January 21, 2008

How Did You Know?

Posted in transgender, Video at 12:17 am by Michael


  1. Leslie Evans said,

    I like the video a lot. Well done, you.

  2. Karin said,

    I think the video blogs would work really well for you too. I use Twango for photo sharing and embedding in my blog. They have a cool widget that allows you to post your webcam video on your blog and others can respond with their own video posts right on the same page. See a demo here http://blog.twango.com/twango/2007/02/introducing_the.html (Twango is awesome – founded by a few ex-Microsofties.)

    Although I don’t know you Megan, I love your blog and am grateful that you’re willing to share your transformation. I look forward to seeing who you will eventually become. I hope you decide to remain somewhere in the whitespace between the checky boxes. Binary is boring. I think you are wonderful just the way you are.

    Why does our culture only have 2 basic genders? I spent some time in the Pacific Islands, where a third gender is pretty common place and accepted. The fa’afafine (or fafafine) in Samoa, for example, are boys dressed and raised as girls in a culturally accepted, if not celebrated way. In some cases the boys showed feminine traits from early boyhood and took to the fa’afafine lifestyle happily, and in other cases boys seemed to be pushed into it due to a shortage of girls in the family. (From what I saw, they seemed less happy with the role as they grew older and I don’t know if they all keep it up past adolescence in modern society.) This has been going on for a long time, in spite of the missionaries who usually knock that sort of thing on its ear.

    Grown fa’afafine are as individualistic as other genders. Some are very feminine and wear dresses and makeup, while others wear men’s clothes, but are still feminine and different than “men.” They’re just themselves, anything goes. They’re in the whitespace.

    Megan>> We saw an interesting NatGeo special “Taboo” that talked about Fa’afafine as well. India has a similar concept (Hajira?)

    Anh and I were discussing this morning during our run. Are there four “poles” for gender – male presenting male, male presenting female (fafafine, hajira), female presenting male, and female presenting female?

    (I’d suggest that female presenting male is a pretty “common” pole, and at least in the US, not that far from an accepted social norm).

    (Also note, I’m not conflating attraction with presentation – those are different too!)

    I’m not saying that these are buckets, but “strange attractors” in a fractal sense… I think its all a continuum anyway….

    It used to be that race was a checky box on your driver’s license (and it still is on the census – although they added “mixed”).

    Imagine a time when “gender” wasn’t there either… would it matter?

  3. M.A. Pomputius said,

    So this time I’ll be a bit more intelligent and helpful, I hope. I really enjoyed watching your video — you speak so well, and without any distracting mannerisms of speech or body. The sincerity and openness that characterize your written entries comes through equally well here — maybe even better, since it takes a lot more writing to get that attitude across — so much easier with a tone of voice or a shrug or whatever. The one thing that’s different is that it’s much much harder to be funny in person than “on paper,” so your sense of humor doesn’t come out the way it does when you are writing.

    On balance, I think I like your written entries better, but a sprinkling of videos is fun and interesting.

  4. Brian Page said,

    I stumbled across you while looking for information on Fafafines. I recently met a Fafafine from Samoa here in Sydney and we became instant friends. I’m very straight but have a deep respect for all people regardless of race gender etc.

    Now I’m an old fart who still thinks he’s 20 something but one thing about getting old (probably the only good thing) is that you realize as the years go by that there is more to life than you and who you may be as a person.

    While I consider myself important (and so I should) my life has never had the experience of feeling anything else but normal. I am just so glad that now people like yourself live in a world that is becoming more educated about everything and everyone.

    If uou are half the person of my new Fafafine friend then I think all those that cross your path will be all the better for the experience.

    Last bu by no means least my life has taught me to never give up & and always give in to who you really are.

    Shine you’re light!

    Brian Page

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