Bevin's Blog I'm blogging the relentless pursuit of my joy

2010-01-18

FemmeCast Video Podcast Episode 2: Heather MacAllister’s Embodying Fat Liberation

I have switching the FemmeCast Video Podcast hosting to Blip.tv because you tube no longer allows videos longer than 10 minutes.

I really hope you’ll pull up a cupcake and cozy in for 13 minutes. Heather’s piece is very accessible, chronicles the history of the Fat Bottom Revue (the fat burlesque troupe she founded) and also speaks to the need to use the body in order to work against fat oppression.

“We will never have our freedom if we only live from the neck up, yet that is the way that many fat people live, even, or especially, the fat activists and academics among us… The oppression of anti-fat hatred is sited on the body, and it is in the body that these wounds can be healed.” —Heather MacAllister

On the video the piece is read by Kelli Dunham, butch comedien correspondent for FemmeCast.

You can read the piece in its entirety, as well as 50 other pieces in the Fat Studies Reader. You should try to get it at your local indie bookstore (and make sure they order an extra copy for their shelf). If you buy anything from Amazon through my links my website gets a small referral fee, which basically gets me more books and music. (I got a free copy of the next Femme Book Club book, Leather Daddy and the Femme thanks to my reader’s clicking generosity.

Heather continues to be a huge inspiration for me. I am working on an oral history project collecting people’s stories about Heather.*

I am also collecting a slide show of photos of her for the Heather MacAllister Memorial Community Lounge at Re/Dress NYC–please send any digital photos you have.

We will be having a naming ceremony for the lounge on Friday, February 12 at 9PM as part of the Glutton For Fatshion Zine** Release Party at Re/Dress NYC. It’s a free event!

*If you knew her, would you please get in touch with me?
**The Glutton For Fatshion Zine call for submissions is going on through January 22. Read it at the link and submit!

2010-01-17

The Winter Blah Blah Blahs

I have alluded subtly before that I suffer from the Seasonal Affective Disorder. It fucking sucks. I am a very logical person* and there are so many real things in life that bum me out, so it is made ever so worse to feel so very all alone, anxious and sad just because of my body’s reaction to the time of year.

Never one to suffer in silence or suffer without trying to do something about it, I have sought out a few remedies, both from my vast experience dealing with significantly terrible life altering changes and from my friends. Below I share them with you, cherished reader.

Most of these tips are good to use whenever life is getting you down, for many other reasons than just lack of light. They are also super low cost/free.

Tip One: When you feel like things are out of control, figure out what you can control and control the hell out of it.

A friend of mine told me this about two years ago and it works wonders when I am feeling anxious or worried, both of my own creation and because of external madness. Small ways I take control are to stop what I am doing and think about micro steps where I can get something small done immediately. “What do I have control over right this second? What can I do to exercise control?” Seeing progress, even a little bit, is really helpful.

Another way to establish control is on my environment. I am not a born-organized person. In fact, I am a bit of a “clean slob” (things are always clean, but I tend toward clutter strewn about). I am an avid follower of FLYLady, who teaches you how to get organized in baby steps–for free**. In just three days, 15 minutes at a time, I transformed my really messy and cluttered desk into a clean workspace.

I then proceeded to write a really amazing piece of art I had been procrastinating writing down for almost a decade.

When I am feeling ever so sad and I can’t motivate myself, I think in terms of just a few minutes, just fifteen minutes, whatever I can do to get something done. It really does make me feel better.

Tip Two: Live your life according to the quotes on your tea bags.

I got this tip from World Famous *BOB*. She was having a tough time and decided to do this for one week. Such small but magical quotes as:

“On with the dance, let joy be unconfined” -Mark Twain

“We do not remember days, we remember moments.” Cesare Pavese

And “A romance without friendship is like a mansion built upon the sand.” *BOB* credits this for asking out her current beau again. I’m happy to say they are still going strong.

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*BOB* enjoys a cupcake on the chaise at Re/Dress NYC.

There’s something to the generally benevolent and uplifting sentiments on the sides of those tea boxes and the little tags hanging out of coffee cups. They are meant to help you feel better about the world, and help you connect a little bit more with the world around you.

In my entire Lesbian Tea Basket I couldn’t find a single quote on a tea bag. I should stop buying my tea from Trader Joe’s.

Tip Three: Come up with a cutesy way to describe how you’re feeling.

Previously in this blog I presented Glenn Marla’s definition of Tragic versus Depressed. I have decided to call my Seasonal Depression the Winter Blah Blah Blahs. It’s just far more adorable and easier to combat when the scary monster is something you can change your relationship to by renaming it.

Glenn & Me at Heavy
Me and Glenn Marla at his performance series Heavy on Thursday night. He is wearing a glittery ascot. I am wearing a Looks Good From the Front hairpiece.

Tip Four: Get light anywhere you can.

What I did was to amp up the volume on my nail color. My day to day color is Fuschia. I think I made a big leap the time I decided to go for fuschia at the nail salon about two and a half years ago. I kept noticing that every time I looked at my nails I smiled. So I committed to it. I like the Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Xtreme Wear-fuchsia Power.

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It really doesn’t matter if your manicure is perfect or messy, the joy is all yours. That’s my niece Etta Pearl grabbing my finger when she was 30 days old. She’s almost one now!

Given my Winter Blah Blah Blahs, I decided to amp it up a little bit. I went to the nail salon for my $7 manicure and got day glo pink. It is insanely bright, and definitely doing its part to impart a little more light on the world.

Get creative and find something that you can make a little bit brighter!

Tip Five: Asking for help.

Asking for help is a skill. Vulnerability is a sign of strength. I’ve talked about this before. I asked for help and got a lot of really useful tips from my friends. A reminder from Golda at Body Love Wellness to take a walk everyday when the sun is at its highest. I try to walk 30 minutes a day, and instead of doing it at night with Macy I am doing my best to get out there at noon. It has made a huge difference. So has taking more Vitamin D and an emergen-c in the morning. My butch ironworker roommate is loaning me a UV lamp to bask under for additional help.

Its been about two weeks since I started getting really bluesy and I am feeling much much better. It takes a lot of diligence on my part, which sort of sucks, but anything worth doing is worth working for.

Happiness is always worth working for.
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*And a Capricorn with a Virgo Rising, if that kind of thing matters to you, which it does to me.
**I know a lot of queers who follow FLYLady and it really applies to all lifestyles, though at first glance it seems just for ladies with kids.

2009-12-11

The Queer Fat Femme Guide to Not Blaming it on the Fact That You Don’t Like Femmes

Backstage at Cupcake Cabaret, World Famous *BOB* told a story about how a (now former) beau had called her high maintenance.

“I called my drag mom and asked if she thought I was high maintenance. She said ‘Of course you are but you maintain yourself. You’re like a classic car, if someone is going to drive a 66 Caddy they will. If they want a Honda they should drive a Honda.'”
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World Famous *BOB*. Next Cupcake Cabaret is February 7, 2010! Photo by Syd London.
I agree with this statement wholeheartedly. It is so frustrating when people comment on how I am high maintenance.

Number One: Yes I am high maintenance, and take your value judgment off of that, it has nothing to do with you.

Number Two: I don’t expect my partners, lovers or anyone to bear the brunt of this and do any more for me than I would ask of a friend.

Number Three: I really hope that anyone who wanted to date me or be my friend would, in some way, be excited about the shows I put on, the art that I create and the other amazing whirlwinds that happen around me. Not to mention how fabulous I look while doing it. The most work that manifests for lovers of mine is a high impact social schedule and if I’m carrying more stuff than you I’d love it if you offered to help.

Number Four: I think everyone can be high maintenance in their own ways, and that’s not a bad thing. It’s just a matter of whether or not your maintenance is compatible with another person’s, really.

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I do admit to often running late but that has more to do with Farmville and my lack of time consciousness than how high maintenance I am.

In fact, as a woman with high self-esteem and a lot of confidence, I probably require a lot less emotional work and support than a typical partner.* I am really low maintenance in a lot of ways.

I also have news for you–Femme does not automatically equal high maintenance.** Most of the powerhouse Femmes I know are, in fact, pretty self-sustaining. The most high maintenance thing about going out with us is scheduling dates!

Dating situations have been broken off with me and many friends before because the person “Just doesn’t date Femmes”. Often this is accompanied by an explanation that Femme is high maintenance and they don’t have those kinds of resources to date a Femme.

Historically I’ve always accepted that, too. You can’t do anything about someone’s preference for or against Femmes. And I am certainly not going to argue myself into someone’s bed–I don’t chase once I get “No”. I gave that up many years ago. The “Yes, no, yes, no” game is something straight girls are taught to play and I don’t do that.

But frankly, “I don’t date Femmes” is a flimsy excuse and used far too often as something to hide behind when the true reason is something different.

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I love Cherry Poppins.

Formerly I understood “I don’t like Femmes” to be a preference, after dating for a few dates I never stopped to say “Wait a minute, why don’t you tell me what’s really going on?” When I sat back and looked at the situation I realized “I don’t like Femmes” was an excuse generally hiding emotional shit or other bars to dating that had nothing to do with my Femme identity.

If you have paid even a little bit of attention to this blog, you will know that Femme comes in a myriad of forms. Femme is fat, skinny, born boy, born girl, born whatever, wears high heels, wears stompy boots, wears flats, wears sneakers, wears boots at a construction site. Femme always wears make-up, Femme never wears make-up, Femme surprises you, Femme is emotionally giving, Femme is emotionally needy, Femme is emotionally stone, Femme is pretty middle of the road, actually but sometimes has the Seasonal Depression.***

You get it. Just like there is no one right way to BE Femme, I refuse to further support anyone’s blanket assertion that they “Don’t like Femmes”. I feel like I’ve met enough different kinds of Femmes that there for sure is a Femme out there who would fall under the realm of who you might be attracted to.

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Femmes at Femme Camp.

There are those who say “I just don’t do the Butch-Femme thing.” Oh honey, me neither. I can’t stand anything compulsory and if someone is doing chivalry out of a sense of role or antiquated obligation I can smell that shit a mile away. I like people who treat me right because they like to make other people feel good and they have good home training. Chivalry is not exclusive to boys or butches, I know plenty of chivalrous Femmes and friends who are sweet, caring and nurturing

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I don’t know a person more chivalrous than the very Femme Jessie Dress. She beats all at catering to my every desire before I even know I have it out of a genuine love for hospitality.

It’s not the 50s anymore. And while Butch/Femme couplings are, of course, alive and well, there is no one out there telling you how you have to be if you’re in a Butch/Femme partnership (and if there are, please direct them to me as I’d like to have a lively debate on my podcast).

Femme, for me, is stand alone. It does not rely on my partnership with anyone, butch, genderqueer, trans, whatever. Just as, I would hope, your identity doesn’t rely on who you happen to be fucking at that moment, too.

I date lots of different people and that occasionally includes Femmes. While it is true that I have a few “types” there are plenty of people I’ve been attracted to who meet the characteristics of what I am looking for and presented and were embodied in super different ways.

Also, just because you have a bad experience with one Femme does NOT mean the way she/he acted has anything to do with how another Femme will act in a relationship.

In sum, this is a call to those out there who are using the generalized “I don’t date Femmes” as an excuse for whatever is going on that makes you want to run away or never give Femmes a chance, here are some things to think about instead of blaming it on Femme:

1. If you’re not into someone, try just saying “I’m not feeling chemistry for you.”
2. If you’re not feeling emotionally available, try doing the work you need to do on you BEFORE you start dating.
3. Recognize that dating someone who is more like you (for example, when you are a genderqueer who only dates genderqueers) is sometimes a default to what is easy and familiar. A doppelbanger.
4. Femmes are not all “high maintenance” –I challenge you to redefine what you mean by “high maintenance” and put words to the ways in which you find someone’s relationship needs hard for you.

(Some of the above are direct responses to recent actual incidents in my Femme friends’ lives.)

And the following I say to everyone with all the gentle, loving, kindness, I-know-this-work-is-hard sweetness I can muster:

5. Think about the ways in which Femme phobia and anti-Femme bias in your attraction might have more to do with internalized misogyny, fear of loss of power, loss of visibility and other marginalization in the queer community versus just a “preference” as the CraigsListers likes to say.
6. Being queer is about having choices and having a non-default sexuality (as opposed to the heterosexual paradigm).
7. If you’ve never dated a Femme before, challenge yourself to look past your perception of anyone’s identity and onto their characteristics as a human, see if there’s some sort of road block in your attraction that manifests as Femme, fat, race, dis/ability, age, transition status or any other characteristic that might have more to do with your own unexamined bias.

Anyway, I’m not trying to sway the tide or anything. Some people really just aren’t into something/a gender presentation/body whatever, I get that. But having heard of so many people lately running into the “I’m not into Femmes” thing and also know plenty of primarily faggot identified butches/transmen dating Femmes that I see a disconnect. I want people to broaden their horizons, that’s the best part about being a queer!

This post is especially dedicated to the genderqueer friend of mine (who shall remain forever anonymous) who had dated other genderqueer and transguys exclusively for so long that they were intimidated by Femmes because of the bra situation.

*Of course, that always comes with the sweet side-effect of inspiring other people to “do the work” to get to my level of confidence and emotional maturity, which often means they are “not ready” to date me or whatever other euphemism for that I’ve gotten.
**Lest we forget that butches/boys/bois/men can often require just as much if not more preening and primping. My ex, a genderqueer named Seth, required 45 minutes after her shower start to finish on her hair and fashion for the day. She looked good, though, and I always appreciated it.
***If you’re still confused about what it means to be Femme, buy the Femme Family Coming Out Zine. It’s cheap and it supports the Femme Conference. It will also teach you a thing or 20 about Femmes. Promise.

2009-11-30

Bevin’s December Calendar!

Hello to you! I am performing and producing a bunch of really unique and fun shows this month! I am also celebrating my 31st birthday at the December 17th show (my actual birthday is Christmas Eve–Jesus has always made scheduling a party very challenging). So if you’re around please come! I would love to take a family photo with you in the queer family photo booth!!

If you cannot attend any of the events (especially my birthday/holiday show) for lack of funds, please let me know and I will help you out!!

Upcoming performances featuring Bevin Branlandingham!

Saturday, December 5, 2009 * New York, NY
Hyper Gender Burlesque!
Show at 10p, $10
59-61 E. 4th Street, buzz #6 and take the elevator to the 4th floor
Between Bowery and 2nd Ave in the Lower East Side
Train: F to 2nd Ave, N/R to 8th street or 6 to Astor Place
Bevin Branlandingham performs a piece in homage to Paula Deen (never before seen in NYC) in the Hyper Gender Burlesque Gluttony Show.
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Sunday, December 6, 2009 * Brooklyn, NY
BEVIN BRANLANDINGHAM PRESENTS!
Cupcake Cabaret NYC
doors at 8p, show at 8:30p, $10-$15 sliding scale (proceeds go to performers)
45 Berry st (corner of N 11th) L to Bedford or G to Nassau
Bevin Branlandingham femmecees and performs funny spoken word don’t miss an evening of celebrating our esteem through our differences!

World Famous *BOB*, Tano-rexic, Granny Chasing, F to F , Baby Woman [http://www.myspace.com/dreamcometruegirl]
Alysia Angel, Queer Fat Femme poet and storyteller from Olympia Washington [AlysiaAngel.blogspot.com]
Dave End, Meandering genderfabulous queer musician [http://www.myspace.com/daveend]
Miasia, World Class Queer Fat Femme Burlesque [Miasia.org]

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.

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Wednesday, December 9, 2009 * Brooklyn, NY
MAXI CRAFT! A Re/Dress NYC Community Craft Fair!
7pm-9pm * CASH ONLY!
Re/Dress: 109 Boerum Place www.redressnyc.com
Bevin Branlandingham, in her capacity as the reigning Miss Re/Dress, presents MAXI CRAFT: A Re/Dress Community Craft Fair. Enabling our crafty clientele to sell their wares to our holiday shoppers, this one night only affair will celebrate the handmade, unusual, radical and raucous. Including jewelry, scarves, hair bling, accessories, handmade cards, zines, chapbooks, art, coloring books, perfume oil, and more just in time for Holiday shopping. There will also be a brief reading from works available at the event and a short video presentation.

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Thursday, December 17, 2009 * New York City, NY
BEVIN BRANLANDINGHAM PRESENTS!
Queer Family Holiday Extravaganza & Glittery Dance Party!
doors at 9p, show at 10p, dancing and mingling ’til 1a! $5-$10 sliding scale (outrageous holiday outfits encouraged but not required)
The Historic Stonewall Inn, 53 Christopher St.
Bevin Branlandingham Femmecees w/a spectacular and hilarious gender bending cabaret filling our hearts with queer families of choice before some of us go back to families of origin.

Using the glitter of the holidays for our own queer devices, the show features drag, comedy & burlesque by a mostly Femme cast in the style of the Zombie Queer Cabaret and the Femme Family Coming Out Party.

PERFORMANCES BY:
Bevin & The Baconettes
AfroTitty, Devastating Burlesque
Tommy Torpedo & Trixi Vixxen, Drag act Formerly of Legendary Drag Troupe DKPDX
Black Amethyst, Queer Fat Femme Burlesqe
Lola Dean, Sultry Southern Fresh Bottom Burlesque
More TBA!

QUEER FAMILY PHOTO BOOTH by Bloodhound Photography.

SEXY CUPCAKES in honor of Bevin’s birthday by Bambi Galore!

DJ SHOMI NOISE!
Spinning 90s Slow Jams before the show and the best mix of danceable hits, hip-hop and homo hop in NYC after!

Bring cash for Merch after the show!
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Thursday, December 31, 2009 * Brooklyn, NY
Femme Family NYC New Year’s Eve Anniversary Party!
10pm * $10-$15 (fundraiser for Femme Conference) * BYOB
Re/Dress: 109 Boerum Place www.redressnyc.com

We’re celebrating the anniversary of the amazing Femme Family with a New Year’s Eve party. A great TBD DJ will spin dance music that will make you want to move. BYO Booze, we’ll have mixers and ice. Lounge space and hot go go dancers of all shapes and sizes. Dress is Fancy, however you self-determine that.

…stay tuned at queerfatfemme.com/calendar for more up to the minute calendar magic & gigs!!

2009-11-08

The Lily’s Revenge

Friday morning I awoke from a really intense nightmare. An ex lover of mine had revealed herself to be a serial killer and was in the process of herding together me and a group of girls to slaughter, aided by a celebrity I follow on Twitter. I don’t have creepy violent dreams very often, but mornings like those I am totally grateful to wake into the groggy paws of Macy.

macy

In sharp and magical contrast, I spent the latter portion of my day watching Taylor Mac’s The Lily’s Revenge. If I could choose a perpetual dreamscape to have every night, it would be this play.

The Lily’s Revenge is part Noh play, part verse play, part vaudevillian theatric, part installation, part puppet theatre, and part dance, in a site-specific extravaganza. Using flowers as a metaphor for queer (meaning different, not specifically gay) communities, Taylor Mac, with six collaborating directors and an ensemble of more than 40 performers and musicians, tells the tale of a flower’s quest to become a manin order to wed its beloved bride. As the flower’s journey unfolds, it finds itself at the center of a revolution of flowers intent on destroying their oppressor, The God of Nostalgia. A radical experiment in “genre-squishing,” The Lily’s Revenge is a multidisciplinary pastiche exploring themes of homogenization of city, culture, and community, marriage and gay marriage agendas, and the role of theatre as a catalyst for action.

From NY Theatre.com*

I had been hearing about it for months since my friend Glenn Marla plays a Poppy flower. I was hesitant to go because, you know, 5 hour theater commitment, $35 price tag. But that’s only $7 an hour and I knew it would be an experience if nothing else.

And it was! About 20 minutes into the first act I decided even if the play began to drag I would be entertained by the costumes alone. Designed by Machine Dazzle, almost every character was coated in glitter, shiny fabric and tulle, the stuff of my wildest drag costume imagination. The make-up, too, was mesmerizing and glitterific. I told World Famous *BOB* that I wanted to live inside her wig (a giant pink orb full of pink lilies and butterflies), she said there was a guest apartment in there just for me.

The point of this blog piece is to get you to go see the show if you are in New York City in the next two weeks, (and therefore the costumes and make-up should be left a delightful surprise) but in case you aren’t, check out this amazing gallery. Everything on that stage is stunning.

While the show is technically 5 hours, there are three recesses, where they encourage you not to use your cell phones and be present. There is so much to do and so much interaction! I loved this video monologue (performed by many actors dressed like Radical Faeries crossed with Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and sea creatures) that told Taylor’s story and gave a good background for the inception of the epic show.

There was a Discussion Disco in one of the cast’s dressing rooms where you could dance it out, chat with fellow audience members, get your make-up done, write your hopes and dreams on cocktail napkins. You could go into this place called Context Corner that had all of the source materials for the show, as well as a computer hooked up with the wiki for Lily’s Revenge**. That was my favorite, as I fell more and more in love with the show with each act, I wanted to find out how Taylor came up with it.

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Photos from the real time slide show in one of the interactive intermission experiences. The bottom one is Glenn and Heather.

The story is endearing and romantic. It’s the kind of thing that has gelled for me all of the notions of romance and dating that have been floating through my consciousness for the last couple of years, how important it is to love the self first, how necessary it is to not allow yourself to be boxed into the standard narrative–in the play, bride and groom. It hasn’t undone for me what the last 20 years of romantic comedies have created in my tender psyche, but it arms me with ideas of how to combat those notions of success being finding a mate.

It is also a powerful reminder about the joy and truth in staying present. Probably one of the things that is important in living a full life is creating a fulfilling “here and now”. Getting to know yourself well enough that you can figure out what makes you happy and having the guts to do it is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself.

I cried real tears several times, especially during the opening of the second act, when Taylor Mac sings a beautiful song on a ukulele. I hope one day there is a soundtrack.

Taylor Mac is beyond charismatic. I want to see everything he does on stage. There is an incredible boylesque number by James Tigger! Ferguson. And I had an immediate and enduring admiration and lust for Miss Bianca Leigh.

It gave me so much to think about as an event producer, performer and community organizer. I walked away with so much inspiration about what my shows can be and how I can interact with my audience and make my messages tangible. I am not a “theater” person by any means, but the friend who accompanied me is a playwright and said Taylor Mac broke every convention in the New York theater world. I was molested by a Sunflower.

You can buy tickets here. Experiencing this show is something I won’t soon forget.

*The entire review is worth reading, it tells the story of the experience of The Lily’s Revenge much better than I can.
**Also, if you are unable to go to this show, read through the wiki.

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2009-02-05

Outfit of the Opening Glam Slam

Dear Fatshionistas:

I haven’t posted an OOTD* in maybe three years? But the fatshion event I was at last night was so inspirational I really needed to share. So consider this a dispatch about outfits and shopping and food and fat community.

It was the Opening Night Glam Slam for Re/Dress, the Plus Size Vintage and Resale Boutique. (During my funemployment I am a shopgirl there.)

I Femmeceed the floor show (burlesque greats World Famous *BOB*, Dirty Martini and Della Dare as well as World Class Belly Dancer Miasia performed).

While the show was amazing, the fatshion was out of this world. It was really a night about celebrating fat community and fashion at its glittery and magical collision. My besties and I decided that since we are very dedicated to reclaiming the patriotic colors of red, white and blue (now with 20% less irony, as Tara has said about the new administration) and we’ve all bought dresses in that aesthetic from Re/Dress we thought we would totally go all quintuplet.**

This is all of us with Deb, the owner of Re/Dress and the best boss I’ve had. She said at the end of the show to the audience “This is my gift to you, and I love you.”


L-R: Deb, wearing a Garo Sparo custom made corset and jacket, and Size Queen clothing bustle skirt (the designer, Bertha Pearl, was in attendance).


Zoe, Tara, myself (Bevin) in vintage finds from Re/Dress.
Muse in Stop Staring Lucille Ball Sailor wife realness
Julia in a Re/Dress vintage cheerleader dress that she borrowed from the ever-expanding collection of Tara.

This is me and Tara doing the classic Fatshionista OOTD pose in the giant mirror. My knee socks are from Torrid and shoes are old school TUK Mary Janes. Tara’s boots are Duo boots.

And because no fatshion post is complete for me without a little food added in (these curves don’t fill out themselves, you know) The World Famous *BOB* doing food performance art on our pink chaise.

And Darlinda, Just Darlinda, enjoying the remainder of the Meat Platter***, catered by local restaurant Tini Wine Bar.

Here’s Tranny Superstar Glenn Marla, modeling a dress that is a stunning purple suede situation. There were only two of them made, one went to Whitney Huston and the second was a sample for The Forgotten Woman, which was a fancy upscale boutique on the Upper East Side of Manhattan that closed some time ago. It has now made its way into the Re/Dress collection.

He is accompanied by one of our fabulous go-go dancers, Mr. Kate.

And here are the go-go dancers in a row, Darlinda Just Darlinda, Taueret (another co-worker at Re/Dress and the recently appointed Madam of Ferocity of the NYC Femme Family) and Mr. Kate. If you’ve never been to an event with Fat go-go dancers you NEED to do this. It will rock your world in all the best ways.

This is Miasia performing in one of her custom made belly dancing costumes. I love them all, but there’s a special place in Mama’s heart for leopard print.

*BOB* performed a number she has done for seven years, a typical sort of bump and grind burlesque song overlayed with lots of hateful things people have actually said to her over the years. “Are those things real?” “If you lost ten pounds I would love to design clothes for you.” “You have such a pretty face, why do you look so hard?” “I f— you from behind so I don’t have to see your face.” Among others. She said this was the first time in all of the times she’s performed it where the audience actually booed and hissed at the fat hatred.

Anyway, Fatshionistas. I was very proud to be part of such an amazing community building event, celebrating a store I feel really excited to experience on the regular.

xoxox,

Bevin Branlandingham

*Outfit of the Day
**Also, given the limited nature of plus size retail, it is not uncommon for us to buy the same exact outfits because you know, there are only a few retailers that make certain aesthetics in our sizes. Twinsies is a fun side effect of being fat femme besties.
***My favorite quote from last night was from a journalism student live blogging the event. “So apparently Target has plus-size tights in bright colors. I learned this from a girl by the meat platter. She’s got some cool style. She was wearing a yellow cardigan and hot pink tights.”

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