Monday, December 3, 2018

The Big Girl

"Big Girl" Picture by the Ohio River
I have always written about going out when MtF transition to places most likely to make you feel uncomfortable. For example, having to go to an auto parts store rather than a dress shop. Most certainly, the dress shop would be more fun but sometimes the auto parts store is the necessity.

So far, in my relatively short transgender life, I think the most macho place I found myself in was a junk yard with Liz, trying to get a used mirror for our car. It was difficult to dress to blend for a junk yard. But, the fact remains, if you are going to attempt to live a feminine lifestyle, there are going to be times when the "sugar and spice and everything nice" stereotype is not going to cut it.

Sunday, quite by accident, I found myself all so briefly in one of those testosterone macho situations.

Liz and I went to one of the big hardware box stores to look for and have lumber cut for her martial arts class. I didn't think much of it because there are always quite a few women in these stores and it is difficult to find someone to  help you, even if you want to.

Yesterday, to save time and extra steps, we decided to use the contractors entrance nearest to where the lumber is sold. As we came through the sliding doors, I found myself surrounded by a group of men checking out with their construction purchases. I had no choice but to hold my head up high and walk through them.

As I did, I heard a couple of them talking about the "big girl." I thought to myself, I will take it because I am a "big girl." Of course I didn't hear what they said after that. Which was probably a good thing!

1 comment:

  1. Gee, I thought those martial arts people just broke the boards with their hands and feet (and heads?). When did they start having them cut at a lumber store? :-)

    When I had my business, I spent most of my time dealing with contractors, either selling my services or actually working along side them on the job site. Yes, you probably wouldn't want to have heard what they might have said afterward. While they may have toned down the misogyny and dirty jokes a bit when there was a woman working on a job site, a woman still had to put up with a lot of crap from some of the guys. This may have changed somewhat over the past twelve years, but I would bet that their talk is still quite egregious when it's just guys only.

    I used to wear knee pads while I worked (I didn't want rough and calloused knees when I went home and slipped into a dress), and I got so tired of hearing the "down on your knees" jokes. I knew that I would never be able to continue my business if I had transitioned, because the tension would have been unbearable for me. I also would not have been able to make enough sales to stay in business, anyway. A severely torn rotator cuff led to my demise before I had to make that decision, and I used the downtime to begin the early stages of my transition. Although I am still hampered, physically, I have retained all of the skills to do my old work. Aside from the trivial worries of something like breaking a nail, though, I just wouldn't want to have to put up with the jokers.

    When I walk into a building store these days, I am usually offered help without solicitation. I often already know as much, if not more, than the employee does. I have learned to play a little dumb; not like I used to do, trying to impress the employee with my knowledge and expertise. There are still a lot of guys who don't appreciate it when a woman upstages them, even if it's a trans woman (or maybe, especially if it's a trans woman). There's more to being a "big girl" than our size, after all. ;-)