i want to believe
Today’s Gender of the day is: the white purity of God
Ippei Gyoubu es un fantástico ilustrador y diseñador gráfico japonés, que combina de una manera única la ilustración contemporánea japonesa y el mundo de los videojuegos.
El mismo Ippei Gyoubu denomina su estilo de ilustración como “Japanesque” combinando un toque de manga con otro tanto de pop art.
Ippei Gyoubu nació en 1974, el dibujo siempre fue su medio de expresión, tomando como base los dibujos animados y cómics que leía de niños.
Su carrera comienza cuando inicia a diseñar personajes para una compañía de videojuegos, gracias a estas ilustraciones comenzó a ganarse un nombre dentro de la industria.El proceso de Ippei es el de dibujar sus bocetos o dummys para después escanearlas e ilustrarlas a nivel digital.
Los personajes de Ippei suelen ser chicas para denotar mas sensualidad, que el color sea más intenso, la composición sea mas armónica y la ilustración más detallada.
Con un estilo muy occidental para el publico oriental y bastante oriental para el occidente, Ippei Gyoubu queda en el punto perfecto de establecerse a nivel mundial gracias a su fantástico trabajo.
Si tu deseas conocer más acerca de Ippei Gyoubu te invito a dar clic en su página web para que conozcas mas de sus obras.
Texto por: Ernesto Iniesta
nms and nws and oh yes please
Kim Kardashian Human Centipede shirt
I honestly don’t know where to begin with this collection of shirts by Cleveland, OH company, Rage On!. Except that I agree with their motto as their strangely wonderful shirts...
Japanese fast food chain Mos Burger has built a reputation over the years for its healthy burger options. For those with an aversion to traditional wheat-based buns, Mos Burger offers versions made with grilled rice patties. And if you’re counting calories, they’ll simply wrap your filling in lettuce.
Now there’s an even more impressive option for health-conscious customers: a burger stuffed between two halves of a giant tomato. Available after 2:00pm from only one outlet in Japan, we stopped by to check out the rare red burger, taking lots of delicious photos for you along the way!
Limited sales of the tomato-bun burger can only be found at the Think Park Plaza store in Osaki, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo.
We’ve come for the Toma-mi Burger, which combines the word ‘tomato’ with the character 実 (mi, meaning fruit, seed or nut). Although it’s technically a fruit, the humble tomato was classified as a vegetable for culinary purposes after a U.S. Supreme Court Ruling in 1893. The more you know!
Mos Burger has always made a point of using thick slices of locally-grown tomatoes in their products. Now it’s the star of the show, as the piece that holds it all together – literally.
The unusual burger is only available as part of a set, which includes a glass filled with more tomatoes instead of a serving of fries, for 880 yen (US$7.12). Seeing as the meal is designed to help customers get over the summer heat, we decide to really put it to the test by sitting outside under the hot Japanese sun.
The Caprese salad contains classic ingredients: fresh tomatoes, basil, mozzarella cheese and an olive oil and balsamic dressing. The flavours were fantastic and the cool tomato pieces refreshing. We loved the fact that it was served in a glass with a small silver fork!
The red roundness of the tomato ‘bun’ had been enticing us from the minute we set eyes on it.
Looking inside, we found a massive tomato, at least the size of a regular Mos bun, cut in half and filled with a classic patty, onion, lettuce combination. The patty wasn’t piping hot, which meant it went well with the cold tomato casing, and the whole thing was surprisingly easy to bite into as the skin on the vegetable was nice and firm. This was one good-quality tomato!
The initial bite was an odd experience because we were waiting for the usual chewiness of the bread bun. Instead, we really noticed the crunch of the lettuce, but the flavour of the tomato really sang as the hero of the dish. When we looked closely, we could see the hole where the core had been carefully removed.
This is definitely an impressive summer burger. It left a clean feeling in the mouth and we actually felt healthy after eating it! There was no strong meat flavour and despite the huge amount of sauce, which meant we couldn’t remove the beast from its package for fear of major spillage, it didn’t overpower the other ingredients or make them soggy.
So, do we recommend the Toma-mi Burger? A resounding yes. We’d order another one in a heartbeat!
But would we eat it outside again in the humidity of a Japanese summer?
Now that’s the question that’s hard to answer!
Source and Featured Image: Mos Burger
Photos © RocketNews24
Origin: Japanese burger chain Mos Burger replaces its buns with two halves of a giant tomato
Copyright© RocketNews24 / SOCIO CORPORATION. All rights reserved.
TW: blacklight body fluids
With the unrelenting flow of new animated series produced in Japan, the country’s hyper-otaku could always use some extra cash to pay for the latest and greatest anime goodies. To raise those funds, many superfans eventually cycle out the stuff they’re tired of by selling it online or to a retailer specializing in used items. On the other side of that equations, if you’re an anime fan, but not the hardest of the hardcore, you can pick up used Blu-rays and DVDs at attractive discounts from their original prices.
You can even find anime character figures for sale in the second-hand market, but there are a couple of things you’ll want to investigate before buying a used statuette. First, you’ll want to make sure it’s in good, scratch-free condition. Double-checking that it’s not a cheaply made knockoff is also a good idea.
But while doing your homework in important, there’s also one thing to remember after the deal is done and you’ve got your used figure sitting on your shelf: Whatever you do, don’t shine a black light on it.
If you’re reading this at work, be advised that things are going to get pretty gross from here on!
This cautionary public service announcement was brought to the attention of collectors by Japanese Twitter user SR Cobra P, who recently sent out the following tweet.
SRコブラP (@mobamasuP) July 27, 2015
The included screen capture seems to be a comment section or forum from a website for figure fans, with the first post being from someone who recently sold a figure of his, but felt the need to add the following disclaimer:
“About the [Busou] Shinki figure I sold. If you shine a black light on it, some patches on its surface should light up, but I cut my hand with a craft knife. That’s all it is, so don’t make any strange assumptions.”
Some of the other users thought the figure reseller doth protest too much, though, as his comment triggered responses such as “Like anyone would believe that!” and “If someone licked the figure, the parts where he did will light up right away under a black light. The only problem with that method is you won’t be able to tell if it’s saliva or bukkake.”
Sort of like how having a waiter tell you not to touch a hot plate makes you want to touch it all the more, some of the other users found their curiosity irresistibly piqued, and began posting pictures of figures in the middle of a black light test. “My figure looks like this…no good?” asked the uploader of the following photo.
“No! No good at all!” came the vehement reply. Seriously, that looks way too fresh…”
But things were about to get grosser still, as the next image was accompanied with the description “By the way, this is how a figure that’s been bukkaked on looks like under a black light.”
You know, maybe there are some things you just shouldn’t ever buy used.
Origin: Here’s why you should never shine a black light on a used anime character figure
Copyright© RocketNews24 / SOCIO CORPORATION. All rights reserved.
Stray Witch by Savannah Horrocks
Miya Inoue is the kimono-clad owner of the chain of bars in Tokyo’s Yushima neighborhood operating under the Kesho Danshi brand staffed primarily by transgender women. She also built the interior of the first location herself by hand, drawing on her previous work experience as a carpenter. As the “Big Mama” of Kesho Danshi, Miya spends her time managing the staff at three locations, chatting with customers, and, amazingly, remembering everyone’s name. Oh, and did we mention she’s written an inspiring book about her life?
If you’re looking for good conversation and a fun place to drink in Tokyo, you can’t find a much better place than sitting across the counter from Miya or any of the welcoming staff members. Click below to take a visit to all three of the Kesho Danshi locations and listen in on our chat with “Miya Big Mama” yourself.
Translated literally, “Kesho Danshi” means “Makeup Men” or “Cosmetics Boys” in English, but neither of these terms really makes sense to me. Even in Japanese, it has an air of ambiguity — a sense of something that should be easy to understand, but isn’t quite. Perhaps a large part of the reason for this is simply the fluidity that Miya embodies. She uses the word “transgender” to describe herself and staff of the Kesho Danshi bars, but, as she writes in her book, hers is “an alluring life of swimming freely through a river that flows between male and female.” I don’t think simple definitions are going to work here.
▼ Miya signing a copy of her book for RocketNews24
Miya opened Kesho Danshi because, she told me, there wasn’t anything like it at the time. She had experience with Japan’s transgender and gay bars, of which there is hardly a shortage, but she found many of them to be a bit too loud for her taste. What she envisioned was something like Kesho Danshi AYA, her third location — a quiet bar with a sophisticated air that encourages patrons to sit and talk. There’s nothing wrong with getting rowdy and having fun, but if you want to actually communicate with someone, a typical bar isn’t necessarily the best place to go.
▼ The menu is hand-crafted, both on the inside…
▼ …and outside.
For Miya, communication is incredibly important. She loves talking with people, particularly the “unique” people who make up the bulk of her customers, she says when I ask who the typical patron is. With three locations, Kesho Danshi has multiple faces, just like the staff who work behind the counters and just like anyone else in the world.
To see another of Kesho Danshi’s faces, step outside, head up the stairs, turn left, and take a few paces down the street to find another Kesho Danshi sign. Then, head downstairs to Kesho Danshi WAKASHU, the original location. While AYA features nothing but low bench seating that still manages to keep you eye-level with the staff, WAKASHU features a slightly rawer interior with bare wood and high stools. A bit brighter and a little louder, WAKASHU has a winter theme — AYA’s theme is autumn — and its staff is sure to make you feel right at home, quickly launching into conversation with customers new and old alike.
▼ A snack served at Kesho Danshi AYA
One block over, Kesho Danshi SAGA’s theme is spring, which manifests as karaoke and the boisterous laughter of its patrons. While the other Kesho Danshi locations specifically engender personal communication, SAGA feels like a throwback to the Bubble Era, when it seemed as if everyone in Japan were going to be rich forever. Though the national bubble popped, at SAGA, you can forget about the last couple of decades and enjoy drinking whiskey served by the kimono-clad staff while singing enka classics.
▼ A menu at WAKASHU
Back at AYA, I found myself caught in conversation with Miya, whose curiosity and grace know no bounds. With news of the LGBT community’s Supreme Court win in the US still buzzing in my mind, I asked Miya to tell me about the community in Japan. I wasn’t sure what to expect — great strides have been made in advancing LGBT rights in Japan, but it must surely be difficult to remain patient with the slow pace of change.
At least, that’s what I thought. Miya explained that over the last decade the community has received a lot of focus, from both inside and outside the country, and she said that at times it can feel like everything is finally coming together. But at the same time, she wonders if change is coming too fast. “I think it’s causing some shock for people not in the community,” she adds. Echoing a sentiment that we’re sure people around the world intuitively understand, she explains that you can change the law all you want, but it takes individual effort by all of us to change hearts and minds.
▼ Take a peek inside AYA, WAKASHU, and SAGA with us in the video below!
But while there may be a long road ahead for people seeking acceptance, Miya had a powerful and beautiful message for all of our lovely readers: “There are transgender people in Japan too, and we’re doing our best to live happy lives. So, don’t feel like you are alone.” It’s a message not just for our transgender readers but for everyone. As Koharu Mama, the boss at WAKASHU, says, “People aren’t one-dimensional.”
If you’re heading to any of the fine Kesho Danshi establishments, you might be wondering what day of the week is best for your first visit. Obviously, the character of a bar changes with the crowd, but Koharu Mama told us that Saturdays see lots of first-timers at WAKASHU, as well as people who can only enjoy wearing the clothes they feel most comfortable in on the weekend. If you’re looking for a bit of excitement, Fridays and Saturdays are sure to be fun, and if you’re looking for a quieter evening out, we’d suggest stopping by on a weekday night.
Perhaps the most important thing to remember, though, is that all of the Kesho Danshi bars are for everyone. You don’t have to do anything but share a drink the staff and customers and enjoy yourself!
WAKASHU BAR, Kesho Danshi
Address: 3-38-3 Yushima, Bunkyou-ku, Tokyo
Hours: 7:30 p.m.-Whenever customers stop ordering
SAGA, Kesho Danshi
Address: 3-38-15, Yushima, Bunkyou-ku, Tokyo
Hours: 8 p.m.-Whenever customers stop ordering
AYA, Kesho Danshi
Address: 3-38-3 Yushima, Bunkyou-ku, Toyo
Hours: 8 p.m.-Whenever customers stop ordering
References: Kesho Danshi, Amazon Japan (Kesho Danshi: Jinsei wo Nibai Tanoshimu Houhou),
All images © RocketNews24
Origin: Kesho Danshi: Visiting Yushima’s sublime transgender bars
Copyright© RocketNews24 / SOCIO CORPORATION. All rights reserved.
Once upon a time, Joe Strummer wrote and directed Hell W10, a silent black & white film featuring the music of The Clash. And the Pixies’ Black Francis created a driving, jangling soundtrack for one of Weimar Germany’s finest silent films, The Golem: How He Came into the World (1920).
If the melding of vintage and modern aesthetics appeals, then get ready for Gutterdämmerung. Directed by the Belgian-Swedish visual artist Björn Tagemose, Gutterdämmerung promises to be “the loudest silent movie on earth,” with Iggy Pop, Grace Jones and Henry Rollins playing starring roles. BEAT describes the premise of the film as follows:
The film is set in a alternate reality where God has saved the world from sin by taking from mankind the Devil’s Evil Guitar. As a result the Earth has been cleansed into a puritan world with no room for sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll (boo). [Queue] Iggy Pop as the punk angel Vicious, who secretly sends the Evil Guitar back to Earth, unleashing all manner of sin upon mankind.
Things get even crazier when Henry Rollins, as the puritan priest, coerces a girl to destroy the guitar, a quest that see’s her face the most evil rock ‘n’ roll bastards on the planet. Grace Jones plays the only person capable of controlling all the testosterone of all the no good rock ‘n’ rollers – obviously.
The director and cast set the scene a little more in the “launch video” above. To be honest, the video feels a bit like a spoof, making me wonder whether this is all a big put on. But they’ve certainly set up a respectable web site where, each week, they’ll announce other personalities starring in the film. So, stay tuned…
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%%POST_LINK%% is a post from: Open Culture. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, or get our Daily Email. And don't miss our big collections of Free Online Courses, Free Online Movies, Free eBooks, Free Audio Books, Free Foreign Language Lessons, and MOOCs.
Supplying more fun than can reasonably be expected at the optician’s, these intriguing lenses created by Hungarian designer Bence Agoston for a 3D printer enable psychedelic visual experiences while requiring the insertion of round optical lenses into the waiting slots—the effects include “...
"Fully nine out of 10 mayors surveyed expressed concern about the state of race relations and police in their city, according to the survey, with nearly a third describing themselves as “deeply concerned” about race and policing in their cities."
also: "On the question of which presidential contender they’d most like to see elected for president in 2016... One mayor offered only: “Not Donald Trump.”" lol
Back in March, Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians, in the wake of Sarah Thomas being named the first full-time female referee in the NFL, was asked when female coaches would become a reality in the league. His response: “The minute they can prove they can make a player better, they’ll be hired.”
Three months later, the Cardinals are giving a female coach the chance to prove that point. Jen Welter, a coach from the Indoor Football League with a PhD in psychology and a master’s degree in sports psychology, has been brought on as a preseason coaching intern concentrating on inside linebackers.
Welter is a former college rugby player who is also a veteran of 14 years in pro football, primarily in the Women’s Football Alliance. It’s already apparent that players appreciate her bona fides in the game.
AFC player in text to me on Jen Welter: ""The truth is, she has more playing experience than some of the coaches who coach me now."
— mike freeman (@mikefreemanNFL) July 28, 2015
While it’s fair to point out that the Cardinals haven’t actually hired Welter, even giving her a temporary intern position amounts to progress and hopefully will mean more opportunities in the future.
Naturally, Arians has already had to deflect the usual questions thrown out any time someone who isn’t a straight white male experiences a first in the NFL.
Arians added he had talked to the veterans on the Cardinals to tell them what he was going to do and “they were all very cool with it.”
“It’s not going to be a distraction in any way,” Arians said.
Along with Welter, the Cardinals have brought on former Steelers and Eagles linebacker Levon Kirkland to work with the team’s outside linebackers during the preseason as part of the Bill Bidwill Coaching Fellowship, a program to help recently retired players get coaching experience.
— Dr. Jen Welter (@jwelter47) July 28, 2015
Thanks el_jorge and Parts Kit!
somebody call the Unskewed Polls guy
$45ish US before import fees. we'll see.
I remember when this video went viral back in 2011. It’s of a young guy giving zero fucks while on a slingshot ride somewhere in Florida. Well, thanks to the Internet—where old memes and viral videos just won’t die—it’s reemerged again with a soundtrack of Simon & Garfunkel’s “...
We’ve bought a new house. And our new next door neighbours (two delightful gentlemen) will not stop being nice.
- bought us a seagull proof refuse bag (yes, they are actual things)
- loaned us garden tools when we didn’t have any
- invited us around for Friday night drinks so we could meet the other people on the lane
- one of them brought me a bunch of sweetpea flowers that he’d picked from his garden
- and tomorrow he’s coming to cut our hedge for us with his electric hedge trimmer thing idk, and all I have to do is hold the ladder.
Basically, I am UNSETTLED and am now having to enter into an arms race of niceness and I am already so behind oh god.
Long story short - I just baked a lemon drizzle cake, and it looks great but I can’t even eat it because MR AND MR NICE MUST RECEIVE AN OFFERING.
ABSOLUTE CRISIS I GAVE THEM THE LEMON DRIZZLE AND THEN THEY INVITED ME IN TO HAVE A SLICE AND A COFFEE WITH THEM AND GAVE ME A TOUR OF THEIR HOUSE AND LET ME HOLD THEIR PUPPY. AND THEN THEY CAME AROUND TO HELP ME BAG UP THE HEDGE CLIPPINGS. THESE MEN ARE NICENESS PROS AND I CANNOT WIN.
HELP WE HAD AN HOUR LONG POWER CUT ON THE STREET AND IN THAT TIME THE OTHER MR NICE CAME AROUND WITH MATCHES AND CANDLES ‘JUST IN CASE YOU DIDN’T HAVE ANY’. IT WAS BARELY DARK.
BASTARDS - I’M GOING TO HAVE TO HOST A DINNER PARTY AREN’T I?
Duggars get “Punk’d” Part 7
I recently discovered an Instagram called Pop Culture Goes Punk where they take photos of celebrities and turn them punk. The Duggars show up very often on this page, and some of them look great, some terrifying, others are hilarious. I decided to do a multi-part photo series featuring their work with photos of the Duggars. Enjoy!
WHAT IS THIS
WHAT IS THIS
IS THIS A LIBRARY IN A THEATRE
ALL OF MY DREAMS HAVE JUST COME TRUE
oh. oh my god.
this is genuinely the most beautiful thing i have ever seen
This is a book store called El Ateneo in Buenos Aires, Argentina! You can have coffee while sitting on the stage. One of my favorite places in my city.
It’s a BOOKSTORE?!
there are balconies where you can sit to read too
and that’s the stage where you can have a coffee :)
This is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.
this is an amazing combination of my mom’s career and my career in one space
I want one
I used to have this friend Sara. She was quiet, she was an alcoholic, she loved drugs, she loved really weird stuff; she kept dead animals in her freezer. She was obsessed with dead things; she wished she was dead so she could be pretty. She was a little older than me, I forget exactly how much. Five-ish years maybe.
I met her in the fall of 2007, when I was re-trying to come out and make moves toward transition. I was 20. Sara’d moved up to Portland and in with a friend, which is how we met, and the first day we did I was wearing a skirt. She thought the skirt was pretty. She was animated about it. She squealed in a way that would have had me eye-rolling years later but back then was like water.
She worked at Victoria’s Secret downtown in the mall. The next time I saw her she said: “I have something for you!” And she put in my hands a pair of girl underwear. They were cotton white with red webbing on the sides, and pictures of apples sliced in half on them. I loved them. I hugged her. She squealed again. And that was it. And the next time I saw her she gave me another pair. Which she did sporadically every time she saw me for well over a year.
It’s hard to think clearly about that point in my life. I’ve started and deleted a few sentences that seem representative. I don’t know. I’ll try. I was living with my old dudely best friend from high school, going to classes, smoking a lot of weed, and feeling really sad. Sometimes I talked about being trans; no one was kind to me about it. A lot of people were mean, many apprehensive and condescending—and there were some people who were nice. Which I cherished. But there’s a difference between nice and kind. That’s semantics I guess, but it’s how I feel: Nice is the thing that won’t hold up against meanness and coldness and cruelty; kind is the thing that does. It’s not always proportionate to the effort a person puts in either, though sometimes it is. Apply that however you like.
I’ve written elsewhere about this period (my essay in Untangling The Knot, mostly) and I don’t know what good it does to type it all out again here. Let’s just say that even in Portlandia it was still not popular or cool in any liberal or gay circle to like trans women, let alone actively support and think about trans women, and there were literally no trans women I would meet and befriend for a while, none, period (Though that fall I would see Elena Rose perform this piece, which was so powerful and I will never forget it.)
I did know and befriend a lot of let’s-end-gender AFAB type folks, and they didn’t really know what to do with me crying about wanting to be “seen as a girl” or “just wanting to be a girl for a little bit”, which was the language I had at the time. Those folks were trying to get away from that—Imogen’s MRR column of a bit ago about it touches on this exactly. (Queer Community’s still like that in a lot of ways, of course, but trans lady culture is easier to find now in a way that just was so, so much harder back then.) Whipping Girl had just come out, it definitely wasn’t close to penetrating my crowd; the idea that trans women would always be men had a lot of currency and the idea that trans women were women, unconditionally, full stop, was an idea virtually no one but trans women were espousing. It just wasn’t a thing. And I didn’t know any trans women, wouldn’t have an actual conversation with a trans woman until 2009. So. You know.
My other group of friends were high school hometown folks from Eugene, young Democrat types who were down with the gays but still weirded and grossed out by trans girls. I could run around in skirts and that was fine to a point (and I felt blessed for that freedom—still do, really), yet no one wanted me to transition and a lot of people I desperately loved said that loudly and meanly and nobody was there to tell me anything else.
It’s hard to speak plainly and unsentimentally about your womanhood being so unloved—I so badly, and not unconsciously, just wanted someone to tell me that I could be a girl and that being a girl was ok. I did a good job (for the most part) of acting bouncy and happy during that time but I was dying inside. That period of 2006-2009 was my own version of a James H time, I guess—I knew I was trans but I also believed I could never be a woman. I’m grateful it only lasted three-ish years! Yet I’ve still got a lot of bile and crud built up in me from living like that.
Whenever I talk about this point of my life, I usually do so in the context of being disillusioned with queer community and the pervasiveness of transmisogyny in liberal/queer circles/etcetc. But I’ve rarely talked about Sara. What she did for me was so kind, it was a kindness and love and validation I received nowhere else and I can’t begin talking about what it meant to me. I don’t know. It was never a production when she gave me new underwear, it was never creepy or condescending at all, it was always just “Hey, I got these for you.” Like it was the most natural thing in the world. Which, even in my emotionally blanked-out state, it was. She stole underwear for her cis girl friends too. (Which, it probably goes without saying, never slipped my mind for a second.) She wasn’t a gregarious or a performative person, and in public especially she was quiet and shy and nervous, she wanted to be dead. And I doubt she intended it to be this big a deal but she did this thing I’ve never forgotten. She vanished from social media years ago and I don’t talk to the people who knew her anymore. The one trace of her on Google is a student art show she did last year in another state; it’s nice to see she’s both making stuff and alive.
I’ve been thinking lately about social justice Internet discourse and the way we’re supposed to be allies/showing solidarity/etc. I’ve been thinking about the obsessiveness of *We’re Doing It Wrong Here’s Another Way We’re Doing It Wrong* articles and posts and tweets. I’m not thinking about toxicity or rage or judgement, though like you (I’m going to guess) I’ve felt call-out culture breed enough cruelty to want to Never Discuss Anything Again—see any of a dozen wise pieces from Katherine Cross but especially this one and this one. And I’m not thinking about performative politics, though like you (I’m going to guess) I’ve felt political posturing both offline and on get so gross and meaninglessly unproductive. And I’ve taken part in my own share of rage and posturing.
What I’ve been thinking about lately is how social justice Internet discourse promises a nourishment, gives us a goal and something to work towards, gives us a feeling of purification when we discover more things to cut out of our lives, more things to toss aside for being Wrong. It always reminds me of a feeling that a lot of secular people never understood about the intense religiosity I was raised with: The yearning I used to feel for purity, the desire for clear markers on how to be clean, holy, how to live a Godly life, a yearning by no means unique to religious people. It wasn’t born of rage nor posturing but genuine desperation.
If rage is one side of call-out culture’s coin, the other side is the promise of How You Can Be Better. The promise of easy guidance in this hopelessly shifting monster world of Hydra-like evil. The titles of those Everyday Feminism articles, so well-intentioned, always read to me like the worst magazine articles that prey on insecurities, or like the preachers my grandmother watched: “Popular Foods You Need To Stop Eating” “Turn To This Bible Verse In A Time Of Need!” “Oppressive Words To Remove From Your Vocabulary.” Right. Now.
My point is not that social justice Internet discourse is bad! (I think it’s easy to forget how much good it’s done, actually, but that’s another post.) And my point is not that cis people just need to stop reading Everyday Feminism and start blanketing their local trans woman with stolen panties (as fun as that could be for a week). I’m not sure if I know what my fucking point is. I just keep thinking about how, in our day-to-day personal messy-as-fuck human lives where we have to interact with other messy-as-fuck humans, where people are fucking and yelling and working and dying, it’s so easy to overlook who is not receiving kindness and why. And that lots of this “How To Be An Ally To Trans Women” stuff that has sprang up in the last couple years sometimes leaves me feeling really empty, feels so disconnected from the problem every human with a conscience is faced with: of how to be good to the complex people you come face-to-face with in your every day life. Does anybody else feel this way about stuff written about them? Anybody who sorts through People Are Trying To Ally At Me, not just trans women? I don’t want to be a 20-year-old in 2007 anymore—God, I don’t. But 95% of the time when people Ally at me, I still feel myself floating away behind glass until they stop. In the best case senario.
“It’s horrifying!” said the cis gay dude employed as a youth programmer at the LGBT non-profit who brought me in to do a workshop last year at a youth camp. He’d done some training thing in Toronto about trans women. He had the most concerned face. “I didn’t realize all these things about transmisogyny!” This was the summary of his thoughts on the subject. I would love to be gracious about that in an objective sense, think it was a net good he went to whatever that training was, that he needed something like that, that he was gonna be the guy working this job whether he was trying or not—and hey, maybe he’s doing good things for young trans girls right now and a minimal amount of harm. And maybe neither of those things is the case in a serious way—I wish I could be starry eyed about it, but knowing from the previous two years volunteering there how ignorant everyone in that organization was personally about trans women (and where, of course, no trans women worked) He said some nice and correct things but I still left it just feeling so oogy.
But regardless of thinking in the context of community, personally I was sick, realizing how little this man who was paid to watch out for us knew about me or my sisters, how little the specifics and intricacies of my stupid life would mean to him in this context, how anything I might tell him about myself or my experiences would only serve to plug into something from a workshop, what he thought he had carefully learned, as opposed to the fullness of one stupid breathing weird human in front of him, with her own unique sets of shittinesses and talents and needs.
“Check it out!!” Sara said one night at a party at our place (we had a lot of parties). “I got you gay dancing sailor underwear!”
Yeah she did.
“Light, medium, or strong?”
“Strong.” She was such a tiny girl.
I don’t know if I’ve really expressed myself clearly here. Eight years ago I was a sad mess crying out to be a girl but nobody knew how to deal with that. And then another fucked-up mess of a girl didn’t try to talk about it (even if she wanted to, she couldn’t have) and instead did stuff like give me gay dancing sailor panties. I will remember her more than many other people. She was just really fucking kind to me in the most unassuming and beautiful way. I miss her. I miss people like that.
A horned witch, 18th century