Dancing in the Shadows
I cycled in to the office, and went to chat to the other volunteers. Having cycled, I was a bit sweaty in shorts and vest, and had taken off my pink helmet. As I went to change into a more suitable top and skirt, Les came to talk to me about it. There had been complaints.
Les skirted around the dodgy ground- “Is it becoz I is Trans?” and said the objection was to me appearing without my wig. I could have pressed it- would there be any objection to my appearing without a wig, if I were not trans? S takes great care to make her thin hair appear to best advantage- do you think she should cover her head? And- I did not. So if I cycle in and want the sweat to evaporate a bit before changing, I must hide away in the other room. But he said, “It is as if you want to shock. Do you?”
I have been asked this before, by an Episcopalian priest who was on the Community Building in Britain Facilitator Training Group, around the time I joined it. I joined the FTG only just before I decided I would transition, so first attended dressed male. It was appearing female that shocked the priest. Do I want to shock? Well, yes. Or, if this shocks you then I want to shock you; or if the choice is appearing male or shocking you, then I want to shock you.
And Philip, also on the FTG, commented that I seemed to be seeking to blend in, in the most eye-catching way possible. I was in drab colours; not dressed fashionably, because I did not have the eye for it; and not sexily, because I wanted to get away from the transvestite stereotype, the ugly, beefy bloke in a mini, tight top, and huge falsies- but I was dressed dramatically.
I want to hide away, and not attract attention, and I want to be on stage, the centre of attention. The hiding comes from past hurts. I have wondered if the dancing does too, an attempt to placate others, to be accepted because I entertain- no, it is what I want for itself. It is just so exciting.
I have been cavalier about going wigless, in part because I think I get read anyway: but as John thought me normal female until he saw me wigless, perhaps I should keep it on. I commented on the new hairstyle of the woman on the checkout. She changes it often, she told me. So I lifted my wig an inch, grinned at her, and said so do I. Yes, I do like to shock, provoke, destabilise, challenge. I like to take a contrarian view in argument. And, I am hiding away.