Monday, February 10, 2020

My First Emulation-Worthy Femulator

As a young femulator back in the mid-1960s, I did not have any femulators to emulate.

On the big screen, there were Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in Some Like It Hot, but they dressed in 1920s flapper styles – an attractive style, but difficult for this young girl to emulate during the Jackie era. 

On the small screen, Milton Berle made an occasional appearance en femme, but his femulations were strictly for laughs; they were clownish and often ugly – nothing this girl wanted to copy.

The New York newspapers occasionally had ads displaying professional femulators at Club 82 and I so wanted to dress in showgirl drag like the girls at 82, but let's be practical.

There were no femulators that dressed like women dressed in the mid-1960s... no one I could look up to for inspiration.

Finally, one evening watching television in 1964, I saw a great femulation of a mid-1960s woman on a new episode of The Munsters – of all places! In that episode, character actor Cliff Norton played a cop who disguised himself as a woman (see photo) in order to trap a guy who was accosting women in the park at night.

Norton's femulation left an impression on me for a very long time. He was not a beautiful woman, but he passed and more importantly, he was dressed like a mid-1960s woman in the styles I knew and loved and wanted to wear.

(Danger, Danger, Will Robinson! This post is a rerun!)

Source: Rue La La
Wearing St. John

Wilson Cruz femulating on a 1997 episode of television’s Ally McBeal


  1. Love the Bunny Girl. Whilst I loved all visible femulations when young, all I wanted to be was, and still is, a woman who doesn't turn heads for the wrong reason when out in public. My ex, now friend, supporter and occasional clothes provider says that I should spend most of my time in trousers. But why? There are still enough women wearing dresses or skirts and tops to give me authenticity. So for me the role model was always a tall woman, young or old. So at well past 60 how to transition to an elegant, white haired and chic woman? I see enough of them and envy their looks

    1. Our 'group' has a number of 'over 60's' (me included!) and one 'over 80's'.
      The two most notable examples are Stana and Rhonda.
      Just do it.
      Times a wastein'! (Quote from Snuffy Smith, when being persued by a wild boar, named "Ol SNORT").
      When I am in Velma mode, the women who encounter me peg my age at 46. Quite a rush!
      Dont die with regrets.

    2. Thank you Velma,
      My favourite beautician where I go for waxing days that I look mid-sixties. My ex, my age, wants me to have the hair of a 55 year old. Yes, I'd love to be 55 or 35, knowing what I now know, but we can't go back, so I have to find the look that keeps me elegant, ensures that I'm not mutton dressed as lamb AND makes me happy and comfortable. My girl friends don't wear girdles, but I do for obvious reasons, but They add to the sense of "comfort".
      I would like to go back to, say the 20's and have pictures; to go back even further and be an Edwardian lady, corseted and in layer after layer of clothes, but really modern women's wear is so comfortable, there is no real choice. Though, by preference I'll stick to skirts!

  2. I remember vividly how Cruz had the legs to rival the other women on Ally McBeal! Plus the whole deal was handled with care as I remember.

  3. I have about ten years on you, Stana. While I didn't feel as if I were a girl in a boy's body, I was very drawn to wearing female clothing. My "source" of information was Confidential Magazine, which regularly had articles about crossdressers and people who had sex changes. And there was good old Milton Berle in his vaudeville drag. But I considered him just another clown -- there were at least two "lady" clowns with the Barnum & Bailey Circus -- so I didn't take him seriously.But there were the occasional appearances of Female Impersonatore on TV variety shows. I remember T.C. Jones on a couple shows and a couple fabulous blonde "twins" on another show. Few and far between.

    I used to be "a tourist in my home town" and spent tons of time going into DC to The National Mall and wander through museums and public buildings. We used to be able to just walk into The Capitol building and watch Congress and The Senate "in action" -- back when they used to get things done. One of my routes into town was by bus, which went down 9th Street to The National Archives. Apparently 9th Street was once Washington's "Broadway", but only two of many theaters were still there. Ever since my dad took us to see The Great Ballentine's magic show at The Gayety Theater I always looked that way when the bus passed it. That was when I saw posters that reminded me of photos from Confidential. I got off at the next stop and went back to the theater and saw posters of Female Impersonators advertising The Jewel Box revue. And, as I've written here before, this 13-year old went to see his first REAL female impersonators, and became a lifelong lover of Drag show. I was very lucky to have grown up adjacent to a large city where I might actually have access to people like me, who dressed in women's clothes. I had no idea about bars with Drag shows, but in just a couple years I sure found out!

    I was with a computer services company that gave me a job taking data to their NYC computer site to run jobs that ran 24-36 hours. I had to check in periodically, but then I had lots of free time -- and I often used that time to see shows at the 82 Club. So while you were looking at the ads, I was there gawking at those beautiful ladies, just a few feet from mu table.Had I been truly a woman in the wrong body, all this exposure would certainly have pulled me over the edge.

  4. Ted Bessell sparked my interest in an episode of "That Girl" as Marlo Thomas boyfriend he went under cover to catch purse snatchers.

    I thought to myself, I could do that

  5. The trope of dressing in drag to catch a criminal is an old one. I remember it from Mr. Belvadire and Gimme a Break.