Exercise! Gyms! Exclamation points!

By , September 20, 2010 10:06 pm
Treadmills

Ooh...a gym.

This past Saturday, I went to a circus arts class. It’s the first class I attended since I had my gallbladder out, and it felt really good to be moving. However, my body’s complaints on Sunday made me realize I really need to start exercising consistently again.

And so, I’m seriously considering joining a gym.

I have mixed feelings about gyms. Obviously there are certain things – a pool, for example – most people don’t have. But I always feel a bit like, “If I just had a little more self control, I wouldn’t need to pay money to exercise somewhere else!” Indeed, that’s how I justified my Wii Fit purchase: I’ll have this one-time expense, but then use my will power and self control to exercise regularly. (It worked. For about a month.)

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‘Uncovering the Mirrors’ video, part one

By , September 18, 2010 6:50 pm

More video to come. Stay tuned!

Uncovering the Mirrors – Pt 1 – Movement Sequence from Rebecca Kling on Vimeo.

Rape and Responsibility

By , September 17, 2010 2:21 pm

A few months ago Blue Milk posted But why shouldn’t she take some responsibility too for the rape? (Yes, I’m behind on getting around to this link.) It’s in response to a comment on another post from the same blog, where someone said:

If a man goes alone through an area of the city at night and gets mugged, I would give him none of the blame, but some of the responsibility (He’s not at fault for doing what he did, but it was at least somewhat irresponsible of him to do so).

If a girl gets so completely drunk that she can not take care of herself and she ends up being raped, I would give her none of the blame, but still some of the responsibility (She’s not at fault for doing what she did, but it was at least somewhat irresponsible of her to do so).

I must admit, I’ve wondered this myself. If I leave my car unlocked, it doesn’t mean I was “asking” to get robbed, or that any resulting theft is morally excusable.  But couldn’t I have done something to prevent the robbery?

Blue Milk provides what I think is a rather brilliant response, highlighting the absurdity of the situation were the roles reversed. You should go read it in its entirety, but (to summarize) she provides a hypothetical of a man going back to a woman’s apartment and subsequently getting raped by that woman’s boyfriend (and his friends).

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Identity and Perspective

By , September 16, 2010 1:49 pm

Women Born Transsexual had a post a few weeks ago titled A Matter of Semantics: The Difference Between “Identifying as” and “Identifying with.” The post was prompted by a question seen on Facebook asking if readers identified as male, female, or transgender.

The post is interesting to me for a few reasons. First, Suzan begins by saying…

I’m an old fashioned lefty.  I’m not something because I identify as that thing.  Claiming to identify as without being seems to me to be an odd construct that doesn’t fall much in line with my existentialist line of thinking.

I am not a woman because I identify as a woman. I am a woman even though I was assigned male at birth because of having been born with something that the best term for still seems to be “transsexualism”.  I had sex reassignment surgery that made me female.

It’s an interesting question, to be sure. Perhaps the interesting question, when it comes to identity politics: when does someone become part of a certain group? (Race, religion, gender, ethnicity, whatever.) Is it a declarative process? “I identify as X, therefor I am X.” Or is it a tautological of identity? “I am X because I am X.”

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“Transgender clothing”?

By , September 15, 2010 8:06 pm
ACNE "transgender" models

The photo from both articles

I don’t expect much from the New York Daily News, but still… They’re reporting that “The Swedish clothing brand ACNE is launching a new collection aimed at transgender consumers.” Except the NY Daily News is reporting on a Vogue UK story, which actually says, “ACNE has joined forces with Candymagazine to launch a new collection targeted at transvestites and cross-dressers.” (Emphasis added.)

Being trans is not (necessarily) the same thing as being a transvestite or cross-dresser!

But my frustrations are a little deeper than that.

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A video question

By , September 15, 2010 12:24 pm

I’m currently editing some stuff from Uncovering the Mirrors and had a question about the best way to post it. I recently upgraded to a Vimeo Plus account, which means I can now upload much longer videos. Would it be more useful to upload the entire show in one ~50 minute video, or to divide it up into shorter (maybe ~10 minute) sections?

Links and a Ray Bradbury love letter

By , September 14, 2010 12:28 pm

First, an amazing and hilarious music video:

Meanwhile…

The REAL ‘Stuff White People Like’ – OKCupid continues their interesting analysis of the huge tons of data they have from their online dating site.

Terminological Bullshit – Using burgled versus robbed, raped versus anything else

Ignorance – A post on ignorance concerning trans issues and identities

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A delightful hookup

By , September 13, 2010 4:47 pm

Of the many fun things about the Fringe Festival, a great part was meeting a ton of people. Artists, volunteers, festival-goers, I got a chance to chat with ‘em all. And, by happy coincidence, the venue I performed in was particularly queer-heavy, both in the subject of its performances and in its volunteer staff.

One of the people I met, we’ll call her E, expressed interest in getting drinks or coffee with me after the festival. I said I’d like to, because E is a cool person and I need more queer friends, but I definitely had the thought in the back of my mind that this might be asking me out on a date. Since I’d be happy either way – date or friendly socialization – I didn’t bother asking E to clarify. We set up a time and place to meet on Saturday night, and I tried not to over-think things. (“Things” being whether or not this was a date, what I was going to wear, how much makeup I needed, noticing while walking to the bar that – oh bugger – I forgot to put any on, and so on.)

When we met at the bar, E bought us both drinks and left her card with the bartender. I figured this was a good sign, but still tried not to over-think things. She then pulled out my chair for me and helped me remove my coat, at which point the signs became a little more clear. We chatted for the next hour or so, talking about the Fringe Festival, our previous and future artistic projects, our experiences living in Chicago, the ridiculous drunken people walking past the window; all the things you chat about with someone when you’re enjoying their company, getting to know them, and getting a little tipsy.

As we both worked on our third drinks (mine: a vodka cranberry, hers: a dirty martini) I realized I had almost reached the bottom of my glass while E had barely touched hers.  “E,” I asked, “are you trying to get me drunk?”

She looked at me. “Yes.”

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Some random thoughts

By , September 11, 2010 12:09 pm

I really like Five Thirty Eight. I do. I think it’s a great blog, intelligent, insightful, and on point. I just unsubscribed.

Since being bought out by the New York Times, 538 has gone from allowing the entire blog posts to be read in a reader to only offering a one-sentence teaser. I understand, from the NYT perspective, that they want advertising dollars. However, from my perspective, my RSS reader is my newspaper, custom built with authors and articles in which I find value. I don’t want to journey out of my paper. It’s as if, on page 3 of the Times, they said, “By the way! Check out this cool article in another magazine!”

No thanks.

If only I’d transitioned earlier

By , September 10, 2010 2:07 pm

RegretEarlier today, I was interviewed by someone from the Chicago Gender Society about my upcoming remount of Trans Form. We were discussing my history, things I feel proud of, things I regret. I said that I wish I’d transitioned earlier, but I’ve been trying to remember a realization of mine: Everyone wishes they had transitioned earlier.

I’ve been told, by trans people in their forties or fifties, that I’m “so lucky” to be able to transition when I am, with the support I have. And that’s absolutely true. But it would have been nice to be able to transition ten years earlier. That’s true, too.

I imagine that, whenever you realize you want to transition, and begin that process – be it at six or sixty – you’re going to say, “If only I’d transitioned earlier!” Because being trans is about realizing something isn’t quite right, and going about fixing it. And even if that something is only wrong for a few months, it’s still wrong.

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