend to get in the way of steering... About a mile from the house, there was an accident, I had to thread my way around the mess while being directed by a cop standing in the road. (What do I do if I WRECK THE TRUCK 'en-femme"?--more paranoia!)
    I made it safely to the store, I scan the parking lot for any potential personal threats to my safety, there were none. I changed into my 'Diana Prince' large lensed glasses frames.
    I entered the store, and immediately encountered 'Angie'. Angie exclaimed 'You look beautiful' and gave me a big hug!
    I lent 'Angie' my cell, and she took my photo...
    Heading back home, I circled the block hoping to dodge the neighbors (more paranoia). All was clear so I backed into the driveway and went inside to enjoy my adventure.
    That was one year ago. I have not been out in weeks. First it was a hurt back, and now the weather has gone real cold, and I miss my adventures. Hope Spring gets here soon...
    Velma.DDinkley aka ncmarko

  6. Wow Ann Nonymous! Great story.