Maybe because my love life is in the crapper once again, all day I’ve been thinking about a moment I shared with a woman I dated briefly. I’d gone upstate to see her, and she was running the visit because being in charge was clearly the only way she felt comfortable.
It’s an aspect of queer life I don’t dig—the gender roles that can become more bald than in heterocontexts, though younger generations are loosening up those binaries. With my lipstick, big blond coiffure, and tight skirts, I present as femme, but only in that world. On the rare occasions I date cis-men, they often see me as more masculine than them. In terms of temperance, they are absolutely right.
Really, I’m only me in every context: someone who prizes freedom over security, who can change a tire and style anybody, who drives a stickshift, who is more than a little vain, who cries at the drop of a hat, who shies away from processing but says what needs to be said.
Anyway, this woman I was dating was butch but barely and that was fine with me. I liked her lush breasts beneath her suits and country-boy gear; her curly, silver-streaked bob. Maybe not so much the silver chain she wore at her neck but only because it was ugly, not because it was a feminine flourish. I have a very expansive and flexible definition of beauty, but find a lack of integrity in construction or presentation to be jarring. Continue Reading →