Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Feminine Differential - Shoes Transform

Christian Louboutin Shoes are iconic.  They have a beautiful sexual design that is ultra feminine and the red-lacquered soles that have become his signature

Louboutin helped bring stilettos back into fashion in the 1990s and 2000s, designing dozens of styles with heel heights of 120 mm (4.72 inches) and higher. The designer's professed goal has been to "make a woman look sexy, beautiful, to make her legs look as long as he can". While he does offer some lower-heeled styles, Louboutin is generally associated with his dressier evening-wear designs incorporating jeweled straps, bows, feathers, patent leather, red soles, and other similar decorative touches. He is most popularly known for the red leather soles on his high heel shoes, commonly referred to as "sammy red-bottoms" Christian Louboutin's red-bottom color code is Pantone 18-1663 TPX.  (Source Wikipedia) 

2001 - Rhonda Shopping on Worth Avenue 
When I first started buying heels that were of good quality, I was drawn to the beautiful Worth Avenue Charles Jourdan shoe boutique.  Outrageously priced they were beautiful and had incredible style. Unknown to the world, this is where Mr. Louboutin got his start.   

Fascinated by world cultures, he ran away in his teens to Egypt and spent a year in India. Louboutin returned to Paris in 1981, where he assembled a portfolio of drawings of elaborate high heels. He brought it to the top couture houses. The effort resulted in employment with Charles Jourdan. Subsequently, Louboutin met Roger Vivier, who claims to have invented the stiletto, or spiked-heel shoe. Louboutin became an apprentice in Vivier's atelier.

The only way I could justify these shoes was when they went on sale. I became friends with the shop managers and she would call when they would go on sale. The shoes by design had a unique toe box that fit by foot beautifully. This red pump I still have - Vintage '80s. Thank you Carol for treating a fledgling shoe lover so kindly.  

The 2001 photo above is in front of the Worth Avenue Charles Jourdan boutique store and I am wearing Charles Jourdan Shoes.  Just know that if you see the Charles Jourdan label today it is not the same French company, designer, or quality.  

For a shoe fix visit CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN 

Monday, January 30, 2017

A New Normal - Standing Out and Blending In

Bru's Room Grill - 9 locations 
Joanna Santos at the “Musings from my everyday life” blog  wrote a wonderful article last week about her new normal and blending in. So many times, we wait for a response when we are out and most of time notice nothing. My comfort level has increase over the years and in almost all cases, I go about my day not really noticing or expecting a reaction. It has been a long time since anyone noticed.  

Comfort zones are essential and expanding that zone is equally important. Last week I found myself in a bit of a challenging situation not of my making. A circumstance that would likely make any woman apprehensive.  

I have a business associate that is an attorney. His specialty is business relationships and securing venture capital for startup companies. He is a good friend and we met when I did work for a power generation startup. On several occasion he used my engineering background to review prospective projects as to technical viability. This past week he had such a request and asked if I could accompany him to see a water reclamation prototype. We were to meet for breakfast and then view the project.

Surprise one: There were three at the table when I arrived for breakfast-all men, two I had never met. We had time to kill and our conversation went in many directions. The breakfast within itself would have made for a super day.  

Surprise two: There was to be a lunch before going to the site and I was told there would be a few more joining us. We met at a large sports restaurant and the few more, was twenty. And, one of the group was the restaurant owner, a retired NFL superstar. Immediately on arrival there was jockeying as who was going to sit with the “only lady” - I was placed in the middle. Everyone was kind and treated me beautifully. Best case scenario. 

There was a lot of business talk and even some discreet flirting from the person that had engineered my sitting next to him - A very cute British accent. What is one to do but smile, laugh and play the part? 

Surprise three: So as the Brits would say "In for a penny in for a pound." After about an almost two hour lunch most all of the group finally headed out to the prototype site. It was an interesting full size prototype and I will not bore you with the details other than to say that I held my own during the tour and asked relevant questions. I had done a whole day’s research prior and was better prepared than most in the group. 

I must admit that being the only “woman” in this large group of high-end investment entrepreneurs was a little unnerving. "Oh my - suppose I say something really stupid?"

In the end, several good business contacts came out of the meetings and time will tell if any business develops. The next day I wrote my own evaluation paper on the project and delivered it to my attorney friend.  Mission/project accomplished.  

I described my day to a fiend and this was his comment:
It's clear that you're proud of  the way you were treated - as a knowledgeable woman. This was not 'Rhonda, the secretary on view yesterday to the men assembled there, but rather Rhonda, the consultant / adviser, who happens to be a very sharp business-woman. Just further validation. 
The whole day was perfect day of standing out and blending - A new normal established.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Sunday Funnies - The Little Golden Book

Source: Tim O’Brien’s ‘The Little Golden Book of Alternate Facts,’ via Facebook

Lies Are No Longer Lies. They're 'Alternative Facts.'



Next week in am In Chicago Tuesday-Thursday

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Friday, January 27, 2017

Friend's Friday Guest Post - "I Bet You Have a Question?"

By Katy

My coming out is a story by itself and I promise to write it up when I have more time.  For now, I want to tell you about The Second Big Event in my early transgender life…going to my first out of town gathering: Beauty and the Beach which was Joann Roberts’ (RIP) private party in Rehoboth, typically held in early November. 

Rehoboth is very quiet at that time of the year.  The big crowds are gone.  But there is plenty of mild weather and most of the good restaurants are open, so there is plenty to do.  I checked into the convention hotel only to learn that as the “New Girl” my room was at the other end of the hotel and I would be expected to hike a little bit to get to our events.  The walking wasn’t a problem but I was a little scared when I learned that there were 120 women in the ballroom at a “quilting convention” and I would have to walk past their entryway each day.   They were there for the entire week, just like me.  I was hoping I could just slip by them without incident.  I was wrong.

The very first time I walked past the ballroom the doors were propped open and at least 20 women looked at me…agape…as I wobbled by, impeccably over-dressed and somewhat typical, I’m afraid, of the new, unseasoned cross-dresser.  Two more “passings” ensued and each time there seemed to be more eyes on me as I walked by.  It was right then and there that I learned to walk and smile at the same time!  On the third trip, one of the women waved to me and I made a spur of the moment decision to simply walk into their space, smiling at them as most of them smiled back at me.  “I’ll bet you have a question?" I began.  “We do, we do,’ a few of them seemed to speak at the same time.  We all laughed and then I went on to explain who we were, and that we come to Rehoboth each year, just looking for the chance to be our feminine selves.  They were very kind and I hoped that I had made a few new friends.

The next night was our “formal night” and I had the chance to wear a true cocktail dress to the cocktail event.  As I walked by the ballroom the women noticed that I was all dressed up and two of them called out, “Katy!  Come in!  We want to see your dress!”  I was stunned.  No one ever asked me to “see my dress” and it just struck me that had I grown up as maybe I should have, this would have happened to be when I was 13 or 14, not 51.  “Come in and show us your dress!” they called again.  I was stopped in my tracks, not really knowing what to do, but I turned and went into the main ballroom and somehow, nature took over and I just held the edge of my skirt with one hand and I twirled around so they could all see my dress.  They all approved and were very sweet with their comments.  I left there with a sense of confidence that is with me to this day.  These strangers just saw the real me and they seemed to like and approve of what they saw.  Nothing could have meant more to me at that moment.  Nothing. It was my first “twirl” and it really meant something to me.

Epilog:  One of my girlfriends came up with the idea that we should have a “Pajama Party” on our final night.  We all agreed, thinking that almost all of us had missed that kind of event when we were teenagers.  So one gal brought a 45 RPM record player and records, another brought chips and pretzels and someone else brought Coke and Pepsi.  I found an old wig and I put it up in curlers and I wore fuzzy PJ’s and fuzzy matching slippers.  Earlier that day I stopped in the ballroom and invited the Quilters.  Mostly, they laughed, but one or two seemed interested.

When the night came and we gathered in the lounge for our Pajama Party I was delighted to find that three or four of the Quilters came in to join us.  They were all married, some with grown children, but they sat cross-legged on the floor like the rest of us and listened to the music.  Linda, who was one of their leaders, said, “you know, all week we watched you guys truly enjoying yourselves as women, and seeing you reminded many of us just how much fun it was to be a girl.  We’ve kind of let husbands, children and careers, get in the way of that fun, but you’ve reminded us of the fun we all had growing up.  Thank you so much!”

I was stunned.  We hugged, tears rolling down our cheeks.

The next year, Joann was forced to change the date of our meeting to one week later in the year.  When the Quilters learned we had changed our dates they changed their dates to coincide with ours.  Only lately have I realized how much we have learned from each other.  All it took was a smile and a “I bet you have a question…”


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Chamber Music Concert - Continued

I attended my second 2017 Flagler Museum Chamber music concert this past Tuesday evening. The concert featured the Telegraph Quartet.  Here is a brief overview of the group: 
The Telegraph Quartet
The Telegraph Quartet was formed in 2013 with a passionate commitment to the standard chamber music repertoire as well as contemporary and non-standard repertoire alike. The Telegraph Quartet won the prestigious Grand Prize in the 2014 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition and has gone on to perform in concert halls, music festivals, and academic institutions in the United States, Germany, Italy and France.

The Telegraph Quartet was greatly honored by being the only American quartet of the fifteen invited from around the world to perform in Paris in a showcase for young quartets at the 2016 Biennale de quatuors à cordes (Biennial String Quartet Festival and Symposium).

The Telegraph Quartet is based in the San Francisco area, and members of the Quartet hold teaching positions at various music institutions including San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s Chamber Music Program and Young Chamber Musicians in San Francisco’s South Bay
1999 Rhonda's First Concert
Flagler Museum

I have been attending these concerts for over 18 years. Attending the first concert in 1999, I remember being so scared.  I arrives just as it was starting and sat far back in the last row. After the last note, I ran out as fast as my heels would allow - Skipping the reception and champagne. My biggest fear was the event photographer. To my surprise in the next year's museum events catalog, there I was, sitting in the back.  

As years progressed, I finally found enough courage to at least walk into the reception area. My biggest fear still was the event photographer. That is why the photo here is so special.   

At this evening's concert I was presented with a photo from the previous concert taken by the event photographer. I really like it. At many events, photos are take - yet never seen. I want to thank the Museum for sharing this beautiful photo. 

I am so happy I escaped my fear.  What about you?  Share your escape.  

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Rebecca Riots

Rebecca Riots in Wales. Men and boys, many dressed as women, attacking a turnpike gate in protest at charges at tollgates on public roads. Another of their main targets was union workhouses. From 'The Illustrated London News' (London, 11 February 1843).

Genesis 24:59-61, New American Standard Bible

59 Thus they sent away their sister Rebekah and her nurse with Abraham's servant and his men. 60 They blessed Rebekah and said to her, "May you, our sister, Become thousands of ten thousands, And may your descendants possess The gate of those who hate them." 61 Then Rebekah arose with her maids, and they mounted the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and departed.…

What on earth could these verses have to do with cross dressing. An interesting piece of history. Source Wikipedia (Paraphrased)  

The Rebecca Riots took place between 1839 and 1843 in South and Mid Wales. They were a series of protests undertaken by local farmers and agricultural workers in response to perceived unfair taxation. The rioters, often men dressed as women, took their actions against toll-gates, as they were tangible representations of high taxes and tolls. The riots ceased prior to 1844 due to several factors, including increased troop levels, a desire by the protesters to avoid violence and the appearance of criminal groups using the guise of Rebecca for their own purposes. In 1844 a Parliamentary act to consolidate and amend the laws relating to turnpike trusts in Wales was passed. Answering the protesters demands.  

Although these early 'uprisings' were few and uncommon, they were the first appearance of mobs dressed in disguises. But why Rebecca? These gangs became known as Merched Beca (Welsh for "Rebecca's Daughters") or merely the Rebeccas. The origin of their name is said to be a verse in the Bible, Genesis 24:60.  This verses would be s shouted many times from the religious men of the area.

Prior to destroying the toll gates, "Rebecca" (the protest leader) would call to his followers who were also dressed as women and perform a scene which involved this chant.  
Rebecca: "Wait! It feels like a big gate put across the road to stop your old mother.
Rioters: "We will break it down, mother. Nothing stands in your way."
This would then in turn lead to the destruction of the toll gates.

Just a little piece of history where men dressed as women.  

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Boots & Skirts

I love my new Pikolinos boots and have been playing around with looks that I think will work. I found an old Lauren Denim Skirt that still fits. A wonder within it self, after this holiday food fest. My skirt is very much like the one on the layout with a just a little more flair at the hem.  It is below the knee and just above the top of the boots.  It is the belt that makes the outfit with the two off-the-shoulder tops tucked in. 

I do have trips coming up to the frozen north next month and the skirt and sweater combination may be my traveling outfit. At least on those trips, with my new winter coat, I will not look like a complete dork while waiting for the car rental bus.       

I was looking for advice on how to wear boots and came across these good suggestions on The Stir blog.    

There aren't a lot of rules that go along with wearing boots with skirts or dresses. It's perfectly acceptable to mix and match lots of dress and skirt lengths with all boot heights. And that's good news cause you can't really mess this look up too badly.

Five basic guidelines:

  • Match your boot style with your dress/skirt style: This is sort of obvious but worth considering -- try to keep your dress or skirt in the same style range as your boots. In other words, don't wear thick chunky motorcycle boots with a party dress or elegant stiletto-heeled boots with a garden dress.
  • Skirt or dress length: When wearing tall knee-high boots, there should be a few inches of "leg peek" between the top of the boot and the hemline. Same goes for long skirts with mid-calf boots, etc. This is more flattering and less nun-like.
  • Bare legs or not: To go bare legged or not is really a preference. When you're going to work and/or it's cold outside, most women probably prefer to wear tights or leggings with their skirts and boots. However, when your day is casual and the weather is fair, make the choice that works best for you.
  • Have fun with colored or patterned tights. Playing around with tights in great colors or patterns can add a bit of texture or playfulness to your outfit. This is the only time of year you can strut around in tights, so you might as well go with it -- and you'll stay warmer, too!
  • Lighten up: We're about to show you some great examples of how to mix and match; however, take care not to drab yourself down with all-dark colors. A black dress atop black tights atop tall black boots is bleck! Too dreary. Lighten up your ensemble with a pale sweater, a colored coat, or tights in a rich color -- and don't be afraid to wear brown boots with black or gray.

What a beautiful put together look!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Women’s Rally - South FloridaWomen’s March on Palm Beach

People take part in the Women’s March on Palm Beach at the Meyer Amphitheater in West Palm Beach on Saturday afternoon,

What started as a Facebook protest, went viral.
   A worldwide movement.  

I attended the Woman's March in West Palm Beach Saturday.  When I arrived there were maybe 200 and I said, OK this is a statement. Within an hour the crowd had grown to an estimated group of at least 7,000. (Personally, I believe much more.) I have attended many events in this beautiful city-park / amphitheater by the water and this was by far, the largest group I have ever seen there. Many signs all speaking to President Trump. Some funny - some serious. All carrying the same theme. Don't mess with us.  

This has been a week of challenging political events culmination Friday in the inauguration. Saturday, for me, being in such a large and diverse group made me feel comforted. As a group, we speak with a strong voice. As a nation, we all speak loudly.  President Trump, are you listening?  Never underestimate us.  

“This is not a one-day event, we’re fighting for our lives,” one speaker said.

Here is how CNN reported the Washington event:

Streets in the monumental core of downtown Washington were brought to a standstill Saturday as droves of women marched to protest Donald Trump's presidency and his history of derogatory comments about women.

Protesters filled Pennsylvania Avenue, the same iconic street Trump walked down a day before during his inaugural parade, as they moved in the direction of the White House.

The large turnout wasn't limited to Washington. Similar protests unfolded throughout the day in cities such as New York, where crowds spilled across Fifth Avenue. Boston Police Chief William Cross said the crowd there was too big for the march route and could not proceed because "it would be like a snake eating its tail." In Los Angeles, some protesters eventually moved to streets parallel to the march so they could move and still feel like they were participating.

Women’s March on Palm Beach

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Sunday Funnies - 1/22

Source: serialthriller.com

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Sunday!


My up coming trips:

Chicago IL, Jan31 - February 2
Cornwall (Montreal),ON  - February 13-18
Brainerd, MN - February 19-21

Saturday, January 21, 2017

The 45th President

The unimaginable has happened—Donald Trump, fool, oaf, bully, and sociopathic liar has become the 45 President of the United States – POTUS.  I was shocked at the election returns of November 8 and had hopes that time would make my distrust wain.  It has not. I hoped that he would choose a cabinet that would be conciliatory. Instead, we has embraced billionaires, incompetents, Wall Street insiders, lobbyist and extremist. A far cry from what was promised.  

I am afraid he is going to roll back progress on many fronts. The environment, banking regulations, woman’s issues, health care, and GLBT acceptance. Do not forget we are the “T” in that equation.  

Although President Trump is a political unknown, we can derive insight from those in his orbit. 

Why should we be concerned? President Trump picked Pastor Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas, to deliver his pre-inauguration sermon. This is what Jeffress has said in the past about us. 

"Gender identity confusion is an emotional disorder, that should be treated… Gender identity confusion should not be exploited by social activists like those in the [President Barack] Obama administration who want to deny the God-given distinction between the sexes. This is a rebellion against God's plan," he added.

Former Indiana Governor Mike Pence, President Trump’s Vice President, attracted national attention in 2015 when he signed a religious freedom law that members of the LGBT community said could worsen discrimination. He only backed down when the economic pressure became enormous.  

Further, Pence writes, "Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior." Politifact had indicated this to mean Pence advocated spending on institutions providing conversion therapy, which is something LGBTQ advocates say is clear from the statement. 

On the 2000 campaign website Pence wrote: "Congress should oppose any effort to recognize homosexuals as a discreet and insular minority, entitled to the protection of anti-discrimination laws similar to those extended to women and ethnic minorities." 

Understand that normal is going to drift and shift in ways we are unaccustomed. Trump has normalized so many once-outrageous attitudes, from open racism to blatant lying.  In his inaugural speak he preached selfishness. President Trump's statement: "Going forward, It is going to be only America first." An policy modern America has never demonstrated to the rest of the world.       

We need to be aware and provide insight where ignorance and hate may become prominent. The haters feel empowered. Now at the local level, we need to be diligent and oppose hate. Speak up. Help the world to understand us. Support local officials that support us. Resist giving up the rights and acceptance we have gained thus far.   

Friday, January 20, 2017

Friend's Friday - 1,000,000 Views

We interrupt this blog for a
special announcement!

I began my blog on July 16, 2015; A short 18 months ago. Why - "Because I love being a girl". That was my very first post. Much to my amazement Tuesday, I went over 1,000,000 views. This is an amazing achievement, I never dreamed would happen.  

I saved this post for Friend's Friday because, you, "my friends", made this possible.   

I never considered myself a writer and your tolerance of my dyslexic enhanced adventures is more than kind. In fact, your comments have been positive and encouraging.  I have drawn from your positive feedback and will continue to do so. Those that comment regularly, thank you.

I escaped and decided to live a full transgender life many years ago. As you well know, I am not on a transition path, but find much delight in my extended visits to the land of femininity. Who knows - maybe a full-time resident someday, but for now, I enjoy my dual passport status. I know that being transgender will always be a integral part of me.  

It is not only part of me - It defines my nature.  The positive experiences and downright enjoyment of being transgender has enhanced my life. I unnecessary wasted years fearing what others would think or perceive. Once I orchestrated my escape, I have not looked back.

In some small way, I hope to have influenced your escape. Live your life to the full. Be kind. Be loving. Be yourself!  Escape.

To my loyal readers, thank you. Let us look forward to 2,000,000.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Fashion Layout - Brighton

Brighton is a fun place to shop.  Likely you have one in a mall near you or have a store that sells the items as accessories. Many airports even have Brighton stores so with time to kill, it is a fun stop. They have grown from a just handbag and belt company to a full line of attractive and reasonably priced jewelry.

Vintage Brighton
Just the right accessories can make or break an outfit and I have always found tasteful accessories at Brighton. I first saw Brighton at a local Jacobson's over 20 years ago. The red bag shown, I purchased then and still have. For those in the Brighton know, it attacks a lot of attention. 

Brighton seems to keep their store and products fresh. I love the yellow purse above and it is on my wish list for a little later in the spring. Their "Tassel Fobs" are a fun way to dress up a purse and they have little mini-scarfs to add color and style.  

I purchased the Tassel Necklace as a signature piece. I wear black and white a lot and I have noticed many women wearing tassel jeweler this season.  This looked like a good addition and have seen similar pieces on other fashion blogs.       

The ring above is also a fun item. The stones snaps in and out and come in a variety of colors. Also Brighton a good selection of larger sizes. I have only shown a few of the available stones and the stones can be used in bracelets and earrings. Best of all, reasonably priced.  

So if Brighton is not on your list of "Girly" shopping places, add it.  You will not be disappointed.  

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Business Group Volunteer

Rhonda Working Check In.

I belong to the Palm Beach Business Group.  We have monthly breakfast meetings with important speakers that address relevant business subjects. Also we host a monthly cocktail reception and a monthly business forum for emerging businesses. (think shark tank). 

This past Friday morning we held our annual business summit.  This year's subject, "Age Reversal - Medical Breakthroughs".  It was held at the famous Palm Beach Breakers Resort.

I volunteered to help and worked the registration / check-in table.  We had an outstanding attendance of about 75 and local press coverage. Featured were many world renowned medical and business speakers. I was proud to help and be there. 

All dressed up and somewhere to go..... 

Palm Beach Business Group - 2017 Age Reversal Breakfast

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Feminine Differential - Turf Refugee

Last weekend I learned just how difficult heels can be when take out of their natural element - if there is a "natural element". My high heel Waterloo moment - outdoors and on grass. As your heels are slowly sinking into the turf, any semblance of being graceful is near impossible.

As I was getting a glass of wine at an outdoor bar, I must have looked like the incredible shrinking woman. "Weren't you taller when you order that Merlot?"  

I could not help but think of the role of Clair in the 2015 movie Jurassic World

The movie came under fire for its 'sexist' portrayal of heroine Bryce Dallas Howard who wore throughout the whole movie beautiful nude/creme heels. When I say heels, I don’t mean a hipster platform-sandal, summer wedge or a sensible low-lying kitten. These are the kind of stilettos you’d see a businesswoman wearing on a 90's made-for-TV movie (think Dynasty). Not the sort you'd see a woman running for her life in. Plus Howard does it all while wearing a cream outfit that stays remarkably blood-free, along with the matching high heels. Source - The Telegraph

I am good in heels - Real good. A natural. But I failed and knew that the outdoor bar was to close to a pool. I was not going to be the one to be on the "YouTube" viral list of the week. I kept my new beautiful heels dry and indoors. I stayed near the Hors d'oeuvre tables and had my wine deliverer, as needed - thank you. I was not alone. There were other women with me - all of us "turf refugees". 

So for next summer, file this away for future reference. if you are invited to an outdoor wedding, fashion show, pool party or beach soirée, think shoe practical.  

Monday, January 16, 2017

Event Season 2017 - Photos

New Friends 

Saturday, I did attend the Palm Beach HRC Winter Fête. it was held at a private residence in Wellington about 25 miles west of Palm Beach. There was somewhere around 150 in attendance. When I looked up the address on Google maps I thought at first this must be a country club based on the size of the building. However it was a home. Beautiful, new, elegant and located in the private Polo community that thrives in the Wellington area. The couple must have just opened the Frontgate catalog and said, yes. Very tasteful.   

There was food everywhere, and horderves were constantly being passed. There were even waiters that would retrieve drinks for you as you sat and talked.  Nice touch. A large logo wall was sat up as you entered and your photo was taken by professional photographer upon arrival. The South Florida weather cooperated beautifully with the temp in the mid 70's, so the party was both inside and out with a near full moon - perfect.      

There was a great mix of people. Many Local politicians, mayors, current and former house representatives, attorneys, and  polo players. For a good part of the evening I talked to a wonderful group of women. The outside, around the pool, was the main gathering place with high top tables, a DJ, dance floor, and two bars. The only problem was the area around the pool was grass (as in a golf course green). My heels kept sinking in so walking, even standing, in this are was a little precarious. Note to self - Next time, wedge heels.  

I received complements on my outfit and I was not over or under dressed. On the invitation, dress was listed as "Palm Beach Chic". What I wore, although a little over kill still looked elegant and I fit in. I made wonderful new friends (the group above) and connected with many old friends (photo below). 

Yes, the two women on either side of are twins.  Beautiful, elegant, intelligent, and fun.  I hope we get to connect again.  Among all four of us we had a great conversation.  

I loved my evening escape.  

Wonderful friends - Charlie and John. 

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Sunday Funnies (not) - 1/15

Bill Clinton 1998

Many of you love our soon to be x-president Barack Obama.  Many feal less so. As a person that grew up in the segregated rural south, one of my most proud political moments, was the day the United States of America elected a black man, Barack Obama. 

I voted for Mr. Obama with pride and still feel proud of how he served our country. I feel much more could have been accomplished had there not been such a deep political bias. Sad – I believe he only had the best interest of the county in his heart   

There is one major accomplishment that did occur in the past eight years. This was highlighted when President Obama sat down with Steve Kroft on "60 Minutes" for his final network television appearance.  Here in part is what was ask and said: 

 You didn’t change Washington, Kroft said to the president.

"I changed those things that were in my direct control," Obama said. "And I mean, look, I’m proud of the fact with two weeks to go, we are probably the first administration in modern history that hasn't had a major scandal in the White House."
"In that sense, we changed some things."

Thank you Mr. President. We are in the last week of President Obama's presidency and next week we move into uncharted territory.  Scandals are already swirling. 

Michelle Obama: "When they go low, we go high."


My up coming trips in starting in early February are :

Joliet, IL
Cornwall, ON
Brainerd, MN

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Friday, January 13, 2017

Event Season 2017

Saturday I plan on attending an elegant event thus the fashion lay out.  I purchased the black off the shoulder cocktail dress hoping an event would come along. The shoes are equally elegant and I hope to make an entrance/statement. The event, Palm Beach HRC's Winter Fête. I want HRC Palm Beach to know that, we the transgender, are a force to reckon with. 

I have had a love/hate relationship with HRC. In case you do not know this alphabetic soup acronym, it stands for the Human Rights Campaign. HRC describes itself this way:

The Human Rights Campaign represents a force of more than 1.5 million members and supporters nationwide. As the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.

What is not to love?  However, they have not always supported the transgender community and have been willing to throw us under the bus when the going got political. This goes back to 2007 when HRC took a stance on a version of Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which at the time included sexual orientation as a protected category but not gender identity or expression. HRC stood virtually alone among LGBT civil rights organizations in not denouncing a non-inclusive version of ENDA. Source Wikipedia.  

I was at the 2007 Southern Comfort Convention (SCC) when Joe Solmonese, then president of HRC, spoke before a crowd of approximately 900 trans people.  He promised, "Going forward, HRC would support only trans-inclusive legislation". The promise did not hold up long.  Ten days later HRC went weak again in neither supporting nor opposing the non-inclusive version of ENDA, being promoted in Congress by then Rep. Barney Frank. Transgender folks lost an ally in a battle already lost, when support would have gone far. 

HRC does seem to have progressed past this misstep. There is much on their web site that gives us lip service. There is no question that we are all going to face challenges for the next four years. The in-coming administration is hell bent of rolling back progress and we are going to need all the support we can find.  

HRC prove yourself.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Chamber Music Concert

I love chamber and classical music. Tuesday evening I attended the first of the Flagler Museum's 2017 Music Series concerts.  I have been attending these elegant events since 1999, their first year.  Here is a description of the Flagler Museum:
When it was completed in 1902, the New York Herald proclaimed that Whitehall, Henry Flagler's Gilded Age estate in Palm Beach, was "more wonderful than any palace in Europe, grander and more magnificent than any other private dwelling in the world." Today, Whitehall is a National Historic Landmark and is open to the public as the Flagler Museum, featuring guided tours, changing exhibits, and special programs. 

Wearing Lauren white sweater
Escada Pink Suit
The concert was special indeed.  It featured The Dover Quartet.  The Quartet catapulted to international stardom following a stunning sweep of the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, becoming one of the most in-demand ensembles in the world.  I attended one of their concerts in Santa Fe a few year back, so was familiar with their work.  What a treat.

I love chamber music but sometime it can be dry and slow. This was anything but that. We saw emotion in the faces of the group as they played lively and stirring music. 

Featured this evening by The Dove Quartet was Mozart, Beethoven, and a lesser played piece by Bedrich Smetana (1824-1884 Czech Republic). The last piece I had never heard and had a unique emotional sound.  

I attended the concert this evening with a very close friend that is the underwriter for both last year's season and this year's season. To start our evening we had dinner at one of my favorite Palm Beach restaurants.  When we arrived at the museum we had designated seats and received special attention before and after from the Museum's executive director. Above is our photo taken by the event photographer at the after champagne reception.  

What a wonderful evening.

This photo is from a concert in 2010 
it is printed in the 2017 Season Guide
Yes, I am somewhere in the middle.