Saturday, April 30, 2016

Quickie: Dinner with BXM

Work was uneventful today.  I was able to make a good train home, and made a phone call to BXM to see if she was up to having dinner tonight.  She was....

- - - - - -

BXM is the type of person who always seems to have melodrama in her life.  And tonight was my night to listen to the latest in her melodrama - which involved health insurance problems, healthcare for her dad, with a dash of politics thrown in for good measure.

Why, you might ask, do I seem to attract people who are melodramatic?  I think it's because this T-Gal is a grandmotherly type at heart.  What do grandmothers do?  They listen to people (usually their grandchildren) and carefully dispense their voices of experience.  And in the case of BXM, she needed a woman to talk with, and I was that woman.

Contrast BXM with Lili.  BXM doesn't delegate her responsibilities to others, while Lili will try to get others to do any task she finds unpleasant or challenging.  Lili is used to living in her bubble.  For the past few weekends, I've been unable to visit Lili - but Lili acts as if I'm going to put my relationship with GFJ at risk just to be a short term companion for Lili.  (Given how little time GFJ and I can spend together these days, we need time for ourselves.) 

- - - - - -

I've left a personal ad (for me as Marian) up on OK Cupid - not because I'm looking to replace GFJ, but because I want to see who might be interested in a bi-gendered person.  Recently, a Lesbian took an interest in me based on the photo below.

Although she was not interested in me after learning I am Transgender, it was nice to know that some women would find me attractive.  Now, if only I could find a bisexual woman who could accept me in either presentation.  But if I did, would I leave GFJ?  Right now, I doubt it.  But until GFJ is in a position to make long term decisions about her life, I am not in a position to make an absolute one way commitment to her in this regard.  Yet, for now, things seem to be working well - and that's all I can ask not to look elsewhere for romance.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Game night - and, as usual, I lost....

I'll start with a quick blurb about work - I got the paperwork submitted for the project I'm assigned to at the office, and now, it's on to a quick conference call with the client.  So I'm temporarily idle until the client gets back in touch with me and when another project's deliverables is made available to me to work with.

The other day, my boss hurt his foot, and had to spend half the day at his podiatrist to determine how best to treat his problem.  When he returned, there was a "boot" on his foot - and he told me that the foot will need a minimum of two weeks to heal before the podiatrist can determine what to do next.  Since my boss is a good man, and a more mature person than I was at his age, I'm wishing him a speedy recovery.

Although I made it out of the office a little late, I was barely able to make the 4:47 pm train out of Grand Central - and yet left the apartment late for my weekly game play in Yonkers.  (I wasted 30+ minutes looking for some rubbing alcohol I keep in the medicine chest for purposes of cleaning my forehead skin before doing my preparation to go out as Marian. I'll have to complain to my cleaning lady about this next time I get the chance.)  I was lucky - I got there in time to play a game of "Monikers" - and lost as usual.  But it was fun.

Strangely enough, the Whine and Diners got together to see "Greek Wedding 2".  If I hadn't already seen that movie with GFJ, I'd have skipped game night to be with the Whine and Dine crew - for the first time in over a month.  I don't count on them meeting anymore.  The lady who organizes that meetup is too busy to schedule anything in advance, and I enjoy the game group enough not to bail on them, except in cases where I know I will have a good time.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

A public board meeting.

I knew today was going to be a busy day.  First, I had to get some paperwork done ASAP for the office, and then I had to rush out to a public co-op board meeting.  You can guess that by the time I had a chance to write this entry, that I'd be running on borrowed steam....

Borrowed steam?

Well, I'm combining a couple of metaphors here, and noting that I'm running out of energy, while knowing that I'm postponing my day of reckoning for being up too long until tomorrow night, when I'm scheduled to go and play games.

- - - - - -

The first thing I did when I got to the office was to work on paperwork needed to start my project - and was 95% complete by the time my boss had to run off to the doctor's office for an injury he sustained in the off hours.  So I couldn't review my updates until late in the day - and barely completed the review (which I passed) before having to run out to the board meeting.

Unfortunately, by running out a minute late, I missed the train that'd bring me home at 6:30 pm, and ended up catching the train that brought me home at 7:00 pm.  As a result, I didn't have the chance to stop home before the board meeting.  Since the private, then public, parts of the meeting lasted until after 9:00 pm, I wasn't able to go and eat until after 9:30 pm.  Luckily, HWV and I planned to eat after the meeting - and we were having a great chat until 11:30 pm or so.  (One of these days, we'll be able to meet again for food without a late night time limit.)  Before we parted, I told her that GFJ was going to be with her family on Mother's day weekend, so I was looking for special things I could do as Marian that weekend.  Hopefully, she'll have some good ideas - as I'll be a bit envious of her, as she is spending some of her vacation time at a great sporting event.....

Sadly, GFJ wasn't up when I got home.  I'll have to catch her in the morning....  (I miss her, and can't wait to see her on Saturday evening.)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Working Late....

At this time of year, I expect to see views like this on my ride home on Metro North.  Today, I ended up working late, because some work I was doing at the office was not up to my standards or to my boss's - simply because I was trying to catch up on lost time, so that we could present the document to the client this week. 

In one sense, it's not as bad as I'm making it sound.  And in another sense, it's worse - because I'm screwing up the details.  I've always known that I was a high level thinker, but I'm being challenged every day to grow in ways I've neglected for years.  Assuming that I survive, and that I can get this client's changes implemented without trouble, I'll feel much more comfortable in my ability to do the job.  Until then, I'll be walking on a tightrope without feeling that there is a net underneath me.

- - - - - -

Tonight, I missed this sight, as well as my chance to vote against the person of my choice, due to having taken a late train.  But I did have a nice chat with a woman who was taking the train to Croton - someone who I'd like to get to know more as a commuting companion, and nothing more.

One thing I have to watch out for is the temptation to perform outreach when it is not called for.  There is a part of me that wants to talk about being transgender.  And yet, I know that this is the topic which will cause many people to shy away from me - especially if I see them (or they see me) on the train regularly.

- - - - - -

It's important to find balance in one's life.  And I'm still looking for that balance.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Hard decisions about something light....

Lately, this dress has been calling my name.  No, I don't intend to wear it as a dress, as much as I intend to wear it as a long tunic coupled with a pair of leggings.The only problem is that I have no idea of how it would look on my body until it arrives in the mail, and I'll hate returning it if I have to do so.

After a long period of unemployment, I've become much more careful about the items I'm buying for  my female wardrobe.  For example, there was one dress that looked good on the model, but looked terrible on me.  So this means that I wasted $50 that I could have spent on things that would look good on me.

As you can guess, I enjoy shopping for female clothing - especially dresses.  If I could, I'd be spending all my time in them, as they are much more comfortable than wearing trousers. Alas, having to spend time as Mario to earn a living makes it impossible to live my life the way I'd like. Eventually, I will be able to retire, and I will be able to get back to the life I started living during my forced hiatus from the work force.

Until that day, I'll take my time as Marian as it comes. And I hope I'll have someone with me for the next time of my life....


Monday, April 25, 2016

Quickie: Thoughts on Commuting

It's not the commute I hate, as much as it is the time it takes to get to and from work.  If I were to get in to work at 8:00 am, I'd still not be able to get home until 6:00 pm at the earliest, and would still not be able to attend many meetups as Marian.

New York has a lot of mass transit options.  But they are geared for reaching the city's core from within the city itself.  If you are coming from the suburbs, the trains leave you at Penn Station or at Grand Central; the PATH Tubes drop you off at the World Trade Center complex, or at 32nd Street and 6th Avenue; and the ferries (save the one from Staten Island) leave you blocks from any subways.  They are not meant to get you to the edges of Manhattan, nor are they meant to get you to all places in the outlying suburbs where jobs are being created.  No wonder why businesses have gradually migrated to less congested, and car friendly locales.

If you are lucky enough to be served by one of New York's transit options, you will often have to wait on cold (in winter) or hot (in summer) platforms waiting for overcrowded trains. New York is still paying for the disinvestments made during the reign of Robert Moses and in the later Financial Crises. The 2nd Avenue subway, long awaited, will soon become a reality - but not what is needed to sate the East Side's transit needs.  And I doubt that all 4 phases will be completed by the time I retire.  This means that we likely won't see a needed replacement for both the 2nd and 3rd Avenue Els running under 2nd Avenue until 100 years after the 2nd Avenue El was torn down.

Given how uncomfortable commuting is, there was no chance that I'd commute into NYC as Marian for a job.  However, if the 3rd Avenue El were still in existence, I might have considered doing so.  It certainly would have been nice on some days to walk outside with a comfortable breeze blowing up my skirt and keeping me comfortable. 

One can dream.....

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Where would you rather live?

I live in one of the highest taxed states in this country.  And yet, I don't find the taxes excessive for the services we can get here.  This is because I have a different attitude than most people, and treat my state as if it had one hyper expensive region (New York City and its suburbs) that has an excessively high cost of living, and one average expense region (Upstate NY) that is reasonably affordable.

- - - - - -

Recently, I had dinner with Vicki, and she told me about her potential places of retirement.  None of them were near New York.  In fact, one of her choices was Montana, with the idea that she and her husband could get a large plot of land - which could be used for hunting.  (I'll miss her dearly if she chooses a place outside the Northeast, but I can't order my friends to stay nearby, nor can I make them choose places that are GLBT friendly.

This got me to thinking about retirement, and I realize that it is virtually impossible for me to retire to San Francisco, now that it has been taken over by Silicon Valley yuppie exiles.  So, I've started to ask the question - where are the affordable places to live that are also GLBT friendly?  For the most part, the "Red States" are out - when their leaders actively court preachers who advocate killing GLBT's for defying "god's will", I see no way to feel safe living there.  What's left that's affordable?

- - - - - -

I'm still hoping that I can make it to the Pacific Northwest.  The heat and humidity of our Northeast USA summers will likely become more oppressive - and I can't stand the heat.  Places like Seattle and Portland have a high number of well educated people, and are likely to be GLBT friendly.  Additionally, cities with decent mass transportation, healthcare, and cultural opportunities are essential for a retired person to live a long and rewarding life in retirement.

This is only a meditation for now.  I can afford where I live in the NYC suburbs, and I can go about (without interference, for the most part) as Marian.  Do you have any ideas of other affordable places with good weather, where I can live as Marian 24x7 without problems?

Saturday, April 23, 2016

A day that I wish I could have cancelled....

No, this is not a Jaguar showroom with a classic car.  This is the Museum of Modern Art in NYC, where this car was on display as a piece of art. And this is where my niece and I made plans to go several weeks ago....

- - - - - -

Today was another depressing day at work.  The time I had planned to spend completing one of the tasks on my task list got taken away and put on other tasks - where my memory failed me, making me feel embarrassed in front of my boss.  And the more mistakes that I make, the more at risk I am of not being able to earn my keep....

- - - - - -

So with a feeling of dread in mind, I went to MoMA, met up with my niece, and saw several exhibits - including artwork by Degas, and some architectural models from a "school" (not referring to any classroom here) of Japanese architects. 

Many of these models were pieces of art in their own right, and could give only a hint of what the completed buildings would look like in their final setting.  Unfortunately, I was not able to do any of these models justice, so I decided not to spend time taking photos in this gallery.

While we were walking around, I noticed quite a few women dressing to impress.  Quite a few wore dresses and skirts, many of these women were also wearing bold colors and patterns drawing attention to them as if they were peacocks.  Damn, I was envious of these ladies, both for the clothes and for their figures!

Towards the end of our visit, we stumbled into the Degas exhibition.  There was one series of prints I was very interested in - the works he did of women in a brothel. Did he partake of their services?  I wouldn't doubt it.  But my niece found these works more interesting than the other works of his on display.

Although my photography is terrible, not doing these pictures justice, they should give you an idea of why these works were so captivating....

All too soon, the museum closed, and it was time to leave.  Both of us wish we had more time, and I know that we'll be looking for another museum to visit in the near future....

Friday, April 22, 2016

A slow ride up the river....

Today was an uneventful work day, save that I left the office a little bit late.  If I had known that my train would also be running late due to a stuck train on the tracks (from which our train had to run "local" to bring that train's people to their destination stations), I would have stayed a little late and taken a slow ride to Grand Central.

- - - - - -

Discussing work would be a big bore.  However, I did figure out how to resolve a problem I've had switching over a prescription from my old pharmacy to my new mail order pharmacy.  It seems that I had to manually open the account with the mail order pharmacy, than to have my doctor's electronic transmission open things up.  (Yes, this was confusion on my part.  But what made it worse was that my doctor's office didn't notice anything wrong. Yet, I can't blame the doctor's office - they tried to do the right thing, and I misunderstood the process....)  Well, I'm hoping that my pills come in before the old ones run out.  And I'll try to stretch out what supply I have until my next visit with the doctor.

- - - - - - 

During the day, I received an interesting text.  DCD had gotten himself into some minor trouble with his "House Pest".  This woman had worn out her welcome weeks ago, and DCD was too chickenshit to kick her out of his place.  Well, he got arrested for disorderly conduct (no juicy details to share), and later, she was removed from his house under police escort.  Of course, I could say: "I told you so" - but that would be rubbing salt in his wounds.  I hope this is the last time he lets his pecker do the thinking for him.

And on that line of thought, I have to talk about Lili - as she called shortly after my text message exchanges with DCD.  Lili keeps looking for "permission" to take on her tenant as a romantic interest, and wanted me to give it to her.  (Both GFJ and I think that Lili dating this fellow would be a big mistake for many reasons.)  And I refused to do so, saying that she needs good friends more than she needs lovers.  Until she realizes that what she has is an addiction to romance, she will continue to sleep with the wrong men - and cause me grief..... 

- - - - - -

On the way home, I saw that I was a little late for my return train, but found that I had 2 minutes to make it on to the train from the time I reached Grand Central. By the time I got on the train, there were hardly any seats.  And I should have known things were likely to go wrong when the train was delayed in leaving Grand Central.

Until we got near Dobbs Ferry, the ride up the river was uneventful.  One could have gotten many a picturesque photo just by pointing one's camera out the window and taking random shots.  As for me, I played a few rounds of Candy Crush Saga (I had 6 hours of unlimited lives) to kill time until I got home.  By the time we reached Irvington, the train was proceeding at a snail's pace - there was a "dead" train on the tracks, and someone back at Metro North headquarters was making a decision which train would pick up these stranded passengers and bring them to stations between Tarrytown and Croton.  Ours was that train, but it was on the wrong track.  We were delayed a couple of times while we inched into the stations, so that departing passengers could use the "bridge" over a temporarily "dead" track to reach the station platform.  By the time we made it to my station, we were 35 minutes late - and I could have taken a later train to get home at the same time.

- - - - - -

As a result of the commuting delay, I lost a lot of time I could have used to switch into Marian Mode before going to game night.  As it stood, I was late for the first game (not much of a loss), and on time for the next game (which I lost).  Like most weeks, I had a good time with the group, and it provided me with my one regular chance to socialize as Marian during the week.



Thursday, April 21, 2016

A drip of good luck....

I finally made my connection with the handyman to fix the leak under my sink.  Although I was not going to be home until 8:00 pm or so, he said "not to worry", as he was working on another apartment at the time.

What I totally forgot about was that this same handyman installed the pipe that needed to be fixed.  So when he came over, he mentioned that this was the same pipe that he installed, proceeded to tighten the connection, and stopped the leak.  Even better, he didn't want any money for fixing the problem.  Of course, I handed him a couple of double sawbucks as my way to say thanks for 15 minutes of his time that saved me $200.

- - - - - -

You might be asking - "What does this have to do about me being transgender?"

Well, my handyman has seen me in both male and female modes, and has not passed judgement.  What he may be thinking to himself is one thing, but he has the taste to keep any negativity to himself.  His availability at night has made it possible for me to be able to change into Marian Mode tomorrow night without being delayed by his work on the drain pipel

- - - - - - 

Now, continuing in reverse order for the day.....

At work, I started filing paperwork for work that needs to be done for one of our clients. This is not hard work, but it forces me to learn things about the system by actually having to answer questions about the setup - and handing that information over to the people who will actually do the setup work for me. 

Even though I often feel a little overwhelmed and helpless, I feel that this is normal for a person who knows that he/she is a rookie at his/her new craft, and is afraid of making stupid errors that are part of the normal learning process.  My boss has told us that we will soon be learning our jobs by intensive doing, as a couple of clients have turned on the spigots for work that needs to be done.

- - - - - -

So why did I report things in reverse today?

Sometimes, I start my writing in search of a theme.  And today's theme was that of things that take their time.  Fixing a leak takes time.  Learning a new job takes time.  And getting to work takes time.  Slowly, a leak can fill up any pot one puts under a sink.  Slowly, the skills needed to do a job are learned.  And slowly, my long commute gets me to and from work, taking up a good chunk of my waking hours.  Life simply seems to be a slow drip these days, where little happens each day, but over time, change occurs.....

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Thinking of having a Dim Sum lunch

Dim Sum - Chinese "Tea Lunch".  Or, as I say - YUM!  

- - - - - -

I wasn't thinking of Dim Sum when I started the day. However, things changed when I was in a meeting, where 3 of us were being trained by our boss in the nuances of the product that we are to support.  One lady came in from an out of town office, and was leaving town at 4:00 pm.  Of course, this left her little time to do anything except go to Chinatown for lunch.  So I suggested Dim Sum....

My boss thinks that Dim Sum Go Go to be the best value in Chinatown. And based on my experience with their former Beacon, NY outlet, I'd agree that they are to be top rated.  So this was the place that we told this lady to visit on her short trip here.  But this started my craving for Dim Sum to start waking way below my level of consciousness.

When I got home from work, I immediately went to my co-op board meeting, and did not even bother go to my apartment. After taking care of our business, I chatted with the co-op board president, and it looks like we'll be going to Aberdeen for Dim Sum this weekend. And this will be my chance to be en-femme for the day while GFJ goes out hiking with her friends.

- - - - - -

I strongly miss my time en-femme.  Although I now have the money to afford updates to my feminine wardrobe, I don't have the time to live en-femme the way I want to.  When the Summer comes, I'll be envying many of the women working near where I work. But I hope to find opportunities to spend more of my time en-femme while GFJ goes out and spends her time in the great outdoors.

The other day, GFJ mentioned that both of us need to get into better shape.  And I told her that I don't mind walking.  Both of us have trouble with stairs - GFJ more so than I do.  In the 6 weeks since I started work, I do not have to pause while climbing the second flight of stairs coming out of the subway and on to Fulton Street on my way to work.  Yes, I am devoid of energy when I get out of the subway entrance. But this is not because of the stairs.  Instead, it's because my body is still getting used to being in motion.

- - - - - -

Hopefully, I'll find ways of both spending time with GFJ and spending time en-femme when more cisgender women are wearing their skirts and dresses.  It's one thing to be transgender.  But having to tamp down that side of me is a major drain on my psyche, and something I hate in the trade off I've made to have a decent standard of living....



Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, It's off to work we go....

When I started the day, I entertained the possibility of going home a few minutes early, and changing into Marian Mode, so that I could go shopping en-femme.  I'm glad that I wasn't counting on this, as I didn't make it home until after 9:00 pm.

- - - - - -

As I've mentioned many times, I have a two hour commute between home and office. This means that if all trains are running on schedule, I'll leave my house at 7:15 am then arrive at the office at 9:15 am, and later, leave the office at 5:15 pm, and get home by 7:15 pm.  Today, my boss kept us around until 6:45 pm, showing us around some of the things we'll need to know in order to do our jobs.  (Before you think he didn't pay attention to our needs, he asked both of us if we had other plans - and both my coworker and I stayed the extra time needed to get needed uninterrupted time with my boss.) What I didn't mention so far, is that I was given a project - a client with a simple change that needs to be done.  And I'll be starting on this project in the morning. 

I am a bit nervous, and I admitted it in front of my boss.  It's been a while since I had the chance to prove myself on the job, and it's nice to have that chance again.  I knew that taking this job would get in the way of me going out as Marian. But it also gives me the money to afford being Marian when I have the time to go out with the ladies.

- - - - - -

GFJ may not be completely comfortable when I admit that I look forward to her going on Saturday hikes, so that I can get some time out as Marian.  This is the price she'll have to pay to be with me. I'm not getting in the way of her developing the friendships she wants and needs for the next stage of her life. And I hope she recognizes that I need the same amount of freedom to do the same thing - in my unusual way.  (It's hard for me to be authentic when I'm in Mario Mode. And it's even harder for me to make the friends I want and need this way.)    

Ideally, I'd have found a local job that would have afforded me the ability to earn enough money to keep a roof over my head, and live my daytime hours as Marian.  Having money in the bank is a trade-off I willingly make for now.  But as retirement age approaches, I'll have many hard decisions to make.  Will I continue to live my life playing hopscotch across the gender divide?  Or, will I bite the bullet, and move towards full social and medical transition?  Only time will tell.  But for now, I'll keep my options open as long as possible....


Monday, April 18, 2016

Little Headaches....

This is not a picture of what the space underneath my kitchen sink looks like.  It is only an illustration to give you an idea of something I have to deal with, and may eliminate the one night I planned to spend en-femme next week.

- - - - - -

Unlike the picture above, all of the pipes leading to and from my kitchen sink are made of metal. The pipe connecting my sink to the "trap pipe" (the white "U" or elbow shaped pipe at the bottom) is made of copper, and it is shiny - unlike the pipes around it.  This means that once a leak occurs, one has to consider the condition of the pipes around it before making repairs.  No matter what is said by some, metal will gradually oxidize with exposure to water and other chemicals,  and pipes will eventually need to be replaced.  Luckily, this is a rare thing - except for those pipes near sinks, toilets, and tubs.  And recently. this pipe  below the sink's drain came loose on both ends (don't ask me how I know this, except to note that I was NOT doing any repairs) and started to leak.

Unfortunately, I come home too late from work to be here during the week for daytime plumber's rates.  We have a handyman working for my co-op who does side jobs around the place.  He installed my kitchen faucet, and is the most likely person to ask for help (for a price, of course) in this matter.  But he's not here after 5:00 pm.  So I may be able to get GFJ to be here while he works on the pipes, hoping that he can do all the work in one evening (he may need parts), so that I don't have to take off from work.  If this is the case, I'll be sure to take GFJ out for a nice dinner.

One thing I know - I won't be doing much in the kitchen until this problem is resolved....

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Quickie: Thoughts on Bathroom Bills

I don't have much time for today's entry, as I have to be out the door soon.  However, I had to make a statement about what's going on in the South lately - "Bathroom Bills".

- - - - - -

We are under attack.  The dullards from the South are an embarrassment to the country.  Several states, the latest being Mississippi, have enacted bills which are meant to keep us from going to public bathrooms.  (South Carolina is a noted exception so far.) The anti GLBT forces want to use us as victims - and it's time we stand up en-masse. 

It's not enough that we post memes of trans men and trans women going to the restrooms assigned to their birth genders.  But we must make a visible public stand as a group - and stage active protests where the state would be forced to arrest us.  Once done, we could use Federal anti discrimination statutes against the states.  But there is one problem - who can we get to finance the process?

This is where the famous and rich trans folk may be able to help us.  Let's petition a few and see if they can help finance our protests.  Yes, a person like Caitlyn Jenner may be useless, but others may be willing to help.  Who knows?  We might just be able to stop this quickly with the right help.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Quickie: A few Hours out as Marian

A post out of sequence....  Sometimes, I get all discombobulated in regards to this blog, and this week was one of those weeks where events got in the way of me having enough time to write my usual posts....

- - - - - -

This Wednesday, I decided to spend some time out in Marian Mode.  It's unusual for me these days to do so, as I get home too late to change into Marian and do anything meaningful en-femme.  However, I haven't seen my favorite saleslady in a while, and I wanted to see if the size 13-W shoes I saw on my last visit to The Avenue were still there for me to buy.

Instead of leaving the office at 5:30-6:00 pm, I left a smidgen early - about 5:10 pm or so.  This allowed me to make the 5:45 pm train, and I was able to get home by 7:00 pm, change into Marian Mode, and then be on the road before 8:00 pm.  This allowed me to get to Newburgh by 8:45-9:00 pm, and I was able to have the pleasant chat I haven't been able to have for a long while....  Sadly, the shoes I wanted to look at were gone, but that only means that I'll have to mail order one pair - a replacement for a pair of Mary Janes whose heel is too worn out for me to feel comfortable wearing them....  (They were very comfortable shoes, and I hate replacing them.) 

On the way home, I stopped into the local Walmart for some food and cosmetics. As I was leaving, one woman approached me (and others) asking if she could get a ride back to Poughkeepsie.  The story she was giving was that the magnetic stripe on her credit card wasn't working, and that she needed a ride home.  One problem - If one lives "up North", one either has a car, or is absolutely sure to have money for the cab ride home - if out late at night.  To get rid of her, I took $1 out of my purse - and handed it to her.  If she really needed help, I gave her some.  If she was a "professional beggar", she had a patsy.  Either way, it was more important for me to get into my car and get home without problem - and my last mission for the day was accomplished....

Friday, April 15, 2016

Quickie: Dinner with BXM

BXM and I have been trying to get together for a while, and it's been over a couple of months since we were last together.  Well, tonight was our chance to catch up on things....

- - - - - -

This morning, I left for work at the usual time - and had a totally uneventful day.  Although some of the software on my machine was misconfigured, I was able to get my work done for the last day that my boss was out on vacation.  Just before I went into a meeting at 3:00 pm, our technology expert came over to fix what was wrong with my machine.  So I left him in charge, while I went off to a meeting to discuss some work that was going to come up in the morning.

When the meeting broke up, it was 4:00 pm, and I was out the door, off to Northern Westchester and home.  Getting home, I found that my cleaning lady had done her thing, and it was again safe to take my makeup box, wig, and handbag out of the closet, making it possible for me to change into Marian mode for the evening.  I knew that BXM would be late for dinner, but that's the price I pay to see her - especially on a weeknight, when my Yonkers gaming venue is not available.

BXM and I went to a local diner, and chatted for a couple of hours. The topic of me being transgender came up, as well as the politics of the day.  She realized what I want to become with transition - a grandmotherly middle aged woman, getting together with the ladies in coffee klatches, mah jongg games, knitting circles, and generally participating in virtually every activity that a typical woman of my age would take part in.  Eventually, both of us got tired, and I knew that I had a 45 minute drive ahead of me. So it was off to my place, and then to sleep for the night.

Thursday, April 14, 2016


Courtesy on the NYC Subway - something which was in short supply since the first trains ran many years ago.

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It's been roughly 6 weeks since I began commuting to Lower Manhattan.  The commute is exactly what I expected - 2 hours underground, book-ended with 2 hours above ground, with 8 hours in between dedicated to work.  And, in many ways, the commute is worse than before, due to the extra distance of the commute and the overcrowding at key points of the trip.

Now that construction at Grand Central is well underway for LIRR East Side Access, we've lost half of a staircase that led to the Times Square shuttle from the Metro North side of the complex. This causes long lines at certain times of the morning, as people coming from Track 4 interfere with the downward flow of people on the now narrow staircase.  Of course, things often get interesting at Times Square, as there is often some musical entertainment playing in the area where people are making their connections between the Shuttle, the Broadway line, and the 7th Avenue line.  Some of the musicians are good, and others are not worth the price "charged" for admission. But Times Square often becomes the highlight of my commute.

Normally, the ride along 7th Avenue is swift and uneventful.  However, once one is below Chambers Street, things get tight.  There is little room on the platforms, as the narrow streets limit both rail traffic capacity and platform capacity. So I dread the thought of getting caught underground in the Summer, when the inevitable delays slow down my commute and make it very uncomfortable.

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Imagine if I had applied for this job, and got it while en-femme.  There would be 3-5 months out of each year that the commute would be unbearable for me.  I would have gladly taken a job earning half my present salary, if I had been able to work en-femme and work within a 30 minute ride by car.  Alas, this was not to be.  At least I know how to deal with the insanity underground - unlike the tourists who block the doors of the subway cars at Times Square, slowing things down for everyone and causing the delays I hate so much....

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

What may have been the coldest day of the Spring...

I'll bet you that the woman wearing this outfit would have frozen her buns off today.  Yet, there were so many women in NYC who were wearing skirts and dresses to work, that I would have felt at home if I were in Marian Mode.  Alas, I work as Mario, and I got much more exposed to the cold than I wanted....

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When I started out for work this morning, I was running late.  But I was glad to have been wearing a sweater under my coat, and to be carrying both gloves and ear muffs as well.  Other than being 5 minutes late to the train station (with 10 to spare), it looked like I'd have a normal commute.  But once I got off the shuttle to Times Square, all my plans were out the door.

Going to the Downtown platform, I noticed that there was no one on the stairs, but that it was much more crowded than usual.  No express trains were coming, and after 10 minutes, we found out why - there was a train stuck at 72nd street.  A few minutes later, that same train pulled into Times Square and left - without opening its doors to pick up passengers. So at that point, I knew it was time to switch over to the Broadway line, and go to Whitehall Street, where I would likely be able to pick up a bus to my office.

Of course, my plans were foiled, when I had to wait another 10 minutes to catch the right Downtown train - and reached Lower Manhattan a little after I normally get to my office.  BRRRR!!!!!  The bus I wanted to catch wasn't running, so I had to hoof it for 15 minutes in a sub freezing chill until I got to work.

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Going home was a little better - I was able to strip off one layer of clothing, as the temperature had broken 40 degrees. But, I missed a train home, so I ended up getting in my door at 8:00 pm - too late to do much for the rest of the evening.  (Again, if I made the earlier train, I'd have had an option to go out in Marian Mode - something that I'd like to do tomorrow, if I get home early enough....)

However, there was one bit of good news.  Earlier in the day, Lili called me and asked if I could be her baby sitter when she gets back from her plastic surgery.  There is no way I can do this while working, and there is no way I want to do this while not on vacation. So having a job paid off in a way I'd never have expected....   


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

To shop, or not to shop - that is the question.

You might have noticed that I've written more short entries lately.  That's something I expected once I started the new job.  A big part of the reason is that I don't have that much time in my life to spend in Marian Mode due to the inflexibility of my commute.  There is no way that I will jeopardize my new job just to have more time in Marian Mode.  In the future, I might find out how to use time to my advantage. But now, I have to put in time as Mario, and limit my outings to those days where I have the time to change into Marian, and not worry how late I get back from the outing.

Today could have been one of those days I had some time in Marian Mode.  However, I decided to stay a few minutes late for appearances sake, and missed the train that would have gotten me home by 7:15 pm, and able to get to The Avenue in Newburgh by 8:45 pm.  This is just as well, because I had 2 loads of laundry to take care of, and that the roads were likely to become slippery when the temperature dropped later in the evening. Yes, I missed seeing DD, my favorite saleslady.  But I can see her some other day.  It's not as if anyone is going anywhere soon.  And I certainly didn't need to spend any more money on my female wardrobe, while I'm refreshing my male wardrobe for my trips into the office.

If I had gotten home at 6:30 pm or so, I might have made a different decision. But given how tired I feel, I can wait until Thursday to become my authentic self again.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Quickie: Summer's Coming

Can you blame me for wanting an excuse to show pretty women in swimsuits? Of course, as TG's most of us wish we could fill in these suits as well as these ladies.  

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Later on in the year, I plan to go on a cruise with Lili.  Hopefully, I'll be able to fit into a smaller swimsuit and appear as something other than an oversized whale when I join her in the hot tub.   Even if I am still the same size as I am now, I will be able to afford both the new post-mastectomy swimsuit, and the swim forms that will go inside the swimsuit's breast pockets.

Do I wish I still had hair on top of my head?  Hell, Yes!  I'd love to be able to grow it out, and then style it as a woman would prior to the cruise.  Sadly, this will likely never be possible.  And as a result, I am envious of the women below who will always be able to go swimming as the women they are....

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Three Accidents

A few weeks ago, BXM and I tried to get together, and she volunteered to pick me up at a Metro North railroad station - and to see me in male mode for the first time.  Since I've seen how some of my friends (including Lili, Vicki, and most recently WPB) make the he/she pronoun mistake (when relaxed) if they know me in both modes, I don't want this to happen with BXM.  So I declined her offer, and decided to wait until a night where we could get together with me in Marian mode.

On Thursday, I called BXM while driving home from the Scrabble game at WPB's house, and realized that I did the right thing for completely different reasons. BXM has had 3 accidents since we last talked with each other, none of them were completely her fault, but her actions in not reporting any of them to the police (2 hit and runs, and 1 rear ending) has put her in a position where no one will rent her a car.  (No, I'm not going to go into any more details here, because I don't want to give away any information that could be used to identify her.)  I do not consider her to be a safe driver, as her explanation of how she dealt with a problem on the road made me think that she's no longer quick enough with her thinking to stay on the road.

For all I know, she's still a safe driver with a lot of bad luck. But I don't want to take the risk of having her behind the wheel with me as a passenger - especially when she has to deal with the cognitive dissonance that will occur with me presenting as a male, but her knowing me as a female.  There is enough confusion possible, that cognitive overload would affect her ability to drive.  And I certainly don't want to add another person to the class of people, who when relaxed, think of me for a brief moment as a male - using the wrong pronoun at exactly the wrong moment.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

April Fool's Day

I never thought I'd catch one person, much less three with the "Dihydrogen Monoxide" joke.  But life never ceases to amaze me. 

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Shortly after getting to work, I started reading a New York Times article on April Fool's Pranks. I was reminded of the National Consumer Coalition against DMHO.  And I figured that I'd mention this substance to a coworker - and she bit at the gag.  This was the first time I got someone to bite - and it happened twice more in less than an hour.

Of course, I was at the office to work, and my current job is to learn as much as I can about the system for which I'm supporting implementations.  And with my boss out, the days go slowly, and I try to find things about the system I can learn without him being around.

Towards the end of the day, I got a weather alert.  The Weather Service expected high winds, dropping temperatures, and a touch of hail nearby. So, I let GFJ know about this before I left for home, and then got lucky - instead of getting the 6:45 pm train as expected, I was able to get the 6:15 pm train, and got home while the weather was quite comfortable.

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Tonight is not the night to prank GFJ - and I'll give her a call soon to let her know that the worst of the weather has passed.  Hopefully, the area of high winds will stay East of my place, so that we have a nice night tonight....

Friday, April 8, 2016

Scrabble with the ladies....

Scrabble - One of my favorite games since I was young.  And since I didn't have the usual game venue to go to tonight, my plans were to drive to WPB's after work, after changing into Marian mode, and enjoying a good hour or two of Scrabble with the ladies.

It took me longer than usual to get ready, as I had to rinse the subway sweat off my body before putting on my feminine garments.  Instead of making it to WPB's by 7:30 pm, it was closer to 8:00 pm.  Yet, everyone was on their first (and only) game, as all the ladies were gabbing away instead of playing their games.

The more I'm accepted into the world of women, the more I realize that women can be just as ignorant as men can be. We each root for members of "our tribes" to win, and we don't realize we are doing so because of tribal loyalty.  In many ways, I can understand this of women.  Group cohesion is essential for most women. Women have a lot more invested in social groups, and their position in society depends on the proper navigation between responsibilities to, and benefits from their social groups.

So I'm learning to walk a very fine line.  The group with whom I was to play a game of Scrabble broke up before a second game was played.  One woman was uncomfortable with my talk about the game, in part, because I knew what I was doing (and she didn't), and in part, because I was inadvertently disrupting her status quo...
After everyone left, WPB and I had a conversation that lasted an hour.  It's nice that she wants to keep me in her circle of friends.  We will never be "that" close, but it's good that I have another friend in the world of women.....

Thursday, April 7, 2016

The difference betwen men and boys.....

Elio Motors' P5 prototype vehicle. It was targeted to be in production by 2016, but it now looks like 2017 will be the year this vehicle hits the market.

Why do I mention this?

My plans for the day called for me to go to the Auto Show right after work and look for this car. (Technically, it may be classed as a motorcycle due to its 3 wheel design, but I'll call it a car until they have a better classification for the vehicle.)  When my coworker got in, she noted that she and her husband had plans to go to the show tonight, so I mentioned my plans....

When the day ended, the two of us trekked uptown on the 7th avenue line (a novelty for her, as she usually takes the 4th avenue line) to Times Square, and transferred to the Flushing line for the single stop to Hudson Yards.  From there, it was a short walk to the Javits Center where we went our separate ways.  (I'd have liked to meet her husband.  But it was just as well, as I wanted to see the car in the above picture, and he likely had his own agenda.) 

My first stop was at the best test ride of the day - at the Jeep demonstration area.  After the test ride, it felt like I just had a ride on a great roller coaster....

Yes, I had to listen to the sales patter.  But I was impressed by how this car handled harsh conditions.  (Too bad that Toyota's adjacent test ride wasn't as strenuous as this ride.  But they may still have the more practical car.)

Next, it was over to the Elio Motors station, where I had the chance to sit inside the prototype.  It's not a perfect car (yet) but I didn't feel as if the car was too small for me.  Snug, yes.  But not too tight.  I'd certainly want to take a few test rides before making a decision to buy a production model when it comes out in 2017.

While in the area, I took a few photos of some old police cars, including one from an old TV show - "Car 54, Where are you?"

I walked all over the place, and took a test ride in an electric BMW.  There's no way I'll buy a plug in vehicle from any firm other than Tesla, as I refuse to have a car with less than a 300 mile driving range.  (Mind you, until I move to a place with a private garage with electric outlet, there's no way I can have an electric automobile.)  Afterwards, I took a test ride in the Toyota Rav 4 - and considered it a boring ride after having been on Jeep's Roller Coaster.

Just before I left, I wished I could have attended in female mode (though this would have put the kibosh on Jeep's test ride, where I had to show id), as there was a contest from one magazine to have you take a selfie at the how - and you could win one of ten handbags. My Marian persona could use a new handbag.....