Thursday, October 31, 2019

Halloween Washout

(Updated Below) I had no plans for Halloween.

Nothing was going on at my former workplace, so there was no reason to go there. And the weather was supposed to be lousy ("Chance of precipitation is 90%”). I did not feel like going out just to be out and have to dodge rain showers while dressed pretty. So my only Halloween plans were to distribute candy to the trick or treaters. (Last year, only two trick or treaters showed up and as luck would have it, they were crossdressed!)

I did have one non-Halloween task to complete from my list of housewife chores: grocery shopping. While I was perusing the shopping list that my spouse had composed, it occurred to me that I could do my grocery shopping as a housewife dressed appropriately for Aldi and Stop & Shop.

The weather forecast sounded better for the morning, than the afternoon, so I planned to get up early and get out of the house as early as possible. To make that possible, I prepared as much as possible Wednesday evening, but it was all a waste of time.

The weather forecast did not do the weather justice. It was so bad that I considered not shopping for groceries at all. But mid-morning, there was a calm period and I made the grocery run in boy mode. The break in the storm was very brief and I was very damp by the time I returned home 90 minutes later.

By the way, I saw only one person in costume (a female employee at Stop & Shop), so I think the weather put a real damper on Halloween and I don’t expect a big turnout of trick or treaters this evening.

UPDATE: The bad weather persisted throughout the day and night. As a result, not a living soul showed up to collect candy, but some non-living souls may have showed up after we went to bed because some of the candy was missing Friday morning!

Source: Veronica Beard
Wearing Veronica Beard

Dave Foley
Dave Foley plays Dave Nelson on television’s NewsRadio attending the office Halloween party en femme.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Blast from the Past

Halloween 2012 was the first of five-in-a-row appearances at work en femme and it almost did not happen. Hurricane Sandy hit the Northeast the day before. As a result, we lost power and I shelved my plans to go to work en femme because of the issues that a lack of electricity can cause. For example, how could I make up my face in the dark?

Needless to say, I was very disappointed, but shortly before bedtime, power was restored and I realized that I could do it after all. And it was probably my best Halloween en femme at work experience because no one was expecting it and I fooled most of my co-workers with my femulation.

For example, when my boss arrived at work that day, I made a bee-line to her cubicle, saying "Happy Halloween" as I entered.

She looked up with a confused expression and it took about a half minute before she recognized me. She was ecstatic. She checked me out and gushed over my appearance.

"He shaved his legs."

"He even did his nails."

"I hate him – he looks better than me."

She took my photo (the photo above) and e-mailed it to some of our colleagues in our other facility. Throughout the morning, she brought people to my cubicle to show me off.

I never saw her act like this before. She was enjoying my femulation as much as I was.

My boss also suggested I play a trick on our president's administrative assistant, so when she showed up, I went into her office and said, "I am the new receptionist and you are supposed to train me."

She was completely fooled. She said that no one had informed her of my training, but she was ready to have at it.

Before it went any farther, I asked, "Do you know who I am?"

She shook her head "no," so I confessed and she was absolutely floored! She confessed that she really had no idea who I was nor that I was a male.

Returning to my cubicle, I heard the voice of a female co-worker who I have known for 16 years, so I paid her a visit.

"Happy Halloween," I said as she looked up without any sign of recognition, then she recognized me. After she stopped gushing over me, she said that when she first saw me, she thought I was a former co-worker woman. She said the resemblance was striking.

At 10 AM, I had to attend a meeting (a "gemba") concerning a new product. I walked into the middle of ten engineers standing in a circular fashion for the gemba, said "Happy Halloween" and they all smiled and took my appearance in stride. A couple of the guys admitted afterword that until they heard my voice, they had no idea who I was.

Another friend asked if he could take my photo sitting in his cubicle. I gladly agreed, he took it with his smart phone, and sent it to his wife claiming I was his new administrator.

After his wife learned the truth, she replied, "“OMG!!!!!!! That is soooooo funny! He looks really good as a woman. I don't want her sitting in your cubicle.“

Five co-workers took my photo throughout the day and graciously e-mailed me copies.

One co-worker said he was "speechless," then added, "You missed your calling... you should have been a female impersonator."

During lunch, I drove to the nearby Lowe's home improvement store to get a replacement part for a piece of plumbing that failed after the storm. I had no trepidation about going to Lowe's and I found my trip very revealing.

Whenever I go to Lowe's or Home Depot in male mode, I have to find and ask a store employee when I need help. Today, I had a male Lowe's employee practically at my beck and call. When he saw me looking lost in the plumbing department, he asked what I needed and directed me to the exact location where the part was displayed. After I found what I needed, he came over and compared it to the old part I had brought along to make sure I got the right part.

That's the power of a short skirt and high heels!  

Speaking of high heels, I wore them all day long (over 9 hours) and my feet felt fine. I guess sitting about two-thirds of the day helped. I did bring flats just in case, but I only put them on when I drove home.

I returned to work, ate lunch and felt tired; the 4:15 AM wakeup was beginning to take its toll.

I visited the two women in Human Resources who knew that I am transgender. The HR woman, who is approximately my age, was enthusiastic and said I looked "great," while the 30-something HR woman acted as if nothing was unusual and said nothing about my appearance.

Another female co-worker I have known forever stopped by my cubicle in the afternoon and said I looked "sparkling." She also commented that I looked better than she ever did even when she went to the prom. She wondered if anyone at work had busted "my chops" and I happily admitted that no one had.

Except for folks stopping by to look and/or take photos, the afternoon was quieter than the morning.

Overall, I had a great day at work en femme. Not a discouraging word was heard; instead, I received a lot of compliments.

Next morning, my boss saw me and remarked, "Thank, God, you're dressed normal today."

I responded, "What's normal?"

Source: Macy’s.
Wearing Macy's

Halloween at work en femme 2014
Halloween at work en femme 2014

Sunday, October 27, 2019

The Non-Civilians

In my previous post, the Femulator slot featured Mr. Phillips, a Colorado Springs high school teacher, who showed up at a school Halloween function dressed to pass. He looked very convincing, perhaps too convincing and my trans-radar screamed “not a civilian.” (Reminded me of a guy who showed up at work every Halloween in very convincing office girl drag!)

Mr. Phillips’ image reminded me of a post I wrote a few years ago about guys showing up for school dressed as gals, who also looked too good to be civilians. Since we are on the cusp of Halloween, I updated and added to that post and present it to you today for your enjoyment.

Whenever Starla sends me a new batch of femulator images that she culled from online school yearbooks, I try to pick out the femulators who are not civilians, that is, girls like us and not one-time femulators dressing up for their school's womanless event.

It may be due to all those years operating the trans radar, but there is something about certain womanless participants who give off vibes that they are in it for the long run. And sometimes, there are other clues that confirm those suspicions.

Such is the case with Sean Caufield (above). She is exquisite! Her hair, makeup and jewelry are perfect. And the extra clues move her out of the civilian realm. For example, her thin eyebrows en femme and en homme and the fact that dressing as a female is her choice for a Halloween costume and is not a femulation for a womanless event. 

And she is not alone.

I always suspect that something is up when a faculty member femulates along with the students like the student-teacher (above), who “shows off his feminine side on Halloween.” Does Miss Waugh's perfect wig, cleanly shaved legs, tailored skirt suit or slingback pumps hint that she shows off her feminine side on other occasions? Just wondering.

I was also wondering about Coach Ed (above), who goes by "Edwina" during her frequent forays in frocks, when she successfully passes among her students.

Then there is Matt Garber (above), who "was the only male student to wear make-up to the junior-senior prom," which begs the question: Did other male students attend the prom wearing prom dresses, but without makeup? (How gauche!)

Finally, there is lovely Phillip Sacks (above), who dared to be different, but my guess is that she is different more often than one day.

Mr. Wallace donned a French maid costume to fool his drama class students at Eisenhower High in Rialto, California. 

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Knowing Smiles

By Paula Gaikowski, Contributing Editor

One of the good things about being 60 years old is that you have an overabundance of life experiences to draw on for self-counseling and for writing in Femulate. I’ve been meaning to write another article for the blog that we all call home, but have been coming up dry. Last night, I remembered an incident from my youth that I think might be of interest.

In 1979, I was stationed at Ramstien Air Base in Germany. Having a week off at Christmas, I took a USO bus tour to Barcelona. These trips are a mix of active military and their dependent families. They are always fun and you make friends quickly while enjoying the tour.

I made friends with an American family and their teenaged son who was only a year or two younger than I at the time. He was a bit of a rock ’n' roller with long hair and we spent an afternoon together perusing record shops in Barcelona looking for rare vinyl records.

On the way back, our tour guide announced a “Topsy Turvy” contest to be held that evening. (We would call it a “womanless beauty pageant” today.) This set off a purr of laughter and a buzz amongst all of us.

One of the ladies riding with us asked me if I’d like to borrow somethings for the contest and I regretfully declined. I would have preferred to dress up nicely and not present a caricature as many would that evening.

The turn out for the event was overwhelming with over 20 taking the challenge and appearing in the contest. Looking back through my eyes as a now experienced femulator, I can see that about a half-dozen of these ladies were ready for the event and had planned ahead.

How do I know they weren’t civilians? The ladies who were pretty and passable had wigs and wore shoes and dresses that fit. The spur of the moment gals presented your typical guy in a dress – look at me and laugh. The non-civilians shaved their legs – it was not their first rodeo.

The three runners-up were really into it and the crowd, especially the married ladies, enthusiastically applauded and appreciated them. Most memorable was my teenaged friend, who turned out to be every bit the glamour girl. In a black, long sleeved, sequined gown wearing black pumps, his long hair was coiffed and teased and his makeup was perfect with what looked like false eyelashes. I just remember how stunning her eyes were.

We found out that his Mom was a beautician and had competed in pageants when she was younger. She was quite proud of her creation, but it was definitely a team effort with a very willing accomplice. I have no doubt he was a budding femulator as it takes one to know one.

I ended the evening at the bar and after midnight saw him come in with a group of young people who had gone out to the local night clubs. I waved to him and gave him the thumbs up. He gave me a knowing smile and I smiled back – words weren’t necessary, we both understood each other.

This photo, which appeared in Colorado Springs' Wasson High School 2001 yearbook, so screams, “Not a civilian!” (Source: Starla).

Tuesday, October 22, 2019


Hometown, not Provincetown
I just realized Sunday afternoon that Fantasia Fair is this week.

In the past, I looked forward to attending or I was a Sad Sack because I was not attending. In either case, I was well aware when Fantasia Fair was occurring.

Attending this year did not cross my mind, so its dates were not important to me.

After four trips to Fantasia Fair, I’ve seen it all (and I wrote the book about it). The only reason I would attend today would be to see friends and enjoy the town. Few (if any) members of that old gang of mine still attend, so that puts the kibosh on the first reason to go. And the weather typically stinks during Fantasia Fair, so if I want to enjoy Provincetown, I would pick a better time of the year weather-wise to visit, so that puts the kibosh on the second reason.

And so it goes.

Source: StyleWe
Wearing StyleWe

2018 Fantasia Fair attendees
2018 Fantasia Fair attendees

Sunday, October 20, 2019

A Jane Fonda Night

Thursday afternoon, I drove to my daughter’s apartment in Hartford to attend Real Art Ways’ monthly Creative Cocktail Hour. The cocktail hour began at 6 PM, but I left home at 3:45 because the weather was miserable (heavy rain and gusty wind) and I assumed the traffic on I-84 would be miserable, too. I was correct; the normal 25-minute ride took 45 minutes. 

I arrived at my daughter’s apartment just as the rain let up momentarily, so I was able to dash from my car to her apartment building without getting wet. My daughter and her dog greeted me and we killed time waiting for the start of the cocktail hour talking and drinking (her water, me coffee).

Wearing a new dress and new hairdo, I asked my daughter how did I look and she said I looked like Jane Fonda. I thought that made sense... a senior woman trying to look younger by wearing a lot of makeup and a youthful hairdo. Anyway, I took it as a compliment.

My daughter has no qualms about appearing with me en femme in public, but asked me how should she introduce me if we met up with any of her friends. I suggested “Aunt” or “friend.” She preferred Aunt and that settled that.

At 6 PM, we walked to Real Art Ways and found a small crowd already in attendance. We immediately encountered one of her friends, a woman who worked there. I hung back as the two exchanged greetings and then the woman looked at me and said, “You look beautiful.”

I held out my hand and introduced myself, “I’m her Dad.”

She seemed surprised, “Nice to meet you. And you are beautiful.”

That set the tone for the evening. I felt like I could do no wrong walking through the galleries and taking in all the art exhibits.

I expected to run into some of my transwomen friends from my old support group. In the past, there might be a dozen in attendance, but not so Thursday night. In general, attendance seemed down. I assume that the weather had a lot to do with it considering thousands of homes throughout the state were still without power due downed trees caused by the storm.  

I did meet up with a new friend, the lovely Christine, who reads this blog. She had emailed me days ago that she might attend after reading that I planned to attend. She did and we did meet up and became new friends.

And I did meet up with Deja, a very old support group friend. We spent a lot of time catching up and it was great to see her again. (My daughter had met Deja at my support group’s annual banquet in 2005, so they had even more catching up to do!)  

Due to the small crowd size, it was not a typical Creative Cocktail Hour. Besides the absence of other transwomen who usually show, I did not see familiar civilian faces I have seen in the past. C’est la vie.

My daughter and I had a great time anyway and we will probably do it again real soon now.

Source: Paige
Wearing Paige Chamomile dress.

To  be determined!
To  be determined!

Friday, October 18, 2019

Tale of Two Dresses

It was a dark and stormy afternoon. I held my breath every time I heard a gust of wind outdoors anticipating a power outage. Thousands lost power in Connecticut, but I lucked out. Nothing was going to interrupt my evening out with my daughter, but I had a close call.

I was ready to leave the house and as I went to the closet to get my coat, I noticed a loose button on my dress. It was hanging by a thread and when I touched the button, it fell to the floor.

This was a new dress and you would think there would not be any problems But it was not the first time that something new had loose buttons, so I sighed and got out my sewing kit.

After threading the needle, I realized I was running late and sewing the button back on the dress was going to make me even later. So I decided to wear a different dress. I peeled off one dress and slipped on another, slipped on my coat, grabbed my purse and went on my way.

Source: Ann Taylor
Wearing Ann Taylor

Bryce Anderson
Bryce Anderson, male womenswear model

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Real RLE

Real-life experience (RLE) is a process where transsexual and transgender people live full-time in their preferred gender identity for a period of time, in order to demonstrate that they can function as a member of said gender. —Wikipedia

I was thinking about my RLE.

The longest I have lived full-time in my preferred gender was when I attended Fantasia Fair for 7 days in 2008, 2012 and 2014, but I discount those experiences because the people who live and work at the site of the Fair, that is, Provincetown, Massachusetts, are aware that the transgenders are in town for the week. Every tall female stranger is a suspected transwoman and nobody passes. How can you have a real life experience in your preferred gender if almost everyone you interact with knows your assigned at birth gender?

Discounting Fantasia Fair as an RLE for that reason also discounts the various three, four, and five-day transgender conferences and conventions I have attended in the past.

That leaves me with my four-day full-time experiences in New York City in 2009 and Hamvention in 2010 through 2019 (sans 2017) and my too numerous to count one-day outings. I consider those my real RLEs.

Admittedly, in some cases, some people knew what was going on because I came out to them, but the majority of people did not know. They may have suspected something was up, but I was just as clueless about what they thought as they were clueless about me.

I do think it is noteworthy that no one reacted negatively to me during my RLEs (a youth in New York City called me a "dyke," but I considered that a positive reaction).

So either (a) I passed as a woman in other peoples' eyes, (b) people suspected something, but were not confident enough in their suspicions to react to the tranny, (c) people suspected something, but respected my desires to present as a woman, (d) people suspected something, but did not care, or (e) people suspected something, but were afraid to react to a crazy transwoman.


In my opinion, my RLEs successfully demonstrated that I can “function" as a woman.

Source: Intermix
Wearing Acler blazer

Jeremi Sikorski femulates Izabela Trojanowska on Polish television’s Your Face Sounds Familiar.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Ghost of Payless

Christian Siriano for Payless Women's Habit Pointed Pump
Me and a lot of Femulate readers miss the recently departed Payless shoe store. Their prices were reasonable, their styles diverse and they had larger sizes that girls like us prefer.

Roscoe commented that Payless is alive and well selling their foot ware on Amazon. Their Amazon brand is called “dexflex” and includes the styles we were familiar with under the Amazon brand. The “Christian Siriano” brand is also available on Amazon. And all the sizes we got used to from Payless are available, too.

Initially, I thought that their presence on Amazon might be permanent, but after perusing what is available, I noticed that various sizes were sold out for various styles. So it looks like Payless may be just dumping their leftover stock there.

I searched the Internet trying to confirm what is going on, but could not find anything. If anyone knows better, let me know. Meanwhile, don’t hesitate; stock up now before the stock is depleted.

Source: Venus
Wearing Venus

Reed Birney
Reed Birney femulating on stage in Casa Valentina.

Friday, October 11, 2019

Femulating Times Three

Corey Rae as a “Hollywood Socialite,” Halloween, circa 1995
To Be Costumed or Not Be Costumed Dept.

“If you haven’t yet transitioned—or even come ‘out’ as transgender—Halloween is a great night to test the waters. A female-targeted costume can offer you the chance to express yourself freely, even if only for the night. Once you have a taste of that world, it might be hard to go back to presenting as the gender you don’t identify with. But perhaps it’ll give you the confidence to be your true self with those around you.”

The preceding is a snippet from a refreshing article by Corey Rae, titled As a Transgender Woman, Halloween Has Always Been My Favorite Holiday.

Believe It or Not, Ripley Dept.

According to The Hertford Reformer (1835), Lady B contacted the police as some of her jewels were missing. She asked that all of her domestic help be interviewed except for her lady’s maid of eight months who she trusted implicitly. The police eventually reported back that the jewels had been found and that the thief was her lady’s maid, who turned out to be an escaped convict and a man!

(From Emily as reported in Wardrobe Wisdom from a Royal Lady's Maid by Alicia Healey)

Another Blushing Bride Dept.

Holly wrote, “I wanted to tell you about my experiences of going to bridal shops.

“About three times a year, I arrange a photoshoot—try and go with a theme. I was having a photoshoot with a photographer who normally does weddings, who suggested I do a photoshoot in a wedding dress and I thought it sounded like fun.

“I initially looked round on eBay for a cheap wedding dress, but any dress I liked the look of was way too expensive. I then contacted a few local wedding dress shops ( I live in Newcastle, UK) to see if they had any sample/end of the line dresses at a reasonable price. I was up front and told them I was male and needed the dress for a photoshoot. All of them were very accommodating and I tried on many. Eventually I found a shop that specialized in retro wedding dresses. She had a really lovely one that fitted and said I could hire it, which I did for £50. She also kitted me out with accessories.

“I did the photoshoot, had an amazing day some photos on my flickr profile (”

(See Holly as a bride in the Femulator slot below.)

Wearing Ollalaa

Holly's bridal femulation