Substantia made us feel awesome. We read over her information she provided before the shoot and we kind of just paced around until she got there. Once she was there, it was really easy to get naked. I felt awesome after the shoot, never really knowing how I got to this place in my life where I was naked and proud. After the photos were released it was just so neat to see us through Substantia’s eyes. How she posed us, how we looked at each other and how my body looked.
Sparklez says in our interview, "Trans women are worth more dead than alive. We have more bio power dead than alive." Let's change this and amplify the voices of Black Trans Women! It starts with listening to their perspective (like this interview!) and it moves to giving opportunities for work, housing and community organizing that respects and center their needs and experiences.
My favorite takeaway was the authenticity quote by Kanye West. He had told Kim Kardashian West, his wife and Bruce Jenner's step-daughter, this anecdote.
Look, I can be married to the most beautiful woman in the world, and I am. I can have the most beautiful little daughter in the world, and I have that. But I’m nothing if I can’t be me. If I can’t be true to myself, they don’t mean anything.
Kanye is exactly right. When you aren’t authentic to yourself, it is nearly impossible to enjoy your life. I spent a long time being depressed, suicidal, self-hating and body hating. It robbed me of the pleasures of the everyday. Making choices and taking risks to be my authentic self has saved my life.
Inspired to create a series about self love by the People Magazine series "Half Their Size," the Half The Self Hate series is about how artists and activists have put into practice the radical act of loving oneself in a society that commodifies self hatred. This is a series about self love triumphing over self hate, and valuing yourself as a radical act of resistance.
Gender Outlaw and legend Kate Bornstein joins the conversation about learning to let go of self-hate:
"I don’t have to follow anyone else’s rules about gender and sexuality—rather, I can explore the non-binaries of me. The struggle? I’m a double Pisces. I don’t struggle so much as I wriggle. I’m wriggling toward being the most fun me I can be. The challenges all seem to come down to someone else’s respectable rules, regulations, standards, and values. I’m wriggling away from all that, as best I can. "
I’ve been thinking a lot about the Facebook legal name policy lately. For those of you who haven’t heard, Facebook has been deleting accounts of people who don’t wish to use their legal name as their profile name. They’re coming for people, one by one, and telling them they either need to change their name to their legal name or convert their profile to a “page.” Pages don’t have the same kind of interactivity that a regular profile has.
This is very disturbing on a lot of levels. The first, is that primarily in this round, drag queens and gender variant folks seem to be targeted. They’re also on the forefront of the fight with Facebook to reverse their legal name policy.
What is baffling to me, is that Facebook is a platform that is reliant on users for content. It seems wildly inappropriate for them to be putting requirements on users to out themselves. If folks don’t feel safe using facebook they won’t have the kind of content they currently have. People who are using legal names would be more likely to curtail content.
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I seriously couldn't put it down! Nevada was the first work of fiction I've read in a long time that made me want to keep reading more than go out, which is saying a lot for an extrovert party girl like me. Conversely, once I got toward the end of the book I couldn't bear the thought of finishing it because I didn't want it to end, I just wanted to keep hanging out with weirdo, angsty, heart-wrenching main character Maria.
You can keep the learning going, single or while in relationships, with a cadre of lovers or while between regular bouts of getting banged. Doing the work of getting to know your body and getting to know yourself sexually is a gift you give yourself for the rest of your life. There are lots of different ways to learn about sex--there is so much knowledge available to willing explorers. Below are three body positive resources that will help you get in touch with your sexuality from a body positive perspective!
“I think the reason I trusted her was simply because I thought she was beautiful. I was too young and stupid to realize that being pretty did not make you anything more than pretty.”--Justin Vivian Bond,
- Tango: My Childhood, Backwards and in High Heels
Vivian doesn’t scrimp on sexuality, we are privy to a lot of physical exploration, which I think is really important reading for folks planning to or hoping to parent teenagers. I think anyone who had the experience of growing up an outsider will enjoy this book and any and all parents should have this as required reading whether they are ready to admit their kid is a weirdo or not.
Darlings, if one were to name this period in my artist's incubation (and I do feel as though this gorgeous queer Brooklyn artist community I live in is an incubator of sorts), I think this is the "Throw some glitter, make it rain" period. Thanks Ke$ha for that choice lyric. Also why are Ke$ha's songs so embarrassing? I feel a secret shame for enjoying them.
A couple of weeks ago, in the span of two days, I performed two acts that incorporated glitter rain. They were quite spectacular, actually. Glitter rain really does add that certain something that just reading a piece to an audience or just taking off your clothes to classic lesbian hits misses.
Anyway, I've been talking about my Lesbolesque act here on the blog for the last year or so, I thought I would get up a video of it. This is from the anniversary Rebel Cupcake party.