Thursday, December 31, 2020

2020 Year In Review Photos


This post is number 366 for year 2020. What a year!  Almost all of the above are from post and there are many stories that go with the photos. I enjoyed looking back as I put this collage together.  Page through the 2020 posts to read about the "ESCAPES".

Here's to having  cherished ESCAPES in 2021!


Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Age Has Nothing To Do With It...

 How It Feels To Transition Later In Life

In September 2018 I wrote about Ruth Rose. Here is a followup from The Guardian. 

By: Gaby Hinsliff

Sat 17 Nov 2018

Ruth transitioned at 81, Ramses in his late 40s, and Bethan, at 57, is about to have surgery. Meet the trans baby boomers

Early in October, Ruth Rose went on holiday to Corfu with a group of female friends she had known for years. They swam in the sea every day, making the most of the late summer sunshine. On the last morning before flying home to England, the women took one last swim and skinny-dipped so as not to have to pack their costumes away wet.

Such adventures would once have been unthinkable for Rose. But the surgery she underwent at the age of 81 has opened doors she would never have thought possible. “In some ways it’s like having new hips after being told you would be condemned to arthritis for the rest of your life,” she says. “You do it, and life begins again. And that’s what happened to me. Age has nothing to do with it.”

Ruth Rose

When we read about people transitioning gender, the focus is often on teenagers; in an emotive debate about access to school changing rooms and Guides camping trips, older trans people are rendered almost invisible. Yet there are more than five times as many adult as child gender identity patients in the UK. Some are now having gender reassignment surgery not just in late middle age, but well into retirement.

The numbers remain tiny, but they are rising; according to the NHS, 75 people aged between 61 and 71 had gender reassignment operations in the seven years to 2015-16, and that’s not counting people who quietly transition without surgery. These trans baby boomers are now beginning to challenge received ideas not just about gender but age, and the capacity of older people to live bold, adventurous lives. “I think people need to learn quite fast that older people no longer all fit the white-haired granny stereotype,” says Jane Vass, the head of public policy at Age UK. The charity recently published advice to older people who are transitioning, covering everything from the impact on state pension ages to what to write on death certificates.

“If it was ever true that older people were all the same, it’s certainly not now. And yet we still seem to respond as a society to a very narrow view of what ageing is,” adds Vass. Later life is full of changes, she points out, from the end of a career to the death of a spouse. Why wouldn’t it also be a time in which people embrace opportunities denied them in the past, before it’s too late?

It’s perhaps only now that many older people feel comfortable coming out, having grown up in a time when being trans was so steeped in shame and silence that many couldn’t even put a name to what they felt. “I remember as a child thinking, am I unique? Am I strangely perverted?” says Christine Burns, the 64-year-old trans activist and author of the social history Trans Britain: Our Journey From The Shadows. It was only in the 1960s, when the Sunday People newspaper began salaciously to out trans people – most famously the Vogue model April Ashley – that she understood she was not alone. “To see those stories, egregious as they were, helped in a sense. I always say that, on that Sunday morning, I learned there was a name for people like me, but also that it was worse than I feared.”

Half a century on, trans people undoubtedly still experience stigma and discrimination. Fierce debate about proposed changes to the Gender Recognition Act, which could enable people to identify themselves as trans rather than going through a drawn-out process of medical and psychiatric assessment, has turned trans acceptance into a political football. But for those raised in an era when men could be arrested just for wearing women’s clothes in public, the thaw in public attitudes is still striking. “When I first came out [in the 1970s], I got reported to the police and my employer, for being in charge of a company vehicle dressed as a woman,” recalls Jenny-Anne Bishop, the chair of the support group Trans Forum, who had gender reassignment surgery at the age of 59. “Now I’m as likely to have lunch with the chief constable to discuss hate crime reporting. It’s changed that much.”

Read more of this very interesting article in the Guardian.  

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

I Love A Success Story - Michelle Hendley

Michelle Hendley is an actress living and working in NYC


My Note: Back in 2018 I wrote about the US movie "Boy Meets Girl" and its star Michelle Hendley. At the time I felt it to be one of the most heart warming Transgender stories I had ever watched.  I still feel that way. 

I am so please the Michelle is still around and has written an article for "PopSugar".  Quoted below is part of the article.  Please read it all. I never grow tired of success stories in our wonderful community.  


There Are So Many Transgender Stories to Tell — and I'm Hell-Bent on Telling Them

BY Michelle Hendley

June 2, 2017

Before I moved to NYC, a good friend of mine lent me one final word of advice: "If there is anything — anything at all — you can do in this world besides acting, do that instead." Film and television are industries notorious for churning out iconic silver-screen legends and spitting out the rest who couldn't make the cut. Actors routinely face rejection and criticism in the audition room and are constantly compared to their contemporaries, from their skills to their looks. The stakes feel even higher when you find yourself grouped into a niche typecast. That is to say, you are easily lumped with other actors who fit a particular descriptor — blond, tattooed, old, or in my case, transgender.

As a transgender actress, opportunity comes on a double-edged sword. If a film or show is seeking transgender talent, you have a considerably better chance of getting the audition than the majority of cis actors out there. However, the roles available to transgender artists, while certainly growing and improving, are often limited to archaic stereotypes and unsavory characters. It was not until my fourth or fifth audition as a downtrodden, junkie, crossdressing prostitute that I fully understood the gravity of my friend's earlier advice.

Typecasting, frustrating and limiting as it can be, has also allowed me to meet just about every other trans actress working on the East Coast, because we all end up at the same casting calls. There is comfort in being able to confide in other women who not just relate but empathize and experience the exact same struggles. It is a tight and fiercely supportive community to be a part of, because each of us knows that our only chance to make change in this competitive and cut-throat world is if we speak as a unified whole. Progress is an often slow and uphill battle, but just in the past year alone we have seen amazing trans-positive and trans-collaborated works like Her Story and Transparent rise to recognition. It is deeply affirming to see girls like myself making headway, but there is still so much work to be done.

Read more here

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Merry And Bright

I hope your holiday was merry and bright.


Thursday, December 24, 2020

The Night Before Christmas - 2020

 Merry Christmas!

Many of you will remember this alternative version of the "Night Before Christmas" from last Christmas eve. I hope this become a tradition for many Christmas eves to come. Enjoy and have a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.  


Cross Dressing Night Before Christmas

Posted to alt.fashion.crossdressing by Shae Guerin  2002-12-23. 

'Twas the night before Christmas, and all thru the house

I was making my plans to look more like my spouse

I carefully laid out my very best clothes

My bra and my panties, my slip and my hose

My stockings weren't hung by the chimney tonite

They were on me instead, feeling sensually tight

My dress was of velvet, a burgundy red

And on my long nails a new polish was spread

With makeup and jewelry, high heels on my feet

I was looking so sexy, and feeling so sweet

When out in the yard there arose such a noise

That I sprang from my bedroom, forgetting my poise

The moon on the snow with it's brilliant white glitter

Reminds me of lace, to set my heart a-twitter

When what to my long-lashed eyes should appear

But a person in red with a sleigh and reindeer

But I couldn't tell, was it a 'he' or a 'she'

The one with the pack was dressed somewhat like me

There in the sleigh was this 'cutsey' old flirt

With a white wig and makeup, a red blouse and skirt

The reindeer were sparkling, with rhinestones and pearls

And their antlers in ribbons, so they all looked like girls

When s/he stepped from the sleigh, to my eyes were revealed

Her knee-hi black boots with their seven-inch heels

Santa just blushed, but I stood there and smiled

And said, "Hello, my dear, can you stay for awhile?"

"Well you finally caught me", he said with a pout

"At this time on Christmas, folks are seldom about."

"I don't go enfemme very ofen at home,

Mrs Clause doesn't like it, so I do it alone.

"So when I give out goodies to make others smile

"I like to feel pretty and femme for awhile."

"So I ride off dressed up, from my hi-heels to wig,

"On Christmas eve night while I'm doing my gig."

I said, "Don't worry Santa, your secret is safe

Why don't you come in and just freshen your face."

We sat and we talked and vented our passion

For feminine frills and the latest new fashions

We finally parted with a hug and a kiss

She said, "I must go now, or some children I'll miss"

I went to my party and had a great time

With music and laughter and good food and wine

But when I returned and looked under my tree

I found some new pretties from sweet Santa to me

Lacy panties, a bra and a soft satin blouse

Perfumes and some candles to light up my house

But it wasn't the goodies that swept away my blues

It was knowing that Santa was a cross dresser too

So next time don't judge all the people you meet

By what they are wearing when out on the street

For in being ones self, there's no 'wrong or right' 

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Beep Beep

 Hundred bucks says there's a coyote under there!

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

I Love A Success Story - Kate Freeman

 A Jeopardy! contestant is celebrating a historic win after claiming a victory in the long-running quiz show.

Kate Freeman,
 a financial analyst from Lake Orion, Michigan

By : Nick Duffy

DECEMBER 15, 2020

Kate Freeman, a financial analyst from Lake Orion, Michigan, sported a trans pride pin as she took part in the quiz show on Friday (11 December).

A streak of right answers saw her best Kendra Blanchette, who had won the previous two episodes, taking home $5,599 in winnings.

Fans believe that Freeman is the first out transgender person to win the long-running show, which has been on the air since 1964 and has aired more than 8,000 episodes.

At least one former Jeopardy! champion has transitioned since appearing on the show, former contestant and long-time fan Jennifer Morrow clarified.

There is at least one other J! champ who has publicly spoken about being trans, a multi-game winner in the 1990s, although she used a different name and pronouns during her run. — Jennifer Morrow

Freeman’s time on the show comes in the final run of episodes featuring the show’s long-serving host Alex Trebek, who passed away from cancer last month.

Speaking to Michigan Live, Kate Freeman said: “I spent a lot of time learning about and reflecting on my gender identity in grad school, coming out as transgender and lesbian a few months before graduating.

“I’m proud to be out and I know representation is important.

Monday, December 21, 2020

Uncle Carl

 Instinct Magazine:

I just discovered your song “Uncle Carl Came Out On Christmas.” What a perfect balance of catchy melody, pitch perfect vocals, and lyrics that land with authenticity. What inspired the song?

Aaron LaCombe: Thank you very much! A couple of years ago I was invited to participate in a Christmas Songwriting Contest. I maybe take myself a little too seriously as a songwriter, so the idea of writing a Christmas song just seemed cliche’ to me and I wanted to sort of see if there was a way to make it catch people off guard. 

I took cues from some experiences some close friends and family have had, and once I got started I found myself on a tightrope of making it a little bit funny, a little sad, and a little sweet.  It came in dead last at the contest, which is when I started to think I might really have something.



Saturday, December 19, 2020

You Only Live Once...

 "...but if you do it right, once is enough.”

 Mae West

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Part of Our/My History - Jim Bailey

 JIM BAILEY sings Barbra Streisand on Carol Burnett 
''Dont Rain On My Parade'' (1970)

James William Bailey (January 10, 1938 – May 30, 2015)

Bailey appeared in over 70 television and movie roles, including appearances on Ally McBeal, Here's Lucy, Night Court, The Rockford Files, Switch, Vega$, The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The Ed Sullivan Show, The Carol Burnett Show, The Merv Griffin Show, Late Night with David Letterman, The Mike Douglas Show, The Dean Martin Show and The Joan Rivers Show. (Wikipedia) 

In June 2009 Bailey played London's West End for the 40th anniversary of Judy's death. Susie Boyt from The Times wrote:

There is nothing camp or stagey about his act—it can scarcely even be described as an act, for Bailey inhabits Garland's persona to such an extent that well, there she is. It is a supreme illusion, a sort of perfect madness.

I saw Jim on the Ed Sullivan show in the early 1960's.  I was entranced. Not only could a man dressed as a woman, but the fact that he could do it so well left me speechless.  I saw his show live several times during the preceding decades and never was disappointed.  Jim helped me see possibilities, I never envisioned before.  Thank you.    

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Musical Interlude - Just Like A Woman


Just Like a Woman" by Bob Dylan

Nobody feels any pain
Tonight as I stand inside the rain
Ev'rybody knows
That Baby's got new clothes
But lately I see her ribbons and her bows
Have fallen from her curls
She takes just like a woman, yes she does
She makes love just like a woman, yes she does
And she aches just like a woman
But she breaks just like a little girl.

The history of the song does not intimate anything other than a song about Dyland's rumored relationship with fellow folk singer Joan Baez.  Although the lyrics are haunting to those of us that, "ache just like a woman..."  

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

High Heel Boots

Coach Jemma Soft Calf Brown 


The sex is in the heel even if you break it
The sex is in the heel, honey you can't fake it
Jack it up 'cause I'm no flat tire
Mack it up six inches higher…

Kinky Boots - Sex Is In The Heel

The  Coach Jemma ankle boot above was an eBay purchase last week.  Very reasonable and fits my odd high-instep foot. Buying boots is always a challenge. The new ones are in brown and complement the black pair I already have. I guess the old saying, "if the shoes fits buy it in every color" works for me!     

Monday, December 14, 2020

Corey Rae - A Safe Space


Corey Rae
From Corey's Blog:

I'm Corey Rae, an activist, actress, consultant, model, producer, speaker, and writer who helps break social stigmas surrounding transgender women. I was born in Los Angeles, California, and  lived in New Jersey and New York for 17 years. In 2009, I started my transition from male to female at the age of 15, and became the World’s first openly transgender woman to win the title of Prom Queen in 2010. After high school, I lived stealth for five years, not disclosing my transition to anyone. After the tragic shooting in June 2016 at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Fl.,  I came out publicly through this website’s first blog post, “Allow Me to Reintroduce Myself.” Six months later, in January of 2017,  I embarked on a one-way trip back home to LA. 

Since the launch of my blog, I have dedicated my life to representing transgender women in a positive light through various industries and platforms. I have both a strong personal and academic knowledge of the LGBTQIA+ community. I studied and minored in the sociology of gender and sexuality at Hofstra University and in Amsterdam at UvA. I’ve lived an "abnormally normal life” by being stealth and I admit to not identifying wholly with being transgender in the past; but it gave me an opportunity to prove a point - transgender women are women. I’ve made my own dreams come true, and I now have my sights set on making a monumental difference for the transgender community and the world.

On this site, I write about my journey as a transgender woman, which illustrates my life experiences as well as share the stories of inspiring LGBTQIA+ members.  I believe in making the world a better place by being kind, persistent, and thoughtful. I hope to inspire acceptance, authenticity, and confidence.


Friday, December 11, 2020

Holiday Party 2020


This is a fashion layout from some time ago. This year's holiday parties are going to be few.  In fact the only outing I have scheduled is my Mercedes club luncheon event this coming weekend.  We has scaled down the event from its typical country clue event to a semi-outdoor waterside restaurant.  We have limited the attendance to about one-third of last year. 

There is really no need for a shopping trip for this event.  Dresses I have "a-many" and justification is just not there.  So I will select something red (a girl need to stand out sometimes) and go from there.  

If you are in need of a holiday dress, Ralph Lauren jersey knit dresses always fit well and keep their style from year-to-year. My preference is the pull on style in petite which eliminates the back zipper. I am just not as flexible reaching behind my back as before.   

My only Black Friday / Cyber-Monday concession was with Cole Haan.  75% off "Go-To Stiletto Pump", 3" heel in Mahogany Rose Leather. Cole Haan is one of the perfect-fit heels that I grab when I know I will be on my feet or walking any distance. Can you have too many nude heels?   


Do you have any parties this season? If nothing else, get dressed in a beautiful outfit, open a good bottle of wine/soda, cook something nice and watch a Netflix romantic movie/series.


Thursday, December 10, 2020

It Never Goes Away

Gender Transition at a Mature Age

Book Review

"It Never Goes Away" is the title of Dr. Koch's book.  It deals in detail with her coming out as female and transitioning.  It is well written and covers many details civilians, or those contemplating transition with little support, may not know.

As with so many of the book of this nature, Dr. Koch lists her accomplishments as if she alone invented and solved the transgender conundrum. I have always contended that in a room on transgender individuals, one could start the story, stop mid-paragraph, and have someone continue right where the story left off. We have a common collective story.  

Also, much of our current acceptance and accomplishments are due to those that went before.  Support groups, although misguided at first have prevented us all from feeling we were alone. One need not wait until "Mature Age" of just read a "How To" book.  Ask for support from our community.     

There is one fact that Dr. Koch did get absolutely correct: 

It Never Goes Away!



The book is available on Amazon - Here is the book description:

If you are transgendered, the feeling of wanting your body to match the sex you feel you are never goes away. For some, though, especially those who grew up before trans people were widely out and advocating for equality, these feelings were often compartmentalized and rarely acted upon. Now that gender reassignment has become much more commonplace, many of these people may feel increasing pressure to finally undergo the procedures they have always secretly wanted.

Dr. Anne L. Koch
Dr. Anne L. Koch received both her DMD and Certificate in Endodontics from the University of Pennsylvania.  She is also the founder and past Director of the Postdoctoral Program in Endodontics and Microsurgery at the Harvard School of Dental Medicine.   Following her clinical and academic career, Annie formed her own successful technology and development company, Real World Endo, of which she was CEO and President.   Dr. Koch is the holder of multiple patents and the author of more than one hundred and fifty articles in her specialty field. Dr. Koch has also presented more than one thousand lectures worldwide. 

In addition to her clinical specialty, Dr. Koch is a strong advocate for professional women and presents at many medical and dental schools.  Among her various presentations is, “The Entrepreneurial Woman Doctor” and she has gifted a large seminar / lecture room at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine.  Additionally, she has endowed a five-year program dedicated to Diversity and Inclusion issues at the Harvard School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Koch maintains a faculty position at PENN (Department of Endodontics) as well as serving as a Senior Fellow with Penn Medicine. She also is a member of the Board of Overseers for the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine and maintains an adjunct faculty position at the Harvard School of Dental Medicine. Dr. Koch is an active member of numerous professional societies and organizations.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

I Love A Success Story - Jesse James Keitel

 Jesse James Keitel makes LGBTQ+ history with starring role on Big Sky

Jesse James Keitel

My Note:  I started watching the ABC Series "Big Sky" last evening.  I had recorded (DVR) the first three episodes and became immediately hooked. The character "Jerrie" is an amazing actor, playing an important role. It is worth watching to see the strength, reality and  authenticity being portrayed by her. 

If you have missed episodes try and go back and watch on-demand. Also there is a recap at then start of each episode so you can catch up there.      

From Gay Times 


Breaking barriers never looked so good!

Non-binary actor Jesse James Keitel is making history with her upcoming lead role on the new television series Big Sky.

Keitel is the first non-binary actor to be a series regular on primetime television.

When the news was announced Jesse, who uses the pronouns they/them and she/her, took to Instagram to express her excitement for the new role stating: “Wow. So endlessly grateful. HERE WE GO!”

In a recent Q&A with Variety co-star Kylie Bunbury praised Keitel’s work on the series, stating: “First of all, she’s incredible. But she’s representing for nonbinary people, and for ABC to do this and to have Jesse, who is incredibly talented, I feel like that’s worthy of a cheers.”

The new series follows a detective and ex-cop partnering up to find two missing sisters that have been kidnapped by a truck driver in Montana.

Keitel will be playing the character of Jerrie, a young nonbinary musician that unknowingly falls into the trap of the abductor.

The show stars Bunbury as Cassie Dewell, Ryan Phillippe as Cody Hoyt, and Katheryn Winnick as Jenny Hoyt.

Series creator, David E. Kelley described the show as a “thrill ride and a great piece of entertainment at 10 o’clock at night (ABC Tuesday).”

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Dolly Parton - I Dress For Myself


Dolly Parton 


Dolly Parton is a woman that likes looking her best at all times, for a good reason.

Talking to RuPaul Charles in the new issue of Marie Claire magazine, the icon says she's always dressed to impress because she never wants to be caught off guard should disaster strike, which, after 2020, is logic we can get behind.

"I have to always stay ready -- street ready, I always say. I have to keep my makeup on and keep my hair done," she told Charles. "Like, when I'm in L.A....if it's going to earthquake, if we get an earthquake, I'm not running out in the street looking like you look now."

Parton added: "I have to be ambulance-ready at all times, if I get sick or something."

The petite star also said she had no shame in her heel-wearing ways. She even wears them while at home cooking.

"They're not always as high as the ones I wear for show. But I'm little. I'm short. And I have to wear heels in order to reach my cabinets," she joked.

Above all, though, she added:

I'm comfortable in my own skin; I'm comfortable with my image. I dress for myself more than I do for somebody else.

Parton is currently making press rounds promoting her holiday album, "A Holly Dolly Christmas," and her Netflix film, "Christmas on the Square," which was released last month.

Monday, December 7, 2020

Schitt's Creek - The Wine - Not The Label


David Rose (Daniel Levy) tells Stevie (Emily Hampshire) that he's fond of a wide variety of drinking experiences in this metaphor-heavy scene from Schitt's Creek S1E10, "Honeymoon.

Stevie: So, just to be clear… I’m a red wine drinker.

David: That’s fine.

Stevie: Okay, cool. I *only* drink red wine. And up until last night, I was under the impression that you, too, *only* drank red wine. But I guess I was wrong?

David: I see where you’re going with this. Um, I *do* drink red wine. But I *also* drink white wine. And I’ve been known to sample the occasional rose. And a couple summers back I tried a merlot that used to be a chardonnay, which got a bit complicated.

Stevie: Oh, so you’re just really open to *all* wines.

David: I like the wine and not the label. Does that make sense?

Stevie: Yes, it does.

Saturday, December 5, 2020

Friday, December 4, 2020

You Remind

I am sure that this cartoon has been published before and likely you have seen it.  If you are young do not waste a moment. Relish your time in the spotlight. Be who you are and live a full life.

Lets all hope we will have the opportunity to tell a young transgender person, "You remind me..."


Thursday, December 3, 2020

Men Are From Venus


Venus Asymmetrical (One Shoulder Grommet Top)

The title above was used several weeks ago at another blog. It is cute and described perfectly my obsession with the Venus clothing catalog.  It is a Florida online store with maybe an outlet in Jacksonville.  When one of their prolific catalogs arrives, they are such fun to browse. It brings back my wonderful memories of studying the Sears Catalog in my youth. 

Which brings up a question in my mind:  Let's face it, the models are young and beautiful. So am I desiring the fashions or deep in my heart do I want to look like / "be" the model? 

Marlon Brando in "On The Water Front" lamented, "I coulda been a contender. I could've been somebody, instead ...". Who of us has not felt the same sadness at some point.

To my regret, it is becoming more difficult each day to create an image that is in my head. There are traces sometimes. However, I am sure it is delusional to pretend about youth/beauty. Please understand, I am not depressed and have lived a wonderful full life. I receive acceptance and have done my best to be an ambassador for our  transgender community. My glass is always over half full and even runs over at times; as it does today.   

Which bring me back to the Venus catalog. 

Several weeks ago I discussed the asymmetrical neckline and how it is a feminine differential.  Last week the top above was on sale at Venus (One Shoulder Grommet Top) and even at its regular price, $34.00*, it is cute and a "youthful - give me a try look".  The gray color works with my hair and pairing it with white tights/jeans will make a good combination. I have found the off-the-shoulder neckline works for me, even its one-shoulder derivation.

*27.99 today (12/3/2020) and a shipping deal.