23 May 2009


I'm totally convinced that men--most of them, anyway--like sweaty and somewhat grungy women. Why else do they watch me and yell, "Hey, babe," "Nice legs, honey, "Come to me, girl!" when I'm riding my bike. Especially when I've just pedalled a bunch of miles.

Oh well. So much for my brilliant observations about the gender in which I lived for the first 44 years of my life. I wonder if any of my notions about either sex will begin to change 45 days from now. If they do, will those changes be a result of the surgery or of the Colorado air and water? Oh my goddess: That sounds like a Coors Lite commercial. Brewed with pure Rocky Mountain water. Aged in the mile-high air. Or something like that.

As I recall, when I was drinking, Coors was not one of my beers of choice. Back in the days before domestic microbrewers, that first taste of Heineken would ruin you for drinking native concoctions. Oui, apres Heineken, la deluge. Now that's not a slogan that will ever be used. Well, in France, maybe. Or in Quebec or other Francophone lands. Anywhere else, I simply can't imagine a Dutch brewer using the language of Louis XIV in its adverts.

But after Heineken, I had my first girl. St. Pauli Girl, that is. (Remember that commercial? "You never forget your first girl.") Now that really spoiled me. So did Carlsberg, St. Sixtus Ale (I mean, what else do you expect Belgian Trappist monks to do but make great beer?) and others I might remember--if I wanted to.

This ramble got me to thinking about someone who was in one of the first support groups I attended. His nom de femme was Andi; as a man he was Andy. The reason I am referring to him as male is that somehow I never believed that he would actually live the rest of his life as a woman. Perhaps that is not fair of me; I'd like to find out where he is now and to see whether or not he's still with another member of that group--a transwoman named Alex who, en femme, looked rather like Drew Barrymore.

Andi, while not quite as pretty or passable, probably could have been made so. After all, if I can, anybody can. Right? But I still think of him as male, and probably always will, unless I see him again. On the other hand, Cori, whom I talked about a couple of days ago, is a woman in my memory. She talked with me about her "gender conflict" on the last night of her life; I have chosen to remember her as female, even though she had that "M" in the box of all her identifying documents and I never saw her en femme. And Toni, shortly before overdosing on sleeping pills, confessed to feeling jealous--to the point of denouncing me--when I began my transition because "You are doing what I always wanted to do." Well, I'm doing the reverse of it, anyway. In any event, I like to think of him as male simply because he didn't have the opportunity to live as one.

Anyway...How did I get from men who like sweaty women to beer to Andi. Well, the beer-to-Andy segue, I'll explain now. You see, he claimed that he couldn't drink as Andy, but he could as Andi. As Andy, he had to attend AA meetings and do other things to stop his drinking, which was, from his accounts, as compulsive as mine was. However, he claimed that as Andi, he could control his drinking.

Amazing, what changing a vowel at the end of one's name will do, isn't it?

I imagine that he must have been sweaty and grungy at least some of the time at work: He was a landscaper. I wonder whether his wife was sweaty and dirty when he got the urge to fuck her.

About the only thing I know about the wife is that she had their divorce papers delivered to our support group. As our group left the building (across the street from the LGBT Community Center in New York) in which we met, a car drove by and a passenger flung the rolled-up documents in Andi's direction. I must say: That guy had really good aim. The papers landed just inches from Andi's feet.

I also must say: He actually had nice legs. And his feet, which were even bigger than mine, actually looked nice in the high-heeled sandals he wore even though it was some time between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Not too many of us were sweaty or dirty that night.

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