Posts Tagged ‘gender’

What’s it like?

February 8, 2012

What’s it like?

What’s it like to be beautiful?

What’s it like to be wanted?

What’s it like to be loved?

What’s it like to roll over in the morning and see someone next to you who cherishes you and accepts you, even though you look like hell and (s)he knows and has seen all your shortcomings?

What’s it like to have friends who actually call you and say “Hey, let’s do something”?

What’s it like to not worry about friends vanishing on you when their life turns fabulous or yours turns to shit?

What’s it like to have a regular job with a decent paycheck?

What’s it like to have a stellar resume and have an employer snap you up in less than a heartbeat?

What’s it like to have healthcare, so you don’t have to worry about being able to afford the simple luxury of taking care of yourself without falling into a financial hole from which you’ll never be able to climb out?

What’s it like to be able to live in a place surrounded by good, decent, nurturing people, without negative energy in every room?

What’s it like to have a car where you never have to worry about what’s gonna break down next?

What’s it like to be able to wake up in the morning and never have to think about money?

What’s it like to travel and dine where and whenever you please?

What’s it like to know that you’ve truly accomplished something, or know you’ve made a difference in the world?

What’s it like to be happy?

What’s it like to never have to question whether you’re a man, a woman or just some mutant strain that’s both and neither?

What’s it like to not beat yourself up over every single mistake and misstep you’ve made in your life, or constantly wonder what you could have done differently?

What’s it like to wake up in the morning and just never, ever have to question whether life is really worth living?

What’s it like?

Inquiring minds like to know.

I’d like to know.

Adam Carolla’s career suicide

August 16, 2011

So Fran, how do you really feel?

I feel as if I didn’t need to wake up this morning to see this ignorance splashed in my face. Or any other morning.

My friend (and Fresno Pub Quiz co-quizmaster) Adam Wall posted this little bit of sweetness on his Facebook wall this morning: a piece about Adam Carolla going off on trans people on his podcast.

The news of this rolled out kinda slowly over the past few days — he spewed this on Thursday — which I guess says something about how many people listen to this podcast, from a guy who can’t find room for his shtick on terrestrial radio anymore. I didn’t even know Carolla still had a career, actually.

And his half-assed attempt at an apology? From the guy who claimed to be “No on H8” and then said, “a mom and a dad is better than two dads or two moms”? Puh-leeeeeeze. And if you listen closely, he wasn’t apologizing for actually saying what he did. And no matter how you dress it up, shit still smells like shit.

And unlike the morning-show idiots in Sacramento two years ago — who seemed especially remorseful and chastened after losing several major advertisers over their 33-minute rant against trans kids — Carolla, on first blush, doesn’t seem to get it.


Ask Aunt Fran: What did you know and when did you know it?

December 8, 2010

OK, it’s time for another question from the mental mailbag of Ask Aunt Fran, where you ask me questions about this crazy gender-transition trip and I try to answer them as best I can, sometimes long-windedly.

Anyway, if you have a question, don’t be shy. You can email me at (or my personal email if you know it).

And remember: I’m not a doctor. Or even a shrink. I’m just a girl trying to make a go of it in this great big crazy world, and my answers are based on my own experiences.

Here’s a question I get from time to time:

“So when did you know?”

Did you mean when did I know that that the Saints would win the Super Bowl? Or that the business I was in my whole life, newspapers, was going to self-destruct? Or that there weren’t WMDs in Iraq?

Of course, I know what you meant — just because I changed the gender on my driver’s license doesn’t mean I threw away my license to be a smartass …


Ask Aunt Fran: The plumbing

November 2, 2010

Well, the hits just keep on coming. Hence, the latest installment of Ask Aunt Fran, where I either demystify the transgender experience for you non-trans folks or just really confuse the hell out of you. (Hopefully the former.)

Anyway, if you have a question about this whole gender trip thang, email me at (or my personal email if you know it). All questions will be answered anonymously unless you want the exposure. And remember: I might be a firsthand expert, but I’m no shrink or doctor — all my answers are based on my personal experiences.

So here’s one I get a lot, especially when people first meet me and want to hear my life story (and here’s my gratuitous Monty Python line for the week: “Half a denari for me life story?”):

“So … are you planning on having the surgery?”

The surgery. Which only really means one thing, of course: altering the plumbing of my nether region to match the wiring in my brain. Or, to cut to the chase, so to speak: Am I gonna get it cut off?

An uncomfortable question in more ways than one, to be sure — downright painful — but one I can answer.


I met my old lover on the aisle last night …

September 5, 2010

Lead us not into temptation ...

You know, I get this whole long-winded post out of the way about how I’m starting to get my girlish figure after all these years, I’m losing all this weight, I’m riding my bike, I’m watching what I eat — I’m done with all the junk-food noshing …

And then it happens.

As if I need another test of faith at this point of my life.

Last Tuesday night, I needed to go out to WinCo to pick up my healthy breakfast stuff for the week: cereal, bananas, water, nonfat milk. I even made sure I went on a full stomach; a new Chinese buffet opened a quarter-mile from the store, on the way there, and I wanted to try their sushi rolls. OK; fine. No big deal. No temptations.

Until I was finished and making my way from the dairy section to the checkout.

One of the endcaps leapt out at me.

Potato chips.

No, not just any potato chips. Had they had they anything to do with Frito-Lay, the 8-million-pound gorilla of the junk-food world, I would’ve walked right past without a word.

No — they were a brand from back East that I never would have imagined showing up in a California store.

Herr’s Potato Chips, out of Pennsylvania, is a company known for its wide array of exotic-flavored chips, most prominently Heinz Ketchup. I’d bought them occasionally on infrequent trips to Pennsylvania, and once in a blue moon they’d show up in Connecticut, but not often enough to hook me.

And here, on an endcap in a store in the thick of California, were siren red bags of Herr’s Heinz-flavored chips. Which I was able to resist at first glance with just a raised eyebrow. But then the fatal blow: Next to them were bags of Herr’s Horseradish & Cheddar chips. I love horseradish, be it in traditional or wasabi forms. And on chips, to boot? Herr’s chips?

Wow. I felt my knees chopped out from beneath me.

And I found myself backsliding. Or did I?