Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Mardi Gras 2005 ~ Show Us Your....

No, no-one asked. We're a pretty mellow group. :)

There were about twenty people when I arrived. The hostess, J, opened the door, looked at me and suddenly looked shocked. I said "see? I told you I had nice legs." She laughed and asked what name I wanted on my name tag. She suggested a female variant on my male name, but instead she just put my real name (and voting district) on my tag. She then pointed me at the food and drinks, introduced me to one of the other women there and went off to run her party. I chatted with this woman a bit, and she was the first of three who said "I didn't know you were a guy until you opened your mouth" which is close to nirvana.

While we were chatting, a woman, E, whom I had known for about a year came in. I said, "E just walked in. She's looking around and she looked at me and paused but kept looking." E was still standing by the door, talking to someone I didn't know and she did that twice more. I think she thought "I know her" but she couldn't place me. After about ten minutes I went up to her and she looked at my name tag. I said "you kept looking at me"! She said "well, you looked familiar".

In this blog, I have briefly mentioned that I am a "classic introvert". Lots of people say they're introverts; most are not. I know; I've said I don't like labels and here I am stamping my forehead with one in large block letters.

An extrovert gains energy from crowds and attention. An introvert gains energy from solitude.

Sometimes I can tolerate crowds, but you're more likely to find me away from the group. At a party, I'll spend too much time getting a drink, or food, or focusing on some room decorations because it keeps me away from people. I've had situations where I had to just leave, at least for a while, to regroup. If you put me in front of a hundred people and say "talk about for twenty minutes", I'd be fine. If you put me in a room with a hundred people at a wedding I'll flee at the earliest possible moment.

But at the party, I went up to a few people I didn't know, or barely knew, and said hi and chatted about politics and the food and the nice house and common friends. For at least that night, Meg forget she was an introvert.

My state delegate, C, showed up with his family for a brief visit. My biggest mistake of the evening: not getting a picture of the two of us, with me giving him a hug or putting my arm around him or SOMETHING. Even just standing next to him, or talking to him! Meg has a lot to think about and forgets things like that and regrets them for a long time (at least five years, apparently).

Anyway, C knows me. He knows my name, he knows where I live, and he knows me well enough that when I was at a county inauguration he came in, saw me standing on a balcony two levels up and waved to me. Yes, I was on the balcony to avoid the crowds (see earlier paragraph).

C looked at me. I put out my hand. He shook my hand and looked at my name tag. Then he said loudly, "! You look different during the day!" I told him there was a women's issue that was being debated in Richmond (I forget what it was) and I wanted to make sure he knew which side of the issue I was on.

I told a couple of the women "I almost didn't make it. I was rushing to get ready and I thought 'opaque' meant 'can't see through'. I put on the 'opaque tights' and my hair showed through, so I had to shave my legs. Then I put on the blouse and didn't realise that the sleeves were kind of see-through so I had to shave my arms". I think I was trying to justify this for myself more than anyone else. I "had to" for the costume. I "didn't know" girl things. It's only a costume.

Denial is a deep deep river.

One experience I had that I wouldn't have had if I was just out trying to pass among the civilians: I could make a bit of "girl talk".

I had fun talking to the women about my back hurting from that extra weight and the pain of clip-on earrings (the hostess gave me these purple glitter half-sphere clip-ons to replace mine ~ they were hideous but I dutifully put them on), and other "woman" stuff. E said "you've done this before" and I said, "I always do this when the family's away." I also talked about doing it again the next day and going shopping. Of course, E, like everyone else knows I'm kidding.

It's good to have a reputation as a kidder.

The picture is of me before I left for the party. Click to enlarge.


  1. I LOVE that pic. :D

    And it's a great story. I know you've said it before, but I have trouble seeing you as an introvert. Probably because your writing is so warm and inviting.

  2. Wow, what an adventure. BTW, how do you get by with tights at this time of the year/ In So CA we will be bare-legged till next month and even then tights and hose will be the exception.

  3. Um.... Mardi Gras is in February. It wasn't too cold that evening which is good ~ I didn't bring a coat! I had my feathers to keep me warm. :)

  4. What a great Mardi Gras outfit. All you needed was a big sun hat with lots of green feathers!

    Oh yes, it is wonderful to be known as a 'kidder' and really helps to have to have a sense of humor when you are trans! :P


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