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Contact Mizeta at mizetasworld@live.com, or Howard at fhschneider@comcast.net

Shaved Legs And All - Bullies

There was a bully in our neighborhood who pounded on every kid at one time or another. I suppose there’s someone like Frank Scott in every group. Physically developed beyond their peers and flexing muscle the rest have yet to develop. Running rampant and practicing subjugation by threat of further violence and bloodshed. But not all bullies have testicles. There are plenty of female bullies in search of victims. They tend to use put-downs, criticism, and lack of resistance as weapons. The desire to keep the peace can allow their behavior to go unchecked by people avoiding confrontation or excusing their rudeness out of dogooderism. That “she means well. I’m sure she didn’t hurt your feelings on purpose” mentality. That form of violence bruises the psyche of its targets rather than their bodies.

Frank Scott used to beat me up on a weekly basis. I survived his drubbings with lots of fat lips and a few black eyes. Fortunately, I didn’t have to spit any teeth on the ground. I finally knocked him down one day by being agile and sneaky. After he was on the ground I sat on his chest and pounded away. I never wanted to hurt him or anyone, but was forced to retaliate due to constant harassment. After that, he left me alone. He found other victims and stepped out of my life. There would be plenty of others wanting to hurt me because I was a girly-boy, but indicting them is not the point of this missive. The point is that we need to stop allowing bullies to run over us. We need to take a stand and say we will no longer accept demeaning statements or derogatory remarks delivered with mean-spirited intent. Flipping friends crap and fun-filled trash-talking are common practices, but some people inflict wounds instead of creating humor. They never say the words “I’m sorry,” and feel justified in their lack of concern for the feelings of others. They place themselves in a blameless category and consider the rest of us unworthy. Yes, I’m an emotional, tear-soaked dishrag that gives a shit. Is that such a bad thing?

Recently, I’ve made myself unpopular by taking a stand against bullying and all forms of disparagement. I’m tired of being told I suck. Tired of trying to meet other people’s requirements for friendship.  I’m sick of other people’s rage and their need to obviate others in order to fulfill their personal agenda. If you don’t like me, fine, I’m totally okay with that. If I’m stupid, don’t talk to me. All I want is to free my headspace from negativity. To sit in my dullness and ponder what tickles my fancy.

Nobody is better than anybody. I get that, but it doesn’t mean we can all be warm and fuzzy friends. There might always be conflict in the world because we are all competing to survive. To fill our bellies and take the next gasp of air. But if we could work as a team everyone could have a piece of the pie. Constantly denying one for the sake of the other could ultimately lead to our demise as a species. We can be replaced and life will continue without us. We are not necessary. Many others life forms have been eliminated and the process will continue. If we keep eradicating each other we will be forgotten as life builds newer models.

We could be supportive instead of bullying each other and make everyone’s existence easier. We’ll always be up against the planet and its contrariness, but why we need to hate and bully each other remains a mystery to me. Is it in our DNA? Is it learned behavior? All I know is that it sucks to constantly be picked on. Whether it’s for your skin color, height, mode of dress, or simply for your point of view, no one wants to be publicly humiliated. This is especially true when people you think of as friends delight in placing you at the bottom of the pecking order. For myself, my worth is unmeasurable by someone else’s scale. I refuse to accept being pushed around any longer. I hope that more of you will find the courage to walk away from dead-end situations that wither hope and destroy dreams. Changing where you hang or who you hang with seems daunting at first, but once freed, your mind will wonder why you suffered so long.

Be well my friends. The world is filled with hatred and bigotry, but you can make a difference. Look around. Smile. Enjoy being yourself, whomever that might be. We can’t stop haters from hating, but we can refuse tyranny. Rolling over is no longer an option. Speak up. Be loud and clear. Love may not win, but the battle is fully on. Mizeta.

Shaved Legs and All - Anarchy As a Way of Life


I try to avoid blanket indictments because there are always elements or people outside whatever boundaries I establish. That said, there are a lot of scofflaws out there who could care less about the safety and welfare of others. Anarchy exists on the roads and in line at the supermarket. Even while standing still one can be stepped on by someone refusing to share space. Polite people and courteous drivers are being run over by self-important, uncaring, insensitive humans prone to complain if the same behavior is applied to them. Everyone absolves themselves of rudeness and lays the blame on the other guy. I’ve never been a big law and order person, but can easily see how the Me First generation has destroyed any sense of civility in the world.

People looking at their phones walk into the street without glancing around. Drivers get thrown the finger because they had to brake hard to avoid a collision. When pedestrians get killed these days it is often their fault, but the vehicle operator has to prove lack of impairment and culpability. Crackheads attempt to burglarize homes and advocates for the downtrodden use guilt tactics to make sure that hard-working people get indicted for protecting property. We have become so adversarial in our pursuits there is no set of rules that can apply to all situations or circumstances.

A friend of mine just came back from Costa Rica. No weapons. No army. A relaxed and convivial experience where she felt safe at all times. She felt reluctant to return to the chaotic fray America’s every day has become. Giant crash on I-5. Murder at the transit station. Breaking news! Breaking news! The cry of a society unmindful of another’s right to exist and pursue similar goals.

I was walking towards the liquor store tonight and a heavily-muscled dude in a big wheel pickup truck stared at me hatefully as he drove by. I could tell he’d love to meet me in some dark place and kick my guts out. I just smiled and looked away. A few seconds can change the entire course of a life. Me in the hospital or grave. Him in prison or freed by some attorney opposed to weirdos of all types. By my not flipping him off, or being silly and blowing him a kiss, he was left to stew in his darkness and I got cocktail makings for an evening at home. I bought a new dress this week and sexy new shoes. What more does a girl need to be happy?

When it comes to those maniacs on the road, I obey the speed limit and don’t worry about how much I piss them off. I understand the lack of traffic enforcement in the face of greater crime, so they get away with sixty in a thirty-five zone after roaring past me. I’ve become a big advocate of camera vans and increased city revenue through citations. Maybe attacking pocketbooks is the only punishment people will respond to. That, or the loss of a loved one to someone texting. If someone calls while I’m driving, I pull over and answer, or ignore it till later. Maybe that makes me seem boring and old, but in truth, my fire still burns bright, bold and hot. I choose to apply it to things other than talking through someone who was sitting quietly at the counter until two babblers roosted on either side. I choose not to slam doors in people’s faces in order to gain some self-imagined advantage. Instead, I open the door and let others pass through first. Most times they wear different sizes or have different tastes than me anyway. Sometimes they require a different service and may end up in the long slow line while I achieve express status. Either way, others are here. I can be peeved by their presence or wait my turn. Protecting that place in line has to happen or I would be forever last. Meanwhile, my lilies are blooming. Everything in my yard is reaching for the sky. Days are awash with color. If your soul is still, no outside force can disrupt you. Stay true. Wear what you want. Be who you are. Never let hate rest in your heart. Mizeta   

Shaved Legs an All (Cross Dressing Made Easy) Acceleration

Sixty years ago I would have been beaten unmercifully for walking down the street wearing a dress, or thrown in prison and raped by other inmates for fun. These days, people in public service are mostly polite, but that doesn’t mean there’s not plenty of folks who’d love to rip my hide off. Political correctness and proper workplace behavior are presently big issues. Eighty years ago, feeding your family was as big a problem as it is today. The difference now is that since we don’t farm as much as we compute, we forget that without someone raising cows there is no milk. That somewhere someone is rising before dawn to feed our nation. That in another state someone is standing in the rain, trying to reconnect our Internet after a tree fell on a power line. We have begun to take things as givens and inviolate.

A hundred years ago, Oregon mostly had dirt and gravel roads. Indoor plumbing, electricity, automobiles, and telephones were still evolving. These days, we’re over-connected and densely packed. We throw each other the finger for having to wait an extra 3.02 seconds at a stop sign. Two hundred years ago we might have walked ten miles a day towards our destination after cutting through undergrowth and dealing with hostile forces. Everything moved in slow motion compared to how we live today, which poses the question of where do we go from here? What will life look like fifty or even a hundred years from now?

Lately, my major beef has been about the desire of fundamental groups to plunge us back into the moral dark ages and impede scientific evolution. Sure, we need to learn how to live without such privilege should our infrastructure fail or be destroyed, but those are practical physical concerns. Those unable to compete or find fraternity would perish, but that is common in nature. Where I diverge from such archaic thinking is that the acceleration of knowledge has revealed countless galaxies and scientific wonders debunking superstition. I find it hard to believe there are people who still think the world is flat and you can fall off the edge. Acceleration of mankind’s quest for greater understanding of itself and its surroundings have moved us beyond the need for believing in things we cannot touch or see. There are billions of stars out there. Is there a planet orbiting one of them where most of the people dress like me? If so, maybe there would be some killer deals on used dresses. What coin of exchange would we use? My mind ponders such things. Am I alone in wondering what is yet to be revealed? How big is big? How did it get so big? Was it always this way?  There seem to be more questions than answers.   

When we hovered in the dark and feared every sound there was a need for unseen protective gods. In the light we can easily see that fear evaporates in the presence of reason. I have accelerated to warp speed when it comes to accepting a rapidly changing world. I am ready for tomorrow, leaving yesterday behind, but never lose sight of the fact we are immersed in today. I have a friend whose favorite saying seems to be “keep up.” I try my best to do so.   Mizeta

Shaved Legs and All (Cross Dressing Made Easy) Network Cooperation


In the fifties, game shows could not have shown same-sex couples on television, let alone hand them thousands of dollars-worth of prizes. It took nearly half a century for men or women to give a shout out to their gay or lesbian husband/wife/partner while spinning the wheel on The Price Is Right or competing for appliances and vacations on Let’s Make A Deal. Ellen would have been censored for decades. Roseanne would have been stoned in the street. Tutti-fruity spokesmen would have been laughed out of town by paunch-bellied macho men and their complacent wives.

So … what has changed? Same-sex couples are nothing new under the sun. Homosexuality has been practiced in every culture since the beginning of time.  What’s changed is that network executives, celebrities and the culture they serve have grown tired of being oppressed. Homophobes and their ilk are being rapidly outnumbered by sensitive beings who want everyone to express their individuality. Despite opposition, those in charge of entertaining the masses have chosen to accept and cater to the will of an emerging majority. After centuries of censure, the true nature of humans is being revealed.

We are all part of nature’s duality. No one is all of this and none of that. Movies, television and literature are becoming more aware of humanity’s diversity and are no longer catering to a specific mindset, philosophy and behavioral regimentation. Everything goes, as the saying goes. Nothing is off-limits these days despite continued resistance from extremists trying to hold back the tide of change. Old concepts and beliefs have been proven untrue. Xenophobes, bigots, and zealots will eventually be replaced by a newly-awakened youth movement. Where we were teetering on the precipice of ignorance and stubborn resistance to evolution, there is now a re-energized sense of belonging and empowerment among young minds. It is my hope they will continue to seek seats of power and restore a sense of dignity to the human race. That they will legislate with all in mind. Not create laws barring lovers to wed for life. Not destroy the beauty of our planet in the quest for power and wealth.

I’m old and outdated. I get that. I’m not mega-savvy to the cyber world we’ve become. But, what I am is a soul. I am beautiful like everyone is in their own way. Not everyone will become a star, or the premise for a movie, but each of us is broadcasting their clip and hoping to be recognized. How many viewers one has is another matter altogether. Love to everyone forever. Mizeta     

Breasts in a Box


If I could restart my life like I can my computer, I would get breast implants at an early age. Now that I’m in my seventies, implants would be impractical for a number of reasons. For years I’ve made do with heavily padded bras or foam inserts, but they didn’t move in a way that seemed natural. So . . . enter Amazon Prime.

Doing a search for fake silicone breasts led me to a huge menu of sizes and textures at various price points. Voila! Since I don’t have a credit card, my friend who has a Prime account ordered my selection for me and I gave her the cash I’d scrounged up to give myself the look I’ve always desired. Due to the high-speed miracle of modern marketing, my breasts arrived a day and a half later.

Of course, all of my friends wanted to see them, so I carried the box around and let everyone feel them before going home and trying them on. What a transformation. Their movement as I walked around was amazing. The next time I went to my local pub for a cocktail there were lots of humor-filled comments. “Don’t poke my eye out with those things. Nice rack. Etc.” Since I laugh at myself all the time, it turned into an evening filled with hilarity.

It’s interesting how such little things can make a difference in our lives. The best gifts people give me, besides their friendship, are half-empty bottles of perfume they no longer wear or an outfit they think would look good on me. The fact they participate in my life choice without reservation is a treasure beyond compare. Now that I have my breasts in a box, I catch myself glancing in mirrors just to watch them wiggle as I move. Each evening I gently wash them in warm water and set them on a towel to dry. They crack me up each time I notice them looking up at me. I’ve talked to many women over the years who wished theirs were detachable as the weight leads to back trouble and dents in their shoulders. I understand that I’ve enjoyed the perks of living as a girl without the problems associated with actually being female. Because I’m tall and broad-shouldered the weight of my new friends riding on my chest doesn’t cause me discomfort.

This summer I’ll have to get away from the spaghetti strap dresses I usually wear and transition to outfits that will hide bra straps so I can continue to have fun with silicone. Anyway, I hope everyone out there finds ways to achieve their goals and fulfill their dreams. Having one of mine delivered in a box has kept me smiling all week. Love, Mizeta.     

Shaved Legs an All (Cross Dressing Made Easy) Walls


Hadrian’s Wall didn’t stop the collapse of the Roman Empire. In Berlin, people fled despite efforts to hold them in. Is it possible to build a wall high and long enough to deter migrations? People have set out to sea in rudimentary boats to relocate. They’ve marched long hours under horrific conditions to gain purchase in greener pastures. Building a twenty-billion-dollar wall is yet another delusion, an exercise in futility. There will be holes in it and ladders propped against it before it can ever be completed. Maybe a few contractors with inside connections will benefit. Maybe some temporary jobs will be created, but in the end, taxpayers will be left with a monument to stupidity.

What if we used twenty billion dollars to resurface pothole-riddled roads? What if it was invested in schools to provide better education and greater futures for our progeny? What if it was used for health care or feed undernourished children? To rebuild failing infrastructure and disaster relief. To provide mental health counseling for ex-soldiers who fought in pointless wars and now live in constant agony. To move the country forward instead of wallowing in bigotry and segregation.

Has no one learned from the past? Must we continue racism, sexism and xenophobia? What will it take for us to learn that we are all the same? That we bleed when injured. That we mourn the loss of loved ones. That bombing homes and destroying property only leads to further suffering. That we all have dreams that can be trampled by insensitive, greedy profiteers.

I hope that when people such as myself are deported we are sent to Milan or Paris where we can shop for fabulous clothes and shoes. Or a place where no one is concerned about gender identity. A place where we are judged by our actions and awareness of others rather than outward appearances and genetics. Where our ability to love and act humanely is more important than getting over on the other guy.

I know. You might think I’m a dreamer living in a fantasy. That the eat, or be eaten mentality of all living creatures will never change. In response to that, I point out the Star Trek concept. When there was enough to go around for everyone and there was no need to rob or go to war for acquisition, life on earth morphed into personal development instead of mere survival. We have the surplus and means to nurture everyone, but a greedy few sit on the thrones of power and pull the strings. Their unwillingness to share and constant aggrandizement has led the world to the brink of disastrous war. Movies about a post-apocalyptic society are one thing, but living it in real time would really suck.

All I want to do is wander around in my new dress enjoying a gorgeous sunset or birds singing in trees. I feel everyone has their definition of happiness and tranquility. I don’t begrudge anyone their pursuit of it until they try to wall me out or trample on my freedom. Building a wall only makes people want to assail it. Like a puzzle, they strive to find ways to solve and defeat it.

What say we quit walling each other out and find ways to work together? Build a better, cleaner world instead of discharging weaponry to boost the economy. What if there really were so much to go around no one need go hungry? I don’t know. Maybe we’d still kill each other out of boredom. I hope not. Otherwise, we are doomed to incessant self-conflagration. I want to believe we are on a journey to self-betterment and that our base nature can be induced to pursue loftier goals.


Stay true to yourself and don’t be afraid. I became fearless when I first walked down the street in a dress, wearing lipstick and carrying a purse. Others become fearless in other ways. As long as you’re not hurting anyone, please keep doing what you’re doing. Together we’ll find ways to jump over walls, no matter how high they’re raised. Mizeta       

Shaved Legs an All (Cross Dressing Made Easy) Next Generation

Christmas is always an awkward time for me. To start with, I don’t need an excuse to be good to my friends because I do that year-round. I try to tell people how much I appreciate them each and every day, and do whatever I can to put a smile on their face. Purchasing gifts and wrapping them in festive paper is unnecessary.

Everyone who knows me is aware of my opposition to organized religion for various reasons, but they also know about my willingness to not judge them for their beliefs. We love each other for our acts and inner qualities instead of tenets imposed by outside agencies. So, Christmas rolls around and the whole country goes into a Bing Crosby, blinking light, caroling sorta mode. People dream of white Christmas and overlook the traffic nightmare that scenario creates. All those insurance claims for damaged cars. Grandma slipping on ice and breaking a hip. Little Johnny drowning in a half-frozen pond, chasing a dog named Spot.

While my holiday dinner hosts (who are kind enough to invite me) pray over the food, I’m to be found elsewhere, thinking about my next story or watching football. Since the food is wonderful, I’m not shy when it comes to filling my plate once everyone digs in. We eat and laugh like families all over the world. The experience is always a gift within itself, but this year a pleasant surprise came my way and sparked hope for the future.

At a time when we are heavily divided along every socio-political and economic line, we often overlook the astuteness of children. Those who haven’t learned to hate or become bitter. I know I’m one of those guilty of accepting the presence of kids without truly connecting with them.

 So where am I going with this?

I received a gift from a young boy who was asked to choose someone outside the family to buy for. He wanted to buy me a dress, but his mom didn’t know my size so I got beautiful jewelry instead. BUT!!! . . . That’s not the issue. The fact is . . . a young boy perceived that a dress would make me happy. He had no concern for social mores and taboos, wanting nothing more than to make me smile. He was capable of seeing me as a human and liking me for that.

What that said to me is that kindness will never die while mankind exists. That no matter what misfortune or tyranny we face, when we are huddled against a storm in the black of night, someone will be willing to share their warmth. That appearance is secondary to heart radiations. That without realizing it, I had gained a friend. It reminded me that innocence lost is a painful process where we learn indelible lessons about man’s inhumanity to man. It focused my mind on how easy it is to ignore each other. How easy it is to tread heavily in the world and squash what could have been glorious. Every time I wear my gift I will remind myself there is always someone who cares. That hope really is eternal and our light cannot be quelled. That the next generation has a greater chance of getting it right by studying our failures, And in the years to come, I should try harder to love everyone whose path I cross. Mizeta   




Shaved Legs an All (Cross Dressing Made Easy): Pendulum

It was wonderful to see the diversity among elected officials during recent balloting. Transgender, Sikh, black, lesbian, etc. On local levels things seem to be swinging away from extremism, but I fear the agenda of religion dictating law has increased its momentum in our seat of government. Constantly trying to legislate our behavior, dictate our movements and rights based on fundamentalism that will take us back centuries. That said, I would like to address an issue that might seem separate, but isn’t. It is the other hand sweeping us into Orwell’s nightmare.

Taking away Internet neutrality will stifle freedom of speech. People who speak their minds on social networks will see messages on their screens. ACCESS DENIED. POST DELETED. Soon one can only watch approved movies, read only family friendly, non-inflammatory literature, only see what you’re allowed to see. The argument that investors are not investing due to lack of controls is pure bull. The giants want to push the little guys out and gouge consumers who have no other choice than to use their services.

One might be seeking information about a subject that censors have blocked and see messages like INFORMATION UNAVAILABLE. It is yet another gimmick to program us into being obedient little users that ask no questions and become complacent with our meager share of the pie. Meanwhile, like in 1984, the elite have complete access, unrestricted travel and virtually no monitoring of their movements. We begin to believe, like those in Winston’s world that things have always been the way they are now. History gets edited and re-edited, until truth cannot be discerned from fiction.

Mom&Pop’s LGBT Bakery finds its ads are rejected by online hosts or they are charged outrageous fees for lower case, nearly impossible to find placement. The corporate bakery gets tax reductions, subsidies, etc., and we all eat the same bread. And so it goes, up and down the line. A nation of merchants operating in an open market become factory workers and clerks for the already wealthy. Art becomes censored and schools only teach government approved courses.

Denying access to information will tighten the chokehold on personal freedom in ways from which we may never recover. We will be on camera everywhere, having to watch what we say or face imprisonment for conspiring. Conspiring about what? You might ask. Simply trying to speak our minds, read what we want, and dress however we choose. Just everyday stuff like that. Exposing ourselves to things other than what is chosen for us. Debating different sides of any subject without fear of retribution. Experiencing something other than someone else’s dream.

If and when the Fahrenheit 451era begins, all previous knowledge amassed by man will be lost unless we become like those in the story and each memorize a book. For the moment, I will keep spouting off what some consider paranoid lunacy. Others understand it is a sincere desire for acceptance and freedom for all. Mizeta        



Halloween has become my least favorite day of the year. People walk up to me and say, “Nice costume,” not knowing I wear dresses and nylons every day. Where some men use the occasion to express their inner girl, mine is on display every moment.

The few days after witching night are the worst. “Halloween is over,” is something I hear time and again. One of the writers in my writers group said something that hit the nail on the head. “Halloween is when we take off the mask we wear every day and put on the one that expresses who we really want to be.” My mask is off and has been for years. Sure, I put on makeup and wear a wig, but the image conveyed is the real me. At least I don’t do trash-drag to make fun of women once a year.

I have never suffered from the delusion that all women are perfect. They are as flawed as any human. The reason I’m on their side in most situations is that I understand the emotional nature directing many of their actions. Intellectually, they are absolutely equal to men, but caring and feeling make them more vulnerable. Combined with the fact most men are larger and more prone to violence, you have a recipe for exploitation, abuse and belittlement. Too many men are okay with being insensitive assholes from my point of view. I don’t mind that they think of me as a sissy. Even at my advanced age I can outwork lots of them. So can many women.

So . . . what am I saying? I’m saying that image is not necessarily an indicator of substance since many people live behind a false front. Just because you see a guy in a dress, you have no idea what the person on the inside feels or believes. I’m saying you have no right to abuse them physically or verbally. I’m saying that women and girly boys like me are sick of men thinking their puny little penis gives them the right to rule the world. That no one put them in charge of other people’s right to live. That using violence on anyone doesn’t make you a big stud. It makes you less of a man when you ignore the feelings of others in your quest for superiority. To me, the superior human is one who grasps the meaning of oneness. The concept that all lifeforms are but different components of the whole.

Yeah, yeah, I get it. I should just roll over and die. Get out of the way of those who consider my lifestyle null and void, immoral or irrelevant. But, have you ever considered the fact that people such as myself do not call for the erasure of anyone’s image, only certain behaviors? All we want is acceptance and equality. We keep saying, “it’s a big world and no one should hog it all.” Is there a chance anyone is listening?—Mizeta

Shaved Legs And All (Cross Dressing Made Easy): Challenges

How can one forge their own path when so much has transpired? Thousands of years gone by as humans climbed from primordial savagery to a different form of it. Still animals at heart, biting and scratching to survive, but a different landscape in the modern world.

Where once it took years, decades or centuries for change to occur, it now takes minutes. There is a constant barrage of information our predecessors could not access. Thousands of celebrities, dates and names to remember, where once there were few icons in any area of endeavor.

Go to the library and you’ll find millions of books on every subject using every word in every language. Go to the record store and find selections from so many genres one could never listen to them all. Go to the grocery store and ask yourself if you could ever taste everything on display.

Endless competition where we find the bar so high there are few capable of reaching it. Giant footsteps to follow. Ruts so deep it’s almost impossible to leave the beaten path. Every generation has its heroes and villains, every era its tragedies and triumphs. Barreling along like an express train, the sheer volume of modern life is daunting to comprehend.

Yet, at the root of it all is an individual. One lonely ant on the hill. One soul trying to find meaning and purpose. Wondering how they can shine in a world where everything seems to have been said and done.

What is it in some people that makes them run faster and jump higher than anyone before? How is it that genius is bestowed on one, when others suffer learning disabilities? A maze for some and simple steps for others. How do we discover which we are? The able, quick, and popular, or the lonely, lost and despondent.

Those answers only come as we live. As we express ourselves in this chaotic world. Who we love. What we build or damage. What we learn or ignore. Whether we have heart or are heartless. Whether we give as we consume. The worth of us is measured by our fellows. Our fellows say we had the sweetest voice, the strongest back, the kindest soul. The most beautiful garden or best tasting cuisine. Our fellows know we toiled late nights to write the stories of man or fitted steam pipes and built roads. That we carried boulders in hot sun or put out fires in blazing canyons. Striving to be the best we can at anything seems to be part of what we are. That so many fail is the tragedy.

Swept under the carpet, deemed not good enough and left to rot, we often founder. The challenge becomes living with ourselves and finding some form of happiness. That often becomes a pathway to drugs and self-abuse, wondering why we weren’t chosen for glory. When one realizes that every moment of every day is an opportunity to better oneself they leave misery behind. They step forward with greater effort to be more than they were the day before. Whether it’s being the best checker at the local market or the girl with a friendly smile at the donut shop, each of us can gain recognition for being a good person who did their best with skills given. The fact all are not bestowed with equal competence in every area lends itself to everyone serving a different function in life.

Old hacks like me sit around wishing they could write the next big story. But what if little stories that make people laugh, think or cry is an identity? What if that serves a purpose? What if the guy who repaired the zipper of your pants hadn’t been there? At that moment one little ant had a reason to exist. The main stage is crowded and may be hard to attain, but there are many corners in the world to fill. Smaller stages where one can star and be recognized. Deeds to be done. Quests to embark upon to infinite possibility. Wherever imagination exists one can learn to build a dream. Challenges are everywhere. How we deal with them a challenge itself.

I recently attended an event at the public library where people shared coming out stories and the challenges they faced in becoming who they are. Family relationships compromised or enhanced. Friendships disappearing or being formed. Listening to those people reminded me that even when bigots get elected by other bigots and seek to control our thoughts, lives and sexuality, they will never accomplish that goal. That the human spirit is capable of rising to any challenge of its freedom. That imprisonment, derision, execution or ostracism have never derailed the desire to attain equality. Seeing the rainbow flag hung on the wall was symbolic of the hard road still to be traveled when our government seeks to retard our personal growth and send us back into the stone-age. Despite dark clouds on the horizon, people smiled, sang and shared the moment, unmindful of haters. The current political climate may set up higher barricades to our expression of who we choose to be, but the pendulum will eventually swing in the other direction. Though I may not live long enough to see it come full circle, I will wear my heels and nylons proudly to the end, knowing there will always be another championing the cause.

Keep shining you fabulous person, and remind yourself not to make assumptions. I heard one transgendered person say they want everyone to get them the moment they enter the room, but their sexual inclinations, life goals and the measure of their heart can only be determined by interaction. Just because I wear a dress doesn’t mean I’m looking for a guy. I’m simply there because I am part of the movement seeking freedom of expression. I welcome questions, as they are the only way to understand anyone or anything. Something I look forward to is the day we don’t need to label ourselves with any acronym but HUMAN.


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