Personal stories about insight, wisdom, consciousness, and responses to the conditions of life.
To tell this whole story has taken me nearly 20 years. I am bit a minor actor in it, but I proudly accepted the role of one of the storytellers. In 1995, Vigil was published at the website ftmInternational and it was there for many years. It is not anymore. 20 years was published on New Year's eve of 2013, twenty years after the the bodies were found.
The whole story is lengthy, but I hope you have time. The movie version was somewhat lacking in actual facts. The tabloid version didn't even come close.
Today's offering was written shortly before the Christmas of 2008. Let me stir yor memory jut a bit by reminding you that President-elect Obama had chosen to have Rick Warren deliver they invocation at his Inauguration, which the LGBT community considered to be a huge slap in the face.
I had been looking for a hook or two on which to hang my weekly Friday column.
The snow was blowing and the wind was howling. It was going to be a dark and stormy night.
I graphic is called Hate 4, from my Colors of Hate series.
I've trundled out my joining tools again. This particular chapter consists of one portion of a diary from early March of 2011...and excerpts from my performance piece, Crossing the Gender Line, which I presented several times at academic venues in Arkansas and also was invited to perform at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL in February, 1995. I can date the various performances by examining the poems included...it was my habit to write a new one for each performance. The excerpts are from the piece as it stood in 1998.
The graphic is entitled Strings. I hope this hits the right notes.
While many of the essays I have written over the years have a footing firmly based in emotions, I have explored the theory of transgender from time to time. Let's face it: some people are not going to accept that transpeople are not just crazy loons unless they have some "solid evidence."
Unfortunately, what people consider to be solid evidence has a wide variance.
In January of 2011 I shared a review of the literature. Since most of "the literature" comes from psychological research, that won't be good enough for some people. Since I live with a graduate professor involved in educating and mentoring doctoral researchers, I'm sure we might disagree on that point.
This literature review is not up to her graduate school standards. I have not included an annotated bibliography in APA style. I'm only a layperson when it comes to psychology.
My actual purpose (and hope) is to get people to read it, especially the people who need the information presented this way. Well, that and making a few corrections so that it properly fits into my autobiography thingy.
I'll get started on the other side.
The graphic above is called Faces.
The main portion of this was written after the inauguration in 2009 and was called at that time, Waiting for what comes next. But I've blended that with a short piece called The lessons are waiting from May, 2008 and a relevant poem/graphic from late 2008.
The graphic is entitled, At the Nub.
Here's another piece from early in 2009. I think it explains clearly why I wrote it, which also shines light on why I first started posting at Daily Kos and how most members first came to notice my presence. There was a coterie of people who were not pleased with that.
The graphic to the left is named Spark.
Although the first portion is written in the first person, it should be obvious that I was not writing about myself.
When I established days and times to provide content at certain websites, I have called those submissions "columns."
Having to come up with that content on a weekly basis has not always been easy. Taking a look at the news events of the day sometimes provides a hook. Sometimes a starting point is found in a diary posted by someone else. But sometimes I just have to go with stream-of-consciousness writing and hope that eventually it all makes sense. I've done several of those over the years.
This one was originally created in February of 2009...and was fueled by one stuff going on in my actual life on campus at Bloomfield College in New Jersey.
I've dragged it out here and am sliding it into my Selected Writings of a Transsexual Woman because of the recent flap about Mount Holyoke canceling The Vagina Monologues, saying they are not "trans friendly." I have no doubt that we transpeople will be castigated for that at some point...even though we didn't instigate it.
In early February of 2009, I was preparing to be in a campus production of VM.
The column produced is on the other side.
The graphic above is named Song.
This is another chapter which I selected for my autobiography, for the Selected Writings of a Transsexual Woman part.
Like many of the others, it comes from the end of 2008. It appears in hindsight that my brain was especially fertile towards the end of my 60th year.
The graphic to the left is named Cracks in the Shell.
The following essay was written in 2010. I'm planning to include it in my autobiography as one of my Selected writings of a transsexual woman. Of course, since that book will be text, links and videos will be eliminated, which will, from time to time, require some rewriting.
The image to the left is entitled Amber Waves.
We all grow up with a vision of what is right and just in this world. Many, if not most, of us grow up with the idea of pursuing "the American Dream". For some that has meant the pursuit, as when it was first enunciated in 1931 by James Truslow Adams, of achieving a "better, richer, and happier life". In his book, The Epic of America, Adams stated it this way:
that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. It is a difficult dream for the European upper classes to interpret adequately, and too many of us ourselves have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position.
Oddly, in view of today's circumstances, Mr. Adams was a banker.
While assembling all the ingredients for my autobiography, I stumbled across many offerings from the past which will undoubtedly not pass muster for inclusion.
One of my favorites, from the end of 2008, is Parables, which cannot be included for reasons both of copyright and technology (It's very difficult to include a youtube video in a book of text).
Part of my reasoning for resurrecting it concerns Mary Cheney's recent public "questioning" of the acceptability of drag...and comparing it to black face.
Why is it socially acceptable—as a form of entertainment—for men to put on dresses, make up and high heels and act out every offensive stereotype of women (bitchy, catty, dumb, slutty, etc.)—but it is not socially acceptable—as a form of entertainment—for a white person to put on blackface and act out offensive stereotypes of African Americans? Shouldn’t both be OK or neither? Why does society treat these activities differently?
I'll first let Matt Baume respond:
Now back to the show...