Friday, May 31, 2013

Someplace to Go

"Drag queens gave their enthusiastic support Thursday to Dining Out for Life, a Food & Friends fundraiser to benefit people with HIV/AIDS, cancer and other life-challenging illnesses. More than 130 Washington-area restaurants participated, contributing 25 percent to 110 percent of that day’s lunch and dinner proceeds."

That was the subhead on a photo gallery in the Washington Post a couple of weeks ago.

All of the pictures are here.  No matter what your orientation, getting out is good for us.

Thursday, May 30, 2013


May 18 was "Trans Pride Day" in DC.  This is part of the Gay Pride events here in DC.  The Gay Pride ("Capital Pride") events run for several weeks.

The Trans Pride Day events are a full day of programs, with breakout sessions, sponsors, and speakers.

The 18th was a rainy Saturday.  I hadn't prepared for going out and getting ready would take a bit of time.  I wasn't sure what to wear ~ would it be casual, dressy, all over the place....  I didn't know if it was mostly a gay event or a trans event.  Plus, it was my oldest son's birthday.  And I was behind on taking care of things at home.

Those are the excuses.

The reason I didn't go is, it is somehow outside of my comfort zone.  I don't know why.  I don't know which of those excuses is an actual reason, or if it's something else.

It's almost two weeks later and I still don't know.  I figure I have about fifty weeks to figure it out and go to next year's event.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Simple Pleasure ~ Technology Update

Once upon a time, we were called transvestites (TVs).  Then both our vocabulary and technology evolved and we became crossdressers (CDs).

Now, people are steering away from TVs; my son doesn't even have one at his apartment.  And no-one uses CDs anymore.

It's time to update our label.  I propose Dynamically Variable Dressers (DVDs).

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

It Figures

The day after my first "Girls Do It (But I Don't)" post (about me not wearing perfume) the following freecycle ad appeared: 

OFFER: Perfume
I have the following perfume used only a couple of times. They were given to me as gifts and they make me sneeze. Take all or just one. Located near [where I live now]. 

- Elizabeth Arden Pretty (bottle)
- Calvin Klein euphoria (bottle and two purse atomizers) 
If I swore off  gambling, the next day there'd be an OFFER: surefire system to win at the track.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Be Careful What You Wish For

(Before I  get to the meat of the post, I need to wish Charity a happy birthday!)

When I dress, I hope to pass.

It's more than that though.  Passing is in the middle.  Here's a list of hopes, from minimum to needs-help-of-fairy-godmother:

wear a skirt or dress
not look like my male self
not look like a guy in a dress
tie: pass as a woman
       blend with other women
be attractive as a woman
be downright pretty

I'm in my late 50s, and even for women with the advantage of being one all their lives, most women my age aren't what society would call pretty.  I don't expect anyone to come up to me and say "wow, you look great."  OK, I can probably find someone on Craigslist.  Gigs -- Creative.  Looking for someone to tell me I look great.  Will pay up to $50.

But in real life?  No way.  At the last soiree, someone said from an angle, I looked like Lily Tomlin.  Thanks, I suppose.  But I'd rather look like, say, Catherine Bach.

Then a reader sent me a bunch of "then" and "now" pictures of actors and actresses.

Would you believe it?  It took 30 years but I'm prettier than Catherine Bach!  I got my wish, just not the way I hoped.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Little Sports Humour

I had a Saturday In the Bleachers yesterday.  Here's a few more, sans gender content.

Saturday, May 25, 2013


Just some random gender-ish cartoons today.  In the Bleachers, Betty, Bottomliners, and the Flying McCoys.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Thicker? No. Longer? I Think So.

Breast growth isn't my only experiment.  On and off, I've been trying lash sera.  These claim to increase

the length of your lashes, or make them thicker, or both.
I started using RapidLash which is expensive and now harder to find.  I scoffed at the results until I noticed that, when I curl my lashes, there is definitely more lash exposed beyond the curler.

Oddly enough, it seems my right eye's lashes are longer than my left eye's lashes.

I tried a couple of other sera but the jury is currently out.  I used one which left a horrible crust on my lashes.  I used another from Rimmel which had an odd brush which made it hard to not poke myself in the eye while using it.  I'm now using something that's incredibly inexpensive (Select Lash Eye Lash Serum).  I'll report back in a few weeks.  I suspect that, as lashes fall out and are replaced, they'll stop growing at their normal length or respond to the serum.

Time will tell, but it's a tough experiment to do: I know the Rapidlash works but I'd love to find a less expensive alternative.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Cause and Effect (or... Training for What? The Olympics?)

 I have had an epiphany.

I have been searching for bras in my (natural) size.  Without enhancements, there are not enough A's to represent my cup size.  Lately, I've stumbled upon something called a bralet.  I think this is the equivalent to a "training bra."

I have noticed that girls start wearing a training bra when one is not needed and not long after... they need one.  No, I don't go around interviewing or ogling young girls, but I think this is generally accepted knowledge.

I have a theory.

I think that wearing a training bra causes the, um, upper growth.  I managed to find a training bra in my band size (bandwidth?) and I've been wearing it regularly.

I see some increase, but it could just be my imagination, or wishful thinking, or normal body changes.

I'll keep trying.

I need a tape measure, but only one measurement. :(

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Simple Pleasure: Terminology

Why is it "a pair of panties" but only one bra?

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Getting Organised

I have some recurring days/nights out: Christine's groups, civilian games, Star's games, clothing swaps.  I'd love to avoid wearing the same thing multiple times.

I've evolved on this.  Not long ago, I wanted to wear each dress or skirt once and then put it aside until I tried EVERYTHING.  I think because I had so many more outfits compared to the number of times I went out, it seemed like a good idea.  Now, I don't mind wearing the same outfit ~ I'd just like to avoid doing so with the same group.

I have a lot of Meg pictures ~ at least a thousand.  My photos are organised by date, or date and event.

Now I have several new folders ~ one for each of the recurring events.  I put one picture of my outfit from each event into the appropriate folder.

Next time I go to a civilian game night I can quickly look at what I wore and (hopefully) choose something different.

One More Thing: I'm firmly on the male crossdresser path.  I think.  Yes, I'm pretty sure I am.  But I have a blog that I read where the author went from "I think I like girl things" to "transition here I come!" in a few short weeks.  She just started blogging in January and WOW!  I never expected the path she and her blog are taking!  It's worth a read, especially if you think "I might be happier as a woman."

Please take a little time to enjoy Ali Finds Her Self.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Once In A Lifetime

So what did last week have to do with trans?

Very little.  Mostly, it was background.

I have several Meg events I haven't written about yet.  The tgirlNation dinner.  The gender study event at a church.  The gender study event at Christine's house.  Some shopping and new clothing.  Friends game day and a soiree at Christine's.

This blog started so I could share a particular event (flying pretty).  I had several goals.

I wanted to help others who might have thought about flying, through my experience.

I wanted to maybe offer an idea to some who might never have thought of doing that, but were at the "what next?" stage of their progress.

On the selfish side, I wanted to write.  I also wanted to push myself to do this somewhat scary thing.  It's like announcing to your friends your giving up smoking.  The announcement helps keep you honest.

Last week was introspection week.  I've been looking at the past year and a half and trying to figure out what happened.

But I've also been looking at the past three years I've been here, online in this blog.

I think I've reached a new plateau.

Going out to dinner with a large group of sisters was a new experience.  Joining a public gender discussion was a new experience.  There were more new experiences, and there will be more new experiences.

But the excitement of new has been replaced with the feeling of normalcy.  Each new Meg experience is now a part of my life.  I'm not sure if that's exciting or mundane.

Traveling to a new city is noteworthy, but blogworthy?  I'm not sure.  Chicago, Detroit, and New York and it's all in the same street.  A typical city involved in a typical daydream.

Traveling to Singapore, South Africa, New Zealand is noteworthy and blogworthy.

Noteworthiness and blogworthiness are both in the eyes(hadow) of the beholder.  Are you, my audience, interested in everything Meg does, in detail?  Shopping, getting ready, going out, what I did, getting back to "normal?"  I don't know.  I try to rely on my muse (and your comments) for direction.

I think moving forward is both note- and blog-worthy.  Permanent hair removal, tricks and tips that might make the transformation easier or faster or more convincing, new levels of acceptance, breaking new ground (is there any?), epiphanies, and so on deserve to be shared.

I do have some insights and ideas that I'd like to share.

I have some links that y'all might enjoy.

But I'm not sure I have seven days a week of interesting material.  I'd like to entertain you, maybe educate you, maybe even make you think.  I feel I'm getting boring.

Right now, I'm going to share what I have but I do need to rethink my way forward.  Please bear with me, and feel free to help me as well.  You can always reach me via comments (write PRIVATE and I won't publish), or send an e-mail to my gmail address, youCanCallMeMeg .

And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
And you may find yourself in another part of the world
And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife
And you may ask yourself
Well...How did I get here?

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
After the money's gone
Once in a lifetime
Water flowing underground

And you may ask yourself
How do I work this?
And you may ask yourself
Where is that large automobile?
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful house
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful wife

Same as it ever was...

Water dissolving...and water removing
There is water at the bottom of the ocean
Under the water, carry the water at the bottom of the ocean
Remove the water at the bottom of the ocean

Letting the days go by
Let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by
Water flowing underground
Into the blue again
Into the silent water
Under the rocks and stones
There is water underground

And you may ask yourself
What is that beautiful house?
And you may ask yourself
Where does that highway go to?
And you may ask yourself
Am I right?...Am I wrong?
And you may say to yourself yourself
My God!...What have I done?!

Same as it ever was...

Look where my hand was
Time isn't holding up
Time is an asterisk

Same as it ever was...

Yeah, the twister comes
Here comes the twister

Same as it ever was...

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Single Panels

Some people can get a laugh in one simple drawing here are a few examples.  Gary Larson is not the only example, just one of the best.  Ever.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

I Love Lila

The Meaning of Lila is a favourite.  John Forgetta's depiction of a group of characters who'd never have made the funny pages ten years ago is wonderful.

Occasionally, there are t-themes but there are always girl themes, and sometimes, that's good enough.

Here are a few random Lilas.

I'm shallow.  Me too.

Either way is good for me

I was born too soon

Friday, May 17, 2013

And you May Ask Yourself / Where Does That Highway Go To?

I just renewed my lease for a year.  Charity is still here.  We split the rent and household expenses.  Charity makes dinner most nights, and I'm having a wider variety of food than I have ever had in my life.

Charity helps Meg.  A lot.  Makeup, advise, company....

I'm not sure what I contribute other than the location and utilities.  IT support?  I'm sure there's something that I do.

And you may ask yourself
Am I right?...Am I wrong?
And you may say to yourself yourself
My God!...What have I done?!

I cannot see the future.  If I could, I probably would have seen what was coming early enough to have done something about it, or at least tried to do something about it.

I can see the past.  I believe that every event, every turn get me where I am today.  Even if where I am was never my goal, I got here.  We got here.  All of us are here because our ancestors and our precursors survived billions of years of evolution.  At times when (man-made or natural) plagues struck, someone survived so we could be here today.  I'm here so I can write these words, you're here so I'm not alone.

That says nothing about the future.

When I take my Memorial Weekend road trip and meet up with some of you, as inconsequential as that is, it's the latest step in billions of years of history.

I like the future.  I'm in it.

My Favourite Dress!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

And You May Tell yourself / This Is Not My Beautiful House

A couple of months after I returned to my house, I started searching for an apartment.  Again, this was a decision move, not a forced move, and I wondered what outside force pushed me to action.  I think a threshold was reached and my brain told me "you have no choice."

I moved out in October.

My plan was to find a roommate, someone from the community who also needed a place to live and be herself.  I was unsuccessful.

I moved out as cheaply as possible.  I signed a seven-month lease, knowing that if I wanted to return to the house after that time it would be at the pleasure of my wife.  I couldn't just walk in and say "I'm back!  What's new?"

My wife suggested I take the living room furniture since we rarely use the living room.  I knew that meant she would like new furniture, but that was fine with me.  I bought a bedroom set.  I took bookshelves from the basement since they held my stuff.  I took my desk and chair and a card table and a couple of folding chairs and some kitchen utensils we did not use.  I bought a microwave and coffee maker.

I was still spending too much on an apartment and continued to look for a roommate.

Since her husband died last November, Charity had been talking about getting out of the house where he died, and getting out of Memphis, where she was living.

This is not what I was looking for, but we discussed her sharing my apartment (I have two bedrooms) and she moved in a month or so after I did.

I really would have liked some more time alone.  I like living alone, but I had already spent a bit of money and was anxious to, if not stanch, at least slow down the bleeding.

Different Glasses.  Fem or Masc?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Simple Pleasure: An Observation

Imagine you are working in a typical office environment.  You hear someone answer "because all of my usual clothes are in the wash" and you look at the speakers.

If the respondent is male, he's generally dressed down for the office.  If the respondent is female, she's generally dressed up for the office.

Also, if it's a business casual office, if a female is dressed up, the most likely remark from a coworker would be "what's the occasion?" or "are you going out after work?" or something similar.

If a male is dressed up, the likely comment is "got a job interview today?"

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Letting The Days Go By / Let The Water Hold Me Down

I'm going to write a bit about my marriage, but only a bit because it obviously involves someone else.

My wife suggested couples therapy.  I agreed to go because I noticed I was sad.  A lot.  I didn't like being sad, and I couldn't even remember when I was happy.  I mean consistently happy, not momentarily happy.
It seemed that the therapy agreed with my wife ~ she seemed happier.

I got sadder.

A few years ago, I felt I was burning out at work.  I was working pretty much continuously for over 30 years and I had an idea.  When we delivered the latest software iteration, I requested a six months unpaid sabbatical.

I didn't use my time off as well as I should have, but it was helpful and I felt better when I returned to work.

I know solutions are not one-size-fits-all, but I suggested to the therapist (and my wife) that I need a sabbatical.  Six months seemed like a good length of time ~ any shorter and it would be tough to move in/out.  But I thought I could cut it short if that's what was needed.

I know that it might be fatal to the marriage, but it was a risk I had to take.  I needed to shake things up and this was the only idea I had.

I felt this would help set my life back on track.

During the couples therapy time, I left my job and started on the job I'm working at now.

I had mentioned to my manager that I might not need parking because I may move out for a bit and I might find someplace close enough to walk/bus to the office.

Not long after I started, my manager said he was leaving the company, but first he was taking six weeks off to househunt in Colorado.  He asked if I'd like to housesit.  I said yes.

The therapist thought it might be a good thing.  I had started seeing another therapist individually (just an EAP thing ~ five sessions) and she thought it was a good idea and might help the marriage and would definitely help me.

I needed it.

The experiment was mixed, because I had to escape from the house on one occasion, and the six weeks became five.  But I did a lot of thinking, a lot of writing, and I came to a conclusion.

It was better.  I wasn't as sad.

Meg was around more, I had fewer worries and more time, and I wasn't as sad.

Yes There Are Jewels

Monday, May 13, 2013

And You May Ask Yourself / Well...How Did I Get Here?

There's not going to be a lot of trans content this week (maybe a "simple pleasure" in addition to the photo at the bottom of the post).  Normally, I feel like I should apologise for that lack, but aren't we all more than pretty clothes?  I think it's all relevant and we can all relate to each other's experiences.  The comments section is open, if you'd like to respectfully disagree. :)

In January, 2012, I was living the American Dream.  Or at least my version of the American Dream.

My marriage was winging towards its 25th anniversary.  I lived in a house in the suburbs.  I had a slightly-below-average number of children, one in college, one on target for college.  I had a good job that paid well, utilised my talents and knowledge, was relatively secure, and let me travel just about the amount I like to travel.  I had no debt and few worries.

Within those intervening 18 months, the dream has turned into... something.  It's not a nightmare, but it's... something.  It's the Bizarro World version of what I had.

My marriage is now winging towards an end.  I still have the house, but I'm living in an apartment.  The boys are doing well, but I don't see them every day and that's painful.  My job changed so much that I had to find something else.  As a topper, the contract seemed iffy.  (For those of you who don't know the pleasure of government contracting, it's a roller coaster of funding/no funding and whims of whatever party is in power today.)

My normal behaviour is very Newtonian.  I travel in a straight line unless an outside force acts on me.  But in the past year, I've made turn after turn without an obvious outside force.  I think I responded to a series of outside nudges.  Or maybe they were so subtle I didn't notice I was going off course until I didn't have a choice.

It's possible I decided to take control of my life and make my own decisions, but that would require a huge change to my self-assessment and I'm not going there.

First, as I said, the job changed.  My position was effectively OBE (overcome by events) and I was moved into a position that a more junior (read: cheaper) employee could handle.  The company knew my worth and kept me on.  I was still paid well but my talents and knowledge were now underutilised, and travel went away abruptly.

And, as I said, the contract security was in doubt.

So last spring I actively sought a new job, with a new company.  And that worked out well.

Also last spring, my wife and I went to couples' therapy.  That didn't work out so well.

Meggy In Disguise (With Glasses)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

One Big Happy

One Big Happy, by Rick Detorie, is a fun strip.  I still haven't figured out exactly who's related to whom ~ my prosopagnosia extends to comic strips too.  Ruthie is the six-year-old that the Peanuts and Dennis the Menace gangs can't touch.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Sometimes I Feel Like She Looks

Pooch Cafe has an occasionally recurring character named Droolia.  She, um, drools.  A lot.  And that's not her only non-feminine trait.  I haven't figured out if Droolia is a very ugly girl, or a very pretty monster.

But sometimes... sometimes I look in the mirror and think "I might pass, and if I work really hard, I might be considered to be practically a "one."

She's ALWAYS after little Poo Poo

It doesn't work for me either. :(

Friday, May 10, 2013

Busy Meg Weekend

Tonight, Meg will be going to a civilian event.

Tomorrow night, Meg will be attending a trans event.

Sunday night, Meg will go to a mixed event.

And I PROMISE I will try to get pictures and post in a timely manner!

I don't remember ever doing three days in a row before.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

It's Taking Too Long

There's a shop not far from here called "Mae's Dress Boutique."  They advertised regularly in the Washington Post, but not your typical ad.  They had an eighth page ad with a picture and a border describing the types of dresses, such as "mother of the bride."

They never mentioned a price, and I think the fact that I always was nearby when in drab and the idea that I was out of my league kept me out of the shop.  It felt very upscale, and I am anything but upscale.  Plus, for some reason, I found the name intimidating.

There was another women's clothing chain that took a while to get over the "entry barrier."  I forget the name, but they were only open on weekends and had a name that just seemed to say "ladies only" to me.  I did finally go in there once and found nothing, except for a sea of estrogen.  I recall it was ALL women and me (in drab; this was before I went out, but I was thinking about it).

Last week, I had a little extra time ~ my next client didn't want me there before 4:30 and I left my previous client at 3:00 and my drive took me right past Mae's.  I stopped.  I walked over and the shop had mirrored windows all around.  There was a Chipotle next door which also had mirrored windows.  It was part of a low office building.  I was unsure, after all this time, about going in.  It just didn't feel right.

So I walked around a bit.  I walked to the next block and around the office building there, past nail places and salons and medical offices.  On the next block, I found a small consignment shop.  I went in.

It was very nice.  Clothing was tagged with multiple prices and dates: after each date, the price would drop.  They had some very nice jewelry, but I wasn't really looking for jewelry at the moment.  I saw some lovely dresses and skirts, but the ones I coveted were not in my size.

I left empty-handed and walked back to Mae's, ready to go in even though it would just be for a few minutes.

Mae's is gone.  The store is for rent.

My trip to "I don't care" needs to be an express, not a local.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Simple Pleasure: Open Planning II

A woman comes home with a new dress and takes off what she's wearing and slips it on and decides if it's right and moves on.

I would bring home a dress and it would sit in the bag or on a hanger until I had time to get the "infrastructure" in place: padded bra at a minimum; cinch and padded panty for the full effect.  A woman's quick slip-on-slip-off moment becomes a ten minute event as I slip on and slip off up to a half-dozen items (I'm counting each pad).

Now, I can cut that slip-on-slip-off time down to just slip-on.  It's fine for me to leave on the dress (or last dress, if I bought a few), or to pick something else out of the Meg Collection to wear for the rest of the day.

What used to be a rushed event has become much more of a girl moment, and often the start of a girl evening.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

I Believe in Signs

I also believe that signs are ALWAYS ambiguous.  I also also believe that one never knows a sign when she sees it.

So an ambulance speeding by might be a warning sign that I should slow down.  Or it might be a signal sign that I should hurry to my destination ~ something might be wrong there.  Or it might mean something bad happened to someone else and it has no bearing on me (other than the fact that we're all connected).

I wrote about my dilemma Friday ~ should I introduce myself to Charity's coworkers as Meg without any real warning? ~ and I got a brief note from my crossdress idol, Stana.  She wrote:

"It is time to push the envelope, Girlfriend!"

Stana rarely comments on my blog ~ I wasn't even sure I was still on her radar.  A sign!  Hey, signs don't always come from the Universe At Large.

But did it mean I should go dressed and not worry about what Charity's friends think, or did it mean I should be free to go in drab and let them meet both of me and deal with it later?

See what I mean?

Annie and Joanie left comments that were much clearer.  They wrote GET DRESSED AND GO OUT.  I paraphrase. :)

Admittedly, I should have posted it earlier in the week and done a minipoll:

            () go dressed
            () go drab
            () stay home

In the end, the idea of getting up at 6:00, grabbing a quick breakfast and getting to the metro at 7:00 beat out getting up at 4:00, shaving, showering, makeuping (that should be a verb!), dressing, and getting to the metro at 7:00.

And, really, that was the deciding point: how little sleep did I want to get?  I moved a bit closer to the I Don't Care mark and decided it's OK for Charity's friend to meet me, and meet Meg later on.

Funny thing... while there, a woman came up to me and asked me if I'd be willing to be in a documentary.  I suggested that Charity would be better, and perhaps her friends as well.  Her friends demurred but Charity was more than willing.  I wonder if she would have approached Meg for her documentary.  I'll never know.

So somewhere there's footage of Charity and me, talking about the Eastern Market.  (In the interest of full disclosure, it was mostly Charity talking about the Eastern Market and me nodding my head.)  It was for a project, not theatrical release so I suspect no-one I know will ever see it, but still... it's pretty cool.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Politically Incorrect

For some reason, an old advertising jingle has been stuck in my mind.  I had to verify the words, because I couldn't believe I remembered them correctly.

My post idea: I'd post the real words and how funny it is that I remembered them differently.

Well, it turns out I had it right.  Does anyone remember Armour hot dogs?
Is she fat?  Skinny?  Tough?  Sissy?

The jingle went:

Hot dogs, Armour hot dogs.
What kinds of kids eat Armour hot dogs?
Fat kids, skinny kids, kids who climb on rocks.
Tough kids, sissy kids
Even kids with chicken pox
Love hotdogs, Armour hot dogs
The dogs kids love to bite!

Sissy kids?  Really?  Is that the opposite of "tough kids?"  Is "kids who climb on rocks" the opposite of "kids with chicken pox?"

I want to go back in time and be in the meeting where they discuss keeping that ad campaign or maybe, just maybe, changing it a bit.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

It's Herman Time!

(Holiday note:  I neglected to  mention that yesterday was Star Wars Day.  Happy belated Star Wars Day ["May the Fourth"].  And I know Cinco de Mayo is sometimes soon, but I can never remember what day.)

Many years ago, I was perusing the humour section of the local chain bookstore.  That's one thing I miss with the local stores ~ just browsing, whether it's humour books, or scifi books, or computer books (or dresses and tights and shoes).  It's just not the same on-line.

Anyway, I came across an oversize book of Jim Unger cartoons.  I opened it up.  I laughed a lot.  I bought it (something else I miss ~ bringing your latest find home with you), along with a couple of other oversize Unger books.  They had simple names like "Herman VII" and "Herman VIII" but that just told me I had some catching up to do.

Mr Unger took ill a number of years ago and retired, then he unretired and started only updating old strips so they were more timely.  Alas, all of the new cartoons are old cartoons: Mr Unger died almost a year ago.

I think this is his sixth appearance in the blog.

Here are some recent favourites:

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Say What?

I've enjoyed Sherman's Lagoon for a long time.  Sherman's been in here at least a half-dozen times.  Back when screen savers were somewhat new, I had a Sherman's Lagoon one that had various fish swimming across the screen.  If a swordfish swam into a pufferfish, the pufferfish popped.  If a shark met a certain small fish the shark would gulp the little guy down.  Other than that, it was just... fish and stuff.

Before the Washington Post picked up Sherman, I had another reason to enjoy it: the images were in a predictable place with predictable names, and they appeared a week ahead of the newspaper.  So once a week I would load a personal page that gave me next week's Sherman.  Alas, that no longer works, but I still love the strip.  Who would think a strip that involves sharks eating "hairless beach apes" would be funny?  Remember to click to enlarge.

What?  No Herman on stage? :(

Friday, May 3, 2013


Charity plans to go downtown on Saturday.  She asked if I'd like to come along and since it's to a part of Washington I've never been, I tentatively agreed.  I wasn't sure if I'd be in drab or dressed though.

Advantage of dressing: everything is more fun in dresses.  It's going to be a beautiful, warm day and I can eschew coats or sweaters and just wear a casual dress or skirt.  It's an eclectic part of town where Meg should fit right in.

Advantage of drab: we'd be going early in the morning so I'd have to get up early early.

Then she came home with the news that a friend from work and her SO wanted to go as well.

This changes the calculus.

Charity has no preference as to how I present.  Her friend doesn't know about Meg, and it's possible she'll meet my male self in the future.

At this point in time, I'm not comfortable meeting someone as Meg who will most likely get to know my male self at some other, future point.  In some cases, I can stretch that comfort zone and meet people either way, but that's mostly t-friends or people in another t-circle.

I've met a couple of t-girls as my male self.  I've met Star's friends in both modes, but Star has a circle of friends who've met her SO, Andrea, in both male and female presentation.  Yes, I don't know what they whisper to their friends after they leave.  Yes, I don't know if they mind their own business regarding their friend, but not regarding a friend-of-a-friend.  There's a level of trust here.  I don't know if it's warranted but I grant that trust.

I've been to swaps in both modes, but the only person who has met both is Kim and her husband.  I trust both.  Kim is wonderful and her husband seems like a very live-and-let-live kind of guy.

But I don't know Charity's co-worker.  I do know that there seem to be few secrets at work, and I don't know her other co-workers.

I could join them in drab, but I'd feel locked in and unable to "upgrade" later.  I could join them dressed, but eventually they'll learn my birth name (if they don't know it already) and that might cause issues.  Probably not, and maybe I'll be over that "I don't care" hump by then, but I have a poor record at predicting the future.

Besides, I have some things I need to do at home.

"So, do you have any plans for the weekend?"  "Um..."  Yes, this is definitely a "don't ask, can't tell" situation.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Fame and Wealth?

There was someone from Voice of America at the last clothing swap.  The marvellous Kim was the subject of a long interview and the reporter wandered around, chatting and shooting video.  I saw myself in the background of a couple of shots (long light blue dress) but I was not one of the lucky ones who was interviewed directly.  Funny....  None of us were.  I'm sure it was just numbers.  We were maybe 10 out of 300 ~ 3%.  He spoke with a half-dozen women.

I did like the headline: 

Social Media Draw More US Women to Clothing Swaps 

You can find video and a story on the VoANews website.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Simple Pleasure: Open Planning

When it's time to prep for dress up, I can now take out what I want when I want to.

In the past, I needed to plan just to plan.

Now, I can pull out some dress options and try them on when I have time, not when those around me have time.  It's much more relaxing when I don't have to make time twice ~ once for choosing and trying on, once for going out.  And sometimes that first opportunity never presents itself and I have to take extra "getting ready" time to ensure I have the right outfit.  Or sometimes it takes a few short stolen moments to choose and try on.  And, of course, hide everything away in their own boxes and bags.

And today is the first of May....
Ted: Mayday! Mayday!
Steve: "Mayday," what the heck is that?
Johnny: Mayday? Why, that's the Russian New Year! We can have a big parade and serve hot hors d'oeuvres...