My first real experience with transsexuality happened in late 1999. I flew up to Boston to visit G & E, a couple I knew in college (said trip was also the impetus for the name of this journal, but that's another story) and one evening, both G & E approached with perhaps the four most dreaded words in our language: “We have to talk.”
The “talk,” as it turned out, was G coming out to me as a transsexual. At the time, G had just started undergoing hormone treatment and counseling so G still looked pretty much like I always knew G, so it was a bit of a shock to find a friend of mine who've I known for (at that time) seven years was no longer a “he” but a “she.”
At the end of the revelation, G asked if I had any questions.
I thought for a few moments. I've always been a “live and let live” type of guy and as long as what you do doesn't hurt anyone and everyone involved is of legal age and consents, so be it. If G feels better as a woman than a man, okay. I didn't feel it was my place to ask why, and having just started, the when was still a ways off. Their Bostonian friends were cool with this. In the end, I asked the only question that I felt I could ask: “So, are you changing your name?” (answer: no. G kept her birth name; and I still sometimes think of G as “he”—old habits die hard. Katelynn I have always thought of as a “she” but it was easier since I've only known her as a “she”)
I also thought, Cool! Two women who are legally married!
Show numero dos and today's episode is “The Baya & Chet Show, starring JD.”
Let's see … we have Baya nervous about an audition for a hiphop dance troop, dance at the audition, leave disappointed and yet, when she finds out she made the cut—turns it down. During the audition it was clear that she wasn't quite ready for what it takes for hiphop dancing (Bunny remarked that Baya was in “the real world” only afterwards did she realize that Baya hit the real world on “The Real World”—it was cute). JD later introduces her to a well known dance instructor he knows so she can continue to become the dancer she wants to become.
And Chet. In private correspondance, Katelynn assured me that yes, Chet is indeed straight. Despite the tight purple clothes and eyeliner, he's all man. I'm just going to have to accept that, since Katelynn knows him more than I do, but he just pegs my gaydar.
Anyway, his Mom and three or four sisters (lost count) all show up to visit him. His Mom is supportive of him, loves JD (and asks him to watch out for her son) but hates the eyeliner. As Bunny said: “Look at all the women he grew up with—no wonder he's the way he is!”
JD is quite racist when drunk, which Chet didn't care for. JD may also be a mean drunk, but fortunately things didn't get that bad. Yet. We'll see.
Ryan is still coming across as a complete jerk, first by pranking JD, then getting very upset when kissed on the lips by a transvestite at a gay bar (what was he expecting?). He's not coming across as very likeable.
There wasn't much about Katelynn this week. She, Sarah and Baya attended an African Dance class and well … Katelynn wasn't very graceful (sorry Katelynn, but Bunny observed that the way men's shoulders are developed it's very hard to perform a particular arm movement used in that type of dancing). Katelynn said as much, so it's not like I'm saying anything she doesn't know already.
Not much characterization for the rest of the cast, but I'm sure their time will come soon enough.