Monday, December 31, 2012

My last visit to the North Country for the year...

Yes, it's that time of year again - where one has to plan his/her late night driving around the number of drunks on the road.

Last year, I had no place to go to for the New Year.  I had broken up with a girlfriend of 8 years, and I had not yet made connections to help deal with the absence of that person in my life.  Mind you, I am much better off not having this person in my life.  But I've discussed that elsewhere - and way too much for now.

This year, I have an invite to a New Year's Eve party - and one at which I can present my feminine persona.  It's nice being able to get one's self dolled up and pretty for a party.  (Yet, I can't blame many natal women for hating the headache of makeup.  It can be a time consuming pain at times.)  But this is not as important as the fact that I have a place to go, friends to be with for this festive night.

But as I think of the old year going out, it has been a period of great growth for me.  Not only did I overcome my fear of being out in the world, but I also opened myself up to new experiences.  There is still a long way for me to go - there are three things I want to take care of this year (in no particular order): Weight Loss, Voice Training (for female presentation), and Permanent Beard Removal (first, via laser).  In regard to my career, I want to have made the full transition into using my new skillset, and be ready to take the certification exam in early 2014.  (And hopefully getting a new position in my firm using the new skillset.)

So... I'll try to get some new pictures at the NYE party for the blog - I want to show off the new dress I picked up a couple of weeks ago.  And to all this blog's readers - have a very Happy New Year wherever you are, and remember:

"Don't drink and drive - you might hit a bump and spill some!"


Friday, December 28, 2012

Choices, choices, choices....

Today was a needed day off from work.  No, I didn't occupy myself by doing anything useful.  Instead, I lounged around all day and didn't get showered until 4:00 pm.  The big first decision was - do I go out in my male or female persona?  Like Meg inferred in a recent post, it's the freedom of choice which is important and not necessarily the choice that's made.  (I'll let my readers guess which persona I went out as - it'll be interesting to see the responses, if any....)

There are a couple of reasons why I have to go out today.  The first is a snowstorm that is expected to come in overnight.  I want to be able to eat without raiding my icebox.  The second is that I'm bored as hell, and have some other errands I can do in addition to seeing a movie at the local multiplex.  And, if I want a third reason, I could use some cash from the ATM down the hill.  So this adds two more choices - 1. What do I want to eat?  2. What do I want to see?

If I still considered myself in a potential relationship, I'd have called up the potential lady in my life and said: "Would you like to have a visitor for a day or so?"  But this is not the case.  As I noted in a prior posting, she decided to pursue someone who broke things off with her and wanted to get back with her.  And I choose to wish the best for her - as being anything more than mildly sad, mildly disappointed or mildly upset would be feeding negativity - something I don't want to do. 

So it's back to choices....  We all have choices about what we do with our lives.  What is important is that we try to make the best ones for ourselves that allow us to treat others as we would want ourselves treated in the same situation.



Thursday, December 27, 2012

A quickie - Something useful for part timers

One of the things a trans person doing a part time female presentation often has to deal with is the headache of covering up beard stubble.  Unless one has lasered or electro'd away the hair folicles, sooner or later the erupting beard will show.

I've played with several techniques, one of them being the use of a orangy lipstick applied to the beard area before foundation is applied.  One problem - one needs just the right shade of red/orange to do a good cover.  Luckily, I've found a theatrical supply store that sells two different brands of beard cover.  Although I'm using RCMA beard cover, the Ben Nye beard cover works just as well.  In a good femulator's makeup bag of tricks, one learns what makeup tricks work on one's face.  In my case, I find that the use of Dermablend concealer (for my foundation) on my mustasche area and the chin area below my mouth (after applying beard cover) goes a long way.  However, one should not apply more than one layer of beard cover/foundation without being very careful - if one uses a second layer, one has to apply both beard cover and foundation to maximize the duration of the illusion of a beardless chin....

If one has dark circles under the eyes, the beard stubble trick will work there just as well. But there is one difference - use only one layer of makeup.  The skin in the area of one's eyes is delicate....

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Christmas Quickie

Today was a nice day with family.  The more I chat with my niece, the more I find out how much our interests are similar to each other - in the arts, that is.  Here is where I can contribute something to her life that her dad can not - an understanding of the arts she loves, and a way to help her grow in this area.  (I also mentioned to my dad that I'm planning on updating my will soon, and that I want to have her inherit my apartment if anything happens to me....)

So - it was a nice holiday, and it'll be back to work in the morning.  I hope that all the readers of this blog had an equally nice day....

Monday, December 24, 2012

Nothing is certain in life....

What is it that they say - "Nothing is certain life, save death and taxes"?  That's certainly true in my life.  I never thought that I'd be "out" when this year started.  And I never thought that I'd have had a conversation with a woman regarding where were going with our relationship, much less having things end on account of something other than me being trans.  Even with family, until late this afternoon, I had no idea of where I'd be spending Christmas day - if my brother and his wife had started arguing again, I'd have skipped the party and cooked my own holiday dinner - stuffing and all.  But things have firmed up for now, and I'll be trekking out to my brother's place sometime tomorrow for dinner. 

Right now, I have everything I need, including a few luxuries of life: food, clothing, shelter and employment.  But I'm hoping that the people really important to me can have some peace in their lives.  This is my Christmas wish for all....  And with that being said, I wish the readers of this blog a very Merry Christmas - and promise that I will have more to say in the upcoming year....

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Last days of Christmas shopping season

This morning, I saw a friend for breakfast.  It was nice to prepare for going out, applying my makeup, picking out accessories, and then putting on a sweater and skirt combo.  I've said it before, but I could easily get used to doing this every day.  It may be more work to prepare to go out in a female presentation, but it feels much nicer this way.  My friend and I talked of many things at breakfast, but next time, it'll be "my brother" who comes for breakfast.  (I don't mind this.  In the back of her mind, I think she wants to make sure that I'm seeing her for her sake and not for an excuse to get dressed.) 

Afterwards, I ended up doing a little shopping and a lot of driving.  Basically, I didn't have anything important to do around the house that couldn't be delayed, and I enjoyed enjoying a sunny day outside. Other than beauty aids (makeup, sponges, etc.), I didn't buy anything.  It always pays to have extras for critical supplies one may need to use as part of the preparation process.....

Well, enough for now.   I have to change into drab mode, and pick up my prescriptions and my laundry....

Problems go away by themselves...

In business, like politics, the wisest thing often is to push problems down the road (into the future) and hope that some other unfortunate soul gets stuck dealing with a problem.  However, this is not often the case in real life for the rest of us.  But in my case, I dodged an uncomfortable situation by doing just this....

As I mentioned in an earlier blog entry, over the past year, I have been non-comittally dating a woman.  During the summer, for lack of better terms, she told me that she felt like she needed space (she wasn't getting the chance to see family, etc.) and I backed away, letting her initiate contact.  I felt that it was her way of breaking up....   Well, within two months, things were back to "normal" and she initiated another conversation regarding our future.  So at this point, I figured that I should prepare her for my conversation, telling her about this persona. 

I had set a deadline for year-end when I'd tell this woman about being trans, and see what happened.  Well, she made things much easier for me.  There was another man in the picture, someone who dumped her earlier, that renewed contact - and she didn't know what to do.  I said that if her heart is telling her to go to him, that is what she must do.

So I'm free of the burden of telling her anything.   Even if she wants another chance with me, I'd never be able to feel fully comfortable with her again.  Part of me is sad, and another part of me is very glad and relieved.  Here was a problem that took care of itself, in a way that could be expected, but not predicted....

But I learned one important thing - if another woman and I start getting intimate, tell her early on about this side of me.  It will certainly help me avoid a lot of angst.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Friendships

It's nice to be able share this persona with my friends - especially during the Holiday season.  Several times, I've been able to share shopping expeditions with these friends, as they look for things they need, or for gifts they will be giving to their families.

Now, there is a certain thrill for me in going out en-femme.  But the more I do it, the more it will seem natural to me, and not be so thrilling.  Yet, it will still give me pleasure.  With this being said, the people who are accepting this second persona of mine are also the ones who are showing that they care for me no matter what. And isn't this what all trans people want when they take their first steps out in the world?

One nice thing about this blog is that it has introduced me to new people.  We have our discussions, and I learn new things from these people while they learn new things from me.  It is a subset of the larger society.  And it is a subset that is more sensitive to the roles we play and the roles expected of us.  Most importantly, it is a subset of the larger society which is gradually gaining acceptance by being part of the society, and not separate from it. 

When first timers go to events like Fantasia Fair, they often may not know what to expect.  I was lucky to have braved being "out" before attending this event.  So the fears and worries about being en-femme in a safe place were non-existant.  And yet, I still had to become comfortable being out in the world - I was still taking baby steps.  This is an essential part of being "out" - not everyone can just say "I'm Trans" to the world, they have to start slowly until they have built up steam....

I find it hard to believe how lucky I've been - my friends accept me, and I present well enough to be accepted as female (I don't want to use the word "passing", because even natal females don't always get recognized for who they are.)  Does this mean I'm an expert - no.  But it means that I'm moving forward.  And for that, I'm grateful....

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Looking forward to tomorrow....

All these opportunities to go out in the world, and I'm taking advantage of every opportunity I can get.   Tomorrow, I'm supposed to see a friend who knows both sides of me.  So I asked her - do you want to see the brother or the sister?  And she's happy seeing either persona.   I like that!!!!

2013 will likely be a year of greater stress for me - the project I'm managing is late due to factors outside my control.  (My former boss dealt with the same problems with the same cast of characters and said - it's not me, it's the insanity of the people I deal with.)  The two computer systems on which I built a career are being retired.  And no new positions are being opened up in our firm's NYC offices.   So you can guess why I worry....

But I try to live in the here and now, and try to get out in female mode as much as possible.  This brings me great pleasure, as I feel like the kid in a candy shop.  Eventually, this euphoria will ebb, and the day to day feelings of simple comfort will take its place.  When this happens, I'll again focus on the things I need to do for my future - a little bit of networking, a little bit of course taking, and getting my educational certification.  (I will not identify it here, as I do not want this persona to interfere with me being able to get a job with this certification.)  And hopefully, I'll be able to keep a position which allows me to indulge my female persona with the fashions I like to wear....

But enough said in that area.  On another blog that I follow, I saw the blogger in a beautiful patterned dress.  You can guess what I'll be looking for in one of my future shopping expeditions!  Until then, I'll just have to make do with the wardrobe I have - and am very grateful to be able to wear it....

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

A quickie on a day off....

My car made it to the shop this morning, and $326.00 later....

There is one reader of this blog who had the misfortune to be stopped by a policeman while en-femme.  Having had cars break down on me while far from home gives me a healthy respect for the "check engine light' on my dashboard. And the last thing I want is to be en-femme when a preventable breakdown (or worse) occurs.  So it was off to the shop today, and into NYC tonight for an interesting presentation on managing the construction of the Second Avenue Subway....   (No, I will be en-homme for this event.)

For me, I intend to be open about my trans nature as much as possible, except when dealing with work and family.  I will always have a couple of friends who will not be able to accept this side of me - one of them having his own problems with a sister who may be transitioning to malehood.  Yet, I want to be noticed as trans as little as possible.  I don't want to be seen as someone special when en-femme (being a trans person) - and why should I?   So this poses a question - how does one best manage masculine and feminine personas so that one's everyday interactions with people do not stand out as anything special, except when they are truly worth considering as something special....?

More shopping

I'm glad it's Christmas time, as I can go shopping for myself and know that the extended sizes will be available in the department stores.  Tonight, I wanted to pick up a few things: (1) a pair of booties, so that when I eventually am wearing leggings (and am properly tucked) that my feet can be more comfortable than in the boots I've been wearing, (2) Tights, as it is hard enough to find them in a size E or F., (3) a white blouse (us T-Gals can always use more than one of these), and (4) some shapewear (I don't want to risk "Mr. Happy" being detected because he is too loose....)

Hopefully, I'll lose some weight by the time I take my next vacation.  Like Kim, I'd like to be able to fly en-femme, and stay in this persona throughout a vacation.  But the time I do get to spend this way makes me feel good....  And I know this feeling does permeate into my male persona.

Tonight, I've passed a link to this blog to one of my friends who knows about this side of me.  I wonder what she'll think after reading the blog.  It'll be nice to have a person who has known me for over 16 years be able to comment....

Monday, December 17, 2012

Another Quickie - on a serious note.

The TV news is very depressing today.  The first of the children killed in the Connecticut massacre were put to rest today.  There are no words for this, but I know no one who is happy.  There will be a cloud over that community for years.  I just hope that with time will come a sense of peace, and an easing of day to day pain, that the parents, families, and the community at large will experience.  Sadly, this is the big news of the day, and I can't bear to watch it.  So, I have a war movie on right now.  Even with death, there is less pain in seeing a film about a battle that occurred 70 years ago, than to focus on the lives just lost.

My advice to people is to be leery of any statement made by a politician or "talking head".  Right now, they are playing to show how important they are.  They want to show that they care about the problems at hand.  And they will, as usual, be just as ineffective as they and their predecessors have been over the years.  If you're angry - wait a while until you're calm.  And then try to view what happened through the eyes of our "opposition".  Maybe you'll come away with an understanding of their fears.  And if so, please ask yourself what you could do to ease those fears.  We need dialogue to form good laws to deal with our problems, and only by honest dialogue can we move forward....

A quickie to start the work week....

Yesterday, I went shopping at the local supermarket.  This wouldn't be a big deal, except that I was en-femme.... 

I've been en-femme at my local supermarket before, but this is not really that important.  But I never noticed anyone who I knew at the supermarket while I was in a skirt or dress.  So I was pleasantly surprized to be next to be one of my neighbors without her noticing who I am.  I guess that I am passable enough (in passing, or should I say in a brief encounter) not to be noticed as just an anonymous female.

I wonder what she'd say if she knew it were me....?.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Out shopping

I went out shopping with my friend today, and it was fun to be shopping with her en-femme.  Of course, she gave me some hints on what would look good on me, and what I should look for in the sizing of clothes.  I'll depend on her as I flesh out my wardrobe - she has good taste, and there's much I can learn from her.  Today, she gave me a wool coat that was too big for her.  Heck, it's getting easier for me to flesh out this wardrobe every day - and I'm receiving a lot of good stuff without paying for it.  I wonder when I'll have to say "NO" to putting more clothes in my closet.

After lunch, I wanted to make a run up to another store to do some shopping.  However, the "check engine light" came on, and I figured that it would be wise to stay near home, to be safe.  So I ended up going to the laundromat to pick up my clothes, and to say goodbye to the lady who has been doing my laundry for a while.  I'll miss seeing her....  At least I have her address, so that I can send her a gift in celebration of the baby inside her womb....

 


Another Day, Another Outing

It's nice to be able to relate my thoughts about going out in the world in this blog.  It makes things much easier for me, as I have a place to communicate my feelings about going out in the world without boring my friends out of their minds....

With this being said, I'm going out with one of my closest friends today.  First to go for Dim Sum (or something like it), and then to do some Xmas shopping.  Of course, it will all be done en-femme. It feels very good to be able to go out with her as a girlfriend, and not as a straight version of a gal's "gay best friend". (This is the same woman who would live with me as sisters, if she were to outlive her husband - a man who I hope lives a long life.)  And I'm starting to sound like a real female when I'm starting to say "I've got nothing to wear" when my "Girl" closet is full.   (If only my late wife could see me now - she'd chuckle about me experiencing many of the same clothing dilemmas that she did years ago.)  Now if I could only get the energy to get out of my jammies and take a shower.  But that energy will be there by the time I have finished this blog entry.

Shifting subjects....  I was on the train yesterday afternoon, going to meet a friend in NYC.  Towards the end of the ride, a nice looking lady started a conversation, and we had a nice time chatting about things in general.  At the end of the ride, I mentioned my love for San Francisco, and wanting to become part of the human granola of the city (fruits, flakes and nuts).  Then I sprung two pictures on her - which made her day.  First was a provincetown picture of me in a LBD.  After that was the "Star Trek" picture (2 TGals in the loo, boldly going where no man has gone before).  I made her day!  She couldn't believe how good I looked. (The train then made it into the station, and we parted to our own destinations.) So, I then met the woman I'm seeing, and continued prepping her for this side of me.  (She knows I go to monthly parties with polyamorous friends in the North Country who accept me flying my "freak flag" - next is to let her knowing what that "freak flag" is.)  So far, she hasn't gotten antsy when I mention that I have an unconventional side.  Now if only I could figure out what to get her for Xmas....

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The North Country

Last night, I drove to upstate New York to attend a pot luck supper with some polyamorous friends I know.  No, I am not a practicing poly person.  But I am curious to what it is about, and find the people very interesting.  Additionally, they accept me being there en-femme.  In fact, one lady commented that she doesn't remember how I look en-homme, as I only visited that way once - in a hot summer, where wearing a wig was very impractical.


Now, I don't like how this picture turned out - I looked better than this picture would have you think.  But it does illustrate a problem I have.  I'd like to get glasses with frames which help shift focus in the area near my eyes, so that my deep sunk eyes will appear less so.  (In short, I need glasses as a prop - except when reading books....)

But looking at myself in the mirror, I noticed that my beard was growing faster than it did during the summer.  When I see my doctor next, I'll ask him whether facial hair grows faster in the winter.  It won't help me much (I need laser and electro), but it will help me determine how long I can stay out before a refresher shave/makeup session is needed.

In the morning, I expect to go shopping with a GG friend.  If I'm lucky, I'll have some news to report then....

Unexpected events

What can I say about today in light of what happened in a Connecticut school?

I am a strong second amendment supporter.  Yet, even I shudder when I hear of massacres such as what happened today.  There will always be a tension between the individual's right to keep and bear arms, and the community's right to make itself safe from madmen and criminals.  And I see no good way to ease this tension without surrendering constitutionally guaranteed rights - something that I rarely support because I don't trust the government to protect us in time of need.

Since none of us have the full facts in the hands of the police, I'm holding off doing much serious thinking about this incident until we have had some time to digest the facts available to us.  This is the big question I'd like to have answered - is there a way to prevent madmen from getting firearms without meaningful interference in the gun enthusiast's right to enjoy his/her guns?  Please note that I do not now address issues such as the number of guns an individual should own, what limits should be set on gun use, etc....  We can never properly address these issues in light of the second amendment. 

One thing I've heard on the "Liberal" news network today was that the killer was the mentally disturbed child of the woman he shot.  The liberal media noted that no amount of reference checking would have picked up this kid had he been of age and prevented him from buying a firearm. The "Liberal" news continued, noting that these incidents are statistically rare, although they can occur in clusters.  In short, there was not much that could be don to protect anyone without the excessive involvement of big government.

So I ask of people to please learn as much as possible about the proper care and use of firearms before deciding what rules to enact regarding the right to keep and bear arms. What people learn might be very interesting and helpful....


Friday, December 14, 2012

Another trip to the North Country

It's nice being able to burn vacation days at year end.  This has allowed me to use several of them to visit friends in the "North Country" for Friday afternoon/evening parties, and still be able to return to have a full weekend with family and friends.  It has been especially useful in enabling me to go shopping for clothes en-femme, as the stores have been less crowded during the work day than after people have left their offices.

Most natal women would love to be able to simplify their clothing options to the level that most men enjoy.  For example, when a man has to get dressed for an office interview, it is usually a simply choice of which suit to wear - everything else he wears is predicated on that choice, and follow simple rules. To get dressed for an informal function, he can pick up a pair of jeans or khakis, and have almost any shirt in his collection go with it.  And for him, there is no such a thing as a choice of foundation garment and of hosiery - the rules are easy to follow.  However, for women, the rules are much more complex.  And for us trans gals, we usually haven't had the luxury of having a female adolescence to learn them.  So many of us make a lot of mistakes, as some trans gals indulge a long held fantasy or two while developing their feminine style.  For me, I did a lot of preparatory thinking, and tried to observe women of my age to determine what options I'd have and what rules I'd need to follow.  This has been a very big help to me, as I've made few errors. 

One female friend commented on my style - it is extremely conservative for a woman of my age.  Conservative was not meant in the sense of being retrograde and behind the times.  Instead, it was meant that I didn't take any chances with my clothes - chances that some natal females might take now and then to grab positive attention.  She went on to comment that my female persona dresses in a way that my male persona would like his mate to dress.  And this point hit home - she was correct!  My male persona is not as well put together as my female persona - not being a "metrosexual", the male persona can afford to be a tiny bit sloppy and imperfect without triggering anything negative in people's minds -   whereas, the female persona has to follow more rules and follow them with more precision.

So, it's back to the North Country again - and a little shopping along the way.  As usual, I'll be carrying a change of clothes - if my "brother" wants to go into the hot tub there, he'll need a change of clothes for the 2 1/2 hour trip home.  There is no way that this gal wants to go to the bother of doing her makeup twice in one day....

Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Shopping

It's nice to be able to go shopping for my feminine persona during this holiday season.  The stores have been reasonably well stocked, and I've found lots of nice stuff to add to my second wardrobe.  But I'm very lucky - I still have a career which affords me the luxury of paying for two wardrobes.

Now, I've been pleasantly surprized to be told by several women that I look better en-femme than I do en-homme.  It's still a shock to me.  But each day that I'm out in the world, I get more confident in my feminine role, that the only things holding me back is a lack of confidence in the use of my voice and the fact that my beard stubble causes me to turn into a pumpkin after a few hours en-femme.  Yet, I'm now told I'm an inspiration to at least one or two people who have only started their process of opening up to the world.  This is also a pick-me-up, as I enjoy helping them perfect their personas for the outside world.

I've had the pleasure to meet three of the bloggers whose out-and-about personas from whom I've gained inspiration.  It's nice to be able to give something back to the community, and I'm glad to "pay it forward".

But I wonder - what are the most important things holding other trans people back from living the lives they choose?  Is there any advice that can be given to help some of these people move forward?  What do you think? .


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Unexpected Shopping

Yesterday, I renewed contact with an old friend with whom I lost contact for reasons other than my crossdressing.  And it was a good thing I did....

Our plan was to have lunch, then to go shopping.  I had a budget in mind - and mostly stuck to it.  And it was fun to have someone with me, handing me things to try on in the changing room.  Since these items were on closeout, I was able to get things at an affordable price.  But what is much more important is that I learned that certain styles of tops or dresses would work on me - I didn't have to wear things with excessively high neck lines to avoid showing that I have no natural cleavage.  Just as important as dressing advice, was noticing something else - my beard shadow is coming up faster than it did a few weeks ago.  It's a sign that winter is coming.  And just as critical, it's a sign that I need to get laser or electro started soon. 

Now, I'll always have a difference in philosophy with this friend.  There is a part of me that knows that I'm doing much better than 90% of the people in this world, and that I could get by (with much effort) if my income stream were to get interrupted.  But the other part of me will always worry about not having enough income to get by, and refuses to spend on things that aren't needed.  And it is a big deal for me to spend any money outside of cash flow.  She'd say that I should rush into getting laser or electro if I'm serious about this style of life.  Where I'd take things slow.  I'm trying to be careful, and not make permanent solutions to temporary conditions.  Is this interest in femininity temporary?  Probably not - I've had it since before grade school.  However, the emphasis on being cautious is still wise.  I've avoided many of the mistakes others have made, and have had an easier time going out in the world because of it.

My friend has another habit that I don't want to pick up on - she has a nasty habit of buying clothes that she wears once, and never wears again.  Guess who inherited some of the better hand-me-downs?  It seems as it once I started getting ready to go out in the world, that my closet started inheriting cast off clothing - some of it useful, and some of it to be given to Goodwill when I get around to it.

The differences in our philosophies even extend into what we want from a relationship.  My friend wants extreme passion in her relationships - what's the point of being in a relationship without being in love?  She wants to be completed by the relationship.  Whereas, for me, I simply want a companion for this trip through life.  No one person can complete me.  But one person can help me feel better, because of simply being around me.  (My therapist has a nasty habit of quoting a Johnny Mathis tune that expresses this feeling better than I can do....)  So, where she has had a lot of bad luck with relationships, I've recently had good luck.  And if things don't work out, I know that I'll have options for the future - as long as I can afford to go out on dates.

Our conversation eventually flowed into sexuality - gender expression and gender preference.  She focused on trying to maximize the odds of finding a partner by opening myself up to same-sex partnerships, not understanding that gender preference is not linked to gender expression.  There was an effective compulsion to fit me into a relationship type, instead of accepting that for someone like me, that I have to meet a lot of ladies before I find those who can accept and tolerate this side of me, much less enjoy it....  Again, if one needs to be completed by a relationship, one will put a square peg into a round hole and wonder why it doesn't fit.  If one doesn't need to be completed, one can wait until the right peg and the right hole are matched - and one can feel better about not being in a relationship.... 

What bothered my friend most is that I could consider a situation posed by another friend.  If this other friend's husband were to pass away (which neither of us wants to happen), she seriously suggested that we live together as sisters as we enjoy the same things in life.  And I'd probably choose this option if it were available to me, though I'd miss the physical companionship of females that I've been enjoying lately....  My friend doesn't realize that many women are choosing just this sort of arrangement in their old age - demographics are against them finding decent men at their ages, and it makes sense to live with friends who can help each other take care of themselves in old age.

So this unexpected shopping trip bought me more insights into myself than I'd have expected.  And it showed how much I've grown in such a short time....

Friday, December 7, 2012

Humming Rodgers and Hammerstein Tunes....

That title sounds a little cryptic, doesn't it?  But it'll make sense by the end of this entry.

This morning, I had the pleasure of seeing a friend of mine who knows about "Marian" while en-femme.  Unfortunately, I was running late, and I had to cut corners in doing my makeup so that I could make it to the diner on time for breakfast.  Rushing wasn't needed - she was five minutes late.  When I asked her about my appearance, she said that I look like a natal female, and my makeup flaws were that of a natal female when rushed.   Over breakfast, we talked of many things.  (For the most part, she was doing the talking - but I was participating in "rapport mode" as a natal female would.)  Sadly, she had to run off to work - but not before agreeing to arrange dinner before the holiday...

After breakfast, I decided to go window shopping at the local mall - and go into the women's departments which I always avoid when en-homme.  It's nice to feel comfortable shopping as a woman, and not feel the awkwardness of being a male in these areas.  Yes, it's just fabric on hangers.  But our culture applies a lot of value to the nature of this fabric and how it is cut/assembled.  And I enjoy browsing through the clothes - even though there's not much I want or need to buy.  (I could always use a nice, simple white blouse.)

When I got home, I saw my nosy neighbor.  (NN from another blog entry)  Although we have important differences, she did say that I looked good (she used the word "passable") en-femme.  She warned me about other neighbors - but I'm not worried about them.  Again - there's not much they can do to me, and I am glad that I'm finally "out".

So when I walked the steps to my apartment this afternoon, I found myself humming a Rodgers and Hammerstein tune appropriate for the day.....  "I enjoy being a girl." 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Another Quickie - Preparing for the weekend

So many things to do, and so little time....

A friend of mine has invited me to any (and all) of her alternate culture events this weekend.  Although I have an interest in these things, I'd simply prefer to see her at lunch and catch up on life as a whole.  I'm going to be busy enough as it is, potentially going into NYC en-femme to do some museum touring.

I'll make some posts later when I know what I'm going to do, or after I've done it....

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Neighborly Chatting

Yesterday was a very interesting day.  But it was interesting for two reasons, only one of them touching on my Trans nature. 

As I've noted before, I'm in the last stages of a career that has kept me comfortably employed for over 35 years.  My primary skillset is obsolete, and though I've gotten training for new skillsets, none of them is likely to provide me with a well paying job.  Luckily, I have saved some money, and have a decent pension that will pay for the basics.  So when my boss's boss announced that he was coming to my office to speak to the 6 of us in our group, we were all prepared for the worst.  And one of the first things he said in the meeting was an effective apology - he realized that his timing and lack of information legitimately triggered thoughts in all of us that we were going to be told when our services would no longer be needed.  He mentioned that this was just a status meeting, and that he didn't want to give anyone the feeling that when he appeared, that it would always be bad news.  This allowed me to breathe a sigh of relief, although I still made a comment or two out of nervousness....

That evening, my nosy neighbor called (let's call her "NN") - someone who previously said that she didn't want to hear from me again.  She called to warn me about a neighbor who should have been evicted long ago, and that this neighbor (who we'll call "MP" for "Miss Piggy") was on the war path for some unknown reason.  After the warning about the neighbor, we got into general chit-chat, and I realized that NN needed someone to gossip with, and to spread rumors.  I did find out that several of my neighbors have seen me en-femme, and I told NN that this doesn't bother me.  It is more important to me that I have the self confidence to go out in the world en-femme, as I no longer want to repress this side of me.

Lots of changes are going on in my life, and things are interesting to say the least....

Now as a segue....

One of my readers and I have had an exchange of emails regarding being en-femme.  I'll bet that the biggest issue for many trans people is that of going to the loo.  What I'd like to find out from my readers is - What businesses, communities, states, and nations have protections for trans people in this area?  There is a web site (safe2pee.org) which has information on this topic, listing places where a trans person will find a safe place to relieve him/herself.  Hopefully, at some future time, sites like this will no longer be needed, as we will have gained general acceptance from society as a whole....

Monday, December 3, 2012

A View from the Trenches

Today, I saw the play "War Horse" at Lincoln Center.  It's kind of fitting that I refer to "Trenches", given that the play is largely about the experiences of a man and his horse during WWI.

First, I received an email from one half of a couple I met at Fantasia Fair.  It's nice to be keeping in touch with people I met there, and am hoping that we can continue to get to know each other outside of the TG community....

Now, I'm going to refer to two ladies by pseudonyms.  I'll call the lady I've been seeing for the better part of a year "Alice", and "Betty", the woman I started seeing when "Alice" said (in August) she wanted more space.  Alice is a nice, vanilla sort of lady who lives in NYC - and we get along well together.  I'm not sure of how open she would be to the Marian side of me.  "Betty" is a professional who lives in the suburbs, and I saw her for the first time in August, but have not had the chance to date her much due to my summer vacation, her schedule, and the late October hurricane. 

At this point, I'm on the horns of a dilemma.  I know I have to tell Alice that I am Trans - we're at a stage where it's appropriate.  (I never thought we'd be at this stage of a relationship when I started dating Betty in August.)  And I have several concerns.  First, I need to know what Alice thinks before I make any decisions regarding Betty.  (If Alice can't handle things, then I don't need to start from scratch with someone new - Betty is still in the picture.)  Next, how do I bring Alice into my other activities with the Poly group who I meet with on a monthly basis?  (Again, I'm not sure of Alice's openness to alternate lifestyles, etc., even though I am not a practicing polyamorous person.)  And lastly, how do I reassure her that I'm the same person she met about a year ago, but I have extra attributes I keep from family and career?

In the morning, I'll be heading off to work, and a higher level mucky muck will be there.  When one of these people wants to meet with us on the first Monday in the month, it's not good.  Usually (from recent experience), it means that someone will be laid off with two weeks pay.  They tell us to pack our stuff and leave - and it frightens me.  With this being said, I think they will tell us how long we have before being laid off - and this kind of change scares the dickens out of me.  I've lived the good life for a long time, and now that Marian has come out, I've really started to enjoy it.  Hopefully, I'll be able to continue this no matter what happens....  God Willing.

ps: please keep your fingers crossed for me.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

A view from the North Country

It's been several months since I was introduced to this circle of friends "in the North Country", and I realized that they have only seen me once in boy mode, and all other times in girl mode.  This wouldn't be so remarkable, save that I also use this trip as an opportunity to go shopping en-femme. And it is a very pleasant thing that when I'm with women in places that men generally have no cause to visit, that I'm being accepted as part of the sorority.

Yesterday, on my way up North, I stopped by one shopping center so that I could do two things - buy a replacement wallet that would more easily fit in my handbag and buy some tights (as I finally found some hosiery that fit me reasonably well). When I was waiting to pay for a couple of pairs of tights, the lady at the register and the lady in front of me were discussing how a short plus sized lady had an option (tailoring clothes, shortening hems, etc.) that taller gals did not have.  I nodded, and was brought into the conversation, when the lady behind the counter referred to me nodding my head in agreement.  And the three of us had a short chat while the first lady's transaction was being finished up.

Interactions like this mean a lot in buinding self confidence.  And it becomes a virtuous circle.  The more I interact with other women as a woman, the more I feel confident in the role, and the more like a woman I become when presnting myself as one.  And this leads on to my next thought....

Recently, I've been having a conversation with one of my blog's readers.  She is at that point where she has to do some hard thinking - What makes her crossdress?  What does she get out of crossdressing?  How far does she want to go?  What are her limits?  Is this an erotic issue or something more at the core of her identity?  You can see the nature of questions I was encouraging her to think about - crossdressing in a half assed way (once one goes beyond androgenous presentation outside "safe" cities and towns) might cause the entire community a problem - the first steps to acceptance are to show the "straight" world that we are just like them - most of us would like to blend into the mainstream.

Now many people might disagree with me on this direction.  They would prefer to cite people like RuPaul, Divine, et.al. as paving the way for us.  But I feel they are wrong.  These people (in drag) are exaggerations of feminity who do this to entertain people as well as express part of themselves.  People like myself and Paula G. (a guest poster on Stana's blog) do this for other reasons - we want to be treated as women, seen as women when we are out in the world in female mode.  I figure that most of us will give off a slight vibe that identifies us as physically male.  But everything else that we cue in others by a reasonably impeccable presentation will have them treat us as women.  Do this long enough and often enough, and we gain acceptance by others gaining comfort in us being part of their communities....  And isnt this a good goal?

Friday, November 30, 2012

Way up North....

This afternoon, it's a trip to "the North Country" to party with friends to whom I was introduced this Summer.  Although I've been out and about en-femme near home, I still feel warmly torards this group of people with whom I feel very comfortable with en-femme.   Given things which might be happening at the office, this might be one of the last times I'm able to see this group without having to budget my money for the trip.  (I won't go into late middle-age career blues here - we all know the problems....)  So this month's meeting will have special meaning to me. 

On the way up to the party, I plan on doing some accessory shopping for myself.  I could use a more compact ladies' wallet, as well as a pair of gloves.  Christmas time is perfect for this kind of shopping.  There is a lot of stock on hand, and at my size, that's essential to finding things that fit in the colors I want most.  Otherwise, it's mail order and hope for the best.

The more I go out in the world, I notice that I have to plan for the little things.  For example, I might end up staying the night at this party, crash on the couch, and drive back en-femme in the morning.  If I end up doing this, I'll have to have a change of underwear, as well as a second set of tights/stockings. So, after laying out what I wanted to wear, I found that the outfit dictated the shoes I'd be wearing, as well as influencing the hosiery I'd need for the evening.  (I wanted to wear boots, but the outfit calls for flats or simple heels.  This means I'd likely want to wear tights, as it gets cold where I'll be.)  It's amazing how tricky dressing appropriately as a woman can get.  As they say, a gal can't have too many shoes.



Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Shopping and Dining....

Today was a day off from work, and as I like to put it with friends - I did damage to my brother's credit cards.  Yes, I had the chance to go shopping!!!

My brother won't mind too much - the shoes were from Payless, Makeup remover from Walmart, etc....  Not much damage to speak of.  But it was fun to get out and be in the stores.   But I did find a wonderful sweater


Although the quality of the image stinks, you might notice the details on the sweater I bought.  The vertical opening is scalloped - it's a great feminine detail, and yet not too frou frou.  I loved this sweater from the minute I saw it.  It will go great with most things I own.

Later on in the day, I met with an ex-girlfriend and her husband for dinner.  They are great people - and I'm very glad that they met each other, as they balance each other so well.  (And I seem to get along with both of them equally well.)  Both friends asked about me being trans and what attracts me to emulating a female.  (Stana, thanks for the word "femulate" that you coined - it's perfect for what we do.)  I was very glad to answer any and all questions they had.  And I had fun joking about myself as well - jokes that would have meaning to my friends, but will not get posted here.

Sadly, because of a communications screw up, they didn't get the chance to see me in female mode.  I'd have loved to be wearing the outfit above when we had dinner tonight.  Well, maybe next time....





Sunday, November 25, 2012

Another Quickie, but from New York....

It's a bitch taking identification, credit cards, car registration/insurance out of a male wallet and moving them to a female wallet.  Too bad that one needs to present Licence, Registration, and Insurance cards if stopped by a policeman.

Where am I going, you might ask?   Well, today, I had arranged to see an old friend who I haven't seen in ages.  She knows about this side of me, and I was halfway to her place when I realized that I didn't have the required documents.  The last thing I needed was to need these items when either stopped by a police officer or in an accident.  Since I hate urban driving with a passion (one has to be hyper alert in city traffic), I begged off the visit while on the way to see her.  She must have been disappointed, and hopefully, we'll be able to get together later in the week, or next week....

How do other trans people deal with this type of problem when shuttling between their male and female presentations?

Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Quickie from Philly

As the Post's title implies - this one will be quick and to the point.

On Friday, I met my girlfriend and went to Philadelphia to explore the city a little.  Well, we stayed at a quaint old hotel, and I noticed something I haven't seen in many hotels - a special makeup mirror with its own light.  This shouldn't mean too much, but to a cross dresser, it's a godsend! 

One person in the hospitality industry commented that if a hotel room is well designed for use by women, it will attract more customers.  Well, for this trans person, I know where I will stay the next time I'm in the "City of Brotherly Love"....

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving Postscript

Turkey day with the family was quite interesting.  No, I didn't out myself to anyone.  But I did find out that my niece is interested in many of the things I'm interested in.  (I can't wait to see the man she eventually brings home to see the family....)  But first....

My niece was a photography major at FIT, and recently finished off all of the requirements to be awarded her degree.  At 23 years old, she has time before she has to be well set in her career, so she's having fun living the bohemian life.  (I wish I had her courage when I was her age.  In many ways, she's the woman I wish i could have been at that age.)  We got into discussing California and the fact that so many of her friends from school have moved out to the Coast.  I started to describe many of the people I saw in San Francisco, and her soul seemed like it wanted to migrate to the Bay Area.

Now, SF wouldn't be such a big deal, but we then started talking about the quirky nature of the town - such as open nudism finally being prohibited from most areas of the city, except during such functions as the Folsom Street Fair.  She picked up on that, as both of us understood what goes on there - and she realized that there is a hidden side of me that hasn't been revealed to the family.  (Right now, she probably thinks it's Leather, and that's fine for now....)  From there, we talked about a hotels in NY (both of us knowing a funky one in the West Village, and she having stayed there one night) and in California (the Madonna Inn, a funky place that she salivated over once I showed her the pictures of the rooms.)  So, she has started to pick up a vibe that there's more to me than the doting uncle - and I wonder whether she'll finally pick up on my invation to find out more....

With all this being said, I had fun reworking the story behind a picture I took with Meg, subtitled with "to boldly go where no man has gone before...."  In my reworking, I suggested that Rupaul and one of his friends be photographed (in drag) in the ladies' loo, and that the phrase be attached to the shot.  My niece and my brother got a kick out of the idea, but little do they know the real story behind the idea....  I hope that someday I can safely tell my niece the real story and show her the photo - she may be the only one in the family who might understand.  But there is no hurry....

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Turducken

Turducken, that wonderful treat from N'awlins (and Cajun country) seems to symbolize my holiday.  With just one bird, things would be very incomplete.  But, add stuffing, seasonings, and two other birds, cook it for a few hours, and you have something special and rich for gratitude is easy to show.  And this is how I feel today.

Several years ago, I was stuck in a dead-end relationship with a woman who was destroying my self-esteem to preserve a codependent relationship.  I was gaining weight, and dreading each holiday that came.  It was as if an albatross was hanging around my neck, and there was no way out.  Last year, I chucked that albatross (with the relationship), and all began to change.

This year, I was finally able to let the "Marian" side of me come out.  I felt freer than I have ever felt in ages when I was spending a week on the West Coast en femme.  And my confidence has only grown since then.  A visit to Fantasia Fair (where I got great make up tips) and a trip to DC (where I got to meet Meg) only helped to cement the feelings I now have about myself.  And even with the problems I expect to be facing next year, I have a lot to be thankful for.

Could the boy side of me function without the girl side?  Yes.  But definitely not as well.  Could I have grown had I stayed in the dead-end relationship?  Yes, but the growth would not have been as fast or as healthy.  Could I have started to lose weight otherwise?  Again, Yes, but it would have been much, much harder than it is for me now.  In short, my life is like the Turducken - something assembled from an assortment of things, but much better than any of its components - and something I am very grateful to have....

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Bloggers of the world, Unite!

I finally met one of the bloggers whose blog helped give me the courage to go out in the world, and experience it en-femme.  Kim (Traveling Transgendered) is a great person - drab or pretty!  (Although Kim has posted her Male name in her blog, I'll keep things simple and refer to Kim en-femme.)  Hopefully, Kim will be back here soon - both of us wished that the clock did not have to spin its hands so quickly....

What many people don't realize is that there are two types of cross dressers - one who wants to enjoy all of the wardrobe choices women have - from adolescence to adulthood, and the other who wants to simply enjoy the clothing options available to women of our own age.  Kim and I fall into the latter group.  And we discussed many things from who gave us our first makeovers to the headaches of being pretty during a warm, hot summer. 

Sadly, Kim had to pack for her return trip home.  I know she'll be very thankful to be home and to see her family - they sound like great people....   So I'll wish her a very Happy Holiday and hope we'll be in the same place at the same time soon....

Sunday, November 18, 2012

In front and behind the Eight Ball...

OK, so I'm stretching a little bit.  But it describes perfectly the day I had.

This morning, I met up with an old friend, and discussed our mutual problems over breakfast.  This friend, having seen my pictures of being out and about said that she'd like to accompany me (in female mode) for a night on the town sometime.  I'll love doing that - it'll be a treat having someone who enjoys this side of me that I can use as a mirror to perfect my presentation.  So I figure that I have to reserve some time for her in December or January....

I admit to a blogger's vice - I love meeting the people whose blogs I read.  Any person who can captivate me with his/her words and experiences must be interesting enough for me to meet at least once.  And so far this has proven to be true with Meg and Stana.  Well, another blogger is in town (for I don't know how long, but I expect will be home by Wednesday), and I might be able to see her if the stars are in alignment....  But with what each of us has to take care of in a short time, I'm not sure if this will be possible on this trip.

Meeting another blogger, nor is having breakfast with a GG friend what I wanted to focus on in this post.  Instead, it was a visit to a bar having a monthly transgender night.  Even in female mode, I don't like dancing.  Mind you, I might feel differently if it were ballroom dancing going on.  Since I'm still getting used to the mechanics of using a pocketbook, I don't like leaving it unattended to go on a dance floor.  It's easy to understand why women carry simple clutches (and let their men carry the important stuff) when they go to anywhere in formal garb - the small clutch can carry a minimal amount of stuff, and doesn't have to be left unattended if needed....

Now, I didn't want to drive an hour to Danbury and drive an hour back without having done something enjoyable.  So I wandered near the pool table, and dropped some money on the side, placing myself on the queue of people waiting to play.  The first thing I noticed while waiting is that females in semi-formal wear don't necessarily look good shooting pool.  The next thing was more important - when I started using a cue stick, my boobs were getting in the way.  No wonder why women let men take care of some tasks....  What surprized me was that I still could shoot a tolerable game.  In fact, in one game of 8-ball, I even got lucky and sunk the 8-ball on the break, winning the game in one shot.  (Did I tell you that I used to love shooting pool as a kid?)  I did receive one compliment from one of the people I shot pool with - (s)he said that I was very passible.  I don't know if that's true, but it did make me feel good.

After I lost control of the table the second time, I decided to leave.  I have a lot to do over the next few days (seeing my GF and my dad will cover tomorrow, followed by seeing the blogger I mentioned earlier, and then buying a new computer before the one I'm using fails completely.).  Hopefully, I can get everything I need to have done completed by Wednesday.  I'd hate having to shop for a replacement computer on Black Friday....

Friday, November 16, 2012

Being wary of being boring

One of the liabilities of being "Out" to one's friends, is that in the early days it's easy to be like a kid in a candy shop with a fist full of coins.  What I mean is that the topic of being "Out" tends to come up a lot more often than it should with friends, and one risks the possibility of becoming incredibly boring.  I've been grateful to have friends who've tolerated my penchant for talking, but I'll bet that they've gotten tired of me at times.  So I have to watch out what I'm talking about, lest I accidentally push these friends out of my life by being self absorbed.

I wonder how many trans people have had this type of experience.  It's probably more common than many of us would like to admit.  Once we find that we can be open about ourselves, a lot of pent up feelings start flowing into words drowning out anything else that can be coming along from others.  How long does this phase last?  It probably varies from person to person, but it is likely to depend on the euphoria one is feeling.

The next big question - being in stealth mode or being in the open?  Once one has worked on the voice, one can eliminate one of the big "tells" that give us away as trans people.  Then, many of us have the option of going into stealth mode.  There is one blogger who is debating whether to participate in mainstream activities in the male or female persona.  The majority of the readers advised the blogger to go in female mode.  (I'd have done the same, given how natural this blogger looks.)  The more this person lives in the female role, the more natural it becomes.  The goal is to be as comfortable in the female persona as in the male persona.  (You'll notice that I'm avoiding pronouns in this entry - when talking about a trans person and presentation mode, I feel uncomfortable saying "he" when referring to a female persona, and vice versa....)  I have a similar goal, but have decided to be relatively stealthy, except when with trans people, or when the situation would benefit by my exposure as being trans.

Hopefully, I can be as much of an inspiration to other trans people as my favorite bloggers have been to me.  (And I hope to inspire them as well, creating a virtuous circle of encouragement and friendship....)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Have you ever wanted....?

Have you ever wanted to share something of yourself that could be very awkward if it were shared with the wrong person?  This is how I feel about some of the pictures taken of Meg and me this weekend.  Both of us were having a lot of fun - and it shows!  (Meg - if you're reading this, I can't wait to get back to DC soon!)  The pictures on the hotel balcony and the pictures in the museum loo are precious to me, as they show me enjoying myself....

Luckily, I have several friends with whom who I can share this side of me.  One of these friends has helped this side of me break out of its cocoon, releasing the butterfly within.  And she has introduced me to a circle of her friends who are very accepting of me - in whatever mode I present myself. 

Now, I have to start thinking...  When I become part of a stable relationship, how do I first introduce the Marian part of my nature *and* how do I make sure that she is comfortable with me in this mode?  Right now, there is a strong possibility that I will have to deal with this issue sooner than I would have planned.  I have seen initial acceptance trigger a fear in one woman, as she had been burnt by a (now Ex) husband realizing he was gay, causing her to bolt from a relationship.  And I've seen and heard about the reactions of women in other relationships as well.  (Since they are not my stories, I won't tell them here, unless I have permission.)  There is something about being partnered with a trans person that seems to go to the core of a woman's identity, and sometimes it's threatening, and at other times it's not.  Either way, it pays to be very careful how I approach this.

But my thoughts go back to the picture of Meg and me in the loo.  Who'd have thought that we'd have something in common with Captain James Tiberius Kirk and his 5 year mission?   <g>

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

DC - Bonus Posting

I'm finally at home after 5 long hours of traveling.  Travel by rail takes time, but is much more convenient than dealing with the TSA hassles at airports.  And for us femulators, travel is much less threatening with scanned E-Tickets --- I've yet to be asked to show my license (or other ID) on a train.  So, next time I visit DC (and Meg), I'll go en-femme.

With that being said, I promised some photos....


Meg's the pretty one on the left....   You might notice the boats in the background.  My hotel was on the waterfront - and I know to ask for a waterfront room next time. 



Above is Meg all by her lonesome.  Pardon the camera angles, Tammy was holding it....  I'm finding that people are not good at aiming cameras, and I'm grateful that Google has added free photo editing tools to help correct shots taken by us amateurs.



Now here I am with Tammy.  She's a sweetheart, isn't she?  Before checking out of the hotel, we had a long conversation while she was making up a room (there was a party there the night before) and she was asking all about us being trans.  She said - when Meg gets her hip pads... Well - you can figure out the rest.   (And no, we weren't thinking anything dirty.)    Let's just say that Meg will have a perfect figure. 



And above Meg is at the Newseum.   I'm planning on sending this picture to one of my friends, saying "Hier ist eine Freundein und das "Berlin Wall".  (Damn, I can't remember the German word for wall, and the word for against.  It's been 45 years since I studied, so I have a BIG excuse.)  I want to see how long it takes to guess that this scene was posed at a museum. 



And here I am against the same wall.  As I said, Meg's the pretty one.



Now this picture needs some explanation.  Meg told me that in the loo, there were some tiles that contained news report bloopers.  Although I am usually confident when going to the ladies' loo when en-femme, it was comforting for both of us that we had the loo to ourselves and could talk in our normal voices.  This one was one of my favorites.



Above is a picture of us in the ladies' loo.  Other than us taking pictures, wouldn't you say we look like middle aged ladies?   Of course, the opening of the original Star Trek series comes to mind - "to boldly go where no man has gone before...."  (GROAN!!!!!)   But to be serious, a good femulator has to be confident enough to stand on line for the ladies' loo when necessary and project confidence that the femulator is a female.  The minute one loses confidence is the minute one could get into serious trouble in many states. 


Meg and I then went to the National Museum of Natural History and saw the Hope Diamond.  (No, it's not named for Bob and Leslie, although he might have been able to afford it at one time.)  And then to the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museum.  Afterwards, Meg had to leave.  (Meg tells the story on her site - and I love the photo of me there.  And I really do wish she got the word DRAG in the picture - I'd have framed my copy!!!!)


With all the problems I had trying to write my blog over the past few days, I realized that I needed to edit what I was writing to take out all references to pictures.  I'm lucky that I don't wear a blonde wig, or I'd have tried to use the eraser in the picture below....


The last day of my trip was spent in drab.  Unlike Kim's blog, don't ever expect to see me post any pictures of me in drab here. 

I'm still waiting for an occasion where I can wear a formal gown.  Maybe I'll ask Stana what the final nights of Fantasia Fair are like.  Although anything goes (within limits), one still tries to dress appropriately for the occasion.  But it would be nice to have that occasion, so I can gussy myself up, get a good makeover, and look like a grand dame for the ball...

Monday, November 12, 2012

DC - Day 3

Well - Meg and I weren't able to connect today.  She was up to an ungodly awful hour, and had a lot of tasks to do before going to work tomorrow.  Luckily, I had a low energy day planned, as my ankle was killing me last night.

Meg's comments on yeaterday are here:

http://youcancallmemeg.blogspot.com/2012/11/i-screwed-up.html#comment-form

I really wish she had gotten the picture she was trying to get - it would have been perfect, and I'd have framed a copy for myself.  (Maybe next visit, we can stage it....)

Sadly, I can't post any pictures tonight - the bandwidth issues on Amtrak makes it problematic.  But I hope to post a few shots of Meg and myself in a future post.  All I can say is that Meg makes a darned pretty gal in person. And her beauty is best shown in two photographs at the Newseum: the first being in front of segments taken from the Berlin Wall, and the other in the ladies' loo, where we took photos of each other using the reflections in the mirror. As Tammy (the lady I noted yesterday) said - when Meg gets a pair of hip pads, she'll be one really hot chick (my wording).  As for me, I look like a white "Big Momma" Thornton, and weigh almost as much.  (Download the song "They call me Big Momma"....You'll know why I think that she's a great singer....)







Sunday, November 11, 2012

DC - Day 2

Today, Meg and finally met.  Sadly, we both knew that it would be a short day for us.  Meg was double booked with things to do, and she had to be able to change into her alter ego - her coach was scheduled to turn into a pumpkin earlier than my coach....

Meg met me at my hotel, finding it surprizingly easy to find a spot in DC.  I introduced her to the maid I mentioned in yesterday's blog entry - and she was amazed at how good Meg looks.  (If I weren't hamstrung by this hotel's internet connection, I'd be posting some pictures now.  But they will have to wait until tomorrow.)   We then went to the Newseum, the National Museum of Natural history (where we saw the gems and minerals), and from there to the Air and Space Museum.  Sadly, Meg had to go to take care of her other committments, and she left me off at the International Spy Museum.  (This is a must visit and worth the price of admission.)

I stopped back at my hotel to rest (I was starting to get tired after an unsatisfying dinner in Chinatown) and my ankle started bothering me. After an hour trying to get this internat connection to work, so I could upload some pictures AND send others to Meg, I gave up and went to the Dupont Circle area to browse through an independent bookstore I found.  BIG MISTAKE!!!  My ankle was killing me by the time I returned to my room. 

So, what am I going to do tomorrow?  If Meg and her friend can make it into town, we might be able to do something with little walking.  If not, I hope to get the Segway tour that I keep missing (this time a daytime tour, instead of the evening tour), and avoid having to walk around.  Otherwise, I'll consider doing the Postal Museum (across from Union Station), just so I can stay "near" the hotel (where my bags will be stashed) then getting to Union Station early....








Saturday, November 10, 2012

DC - Day 1

It's amazing that we have a legacy transportation infrastructure that works half as well as it does.  My plan was to catch a Metro North train from my hometown and change at Grand Central for the subway, make an underground connection there, then make it to the Amtrak area of Penn Station within 1 1/2 hours.  I was worried that I wouldn't make the 10:05 from NYP - but I ended up being 20 minutes early!

After a relaxing 3 1/2 hours on Amtrak, my train pulled into Union Station.  (Too bad that the Penn Central didn't envision their former classic station as a modern shopping mall - it would have been a money maker for the firm, and a great way to renew a classic train station.)  My orihinal planwas to take a cab to my hotel, but the line was too long.  So it was off to the Metro I went - and after a little confusion, I found my hotel.  However, my room wasn't yet made ready, and the maid asked me for an hour to get everything ready.  Of course, I ended up killing time - finding a great BBQ cart within spitting distance of the hotel.

45 minutes later, I returned, and the lady was finishing up the room.  We had a nice chat while she was finishing up, and then she left.  After a few minutes, I changed into my female presentation and left my room to explore the town.  Walking down the hall, I saw this lady again, and she didn't recognize me - until I was close, and saw the details of my face.  She dropped her jaw - saying "Damn, you look good!"  We had another great chat, and then I was off to U Street, with an intention to eat at Ben's Chili Bowl.   This didn't happen - Ben's was way too crowded.  I ended up eating at an Ethiopian joint nearby.

Later on, I firmed up my plans for Sunday with Meg - and she'll be over in the morning for some heavy duty tourism.  Sadly, she has logistical requirements which will prevent her from spending the full day with me.  But that will allow me to get in the night time Segway tour that I had planned for tonight.

Monday will be an interesting day.  As much as I want to stay in girl mode, I may have to turn into a pumpkin much earlier than I'd like.  Checkout time at my hotel is 12 pm, and I have a 6 pm train back to NYC.  By the time I get to NYC, it'll be 9:30 pm, and I won't be reaching home until 11:15 pm.  That's a long time to stay in girl mode without being able to deal with beard stubble.  (I can't wait to start laser, then electrolysis for the hairs that laser doesn't work on.)

But back to DC tourism for a moment....  Hopefully, I'll get some good pictures of myself in DC to post here.  But I don't think I'll be showing them to one woman yet.  There's one woman I've been seeing who I thought would never need to know about the Marian side of me.  And until I have "the conversation" about this side of me, she won't see those pictures.  (But it would be nice for her to accept this side of me - and for us to move forward.  Until then, I must take care of the other irons I had in the fire.) 

My question - How should I best break the ice?  It's time to do it, and I want to take care of it before the holidays.

Friday, November 9, 2012

DC Bound

Well, I'm packing and almost ready for my trip to DC.  I haven't been there in about 45 years, so it's virtually a new city to me.  Meg and I have been in contact with each other, and if all goes right, we'll both be able to do some tourism in girl mode.

I've decided to make the trip down in boy mode.  As much as I'd be anonymous within NYC and further South, I often meet people I commute with during the week on my weekend jaunts into NYC.  Even meeting someone I knew wouldn't be too bad - I'm not friends to any of them, just a passing acquaintance.  But my monthly pass would not agree with my presentation, and that might cause some needless embarassment.

I will be taking an evening tour of DC by Segway the day I arrive, if all goes right. Hopefully, I'll be able to get some new pictures of me near some of the monuments.  But I expect to get some good night time photos.. There is so much to see and so little time.  This makes it an inevitability for me that I will return some time next year.  But there will be so many places I want to get to next year while I'm still able to travel.  So I'll have to prioritize my trips, that I can visit San Francisco (again), Seattle, Chicago (again), DC (again), Philadelphia (finally), and Provincetown for Fantasia Fair.

The big question - Will I have a woman with me for some of these trips?  (Hopefully, I'll be in a relationship with a lady who is comfortable with this side of me.)  Or, will I be alone?  It'd be nice to have someone to share my travels with.  Heck, I can say this for sure - I can be the one person who'll have no problems accompanying a partner when shopping, and I understand why a woman can never have enough shoes and handbags.... <g>

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Elections

One thing I've noticed about people who are a smidgen outside the political mainstream is that they are the "Canaries in the political Coal Mine."  GLBT people straddle the line that defines where the mainstream lies.  Most people accept and respect us, as long as we behave responsibly.  In fact, one state looks like it will have elected the first lesbian to the US Senate.  Transgendered people are accepted - especially by the younger generation.

Acceptance was not the case 50 years ago, save for isolated communities.  How many youngsters are familiar with events such as Stonewall, and people such as Christine Jorgensen?  The outsiders of yesterday would be amazed how much things have changed in less than one lifetime.   And yet, I'm not sure they'd be happy, as we have not yet cemented the gains we have made in these 50 years.

This election was framed by a decision best described as: "Do we turn the clock back 50 years?"  For the GOP, we had two candidates who promoted "family values", and who were willing to turn back notable two achievements of the past 4 years - Affordable Health Care, and allowing Gays/Lesbians to openly serve in the military.  For the Democrats, we had two pragmatic candidates who were saying "Let us finish the job we started", even though they could not deliver all the changes they promised in the last election.  (I cite political gridlock for this failure, but that's an aside.)  The Democrats were a strong progressive alternative to a regressive Republican party.

The GLBT population, as a whole, tended to support the Democrats.  The rhetoric from many of the GOP supporters often stated that recognizing gay rights would offend God (it's amazing how many times "God" was cited in their campaigns) and that it was a moral duty to do God's will and stop the moral collapse.  Some of the bombastic agitators were claiming that society would clapse and incur God's wrath if a Democrat was elected.  No wonder why the GLBT population was worried - we know how much things have changed, and we know how quickly they could change back.  It was a no-brainer for the GLBT community to oppose the GOP - self interest dictated support for the Democratic opposition to the GOP.

America is a very polarized society - the geographic line which (for the most part) characterizes the divide between Democrat dominant states and Republican dominant states is the Mason-Dixon line.  Ignoring political parties (which have done a flip flop), the South is still in opposition to the North.  And it is important to note that this region is where fundamentalist conservative organized religion is strongest, and puts the GLBT community most at risk.  It is no coincidence that the loudest voices against according GLBT people with the same rights as straight people come from this region.  And we would be at risk if leaders from this region, the opposite political pole, were to gain power.

One blogger whose blog I regularly read (and who I've met in person) stirred up a hornet's nest of activity when she posted support for Obama based purely on transgender issues.  I was amazed how quickly the conservatives tried to attack this person.  Can they really be serious and expect a person to support policies that would lessen his/her legal rights?  Do they seriously expect that we should be making the sacrifices to support their social goals, when we are at odds with those goals?  Something is seriously wrong when people attack a person for merely stating where they stand on an issue.  No wonder why GLBT people were worried about a GOP win - we remember history, and we remember how quickly people at the edges of the mainstream were sacrificed to keep the mobs in line.

So what should be our goal?  To me, it should be to have as many people from the GLBT communities out ans about in society.  If we stop fearing being out and about, others will see us as normal and treat us with respect.  If we continue to hide, we will not gain that respect.  Does this mean we should rub our GLBT characteristics in everyone's face?  No.  We should let that be a minor characteristic of who we are.  We should keep living normal lives, acting normal (god, I hate that word "normal"), and keep pushing towards the center of the mainstream.