Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Transgender-2015

From the EdgeMediaNetwork  - What's going to happen to the transgender community in 2015? Will we build on 2014, or fall back and what may any of it mean to you anyway?  I'm sure each group's crystal balls will vary, but here is one of the first I have seen: Or, the top three:

(Bala Cynwyd, PA) Dr. Sherman Leis, founder of The Philadelphia Center for Transgender Surgery, has identified 10 important trends that will affect America and its transgender community in 2015.
"Although society has made a great deal of progress for the transgender community this past year, we still have a long way to go," said Dr. Leis. "Having recently observed Transgender Remembrance Day (November 20), it's sad to see that there are still too many victims of transgender violence," he said.
Dr. Leis' annual list of trends include:
1) More children and teenagers are coming out identifying as transgender. Thanks to expanding transgender education, supportive institutions and societal acceptance, transgender children will be able to reach balance with gender dysphoria at an earlier age, resulting in an improved quality of life.
2) More mainstream health institutions are recognizing a need for specialized transgender care. Major children's hospitals in Philadelphia and Boston, for example, have opened separate departments for transgender health and care for children.
3) More insurance companies are covering transgender surgery and health care because a growing majority of Fortune 500 companies request it, influencing the entire business community.
We are going to skip to number ten:

10) There has been a significant increase in media interest in transgender news and issues this year. As well, in the entertainment industry, there has been an increase in the number of transgender characters included in mainstream plays and television shows, such as "Orange is the New Black," on Netflix.

For the other six, follow the link!

While My Blog Gently Weeps

As Liz and I were watching the Cincinnati evening news last night, one of the lead stories was the all too familiar tragic story of a young transgender girl ending her life-essentially before it started. This is so frustrating and sad, I'm crying as I write this post. NOT a post I wanted to write on New Years Eve:


Quoting the USA Today and Sharon Coolidge of the Cincinnati Enquirer: 
Leelah's suicide and the conversation her note inspired has rocked families in the Ohio region, becoming part of a national conversation. Here, we share the facts and report what happened.

In life, Leelah Alcorn felt alone. Born male, she feared she would never be the woman she felt like inside. In death, the transgender 17-year-old -- born Josh Alcorn -- wanted to make sure others never felt that way she did.
"The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren't treated the way I was, they're treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights," Alcorn wrote in a post on Tumblr.
Her parents, she wrote, wanted her to be a "perfect little straight Christian boy."
"My death needs to mean something," she wrote in the post, which she scheduled to appear the day after her death.


"My death needs to mean something," she wrote in the post, which she scheduled to appear the day after her death.
Her final public words: "Fix society. Please."
On Sunday, just before 2:30 a.m., Alcorn was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer on I-71 in Ohio, about four miles from her home in Kings Mills.

No charges have been filed, and the State Highway Patrol continues to investigate. Her body was sent to the Montgomery County Coroner for an autopsy, which will take several weeks.
"She was super bubbly and upbeat with a really brash sense of humor; she could make anyone laugh," said Abigail Jones, 17, one of Alcorn's co-workers and friends. They were caricature artists at Kinds Island, an Ohio amusement park.
Jones even drew Alcorn as Elsa from Frozen, "her favorite thing ever."
The duo was close -- going to see movies, getting ice cream and texting. In July, Alcorn told Jones that she was transgender.
Alcorn's family declined to comment to The Enquirer. In a statement via the Kings Local School District, they requested privacy. According to the statement, Alcorn was most recently enrolled as an 11th grader at the Ohio Virtual Academy, an online school.




There is more as you follow the link but Liz and I's question was can Leelah's conservative Christian family learn too late from their daughter's death?  (I'm saying no.)


One way or another, her death is another hell the preachers make their money sermonizing on. 


Another tremendous sad shame is around here in Cincinnati and increasingly in other locations, LBGTQ groups provide outreach education to youth. In my area of the world there is GLSEN  in Cincinnati and the Dayton LGBTQ center has reached out to several transgender women and men (including me) to establish an outreach.
I'm not saying you should use me as an example but even if you have to wait a long time-it does get better.





Remembering

The most MISERABLE Womanless Beauty Pageant winner EVER! http://cyrstiscondo-cyrsti.blogspot.com/I have no idea of when this picture was taken - or of who. However, it was one of the more unique womanless beauty pageant pix we featured in Cyrsti's Condo last year:

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Cyrsti's Condo "From the Hart"


Cyrsti's Condo "Woman of the Day/Year"

I can't/won't even begin to look back on last year and pretend to have the knowledge or skill to pick a transgender "woman" of the year.  I can tell you I wouldn't pick the prettiest face.  That's typically a real insult to generics as well as trans women.  Sort of like picking  a cheer leader for her looks when the girl across the room is ready to discover a new law of physics.

I am as guilty as most though in getting tangled in the culture of looks. Truly, I am astounded at the mtf gender transitions of some of the women I see and  pass along to you. Also,  I will not backtrack on the impact of the Laverne Cox's and Janet Mock's of the world. Both are obviously talented, smart and beautiful women. But then, there are the other trans women we don't hear so much about such as  Dr. Jillian T. Weiss (left) a  Professor of Law and Society at Ramapo College of New Jersey, and a researcher in the area of transgender workplace law and policy.


She has authored numerous academic publications, presentations and other scholarly works, as well as articles and interviews for media organizations including The New York Times and Associated Press. She is a member of the Board of GetEqual, a direct action non-profit organization dedicated to LGBT rights, as well as a member of The Williams Institute Advisory Board, an LGBT rights think-tank at UCLA Law School, and former member of the Board of Advisors of the National Center for Transgender Equality.
She also provides consulting services for private and public employers, including Harvard University, Boeing and New York City, and pro bono legal representation in cases involving gender identity and gender expression discrimination. She is a member of the National LGBT Bar Association, and Chair of the Planning Committee for its annual Transgender Law Institute.
What a beautiful year 2015 could be if for once the transgender community could pull together in one unified direction?

Don't I HAVE to Have Lists?

Well, sure I do!  The problem I have is remembering 2014 because it was a blur and it is easy to get stuck on tons of individual events.

Easily though the #1 Worst happening of the year was when I was gender slurred at the LOKI Group dance near Cincinnati. My partner Liz identifies as lesbian and she wanted to go so I did and for all intents and purposes got bounced. Later I got this message:  "An Organizer removed you from this Meetup Group. Check out other LGBT Meetups near you." As I said at the time, I ran into an obvious radical feminist protecting her pile of sand in the girls sandbox.  It just brought to me the reality of bigots in the world.

Easily, the #1 Best happening of 2014 came on the night Liz and I went to a big sports bar/tavern close to her to watch our "The Ohio State Buckeyes" play Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game. Sure, the Buckeyes won big (an incredibly tough task coming up against Alabama this week) but even bigger was the fact absolutely no one gave me a second look.  Groups of guys playing darts, families, other women-no one. 

(Don't ask me to speculate WHY the most likely transgender bigots come from within the LGBTQ community?)

The biggest surprise of the year actually came recently in the month of December. For some reason, my HRT hormones went into hyper-drive. I became moody, my breasts were sore and other minor changes happened.  Often I am not the sharpest tack in the box and after I was whining for probably the thousandth time to Liz, she said relax, you just had a period.  You couldn't bleed of course, but the rest of you had a period.  It's taken a while and normal is difficult for me to relate to; I'm getting back there now.

Looking back at 2014 though, I have to toss you a cop out.  Without question, the year was the most exciting, scary and satisfying one of my life.  I am sure I will think of other "additions" to this post later. Maybe 2015?


Monday, December 29, 2014

Cyrsti's Condo "Star Grazing"

It turns out my stars have saved the best for last in 2014!  Gather around all you Libra's:

(September 23-October 22): It’s going to be good to be you now, when all those quirky things about yourself that you try to hide will be endearing for another to peep at. Forget trying to be perfect, because it’s just a silly game you play in your head. The world outside will feel warmer than ever, as there will be lots of arms outstretched that want to hold you.

And all this time, I thought I was perfect! Quirky? You "betcha!!!" Our guest sign this week  comes from you Leo's! (July 23-August 22): Brace yourself because beauty will seduce you. The fact is, you have a reflex when it comes to hotness and that is to pounce on it. Sometimes you leap too quickly and realize the catch doesn’t live up to its first impression. And then there are other times when you go too fast and eat it up too quickly. This week, change it up. Be the prey and commit to it.

As always, we know where your sign is too!!!  Go here to theFrisky.  

Playing in the Trenches

Accidentally, as I was writing another Cyrsti's Condo post the other day, I used MtF transgender woman Kimberly Reed as a stereotypical example of a point I was trying to make on the physical part of transitioning.  During her sports career in football, Kimberly was the young blond slim quarterback, during mine I played in the trenches as a defensive end.  NO, I did not play on Kimberly's team, against her and we are different ages from different places.  She is an example kids!!!

Sure, a physical transition is never easy and if you are blessed to have the support and resources to do it-the earlier the better.  I can tell you from personal experience, taking a 60 + year old male body and changing gender gears is no picnic. As you all know though, I have been at it for a long time now and found myself "back in the trenches" on several fronts.

The first "battle" ironically came quickly from within what I considered "my own community." I was naive though and thought any of the successful strides I made discovering my inner femininity could/should be shared with others.  I found instead until I spent thousands on surgery and endured years of pain, I wasn't worthy.  Although on occasion I did get my feelings hurt, I considered the source, began to call them "Trans-Nazi's" and moved on-into the real world.

Like so many others, I was spending most all of my early public time in gay venues.  I didn't take long to find myself in a different set of trenches.  Back in those days, gay and lesbian venues had even less knowledge of what a transgender woman or trans man was all about.  Worse than that, they didn't care to. After a night of getting ignored in a gay bar trying to get served, I said to hell with them and began to go to straight venues. It worked and I moved on.

On occasion I landed back in my own transgender community.  This time, I was called a transgender "pretender" by the purists of the trans world-after all, why had I waited so long to transition?  You know, it's a good question, but essentially none of their business. But, how much fun would that be, and all you regulars know I have answered the "whys and hows" of my life and even wrote a book "Stilettos on Thin Ice"  to explain it.

So, if you are considering making the transgender gender jump, chances are you are not living in a feminine ready body right now.  If you are ready to get in the trenches and do it,  be ready, the process will be incredibly tough.  The rewards though, can be just as incredibly wonderful.

I love those who tell me I could  never transition-I look like a linebacker. I just say, remember me? I was the defensive end - just down the line from you. .

Cyrsti's Condo "Cover Girl" of the Day

Our cover feature today is the gorgeous MtF transgender beauty Raika Ferraz from Brazil.



Sunday, December 28, 2014

Don't Ask if you Don't Want to Know

It's time already to dump a couple boxes of color on my hair.  Obviously, at my age, keeping up with the gray is a big deal.  Liz and I are planning on staying with a version of my current color (dark/auburn) for the foreseeable future.  Per instructions, she likes me to "warsh" it (southern Ohio pronunciation) one night and she colors it the next night.


I knew my hair had quite a bit natural soft curl to it which I have had a tendency to flat iron or brush out.  Partly because of my first trips to a professional salon and partly I became enamored with it and partly I became lazy.


What also happens is I think sometimes I end up looking like an old hippie with his hair tied back.  NOT the effect I am looking for.


So, last night, I asked Liz "Riddle me this, what if I want to keep and even enhance the curls in my hair?" OMG! I got the answer and whole bunches of instructions Liz thinks I can follow or even remember.  She forgets in girl time, I am still a beginner and it wasn't sooo long ago I was styling my hair where I could see all of it- on a wig head.


All of the sudden, we started with mousse, proceeded to broad tooth combs, picks and finally (before my normal short term memory failure-failed) we went to how much, how often and other minutia. 


So, the plan is to roll out the curls on New Years Eve.  If I end up looking like a dark haired "Little Orphan Annie"-there will be no pictures! Guaranteed!



Cyrsti's Condo "Sunday Edition"

"Ker Plunk!" It's hard to believe the last Sunday Edition for 2014 is hitting your virtual front porch!!! Get that "Cup-O-Joe" brewing!
Page One-The Week that Was-or Wasn't.  The big topic around here and elsewhere in the transgender world was (basically) do the seemingly ever growing group of very attractive trans women coming out help the rest of us at all.  Very simply, does Kimberly Reed's (left ) public image help me in my life?  Yes, a lot and no not so much.  Sure, there is such a thing as a "passing privilege" and Kimberly has her share. On the other hand, using a gender stereo type, Kimberly was the blond slim (dare I say pretty boy quarterback in football, while some of the other of us played in the trenches.)  Might as well face it girls, as far as "passing privilege" goes, most of us will always be playing in the trenches,
Last year though,   Carmen Carrera, Laverne Cox  and Janet Mock, helped us when they took the conversation away from "passing privilege" into "genital privilege". Or, what you happened to be born with does not give you the privilege to discriminate against those of us who don't define our gender by what's between our legs.


Page Two- We Got Mail!   
J.AlainaS wrote in and asked: I'm curious, how many therapy sessions did you have between the diagnosis and getting the referral/prescription? Good question!  I had four.  My therapist and I got along famously and her final comment was "You are out, really OUT!"  On the serious side, her main focus was did I have a support system and a plan in place to support a MtF gender transition.  I did, and I got the letter.  Seems like a lifetime ago, when it will be just four in 2015.


Page Three-The YEAR that Was or Wasn't.  Needless to say, 2014 was quite the year.  Most certainly, HRT changes would be towards the top of any top list I may yet come up with, but not the top by far.  HRT is just an end to a means and does give me a small gift of "passing privilege" What it didn't give me was the in-depth, high voltage look of what the girl's sandbox looked like from the inside. I can thank Liz for that!!! 2014 also provided me with thrills & chills such as androgyny and gender acceptance all the way to gender slurs and rejection.


Page Four-The Back Page.  If you celebrated Christmas, I hope you found it to be festive and loving!  Soon, we will be given a chance to stop and at the least note the coming of a New Year.  In the next couple of days, we will take our own special look here in Cyrsti's Condo!









Friday, December 26, 2014

Two 13 Year Old Girls?

My grand daughter is 13 and was at the family Christmas gathering yesterday.  She was doing her full time job being bored and detached about the surroundings.  My daughter says her daughter is taking the job very seriously.

The "other" girl in the room going through puberty managed to run the full gamut of joy to tears during a 15 minute drive to my brothers.  Of course my transition is different from my grand daughter's - but is it?  Both of us are struggling to find our place in the world propelled by the powerful hormone called estrogen.  My grand daughter is fortunate to have a strong mentor in her mother and I have similar person in my partner Liz.

I know my grand daughter has a tougher road to hoe with her hormone trip.  Her body and brain is predisposed to make the trip at a young age.  My old body on the other hand has to stop and reverse a process which has taken over 60 years to live with.  She has a whole life to transition into womanhood...I have a much shorter time.

As I have mentioned here in Cyrsti's Condo, I started HRT three years ago on New Year's Eve-but- I spent the first year essentially on the minimum dosage.  The dosage was set up to show me what the MTF transition would be like. It did and I loved it!  So, when I read later from more than a couple sources the hormonal process would take around three years to settle in-more than likely I'm still six months away from the anniversary.

I can only say, in the past month, my hormones have made their presence known.  Physically, mood swings-sore breasts, the whole deal.  When I looked at the other 13 year old girl in the room-I understood! 

 

"From the Hart"

An attractive woman makes it look easy (transgender or generic). No one looks behind the scenes at diet, skin care and/or exercise...for all of us!!!




Transgender Earth Mother Figure

Trans Gender Berdache Deer Earth Mother Venus totem figure sculpture pagan forest fairy Doe Fawn Stag Liz: found this figure in a shop on Etsy ( Bliss and Kittens) and shows exactly how "far back" transgender women go in some cultures.



TransGender Berdache Deer Earth Mother Venus totem figure sculpture pagan forest fairy Doe Fawn Stag.




Thursday, December 25, 2014

Are Transgender Beauties Just Fluff?

Nearly every time I post a picture or story here in Cyrsti's Condo I get a fairly terse and bitter response on how a Trans Activist such as say Janet Mock's ( beautiful example) public exposure has nothing to do with those of us still mocked and/or discriminated against because of our appearance.

It's a good point and one I found addressed in a recent Huffington Post article.  Of course I have my own ideas like I'm sure you do.  First of all, what are your expectations of the feminine role you are transitioning into? This time, lets use Mtf transgender woman Carmen Carerra as an example (left).  Look, I know there is not enough surgery, HRT or wishing in the world I am ever going to look like Carmen. Then again too, I could say the same thing about most all of the generics I know.  As females growing up though, all of them managed to transition to womanhood becoming beauties in their own rights.  What Carmen Carerra did do for me (as well as Janet Mock, Laverne Cox etc.) was scream to the world GENDER is NOT about GENITALS.  Which means to me a huge amount.  It's helped me to carry myself with a little extra confidence as I transition into my womanhood.

In Courtney O'Donnell's post she said it (in part) this way after trans woman Jenna Talackova burst upon the scene:  "In the weeks that followed, the number of people visiting my blog via the keyword "Jenna Talackova" was simply stunning. That keyword outdistanced the previous high by a factor of 3. The people drawn to these pro-transgender blogs were given an opportunity to learn things -- human things -- they may not learn elsewhere."

So, yes we have discussed attitude over appearance in the Condo when it comes to the public and if you don't have a nasty personality to start with-each of us can make a huge statement in small ways. Beautiful or not, I am going to pick the women I mentioned above to be on my team! 

Just one other quick point, make sure to think past your male ego past and look past the pictures or looks and listen!

And So It Is Christmas!

To all of you of the Christian faith, if you dig deep enough through the commercialization, the beauty of the holiday shines through.

My point with this post is to wish all of you a Merry Christmas! It's a shame all religions can't pause for a second and respect the other's Holy Days.

It's also a shame the number of people who refuse to accept a LGBT person because they are a "Christian."

So, at this time of the year, I pause to thank my central spirituality for my life's blessings and make time to pray for the tons of others are not so blessed. The ones who are on the streets for simply being who they are. And then there are all of you who are stuck in a very dark frustrating closet which in the end can cause the very high number of transgender suicide attempts.

Before you run off and call me the Trans Grinch who stole Christmas, it's the time of year when I lay out any kind of glitzy outfit-I do pause to think how fortunate I am.

Here's hoping you are too!

Merry Christmas!!!!
Cyrsti Hart

From the Hart!

Merry Christmas from Cyrsti!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Eye Candy?

landscape_nrm_1418829043-1909140_851758008200277_7305101977900360286_oI ran across the entire cover of the "Candy" Magazine cover featuring 14 transgender women and thought I would pass it along!

The "Ultimate" Gift List?


From the Advocate:  What is the perfect gift for a drag performer this holiday season? Wigs? Makeup? Tuck tape? At the World of Wonder holiday party, drag stars like Lady Bunny, Alyssa Edwards, Yara Sofia, Kelly Mantle, Landon Cider, and more revealed what they'd love to see in their stocking this December.

There are several drag queens interviewed for this story. I picked YouTube Star - Lacey Noel:


What should one give a drag queen for the holidays?
Tucking tape.
Is there a gift that straight people should never give gay people?
A Chick-fil-A gift card.
Follow the link for more!

Mo Mail

This Cyrsti's Condo post is basically a potpourri of comments from you ladies.

First Paula Goodwin ran a little poll on her blog on a choice of three outfits she could wear to a holiday party.  The Fashionista in me won!   Paula GoodwinDecember 22, 2014 at 11:21 AM
You guessed my outfit for tonight!
Thanks Paula and I hope you had a wonderful time! You looked great!!!
Speaking of "Fashionista", how does hair fit in?  Here's an experience:

In my childhood, I was a tow-head blond but it got darker as I aged so that it became more of a darker blond/brown with red highlights. I was once mis-gendered because of my long blond hair. I'd just checked out and the bag boy said, "Have a good day miss" The check out girl had my atm card and corrected him. I just said "Thank you" 
Good point! If you remember even I mis-gendered a 14 year old boy with straight long blond hair recently in a surgical waiting room.  Furthermore, I believe my hair growth was one of the biggest surprises of my HRT. It happened quick and I believe was the biggest factor being accepted as a trans woman.
Finally, J.AlanaS., I had a similar 'encounter" with a bag boy who was just "melting" in front of me.  I was just a redhead in a baggy sweater and 1980's big hair wearing a short mini and flats. He could barely get out he would help me with my one bag of groceries to my car.  The cashier found it all to be quite humorous.





We Got MAIL!

M Butterfly poster.jpgGee all of you are on your game more than I can ever say and I really appreciate your quick inputs!!!

In no particular order, let's get to the post What Would Mao Say?  and this comment:

 J.AlanaSDecember 22, 2014 at 9:07 PM
Funny because during one of my college classes we read M. Butterfly, and it seems that Mao or his government weren't above using a little gender confusion to elicit information about the US in Vietnam via a low level French attache.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M._Butterfly
and the real French Diplomat:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Boursicot
and the opera singer:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shi_Pei_Pu

Thanks "J.AlanaS" and if you haven't seen the movie, it's worth a look too!

Moving on to our Cyrsti's Condo post "Androgyny and the Trans Girl" -Sally Bend commented:

Well said, hon. Everybody talks about before/after, but you rarely see anybody talk about that androgynous in between. That grey area used to bother me, but with no true after in sight, I've come to appreciate the little joys it delivers.
Thanks Sally! Looking back at the post, I don't if I made my point about how androgyny really sux for the kid being bullied at school.   For the rest of us though, the tipping point of gender androgyny provides an exciting/scary look into the gender life you are considering.  You can go forward, back or as Sally said, appreciate the view.
We have more mail next!!!






Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Love at Christmas!

Recently, MtF transgender activist Janet Mock began hosting an online show on MSNBC . Then, she celebrated another milestone- a romantic one!

This weekend the longtime boyfriend of transgender author and activist Janet Mock upstaged her Friday debut as a host of an online show for MSNBC. He popped the question, and Mock revealed the news — and showed off the ring — to her fans and friends on Instagram andTwitter, declaring, simply: “I said YES.”

Here's the juicy  love story from the Advocate: 
Tredwell met Mock early Easter morning of 2009 at a bar in Manhattan, and as she described their first encounter in an article on XOJane, she caught him looking at her as she twirled on the dance floor. “He's a fantasy come true, and I want him to want me,” she recalled.
They went for a walk on Houston Street. Over lattes and a cinnamon roll, they shared their stories: He’s from North Dakota, takes photos, and trains dogs for a living; she’s from Hawaii and works as an editor for a popular website. She told him she wants to tell stories that matter.
After a month of casual dates, Mock revealed her own story, saying, “I was born a boy.” She told him what she called her “whole story,” because she was falling for him. Her revelations includded “I knew I was a girl from my very first thoughts”; “I began presenting as female from age 12”;  “I took hormones in high school”; “I flew to Thailand to have surgery at 18.”
Afraid, worried about what he would say, Mock waited for him to react. And his reaction, as she described it, provoked tears: “Can I hug you?”
Mock credits her relationship with Tredwell and his desire “to know me, to ask me questions about my past, force me to retrace steps that have made me the woman I am today” for inspiring her to write her best-selling memoir, Redefining Realness. 
Follow the Advocate link above for more details on her first show So Popular with Janet Mock.


In Pads and Out

Last night the Cincinnati Bengals surprised the NFL world (and most all of it's fans) by beating mighty Denver and QB Peyton Manning.  Over a 15 plus year storied career, the Bengals had never beaten Manning.  Last night, the future hall of famer Manning looked ready for retirement in a very cold and heavy "Kentucky Rain" -in all respect for the Elvis Presley's 1970 hit "Kentucky Rain" because Cincinnati lies right across the Ohio River from Kentucky.

The real reason for this Cyrsti's Condo post has very little to do with sports though.  Last night, I also kicked into high gear finding an outfit for New Year's Eve.  Fortunately, I came up with four alternatives-two of which, were eliminated.

This year, Liz and I aren't really going anywhere really fancy or upscale, so I was looking for an outfit which was somewhat dressy but not over the top. Also, the outfit had to be comfortable, warm and include low heeled shoes. Cincinnati is not known for it's balmy temperatures in December, we could experience any kind of weather and we will have to do some walking to the places we are going. (Even after using cabs) I have a bad hip, so I can't even think about wearing my low healed boots.

What I could wear though was an ancient black stretch skirt I have had soooo long, I truly can't remember when I bought it.  I only know if I had a museum for cross dressing clothes which helped open the closet door for me, this skirt would be in it.  It even has survived a couple of clothing purges years ago.  (Come on! Did you really think I was going to throw everything out?)

At any rate, I thought a could pair the skirt with a lacy camisole top and a patterned gray and black top. The camisole's lacy trim matches the gray in the blouse.  Now, all of that sounded good in "practice" but I hadn't practiced the outfit yet and practice I did.

I rummaged through my bras and found a lacy gray push up bra which seemed to be perfect for the camisole and built up from there.  I knew already how the top fitted nearly perfect over my hips and I knew my dressy black flats would be ideal, but how about the skirt?

Turns out I saved the best for last.  "Back in the Day" I used my do it yourself foam padding to make my own hips and even made a makeshift pantyhose device to hold the pads in.  At times, I felt like I was returning to my old football days and "suiting up."  Last night though, for the first time in my HRT experience, I was able to see clearly how feminine my hips and butt area had become.  I was simply astounded. I knew it was happening (and that it takes awhile) but I hadn't really worn an article of clothing like the skirt which showcased my new feminine look.

To add to the fun, to be closer to my family at Christmas,  I have been staying at my Sister in Law's (Missy) and of course she was peeing down her leg to help? or more correctly, see.  (Classic generic curiosity)  She too was genuinely impressed with the outfit and was correctly jabbering away about the need for a pair of exotic black stockings to go with it. (Of course!)

So, I guess if you live long enough and keep on trying, the world can come full circle.  I never did want to play football anyhow. I will have pictures for you all-I promise!

Brazilian Transgender Beauty

#Roberta Holanda#Marcela OhioOur  Cyrsti's Condo feature covers today are two gorgeous MtF Brazilian transgender women, Roberta Holanda and Marcela Ohio: 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Cyrsti's Condo "Star Grazing"

It's time again kids to take a look at our astrological readings for the week!

As always, we Libra's go first:  (September 23-October 22): Your communication lines are open and people will be dialing back with their complaints, worries, confusions, etc. It’ll seem as if all the floodgates will open and truth will come pouring down on you, soaking you to the bone. Although most of the dramatics don’t involve you personally, it’s never ‘just easy’ being in the front row when Pandora’s Box is opening.

Wow! I can't begin to tell you how accurate this "Graze" is for me! Scary!!!!

This week I went back to you Acquarians for company! (January 20-February 19): You can’t underestimate catty, jealous people. While you have been enjoying the holidays, chances are the haters were working overtime to sabotage your plans or tarnish your rep. Although you should have seen this coming from miles away, be glad you were busy living your life and prefer to see humanity in a better light. Don’t worry. Eventually, you will get the last laugh.


There you go kids!!! If we didn't get to your sign, don't get your panties in a bunch and go to theFrisky!


What Would Mao Think?

Bobbie sent this along from Foreign Policy.com:

Over the past 30 years, Chinese society has undergone an evolution in traditional morality perhaps as rapid and unsettling as its economic boom. Yet sexual orientation and gender identity have retained a strong aura of cultural taboo. Same-sex marriage remains illegal, and many LGBT individuals enter into traditional marriages in order to assuage social and family expectations. But even that is changing, as LGBT communities haveflourished in China’s sprawling metropolitan centers such as Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Beijing. Now a widely published scholar and well-known proponent of same-sex marriage has revealed her own relationship with a transgender man, a revelation that has taken Chinese social media by storm.
Li Yinhe, a public intellectual with a Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh who writes frequently on sexuality, revealed Dec. 18 on the Sina blogging platform that she is in a relationship with a transgender man whom she does not name, and that they have lived together for the past 17 years, starting in mid-1997.* The revelation was all the more unexpected given Li’s prior marriage to the renowned male novelist Wang Xiaobo; many in China had continued to view Wang’s untimely death of a heart attack in April 1997 as a romantic tragedy that left Li an ever-grieving widow. Li’s Dec. 18 revelation has already been viewed over 600,000 times, garnered over 7,000 comments, and has been widely republished in mainstream news outlets including Tencent and QQ. Li also posted the blog to her one million followers on Weibo, China’s massive microblogging platform; within 24 hours, it had been shared more than 33,000 times with more than 10,000 comments.
The shear size of China's population alone means when it makes a statement-it makes a big splash. If you are of age though, you will remember the Marxist Chinese dictator Mao Tse-tung . Furthermore you may remember how cool it was (in the non establishment sort of way) to carry and/or have a copy of Mao's Little Red Book.  Even if you never read it.

So, when I read stories such as this, I know the world has come a long way. The article is quite complex and has a few corrections. Go here for more.





Do Blondes Have More Fun?

Paula and Mandy both commented on the Cyrsti's Condo post Historical Blond (hysterical?):

Paula GoodwinDecember 22, 2014 at 4:22 AM
  1. The Blond Bombshell is still an aspiration for some of us! As my natural colour became lighter (grey) I found that using a wig of my original colour (Dark Brown) no longer looked natural as my skin tones had changed as well. However the grey did age me so I have just gone blond, being the wrong side of 50 I was a little worried what people would think when I was pretending to be a bloke, but so far no negative comments.
  2. Lucky you! Blonde would be nice....

    Every time my hair gets lighter, I get comments from my wife, which lead me to darken it up. She definitely rebelled at the highlights I tried...and it took several months for them to completely disappear!

    So I just stick with as close to my natural color (back in the day, since I'm gray now) as I can get.
  3. Thanks ladies!  Looking back, I can see when I tried to go very blond was a mistake (I looked like a bloke, Paula) but going with a honey blond shade, I began to come and go in society.  My wife however, disliked any shade of blond on me- which (looking back) I think had more to do with her prejudice against other genetics than me. Also Paula, I'm a firm believer in NOT following the hair length rules and color shades on women of age.  Do your thing, own it and society will too-unless you are squeezed into a mini skirt and 4" heels in the mall. 
  4. Mandy, sounds like you may be going through what I went through.  I am lucky Liz wants to play with my hair as much as I want to experiment with it.  The whole process is fun because it fits my shortened attention span! 

Androgyny and the Trans Girl

One piece to the transgender transition journey is the time a person spends being androgynous.  The gender "never-never land."  I find it a relatively frustrating place to be on occasion. I know where I am going but I'm  like a kid in the back seat asking parents every half hour, "are we there yet?"

Also, androgyny offers a certain seduction to other human critters.  On the negative side, it leads to people being scared,  bullied and violence.

Until I can make the final jump into the girl's sandbox, I am stuck with a certain amount of androgyny.  The amount of attention I get on occasion is fun and other times tedious but (I hate this line) - it is what it is.  I wanted this, love this and here I am.  Interestingly, this weekend, I felt a real live "period" . Without the obvious happenings of course, my breasts were hard and sore and I felt out of sorts all weekend. Over the past couple of years, I have felt these feelings over a period of time (no pun intended) but never a condensed time period.  Believe me, I'm keeping track of the dates to see if I am on some sort of monthly cycle. Heading back to my androgyny subject matter, I know generic males have their own type of period too!

Also I know more than a few of you Cyrsti's Condo regulars will the like the touch of a gender androgyne. Enjoy a pix of the Russian MtF androgynous model  Andrew Gordiychuk.- rocking a hot shade of red lipstick and nails!  Find more on the New Male Fashion site here.

Cyrsti's Condo "Cover Woman of the Day"

Our feature cover today is the classic transgender female impersonator Coccinelle ( Jacqueline Charlotte Dufresnoy) who underwent SRS in Casablanca circa 1958.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Historical Blond

Ironically I ran across two pictures in one day which illustrated my "blond days."

vintage female impersonatorsThe first is a picture of a person in a wig very reminiscent of one of my first "real wigs."  For some reason, one of the beauty parlors I used to walk by all the time had a wig in the window (between all the ultra short conservative wigs) which looked just like the one on the left.

I was in love but could not figure how I could ever build up the courage or the funds to buy it.  Through a complex series of happenings finally I was able to convince my then fiance to buy it and then I "appropriated" it.  All of this process occurred in the early 1970's when I was still in college and looking dead ahead at being drafted into the Army.

I called the process years later a common one for a vast majority of cross dressers I knew.  Wasn't being the blond "bombshell" everyone's ideal?  Can't speak for "everyone", but it was mine. I ended up keeping the wig much longer than my fiance who dived on me when I went into the military.  (True Love?)

Years later, in the picture you see to the right was blond wig I literally wore out as I was solidifying myself as a feminine person. (Before, I would spend a week as a blond, the next as a redhead, etc.)

Ironically, deep down, I knew that my hair color (blond or not) should be tied in to my complexion not fantasy. Especially, if I was to be successful in my quest to live in a feminine world.

Now of course, since I have "inherited" all of my real hair, I'm able to play in the "real hair" world of women.  Essentially, dark hair in the winter and lighter in the summer. Through the miracle of hair colors I'm able to go back to my roots (and color them). My natural air color before the gray sat in was nearly black but I have a heritage of red heads from my Mom's side of the family.

Somewhere admist all of that though the old blond love affair still exists.


Cyrsti's Condo "Sunday Edition"

Ker Plunk! Heads up kids, another Sunday Edition of the Condo has hit your front porch!  It's our pre-Christmas edition!

Page 1-The Week that Was-or Wasn't.  Last week, we discussed the effect of good or bad publicity on the transgender world.  Very simply, there can't be enough of good P.R. - until we don't need the "pub" at all.  Essentially,  a time when our whole community goes stealth. A time when we don't commit suicide at a higher rate, people don't harm us at a higher rate and we enjoy the same rights as any other American.

Page 2.- The CIA Comes Out? I'm just a geek and when I am directed to (Andee) LGBT news releases I had no knowledge of.- I get interested. Especially  if the news comes from one of the most unlikely places I can consider-the CIA. The much maligned agency is actually making strides in establishing a diverse culture.  From CIA Deputy Director Avril Haines:

Haines also highlighted the tremendous strides that CIA has made in reaching out to members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community across the country and in fostering an inclusive workforce, an initiative that was showcased this summer in interviews with seven LGBT Agency officers with the nation’s leading LGBT magazine, The Advocate. As one officer highlighted, “We are to the point…where there is simply no need to hide who you are, to be in the closet, to worry about what other people think about you, or what the potential career impact would be if you were an openly gay person.”

My point is, unlike most other major corporations, the CIA has recognized the worth of a person's skills-not their gender or sexual orientation.

Page 3.-Holiday's 2014 In just a couple more days, Christmas will have come and gone and 2015 will be right around the door.  Every year it is a time to stop and reflect what the year past meant to us and what the year coming up could mean to us.  On the other hand, it's a time to step out in our holiday finest, or being envious of the generics around you who do. May all of you get a chance to express yourself!!!

Page 4.- The Back Page.  Coming up, I'm going to be passing along Liz and I's New Year's Eve plans and yes, a very limited round of New Year's resolutions! Thanks to all for stopping by the "Condo" ...Peace!




Cyrsti's Condo "Cover Woman of the Day"

Ivan Rastrepin, RussiaOur feature cover today is MtF androgynous Russian model Ivan Rastrepin

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Cyrsti's Condo "Cover Woman of the Day"

Cammie GallowayOur feature cover today is MtF transgender model Cammie Galloway rocking a vintage look!

Playing the "Angles?"

When you live in the United States, a lot happens.  Some of which are behind most of the big headlines. Until a week or so ago, I had no idea of any LGBT influence within an agency such as the CIA. When the agency came under scrutiny for it's handling of prisoners in the post 9-11 times.  If you remember, (at the time) one of Cyrsti's Condo readers passed along a Director of Intelligence presentation


Now she passed along unique look at behind the scenes from the Advocate:  I'm going to pass along a few excerpts: Not too long ago, openly LGBT people were denied federal security clearances. These days, the CIA has an extensive strategy in place to help trans employees confirm their gender expression.
The article goes on to tell the experience of Jenny
 (who declined to give her full name or official title, citing security concerns, in a phone interview with The Advocate) lived as a woman among friends and family but had to don what she calls male drag when she reported to work. It wore on her.
“While we’re undercover, we pledge to be honest with ourselves and the agency,” Jenny says.
In fact, the words “You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free” are engraved on the wall in the main building of the CIA. Jenny says everyone there takes that quote seriously.
“I write memos for the highest customers in the country — for the president — and we try to speak truth to power,” she continues. “But if we can’t be authentic and truthful about ourselves, then that’s a real problem.”
Jenny worked with her immediate supervisors, members of the agency’s LGBT employee affinity group (the Agency Network for Gay and Lesbian Employees, or ANGLE), and a dedicated senior officer with the agency’s human resources department. She and her colleagues reviewed the latest federal guidelines around transgender employees and set out on what would be a two-year journey to support Jenny living and working as her authentic self.
It turns out we have a Cyrsti's Condo blog visitor who was a part of the Angle group.  Andee!!! Thanks again for your input!!!
Follow the link above for more.

Cyrsti's Condo "Quote of the Day"

yup!

So All "Pub" Is Not Good "Pub?"

By "Pub" I am referring to "Publicity", specifically transgender pub.

Michelle and Pat responded to our recent Cyrsti's Condo post on the rise of positive transgender role models and shows on TV.  Appropriately both mentioned we all still suffer from the negative story too and Michelle even looked forward to the day when we trans folk are not news simply when we walk on to a podium or stage.

On occasion, I can be a visionary and see it happening, on others, my vision is not so good.  I would suppose the process depends exactly where you live. Yesterday was one of those days I agreed with Michelle's hopes as it was my time to shine in the waiting room of my small local Veterans Administration clinic. I was there for my yearly therapist "check up" with the VA and I was deemed "so interesting" that I was essentially tag teamed. One was a "meds" specialist, the other "lifestyle."

I didn't set out to become, well- publicity.  In my local clinic-I still do my best to butch it up.  It is tough anymore because of my mane of long hair and HRT softened skin. Once I get to the staff, I'm not fooling anyone anyhow, I'm fairly sure all of the clinic's small staff (maybe 3 docs and 12 nurses etc) know of "me" and really have gone out of their way to respect my transition. I have heard "rumors" of other transgender patients in the Dayton, Ohio hospital center but of course I have never met one.

The patients in the waiting room are a different matter. The process at times gets to be rather humorous. I get looks from everyone, especially the generics. I think "get over my hair! Bitches!!!"

Fast forward the process to my therapist appointments.  Both went so far as to not use a first name with me at all when then called me in. Med therapist was predictably dry, but lifestyle therapist was interesting.  At one point she was even apologizing for Ohio's supposed resistance to LGBT culture in any form. (Outside of Columbus.)  I jumped into educational mode and told her about the advances in our part of the state in cities such as Cincinnati and nearby Dayton. Thankfully, all my visits went well and I left hoping I was able to leave as much positive "Pub" as I could for the cause.

I'm not naive enough to think we now we are not doing anymore than scratching the surface of transgender acceptance.  I equate the process to a version of urban guerrilla warfare, a door to door - person to person battle. We are just going to have to make sure we tip the good publicity scale to the max and win the battles and the war..


Friday, December 19, 2014

Trans Girls Night Out

I have a dear transgender woman friend I mention here in Cyrsti's Condo often. Lately we have been able to get together every other week or so.  Last night was one of those nights.

Naturally, the chance to interact one on one with another trans girl is special- period.  We share the unique bond of the lives we lead.  No matter what anyone else thinks of us (pro or con) we are living the life we so desperately wanted.

We always meet in a beer tap house/restaurant and sit at the bar and chat.  I've been a regular  for over seven years and have in many ways transitioned in front of a couple of their long term bartenders. In fact two of them remember me when I used to come in there as a guy with my deceased wife who used to work nearby. So meeting my friend there is a natural since I have been accepted for so long and now she is too.

She is significantly ahead of me in her transition in many ways and behind in others.  She is 40, I'm estimating on and off hormones for 15 years, tons of electrolysis, tall, slim and attractive. So attractive last night, the acoustical guitar singer playing was seriously flirting with her.  We even got a special mention to the "ladies at the bar" - we were the only ones.

The only transitional  area I believe she is behind me is she is finally putting full energy into being herself.  It's the place my partner Liz says I found myself in a year or so ago.  She says she found herself marveling at my feminine person coming out of her shell. Also,  I have been so fortunate to witness it in a transgender man friend I have. Of course I'm biased, but I don't see how even the biggest transgender detractors can ignore this.

Now my friend is working on changing her gender markers.  Drivers license done, except for a subtle screw job at the BMV when they added her very male middle name on a license marked "F".  Of course they did! I have no middle name on my male license at all.  Her next step, the legal name change, is in it's final stages.

Can't say I'm not more than a little envious and a much more than a ton frustrated. My plan still is to wait until I go through the turmoil of a final move in with Liz before I begin the gender marker journey. That kids, is a whole other story because you have to add the Medicare and Veteran's Administration systems to my markers, just to make sure I would have extra fun!

But real fun was what the two of us had last night.  I even volunteered to be her "wing girl"-if she buys the wings!