Egg Nog Made With Romulan Ale

Happy Christmas Eve! Check out this amusing post from 2004 about the 10 Least Successful Christmas Specials. Here’s my favorite:

Ayn Rand’s A Selfish Christmas (1951)

In this hour-long radio drama, Santa struggles with the increasing demands of providing gifts for millions of spoiled, ungrateful brats across the world, until a single elf, in the engineering department of his workshop, convinces Santa to go on strike. The special ends with the entropic collapse of the civilization of takers and the spectacle of children trudging across the bitterly cold, dark tundra to offer Santa cash for his services, acknowledging at last that his genius makes the gifts — and therefore Christmas — possible. Prior to broadcast, Mutual Broadcast System executives raised objections to the radio play, noting that 56 minutes of the hour-long broadcast went to a philosophical manifesto by the elf and of the four remaining minutes, three went to a love scene between Santa and the cold, practical Mrs. Claus that was rendered into radio through the use of grunts and the shattering of several dozen whiskey tumblers. In later letters, Rand sneeringly described these executives as “anti-life.”

Libidinous Libido

It’s an ongoing bit of news: women who have no libidos, & how we must “fix” them (instead of, say, acknowledging that some people have little to no interest in sex). That we make a regular variation in libido abnormal & try to fix it is one thing, but when the pharmaceutical companies start looking for a cure…

The fact that so many women have a bitter-sweet relationship to Sex in the City, wishing they were a Samantha or a Carrie, yet feeling so sexually flat, may have less to do with a physiological problem than it does with their hard jobs, their demanding children, or their partner leaving dirty dishes in the sink.

Oh, right! Women & their pesky lives, and problems, and responsibilities. Nutty that should bother them or get in the way of their libidos.

Or, like I said, some people don’t have very high libidos. If it’s so hard for women to admit – who at least have some cultural “permission” not to be horndogs 24/7, I can’t even imagine how many men admit they’d rather live without (much) sex.

Third Gender: Bakla

From Wiki:

In the Philippines, a bakla is a male-bodied person who is exclusively attracted to men. Baklas are often considered a third gender, and most baklas display feminine mannerisms and dress as women. Some identify as women.

Baklas are socially and economically integrated into Filipino society, and are considered an important part of society. The stereotype of a bakla is a parlorista, a cross-dresser who works in a beauty salon. Some Filipinos disapprove of baklas, usually for religious reasons.

The term bakla is sometimes used in a derogatory sense to refer to any gay man. Baklas have largely embraced the term, however, and consider themselves different from gay men in other countries.

Internalizing Name Changes

As most of you know by now, I was not christened Helen Boyd; it is not my legal name, although Helen is my legal middle name. But I’ve come to be known as Helen Boyd, & so when I arrived at Lawrence to teach for only a term, in the winter of 2008, I didn’t think twice about people calling me Helen. I was just ending a year of book tour where being Helen was a normal state of affairs.

Since then, however, we seem to have moved to this Wisconsin town, and the people who met me as Helen still call me Helen, & they introduce me to their friends & fellow faculty as Helen. The name plate on my door says Helen Boyd Kramer. Sometimes, in places where I regularly present a credit card, say at my salon, it’s a little jarring to be called Gail, and even more jarring when one of my friends who calls me Helen is with me, and yet it’s still odd to me that I’m not Gail.

So I’m wondering, trans folk & others who have changed your names, when do you internalize a name change? I find I call myself Gail when I’m talking to myself (and I assume I am (1) not the only one who talks to myself, and (2) not the only one who uses a name when I do).

Then I wonder if it matters much, since my name change has nothing to do with gender.

Where I think it matters is how it intersects with other aspects me that go unrecognized here – like my history of heterosexuality, for starters, and sometimes even my trans-partnerness (since it’s not like we’re out as a trans couple when we talk to our dry cleaners, say).

Face in the Mirror

Just caught the tail end of a documentary called Face in the Mirror about David Reimer. Has anyone else seen this? I can’t seem to find any more info about it online. Now there’s one on about pumping parties called Lethal Beauty.