Monday, August 11, 2008

Straight Girl From The 'Burbs, Or, Can't Sleep, Clown-Boy Will Eat Me

From time to time, 'issues' that I think I have 'dealt with' come back and torment me. From time to time, I realise that I am not quite as down and cool and funky and comfortable with everything that I am and do as I think I am. From time to time it is brought home to me, usually in some sort of panicked or drunken (or both) moment of clarity, that so much of what I live out is actually REALLY HARD. That it actually requires a lot of bloodymindedness and effort just to live the teensiest bit outside the square. It is not easy being queer, not even when you mostly hide out and hang out in the ghettos and stay within communities and circles of other queer and sympathetic folk. It is not easy being some gender other than female or male, not even when mixing with a gaggle of trannies and frequently venues with unisex toileting arrangements.

Was at an event on Saturday night, and someone (admittedly a very silly gayboy) said that he thought I was a lesbian and my monster was a dyke. We were both in suits and ties, though I was the only one with glitter eyeshadow and lipstick. I freaked out about this casual observation, a lot. My processing of this comment was not helped by the many, many beers I had consumed at this point, but still- IT WAS HORRIBLE. Like staring straight into the abyss, the whole world turned black, I was somehow shaken to the very core of my identity, I had a total breakdown about the way I am perceived and the realisation that probably a very large amount of people read me as the L-word. For all I self-identify as a bear and a faggot and whatever else, a big chunk of the world think of me as a femme in a suit, a lady-loving-lady, a GIRLY LEZZO who is probably submissive to HER butch dyke lover. Good f*&^king grief. Could this possibly be true? And why do I still care?

Deep breath, deep breath, deep breath. I knew all of this of course, just found it hard to be confronted with it quite so blatantly. I don't know whether to be amazed at how much it hurt, or to be amazed that I am at all amazed at how much it hurt?

On the upside, there was a small child there who was apparently quite scared of me, aka The Clown-Boy. Out of the mouths of babes indeed...

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Blogger Urban (r)Evolutionary said...

you do NOT look like a lesbian.
nope, you don't.

as for your freak out.. I understand it. The girl and I grapple with our 'appearance of heterosexuality'. I think we always will, it just is the way it is when one's queerness is so central to one's being..

2:33 pm  
Blogger nixwilliams said...

yeah, that's a fucking hard thing. when you're surrounded by people who are great and understand somewhat and have a clue it can feel completely like you've worked it all out. but yeah - sometimes you find yourself surrounded by people who not only don't get it but don't seem capable of making the effort to get it, and ARGH. sometimes it's not as easy as ignoring what other people think, because what they think and say has a real effect on how you feel comfortable expressing yourself and your identity.


1:07 pm  
Blogger Zoo said...

big hugs back to both of you! its somewhat unsettling to realise that my sense of self, that i have very consciously worked hard on for many years now, is THAT shaky...

but what to do? just keep on keeping on i guess, and be grateful for the people in my life who do get it!

1:09 pm  

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