Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Love and Loneliness

"I've looked at love from both sides now"....   Joni Mitchell.

Down on the seawall in my town, a few blocks from where I live, the benches that look out onto the ocean have plaques attached which commemorate loved ones that have died.  They benches are often decorated at this time of year.  And the short commemorative messages can be touching.  "In loving Memory"  "Til We Meet Again"  .  Like the seawall that they adorn, these messages are a human attempt to hold back an Ocean.

Last Night I was thinking about that sad ocean of time  where everyone I have loved will die, or I will die.  or before any of that love itself dies.  

And the latter, the death of love in life is I think the saddest of them all, and there are no benches to commemorate it.  

And yet, love is such a crock that every year  millions of people fall in love with what? and then fall out of love when they discover what was not.

I have been blessed with love, and cursed by love.

May the New Year bring you as much love as you can bear.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Good News from Oregon

The West is the Best.  Get here and we'll do the rest.   

Long time no blog.   The state of the nation at times looks bleak, particularly after this weekend, and the usual political gobbledy gook that followed.

But Reason and Truth still hold sway in parts of America.



Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Happy TDOV!

"See me, Hear me, Touch me, Feel me".   Tommy   The Who

Well maybe not so much touch me or feel me, unless you ask real nice.  Anyway it is the International Transgender Day of Visibility.   I have disarmed all my cloaking devices.  I encourage all my brothers and sisters to do the same.  Those who are living under deep cover...  Well I certainly understand and sympathize.  May the day come when we can all be visible, in every aspect of our lives.

Love to All


Friday, February 27, 2015

I Just Got Ma'amed in Guy Mode

Is that you baby?  or just a brilliant disguise?"      Brilliant Disguise   Bruce Springsteen

I got Maam-ed today on my way into the supermarket while in guy mode.   For me, guy mode is jeans, sneakers, etc.  Nothing remarkable about it.  This happens periodically in the last few years, and is mostly I think due to jewelry, longish dyed hair, etc.  the subtle and unreliable cues.  I of course am always delighted by it, even as the speaker (particularly if I speak to them), becomes apologetic, if they perceive that they have made a  terrible mistake in the bi-gendered world we live in.    
I have made a study of this, and can reliably suggest a point system by which these occasions can be scored.

If the individual who Maam's you is an elderly man, (like today), then you only get 2 points.

If the individual is a middle aged man or a middle aged or older woman,  You get 3 points.

If the individual is a young man,  you get 4 points

If the individual who Ma'am/s you is a young woman,  you get 5 points.

If you are Ma'am-ed, while with a woman or group of women,  then you must deduct 1 point.
If you are Ma'am-ed, while only a partial view of your whole form is available, for example if you are addressed from outside of a car.   then you must deduct 1 point.

For example  a couple of weeks ago I was sitting at a bar with my daughter and her mother.  A woman who had been a little boisterous and who we didn't know,  greeted us upon leaving by saying "Goodnight Ladies"   That is 2 points.  

Another example.  It was some time ago, that a young woman called me a "cunt"  when she pulled up beside me, having perceived me to have made some terrible error in driving.  (You need to understand that I live in New Jersey, and so behavior like this is part of the social graces.)   This is 4 points.    I thought to give additional points for derisive comments, but this would give New Jersey residents an unfair advantage in  scoring.  Anyway,  if the person calling me this had been a man with a british accent, then no points would be awarded.  The form of address must clearly be one that is unambiguously gendered.

An obvious rule is that you must consider yourself to be in guy mode, and not in guy-ish mode.  I think those to whom this rule applies know what I mean.

The scoring system is based upon my own experience of how often I have been "miss-gendered" in the past few years.   I think it represents fair scoring, but your experience may vary.

Get with your friends and begin to play.   Let me know if you are scoring regularly, or have an unusual situation that you are unsure how to score.  

Prizes?  You wish.   The game is its own reward.

And remember...  Pink Lipstick disqualifies you from guy mode.  Unless, it is from last night, and you just forgot about it.  

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Stuck in the Middle

“I could not become anything; neither good nor bad; neither a scoundrel nor an honest man; neither a hero nor an insect. And now I am eking out my days in my corner, taunting myself with the bitter and entirely useless consolation that an intelligent man cannot seriously become anything, that only a fool can become something.” 
― Fyodor DostoyevskyNotes from Underground

Can you be?  Stuck in the Middle that is.
I mean it used to be Boy or Girl.
You are what you are,
Lately it is more like Boy or Girl,
Pick one.

I began this blog many years ago concerned that Belinda, a shy girl in a dark closet needed a voice.  Now Belinda has more friends than Bill, and the two share this one skin.   So the way I live my life is to be Belinda with Belinda's friends, and Bill with Bill's friends and family.  But what does that mean?
Clearly I dress differently, and I am told I even speak differently, but that is not so conscious.  Bill can't un-dye Belinda's hair, and frankly he doesn't want to, because Bill is not your normal boy.  Belinda isn't your  normal girl either, but don't tell her, because she is sensitive enough as it is.
And so I am not transitioning, and I am not de-transitioning.   What probably doesn't work for society works for me.  Or at least sometimes I can convince myself it does.
 On the other hand, I understand that the game needs sides, and there is a clock that ticks.  I am not a 20 year old genderqueer, youth calling myself zhe, and gleefully declaring "Fuck the gender binary!"  No I am not that by a long shot.  In fact, I  love the gender binary, or to be specific, I love femininity, and that implies a love of masculinity, though a slight case of gender dysphoria, more a flu than consumption, prevents me from declaring so.
So what does one do, stuck in the middle.   Live openly and honestly, if you can, and remember to put away the white outfits after labor day.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Holiday Greetings

OK so I am admittedly a little late.

I wanted to point out a fine article on my friend Ellen's finishing school for Transwomen.


In the article I am described as dressing tastefully!  The young reporter who did the piece is both perspicacious and gracious.

Ellens website is.  http://www.lefemmefinishingschool.com

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Trans and Gentle Meditation

"Everything you do is irresistable, Everything you do is simply kissable..."  
Why Can't I Be You
The Cure.

One fact of life that I have been taking to heart lately is that we learn about ourselves, in much the same way that others learn about us, or we about them.  We observe their behavior, and then make inferences about their character and identity by linking what we observe to the "facts" about human behavior that I have acquired from my family, friends, education and culture.   When the actual facts are missing or distorted, I am likely to misunderstand myself.  I don't have a special window into my own soul.
Thus when I inexplicably took an interest in my mother's underwear at the tender age of 12 or 13, I had nowhere to turn but books, since I had no other source.  (I wasn't about to ask my mother, or my father.  I didn't need to read a book to understand that this was not normal, and best kept secret for the immediate future.  The books that I found were one's like Krafft Ebing's Psychopathia Sexualis.  Such books taught me that I was a budding fetishist with little hope of a cure.  Even though I was not to masturbate for many years,  I accepted the designation, I had no other source of information.  Now fetishist was / and for the most part still is a depressing term.  Somehow your sexuality got screwed up due to some early sexual experiences.  It is easy to assume that the perverse interest I took in mom's panties and slips, was both the cause and the expression of my fetishism.
Today of course there is abundant information about such things.  A hundred stories are shared on the internet.  A teenager need never leave their bedroom to acquire more knowledge about being trans, than I acquired in my first 50 years of life.
Now looking back, I can see the arc of my fate.   Regarding myself as a heterosexual male with transvestite tendencies,  I like most of my contemporaries pursued happiness as I understood it.  I hid my vices (transvestism, masochism) and launched forth.  In retrospect,  there were signposts that might have given me pause.  While I had a number of girlfriends that I enjoyed "making out" with,  I was a virgin until I was 20, and only first masturbated when I was 17.  An Irish Catholic perhaps I had no opportunities?   Not quite, I once spent a night with a married woman whose husband was in Vietnam, a sort of arranged date when I was 18.  I was unsuccessful in popping my cherry.
I simultaneously understand now, that my secrecy regarding my femme inclinations destroyed my first marriage, and yet I can forgive myself now understanding that my story is all too common for transgender individuals of my generation.  I have met individuals with similar stories by the dozens, once I found the internet, and the means of meeting my own kind.
Now I can acknowledge that I was always transgender.   My very physiology indicates problems with androgen in the womb.   I slowly over the years changed the arc and arrow of my sexuality to feminize it.see this for example
I am thankful for learning what I have learned about myself, if envious of the young people who learn it so much younger.
We all need to be humble though.  Our knowledge of ourselves and the human condition is limited by the thick walls of culture, and  the fog of ignorance.   I still struggle with the simple distinctions.  Am I transsexual?  I took hormones and contemplated more dramatic steps towards transition before illness disrupted those plans.   Am I a very repressed homosexual?  Certainly I have dated and slept with a few men in the last few years.    It is coming down to accepting that I will never be sure about what choices I might have made in a hypothetical life, or what those choices would have meant.  At any rate, my children are grateful that I soldiered on.  At least they say so.   And I am awfully fond of them.