Friday, August 30, 2013

Halloween Idea!


Any of you who have spent anytime around Cyrsti's Condo know I'm a transgender veteran and a huge fan of trans vet Autumn Sandeen.  Autumn is always modest enough to play down her role as a transgender veteran trail blazer within the VA. But she IS and uniquely qualified to speak on navigating the VA system. Often very different than "civilian health care".

Recently she wrote a post called Transgressive Health Care for the San Diego LGBT Weekly, centering of course on the VA and trans vets. Here's an excerpt:

"Even though I’m a kind and joy-filled person, I’m always prepared to deal with inappropriate comments or behavior from the government-employed health care services workers. I’m always ready to ask why a medical doctor, nurse or technician’s bigotry is getting in the way of treating a veteran with respect to their service. Yet, I’ve never had even one treat me with anything but the purest of professionalism at the Veterans Health Care Administration (VHA) or at the Navy Medical Center, and I’ve never had to challenge anyone on their bigoted speech or behavior.
Here in San Diego, I just haven’t experienced that kind of inappropriate behavior. That I’ve never had difficulties with those who provide health care services to veterans, that I’ve never had anything but positive experiences with those health care professionals, actually makes me a bit proud of those VHA and of those Navy Medical Center, San Diego employees. Here in our city, these folk have all served me as a retired and disabled service member with honor, respect and professionalism."

I agree with Autumn's description of the system. My VA center (Dayton, Ohio) is probably much smaller in scope than some. Because of that my only problems have come from Dayton not having a full time endocrinologist in the center.  I had to get permission to go outside the system.  My dealings with the people have been remarkable. I do know that all you trans vets do not have the same story.

Autumn's latest post was very important to me as it describes her experiences with a mammogram. You can read it by following the link above. A mammogram needs to be in my future because my maternal grandmother died from breast cancer.

Not that I'm surprised but when she went in for the mammogram, the questions such as "when was your last period" or " how many times have you been pregnant" , had no other options than a number.  By the time she left though Autumn had voiced her concerns about not including options for transgender or intersex persons and she was getting the form changed.

Indeed I probably will face the same issues with the intake form when I go for a mammogram and I will make the same suggestions.

In my own small way, my goal is to try to change the system for the future.  From the way it's looking, there could be many more trans vets coming soon!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

I Loved Mud!

In my youth, the term "mud roller" was yet another term for certain girls that would...well...roll in the mud with you. Or so we thought.

Over the years, I became an admirer of mud rolling girls from afar. They carried a mix of independence, plus a touch of bad and a whole lot of attitude!

During all my pre transition relationships over many years, I was never able to really get to know a "roller" up close and personal. Oddly though, I always thought that deep down inside she was part of my soul.

She began to manifest herself in public during some of my earliest cross dresser meetings. Normally, I was the only non genetic girl there without a skirt or dress - much to the curiosity of the other participants. The comment was "I can wear pants all week long. Why would I want to wear them now?"  True, but as I came to realize, I wasn't cross dressing. I was expressing myself. I just didn't need the hose and heels to feel feminine. Jeans and boots were just fine!

Finding her wasn't easy.   But along the way, the more I transitioned the more the "roller" hung around for the ride and was very persistent today!

Here's what happened:

Approximately a week ago, I passed along a new fashion site I had discovered called Free People . I subscribed to their site and this morning on the first email I received, up pops a real live "mud roller" model.  Since a picture is worth a thousand words, I thought I would pass her picture along here in Cyrsti's Condo! (above right)

Fear and the "Immoral Right".

Stories like this just have to send denizens of the "immoral right" scurrying in fear. From the American Conservative:

"The billionaire retired U.S. Army colonel James Pritzker has announced he is a woman — Jennifer Natalya Pritzker. (left)  According to Crain’s Chicago Business, a memo dated Aug. 16 and sent to the Pritzker Military Library and Tawani Enterprises announced Pritzker’s name officially had been changed. “This change will reflect the beliefs of her true identity that she has held privately and will now share publicly,” the memo stated. “Pritzker now identifies herself as a woman for all business and personal undertakings.” Pritzker’s father was the late Robert Pritzker. Robert Pritzker founded Marmon Group, a manufacturing and industrial conglomerate. Her uncles founded the Hyatt Hotel chain."

For a hot second the right must have thought when Bradley Manning hitched his blond wig to the transgender coat tails they had a chance to gain on us again.

Thanks to Jennifer though, who decided to step up and not to be a "stealth queen", the immoral right was struck another blow. Plus, she is yet another transgender veteran.  Thanks Jennifer!

Cyrsti'sCondo "Quote of the Day"

This morning I was stuck in a huge line (not moving) waiting to pay for my coffee and I sent out a "S.I.S" alert:

S.I.S = Stuck in Stupid.

Cyrsti Hart

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

"TranSexy" Model Call

US clothing brand American Apparel put out a casting call for transgender and transsexual models in New York over the weekend for an upcoming campaign.

The open call for  ‘Transexy models" was posted on the companies  Instagram page  and said:  ‘American Apparel is looking for transgender/transsexual models. Ages 16 and up. No experience necessary. Wear simple fitted clothing that exemplifies your personal style and no visible makeup or hair products.'

I thought the last sentence was very interesting and love the "transexy" term which finally gives credit to the inner beauty of a transgender woman - taking a step away from the boy/girl runway models and stealth queens.

To Be or Not to Be Vietnam's Transgender Top Model?

Vietnam has a version version of America's Next Top Model which of course accepts transgender participants like Isis King and Virgg. (right)

Vietnam also has a problem now that transgender women such as Phuong Tran (below) are trying to break the trans barrier and compete on the show.

Here's the problem: So far, candidates have been excluded but the Performing Arts Agency will still have review and handle the cases.

The organizers of the Vietnam's Next Top Model are alleged to have violated the rules of their own. According to the rules of the program, the contestants must not be transgender. But there is more fine print:

Mr. Nguyen Thanh Nhan, from the Performing Arts Agency, said the Decree 79 on performing arts, fashion shows, beauty contests and modeling, in beauty contests--the contestants must have natural beauty, meaning no cosmetic surgery but the modeling contests do not have this provision. So the above rules on transgender participants are stipulated by the Vietnam’s Next Top Model organizing board.

What this means is The Performing Arts Agency has asked the organizers of the Vietnam's Next Top Model 2013 to explain about the participation of transgender contestants, which is a violation to the contest’s rules.

There of course is more on the VietNamNet Bridge site here.

We Got Mail!

I grabbed my hammer and screw driver and went down to out fancy high tech Cyrsti's Condo mailbox and found several quality comments- including one that said a post was "a load of crap".  That's cool, the bathroom here in the Condo is down the hallway on the left.

The others though were more informative and covered a couple different topics.

The first was on a subject near and dear to many of us, Halloween from Michellewhois:

"Ah Halloween that time of the year that so many look forward to. I for one used to look forward to it when I was younger. My first attempt to dress on Halloween was when I was 9 and dressed as the Fairy from the show Rocky and Bullwinkle -Fractured Fairy tales (talk about dating myself). The second years was as a princess. It was my female friend that helped me that year and she showed me how beautiful I was. Talk about memory lane."

Michelle, rumor has it I might remember Rocky and Bullwinkle! What a great costume idea and memory! Thanks!

Michelle also is a transgender veteran and weighed in on the Bradley Manning debacle:

"I spent 24 years in the military and lived with my Gender Dysphoria and not once ever felt the need to expose military secrets that I was aware of. I lived with fear of discovery, several beatings that I could never report and being ostracized by my "supposed" compatriots. I just recently read a news article, written by a a reporter who transitioned in the 90's. The article, brought out a very valid point of how Manning's declaration of being trans may hurt trans-folks that are still serving. Many of us were starting to see a glimmer of hope but now it may be the smoldering fire that will consume us. He (and I for one will never acknowledge HIM as anything but a HIM) has done more harm than just the release of classified information. He has solidified the trans community as something to be feared. The latest name is "TRANS-TRAITOR". It's hard enough for a trans-vets to get help while serving. Let alone having the military to use HIM as an excuse to further persecute trans on To "She" or not to "She" Chelsea"

As did Hailey:
"In all honesty, I think this story is doing much more harm than good to the trans community. The sooner it fades from the headlines, the better."

As you ladies know, I agree and I can think of nothing recently which has infuriated me more. I would suppose separating the gender issue completely out of the process, the scariest part of this to me was "back in the day" I encountered troops who were intellectually or emotionally unable to even cover me on a live practice range.  Now for one of those people to turn up and be a Bradley Manning was just too much.

He tried to take down TWO cultures, the military and now the transgender nation. Tragic.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Cyrsti's Condo "Horror Scope"!

Or should I say The Crysti's Condo Horror Scope since I am one those insufferable, overbearing fans of THE Ohio State Buckeyes and college football starts this week. Another huge fan of the Buckeyes, Bobbie, has been pushing me to mention them! She lives somewhere in the hitherlands of upstate New England and also is a groupie of one of the Mountain Men guys from Maine!

Before this whole post goes down in a ball of flame, here's the "scope" from theFrisky:

Libra (September 23-October 22): Be too busy with your friends to worry about where and what your relationship is doing. Not that it’s going to be so bad, but you will be best in group settings and it’ll make that special someone realize how vital you are. Avoid thinking of anything too personally, as intimate environments can get a bit smothering and could cause you to act up. Spread your love.

Ironically, this is about the third "scope" in a row that I'm "taking the fifth" and not commenting or telling you all what kind of "fifth"it is!

The next knock on the Condo door would be Bobbie with her shot glass wanting to share!

A "Lucky" Break?

This story proves my theory that in order to be "Lucky" you have to work hard to make it happen!

From The Hindu:

"For Lucky (left), life changed after a call from the channel, offering an opportunity to anchor the 30-minute crime news bulletin. “I was surprised at the chance to appear on television and was very apprehensive initially,” says the transgender who resides near Dhoolpet."

She went on to comment:

“This is an opportunity to prove that we are also equally talented,” says Lucky who has also participated in fashion shows at the national level. “There is no need for society to look down upon transgenders,” Lucky says, adding, “I hope my appearance on television will inspire my community to look at life and opportunities differently.”

You do indeed make your own luck!

Flying High with "Skyler"!

From Georgia and the Transadvocate comes this story about a young transgender girl by the name of Skyler. (left)

Unfortunately she doesn't represent the majority of transgender youth but she does symbolize what can happen in a loving understanding family with the resources to help. Here's a little background:

Skylar, is a twelve-year-old transgender girl in Georgia, who earlier had been denied use of the girls’ restroom at her school. (of course) But sometime later,  the administration had listened to reason and reversed the school’s decision. A few days ago, Skylar returned now is back to school and is being treated the same as the other girls in her classes.

From the article and the pictures, it seems Skylar is doing well and has gotten out ahead of the "puberty curve" with blockers which keep her from developing male characteristics. Which I understand are not permanent if later she decides the male to female transition process was not the right move.

In the meantime her story brings to mind a comment a person sent along to me recently about the feminine imprint genetic girls naturally receive early in life. The picture to the right of Skyler (center) her younger sister Sylvie and Jazz (another trans girl) seems to show a strong imprint.

Interestingly, the idea of the permanency of gender imprinting has come up in other discussions I have seen and been in concerning SRS transsexuals later in life. Do they indeed revert back to their male past on occasions? Is it bad and does the imprinting slowly fade like a bad tattoo?

Who knows? Depends upon the person.  The only certainty is having the freedom of gender choice and the resources to pursue the journey with care and guidance is special.  Unfortunately the door is closed so tightly to so many.

The "Bearded Stalker"

I decided to write a small follow up post to my "Queen" epic here in Cyrsti's Condo.  Which by the way elicited a comment from Brianna Austin about the quest to be a princess rather than a queen!

Depending on who you talk to, beard removal is one of the unpleasant, rather costly undertakings of transitioning male to female.Therein lies two of my problems and explains why I have not gone down the path of electrologist or laser treatments.

First of all, I don't have the spendable income to start the process and secondly I have a huge adversion to pain or discomfort!

Again, Momma Karma has dealt me a fairly decent hand.  I have never been a "Grizzly Adams" type person. The best facial hair I could ever really muster was in the "before" picture of me here in the blog. Now of course much of my facial hair is gray too which means laser removal wouldn't do much.

Now I view the process as a necessary evil of my transgender status and am careful to keep a smooth face. I have not however ruled out "hitching up my big girl panties in the future" and seriously getting involved in an electrologist program- when funds permit.

In the meantime, I just wanted to pass along a bit more information about my "bearded stalker".

Sunday, August 25, 2013

It "Ain't" Easy Being Queen Honey!

Ever hear one of those fabulous looking drag queens say "I would never be a woman full time, it's too much work?"

Well it is but again it isn't. I have had Cyrsti's Condo readers ask me how long it takes me to get ready on a regular basis to face the world.  Of course the answer varies as with any woman, on the place or places I'm going. As a rule of thumb, under 20 minutes to shave (yes I still do dammit) apply foundation, do my eyes and lips.

Again as with any woman, public prep work is of the essence.  I've gotten into the habit of having a nail file handy when I'm watching one of my favorite brainless "reality" shows. (My heart was broken when I found out Eustace of Mountain Men had a college degree and his wilderness was close to a fair sized town!)

HRT has done a reasonable job of cutting back my leg hair. With the lack of skirts and/or dresses I wear, I can normally go quite the distance between shaves. I do gain the time back though with the amount of extra time (and expense) now with my hair.

So, there you go.  Toss on my predetermined outfit (I hope), my ear rings and rings and I'm out the door. No big deal unless I'm going to a special event like doing drag at a drag show.

As we know, very few of us can "run with the queens" in appearance and this video illustrates one reason why: **Beware of typical "Drag Queen language ahead!  :

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Queen Chelsea?

What the hell, I swore to myself (or strongly suggested) I was going to leave this whole Bradley/Chelsea Manning thing alone. I have enough other faux aggravation going on right now. I was just a hot mess this morning. Hormones going nuts and crying to sappy songs on the radio. BUT!

I just couldn't resist passing this story along in Cyrsti's Condo :

"Once she gets past the rape thing, she will be a queen." It comes through TransAction and the DailyKos and was written by Mansfield Frazier who says he is a former federal prison convict.

I have to admit after seeing pictures of Manning in or out of his blond wig, I figured he was going to be someone's woman (or female dog)  in prison anyhow.

Go here to read "Frazier's" opinion on Manning's situation and what may happen when Chelsea is queened.

In the meantime, it's starting to rain and I think I may shed a tear.

Cross Dressing "Shorts"

Without getting too hung up in how "Elizabeth Stacey" labels herself on YouTube. Cross dresser, T-girl or what, she is worth a look on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen:

Cyrsti's Condo "Quote of the Day"

"It's not cheating until you get caught".  Ryan Braun and A.Rod.

All the Transition Possiblities

Quoting a great line I heard from another mtf transition video, "It's like learning to walk all over again". Here's another example of more "walking papers" on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen:

Transgender Veteran Reality

As you may have noticed, I have been more than a little passionate about the overall discrimination against transgender veterans in the United States military and the Bradley Manning debacle in particular.

I found a well put together video you may want to watch on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen:

Friday, August 23, 2013

Honey Boo Boo Drag?

Well, not the "Honey-child" herself in drag but the most famous white trash family in the country made a visit to a gay venue to play "drag bingo".

Here's the story through theFrisky:   "It’s a natural fit for a fierce 7-year-old who already has a stage name, wears hairpieces and knows how to read a bitch like a pro. TMZ reports that Uncle Poodle and Mama June took little miss Boo Boo to Hamburger Mary’s, a gay burger joint in Jacksonville, Florida to play Drag Queen bingo (where Mama June made her Bingo face, no doubt). Allegedly, so many Queens wanted autographs and photos that the Thompsons put out a beer pitcher as an impromptu tip jar and promised to donate the funds to a cyber-bullying charity. WERK! [TMZ] [Photo from
Hamburger Mary's]"

If that idea is not scary enough, how about a proposed duet with Boo & Rude ?  Ideal for a Halloween album or "Draggin the Dolla Store with your RudeBoo"?

Check out theFrisky link above!

To "She" or not to "She" Chelsea

I'm sure I'm not alone in my conflicted feelings about convicted "Wickileaks" soldier "Bradley/Chelsea Manning". Then again, I really don't have much of a conflict not supporting Manning's claim to prison supported HRT or whatever. Just because he claims to be gender dysphoric, does not mean I have to be on his side. I feel doubly insulted by him- as a trans vet and trans woman. Why?

My major problem  as a transgender Vietnam Era vet, I was one of a great many draftees who really did not agree with the "non-war" we were in. Most of us were able to serve out our time the best we could and made it home safely without resorting to Manning's actions.
Kristin Beck

My point is, who the hell is Manning to even slightly suggest his gender issues may have anything to do with his issues? Really?

It's always nice not to be alone. Here's what Kristin Beck (transgender retired Seal) had to say she has nothing but contempt for the Army private who blamed gender issues in part for leaking nearly a million classified documents. “Someone that does something like that, then uses an excuse to behave badly, is an amazingly poor human being,” said Beck, now a St. Petersburg resident, in a telephone interview moments before boarding an airplane."

For me to call Manning "Chelsea" or
"she" is an insult to the entire feminine gender- genetic or transgender.

Roberta Close

Roberta Close was born in Rio de Janeiro on 7 December 1964 and is a Brazilian model.  she was the first pre-operative transsexual model to have posed for the Brazilian edition of Playboy and  is probably Brazil's most famous transsexual woman. From Wickipedia:

"Roberta Close was born under the name of Luiz Roberto Gambine Moreira, and as an adolescent, began to adopt feminine attire and secretly began taking female hormone injections. By the age of seventeen, Close's career as a model and actress was beginning to take off. Close won the "Miss Gay Brazil" beauty pageant at the age of twenty. That same year, she made headlines and was dubbed "The world's most beautiful model". She has played a cabaret singer on a popular soap opera, starred in the 1986 movie Si tu vas a Rio... tu meurs, hosted a late night talk show, and was the inspiration for a hit song by Roberto and Erasmo Carlos.

In 1989, Close underwent sex reassignment surgery at Charing Cross Clinic in London, England. Afterwards, she appeared in an extensive photo spread in the Brazilian men's magazine Sexy, and was subsequently voted the "Most Beautiful Woman in Brazil."

This Cyrsti's Condo big screen video will give you an idea why!   ** Warning parts of this video have a dose of Brazilian "spice" and get the kids out of the room!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

My! How Things Change!

Every now and then I take a deep breath and try to look back at the blur of the last couple of years around here in Cyrsti's Condo. It's tough to go back through approximately 2500 posts and select a couple which really stand out.

This post was called "When Fetish Became Style" and may be familiar to many of you with similar early cross dressing experiences:

"Finally I realized my the years of looking at genetic women were different than the other guys around me and was obviously very confusing to me. From the earliest stages, most certainly my interest sexually was more fetish than anything else. But the feelings very quickly moved to a much deeper level.

In my teen years I dated a tall girl who always entranced me with how she slowly crossed her legs in my car. I wondered at the time why I wasn't more into her from a male sexual view point. Instead, I wanted to have those long hose covered legs teasing someone like she teased me. I know now she had a couple other factors in play other than just "teasing" me. Fashion in those days was the mini skirt so she was trying to sit in the car as modestly as the skirt would allow. Add in those long legs and the problem of snagging her hose on something and the process was not so easy for a person who was essentially a farm girl. Not to mention budgetary issues from buying new hose everyday!

As the years progressed panty hose became just a fashion accessory to me and movement became more important. Example?  I'm still working on the smooth all in one motion a woman uses when she slides into a seat and crosses her legs in one motion. Now, as most things do, fashion has gone full cycle and in the summer months, if a woman is wearing any kind of hose at all, my first reaction is she is a cross dresser or very old.

Quickly, the more I became involved in putting together a consistent style for myself, the more I looked for it in other women. I was helped along by the way I had viewed women in my entire life. An example is how I vividly remember watching how my Mom put on her lipstick when I was very young. I just happened to outwardly be her son not her daughter.

Also, the process began to carry with it an understanding of how both genders look at women. Men for obvious reasons and women just as obvious too. As with most things in life though, a woman's view of other women is much more complex and the old saying that "women dress for each other" is definitely true.

Now I feel going through that style process has led me to a greater understanding of my feelings of so many years ago. I simply was in a struggle to discover my own style in a feminine sense. Going deeper though, the whole process could have been one of the demarcation points between me identifying as a cross dresser or a transgender person?"

Good question, and one anymore I don't spend very much time thinking about.  Now I know "I yam who I yam" and that has to be good enough. But who the hell thought of this way to get here???

Archive "Picks"

Kenyon born and raised Biko Beauttah

                                                      Eva Robins (below)

Guys having too much fun at a woman less beauty pageant!!!

Cyrsti's Condo "Quote of the Day"

Sent along by Pat in response to a recent post "Why? Because it Is" :

"The Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr would seem to fit your posting. "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference."

Thanks Pat! The wisdom part is the toughest for me!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Androgyny in the Middle East

Interesting video from YouTube on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen which covers a lot of ground, androgyny, drag and Islam:

BoHo and the Bad Ass Girl

As fall approaches in my part of the world, of course fashion changes too. It's time to move my "boho" style (shown by model on left)....
 to more of a "bad girl" style with my black leather coat and boots. Shown by the model in the montage on the right.

I know what you are thinking already. "Look Cyrsti, you and I both can't and shouldn't attempt some of these looks, for any number of reasons." You are totally correct. If you are pencil thin and look like Andrej Pejic, I'm thinking you probably aren't reading this anyhow! I'm certainly neither and have the "age appropriate" fashion problems too!

What we all can do is adapt certain elements of the fashion trends to our own styles and then go deep discount shopping to find the pieces.

Remember, there is always a sale somewhere girls and I think all of these style challenges are one of the best parts of being a girl. Here's my saying "I may have not been able to pull it off but I shopped to death trying to do it!"

Here are couple of sites to further the cause Free People  and Betty Confidential to take a look at. Then if you are like me, here's the process I go through:
1.- Subtract the pieces which are age and body inappropiate.
2.- Subtract the pieces I can't afford.
3.- Check my closet for items which may be similar I can use.
4.- Value shop for new fashion appropriate pieces to add.

As I always say here in Cyrsti's Condo, thrift stores are great places to find classic adds to your wardrobe or make classic blunders.  One way or another you don't get classically hit in your finances.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Why? Because It Is What It Is.

As I interact this morning with my canine companion of over 12 years, I'm fairly sure I give her more credit for knowing what happens around here and the reason it does.  Of course she knows certain activities are going to happen like food, water, potty breaks and rides in the car. But as I understand it dogs don't have the reasoning power to understand why it does or doesn't. When.she doesn't get her ride in the car or her puppy treats, she doesn't reason why.

As so many of us have struggled over the years to understand the reasons behind our gender paths (cross dresser, transgender or transsexual) I began to think, are we like dogs? We really don't know why we are on this path, we just are.

As humans though, most of us do have the power to reason our way through the unreasonable. Speaking for myself, I wish I had all the time, energy and money I wasted attempting to figure out a reason returned. I went the self medicating alcohol route and the therapy route too Over the span of four decades I had four. One,  a waste, one incredible and two middle of the road. The middle of the road therapists faced the impossible task of encouraging me to look for what I didn't want to find anyhow. They did their job.

I have always disliked the phrase "it is what is is" but certainly in my life being transgender was what it was and I can only look forward to the future. Not cry about the spilled milk of the past. In fact I just spilled some of my cats milk on the kitchen floor and the dog is eagerly taking care of the mess.  She doesn't care why it's there. It just is and it's good!

Cross Dressing On Halloween

We have made it to the middle of August. A time when many cross dressers begin to look ahead longingly at the possibility of being the princess of their dreams at Halloween.

Indeed it's an exciting time if you do it right and as I have written here in Cyrsti's Condo, a Halloween party turned out to be the first true coming out party for me so many years ago.

If you are new to the cross dressing process, this video may help with a few "basics":

A Transphobic Pioneer?

For those "more mature" girls here in Cyrsti's Condo, the "dark ages" of information during our youth and longer is hard to remember. How did we exist back in those days without our cellphones and all the other electronic info devices we have today.  The answer is simple, unless you lived in a major metropolitan area, obtaining any information concerning your gender identity issues was tough to come by.

One of the first persons I discovered was Virginia Prince (left). As with most issues in our community Virginia is thought of in many different ways. On one hand she lived nearly 40 years as a woman but denied being a transsexual, which today could be considered transgender but also was perceived as being homo and transphobic.

None of that really mattered to me as I eagerly read her first couple of books including the "The Transvestite and His Wife"- and never showing it to my wife who knew I was a cross dresser.  Shortly after that in the early 1990's I began to attend far away Tri Ess meetings, a  nearly 150 mile one way trip and subscribed to Transvestia. Published by Virginia.  Ironically, I benefited so much from many of the exact problems she had with others. Transsexuals in particular.

Very quickly I found there were several groups within a group at the so called hetero cross dresser "only" meetings.  One of the "groups" would always separate from the main bunch in the hotel we met at and go to the nearest gay venue. Those evenings included some of my first contacts with the diverse subculture I was in including transsexuals and drag queens. Let's just say I had a fairly good idea a portion of the group were not completely "hetero" cross dressers. I loved the diversity of the group.

Then as today, I do think of Virginia Prince of one of the gender pioneers in my life. She opened my world, although I did view her as a throwback to my stodgy old grandmother.

If you don't know much about her, Dallas Denny has written an excellent in depth look at her life. To take a look, go here.

Monday, August 19, 2013

One Picture Worth a Thousand Words

From Allentown Pa. Pride Day:

Cyrsti's Condo "Horror Scope"

Gaze into my Cyrsti Ball
The "scope" for we Librans this week isn't as exciting as last weeks', but anytime I read something about "making waves" I'm all in!

Libra "(September 23-October 22): Your paranoia about the future can get scary at times, but remember, nothing is set in stone and the more expansive and positive you make your options, the better your odds for a pleasant outcome. After all, white-knuckling security now isn’t going to get you anywhere. So, create some waves. Life can easily work out by just choosing for it to."

There is a "scope" for you too,  here at theFrisky!

I've Had my Shots!

I'm not shy about telling a curious or standoffish person "I've had my shots and won't bite unless provoked". Normally, it's quite the ice breaker and the other person finds it humorous or heads for the other side of the room.

As of a couple days ago though, I did have all my shots, fluid levels checked and tires kicked at my local veterans administration clinic. For some reason recently Momma Karma has been kind with me on my doctor visits. A day after I called whining about my back pain, the nurse asked if I could come in about an hour because my new doctor had an unexpected cancellation. My social calendar was empty and there I was at the clinic looking androgynous as I do complete with my long pony tail flowing from the back of my hat.

As I have written before here in Cyrsti's Condo, this first visit to my VA Doc was not without potential problems.  My previous Doc rubber stamped my HRT scripts from my endocrinologist so I could get them filled inexpensively with my VA copay.  There was no guarantee my new guy would.

To make a long story a bit shorter, he prodded my back and gave me some ideas on over the counter meds to alleviate the pain.  I wasn't sure if I or he would bring up the very prevalent estrogen meds in my prescription list. So as he was going down the line and mentioned the "Spiro" I was taking, I jumped in and said "maybe I'm your only transgender patient and this is how the deal was working with my former Doc". It turns out he has absolutely no problem with continuing the program and even wrote down for me a few specifics to make it easier.

I left the clinic that day thinking he may just be the best doctor I have ever had and not just because he would refill my HRT meds. Very unusual for a doctor to have such wonderful communication skills.

On the way home as I stopped to pick up generic pain meds, I can't say the back felt much better then. I thought it would sooner though with the weight off my shoulders worrying about my HRT scripts being filled - and you know it has!

So yes, I have been folded, prodded and stuck but for the time being looking to stay around for awhile.

Cyrsti's Condo Quote of the Day

"The hardest person to out run or hide yourself"

Cyrsti Hart

Sunday, August 18, 2013


Perhaps you have heard of the protests in our community in Portland, Oregon over a production called Tranny Thursdays.  These excerpts come from PQ:

"Criticism of a new Portland play (read: sex) party called “Tranny Thursdays” is exposing tensions in the trans community over language, identity, and public image. Promotional materials for the monthly event promising “private, intimate, discrete time with Trannys” have sparked confusion regarding the intended audience, objections to the use of a word considered a slur by many, and concern with the “Ladies Night Out” take on gender dynamics.

“No more grubby bookstores or seedy adult theaters!” writes promoter and host Sasha Scarlett (aka Joshua Ryan, who identifies as a drag queen/gender illusionist). Scarlett, who also produces the Portland Erotic Ball and runs a media company, says she launched the play party after some of the “‘straight’ men” she’s dated asked her to do more “trans/gender-flexible events.” “I have been exploring my sexuality and have met other trans-identifying gurls and their admirers,” Scarlett tells PQ. The party is “intended to allow people interested in talking, mingling, becoming acquainted"

Huh? Talking, mingling, becoming acquainted? Do the "gurls" bring a covered dish or just plenty of protection? How many of you have frequented adult book stores or seedy theatre's recently to find "friends"?

When is the gay male Rude Paul attached community going to wake up and quit the gender slurs? You have to give credit to Ryan on hitting all the slurs:  "Trans identifying gurls"? Gurl or Grrl or whatever is a fetish centered cross dresser to me and absolutely sends me into orbit when someone calls me any of those. I have worked hard to educate all those around me that I am not any of them or a drag queen. To each their own but it's bad enough when I see the distasteful fetish guys in drag photos on line.  I can only wonder "what were they thinking?" Is it any surprise when "admirers" come knocking who are looking at me as some motel room babe his wife won't find out about?

Ryan should have aptly included  "she male" term which would have been more appropriate than the other terminology.

Here's the deal, it's just a blatant money grab at our expense. One big clue is where it is being held. The Velvet Rope (formerly Angel’s Social Club), is described as a Southeast Portland club equipped with hot tubs, a “gang bang area,” a dungeon, and private rooms, as well as a social space with pool tables and food. Admission is free for “gurls” but $35.00 dollars for "admirers". A step up from grubby book stores or adult theaters?

Excuse me, I have to go. This is so greasy and disgusting I have to go take three showers to get the dirt off.

Classic Female Impersonation

On the Cyrsti's Condo big screen, Danny La Rue:

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Carmen Carrera Photo Shoot

Perhaps by now you have heard of or seen the beautiful transgender model/actress  Carmen Carrera. (right)

If you have or haven't, it's worth your time to go here to check out the WMagazine chorus girl photo shoot.

I have posted two of approximately 12 pictures as a sample here at
Cyrsti's Condo.

Living the Dream

One of my two thousand eighty eight pet peeves is when I ask someone "how you doing" and they say "I'm here".  Not good karma! I'm finally to the point of saying you may want to see if there are any openings in the cemetery down the street. Now the newest come back is "I'm living the dream" which is much better to me. In many ways I am living the dream right now.

If you would have asked me ten years ago if I would have the life I have today, I would have never thought it possible for good and bad reasons. Then again, dreams do get mixed in with nightmares.

The bottom line is I don't believe in luck but I do believe in opportunities and everyone has a "glass ceiling" of sorts.  Somehow you are given the cards to get to a certain point in your life. How you play those cards decides your life. Very simply, transgender cards were dealt to me early in my life and I had to opportunity to play them later on.

Playing my cards now is simply a way to break my gender glass ceiling and live a dream. The only problem is at 63 (almost) I don't feel even close to getting up from the table.  Has to be another dream I can buy with my cards, right?

I have picked a video to play on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen of another transgender person who is playing her cards. Enjoy!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Trans Leak

A photograph of Wikileaks leaker Bradley Manning wearing makeup and a blonde wig was released yesterday by the army as part of documentation related to Manning's trial.

It's the first such photo of Manning, who is transgender. The photograph was attached to emails Manning had sent to a therapist, Capt. Michael Worsley, and an NCOIC, Sgt. Paul Adkins, about gender identity, in which the army private expressed a belief that a career in the military might "get rid of it."

Manning's lawyers introduced the email to Adkins and accompanying photograph as part of the trial.

Not the best of a public relations coup for the transgender nation.

I guess you have to be careful what you "leak" because old pictures may come back to haunt you!

It Does Get Better

You probably have heard of the It Does Get Better public relations effort which began some time ago to reach out to TGLB youth. Nothing is more tragic to me than the stories of trans kids who are subjected to extreme bullies and ignorant families. Ultimately suicide is the only answer for some.  So sad! Despite the age difference, most of their problems are similar to ours.

The fact remains though, what does and doesn't the campaign mean to the "more mature" transgender age groups? Actually everything and then again not so much. Bottom line in any self help campaign is : "what does it do for me?"

In essence we are still our parents trans kid peeking out from the closet to see what's going on. The problem is, the closet over the years has become very full of the baggage we have accumulated. We have painted our self into a corner of the closet with few alternatives. Such as these simplified examples:

Number One is going down with the ship. You have hidden your gender issues for so long, what's the problem with a few more?

Number Two are the final solutions. You can't stand the pressure anymore and you check out with suicide or you go ahead come out before you harm yourself.

Number Three is cautiously checking the waters. and slowly come out into the world.

No matter of age, the only way anything gets better is effort. Check the link above for effort on the highest level!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

We Got Mail!

Our fancy high tech Cyrsti's Condo mailbox has been jammed full of responses lately.

 From Shelle  :"It is always risky to play in any part of the girls sandbox for girls like us, we are likely on most occasions to dig up something similar to what a cat may have buried there." True!! I'm afraid I have had some of the "buried treasure" dug up and tossed at me too but over the years I think I'm learning a little about how the cat fights too! What's that television slogan I'm seeing now? "Men fight wars, women wage battles."

Then to a couple comments on our FtM post. The first from Paula: " It is a great shame that so often the F to M seem too be ignored by the "T Community" I sometimes wonder just what sort of community it might be."  I used to think that too Paula. Sometimes now I believe the trans men are the force now in our community. What has helped me are the discussions I have had with my trans guy friend Draco. I wonder too what the future holds for the women and men of the transgender community.  For whatever reason I think stealth still hurts our side of the group more than the guys but I have absolutely no solid evidence to base my idea.  Let's call it trans woman intuition!

Finally, on the same FtM subject, Pat commented:
Many years ago I had a matter which called for some research into the medical issues involved in TS surgery. I recall finding one article in the medical literature written by a surgeon who did both MtF and FtM surgery and I will never forget this quote, "It is easier to dig a hole than plant a pole"

All you can say is all those years of medical school paid off for that surgeon!

Thanks to all of you girls! and guy!

Lauren Harries

Lauren Harries, 34, is reportedly entering the Celebrity Big Brother house. According to The Sun, Lauren - who had a sex change in 2001 - is on a list that includes Louie Spence and Mr Motivator. The former child star first found fame as an antiques expert when she was a boy called James - as anyone who saw the 12-year-old's appearance on Wogan back in 1990 will recall. Since then, Lauren has been a regular on numerous TV shows, including guest spots for Big Brother's Bit On The Side and she also speaks on transgender issues.

Having all the Big Brother fun across the pond?

Transgender Feminism

Have you ever considered how feminism effects us as transgender women? Does it at all and are we accepted if we try to participate?

On some levels we are met with a resounding NO by the more radical of the feminists who view us as little more than impostors. On other levels YES by those who need whatever political clout we can offer.

Truly over the years I have believed in total equality between the genders. Back in the day when men of my age bracket were being drafted to fight in the non war no one wants to remember, I perceived the process of blatant gender discrimination. Men and women both should have been drafted! All in all though the process turned out to be another dose of my wonderful male privilege!

Of course I read loads of the feminist posts and do believe in equality but I wonder if once again as a trans woman how much really effects me? I just don't read much from genetic feminists mentioning the enormous injustices we are subjected to. Regardless of our birth genders the rift seems too wide to cross. Certainly we deserve the same amount of money as men for the same job...if we can get one at all.

Recently I received an invitation to a dinner/speaker local "Women in Government" meeting. The invite gave me a chance to consider if I wanted to shell out the 25 dollars to hear the speaker and the possible consequences if I went.  Per norm I certainly would have been the "one of a kind" person in the room with a chance to network the transgender culture. All the warm and fuzzies to be sure but would it have been the time to ask the women in government about their views of transgender feminism? Undoubtedly not what the participants would have expected I'm sure.

So, I didn't go and in some senses felt bad about not doing it. I do however have a couple other avenues I'm considering such as an youth TGLB group in town.  They of course are always looking for help.

In today's world, everyone tries to protect and build their own little hill of sand including the genetic feminists. It's another part of the girls sandbox I'm not sure of wanting to play in.

The Elephant in the Corner

In this case our Cyrsti's Condo pachyderm in the pink tutu has her hand out.

As far as I can tell there are three basic ways you can "finance" your blog:

1.-not at all- no ads
2.-ads which do pay the blogger a minimal percent based on factors such as people "clicking" on them.
3.- the "tip jar" where you are encouraged to make a donation.

Of course you have seen the ads on my blog. In fact there is probably one flashing at you right now. Do I like them? No. Do I need them? Yes I do make a minimal amount when and if you think they are compelling enough to look at. Yes I do value the minimal amount I make. Finally, no I don't have very much say in which ad's they are.  Truly I might if I was smart enough to learn the system more.

Speaking of the almighty "system", it is bigger than the elephant in the corner.  "Back in the day" I basically played with starting blogs on a Word Press format and here on Blogger. As time went along, my very limited idea of the technical side of a blog led me here and off of Word Press.  Nothing they did...just me.

Occasionally I think about updating the format/template I work off of here. There are many and I see several pros and cons of maybe attempting an "upgrade" of sorts which will allow us to "grow" here. So we will see. Obviously I'm paranoid about doing something dumb and not being able to recapture the work I have done.

In the meantime, I figured I would fill you in about the pink tutu which is not mine. Mine is purple!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

And You Thought this was Easy?

No silly's not writing Cyrsti's Condo. As any blogger will tell you, be careful before a labor of love, hope and understanding becomes a job! Some days I have writers and world block and keep asking my dog for ideas. I'm sure you remember several of those posts and thought "just what the hell was she thinking?"

I'm sure videos must be the same and even worse from the technical end and here's an example. This drag queen looks good doing it too!

Boxers and Binders and Street Signs

All too often here in Cyrsti's Condo I feel as if I don't mention the "other" side of the transgender street, the trans men.

Trans guys should be mentioned if for no other reason in my part of the world, FtM guys are becoming very dynamic and public. Dare I say the testosterone effect may play a part?

I have always wondered about the different dynamics both genders face when we decide to "jump fences" if you will.  The shallow comparisons come in the form of changing appearances which seem to favor the trans guys.  It's easier to masculate a body than feminize one after puberty.

On a deeper level is the question of gender privilege. I prefer not to discuss privilege again but to simply say it's in the mind of the beholder and in the imaginations of certain groups. I do follow the "other side of the street" closely and my latest "discovery" is Anthony Doubek's blog and writings "Boxers and Binders"

When I read Anthony's thoughts, I invariably come up with all kinds of questions such as - is there any division in the trans male community being identified with the lesbian/butch group?  I do understand that after a certain point in the FtM transition process the groups would naturally separate. Furthermore, I'm always on the outlook for signs of the perpetual bickering which goes on here on our side of the street.

For a closer look at the "other side of street" go here and check out Anthony Doubek!

I Lost my Keys

Or should I say I lost my keys again.

Momma Karma just beats me up in the key department because of all the time I spent in my life as a guy making fun of women losing their keys. Of course when an object such as a set of keys was dropped into the black hole of many of the purses I saw, it's no wonder the keys never came out. I marveled at the absolute courage of the woman carrying the purse to even stick her hand in there at all.  Haha.

I more than likely don't have to tell you where I'm going with this. When all of the sudden my life on the run moved from a simple billfold to a purse with all of life's needs...I too can't find my damn keys. You organizational freaks don't have to pile on me here.  Rumor has it, I'm not the most organized person -seemingly like a ton of women I have known. So yes I could get it all organized for at least a day or two.

You rational folks don't have to pile on me either. I did upgrade to a bigger key chain but after all, a girl still has to be stylish and not carry a foot long piece of wood with her keys on it.

Plus I do have an excuse to throw in. I'm old dammit!

Oh well, what goes around comes around and often it picks up speed when it does.  I just hope I'm quick enough to grab my keys on the way by!

Cross Dressing Cuties

On the Cyrsti's Condo big screen a video called "cross dressing men"

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Cult of Cross Dressing

Several years ago when I still couldn't claim being young, I still could claim to be naive in the ways of certain on line transgender women's groups called "trans nazi's" ( a label I borrowed ). Most were of the SRS variety.

As you probably have guessed by now, I'm not above "stirring the pot" on occasion. One evening I succeeded well with the comment "aren't we all cross dressers?". Very quickly all the trans nazi pedestal sitters jumped down to berate such heresy in their realm.

These days I'm much older and mellower and let the trans trolls alone, but....yes I still believe we are all cross dressers of different stages and ilk. No matter how many operations and how many chemicals you ingest, the greatest majority of us came out of the womb as one of the binary genders...externally. From whatever age we start, we cross dress to match the world with our inner gender clocks ticking away in our noggins. Which brings me to another point.

The good old self destructive hierarchy in our community. You know, TS's TG's and then CD's. I fired the group up one night when I told them their "system"  is a patriarchal  bleed through of the worst kind from their male genders.  Not unlike, hey look what I bought! No it's not a Corvette, it's a vagina! Until you get your own, well don't talk to me in your beat up old Chevy.

Not a popular position with the girls and again I learned very early my rather comfortable position as a middle of the road transgender girl wasn't good enough for a seat at the transsexual table and was too good somehow to sit with the cross dressers. How dare I attempt to live my life as a woman without all the sacrifices of surgery?

As you have also guessed by now, I don't spend a lot of time worrying about what others think of me and I do know that so many of us have had to fight tooth and nail for any public feminine existence we can achieve.  Unless you are a "natural" you need to use your time as a cross dresser to discover what is really going on inside of you.

Plus,none of us should care about the silly labels anyhow!

**Most of the definitions are from the "Urban Dictionary".

Where Do I Vote?

Actually I can't vote for Janet Rice. She is running for office in Australia and I am running to the store in Ohio.
She rides the "mayorial bike" to work, is a proponent of ending climate change (with a degree) and oh, by the way just happens to be married to Penny.  Penny went through SRS sometime ago and now the two are a happy legal same sex marriage in Australia with two sons:

Monday, August 12, 2013

Cyrsti's Condo "Horror Scope"

I like this one! :

Libra, (September 23-October 22): Your magnetism will be unstoppable, which can throw you into a tailspin, as hotness will surround you too. Whatever, a little heat never hurt anybody, least of all you. So, shift into fearless mode and learn to juggle, as you won’t be satisfied until ever inch of your body and minute of your time gets occupied with danger.

I hope one person in particular doesn't read this!  To read your scope go here to theFrisky.

"C" Words.

Recently I have a couple of individuals who were kind enough to call me courageous because of how I live my transgender life. Here is a portion of my reply to one of the comments:

"As far as courage goes, I appreciate the kind words but courage goes a little too deep in any description of me. While I appreciate the compliment,  to me an act of courage is reserved for people such as first responders and military service members. On the other hand I feel I was simply a member of circumstance."

Then I begin to think the process through and came up with another "C" word -  cowardice.  Well maybe cowardice is a little too harsh. I didn't turn tail and run but for any number of reasons I was afraid to face the obvious in my life. I was transgender. Then, when I finally came to owning being trans , I had to choose what to do.

Choices of course have their own set of issues. How to proceed with HRT was a huge one! Even bigger though was the choice of owning myself and the fact I have always been this way.

Perhaps you have heard the term "you can't love another until you love yourself". Similiarly I learned until I accepted myself as a transgender woman ,  others couldn't chose to do the same. It's a process I still face today.  On occasion I so do want to run away and hide from the public as I did in my cross dressing years. Then again was I really cross dressing or just learning the ropes of my non birth gender?  Doesn't matter, The certainty I know is I have found me and I'm home.

If I was really good here I would come up with some sort of fancy equation such as Courage+Choice+Certainty = Ownership.  Then again it's utterly impossible to even consider pushing us all into the little round or square holes we have so desperately tried to climb out of!

Finally, how can I forget (cause I'm old?) two other "C" words...Cyrsti's Condo!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Jamie Clayton Classic Video

Quality not the best but worth another look on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen:

The Switch

Over the years you have probably seen this title used in many different productions. Now is there is a new one in the works which features a transgender transsexual woman (Su)  you may have seen before. I'm passing along a link to their Facebook page here. My understanding is this the pilot for the proposed show. Every once in a while when I post a promo such as this in Cyrsti's Condo, I will hear back from the production group with more info. If I do, I will pass it along!

Medicine and the Speed Wrench

For years the mere thought of the comment "Take your medicine" had negative connotations. From Mom's not so pleasant reminders to meetings with bosses over the years following terrible sales or profit periods.

Now the whole idea is not so negative as I am finally back into my HRT groove. Again I'm busy lining up all the little guys, aided by different shapes, sizes and colors. A few, I wonder if I can even swallow and others are so small I can barely believe they do anything at all.  Plus the really good news is I can afford any of it at all.

Ironically,  my biggest struggles now are the containers themselves.  I almost had to take a screwdriver and speed wrench (hammer) to a very tough little pill container which looked like one of the old birth control containers. All in all a very male response to a very female problem.  But then I did calm down and actually read the instructions, figured it out and opened it correctly.  Maybe the hormones or socialization is working?

It's true that life is a circle from birth to death.  Perhaps the transgender circle isn't perfectly round? If it isn't, I can fix that.  Get me my "speed wrench! No, bring me the small one. The original one became entirely too heavy!

"Taking my medicine" must be working!


On the Cyrsti's Condo big screen:

Now We Went and Did It!

More than likely when you were a kid, you were told not to do something and off you went to see if the consequences were going to be as bad as predicted.

Sure thing! That hot stove burner did hurt!

Are we now in a similar situation as the transgender nation? Recent developments may indicate yes. During the past week, names such as Don Ennis, B. Scott and now Phillip Porter have made the headlines as some sort of former or current transgender women.

To start with, I don't believe in a former transgender person. If you are-you are.  I certainly do believe however,  in those who don't understand their inner gender and eventually change. Free choice is good choice if it's your choice.

All of this new transgender "news activity" does lead me to wonder though how it individually effects me and others.  Just as we were starting to turn the corner with positive public information, will I now have to deal with those who think I'm doing all of this as some sort of a lark?  When I'm done "playing girl" like Ennis or Porter, will I just go back to my "comfy" life as a guy?

No it won't. If it keeps up, what it could do is change my educational approach as a public transgender woman. Interestingly (or not) I actually have transitioned from my part time cross dresser status to my current self in front of more than a couple people who have followed the process without knowing or asking much about me. Right or wrong I believe much of what they see in the media possibly could reflect on me..."Hey is Cyrsti like that? Will we all of the sudden see him in the future?"

One way or another all of this totally out of my control. I was just wondering if that burner on the stove is still hot?

Lists that Should be Listed

Following is Princeton Review’s list of the 20 most TGLB-friendly colleges and universities in the U.S.:
 1. Emerson College (Boston, Mass.)
 2. Warren Wilson College (Asheville, N.C.)
 3. New College of Florida (Sarasota, Fla.)
 4. Stanford University (Stanford, Calif.)
 5. University of Wisconsin-Madison (Madison, Wis.)
 6. Oberlin College (Oberlin, Ohio)
 7. Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering (Needham, Mass.)
 8. Smith College (Northampton, Mass.)
 9. New York University
 10. Bryn Mawr College (Bryn Mawr, Pa.)
 11. Wellesley College (Wellesley, Mass.)
 12. Bennington College (Bennington, Vt.)
 13. University of Chicago
 14. Yale University (New Haven, Conn.)
 15. Carleton College (Northfield, Minn.)
 16. Sarah Lawrence College (Bronxville, N.Y.)
 17. Macalester College (St. Paul, Minn.)
 18. Pitzer College (Claremont, Calif.)
 19. Marlboro College (Marlboro, Vt.)
 20. Grinnell College (Grinnell, Iowa)

 The list of most LGBT unfriendly schools is largely a repeat of last year with 16 returning schools and four replacements (in bold):
 1. Grove City College, (Grove City, Pa.)
 2. Hampden-Sydney College (Hampden-Sydney, Va.)
 3. College of the Ozarks (Point Lookout, Mo.)
 4. Wheaton College (Wheaton, Ill.)
 5. University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, Ind.)
 6. Brigham Young University (Provo, Utah)
 7. Wake Forest University (Winston-Salem, N.C.)
 8. Calvin College (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
 9. University of Rhode Island (Kingston, R.I.)
 10. University of Dallas (Irving, Texas)
 11. Texas A&M University (College Station, Texas)
 12. Baylor University (Waco, Texas)
 13. Trinity College (Hartford, Conn.)
 14. Auburn University (Auburn, Ala.)
 15. Colgate University (Hamilton, N.Y.)
 16. Wofford College (Spartanburg, S.C.)
 17. Hillsdale College (Hillsdale, Mich.)
 18. Catholic University of America (Washington, D.C.)
 19. Pepperdine University (Malibu, Calif.)
 20. University of Wyoming (Laramie, Wyo.)

** The Princeton Review reports the top 20 colleges in these and 60 other categories in the 2014 edition of its book “The Best 378 Colleges,” published annually since 1992.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Transgender Heroines and Monika

To discover a wonderful selection of international interviews with various transgender iconic women and more, check out one of our international "blog link sisters"  in Cyrsti's Condo Monika Kowalska! Or go here.


Phillip Porter and the Privilege Game

I just saw this story this morning (Sat) and assuming it's all true, Phillip Porter may have played one of the most classic privilege shell games ever.

The headlines just scream attention: "Phillip Porter former Transgender Woman and NFL Cheerleader". Phillip just happened to also mention he was a topless dancer too. So if you consider living a glamorous public life as a beautiful woman as "privilege" he had it all.

Why the change? Phil's self proclaimed "mid life crisis". As all genetic women know, at a certain point NFL Cheerleader looks will fall behind and menopause moves into the lead - and as you guessed, Phil decided he probably didn't want any of the hot flashes and fun effects of being a mid life woman.

No gold stars are given out here kids. I'm guessing Phil jumped from a very bleak male privilege situation while the getting was good (and doable evidently) into the female situation and when the going looked to be rough jumped back.

Why? Because he could I guess and I'm fairly sure there are a number of us who would take the easy way out and do the same thing. Let me pull out my SheZow ring and say the magic phrase and I'm a girl until the fun stops and then i'm a guy.
I think the cheer leading photos of Phil's will be interesting when they appear. If they do because of NFL copyrights.  So far I have only been able to find this video and article on the Huffington Post Gay Voices. for you to see.

Who knows, the story could be as interesting as Phil dancing topless?

Transgender Military Feature

"After DADT": (Don't ask, Don't tell)  The New Civil Rights Movement all this week  is featuring exclusive articles from current and former transgender U.S. service members. Here's one of the stories with a happy ending from a Naval transgender service member who did come out on the job:

"The (my) XO didn’t care. My department head told me the XO’s response was, “I have enough to worry about with all the people who can’t or won’t do their jobs. Why the hell should I get rid of someone who’s doing their job really well?” I felt an immense sense of relief. I am safe for now, as long as I have these leaders and keep my performance up. Everyone seemed to agree–why kick me out if being transgender isn’t affecting my performance? Maybe this is why I was meant to reenlist; to show people that transgender people can be in the military and do their jobs just like anyone else. I just hope someday that this policy will be lifted, and we can serve openly."

Go here to read more!

Friday, August 9, 2013

The New "T" Scott

B. Scott now  accepts the descriptor "transgender." Read on:

"Wikipedia defines Transgender as the state of one’s gender identity (self-identification as woman, man, neither or both) not matching one’s assigned sex (identification by others as male, female or intersex based on physical/genetic sex).

 It is by that definition that I accept and welcome the ‘transgender’ label with open arms" 

You have probably heard by now B. Scott  is filing a multi million dollar lawsuit against BET and Viacom following the decision to force her to change to male clothes for the 2013 BET Awards Pre-Show. As she should!

In a further statement from her site B. Scott wrote: my spirit truly lies somewhere in between. It is that same spirit that has allowed me to become so comfortable in my skin, choose how I express myself, and contributes to how I live my day-to-day life.

From my own selfish viewpoint, I'm glad she clarified where she stands. After I saw B. Scott on the Chef Roble show, transgender was not one of the labels I would have used.

Follow the Bouncing Gender Balls

No silly's not those balls! By now you have probably seen the story of the ABC News guy (Ennis) who decided he wanted to be a girl and then made up all kinds of crazy stories of why he was wrong and rejoined the male camp.
He is not alone, not long ago I viewed part of a YouTube video which included a segment on "Walt" who went through SRS, lived as a woman and decided he was wrong and rejoined the world as a guy.

I believe all of this is good.  Sure, we are always going to have the naysayers who point to Walt or Ennis as proof any gender change is wrong, immoral or whatever. On the other hand we transgender folks know this is not a decision to be taken lightly. These two guys were proof of it!

So much of a life can be enriched or destroyed by the gender transition process it's scary- or should be. You Cyrsti's Condo's regulars know one of my main "soapbox" preaching points is you damn well better get out in the world and socialize yourself as a woman to the best of your ability. Before you decide.  More than likely the feminine life is not entirely the "walk in the park"  you thought it would be. Ask any genetic or fully transitioned trans woman.

The moral to the story is , if you are similar to me in the past and think your cross dressing may be a symptom of something deeper, you need to do all the research you can on it, up to and including living it. At that point, no matter what anyone says, the door should be open for you to come back. Even for Ennis and Walt..."let em live."

Chasing my Hormonal Tail

About two weeks or so ago as I was rummaging through my not so organized Cyrsti's Condo medicine cabinet and noticed a real disparity in my on hand inventory of the magic blue pills called Estradiol (a generic estrogen) as well as a couple other of my VA co-pay provided meds. I called the 800 line to find out when the refills were due to be shipped and found I would have a real estro shortage.   Being the clueless person I am, I was taking what I thought I was prescribed rather than what really was.  In my defense I was working from two different scripts too.

I didn't want to, but I went on lesser dosages for the last month as I waiting for back ups to arrive.  In fact I hate it.  I'm not so pleasantly surprised how quickly my "T" wants to reclaim as much of my phsyical being as quickly as it can. Body hair and muscle definition began to return, my breasts lost quite a bit of their sensitivity and even my thought processes seemed to change. So I was not the happy camper as I waited for my med refills.  Well, they came yesterday and came in a big way.

For security reasons at my mailbox, I have them sent to my daughters and on the way home I had so many bottles of pills, I figured if I got pulled over by a cop I would have been arrested!

By now I know you are thinking Cyrsti what is the problem here?  Actually there is.  The supply I received is large because it is written to last a while and when I follow the correct dosage, everything is fine. Of course what my Endo Doc said he was going to prescribe isn't what he actually did and of course the Veterans Administration pharmacy works from him. So no, the dosage is too small and we are not fine!

Not to worry, I do have the whole process to revisit soon anyhow. I need to schedule blood work from the VA and hand carry to the endo doc's office to insure it gets there and then calmly ask why the hell is he saying one thing and writing another? Assuming he does write what we agreed on this time (I now know what to look for on the script)  then I  take it back to my new primary provider at the VA for approval who will then have me sign off again on a release form from the Endo Doc to fill the scripts. Then I have to set up an appointment in Sept with my new VA provider (who I have never met) to check my overall well being. (Sinking fast!)

It's fine, I really don't have anything else to do anyhow, right? Plus I know this HRT path I walk would not be feasible without the VA's help-no matter how convoluted the system is. Just maybe if a few steps were cut out of the process, life would be easier but then again a lot more boring?

We Got Mail!

High Dollar/High Tech!
Our Cyrsti's Condo high tech mail box received a couple of well thought out and presented replies recently from Alexis Michelle. The first is a comment concerning the personal and financial cost of a transgender existence:

"Expensive is so true. My whole journey has cost me a great deal of time, torment and troubles, not to mention the financial aspects. And I totally feel that the non-calculable mental costs far outweigh any financial burdens associated with my life of transition. I went through my own personal 'hell' for many, many years as I tried to keep my thoughts and feeling buried within and still project the image of a "normal" person.

What I went through I would not wish on my worst enemy. Finally I came to a point where I felt I had two choices--first of all, start opening up to others about my turmoil. Secondly, I was so close to just ending it all more than once. Luckily I began to open up and found out those I entrusted with who I really was didn't hate me for it. And with the help of those friends, and a few other, I crossed over to the other side of the street. The monetary costs took all of my savings and the obvious and hidden costs do go on forever. Yet I don't regret my own Ownership at what Cost?"

Alexis makes a couple of very key and relevant points. Either you open up to others or risk the chance of losing your most valuable resource- yourself. In my own case when I began to come out to the friends I had left, two of them did hit the door. That was fine. I did not feel for a second they were obligated to accept me but I certainly needed to accept me!  Similar to Alexis, my new transgender reality  opened up a whole new world of friends.
Her second comment was on my Presently Unavailable post:

" Like you, my mind has always flipped from place to place, time to time and subject to subject. I think many people, whatever their orientations have a tendency to do this. Is it escapism? Perhaps. But I have survived because of my ability to get away from true reality at times. Those like you, who struggle with something so major in life as "who and what am I" are entitled to do this. Imagination and fantasy can be a marvelous long as yo can come back to the necessary task at hand when the need arises. Keep moving forward, lady!!! on Presently Unavailable."

Indeed! From the days of day dreaming of being a cheerleader when I was on the football team to the countless times I just wondered what life would be like to live for five minutes in the shoes of a woman I was watching, I was in that marvelous place until reality came back with a thud!

Thanks and please remember I'm always humbled and flattered that you all care enough to comment such as Aleis Michelle and Pat and so many others! Don't forget you can email too! Follow the links here in the blog.

The Scenic View

The "before's,  after's and in between of the video we just watched here in Cyrsti's Condo:

Victoria's Asian Secret

Delightful advertising video on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen:

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Heels n Hose n You

heavy calvesWhen I saw this picture, I thought it was-me about 20 years ago in the mall!

Not to say this untitled person wasn't me or isn't a genetic woman but it is  the picture used in a Fabulous after 40 post called : "Dressing Tips To Slim Heavy Calves and Ankles". Check the opening paragraph and you will know why you should visit here for more.

"Can you barely fit into a pair of boots because your calves are so wide? Have you given up wearing dresses because you don’t want anyone to see your huge ankles? You may not be able to change the muscular legs mother nature gave you, but you can make them a lot less noticeable."

Relax girls, this article will give you six tips to wear your beloved heels, hose, skirts and boots to the mall...the right way!

Workplace Issues

Image from Gabrielle Henderson  on UnSplash. Sadly, many transgender women and trans men still get discriminated against when they seek out ...