Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Yes Yes Y'all: XS Menswear

I'm about ready to smack myself in the forehead. It never occured to me to look into clothing resources for FTMs in my quest for smaller men's sizes in clothing. I came across Hudson's Guide by accident. I'll keep an eye out for others. Happy fitting!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Wardrobe Yearning: The Double-Breasted Cardigan

More anguish. Always more anguish. This time, I want a sweater (I mean, I always want a sweater but this one in particular). 

Express's Double-Breasted Military Cardigan

I went home to Lafayette (within the Little France region of Louisiana) for Christmas and got to relish in my relatives' company. My favorite part of going home for the holidays is seeing my family get together and being reminded of how oversized we are. I boast almost 30 aunts and uncles, and give/take 50 first-cousins. Seeing them congregate makes me warm and fuzzy inside. Two cousins in particular got me coveting: one wore a double-breasted sweater, the other a wool(!) marching band inspired jacket (it's supposedly military inspired but I don't see it). They were both purchased from Express. Express never impresses me. Never. Their menswear borders on uniforms and their womenswear looks uncomfortable. But now, I must admit, their sweaters and outerwear are singing a little song to me this season. In particular, I want a double-breasted cardigan (with a shawl collar). A girl can and will dream...

DIESEL's 'K-Jack' Double Breasted Cardigan

Trans Thailand

 Some Girls, by Aaron Joel Santos, straddles the line between fantasy and reality and aims to explore the lifestyles of the transgendered community in Thailand, from the daily lives of young women in Bangkok to the sex workers and cabaret stars of Pattaya and beyond.

In the real world, some girls are born boys. The dream is to escape or transcend that body. To flourish and transform into a beautiful and more feminine being. Oftentimes these worlds merge in wonderful and weird ways. Life becomes a stage where the myths and stereotypes of gender are all played out.

Some Girls is a work in progress and as such is constantly growing and transforming, much like the subjects it depicts.

The Next Gender Nation

Documenting the experiences of trans and gender variant youth in the Los Angeles Unified School District, The Next Gender Nation is part of a curriculum for teachers on gender and how gender variance effects students in and out of the classroom.

Guerilla (Queer) Barfare

Guerilla Queer Bar is an activist group who is all about LGBTQ visibility. And if you want to get me excited, start talking about getting a bunch of gays together and going out on the town! That's what GQB is all about and as of last summer, they've started one in Atlanta. The (age-old) idea is we queer folk designate a straight bar and show up unannounced. We then have ourselves a friendly, gay ole time, with a little activism to top it off. Their facebook page seems inactive. I hope they haven't fizzled out...

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Little Pep Talk

This is what I really needed right now. Maybe you need it, too. So, I'm sharing with you. Because sharing is caring. 

My Favorite Swede Named Swede of the Year

Courtesy of a friend: 
David Landes/The Local

Swedish pop star Robyn has been named Swede Of The Year by Fokus magazine for reaching "the highest levels of popular music without being shallow."

 "I do things that are important to me, and if that in turn can inspire other people that’s marvellous. It is something nice and something that makes me glad," Robyn, whose given name is Robin Carlsson, told Fokus.

In picking the 31-year-old singer-songwriter, the magazine cited her ability to reach the top of the showbiz world without selling out.

"In her ways and with her conscious artistry she has proven that it is possible to reach the highest levels of popular music without being shallow," Fokus said in its citation.

The magazine also praised Robyn's enterprising efforts to maintain control over her career.

"By releasing her records on her own label, she demonstrates great entrepreneurship, which also enables her to have complete control over her creative process. In all her characteristics, she is a role model to both young girls and boys as well as to men and women," the magazine wrote.

The Stockholm-born artist is finishing up a landmark year in her career, having released three albums known as the Body Talk series.

The first single, Dancing on My Own, released in June, went to number one in Sweden, marking the first time one of her singles made it to the top of the Swedish charts.

Fokus editor-in-chief Martin Ahlquist explained that the six-person jury who selected Robyn was at first sceptical about naming a pop star as Swede Of The Year.

"But the more we talked about it, the more it became obvious that she fulfilled the primary criteria for the reward, which includes doing something extraordinary and changing society for the better," Ahlquist told The Local.

When asked how a pop star can change society for the better, Ahlquist highlighted Robyn's "sound principles."

"She stands for something that comes from insider herself and without a political message," he said.

"It's something more powerful, the idea of independence and that being who you are is sufficient. In that way, she is a fantastic role who can have a positive impact on people's lives."

At several points in her career, Robyn could have chosen the easy road to success, but decided not to take any short cuts, Ahlquist explained.

As a result, she has maintained control over her music and the creative process and shown that it’s possible to achieve worldwide fame on one's own terms.

"She is a person with unparalleled integrity that is an inspiration to everyone who feels they may be trapped by the boundaries or stereotypes of others," said Ahlquist.

"Robyn proves we don’t have to follow along with what other people expect for us, but that we can achieve things the way we want to."

Don't Forget!

PUT THIS ON THE MAP is still raising funds to tour the country and start reteaching gender and sexuality. Teenagers speaking to their peers about empowering themselves will do more for our youth than the "It Gets Better" Project could ever hope for (though I do support "It Gets Better" and its mission). So if you have a dollar to spare, please send it their way!

Fed up with a lack of queer visibility, twenty-six young people in Seattle’s eastside suburbs weave together this ground-breaking narrative of shifting identities and social change. PUT THIS ON THE {MAP} is the compelling documentary about a generation of young people reteaching gender and sexual identity. From getting beat-up in a schoolyard to being picked up as a runaway, youth profess expertise in an honest evaluation of their schools and families. An interview based documentary where the realities of social isolation and violence are woven together with optimistic portraits of fearlessness and liberation. In an open and honest exploration of education, family, and community, PUT THIS ON THE MAP moves an audience from self-reflection to action.

PUT THIS ON THE {MAP} is decisively instructive for improving schools and communities for queer/transgender young people.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Precious [*****]

Paula Patton as Ms.Rain

I was late seeing Precious. I know a lot of people who couldn't get through it. It is hard on the emotions. Personally, I'm glad I got through it. Precious was somewhat of a gay movie, and after seeing it the first time, I watched it at least once a week, every week, for the entirety of last summer in my homegirl's basement. It's a favorite; one of those favorites I never think of when someone asks me what my favorite movies are. Last summer was definitely peppered with fantasies about Ms. Rain and Jermaine. Between Paula Patton and Amina Robinson, I had not a damn clue what to do with myself. It's a DVD worth paying for, most definitely.

Amina Robinson played the part of Jermaine

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Long Island Lesbian Engineer Wins Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

by Michelle Garcia

A Long Island Rail Road locomotive engineer was awarded $480,000 Friday after a federal jury decided she was wrongfully accused of and arrested for fondling a coworker's breast, New York's Daily News reports.

Engineer Melissa Stampf tapped Angela Trigg's shoulder as a greeting in July 2006, but Trigg accused her of touching one of her breasts. Stampf, 43, was then arrested, but the Manhattan district attorney declined to prosecute.

Stampf sued the railroad and Trigg in Brooklyn federal court, claiming she was treated differently than white males implicated in similar incidents because of her race (she is believed to be the only Asian female locomotive engineer), gender, and sexual orientation — she is a lesbian.

To All My Gays #6

The National Gay/Lesbian/Bi/Trans Suicide Hotline:  

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

These are women's shoes.

And that makes me (very) happy. Thank you, Pointer. Now, if only I could afford you...

I particularly appreciate the integrity of the interior of these shoes. And by integrity, I mean they're meant to be seen. Here, stalk them with me!

Just Because

I can't find a source for this portrait. But, when I saw it, I had to share it. What a great photo.

Chanel Kennebrew

is really cool. She's the creative force behind Junkprints. And when I say creative force... I mean she is Junkprints. Illustrator, art director, designer. Can we say, "friend crush"? Yes, we can. And yes, I have one on her. 

She's collaborated with the likes of MTV, Macy's, Urbanology Magazine and Clutch Magazine. Her work is wonderfully colored (in every sense of the word). And...

Fuzzy Pussy Illustration


Zanele Muholi: A Visual History of Black Lesbians in post-Apartheid South Africa

Today, I ran across a post by theGAQ about Zanele Muholi, a South African lesbian artist. I haven't heard of her before but she definitely reminds me of an artist I first stumbled upon in Juxtapoz, Kehinde Wiley (and as GAQ points out as well). Wiley uses the old master painting style to paint portraits of black men. In "Faces and Phases," Muholi photographs black lesbians in black and white, which sometimes brings to mind early photography.

"In Faces and Phases, I continue to document and explore black lesbian identities through portraiture, where the participants are photographed in their various domiciles. One of our collective painful experiences as a community is the loss of friends and acquaintances through disease or hate crimes. Some of these participated in my visual projects. What is left behind now is the individuals' portraits that works as a site of memory for us, as a trace of 'who and what existed' in a particular space at this particular moment when our black lesbian and South African histories intersect."

You can read her artist's statement here.

Creepy South African Ad

Courtesy of copyranter:

Campaign, via South African alcohol company Brandhouse, is for some initiative called Drive Dry (Firefox and Safari both say the website in the ad is suspicious.) There are white men in the campaign, but only in less scary "They" group shots; these two ads are the lead executions. Ad agency: FoxP2, Capetown. Click images to enlarge.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Australia's First Openly Lesbian Senator Finally Stepping Up

Senator Penny Wong, Australia's first openly lesbian and Asia-born cabinet member, today backed a motion passed at the ALP conference in South Australia for a federal policy change in favour of gay marriage. The openly gay senator from South Australia seconded an amended motion by the Florey sub-branch at today's conference. In doing so, she broke her silence over the national debate on equal marriage rights with a deeply personal speech about the need for the Labor Party to respect the principles of equality. [...]

Senator Wong, a Left factional ally of the Prime Minister, shifted her public position by announcing she would advocate at national conference for a policy change "to support equality including in relation to marriage for same sex couples."

"Like many in this room, I do know what it is like to be a subject of prejudice," Senator Wong said, noting she joined the ALP because it stood for equality and had historically worked against discrimination. "There has been some commentary which has confused my position of not commenting publicly on this issue with my position on the actual issue itself. I have been privileged and honoured, not only of being a member of our party, but an elected member of the federal parliament and of the federal Labor cabinet. I have had the opportunity to advocate for equality at the highest levels of our party and within our party processes, as I do today. And I will do so again at the next national conference. Talking about change is not the same as delivering it," Senator Wong said. "This state was the first state in this nation to decriminalise homosexuality, why should we now resile from expressing our views, our support for the principles of equality here today?"

Monday, December 6, 2010

UO Getting Cray

Urban Outfitters used to be that place with a satisfactory selection in womenswear, covetable menswear, groovy apartment amenities and funny, sometimes inappropriate books. Now, Urban Outfitters is starting to look like Hipster Depot. They sell, in addition to the things mentioned above, bikes and vintage clothing and hair care and skin care and beauty products and... Was I asleep or did this all happen more or less fairly recently? The downside is that Urban Outfitters is losing focus. The last thing they want to be is a depot. If you're too big, it's hard to make everything great, because there's that whole you're-not-specialized-anymore thing. Complaints aside, on my most recent visit, UO was on point in the shoe, scarf and sweater departments. But then again, so are a lot of stores right now. (It seems Native textiles are in this season... I don't know how I feel about that.) But if there was anything that took my breath away it was this bag:


And magically, I'm into rucksacks. The bag is made by The Brothers Bray and Co., a UO+Billykirk collaboration. And let me tell you... all I want to do now is craft leather.

Friday, December 3, 2010

I AM: Trans People Speak

I AM: Trans People Speak is a multi-media campaign aimed at raising awareness about diverse communities of trans individuals, families and allies. Check them out! They even provide Trans 101 for those who want to educate themselves. This is Tre'Andre's I AM video:

GOP Santa

Adam Zyglis is the staff cartoonist for The Buffalo News.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nicki Minaj: Tellin It Like It Is

Nicki Minaj will not drink pickle juice... This woman is hard not to love. She's weird but approachable, outspoken and does not abuse the power she has. Or rather, she doesn't waste the power she has. We've all heard this shit before: men get applauded for doing things that if women were to do, we'd be labled bitches or whores or both. And Nicki has recently taken a moment to say it, too. Word. She almost apologized at the end. I'm glad she didn't.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

That's What She Said [****]

Oh, the lesbian webseries! The easiest window into media within your own community. If it weren't for the LNF Show (now in its fourth season), I would not have heard the likes of Khaos Da Rapper or Charmain Johnson. And now a new series has hit the ground running in 2010. Pearl Girls Productions brings us its first major production, a new webseries with an all Asian-American cast. Groovy. Quirky. A bit awkward, but absolutely endearing. That's What She Said is about a midwestern lez named Nicole "Nic" Tran who relocates to L.A. after being caught kissing her best friend and shunned by her family. In L.A. she meets a diverse group of friends (Rae-Anne "Rae" Constantino, Babette "Baby" Liu, Leslie Park, and Shin Tanaka), gets thrown into the gay scene there and (you know) drama ensues. So far there are 13 webisodes averaging about 5 minutes each. What I like most about this series is that it boasts women from various ethnic backgrounds, including those from southeast Asia. While she waits for more episodes, Lady gives That's What She Said 4 stars out of 5.