Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Living Lives

Saturday, I spent the day at the UConn Health Center attending the Transgender Lives Conference. (That's me in the photo above at the conclusion of the conference hanging out to catch friends for final goodbyes.)
Fashionista Atención 👉 The weather was unseasonably cold and the rooms at the Health Center run hot and cold, so I wore a long-sleeved shift dress (JB by Julie Brown) and topped it off with a shrug (Avon). Accessories were silver earrings (Napier), scarf, white watch and charm bracelet (Avon), nude high heel pumps (Payless) and a Coach bag. (I received a whole bunch of positive comments about my outfit at the conference.)
I was up at 6 AM to get ready to arrive at the Health Center between 8 and 9 AM. I was out the door at 8:15 and arrived at the conference 20 minutes later.

I checked in, got my presentation packet and walked one flight up where coffee was available. Problem was that the conference opened in the auditorium on the first floor, so I had to walk downstairs in heels with a cup of coffee in one hand (there were no tops for the cups) and my bag and presentation packet in the other hand with no hands left to hold onto the railing on the staircase. I climbed downstairs as gingerly as possible, but I still spilled some coffee on myself along the way!

There were four time slots for workshops. My presentation was in the third slot (at 1 PM) and I attended workshops in other three slots.
"Meet the Publisher and Contributors to Connecticut Voice" was a pitch to contribute articles to Voice, a new slick magazine for the Connecticut LGBT community.
"Title Withheld to Protect the Clueless" — I was clueless going into this workshop and I exited this workshop just as clueless. The folks conducting this workshop seemed to know what they were talking about, but I didn't get it. Afterwords, I asked a friend who also attended this workshop and she exited just as clueless as I was.
"The History of Transgender History" was presented by Dallas Denny, famed author and editor of transgender writings and someone I consider a friend. Dallas talked about how transgender history was basically forgotten in earlier days and how it has grown in importance with various people and organizations archiving everything they can get their hands on today.
Lunch was served at the halfway point. While in the lunch line, I met up with Dana, a Femulate reader who drove up from Philadelphia Saturday morning (216 miles) to attend the conference and in particular, see my presentation. We ate lunch together, where we discussed a variety of transgender topics and previewed my presentation.

My presentation, "Crossdressing Successfully in the Real World," was lightly attended, but the folks in attendance got an earful. We only ended the presentation when the folks attending the next presentation kicked us out of the room!

I met up with other friends, acquaintances and celebrities, most notably, Ariadne Kane, a transgender pioneer who is most famous for being one of the founders of Fantasia Fair*. Ari attended my presentation and we exchanged phone numbers so that we can continue our discussion in the near future.

Attendance seemed down from previous Transgender Lives Conferences I have attended, but those in attendance yesterday were very interested and enthusiastic, which made up for the lower attendance numbers.

It was a very eclectic crowd and all ages were in attendance. In particular, I noticed more people who appeared older than me than I had noticed in the past. Don't know what that means, but there you have it!

It was a great conference and I am already planning my presentation for next year.

* I just noticed that my book, Fantasia Fair Diaries, is referenced in Wikipedia's entry for "Fantasia Fair."

Source: Rue La La
Wearing BCBGMAXAZRIA (Source: Rue La La)

Eugeniusz Bodo
📺 Eugeniusz Bodo femulates Mae West in the 1937 Polish film Piętro Wyżej.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Whole Lot of Shaking Going On

My grocery shopping outfit!
My grocery shopping outfit!
Two days out as a woman in the same week was a rare and wonderful experience. And it will take more than one blog posting to tell you all about it, so bear with me.

Before I get into the details, I want to mention how supportive my wife has become. She does not bat an eye when I tell her I have plans as a woman. Although she still can't get over the time and effort I put into my femulation, she heaps praise on me when I show her how I look for each outing. And so it goes.

Thursday's plans were to have lunch with four trans girls I have known like forever and then do some shopping.

The weather was on the cool side, so I wore the same sweater dress I wore in January when I attended the Prudential Financial dinner.

Lunch was at an old Victorian house that had been converted into a restaurant. I had never dined there, but the other girls have and found that the staff was accepting. The staff treated us respectfully, but I noticed that the other diners noticed us.

You could not help noticing us. All of us are tall and some of us have voices that are decidedly manly.   So any civilian that looked twice could figure us out and many reacted that they did figure us out. Nothing untoward — just a lot of stares and amused looks, but it shook my confidence and I thought about abandoning the rest of my plans and return home.

I reconsidered when I realized that I was so close to the store I had to go to that it would be silly to drive back in boy mode on Friday. So I drove to Shop Rite to buy dog food and a gift card.

Although I was overdressed for grocery shopping, no one paid any attention to me. Perusing the pet aisle, I came out empty-handed because they did not have the brand of dog food I wanted, so I sashayed over to the customer service desk to buy the gift card.

I waited in line while a guy cashed in his winning lottery ticket and then it was my turn. The woman at the customer service desk was friendly and handled my request in an efficient manner without giving any indication that she knew that I was femulating. So I returned to my car with renewed confidence and proceeded to the nearby Stop & Shop to continue my quest for dog food.

No luck at Stop & Shop and no indication that anyone knew I was femulating... I was just an old woman who lived for shoes. Which just goes to show you that passing/blending when out in a group is much more difficult than being out solo.

This Stop & Shop was next door to the roz&Ali (nee Dressbarn) that I frequented when I was employed, so I decided to visit the store, say hello to the sales reps who knew me well and maybe find something that fits.

I walked in, began perusing the racks and the store manager, who I have known like forever, approached me and we got caught up since it was almost a year since I had last seen her. As she asked me if there was anything in particular I was looking for, I saw a dress on display to die for and said, "I love that dress."

She said that she was almost sold out and did not think I had any in my size, but she took that back when I told her I'm a size 14 and sometimes a 12 now. She found a 12 and a 14 and escorted me to the dressing room.

The 12 was a little tight, but the 14 was just right, so I opened my purse and bought the dress that I intend to wear to my high school reunion, if I decide to go as a woman.

Source: New York & Company
Wearing New York & Company (Source: New York & Company)

Bert Wheeler
📺 Bert Wheeler femulating in the 1931 film Peach-O-Reno.

Someday Funnies

Source: Ann Taylor
Wearing Ann Taylor (Source: Ann Taylor)

Paolo Ballestero
Paolo Ballestero

Friday, April 26, 2019

Femulating Film Alert!

Friday, April 26, 3:30 PM EDT on TCM: Peach O'Reno also known as Peach-O-Reno, a 1931 pre-code film in which actor Bert Wheeler femulates rather convincingly.

Fabulous 68

Yesterday, I met the girls for lunch and then I went shopping. The weather was beautiful and it was a wonderful day to be out as the woman I was meant to be.

I had not seen two of the girls in years, so we were catching up and I mentioned that I had retired at age 66. With that Lee's jaw dropped and commented, "You are not 66." To which I replied, "No. I am 68."

The consensus was that I don't look my age and I said the reason I don't look my age was because I don't act my age! Ha Ha Ha!

Anyway earlier this week, I was on YouTube trying to find something about one of my radios. In case you did not know, based on your YouTube viewing habits, YouTube makes suggestions of videos you may be interested in viewing and stacks those suggestions on the right side of the browser screen. While looking for my radio video, one of their suggestions caught my eye: 5 Biggest Makeup Mistakes On Mature Eyes Tutorial Over 50.

I thought the technique I used to makeup my eyes worked for me, but I decided to watch the video to see if I was doing anything wrong. Turns out I was doing some things wrong and in the process, I was adding years to myself! Whereas the techniques I used worked wonders on a girl in her 20's, 30's and 40's, they were wrong for a woman in her 50's or above. Since I am well above 50, I paid close attention to the video.

Schellea Fowler hosts a slew of self-help videos for women in their 50s titled Fabulous50s and after I watched her Mature Eyes video, I also watched her Cheeks tutorial.

I was sold on Schellea's techniques and used them when I did my face Thursday morning. I was satisfied with the results and was very happy when I received the don't-look-my-age comments, but I was blown away when I compared recent photographs of me using my old techniques and the Fabulous50 techniques.

See for yourself... the photo on the left was taken in January, the one on the right, yesterday.

Since some of the techniques were new too me, I made some mistakes when I did my makeup yesterday and I did not have time to start all over again. But practice makes perfect and I intend to continue to use Schellea's techniques and view the rest of her videos.

Source: Pinterest
I would not mind being read wearing that! (Source: Pinterest)

Julio Iglesias, Jr.
Julio Iglesias, Jr. femulating Amy Winehouse on Spain's version of the Your Face Sounds Familiar television franchise.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Don't Forget!

The Transgender Lives Conference is on the Saturday. It is the biggest trans conference in the Northeast and I will be there presenting "Out Among the Civilians" between 1 and 2 PM.!

This link 🔗 provides all you need to know about the conference which runs all day Saturday at the UConn Health Center in Farmington, Connecticut.

I hope I will see you there!

Source: Pinterest
(Source: Pinterest)

Grzegorz Wilk
Grzegorz Wilk femulates Amanda Lear on Polish television's Your Face Sounds Familiar.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

On the Fence

At my law school reunion, June 2012
At my law school reunion, June 2012
I have received lots of advice about attending my high school reunion as a woman or not.

The advice is running about 4:1 in favor of going as a woman. Some of you changed your opinion from "no go" to "go" when I mentioned in my second post that my wife was not attending, so I counted you in the "go" column.

Some of your comments follow.
When faced with the opportunity to go to her reunion as a woman, Trish decided, "...that since I haven't transitioned, it would be misleading to go to my reunion presenting as female --- although some of my classmates do know I'm transgender."
For what it's worth, I have almost no contact with my classmates and I am 100% confident that none of them know I am trans.
Katherine wrote, "Other than 'throwing our traniness in their face and in the face of others' what would be accomplished by your attending en femme? You go out in public and are accepted anytime you want to. I think it would be best for 'them' [my family] for you to attend as Stan and continue to be the understanding, compassionate family man that you are and that you write about."
Joe was a "go":
Look at you! You're Beautiful! A 50 year reunion, means you must be around 67 years old [I'm 68]? You look amazing for a woman of your age! I think it would be a crime not to share yourself with your old classmates.
In a similar vein, Faith wrote:
You should just go! Be you. Be out and be proud. A while back on pride, I posted to social media: To all the bullies who used to harass me and beat me up and call me gay, well, you were right. But you were still assholes!
I have seen recent photos of some of my classmates — the girls who would not consider dating me under any circumstances and the guys who bullied me because I was not a manly man. To put it nicely as possible, they are not as well-preserved as I am and I would love to see their jaws drop when they realize I am the "beautiful" stranger attending their reunion.
Stacey wrote, "My wise friend told me that no matter what you do/what you are for that you will always have someone against it and that as long as what you do/what you are for doesn't hurt anyone then who cares what they think or say."
I have not decided whether to go to the reunion as a woman or as Stan. I have over six weeks to decide and knowing me, I will make up my mind at the last minute.

Anyway, I won't bore you with this anymore, but I will let you know when I make up my mind. Again, thank you all for your input.

Source: Boston Proper
Wearing Boston Proper (Source: Boston Proper)

Lee Ingleby
Lee Ingleby femulating in British television's Fairy Tales.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Trump poised to roll back transgender health protections

War on Transgenders Continues

"A proposed rule from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that’s expected in the coming days would make it easier for doctors, hospitals and insurance companies to deny care or coverage to transgender patients, as well as women who have had abortions.

"The administration hinted in a recent court filing that new health regulations could be published as soon as next week. The rule is expected to weaken or eliminate an anti-discrimination provision enshrined in ObamaCare.

"The provision says patients cannot be turned away because they are transgender, nor can they be denied coverage if they need a service that’s related to their transgender status."

Read the rest of the story here on The Hill.

Monday, April 22, 2019

High School Reunion: Further Thoughts

Holiday Inn's infamous high school reunion advertisement
Thank you for all for your advice about attending my high school reunion as a woman (or not). Your comments have given me some food for thought and here is what I think.

I should have mentioned in my original post that my wife will not be attending the reunion. She finds my reunions boring because she does not know anyone in my class and feels that the $75 sticker price is a waste of money as far as she is concerned. So she will not be in attendance (and possibly be embarrassed or pitied or questioned about my presentation).

My sister and I are very close, but she has never supported me with regards to my transness. After I came out to her, she was initially surprised and upset by the news and since then, she has never mentioned it. (Out if sight, out of mind.) So why should I be concerned about embarrassing her if I attend the reunion as a woman? For that matter, why should she be embarrassed since she does not seem to care much about my transness.

So I am seriously leaning towards going as a woman. Like Velma advised, "JUST DO IT! Ten years from 'now,' nobody will remember or care what YOU did; except you. Those that DO remember you will RESPECT YOU for your courage to be YOURSELF."

In a similar vein, Rhonda advised, "Do it - you will regret not doing it." I already have a collection of life's regrets and I don't want to add another one to the pile.

Other Thoughts

My high school was a Roman Catholic high school. There were a handful of very religious classmates, but in general, I did not find my Catholic high school classmates much different than my public grammar school classmates. Probably because most of my public grammar school classmates were also Catholic.

That being said, the Catholic religion is notorious for being transphobic. However, I have found that Catholic civilians are no more transphobic than the general population. How this plays out among my Catholic classmates remains to be seen, but my guess is that they will follow the trends of the general population. And I suspect that my female classmates will be more supportive than my male classmates.

Speaking of my male classmates, I had a lot of friends in high school, both male and female, however, most of the jocks were not among my friends. They verbally abused me with regards to my natural femininity. Showing up at my reunion as a woman will prove that they were correct in recognizing my femininity, but were just very rude in the way they acknowledged it.

Source: Vogue.co
(Source: Vogue.com)

Mart Müürisepp
Mart Müürisepp femulating Nancy Sinatra on Estonian television's Your Face Sounds Familiar.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

High School Reunion

My high school class is celebrating its 50th anniversary the year with a reunion in June. I attended my law school reunion as a woman in 2012. I had a fabulous time and would like to attend my high school reunion as a woman, too, but I am hesitant about doing so.

I have no qualms about facing my classmates as a woman. I am hesitant because I worry about embarrassing my wife and sister. Both attended my high school one year behind me. People in my class know people in their class and you know how people like to talk.

The reunion is in early June, so I have time to decide. I know what I want to do, but I don't know what to do.

Source: Beyond the Rack
Wearing Seeya (Source: Beyond the Rack)

Ready for my law school reunion, June 2012
Ready for my law school reunion, June 2012

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Shaving Legs

Good Morning Stana, 

Hope you're well and it is finally getting warm back East. 

Question??? At what age did you start to shave your legs? Did parents catch on? Smooth skin was a big revelation for me. Stockings on smooth legs is just a wonderful look and feel. Once you shave you can't go back. I had to wait till I moved out and after the Army.

Have a great Day



Hi Bobbie,

Spring is finally springing forth in Southern New England. The daffodils and forsythia are in bloom and the snow piles have finally disappeared.

I was about 16 years old when I shaved my legs for the first time.

I had been crossdressing for about 4 years. Leg hair began sprouting about Year 2. By Year 4, I could not stand the look of matted hair under my nylon stockings, so I took a razor to my legs and removed all the hair from the hem of my miniskirt to the tips of my toes. And I continued to regularly remove my leg hair ever since.

My parents never mentioned it. My crossdressing was closeted, so they never saw my shaved legs en femme and I avoided wearing shorts en homme in the warm weather because I did not want to reveal my secret. When I first appeared among the civilians en femme for Halloween in Year 6, my shaved legs were probably the least of my parent's worries when they saw their 18-year-old son dressed like their 16-year-old daughter.

The first time anyone ever mentioned my shaved legs was when I attended a Halloween party in office girl drag in my mid-20's and the hostess was so surprised that I shaved my legs that she announced it loudly for all the party-goers to hear. I didn't care because earlier at that same party, a female party-goer asked who was the woman not wearing a costume! (She was me!)

Thank you for the great questions, Bobbie.

Source: Etienne Aigner
Wearing Etienne Aigner (Source: Etienne Aigner)

Julian Eltinge
Early 20th Century professional femulator of stage and screen, Julian Eltinge.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Becoming Sheila

Femulate reader Peter suggested this "very nice video featuring the famous Sheila Wolf." I agree it is a very nice video and I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did.

Source: Boston Proper
Wearing Boston Proper (Source: Boston Proper)

Christian Clavier
Christian Clavier femulates in the 1982 French film Le père noël est une ordure.