Sunday, 24 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive September 07, 2008, 08:41:53 PM

stone femme shoes archive
September 07, 2008, 08:41:53 PM

uh.....sitting at home contemplating 'the joy of airports' and staring at the contents of my suitcase - spilling out across the floor.

did i ever mention how much i HATE traveling? hmmm....so it goes, but yeah - whinge, moan, complain - even tho i haven't even left yet im already looking forward to getting home.  ::)

Beograd is one of those places that when i do get home, have the luxury of walking into my room and closing the door .....i sit down and go 'wow, *sigh* London is SO QUIET'

ive spent much of the day stuffing costumes, props, wigs, shoes, scripts, soundtracks into my bags and then wondering 'where the hell are my 'ordinary' clothes ???'

on the upside its rumored to be around 30 degrees and sunny in Beograd so YAY! SUMMER!

but uh - yeah an early morning flight  :( ain't looking forward to it, i feel LAZY, TIERD already - not the best stepping out mood for 3 weeks of working like a hell in crazy surroundings. 

days like today i have to give myself a GOOD HARD SLAP - cos i get to go and do what i LOVE, to be part of something really great. but yeah its been a BUSY year - this is my last big task and i sooooooo looking forward to being on the other side of it.

im hoping that as soon as i step out into the chaotic ZING that is Beograd that i will be back on track - up, and in a better mood....well hell, I BETTER BE!

Saturday, 23 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive September 03, 2008, 12:35:32 PM

stone femme shoes archive
September 03, 2008, 12:35:32 PM

Only a few more days before I fly to Serbia. :D

Im REALLY looking forward to seeing my friends, I miss them A LOT.
Im already nervous and dreading the volatile collective arguments…but as one of my friends said ‘best to accept that this will happen as a certainty and just know that…of course this always happens'. so yippee...more yelling.  ::)

Im still writing the scripts (or not writing as the case maybe) and im still short of a performer – but fuck it – I will do the bloody thing myself if I have to. dresses up in best 'gay man' drag

Slowly reaching that point where worry, stress, ....whatever....
– the craziness will take over and we will just be IN IT – DOING IT.

So much good stuff seems to be happening at the moment,
The Turkish group KAOS-GL publish a large article about us online this week with another version coming out in their hard copy magazine later this month.
…….maybe….just maybe...... we will take the ‘border fuckers’ cabaret to turkey!!!

For the festival itself im so happy with what we have put together,
Within our theme of ‘direct action’ we have our opening night cabaret, bands, parties…..but also a gathering of anti-fa groups from around the region with people attending from Russian, Belarus and turkey – its so fucking good to be able to invite people to come to the festival from places where Beograd looks luxurious and easy in comparison!

and host some closed “queers of colour’ meetings – one for Roma only, the other open to all queers of colour – its very good that we have an opportunity to provide space for this – issues of race are so often raised in queer spaces – yet so seldom really addressed.

Theres also the likelihood that there will be another small more ‘closed group’ talk for people wanting to come from wider Europe to explore surgery options for transition in Serbia.

In the four years we have been working together as a group we have come a LONG WAY.
I feel proud.


On the not so good side of things I got this information today


"darlings
yesterday m got a call from a journalist from the free daily newspaper, who was asking around about the festival.. and even though m explained that we do not communicate with media until after the festival, and that any articles could affect our own and participants safety, the stupid idiot published the text..
not only that - it was on the front page!

in short, the headline is: "The 5th clandestine gay festival from 18-21st September"
its not homophobic, but very much sensationalist and stupid.. they published our web site address and most of the info they took from the web site..
for now, we expect that tabloids also write about it in next days, so for now, we send emails to LGBT lists and individual activists not to respond to possible calls from media.

hopefully by next week it will be old news

does anyone have any more ideas on how to react on this?"


this is really the first time we have been 'outed' by the media - in the past we have worked very hard to keep things underground - to carefully choose our public moments so as not to set ourselves up for violence. its funny in a way because this year our confidence has grown so much that we are considering some more 'direct action' style public events.....
but where we get to plan properly in advance, organize so we come out on top.

so yeah...as ive said before the idea of fascists frightens me...but hell...thats life.

i guess i'd better pack practical shoes  ;)




Friday, 22 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive August 28, 2008, 09:41:29 PM

stone femme shoes archive
August 28, 2008, 09:41:29 PM

strangely........while spending a lot of time  working to have inclusive spaces, not nessecarily identifying with the label 'woman' and reading reading reading about 'post human' stuff i seem to have written a script that i can only describe as very 'second wave' ..uh weird

and theres the thing i have my roots in that sort of feminism, the eighties - yeah i was there - and women only spaces, the whole woman identified thing was pretty important to me at the time. altho it was also something that also sowed the roots of dissent for me. as much as i loved the feeling of safety i found in womens spaces i also found they excluded ME - because i was femme, because i had relationships with men, because i wasn't happy to live according to the sisterhood and all its very arbitrary rules. i dont want to live according to dogma.

when im in serbia i find i have even LESS visibility as a gender queer femme than i have in london. i spend loads of time outing myself to people and having to explain who i am just so i have some sort of context to live in. second wave is alive and kicking in that part of the world. many schisms have occured between our queer movement and the traditional feminists....but i have friends who i respect within that feminist movement and i want to maintain those links, not take part in a continual fragmenting of movements.

i value the work done by women who have that politics, the womens centres, the crisis lines, the shelters, the education programmes - so much pioneering work to be proud of!

the script i have just written is about womens stories during the war, (bosnia and kosovo) particularly the under stories of women exchanging information and building solidarity through the 'womens' practice of talking, maintaining communication. and my performer for this script is a women who works in the crisis centre that originally was so much a part of the anti war effort and worked to set up rape crisis centres in solidarity with bosnian women.

there are some points made about partriarchy and its part in wars.......

and always it is the difficulty of how to name real problems, real links between nationalism, patriarchy and militarism and how NOT to fall into the easy way of saying 'oh this is a mens issue'. because i also know that it is about a culture, a way of behaving, an indoctrination a nationalist war machine....that many people fought against.

so much of our focus as a collective in beograd is to build an open and inclusive space where we can ALL be together and have some NEW freedom to be ourselves.

how to acknowledge what exists, and yet to move forwards. most often it appears that in order to move forward we have to go back to the roots and pull all this mess apart, over and over again.

.....the other thing is i dont know how the hell to make this  funny, - yes i managed to make the story about the srebrenica massacre contain funny elements - but this - jesus - i just dont know. PHEW.........fucking politics aye. ::)


Thursday, 21 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive August 27, 2008, 02:02:23 PM

stone femme shoes archive
August 27, 2008, 02:02:23 PM

well this might all seem a little melodramatic - but what the fuck - its where im at.

eggshells......its only 2 weeks till i go to beograd and im starting to feel nervous...as if i am walking on eggshells

its always hard to tell what the situation will be in beograd but i am worried.
thats nothing new, the whole time ive been going there ive been scared, sometimes crazy scared - worried about walking in the streets - ruled by my own fears of 'what if'.
other times just scared in a more abstract sense, of what the fuck might be happening with the country and its politics this time.

so yeah the various worries i have had at one time or another: that some homophobe will beat me for being gay, that some homophobe will beat my lover for being gay, that we will fail to pass as a straight couple and be beaten for being gay, that tension between serbia and kosovo will spill over and another war will start, that anti western feeling will spill over and another war will start, that my friends will be hurt for any of those reasons, that my friends are stressed out for all of those reasons and i worry for their mental state, that my friends will be hurt because of the colour of their skin/nationality/accent...being different.

and i dont want to be a drama queen, yes there are worse places in the world, much more dangerous and risky situations - but this IS the one that i work in. i have chosen to be part of and keep working with 'queer beograd' collective in serbia. and as i said before - its so hard to tell what the situation will be.

believe me i LOVE the anti climax when there is NO violence...i have no problem with that aspect of a quiet life.

so for this particular festival one of the topics we approach is anti facism - following on from a bit of a falling out on an antifascist demo last year over the issue of homophobia - we have made it our focus to try and BUILD links with the antifascist movement, to strengthen that connection so we can stand together.

today a friend advised me that maybe we should not be publicising the topic 'antifascism' on our web site...as this might make us a target. this kind of stuff makes me feel sick - i want to carry on getting away with it, i DONT want to have a face to face confrontation with guys who are bigger than me, who want to beat me or destroy our gathering....that thought terrifies me.

i keep thinking of my friend who used to dream of fascists every night when the festival was happening. i dont want to be afraid, i dont know how not to be afraid.

and then on the other hand i have some other story going on - quite different, personal - but limiting in its own way. i have been having the hardest time motivating myself to write the shows for the opening night of our festival. procrastination - endless hours of NOT doing the thing that i love the most....
and as i look underneath this writers block i find my own self destruction - those horrible internal voices that tell me 'shut up you have nothing to say' or 'shut up everyone will hate what you have to say anyway' or 'dont bother, what you do means NOTHING'....and worst of all recognizing a part of myself that wants only my own destruction - the part of myself that cannot see that i have a right to be who i am, to carry on creating the person who i believe i am.

some how this external force and this internal force must balance and serve to work each other out. because surely i write and live the way i do as an act of survival, those fucking bastards/the haters who do not want my type of person to exist, in their own way serve to keep me alive...... because i am one of those people so self destructive that i need to fight an outside force to keep my feet on the planet.

so yes - just for today - i will win against fear......and i will carry on writing.


Wednesday, 20 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive August 19, 2008, 08:57:53 PM

stone femme shoes archive
August 19, 2008, 08:57:53 PM

hmmm....writing is not going very fast at the moment - well not the creative stuff anyway, tho yesterday i edited down a 8,000 word interveiw that tom cruise and i did for the turkish LGBT mag Kaos GL to just over 4,000 words so we can use it in the queer beograd book and picked the photos from transfab for the book. today i rewrote the intro for the section on trans stuff and also rewrote two short pieces describing the performances we do. *ahem* all of this while at 'the day job' YIKES ...no wonder i always look busy while at work.  :-\


and ive been thinking of the two particular people that refers to.....both of whom taught me so much about being a woman*.

that may seem strange but my family upbringing taught me a lot of weird things about being a girl...mostly stuff based on being dependent on some one else for income/safety/anything

.....so it wasnt until i met Crystal and Lucretia that i was introduced to the idea of behaving with FIERCE dignity, being unafraid and unashamed of my sexuality and getting out there and 'FLAUNTING IT GIRRRRL'

these girls were TOUGH, but in the way of having pride in who they were, carrying on being fabulous despite physical threats, verbal abuse, dirty looks, all the shit of being out in public in a small town....

Crystal especially always carried  herself like a queen - over 6' tall and at least 20 stone she was an imposing figure. i can still remember her oft repeated words 'honey, dont ever mess with a drag queen'  from her i learned to walk tall and if anyone had anything to say to me ...to turn and look them in the eye....

Lucretia was a slightly different kind of girl - i remember celebrating with her when late in life she decided to begin transition. sitting the kitchen table one day we were talking about learning to feel good about ourselves. of breaking the habit of low self esteem and not appreciating our own looks. i was talking about looking back at pictures of myself in my early 20's seeing that i was pretty! which was SO different from how i felt about myself at the time. she was talking about looking at pictures of herself as a young guy, thinking 'hmmm, not bad, i could fancy him' ...how we both never appreciated what we had at the time. from that point on i swore to always find some way to feel good about my looks....to stop listening to the mental shite that told me anything else.

i would sit with them as they sewed sequins and feathers onto elaborate costumes for hours at a time, we would do 'girly' stuff together, enjoying dressing up, being glam, from them i learned it was ok to be LOUDER and more full on....because growing up i had always been taught to tone it down.

we would talk about relationships, the pleasure and pain of romance....talking about men one time Lucretia said 'bloody hell sweets men.....to think i used to be one!'

one night when i was broken hearted after another disastrous romance i went to Lucretia for help.....and she did the greatest thing for me of all....she handed me a camera, a beautiful 6x4 meduim format SLR pentax. a talented photographer herself she knew that the best thing, the only thing she could really do for me was push me towards creating something for myself.

that night i went home and for the first time ever consciously dressed in drag...more make up that i would ever wear in public, an outfit that felt risque at the time, shiny gold shoes, my hair slicked down....the pictures were titled 'tonight i feel like a drag queen'.
thats when i began to be Femme.




*A term I have a complex relationship with.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive August 11, 2008, 08:11:58 PM

stone femme shoes archive
August 11, 2008, 08:11:58 PM

Today i booked my flight to Beograd....so in a few weeks i will be setting off again to Serbia for our little QueerBeograd festival.

in the meantime ive been starting work on a few of the things that need to be done -

every year we make a book that contains transcripts of the political discussions we hold as part of the festival. last year the panel discussion of sex work fell into a million confusing and horrible pieces midway through  :-\ it was one of those nightmare facilitation moments - i had stepped in at the last minute because the person supposed to be facilitating was ill.
i turned to the next speakers ....and through an interpreter asked 'so do you want to share your story' ....to which the person replied 'well actually we're not sex workers, perhaps there has been a mistake.

i have to say at that point the world kinda FROZE for me..... its the kind of fuck up that makes you want to just disappear through the floor but i had to think of something FAST just to get us through to the other side ...
it was very hard to tell what the situation was: perhaps the person who invited them to the panel had completely stuffed up, perhaps they had at the last minute decided they were not comfortable with being 'out' (the speaker prior to them had just been talking about how there are no sex workers speaking publically in serbia as advocates for workers rights because of issues with safety) perhaps we had been totally off the mark .......anyway it was BAD.

...some how in yet another disaster the sound technician didn't record the very fruitful - energetic - argumentative - debate that wound up the discussion....with some of the audience choosing to out themselves as sex workers and speaking very articulately on the political necessities and realities of sex worker rights.

and now im trying to stitch the whole debacle together into something readable that makes political sense! and doesn't make us look like complete and utter bastards.

*ponders, ponders some more* for the moment im drawing a blank on that one. ::)


im also starting to think about writing the shows/finding performers for our opening night.
im so happy that our berlin guy who came to transfabulous will join us in beograd and do his  show again. my friend in amsterdam will also come to beograd and and we are chatting about his long history as a no borders/human rights activist - tho i want to see him perform whatever we come up with in character as the handsome rockabilly gay boy he is.

i finally want to write a story that made a strong impression on me when i first went to beograd - of the cooperation between women in serbia and bosnia during the war.
while i was visiting the autonomous womens centre - a kind of crisis centre dealing with rape and domestic violence against women - one of the women there told me about how the first rape crisis centres were set up in bosnia with the help of  women in serbia. the women were only able to communicate over the phone. women in serbia  had been trained in workshops in amsterdam, and passed on their knowledge to the women in bosnia who were trying to deal with the many cases of rape resulting from the war. its such a beautiful and powerful story. and im pleased to have one of the women who works in the centre agree to perform the script...now i just have to write it.

funny how hard it is to start sometimes....i dont know what it is i wait for, im always a little tierd, anxious, afraid that the words wont do justice to the story, that it wont 'come'.
but yes how can i NOT tell such a story...its such a privilege.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive August 07, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
August 07, 2008



O.M.G.....

its happening, ive started to meet more gender queer femmes!!!!
i wrote in an earlier post about meeting some one and them saying 'before i met you i thought i was the only one' well now im meeting more and more people. its crazy cos it feels like we have all been having this similar experience of being who we are, kinda struggling with that, wondering if we are totally crazy but just doing it anyway...

and then oops - bump - 'hello! wow!...you're like me!!'.

it means so much to be able to say to another person 'yes i know what you are talking about' to recognize that look on another persons face when they talk about femme...the anticipation of pissed off or dismissive looks from other people.....except this time - its recognition, acceptance, interest and excitement!

PHEW

im still pinching myself wondering if this is real and ive made contact with something like a DOZEN femmes who are walking the wire, doing some pretty wild and different takes on gender ...this is like a dream...feels like the beggining of a very happy and FUCKED UP fairy story. YAY!!

Friday, 8 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive August 05, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
August 05, 2008

WOW......stockholm was AMAZING!!!!!

exhausting, crazy, emotional...but so much FUN. and part of what made it that way is because the gender queer playhouse crew are so good to each other - there doesn't seem to be much in the way of yelling, bitching or competition...unlike many back stages...on this tour everyone is polite, caring and supporting each other.

i like traveling with other people who know the way! it makes me less anxious about some how missing the flight/being abducted by aliens/being arrested for carrying an illegal quantities of hair products.

wednesday: so.......go into stockholm late afternoon after a hideous 5am start *shudder* went straight to a crew meeting to discuss the plan for the next few days - during which i mostly concentrated on staying in my chair and not toppling over sideways.
then went to rehearse for fridays show as miss dotty and i were trying out new material....which consisted of a lot of me saying 'so then i do this but with a LOT more energy...and i promise i will learn my lines by then'

thursday: morning crew meeting, then jog to our first talk...a short break in which i desperately try to learn my lines, then we jog to our next talk, then straight on to sound check. a short fight with the sound technician who suggests i am going to tape the radio mic to my face with a large piece of white sticking plaster - which makes me look like im posing for one of those gangster albums  ::) (well apart from the long blonde wig and the tonne of make up) -i refuse his suggestion......then totter off to hang around back stage (more desperate learning of lines) till its SHOW TIME.
i think we are all a bit nervous as to what the swedish audience will make of us, but they are fantastic - they laugh (in the right places), the applaud, they cheer.....and during the last show they cry!

friday: stagger painfully to the morning crew meeting, go and sit in on the first talk, jog to the next talk and do a quick dance rehearsal during sound check (the only dance rehearsal) - then adlib and bullshit our way through the show...which seems to go ok -
'sexual positions for a politically correct revolution' featuring indecency and violence ;D
some one mentions afterwards that they can feel the people next to them alternating between flinching and laughing.
then.....we run to sound check for the club night.........
where it seems our plans for the evening have gone a little awry as the club has a rule of 'no naked female nipples' (cue massive debate amoung the crew as to what constitutes a 'female' nipple) and no food to be eaten off skin. being the compliant, adult, non-rebellious people that we are we spend the rest of the sound check devising a short show that breaks these rules as many times and in as many different ways as possible!
so the whatever show is full of strap ons, bare flesh, NIPPLES of all genders taped and untaped, food substances on naked skin, whipped cream licked off of latex breasts.
..........goes down a storm with the crowd and i had a great time.

saturday its pride - and of course it pisses down with rain, still its nice to be part of such a big parade. then its the after party - just the crew and friends, im expecting a quiet one - but after so much tension, hard work and a lack of sleep everyone goes mad! after a particulary revolting story the entire room gets a fit of the gigles that has us all laughing and crying hysterically for about 15 minutes (no drugs involved) people keep walking into the room  - looking freaked out and leaving quickly, then there is the belly fight, people leaping bellies exposed across the room to collide mid jump and....fiercest of all...the femme arm wrestling competition - where the competitors have to arm wrestle and apply lipstick to their opponent at the same time.....i witnessed the co-chairs of FTM london in a terrible display of underhand fighting....the lowest move of all....smearing lipstick on your opponents glasses!

sunday....lots of bleak staggering around, buying emergency gifts at the airport, getting on a plane and staggering off the other side.

phew.....
so that was stockholm  ;D ;D ;D

im going to take a bit of time off this week, then its time to start writing and preparing to go to  beograd.  :P

Thursday, 7 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive July 28, 2008,


stone femme shoes archive
July 28, 2008,

Ive just snuck out from work for a few minutes to run through my lines as I have the usual pre-show terror - that I will somehow forget who I am/ fluff my lines/knacker my show.  But part from my usual HATRED of packing (suitcases) and getting up early to hang about in airports, im really excited about going to Stockholm. :D

I mean the idea is just so nice. Im used to travelling to places where I look over my shoulder for (insert disturbing factor here).fascists, secret police, not so secret DRUNK police, general homophobes, ordinary common or garden nationalists that sort of thing. So yeah SWEDEN.

YAY!!! We are doing the Gender Queer PlayHouse at europride, ;D
I like working with that crewits so much more relaxed and easier than any other group ive ever worked with. I wonder what the hell people will make of us in stockholm.

Meanwhile in Beograd plans are underway for our next festival  its only 6 weeks away.im half and half in my desire to get back to Serbia. I miss my friends, I miss the political work we do, im keen to get on with new shows, but its weird sometimes living with one foot in another country. Guess thats just the way it iscos short of getting rich (on what?) .i cant see any other way to do this.

Hmmmm, for some one who likes staying at home I sure do seem to get around a lot. ::)

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive July 17, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
July 17, 2008,

today has been such a nice day  :) , i haven't really got up as such - apart from going out to dinner late in the day. so its been the luxury of just hanging out, fooling around, talking, eating chocolate....

there is always the chance of weirdness tho even in the 'safety' of ones own home.......on one of my trips to the kitchen to make a cup of tea - wearing only a dressing gown and smug expression - i run into our house guest.

she strikes up a conversation.....'well...i was just wondering.....at some point, feel free to say no... if you could talk to me about 'transexualism'.

i reply ' um , yeah sure ...i guess so'

she continues: 'well yes i'd like to have a DEBATE with you, because i'm sure we have very different veiws'
me: a debate??
her: 'yes you see because i have a few issues with the whole thing because im looking at it from a feminist perspective'
me ' really? (laughs) on the grounds of feminism? thats  BIZZARE (another slightly maniacal laugh).

i quickly slope off back to my den of iniquity (other wise know as the bedroom)
and relay the conversation to the boy......

'its all that typical motherfucking shit about trans and feminism! I'M a fucking feminist for christs sake!! how the fuck are we supposed to deal with these people!?'

he mutters 'hmmm...yes second wave feminists'

we have a long conversation about HOW to approach this stuff with some one who thinks in such a different way/lives in a different world from us.....the odd FACT that even tho we are sharing the same house with this person for a few days we obviously live on different PLANETS.

laughing i say 'so i guess i shouldn't really mention the stuff about gender queer femme then'
mr boy " erm ..no..i think that might be too many steps down the track for her, start with the basics.'

i tell ya sometimes nipping out to get another biscuit to go with your cup of tea can be a health HAZARD!!!!

i'm semi looking forward to this 'debate', its been a while since i have been able to go savage with theory on anyone *evil grin*  ;D


Tuesday, 5 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive July 15, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
July 15, 2008

ive got another script cut up across my floor, shifting the bits around, ducking and diving with the sellotape, playing jig saw puzzles with a story.

i feel so GRACEFUL lately...and i dont mean im swanning around elegantly  - just i have a feeling of being part of some amazing process. lthe last few days after weeks of feeling shitty, exhausted and LOW, life has just picked me up and everything is feeling ALLRIGHT  ;D

so yeah - got a story on the floor and it always makes me happy to be writing. its such a mysterious process...i can never quite figure how listening to people, then sitting around and doing nothing (except waiting for my brain to figure it out) eventually results in a script getting spat out at the end of it.

ive been meditating for the first time in ages lately WOAW...craziness.
its turned into a wild journey - meeting my own death/my fear of death in a visualization.
its funny i never used to have a fear of death at all, ive spent so much of my life speeding towards it on a self destruct mission.
now that ive calmed down (yes this is the conservative reasonable me) ive figured out ive developed a fear of dying and also as im getting older! some grief around losing youth.
thats kinda cool tho....wow....like maybe i respect my life!

the other thing ive been bouncing around about this week is finding another gender queer femme. it happened so by chance - just one of those things that gets mentioned and i followed up on. sometimes with the whole gender thing i start to feel as if i don't exist, i meet so few other people who are like me or who will even believe or acknowledge my experience as being real.
sometimes i get the feeling that i dont have the strength just to be who i am ...i start thinking i should just TRY HARDER to fit in and be something people would understand.

so yeah.....this week i found some one who is femme and doesn't necessarily relate to defining herself as female  ;D ;D ;D just hearing that makes me so happy.....
i cant explain it...im just EXCITED about that...like some one else said 'its like finding another strange bird in the rain forest and being happy because then at least you know there is more than one'

life is good

yipeeee!!!  ;D


Monday, 4 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive July 09, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
July 09, 2008

GACK...... phew, im so tierd of saying 'im tierd' but yeah the deal with me and burn out, is that sooner or latter i just have to get back up and start working again.
as my dear friends and spiritual advisors miss crystal and miss lucretia always used to say 'girl, plenty of time for sleep when you are dead.'

***so yeah the gender queer playhouse crew set off for europride in sweden in just a couple of weeks....aaarrggh...yaaaay...aarrgh...yaaay.****


in the mean time i said i wanted to write some stuff about femme - so i will. tho this probably wont fit with anyone else's definition - but hell that AINT THE POINT.

not set in stone
.................................

over the years i've thought a lot about ways to feel RIGHT with myself and my body.
the closest descriptions i ever found that i could relate to (in emotional and physical  terms)were always about stone butches. (tho there were a few issues with dress sense)

lately ive found a few more people like me..... and i'd like to salute the wonderful femmes who said.

1. 'well honey exactly what part of the term 'cock identified femme' is it that you dont get'
2. 'oh thank god! i used to think i was the only one who felt this way and then i met you, btw have you tried testosterone?.'
3. 'yes well there are few of us who feel that the term 'woman' may not be inclusive enough'

*one a slightly different note*

the last year or so i've been thinking about stone.
its something ive been on a journey with, accepting that this is part of who i am.
What do I mean by stone? - untouchable, impenetrable, sometimes emotionally stone.

A lot of what Ive read about being stone seems to look at it as a 'problem' something that needs to be resolved or worked out….something that stems from a persons sense of insecurity either emotional or physical.

While I can certainly see that my coming to be stone had its roots in those things its not what it means for me now. being stone is a place of power, I feel strong as a stone top – it fits me well, its part of my identity.

ive realized how much of my sexual activity involves experiencing through what i make happen to other peoples bodies.  But at some point in the last year ive started to notice a desire to shift this, not all the time, but i wanted to feel less ambivalent about touch.... IF I CHOSE IT.

i keep hearing people say that sexuality and gender have nothing to do with each other....but for me this hasn't been so simple, because my sexuality and gender identity are so closely tied together. there is so much stuff that goes on in my mind that informs how i relate to my body/ and the way that i see my body affects how i relate to other people.

for me things are so intertwined that when i talk about my gender identity i have to talk about the things i do or dont like to do sexually....and thats where the hiccups have occured.

when one has had such a total and absolute physical boundary as being stone, well it guess a little tricky to negotiate. moving that one thing, even just a tiny bit and only within one relationship in my life has thrown up a whole lot of confusion!

im a stone femme top who most of the time doesnt have any relationship with thier cunt.
as far as im concerned it doesnt exist. i love my cock - which doesn't seem to visibly exist....
(and probably best not to mention it but im developing T-clit envy! *cough*)

just say i DID want to get fucked from time to time...then i HAVE to acknowledge my cunt exists. there are times when that has been really doing my head in.....that part of my body is  just NOT THERE...but thats pretty hard to keep believing if you are getting fucked.
(yes clearly there are of course other places to be fucked, but thats another chapter)

then within the experiment, the madness ramped to another level......because if i acknowledge i have a cunt.....then i started to worry ....is that diminishing my relationship with my COCK? is my cock any less real? is my lover still seeing and acknowledging my cock...am I still seeing and acknowledging my cock. *cue days of quite insane panic and packing*

PHEW.........so yes....its been interesting. and like all of those old school stone butches who for sure once in a while liked to get fucked i find it very hard to admit - cos im such a fucken macho dick head in high heels and lipstick.

then, always...theres a pattern....whenever i venture out of being stone a bit....it returns... the need, the utter relaxation, the naturalness of wanting to close my body to others, to be intact, complete to myself. maybe this year ive learned a little bit about being flexible, but i still LOVE being stone.

ah well what ever anyone makes of that...i dont believe that im the only one anymore.


Sunday, 3 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 29, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
June 29, 2008,

wooooo...just stepped back into the glitz and glamour- two and half foot square dressing room, shared by FOURTEEN performers that doubles as a store room for the kitchen-
that is SHOWBIZ.

did a short set at a charity fund raiser tonight.

ive been giving myself a bit of a hard time all weekend telling myself how 'lazy' and 'irresponsible' i am cos i chose to spend my time off doing acrobatics *cough* with xxx ...having FUN rather than learning my lines....yeah....time out is a bit of a weird one for me - i get so GUILTY - i swear i should have been raised catholic.

anyhow for the gig in preference to knowing the words, i chose the tactic of wearing an incredibly short skirt, a small truck load of make up and very glittery shoes and it all seemed to go ok. the heckler at the beginning of my set really helped me out by reviving my inner VICIOUS BITCH...and it seemed to flow on through the rest of the set just fine from there on. i may have been dressed like a cute little girl - but yes that WAS irony.

so ...a bit more cash raised for people living with HIV, and a bit more 'just getting out there and giving it a shot' for me.

weird weird weird point of the evening was arriving at the venue and finding loads of the other performers were high femme...like it was COOL and odd as i realiZed i hardly EVER have that experience of being surrounded by other bent grrrrls who look, talk and dress like me.

with this diary- now that the whole transfab show is over- i think i might spend a bit more time in here harping on about gender - how i feel about that stuff. cos im not just on this board as a 'transfriendly' person i have my own 'issues' around gender. so maybe ...just maybe i will put a bit of time into ranting about being a gender queer femme, stuff that i dont feel so sure about posting in the wider boards but for sure i think about A LOT.

will see how it goes. ... ;)

Friday, 1 July 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 23, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
June 23, 2008,

What goes up……..must come down

Phew, the last week I have had what probably qualifies as one of the worst cases of ‘top drop’ ever. After the Sunday night show at transfab ive been ILL, depressed…lying in bed a lot of the time and wondering what the hell to do with myself.

In some ways im glad ive been here before, ive worked on projects before where at the end of it its like falling off the edge of the earth. So ive been spending a fair bit of time thinking ‘what the hell am I going to do next’ and feeling EXHAUSTED.

Ive also been realizing how much of my life and time has been dedicated to this over the last couple of months, driving everyone around me MAD by endlessly talking scripts, visa requirements and funding applications.

But at the end of the day I can still look back at that night – how amazing it was to hear people on stage, how much I love the transfab audience, and how my best mate who I co presented the show with has said this was one of the best nights of their life.
I got a mail from one of the performers today saying how they are back at work in a human rights organization in Beograd – how some how everything is the same except they are ‘shiny happy’ because of this experience.

I keep looking at the pics and smiling cos I think we did something GRAND ;D

Thursday, 30 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 17, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
June 17, 2008,




im still alternating between tottering around the house, then falling over and sleeping a bit more. EXHAUSTED.

but i keep remembering the look on my crews faces when they heard the transfab audience, i loved listening to peoples performances lift in response to the energy that the crowd was giving them.  standing back stage during andjela and josephines performance i started to cry cos i know how fantastic they looked during rehearsals, how much it meant particularly to andjela to be doing this....and i was JUST SO HAPPY knowing that she was out there probably grinning her head off while dancing.

i think being at transfabulous has given all of us a store of energy, something that will help us to keep going -  this meant so much to the whole crew.....they were completely stunned by being so loved and supported.

amazing.

and im just so fucking pleased the whole thing came together....phew!

trying to just take it easy this week and slowly start working on the next project....so i dont fall off the planet.

I LOVE TRANSFABULOUS.

Trans Europe Express

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive Post by: Jason Elvis Barker on June 17, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
Post by: Jason Elvis Barker on June 17, 2008,


and of course, it was absolutely fucking wonderful.  I've had nothing but excellent feedback on the whole show.  Someone wrote saying that he would have cried his eyes out but the testosterone doesn't let him do that anymore. 

The hairs stand up on the back of my neck when I think of Sunday night. 

I thought Maja's show was outstanding, and D's of course.  Andjela and Josephine make me want to burst in two with pride when I think of them up there dancing.  And Milan was hilarious!  The whole thing was such an experience that I felt so lucky to have been there in the audience. 

I was so proud of everyone and also of Transfabulous.  I mean, when you are working on something and you are spending every evening hunched over a speadsheet wishing you weren't, it's easy to lose track of exactly why we do this stuff.  Sunday night was like "ahh.  THIS is what it's all about" 

Thank you again Jet for all your's and the rest of the gang's hard work.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 15, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
 June 15, 2008

aaarrrgggghhh

its today....that show thingy


yaaaaaarrrrggghhh!

im starting to be excited about being on stage - cos its reached that point of 'no return' where i can be as nervous as i like but i still have to get out there and pull the cat out of the bag (is that even a real expression?)

ive worked fucking hard
my crew have worked so damn hard, im really proud of them.

now just the sound,tech,lighting rehearsals (bleugh) and we are ON.

yargh.yargh.yargh.

EXCITED! ;D

Monday, 27 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 14, 2008


stone femme shoes archive
June 14, 2008

argh argh argh......

everything seems to be going ok, i keep having miss dotty check the lists of 'things to do' and wondering 'HELL...what have i forgotten' (nothing, i hope!)

yesterdays diva highlight was when my most interestingly emotionally adjusted performer turned to me and said ....'you know what, i've been looking at my costume, its arrived all fine and everything...but i was wondering...could it be ironed??' *at which point they gave ME a very meaningful stare* YEP they really expected me to iron thier clothes. crrrrrikey!!!
i had miss dotty take a note to receive a slap in their stead at a later date.

i am worried about my late arrival crew member tho...he came from beograd yesterday...but im really not sure if im going to be able to get this guy to the stage.
he is very shy and last night had tears in his eyes... telling me 'people don't want to hear this stuff...this is too much truth for people' - meaning - his story!   :(
its moments like these i see what an utter f*cking b*stard i am pushing people to get out on stage and show themselves in such a vulnerable way.  :-\  but yeah  i have rehearsals with him today and im going to push to make that happen. because i believe people DO want to hear each others stories...that we need each others stories.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 12, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
June 12, 2008


*still have the theme tune to hawaii 5-0 in my head*


phew.....10 hours of back to back reheasals and my head hurts.
everyone was so fantastic today...so why is it the one BITCH of a rehearsal that sticks in my head? seriously this person made me wish it was acceptable just to give them a good.hard.SLAP......it was a display of the most 'diva' like behavior that made me dream of using 'stingy' rather than 'thud' in encouraging a better attitude. .
grrrrr  >:(

ok...out.of.my.system now.......

wow TOMMORROW THE FESTIVAL STARTS woohooo....our last performer from serbia arrives ..... and i cant wait to see what the beograd crew make of the whole 'transfab' experience.

YIPEEE

i feel i may have to buy myself a particularly trashy pair of shoes to celebrate  ;D

Saturday, 25 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 11, 2008


stone femme shoes archive
June 11, 2008

yesterday most of the serbian crew arrived, picking them up from the airport was an emotional experience. ive been going to serbia for years, but somehow none of us ever thought we would be hanging out in london together, let alone doing the closing night show for a transgender festival!! craziness.

of course a visit to bar wotever is a MUST as part of the 'queer highlights of london' tour. as always it was lovely, lovely, lovely.....one thing i noticed was that A the transwoman in our group let her hair down...literally....i really think thats something to do with feeling comfortable and safe to present as she wants rather than playing it 'safe' with an ambiguous look.
the crew settled in and made themselves right at home...and of course everyone there made them feel super welcome...cos thats the sort of place BW is!
as we were leaving my best mate from beograd said to me...' i like this place, it has a COSY feel'

we start rehearsals today, i wonder if anyone has learned their lines? feeling much better (wouldnt exactly call it relaxed) now that my crew are here....they are so EXCITED...yesterday they took a short walk from bethnal green to bank! to 'just have a look around'. crikey..i would never do that so yeah im catching a bit of their enthusiasm and hell we have all done this stuff together before. except usually instead of doing a show for a bunch of lovely supportive queers we are usually working with hostile police, a crazily homophobic society and fascists....and our own belgrade lovely queers.

preshow-
*i have the soundtrack to 'hawaii 5-0' stuck in my head
*yesterday i almost had a heart attack cos i sent some one to pick up the berlin guy from the train station.....and he didnt arrive (*ahem* he isnt coming till today)
*i have a costume! um....well sort of...i have a sparkly bit of material and a heap of glittery things on a string lying in a heap on my bedroom floor...ive decided to attempt an 'IMPROVISATIONAL' sewing session....do i know how to sew?? HA! what has that got to do with anything!?

the show must go on!
 ;) ;D

Friday, 24 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 09, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
June 09, 2008

twitching

tierd tierd tierd

yesterday spent a lovely day with miss dotty acting as my able secretary.
taking notes, typing correspondence, creating worksheets for all the technical stuff, consulting on creative details and BEING THERE as a support.
PHEW....what would i do with out the wonderful people around me?? it makes so much difference!

both of us were so incredibly tierd that the day degenerated into crying hysterical laughter,
measuring another performer for their costume - converting cm into inches the conversation went something like this.

ok so thats... x cm......oh then thats 44 inches bitches *hysterical laughter*
....and the waist is... x cm.....so thats yes 33 inches bitches *more hysterical laughter, tears*.....with glaring from the person we are measuring
inside leg? x cm.....um yes that converts to 29 inches bitches *hysterical laughing, tears.*..and the plea 'girls please get some sleep!' from our victim
and around the arse?... xcm....yes its 39 1/2 inches bitches *complete hysyteria, gales of laughter*...grim sigh from the person being measured

yes i KNOW its NOT funny...but it just goes to show what kind of state we were in.

today miss dotty and i will go another round with performance admin and intrepid explorers that we are venture out onto the high st costume shopping!

tomorrow most of the performers arrive!!!!!!! 5 of my friends from serbia and the guy i have never met from berlin!!!! im hoping that once the people arrive i will start to get more excited....cos im hoping THEY will be happy and excited. i just SO MUCH want them to have a great time at transfabulous!

but im so damn nervous about EVERYTHING.

terror doesn't quite sum it up....at this point i cant even tell if i've made some tragic mistake and am about to present the worst show of my life... but then again the fact that im thinking this and contemplating what sort of horrible depressive decline i might plunge into after the show crashes, rolls five times and then bursts into flames...when everyone is talking about how BAD it was... shows that everything is COMPLETELY NORMAL. ::)

ah well things to do...........

Thursday, 23 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 03, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
June 03, 2008, 

Ive been struck lately by the weirdness of communication. My most frequent response to all current disasters, annoyance and swerves in ‘the plan’ is to say – ‘oh how interesting’

In my current zen/riding the wave/fiddling while rome burns state
I am engaging my ‘neutral observer’…either this means that im learning some more relaxed communication skills or ive just gone barking mad and plunged off into some sort of ‘sensitive new age/psychobable’ denial.

In the past (some would say not that long ago) ive had a tendency to be some what volatile – annoyed to YELL in less than 10 seconds… but when working with knicker all money and having good will as pretty much the only motivating factor for people to be involved – being an arrogant argumentative bastard is not the most productive option.

Latey I find myself looking back at past ‘disasters’ that are now ‘interesting stories’...breathing and figuring out ways to just get on with it! it seems a lot less important to tell people how annoyed/freaked out/stressed i am...and much more important to just experience it. *god this is soooooo going off into hippy territory*

so ive been remembering

-the late-night  preshow rehearsal where the performer decided literally at the 11th hour that she could only do the show in Serbian and I had to have the whole script translated –and try and figure out if the jokes made it across the language barrier.

- the show where the performer turned up after being on a train all night and kept falling into a narcoleptic daze during rehearsals, forgot their lines during the show and everyone loved it cos they were trying to figure out wether she was packing or not.

-The show in Belarus where we had already been raided by the secret police and did the show in a hallway of the hotel with an impromptu simultaneous translation into Russian because so many of the audience didn’t speak English.

Talking to a mentor recently I loved what she said….she had been moaning to her partner about the hell she was having with her cast/the venue/the everything....

…his reply was 'well if you hate it so much give up and come home…youre not in the bloody trenches!'

so true.

;D ;D ;D

expecting a return to normal levels of panic fairly soon

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 05, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
June 05, 2008

ive just watched the video clip to be used in one of the performances at Transfab. voice recordings of the two women who perform together, cut together over a black and white track of beograd street scenes.

...but as i listened to the stories of two people from totally different geographic locations, two people who have never met, speaking about growing up, experiencing confusion and distress over who they were, feeling isolation and self hatred, seeing themselves and their desires as impossible.....but then both finding a way to be who they are, transitioning, finding a 'chosen' family....i started getting all teary and emotional.  :'(

must say , ive had knicker all sleep and im always a bit EMO PLUS....but yeah peoples stories are the thing that will get me every time. i can never get over how amazing people are in the things they do, the way people follow what they MUST ....even when those choices and desires are so painfully different from what they are 'told' to be by the outside world. WOW.

now i just have to find a way to make this come across to the audience - some magic with lighting, staging, timing....because this basic material of the story that has been given to me is very beautiful.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 04, 2008


stone femme shoes archive
June 04, 2008

zen calm has now been replaced by BLIND PANIC

theres a certain kind of 'dont jinx me' voodoo to freaking out.
 ::) ;)

tho it may also be the idea of baby sitting the crew when they arrive that has brought this on. i AM tempted to take them to their first ever queer fuck club tho.!

Monday, 20 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive June 01, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
June 01, 2008

naked hysteria ;D

well despite the fact that my german performer doesn't seem to speak very good english, that my london performer is not returning phone calls or emails (where in the fuck is he??) and that it looks less than likely that the funding application that ate my brain will bring in any cash..i seem to have turned a corner.

yesterday, or the day before i started to just roll with it....I LOVE WHEN THIS HAPPENS... yep im still a bit anxious, still scared...but EXCITEMENT has taken over. now i feel as if im surfing, looking for the next wave, knowing that all manner of hell/chaos/swarms of locusts/tap dancing drag queens will break loose.....but WHAT THE HELL...its all part of the ride and im going to ENJOY it.

went to host a queer benefit party last night, it was a some how very london experience... ::) having got a text message from the organizer on the day of the gig letting me know where it was i rocked up at about 9 pm so as to have a bit of preparation time. and OH.MY.GOD...its a bad sign when the homeless guys walking past the venue warn you that its a derelict wreck!! after some one unlocks the door for me i walk through pitch darkness to a large room where people are sweeping up a litter of beer cans, the stage is several inches deep in water...and as i step through into the adjoining room i see why - most of the roof is missing and the floor is covered in huge shards of glass. i tip toe over this in my high heels and watch as some one sledge hammers a larger whole in the adjoining wall to fit the generator through - yes of course there is no electricity...also no water. when i find out there are no toilets for the evenings celebrations i bid the organizer a polite goodbye and LEAVE.

at home i ponder the joys of TEA and a comfortable bed....really i am too old and too sensible to be hanging around in dodgy squats till day break.

still enjoying the ride and adding a little more grease to the wheels  ;D ;D ;D

Sunday, 19 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 29, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
May 29, 2008,

today i have an odd sense of achievement or a sense of having achieved something odd...(ive been reading too much alice through the looking glass)

just sent the first draft of a script to a guy in berlin - he is coming to perform in the transfab show with the serbian crew. the weird thing is he and i have never met - we connected through a mutual friend when i was hunting for some one to play a particular part. so i have this mysterious activist/some time drag king...class politiks/against borders guy who i have heard is the best guy in the world!!! damn it i hope so!!

we have only communicated through email and his written english is not great....so its hard to gain a sense of how some one is...language .....damn it...why dont i speak serbia and german?

most of what we know about each other is the good reports of our shared friend. ive spent a lot of time begging her 'please tell him GOOD things about me!'

so im hoping ive guessed right about the way he sees his gender, ...because theres stuff in the script that talks about that and i dont want to come across as a bastard! and im also hoping that this balancing act will all be JUST FINE.

this is the weirdest long distance relationship ive ever had.

oh no actually the javanese skater punk anarchist guy who i also never met...THAT was the wierdest one.

and now ive got the soundtrack stuck in my head....... (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AofzLsvTsM0&feature=related)

Saturday, 18 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 29, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
May 29, 2008, 


i dont know how i survived work today....or how they survived me.

spent most of the day answering enquiries from the serbia crew - 'no we havent decided on the final music for that yet (and yes i still hate michael buble FFS),  that bio is too crazy, yes i really do want you to remove that section of the show, no  i havent finished the rewrite yet.' miraculously i wrote most of a script for the performer coming from berlin.... sometimes i swear i get more of my own work done during *ahem* working hours than when i am on my own time at home.... ::)
(yes i am a bad employee).

got sent a youtube link by some one who knows how i wrangle with body stuff...how to deal with the bits that are physically there that i dont like or dont believe really exist, how to get my head around the bits that i know exist but dont seem to be visibly there....cunt/cock/cunt/cock/cunt/cock...

so the video featured  julia serano talking about cock...she is so damn cool, totally refreshing to hear some one say so much 'forbidden' stuff. some of the time i felt myself cringing as there are part so f this that i go 'argh thats so american' but then in other parts i was thinking 'wow you are fucking amazing'

 (http://youtube.com/watch?v=a95JP8i8GuE&feature=related)


still have a script cut up in scripts across the living room floor, but hell today is a much better day.

Friday, 17 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 27, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
May 27, 2008,

F*CK IT

i think we just got turned down by the funding organization....except their wording was so wishy washy....'our freedom of movement at this time as far as funding is concerned is very limited' i cant really tell.

it makes me laugh when people use the phrase 'freedom of movement' and most likely they have EXACTLY that.... have ZERO idea of what it is like for people who deal with borders and visas everyday.

im pissed off....pissed off at the amount of time i spent jumping through beuracratic hoops, answering dumb questions and wracking my brains to explain what im doing in their terms..... when i could have been doing real work.

oh well theres a script cut up in strips on my floor that im trying to 'jig saw puzzle' together to make a workable piece out of. transfab have come up with the cash for visas, travel and accomodation for the crew from serbia so its still all on....but im damn frustrated about doing stuff on the lean side yet again.

fuck fuck fuck
 :-\

Thursday, 16 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 23, 2008


stone femme shoes archive
May 23, 2008

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
ok having calmed down significantly after the above outburst


today i was completely outraged when one of my performers suggested using a 'michael buble' song as the soundtrack for her piece. yes i admit 'outrage' is probably a rather strong response...but im premenstrual as hell and FFS MY MOTHER has a michael buble CD...she requested it as a christmas gift some years back (which i suppose is probably M.B's big market...mums xmas pressies) and she LOVES it..........me i made it through the first 15-20 seconds of the guy MURDERING Nina Simones beautiful 'feeling good' and then started hunting for a cigarrette lighter and a can of petrol.

so yes...its been a day of 'creative differences'.  perhaps one day i will be a calmer, more peaceful, 'zen' sort of person.......who knows  ::)

m i c h a e l    b u b l e ............seriously!!!

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 19, 2008 - on being a gender queer femme

stone femme shoes archive
May 19, 2008 - on being a gender queer femme


what a day.........

in some ways it has reminded me that when ever i think i am the only one, when ever i think i am isolated in my experience.... that can NEVER be true.

ive been struggling lately with issues around my gender and sexuality. lately a lot of stuff around being stone/how i experience my body/how i think of my gender/how this relates to my sexuality....have come to the fore. its been PAINFUL...a lot of old hurt has come to the surface.

often ive had the feeling of being unable to speak about it, i tell myself there is no place to be heard, no one who will understand what i say. but my experience of speaking those things is so different from what my head tells me.

i think of another gender queer femme i know - who said to me 'before i met you i thought i was the only one'....and the irony that today when all through the day i felt close to tears and broken - some one rang me to do an interview.....and asked me the question 'so how would you describe your gender'.

and of course i managed to give a good sound bite on how im a 'bio' girl, who i looks so passing but that NONE OF THAT means ANYTHING about how i feel about my gender.

i have to laugh


...and i just spent an hour talking to a friend and crying and crying and crying.

i might write some more about this stuff later.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 16, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
May 16, 2008

THE FINAL COUNTDOWN

...ok so that tacky title was probably influenced by the closeness of eurovision in belgrade next weekend. people might be interested to know that there has been a bit of a furor around the possibility of an 'influx' of gay people into the city to attend the event.

(and the possibility of fascists organizing to kick their arses)


also AAARGHHH...its only ONE MONTH to go till transfabulous and the show that the serbian crew  - QUEER BEOGRAD COLLECTIVE- are coming here to do. so yes im up to my knickers in work work work (that makes it sound vaguely fun)...which i guess it is...except i keep falling into panic over things that 'might go wrong' and just plain falling over...from exhaustion.

oh AND the queer beograd website  will be updated SOON with details of our own festival coming up in september...urm...that is..as soon as i write the stuff.  ::)

Monday, 13 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 14, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
May 14, 2008, 

DOG TIERD

back in london and juggling between the day job and getting the crew from beograd here for transfabulous.

the visa process is making me nervous...yesterday it took them and hour and a half to fill out the forms and then the appointment at the embassy is not until next week.
the stupid form contains this question 'Have you engaged in any other activities that might indicate that you may not be considered a person of good character?'  ::) seriously!

in the meantime i feel like there are a million and one things going on for me personally...ive tried to start writing about them to post in this thread but i seem to be swept up in scripts, work and more work.

REALLY EXCITED about the serbian crew making it here  yeeeeey!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, 12 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 10, 2008,

stone femme shoes archive
May 10, 2008,  

some of the post below refers to the queer sex club 'klub fukk' where I worked as a host for several years.



too weird, i cant believe ive been back in london only 3 days! it feels like a lifetime.
the first thing i think when i get back here is 'oh my god its sooooo quiet' - yeah im talking about london! but thats how it feels to me - looking out the window of my luxurious council estate flat .....well HELL its not too bad out there...very English country garden. (in a hackney style)

ive spent the last few days writing, fighting and having sex  ::) oh yeah welcome home. ;D

went to Klub Fukk last night...and this is the sort of space that my serbian friends would not believe. sometimes i find it a bit hard to believe! i grew up in a very 'sex negative' environment (who didnt). So theres something about this dingy room full of the weirdest mix of people...getting it on and getting it off that makes me smile. i NEED spaces like this.
yeah i work there....basically saying HI! behaving as disgracefully as possibly and marauding any one who dosnt understand the concept of 'personal space'. but i also see this as activism....sex is so important to who i am, its been a tough fight to get to the point of coming out as a raving queer femme dyke pervert so yeah sometimes the sight of people taking off their clothes, shagging up against walls and cruising each other SHAMELESSLY makes me go all squishy and emotional. is it just me or is there anyone else out there who just wants people to have great sex and feel GOOD about how sexy they are. cos ive had such a shit time with this myself i really really want other people to have the freedom that on a good day im bouncing with. body shame sexual guilt and fear are such head fuckers.
i guess im really one of those people who believes in putting the bedroom back into politics!


Saturday, 11 June 2016

stone femme shoes Archive May 05, 2008




http://de.indymedia.org/2005/05/117262.shtml
stone femme shoes Archive
May 05, 2008

funny sort of a day today, it started out with a general panic on my part about how much work there is to do - at the moment it feels like every task i do generates another five in its place.
but yeah after a day of 'looking after details' things seem a bit better.

first off we went to the British embassy to see about the visa applications for the crew. the public entrance part of the embassy was a WRECK, all of the windows have been smashed and are now protected by heavy iron grills - a result of the rioting in February when Kosovo declared independence. a lot of embassies were targeted at that time with the American and Slovenian embassy were both burned down. anyway the visa stuff for the UK seems less complicated than for most countries so we will keep our fingers crossed. then we went to book flights.
as soon as this stuff is sorted i will be sleeping a little better.

interestingly today we went and bought testosterone over the counter! the equivalent of sustanon 250 - just went into the pharmacy and said 'can i buy some testosterone' its about 1 euro per vial. i also spent some time discussing the costs/process of surgery here with friends who help people to find surgeons . it seem quite a lot cheaper than in the UK.

more conversations with people about their performances, script ideas, discussing stories and in the end i didn't get much writing done, but the whole thing is looking a lot more solid than it was when i got here. i suppose i have to start packing soon (on of my pet hates) as i fly back to London tomorrow. for some one who travels so much (or perhaps because of this) i have a pretty ambivalent relationship with travel...but then who the hell enjoys airports??

feeling very much in an in between place...in between countries, sets of friends, in the midst of this project which still has so much remaining to be done.  but yeah much more positive about being able to pull it off. tho im still aware that we have a long way to go and i need to put some serious consideration into how to stay SANE over the next month in the lead up to transfabulous! ha...im living my dreams...never quite figured how much hard work it would be. but yeah lifes ok today.

Friday, 10 June 2016

stone femme shoes Archive May 04, 2008

stone femme shoes
May 04, 2008

FLUFF ALERT ;)

yesterday after feeling so rubbish i decided it was time for some serious escapism!
so i went to the hairdresser and tried as hard as possible NOT to think about ANYTHING.

the place i go to is called 'pretty woman' honestly the binary gender divide operating in beograd has to be seen to be believed, the salon is full of woman having their having done in some sort of cross between farrah fawcett majors and claudia schiffer...flicks, ringlets, a lot of blow drying and PRODUCT...we are talking BIG HAIR and the entire time these women carry on yakking on their mobile phones even while having their hair washed.

so yes i go in deep...reading a womens magazines called 'scandal' and leafing through the books full of models with pissed off expressions and hair that explains why.

my hairdresser doesnt want to speak in english,  iv'e been coming to this place for a few years, she speaks english, but at the same time feels unconfident with that ...so we communicate in translation through my mate who often stares blankly at me when i describe a particular styling.

while god knows what is being done to my hair my mate is reading the latest expose on eurovision winner maria sharifovic....'maria tells all about her sexuality' .... in the article maria 'comes out' as STRAIGHT...and reveals she is seeing 'a younger man who prefers to keep his identity secret.' everyone knows she is gay...but yeah in a country where a recent study showed that %70 of the population regard homosexuality as a mental illness and %80 percent believe it shouldn't be seen in public..i guess there is some incentive to stay in the closet.

my hairdresser laughs and tells my mate (who translates) 'pah! she is straight?!...she used to date one of the girls who worked here!'   ;D

my mate did try to kick off some sort of discussion about judith butler...but i cut them short! everybody needs a little time out now and again.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

stone femme shoes Archive May 03, 2008

stone femme shoes
May 03, 2008

hmmm....i cant believe how much of a miserable bastard i am today  :-\ but yeah it happens....im homesick.

WHINGE ALERT
yesterday in the streets was just plain depressing, kids begging in the streets, old women with babies begging in the streets, people sitting on the street selling what ever it is they have found in the trash ...yeah it was just one of those grey days.
of course these things happen everyday...but i was less than 'up', tired of having every interaction with the outside world in a language i barely understand, tierd of how weird i can feel navigating this city because as a stupid westerner i dont 'read' a lot of what is going on around me so well...so sometimes i feel less safe.....hackney where i live is not paradise, but i understand more of what is going on around me.

bluh...travel blues

still it was nice riding the tram through the old city last night - the neighbourhood of dorcol, the road down from kalamegdan park to the wharves, then to the railway station....watching the lights of the city, the crumbling buildings, the river sava.

4 more days and im back in london........PHEW

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

stone femme shoes archive May 01, 2008

stone femme shoes
May 01, 2008

i just slept for something like 10 hours...as it was getting to the point where something was going to fall apart (most likely me). this morning i feel a bit better, slightly PANICING that there is still so much work to do, but at the same time im able to see a lot has been done in the last few days. i dont know how to get over the feeling that i am slacking, fooling around, being a bit LAZY....there is always more stuff to do than i find physically or emotionally possible  :-\ so yeah...this is not an unfamiliar place for me to be - caught in between my own exhaustion and a stack of tasks.

news flash news flash news flash

well actually a bit of a slow moving 'news flash' due to my own lack of time to write here

the german ambassador for foreign affairs intervened and our friend here WAS granted a visa to attend the trans council in berlin.
i caught up with her just before she was due to leave....a crazy high speed meeting including modifying scripts, talking about film and sound recordings that need to be done for the transfab show and staging ideas for the collaborative piece that she will do with miss dotty.

i get a bit stressed with these meetings as often im talking to people i may have met once, or perhaps have only had email contact with..yet here i am trying to instill them with a sort of confidence in me and the project so that they will TRUST me and feel happy about telling very personal stories.

A is GREAT tho...she has already put so much work into developing the script via emails, its easy to work with her because she wants to do this so much. still im always aware of how nervous i am, how nervous the other person is! this is the second time we have had a meeting with just the two of us.
im excited about this piece tho...having two transwomen who live in totally different countries/cultures tell their stories alongside each other.
miss dotty will choreograph their dance together......of course they will only meet 3 days before the show but hey..IT WILL BE FINE. *practices breathing exercises*

after falling over and NOT getting very much sleep i go to meet two more activists who will come to london and perform in the transfab show.
(well actually i havent quite successfully convinced one of them yet)
one is my 'Diva' a highly strung man with a deep affection for louisa hay. he is a great drag queen.... i already have scripts sorted out for him - i trust him - i KNOW he will get incredibly nervous, sweat, panic....but he WILL go out there and do a beautiful show (at least i hope so) as in the past he always has.
my other guy...hmmm..well he is very shy, some one who has worked so damn hard as an activist for trans people in this country for the last 12 years, at the same time dealing with abuse and violence because of who he is. currently he is bringing together the serbian trans support group - they have been meeting for about a year and a half now. 12 people come regularly to the group, some are connected via phone or online, so in all there are about 23 people. he is also helping to start a group in sarajevo very soon.
i explain to him that if he comes to london its very important that he lets people know this story!! that he doesnt just hide in the corners and not say anything about the AMAZING work he is doing. i think we reach an agreement....im going to have to keep working on this one over the next few weeks. but spending time with both of them is great, when i arrived i was completely drained - not sure how to survive the meeting- when i left i was in a totally different mood  :D as i got such a recharge from their energy  ;D

its may 1st today (duh, i guess you know that) but being in this post communist country there is more of a history of celebrating workers day. today is a public holiday - and later i will meet my friend and we will take part in a demonstration with the local crew.

right now  im sitting ALONE in the apartment  ;D, just had a second cup of tea (you have no idea how hard it is to get a decent cup of tea around here) and im thinking to get on with the day. scripts, scripts, scripts.

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

stone femme shoes - archive April 29, 2008

stone femme shoes archive
April 29, 2008,

yesterday we had our first big collective meeting, these meetings always make me VERY nervous, there have been some incredible fights in the past. im glad to report that the entire two hours passed without anyone being shot, stabbed or death threats being issued.  ;)

before the meeting started i looked around the room  - seeing our group - and just feeling incredibly happy at what an amazing bunch of people they are. STRONG sometimes volatile personalities...but yeah i feel privileged to know all of them.
some journalist was present - often there are people who come through beograd doing studies or writing articles- this was kind of funny as afterwards she mentioned that she had been warned that the meeting might be quite heated...and instead thought we were highly organised. LOL.

in the meeting we spent a fair bit of time debating on the idea of doing a public action ...how safe it is to do something visibly queer in the streets here?.
its a longtime since the attempt at a first gay pride in 2001...http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qE0M9lo6ZBk (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qE0M9lo6ZBk) <-----warning this video is extremely violent
still no one has managed another successful attempt, we also will NOT try this...but how to do ANYTHING that is about claiming public space??


ive just had coffee with one of the activists/performers who will come to transfabulous and be part of the show we do there. he's an amazing guy, really inspiring, he works as a forensic scientist doing identification of the human remains from the mass graves of srebrenica.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srebrenica_massacre (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srebrenica_massacre)
meeting him calmed my nerves about the insane people wrangling skills involved in this project and trying to collaborate on scripts with people here while i am in london. he is just so chilled out and it turns out he has a history as a performer first as a kid doing shakespeare and then as part of the DC kings.
PHEW.
we talked about ideas for his piece - how to approach the subject of the srebrenica massacre without being either sensationalist or conversely tip-toeing around the subject ...again he is calm, pragmatic....again PHEW...im filled with confidence and so glad that he is part of this crew.

today i feel LUCKY...a bit emotional and tired but yeah mostly lucky.  :)

Monday, 6 June 2016

stone femme shoes April 25, 2008, A Long time ago I started to keep a semi-private diary

A Long time ago I started to keep a semi-private diary on a now defunct site called 'Transfriendly' the blog titled in a bitterly ironic way 'Stone Femme Shoes' contains a lot of material on my creative work with Queer Beograd, my thoughts on Femme and gender, plus other issues of illness/a/relationships/queerness. I stopped keeping the blog in 2015,  I'm going to start retrospectively publishing some of this material online. Here Goes!

stone femme shoes
April 25, 2008,

this is a first time for the online journal thing for me. no apologies for spelling or anything else.

ive been thinking about doing this for a while, maybe its somewhere to put a bit of that internal chat..all the stuff that happens that is related to gender/life/craziness....and maybe there is a chance that some one else might read it and understand it.
if you do cool! if you don't....unless its  politely phrased i dont want to know.

ive just arrived in Beograd - Serbia, another organizing trip with the queer crew i'm part of here. i feel absolutely hammered as ive been traveling since 6am, got to experience the remarkably swish 'London city airport' and can currently hear a conversation behind me (in serbian) i can catch the odd word or two but the only thing i can clearly understand is the oft repeated phrase 'gay porn'.

as usual before coming here ive been dreaming of getting out of london, as usual when arriving here im freaked out by the difference of culture, the poverty, the crazy political situation....and im ALWAYS on edge about what kind of war will break out in our collectives some what volatile group dynamic.

ive spent a few hours catching up with my best mate who im staying with, who's doing what, who's doing who....and talking work work work. its orthodox easter this weekend so the city shuts down and we may get a chance to rest before the onslaught of organizing our next queer festival and the crews trip to Transfabulous in June.

i keep worrying about HOW MUCH WORK THERE IS TO DO but im so tired i cant think straight....so we're going for a walk to get icecream- its warm here!  :D