Thursday, November 21, 2013

The "WhatsIt" Blues

I love the Blues

Y'know, the form of music. 

People either Love the Blues or hate them.  Usually not too much in between.  Some people pretend to like them, but never really listened.

Queen Bee and the Blue Hornet band. 

It's all about your own experiences.  I think most TGs can really relate to the Blues- the Pain, the Emotion...

Anyway, The Blues.  I'll get back to this.

Albert Collins with George Thorogood.  Live Aid, 1985

Last Saturday, November 16, 2013, I went out for my usual third weekend activities: Renaissance and Angela's Laptop Lounge. 

I know... "Why, Sophie, Why?  Why are you discussing this yet again?"

Well, read on!

Seriously.  No, don't click away to that site full of Kitten pictures...

 Anyway, I needed some fun times.  It was the two month anniversary of Lisa's death.

I'm beginning to find my feet again after the One-Two punch of late August through September.  Thanks to everyone whose kind words and actions through these dark times are responsible for me being... well, Alive. 

In any case, I wanted to have a day of just Fun.  So, to relax, I went up to True Colors to have Amanda Richards do my makeup.  That's always a lot of fun and very relaxing.  I had a great time there as usual, and Amanda worked wonders.

Relaxed and Happy

I wore one of the dresses I inherited from Lisa.  It is a lot more colorful than my usual, but it was fun to wear!  Also I loved the way the top was cut to accentuate my breasts. 

Too Much?

So, I was ready for the Night.  I quickly stopped back at the house to drop off some things and pick up something I'd forgotten.  Then... dinner.  But where?  Hmmm

I decided to go to Shangrila, but I needed money first, so I stopped at a Wawa to use the ATM.  A twenty-something guy held the door for me, smiling... I think he clocked me.  I didn't care.  Shoulders back, chest out, walk with confidence like the Woman I am! 

I sat at the bar and had a nice dinner.  A guy I knew came in, and we shared a drink.  It was a fun, mellow time.  Then it was off to Renaissance!

This month's meeting was a "Swap Meet."  The idea was to bring old stuff to sell or give away.  I forgot to bring anything.  Oops!  But others did, so that was good.  And as a bonus, Maureen was there.  Remember her? Her first time out was the weekend before at the Raven.  And now she was attending her first Support Meeting!  Tammy was also there, who I'd met the month before this. 

The meeting went well.  We had a moment of Silence to commemorate the upcoming Transgender Day of Remembrance.  I said a silent prayer.

After the meeting, it was off to Laptop Lounge.  This time it was held in a new venue:  Baxter's.  I knew the place well, as I used to go there quite a bit in drab.  It's in a strip mall, has great wings, ok everything else, but a nice dark wood bar. 

And they do Live Music... which no one expected that night, especially Angela.  There was a Blues Band there...  Russ Lambert and his Shakedancer Band.

Russ Lambert and the Shakedancer band

It turns out I'd met Russ Lambert at one of my drab jobs.  He was bragging about his band and how great he was at the blues harp.  I was like "yeah right."  But I walked into Baxter's and there he was, playing up a storm!  And DAMN he was great!

There were maybe fifteen people in the bar, mostly in their fifties, watching the show. 

Many of them turned to watch as, one by one, Transwomen entered the bar and walked past the band toward the back, where the room Angela reserved waited.  I bought a drink and watched the band, and my hips started gyrating.  In drab, I never danced.  My dancing embarrassed me.  But as a Woman... well let's just say I'm less inhibited.  I love swinging and rolling my hips as I lose myself in music.

Photographer took an unflattering pic of me dancing  ;)
Pic courtesy Angela's Laptop Lounge (modified to obscure a face)

And lose myself I did.  I was totally entranced by the song.  I'm sure I made an ass of myself, and I didn't care.  When the song ended, I cheered, and Russ acknowledged myself and the other Tgirls who applauded.  He then kicked into another song. 

Dance!  Groove!  Oh I was in heaven!  Maybe about fifty Tgirls in the room at this point, most enjoying the band.

Song ended; the band readied for another, and Russ said "This one goes out to all the ladies and Whatsits out there!"  *sound of record being scratched as needle is yanked off*  And they started to play.  But none of the Tgirls were dancing.  Me included.  No, we were all glaring at him.  I seethed.  Congratulations, Jerk, you just pissed off two thirds of your audience!

The song ended, as did the set.  Angela went over to him as he put his microphone back in the stand.  She wanted to negotiate sharing the night- half an hour of dance music, half an hour for the band.  Russ agreed.  Then he turned to me.

I told him I loved his music, but I didn't appreciate the insult.  He looked puzzled.

"We're human beings, not 'Whatsits.'  And we were all loving the music until you insulted us.  Well done- you alienated most of the room!"

He looked horrified.  "Did I say that?" he said.  Both Angela and I nodded.

"I'm so so sorry.  How can.. I mean... really, I'm sorry..."

"Just apologize.  We're people.  That's all.  And we have feelings too."

And at the beginning of his next set, he DID apologize. 

At the end of the band's night, Russ came to the bar, where I was seated, and bought me a drink.  (I got a diet coke.)  We talked about music for a bit, then he went into the back room to socialize with our group.  I understand he stayed until closing and had a wonderful time.

Maybe I'm wrong, but THAT is the way to apologize.  He apologized publicly, admitted his ignorance, then worked to learn about us.  So Russ Lambert and the Shakedancer Band has a new rabid fan... and the Music never Stopped

So I had a WONDERFUL night.  I was comfortable in my skin, and saw so many wonderful friends, like Charlotte, Jade, Jane, Danielle, oh I could go on and on. 

I know a LOT about the Darkness, and one thing I know for sure is that it Thrives on isolation.  And I was allowing it to feed on me.  I'm trying to get out a bit more, even if it's just to walk around the mall or something.  Being out forces me to work on my walk, my mannerisms, my voice... Everything.  Seeing friends reminds me that I am NOT alone.  They remind me that maybe, just maybe, I am worthy of Oxygen and Occupying Space on this plane.

And that, dear reader, means a LOT!

At Baxter's (pic courtesy Angela's Laptop Lounge, cropped by me)


  1. I love that you're being you!! Expressive, fun, beautiful, and settling in with your womanhood! LOVE it! Look out Philly, you've got more fun coming your way!! <3

  2. Sophie:

    Sounds like a "welcome back" (to the land of the living) is in order. I can't in my wildest thoughts imagine that Lisa would want you or any of us to lose ourselves because of what "he" did to her. Your getting out and about, and being with friends is good. Better is that you're finding your center, so that when alone you're still able to accept and love yourself rather than going down the dark rabbit hole of despair.

    Girl, the world is your oyster. I have no earthly idea what that means, so I give it this meaning: set your own course, follow it, and enjoy the journey.

    [note to self: gotta get up to the Laptop Lounge someday.]

    Kindest regards,

  3. The music should never stop, I love that song. What's crazy is that he had no idea he offended. I've only recently started differentiating the people who call you these types of pronouns out of ignorance as opposed to those being hurtful. The public has much to learn...