Boss Up with Bevin Your dream life is at the end of your comfort zone


California Tour 20FEMME Starts Thursday: Fat Activist Panel, Flabulous 2, Re/Dress Shopportunity in Oakland!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — Bevin @ 5:12 pm

You may or may not know that I am a native Californian, from the East Bay, specifically. Rachel Maddow and I share a hometown and high school, but I’m only 31 so we didn’t hang out or anything. It feels really weird to be going “home” to do mostly performing and being at a conference and being a shop girl. I won’t even see my family until I go to LA the following week. I think everyone has some complicated feelings when they travel home. Mine are all aflutter, but nevertheless I am focusing on all of the amazing shows/documentaries/shopportunities I get to be part of in the next week.

My subsequent LA trip is a family event but I’ve decided to focus on beach, bourbon and burgers as much as possible around it.

If you can make it to any of the following events, I’d love to meet you!! Especially at the shopportunity, that’s going to be really fun. I hope people bring champagne.

Thursday, June 3, 20FEMME * San Francisco, CA
Queer Fat’titude: an evening of irreverence.
6PM -8PM * Free
LGBT Historical Society
657 Mission Street (at 2nd St), Suite 300

Bevin is on the panel! We’ll be celebrating the history of fat activism in the Bay Area (and beyond)! Come out to the San Francisco LGBT Historical Society! There will be a fierce panel of queer fat activists, a photo exhibit, and yummy treats! Virgie Tovar will be moderating the panel.

Saturday, June 5, 20FEMME * Oakland, CA
Bevin Branlandingham FemmeCees & Curates
Saturday Night Cabaret at NOLOSE
9PM Show / Dancing 11:00ish * Open to Conference Attendees Only

Information at this link!

Sunday, June 6, 20FEMME * San Francisco, CA
Kentucky Fried Woman & Jay Walker, in conjunction with the National Queer Arts Festival present
Flabulous! 2: Fatter Than Ever!
7PM show * Tickets: $12-$20
African-American Art and Culture Complex

Bevin performs in a very exciting show for fat queers and their allies. Flabulous! 2: Fatter Than Ever! is the second live performance production by Kentucky Fried Woman and Jay Walker featuring fat queers and their allies, highlighting the lived experiences of fat queers and envisioning revolutionary possibilities for fighting body fascism and embracing all bodies as beautiful. More information & tickets at the event website!

Flabulous 2

Monday, June 7, 20FEMME * Oakland, CA
Bevin Branlandingham is a Shopgirl at
SHOPPORTUNITY 20FEMME: Re/Dress NYC & Size Queen Clothing in Oakland
5PM-9PM * Econo Lodge, 10 Hegenberger Rd.



For the Love of My Wardrobe

I move tomorrow. And Monday. And a little bit yesterday. There’s nothing like having to take literally every article of clothing you own to the laundromat to remind you how much you own. That’s 2 Prius loads full. And I got rid of 12 white garbage bags of clothes during the Fat Girl Flea Market, so it is extra crazy realizing how much there is.

When I think about my wardrobe, though, I do realize that I have a lot of different aesthetics to maintain. I have a whole career wardrobe, which includes the business casual I use predominantly because I do transactional work and I’m a little flashy as well as the requisite suits. Even though I am transitioning to my new career which will involve some business work, I still need that stuff, because I will need to wear it and there’s no greater stress than needing a suit last minute, as a plus size girl.

Then there’s what I call the queer fat femme wardrobe, which is basically my everyday (and every night). Of course, everything has a different level of fancy–I have 5 different red halter dresses to illustrate this point. Is this a casual BBQ sundress situation or a tight wiggle dress night out? Is this something more conservative and less cleavagey I can wear to a baby shower with my ex-girlfriend’s parents (true story) or a flashy life of the party everyone will stare at me I look so good dress? Dressing Femme is complicated, everyone has a part of their body they don’t want to show off and parts that they do. I’ve even got parts I show off for political reasons.

And then there’s the whole performance wardrobe. Honey, I’ve got a ton of majorly unique and adorable costumes and only increase the amount the longer I work at a plus sized vintage clothing store. I had to get most of them dry cleaned as part of the transition to the new apartment, and the women at the dry cleaners were exclaiming over some of them. I am proud of my collection.

But just because I CAN explain why my wardrobe is so big doesn’t mean I NEED to. I don’t have to justify my clothes to anyone, that’s part of living as a Fierce Femme. It’s being who you are, loving what, who and how you love without justification to anyone but yourself. Yeah, I’ve got a lot of clothes, but I love them, I love myself and they make me really happy.

I’ve learned over the last few years you should only keep what you LOVE. While I do LOVE a lot of things, and I’m trying to do the best I can to weed out “stuff” from my life. But at this point I know with 98% certainty that everything I pull out of those laundry bags once Monday evening comes and I’m for real in my new place and starting my new life across the Hudson I am going to squeal with delight being reunited with my wardrobe.

So, yeah, the crimp in my back only one day into the moving process is all for the love of my clothes. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I leave you with a wonderful video I found starring my colleague in fat activism Marilyn Wann and some big moves dancers.


The Queer Fat Femme Stop on the Femmethology Blog Tour

Today is my day on the Femmethology blog tour! It’s like we’re riding a virtual pink sparkly magic bus and I’m up front showing you what’s to your right, to your left and just past that next building over there if you squint a little and that UPS truck gets out of the way!

If you’d like a preview of some of the work from the book, check out the latest episode of FemmeCast, Episode 8. The first installment in the Cripping Femme series is the essay by Leslie Freeman from the book. “Essence/Artifice”. It’s moving and powerful. Coming up on FemmeCast, Margaret Price’s essay “Not That Girl” will be featured as the next installment of Cripping Femme and part of my courtship themed episode (Episode 10)!

Anyway, lots of people on the tour have reviewed the pdf of the book sent to them or talked about what Femme means to them and all of that. I’m here to talk about some of the authors.

Basically, here’s the deal about anthologies–the authors don’t make any money. Maybe they get a copy of the book and upwards of $50 (the Femmethology authors I talked to got a copy of the volume they’re featured in and according to one author, contributors are paid royalties). Even royalties are dicey because they only kick in once the book is turning a profit and are split! Anthology authors submit for the publicity, contributing to a greater discussion and the chance to have their voice heard, which is super important.

However, in these “troubled economic times” or as I like to call it “The Hateful Bush Economy” it is extremely crucial to support art made for our community, by our community. Since so many of the authors in the book submitted for the love of Femme community and don’t get paid for it, I thought I would throw back a little love at them!

Me and Damien hosting Speaking of Femme NYC. Our next one is scheduled for June 3 at Bluestockings!
DAMIEN LUXE (billed in the book as Hadassah Hill but is giving herself a new name for her 30th birthday) is a NYC based performance artist, writer and DIY media mogul. She’s also my co-Head Madam in the NYC Femme Family and probably one of the most community-oriented people I know. Right now she’s obsessed with getting a van, so if you know of any good deals within driving distance of NYC let her know.

You can buy her cd through cd baby right here, or at her website right here.

CHERRY POPPINS (in the book as Allison Stelly) is a fierce Femme activist, community organizer and dragster from Austin, TX. I met her at a Femme workshop at IDKE in Chicago, in 2004. She has a lot of different projects and performances going on, including being the forefront of the Femme ATX chapter of the Femme Mafia. She’s also sometimes a purveyor of amazing Femme crafts on Etsy (but is on hiatus right now) and her currect passion project is the Queertastiks, a subversive, mixed-gender, body positive queerleading squad using cheer-based performance art and dance as a tool for social justice.

If you find yourself in and around Austin sometime soon, check them out!

LEAH LAKSHMI PIEPZNA-SAMARASINHA is one of my besties, a spoken word artist and writer. My favorite line from any of her poems is “Love is an anarchic bitch”. Too true! She’s finishing up her MFA at Mills College and someday soon her memoirs are going to drop. In the meantime, you can buy her book “Consensual Genocide” at Tsar Books by searching for the title or Leah’s name. Piepzna-Samarasinha is her last name. She also performs her one-woman show “Grown Woman Show” all over the place (and can be booked for your college gig by emailing brownstargirl at gmail) and the tour that she co-curates, Mangos with Chili, is going on a Southern route in the fall, so check our their dates when released. Mangos with Chili is truly phenominal.

Leah also co-founded the Femme Sharks, is a correspondent on FemmeCast and talks really fast because the faster she talks the faster she’ll change the world. That’s my theory.

GINA DE VRIES is a San Francisco-based queer fat femme writer and spoken word performer who has been out and publishing since she was, like, 13. She’s really sweet and earnest and community-minded and really fun to have out at brunch. Her website is comprehensive, and tells you about all of her events, including a monthly sex workers writing workshop. The name from her website (Queer Shoulder) is from the Allen Ginsberg quote “America, I’m putting my queer shoulder to the wheel.” Gina proves it again and again by working hard to bring her light and art to the world!

When you see work by the Femmethology authors out and about, snatch it up! Most of them are up and coming and can use the community support.

The rest of the Femmethology tour dates are below, check out what those tour guides have to offer!

4/1. Sugarbutch Chronicles

4/2. Ellie Lumpesse
4/3. Queer-o-mat
4/6. Catalina Loves
4/7. cross-post: The Femme’s Guide and Femme Fagette
4/8. Daphne Gottlieb

4/9. Bilerico Project
4/10. Screaming Lemur: Femme-inism and Other Things
4/13. The Femme Hinterland
4/14. Bochinche Bilingüe: Borderlands Writing and The Vagina Adventures
4/15. Dorothy Surrenders

4/16. Miss Avarice Speaks Her Mind
4/17. The Femme Show
4/18. CyDy Blog
4/19. Sexuality Happens
4/20. Queer Fat Femme
4/21. Sublimefemme Unbound

4/22. and Jess I Am (butch-femme couple day!)
4/23. FemmeIsMyGender
4/24. The Lesbian Lifestyle
4/25. Femme Fluff

4/26. Weldable Cookies
4/27. The Verbosery
4/28. A Consuming Desire and Creative Xicana
4/29. Queercents
4/30. en|Gender


Cupcake Cabaret

Filed under: Uncategorized — Bevin @ 10:45 pm

Cupcake Cabaret is a performance celebrating the strength we get from what marks us different in this world. Size, gender, sexuality, class, race, dis/ability, age, religion and all numbers of identities bring the artists in the series a sense of power and esteem.

An ongoing series curated by Bevin Branlandingham, Cupcake Cabaret features comedy, drag, burlesque, spoken word, film, performance art and all manner of genres celebrating the radical act of self-love.

Saturday, March 7, 2009 * San Francisco, CA
Cupcake Cabaret SF! co-curated with Gina De Vries
Doors at 7:00, Show at 7:30 * $10
Center for Sex and Culture:
1519 Mission St. San Francisco (In Between 11th and South Van Ness)

Featuring an All-Femme Cast:


Bevin Branlandingham is the Host and Producer of FemmeCast: The Queer Fat Femme Podcast Guide to Life. She is a flamboyant femmecee, queer high femme, drag king, burlesque and comedy performer. She co-produces and hosts Gayety, a Queer Comedy Cabaret based in New York City. She is Head Madam of the Femme Family–the New York Chapter of the Femme Mafia, a member of NOLOSE, and organizer of Fat and Queer NYC. In 2008 Bevin received a Commendation from the Mayor of Jersey City for her work with the LGBT community. She was a founding member and producer of the Royal Renegades of Philadelphia, a drag troupe that performed throughout the US and Canada. Her writing has been featured in the Gender Matters newsletter, Kingdom Magazine, and the Gender Bent Zine. Her interests include travel, knitting, music, her shih tzu and community building.

She is best described as “Equal parts glitter, cupcakes, good genes and Sephora.”


Gina de Vries is a queer femme writer, rabble-rouser, sex worker,
pervert, and Paisan. Her fiction, journalism, memoir, and smut have
appeared dozens of places, including: Femmethology; Baby, Remember My
Name; Dirty Girls; That’s Revolting!; Bound to Struggle; make/shift
magazine; and Curve magazine. Currently, Gina curates shows for
long-running queer performance series San Francisco in Exile, blogs
for national LGBT blog Bilerico, and teaches a writing workshop for
sex workers at San Francisco’s Center for Sex & Culture (where she
also serves on the Advisory Board). She can be cruised online at


Born and raised in the concrete canyons of NYC, Mo has also been writing and performing on stage since the age of five. In addition to performing in dozens of commercials, she sang on the soundtrack of The Wiz and appeared as an extra in many films and television shows. She attended New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Playwright’s Horizon’s Wing. She appears in the cult classic film, “America’s Deadliest Home Video”, along with childhood star / media train-wreck Danny Bonaduce.

Her one-woman show 69Stories: One Pervert’s Tale was developed with Anne Galjour and premiered by Crowded Fire, and enjoyed 5 incarnations including three full runs in San Francisco between 1997 and 2004. Her theater work has received critical acclaim and been recognized with several awards, including awards for “Best Local Actress” and “Most Radiant Presence in Shackles”, a category created for her solo show and no doubt to be a singular honor! Mollena is a founding member of Crowded Fire. She is also the playwright of her hit solo shows 69 Stories and No Good Deed. With CF, she has appeared in Greek Salad, A Hard Heart, Top Girls, Slaughter City, ‘Maid, One Big Lie. and Gone. She has also worked with Women’s Will, Theater Rhinoceros and Berkeley Repertory Company. She will be appearing in the Audio-Sculpture “WORMHOLE” tis spring and the new play “DRIP” this fall. Check that out at

Zuleikha Mahmood is a queer mixed Afghan American writer who lives in
Oakland. She has work forthcoming in Kohl, an anthology of Afghan
American women’s fiction, and has self-published several zines,
including The Ancestors Were Sharks!/ The Ancestors Hate Us?. In 2008,
she performed at Writers with Drinks, San Francisco in Exile, Queer
Open Mic, Femina Potens, as well as in the National Queer Arts
Festival, and she also toured with Mangos with Chili, a queer and
trans people of color performing arts cabaret. Zuleikha is committed
to documenting the lives of Muslim drop-outs, fuck-ups, sluts, and


Julia Serano is an Oakland-based writer, performer and author of Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity (Seal Press, 2007), a collection of personal essays that reveal how misogyny shapes many of the myths and misconceptions people have about transsexual women and others on the trans feminine spectrum. Julia’s other writings have appeared in anthologies (including BITCHfest: Ten Years of Cultural Criticism from the Pages of Bitch Magazine, Word Warriors: 30 Leaders in the Women’s Spoken Word Movement, and Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and A World Without Rape), in feminist, queer and progressive publications such as AlterNet, Bitch,, Out, Clamor, make/shift, Kitchen Sink and LiP, and have been used as teaching materials in gender studies courses across North America. For more information about all of her creative endeavors, check out

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