FRIDAY OPEN THREAD: This Is The Welcome Wagon for Your New Contributing Editors

Hello, cyborgs and robocops! It’s been another wild and wonderful week since our last Friday Open Thread, in which we post analytical essays and readers respond in kind with a 2-3 paragraph academic critique. JK! It’s the space where we shoot the shit with each other because eventually, when we all conquer the world, we wanna make sure we know the right people.

We’ve added some new faces to our ranks here at Autostraddle recently, including five new Contributing Editors. Rather than letting y’all slowly get to know each other, we’re gonna cut to the chase right here, right now. This is a no-holds-barred space for familiarizing yourself with our newest shining stars. We’re putting a twist on the classic Friday Open Thread algorithm: instead of one host, you’re getting all five at once, and instead of one weekly theme, they’ve each got their own questions to allow them to look deep into your hearts. Some things never change, though, so feel free to answer those questions, ask questions in response, or even go forth and tell us all about your life with no regard for any of this, which is fabulous and rebellious of you. Remember to comment on each other’s posts and also to post pictures of your pets and/or latest projects!

OKAY, TEAM. Let’s get started.


Plz note in the caption that we all have essentially the same haircut, yet mine is definitely the best.

Plz note in the caption that we all have essentially the same haircut, yet mine is definitely the best.

A few days ago I did an Incredibly Adult thing and bought two versions of something I liked in case I lost one of them, because I’m a scatter-brained fool who loses things all the time. Okay, tee-bee-aech it was cheap sunglasses, I finally learned to preemptively buy two pairs of really cheap sunglasses. I stand by this gesture of personal growth, and it got me thinking about all less cheap things I have loved and lost, including a wonderfully soft wool sweater, an iPod Touch and a grinder of great sentimental value. I feel like you know that feel, too, so let’s be friends and share: what are the best things you’ve loved and lost? Do you remember how you lost them, is each loss imprinted on your heart forever? Or were some things lost in a move or you swear you had it on you last week, and you’re still holding out hope for it to reappear when you finally reorganize your room? C’mon, we’re buddies, let it out and we’ll get through this together.



Some of the worst (and often most hilarious) anti-queer propaganda talks about “warning signs” signs that your child might be dabbling in the “homosexual lifestyle” or other supposedly “sinful” activities. While I think that’s all a giant load of giraffe droppings, I have these moments when I look at my younger self, knowing I turned out to be queer and trans, and think “well damn, THAT should have been a clue to SOMEONE!” While I’m not saying that ALL fourteen year olds who are CAMAB and obsessed with Tori Amos turn out to be trans lesbians, this one certainly did. So, I’m curious straddlers…do you have any childhood or adolescent moments that you look back on and think, “Wow, how can it be a surprise to ANYONE that I turned out to be queer?”



The front desk staff at our small-pet-specialist vet’s office revealed to us that they used to talk about who, from their client list, they would prefer as owners if they were reincarnated as tiny, adorable furbabies. My partner and I were, apparently, in the top tier of ideal pet parents. We have a very, very, very big love for our furkids and we usually have about a full menagerie of little spoiled babies running around. At one point we had two guinea pigs, a rabbit, a cat, and four rats at the same time. Cage-cleaning Sunday was the freakin’ worst during this period. So. Much. Poop. You don’t even want to know. In our current house, we literally gave one of the bedrooms in our house over to our two rabbits (the buns), who run free in there, and our guinea pigs (the wiggles) who live in a 13.5 square foot pig palace. We also have a weird, weird cat who loves us and hates everything and everyone that is not us.

I think if I could be any pet, I’d like to be a turtle, but I’m not that chill at all. My ex said I’d be a hamster because I run around like a maniac and I like to carry food in my cheek pouches. I’d prefer to be a rat, if I have to be a small animal, because rats are super smart and social and resilient. And they eat everything. I’d be a rat. And I’d specifically like to be my good friend Lauren’s rat, because she would totally let me ride on her shoulder like a boss and she would take me to the vet if I got cancer (which I probably would because rats love to get cancer) and she would give me lots of ratty treats. That’s my plan. Anyway, if you could be any person’s pet in your next life, what kind of pet would you come back as and who would you choose to be your pet parent(s)?



Portland recently finished a week long celebration of the hamburger sponsored by one of our alternative newspapers. Portland Burger Week offered $5 burgers at nearly 20 restaurants known for their burg’. I wanted to try no less than 8 of the specialties including the char siu which had ground Laurelhurst Market beef patty on brioche, with shaved char siu pork, spicy Chinese mustard, and crunchy Asian pickles. But my stomach and liver probably thank me for only having 4 over the course of the week. My favorite was probably the Venison Focaccia with house-cured pork belly, house pickles, tomato jam, fresh aioli, and a char-grilled Nicky USA venison patty. Even vegetarians were able to get in on the meat fest with a really tasty Hazlenut Beet Burger whose veggie patty consisted of garlic, almonds, brown sugar, red miso, kosher salt, black pepper, peanut butter, wakame, hazelnuts, quinoa, beets, potato starch, white onion, olive oil, served on a toasted bun with Misonaise, Heidi Ho Monterey Jack, carrot ramps and pea shoots. So if you could pick your perfect patty, what would it be and what would you top it with?


I’m Briana AKA Da Baddest Witch. 467 in bruja years but I tell everyone I’m 24. Born to a Dominican immigrants in Upstate New York, raised in the Bible Belt of the Bible Belt, AKA West Michigan, AKA the land responsible for the propagation of shitty Metalcore during the early and mid 2000s. Big mouth radical queenie and proud queer agenda-ist-er. Here’s my latest selfie of me I took at a show in a warehouse at the edge of town called “The Deathhouse.” In case you couldn’t tell I try to live my life like it’s a Gregg Araki film.


Fun facts: I have 11 holes in my head, some of the stretched. Piercings are funnnn. I don’t like water but I force myself to drink it because you need it to live, annoyingly enough. My calico cat has a heart-shaped birthmark on her nose. Last but not least, I recently discovered I know how to make a mean caramelized onion, spinach, provolone, goat cheese and balsamic and red wine vinegar reduction sourdough sandwich. Really there’s not too much fun about me let’s be honest.

During Autostraddle Brunch, there was an animated discussion about some commonly heard queer terminology and their usage, the terms being Androgynous, Butch, and Tomboy. Many folks held that androgynous seems to be used more by straight people especially in the fashion industry and refers to a form of feminine-leaning genderqueer style expression or presentation (though not necessarily a gender identity), but is often vet limited in how inclusive it is (androgynous people are always pale white thin femme-ish people). People also brought up how there has been usages of the term by queer people to describe their gender. Butch seemed to be seen as bit more restrictive in terms of masculine binary expression than tomboy, which many people felt more comfortable with and seemed to have less boundaries and seem to suggest maybe a “softer” butch. How do ya’ll view, use, and parse the terms butch, androgynous, and Tomboy, if at all? Do you have problems with their usage?

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Carmen spent six years at Autostraddle, ultimately serving as Straddleverse Director, Feminism Editor and Social Media Co-Director. She is now the Consulting Digital Editor at Ms. and writes regularly for DAME, the Women’s Media Center, the National Women’s History Museum and other prominent feminist platforms; her work has also been published in print and online by outlets like BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic and SIGNS, and she is a co-founder of Argot Magazine. You can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr or in the drive-thru line at the nearest In-N-Out.

Carmen has written 919 articles for us.


  1. Woot I’ve been waiting for the Friday open thread since Monday, since my furbabies came home to me and I want to show all you lovelies. I’m currently wearing one as a shrug and the other is draped on my stomach. They are adorbs.

    Sir Topham Cat:

    Diana, named after the goddess of the hunt:

    I’ll think about the questions from the new editors and post again later.

    • They are both so cute Emma!!! I remember you telling us about them, and now I am very jealous about how adorable they are!


      This coincidentally related to my pet rats. Doesn’t everything? I had two sisters names Artemis and Diana, also after the goddesses of the hunt!

      This is my Diana (RIP girlie) running down my partner’s arm:

      • So cute! I had pet mice when I was 7 or 8 but I hated to clean their cage, so my older brother made me let them go in a field. So sad.

    • Official Cat Lottery Winner.

      Of course you’re wearing your cats. This is a severely underrated kitten training technique that leads to awesome cat cuddles in bed.

  2. 1) My roomates and I had a marble wire cheese slicer situation which we used to its inevitable wire snap. I mean, I did that. I broke the cheese slicer. No one else even got to say good bye.

    2) My mom cut all my hair off because head lice when I was in grade school, there were no warning signs. Everybody knew but me. I was childishly angry to discover they were right all along

    3) A Weird cat. And pretty much anybody, cats don’t care.

    4) 2 1/3 lb pattys, onions, garlic, ketchup, potatoes. All cooked in one pan. No bun(not against carbs, just a limited capacity human who isn’t wasting space on bread)

    5) I always say Androgynous *to* straight people, because they think tomboys are children, and I get all kinds of disorderly in public when I have to explain Butch does not mean ugly. And we always seem to have those conversations in nice places that I would like to be invited back to.

    • that’s a tragic loss right there. my heart goes out to you and your roommates and that undoubtedly beautiful cheese slicer.

      also I feel you so hard on #2, I was VERY INTO TEGAN & SARA and everyone knew except me. looking back, really, young me, really?

    • IRT 5)-Yeah, I really do tend to use it with straight people, and I have noticed how butch does seem to make people’s face scrunch up in horror (which boo to that). I think “Tomboy” is generally thought of as being exclusively for kids but queers have reclaimed it for themselves because we freakin’ can. If you run out of nice places to go to because you’ve been banned everywhere feel free to visit my town, people are either really chill or just too polite to call you out on making them heterosexually uncomfortable while you scream about queer things.

      • I like to say butch in the sexiest possible way when talking with straight people in order to throw them off a little because I am SO SICK of that face!

  3. I have no idea what I’ve lost, because 90% of my life is in storage right now while I wait to find a Real Job and a Real Apartment. I could be all melancholy and say I’ve lost my sense of self, but honestly, I have a new & baller haircut, tat, and car, so I’m perfectually happy.

    When I was six, I asked for a remote control construction crane for Christmas. And I got it. There are pictures of me in my dinosaur PJs playing with it… somewhere.

  4. This is Rosie. She’s not mine, but I doggy-sat her today, and she’s the absolute cutest – I have never met a dog more cuddly than her.
    (I really hope the image shows!)

    To answer the first question – oh God, I am the queen of losing things! I’ve lost my phone, my sunglasses, my wallet (twice), my bag, my ID, a jacket … And those are just the things I can think of off the top of my head. Most regrettably, though, is the fact that I lost my girlfriend’s favourite beanie. I still haven’t forgiven myself for that one.

    • No, wait. This is how you make it work:

      (Right?) (I’m doing this on my phone. Please don’t judge me if it doesn’t work again)

      • It worked!

        And how cute are her little belly spots. I LOVE!

        Losing your wallet/id/purse is the WORST. I’ve done it, too. Like, just left it someplace like an idiot. UGH.

      • IT WORKED. and what a glorious dog pic, mmmyes good.

        I have lost so many beanies as well. why do we keep letting beanies walk away from us.

  5. Well I guess for me looking back, and this kind of embarrassing, it would be when I was in my early teens. I would sometimes go to the bathroom and try on my mothers clothing from the hamper and wondering how I can trim my hair down there into a heart shape like that one porn I saw, and years of trying to make a Jew fro into long flowing hair(which sadly will never occur).

    • What is with those heart shaped pube designs–pube sculpting? Maybe I have weird ones and maybe this is TMI, but I can’t fathom how that would even work. I don’t think it is possible with my hair type. Like, HOW?

      • I dunno, I was in my late teens-early 20s saw pubic hair, on a woman in the adult industry, that was in the shape of a heart and I tried to do it, but failed. I have since tried it again(with January being the last time) and I am really terrible. I think I need to find a lady activity parent to help me.

        • Yes I did the last time I attempted it, came out awful(but to be fair it wasn’t stencil, more me drawing it on me then trimming). I knew my mother’s drawing skills skipped me(though not my sister), but I didn’t think I was THAT horrible. :-/

  6. Answering my fellow newbies questions:

    1) JEWELRY. I am constantly falling in love with jewelry and then it goes and disappears and I am sad forever. Specifically, there was this ring that my mom found when she was a girl that she gave to me. It was probably someone’s promise ring or wedding right or something. It was just a silver band and on the inside it said “Helmut” with a date I can’t remember now. I had this whole backstory about Helmut and his lady love and the lost ring. I got weirdly attached to it. I used to wear it on my left ring finger all the time–never took it off–for a few years. I lost it swimming in the stupid river. It was there and then it was gone and I still think about it sometimes.

    2) I played WWF with my Cabbage Patch Dolls. Even though I’m pretty feminine-presenting now, I used to be a little bit of a tomboy growing up — hated dresses, played with the boys at recess.

    3) I already told you I’d be Lauren’s rat and I’d ride around on her shoulder. It would be a beautiful 1-3 years of life.

    4) I actually kind of don’t like burgers. Is that weird? And not just because I’m vegan. I’ve never really craved a burger. I like the toppings that go on a burger. I could just eat burger toppings–sauteed onions and mushrooms and peppers, crisp lettuce, veganaise, spicy brown mustard, ketchup, BBQ sauce, bread and butter pickles…OMG I’m having a major craving for a bun full of toppings now…

    5) I feel like I just go with what people refer to themselves as. I’d never describe a specific person as butch unless I knew they identified that way. However, sometimes I talk about butch gender representation as a “thing,” like in terms of “butchin-it-up.”

    • I am constantly losing jewelry too. Earrings, specifically! I just take them off, set them down, and poof! Gone forever.

  7. When I was a tiny person I used to create elaborate soap opera style plots with my Barbie dolls. The one I played most often was planning a HUGE wedding ceremony for one of my many Barbies with my one lone Ken doll and then as soon as they walked down the aisle and began the wedding ceremony Barbie would suddenly be like “I CAN’T DO THIS” and run off into the sunset with the prettiest doll I had.

    Yeah. My family really should have seen it coming.

  8. Welcome new contributors!

    I’m currently working from home, counting down til my work day ends (t-minus 1 hour) and my vacation FINALLY begins. Also killing time by browsing Autostraddle instead of checking my work email, because PFFFFFF.

    Buh-bye deadlines, late nights, annoying clients requesting “fun” fonts and just work all together!

    for one week

    • AAGGHHH clients requesting “fun” fonts! or “a different color, I don’t know really, just not this one.” the worst. cheers to the almost-weekend!

  9. Hello and welcome, shiny new contributing editors! I’m going to tackle each question, because I am killing time before going out later tonight and it’s fun…

    1) Robin: First of all, your crazy-smile is the best. THE BEST. Secondly, I had this really great white, short-sleeved button up that I found at a thrift store and it fit me perfectly and was super good for when I wanted to be formal-casual in warmer months. I wore it to do some hobnobbing in DC and must have left it in my hotel room, but when I called the hotel nothing had been turned in. I’ve been weirdly upset about that ever since, and it has been several years now.

    2) Mari: You want me to name ONE moment? I’m pretty sure my entire adolescence was a non-stop cavalcade of “she is so, so queer” moments.

    3) KaeLyn: That is a weird question and I like it. I’d want to come back as a mutt dog of some kind, and be taken care of by my sister. I’m pretty sure she could literally walk into a forest, stretch out her arms, and have all the creatures of the land come happily to her side.

    4) Alley: I’m a huge fan of buffalo burgers, so I’d go with that for the patty and, if my lactose intolerance was no longer a factor, top it with fresh mozzarella, basil, and a little bit of garlic aoli. Perfection.

    5) Briana: First of all, “I try to live my life like it’s a Gregg Araki film” = yes, forever. Secondly, I think I’ve only ever been referred to as “androgynous” by (well-meaning) straight people, so the argument you laid out makes a lot of sense to me. I tend to label my personal style as being “soft butch.” I mean, there are no perfect labels, and a lot of them come with serious baggage for different people. Too, I could be anything on any given day, but I think that comes closest to wear I fall more often than not.

    • important question, is your sister an actual disney princess?

      and GOSH that’s a good burger combo!

      • My sister would make a really awesome Disney Princess. One that wore torn-up jeans and had two eyebrow piercings and was a big ol’ lesbian, and also that all animals everywhere adored.

    • Gregg Araki FTW.
      Yeah, “Butch” I think gets a reaction because it is a very specific label and it comes off like you’re trying to ID someone for them, so I try to be careful. If it is ultimately necessary for me to describe someone’s presentation (which usually it really isn’t) I try to say “They had a more masculine/butchy style” and try to be careful not to say “THEY WERE BUTCH” or whatever else because I want to respect how they ID, and how complicated and complex that can be. I like the term soft butch, it is very adorable haha I don’t mean that to be condescending I just think it’s sweet :D

  10. 1. I had a sentimental Nalgene water bottle that was covered with all my favorite stickers and I lost it on a bus in Mexico. I dropped it and it rolled away under the seats and I didn’t know how to explain to the other passengers why I was rooting around under their feet, so there it stayed. I still miss that thing.

    2. I was hardcore into Xena, Warrior Princess and I wore flannel every day of my senior year in high school. That could have been latent queerism or it could have just been the 90’s, I don’t know.

    3. I would definitely be a cat in some rich person’s house so I could lay around all day, have my belly rubbed on demand and have a huge cat tree/climbing structure so I could sit up high and lord it over everyone else in the household.

    4. My perfect burger is a blue cheese stuffed beef burger with fried onions, barbecue sauce, lettuce and tomato, cooked on a charcoal grill.

    5. Those three terms all have negative connotations for me, especially tomboy, since it was used as an accusation or insult too many times when I was little. I agree that most images of ‘androgynous’ are of extremely thin, tall, white folks. Butch seems outdated, like it peaked in 1990. I like the term tomboy femme, however, and tend to use that to describe my gender presentation.

  11. Also answering my fellow new folx’s questions:

    1) I thought of another thing I lost, which was a beautiful, slim piezoelectric lighter with stainless steel finish and I lost it one day when it was raining and I was running from one overhang to the next. I still go on eBay sometimes looking for a new one but alas, it was one of a kind in my heart and no lighter will ever replace it

    2) I hated wearing skirts or dresses, and I always forgot when I needed to dress up for things, which I guess was a combination of irreverence and the queer tendency to “just wear what’s comfortable.”

    3) a disdainful yet attention-seeking cat

    4) lamb patty, sour cream and crispy onions and tomatoes and avocado. but that veggie burger sounds deeeeelicious

    5) I think my style/look usually falls under the category of tomboy? My ex’s mom, before she met me, thought I was butch, which I’m not sure I can claim, and I don’t think I scan androgynous so much as “having a haircut that you mostly see on dudes.” I’ve recently started calling my style “bro-dandy.” a bro when I’m just chillin, tank top and loose shorts, a dandy when I want to show off my plumage with like, a fun collared shirt and shiny shoes and maybe a bowtie. and who’s to say that bros aren’t dandies too, sometimes

  12. New people!!!!! =) hi! Hello! I already love the way you guys write stuff! -fistbump-

    so excited its Friday! Did you guys know I spend my week waiting for or open threads so I can hang out with you peeps on the intranet. Brunch was awesome, hoping for more hangouts. =) im trying to get a pic of the furbaby on here. See you guys later!

  13. In my next life, I would like to be my dog’s pet. Remember Neopets, when your pet could have a pet pet? I think that’s what my dog needs. I will gladly let her be my owner in another life. I mean, she pretty much owns me already, so why not let her be the “human” and me the “dog”?

    I would like to share with you all a video of a song I wrote from a concert I produced. It’s a song from my musical. [youtube Enjoy!

    Also, I am moving, yet again, this weekend. I’m excited!

    Also also, I wrote a play this past week. It’s tentative called “Pancakes, Wine, and Cigarettes”. It’s actually the first real play I’ve ever written. I almost exclusively write musicals, which is what my MFA is in, but I decided to challenge myself to write a play!

    Also also also, this is the first year in 21 years that I will not be starting school. It’s such a weird feeling being a sort-of adult.

    • Welcome to sort-of adult-hood. I’m trading places with you. After a hiatus from school, I’m going back! But it’s all online and I’m still working full-time and all that. It’s still super weird having homework. WHAT?!

      Congrats on writing your first play! Also, your song is ah-mazing! What show is this from/for? Is there someplace I can see/hear more of your work?

      Oh, and I love that you’d be your dog’s pet. Just perfect. Also, would you judge me if I told you I still play Neopets sometimes?

  14. 1. It’s… not so much LOSING… but food leftovers. When I go out to eat and I get my leftover boxed up, I ALWAYS leave them on the table. I mean ALWAYS. Each lost meal remains imprinted on my soul. The uneaten sweet potato fries. That perfect roasted plum and cashew ricotta pizza. Heartbroken.

    2. So um. My birthday was last weekend and my mom posted this picture of me on facebook:

    I was such a dapper queerling.

    3. KaeLyn… I’m not sure I’ve ever wanted an internet stranger to be my friend more. I have two buns who run free in my bedroom. And if I were to come back as someone’s animal friend, I would want to be my friend Angela’s rat. Rats are so clever and I enjoy their tendency to dragon food and shiny things. And Angela fills her rats’ water bottles with tea and shares all of the delicious vegan food she cooks with them. Like, that’s really all I want out of life. Tea, vegetables, and the occasional bite of vegan cupcake.

    4.I’m pretty sure that this is the perfect burger:
    Sweet potatoes, chickpeas, peanuts, and lots of herbs. Omnomnomnomnom.

    5. Androgyny in popular usage does seem to mean skinny and white. I like to apply it to my fat, big boobed self though. Butch and femme both imply a stronger sense of masculinity and femininity than my gender fluid self feels at any given time. And tomboy doesn’t really fit for me. I like androgyny because, to me, it should mean a mix of femininity and masculinity in a way that is both of those things and also something else. And that’s how my brain and my fashion sense feels. So, I’m making fat androgyny thing.

      • I would 100% wear that outfit today. Well, maybe not today because it’s super hot. But a month from now.

    • Absolutely, I feel ya. Power to you for working to reclaim that word for yourself how you see fit :D BTW do you have the same hair now as you do in your avatar bc then we both have purple hair, wow!?!

    • I demand pictures of your buns, k thx. Here’s my silly pair, Gandalf the grey lionhead and Aphrodite the bunny of love mini-lop:

      Let’s be rat friends!!! We can go on rattie adventures together! And get scritches from humans!!!

      • The white one is Katie “Danger Toes” and the lionhead is Spencer “The Fluff Ball of Doom”! :D

        The book was a copy of a biography about lawrence of arabia. Bunnies don’t like romanticized colonialism.

        Yes! Rattie adventures! Hide all of the noms and try to steal people’s jewelry and get all of the scritches!

        • Oh noz. Only one bun came through! Here’s my other bun:

          Your bunnies are adorbs! I love that we both have a proper lionhead with the full face mane. My bunnies are really into destroying phonebooks and hiding in tunnels because they are probably government conspiracy theorists.

          Let’s amass an enormous pile of noms and not share them with ANYONE. Until our people clean our home and throw them all out and then we’ll be sad, but it’s OK, there will be more noms to hoard.

        • Ehhhnnn. Your bunnies are adorable. Katie and Spencer are also really into tunnels. Also eating boxes.

          And yes! We’ll hide all of the noms. Then the humans will sit on them by accident and it’ll be funny. Unless they do that thing where they take the hidden noms and give them back to us so we think it’s entirely new food. It’s the worst when they do that.

    • Currently waxing poetic about some Chicken Tikka Masala that I forgot I had and found, moldy and sad, a week after I rapturously ate it the first time.

  15. a) My dad moved apartments this week, and it took us all night to set up my bed to the point where I could sleep on it. And we still haven’t finished it completely.

    b) New mattress. Need I say more?

    c) My wonderful cat Annie, got pounced on by my grandmother’s Yorkie.

    d) My other cat, Shadow, vomited on my jeans. Not cool, cat.

    e) My girlfriend broke up with me, even though she says we could work out, she wants to date other people first. She doesn’t want to be a one girlfriend girl, which I can respect.

    f) Why am I using letters instead of numbers?

    g) I got my first job, and my first paycheck! I’m working at Justice, which, for those who do not know, sells clothing targeted for girls in the age range of 7-14. I like it, and a close friend and I are going out tomorrow to spend my very first paycheck.

    h) Y’all are wonderful people, and I love all the animal pictures. Did I mention this is my first Friday Open Thread to participate in?

    • Hey dude, I worked at Justice for a while! You will soon know the lyrics to every horrible teeny bopper pop song. I once woke up my ex boyfriend because I was mumblesinging one in my sleep. So, uh, good luck.

  16. This was my first full week back at school and despite having to take an AP US History quiz and write an essay on the relationship between ownership and sense of self it was good.

    I had awkward conversations with my ex (ex sounds so bizarre, like I never thought I’d call someone an ex and that isn’t at all how I’d define our relationship?) which was… something that happened and I think was good because we’re trying to be friends.

    I also need to learn how to make friends because there’s a really cool guy that I know from summer camp in Vermont who now goes to my school and I want his friendship. I also want to befriend the lesbian in the grade below me (well not the only one, but the one that I kind of know) because I need to make a queer friend group thing happen, but I don’t know how!

    • I call this “wanting to friend collect” someone, like, when you meet someone who is really cool and you aren’t attracted to them in a sexual or romantic way, but you really, really, really want to be their BFF. Friend collecting is harder than hitting on someone, I think, because you have to try to build a real bond instead of just getting them to think you’re cute. And rejection stings a lot…maybe even more than when you’re trying to get with someone.

      Maybe start by finding an excuse to talk to them a few times and, if you get the feeling that they are also having friend feelings for you, ask them if they want to hang out sometime?

      • Yeah exactly! I call them priends (potential friends, but my real friends say they’re pretend friends because I’m so bad at actually befriending people). With hitting on a girl I can be way ore straight forward because flirting is fun, but making friends is scary!

        Thanks for the advice… I’m trying to find ways to conversation, but it’s hard because I don’t have classes with either of them!

  17. Welcome Contributing Editors! You are all wonderful and ask such original questions!

    1. I misplace everything I own at least once. In 7th grade, I lost my first ever cell phone. Gone forever. I was sad for about a week.

    2. Everybody knew I was gay but me. But there were warning signs, like my fascination with (read: crush on) Elizabeth I, my childhood declaration to never ever marry and later, the fact that my month-long high school romance with my first and only boyfriend was accompanied by the feeling that something was wrong.

    3. I would come back as a cat, and I would want to be my friend Amber’s cat. There would be no shortage of food and places to sleep.

    4. Veggie patty with corn, quinoa, garlic, green peppers, black beans and pepper.

    5. I don’t mind terms like “butch” and “femme”, though neither one really fits me. I like “androgynous”, but that doesn’t fit either. “tomboy femme” is the closest I can think of.

    • I’m not sure how I didn’t figure it out with my middle school “boyfriend” (it so didn’t count because we were probably 11 and dating just wasn’t a thing yet). It was probably a lot less than a month long, but I heard he was going to kiss me and I broke up with him. I now realize that all those boys I thought I had crushes on were really just people I wanted to be and the girl who I cared about a million times more than anyone was the person I actually had a crush on.

      • Not the current one. Queen Elizabeth I ruled England in the late sixteenth century, and she never married or had children.

    • High five!
      I had a crush on Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth I of England as well, ok had maybe is not the right word to be honest.

  18. Best thing I have loved and lost: My Esmeralda barbie doll. I was a lowly 3rd grader, the thief was a cruel 6th grader. I didn’t stand a chance.

    Childhood moment that ought’ve told somebody I was queer: I demanded to play Danny Zuko in a summer camp production of Grease. I was determined to be a little greaser heartbreaker, and part of me still yearns to be.

    Whose pet would I be?: No idea, but I would most definitely be somebody’s little pampered cat.

    Perfect patty: Portobello mushroom patty with onions, lettuce, tomato, basil, and omg I’m very very hungry now.

    How do I view/use/parse terms: I go with whatever people call themselves – I don’t like describing/calling people terms unless they self-identify and approve of me using the term. I supposed I would self describe as a dyke or tomboy, but I think my identity is on a sliding scale. It changes day to day.

    Anyway, this weekend I’m going to Bumbershoot in Seattle with my girlfriend. I’m excited to have a relaxing, ‘just us’ weekend. To top this comment off, here’s a thing I drew a few weeks back I still get a kick out of.

  19. 1. I lost a lot of my words a couple years back. I often feel that my soul has been rent open and is dripping… you know… red… liquid… it’s pumped through… transmission fluid? Close enough–as I grasp desperately for the appropriate word. I was on a migraine medication, fondly referred to now as “stupid pills,” that relieved me of my pesky cognitive abilities for three months. I lost concentration, some memory, word finding and word fluency. Once my doctor took me off the stupid pills a lot of the side effects went away, but my word problems remained. I miss my words so much!

    2. I remember being about 11 years old and looking up “lesbian” in our ancient set of encyclopedias (I want to say it was published in 1964, but I might be making that up. Oh, and pre-Wikipedia, y’all). It said something about lesbianism being a disease and possibly related to the devil or evil or something. I’m pretty sure I looked it up on a couple different occasions, because it seemed like that wasn’t right. But the internet was still new, certainly no one in our tiny Montana town had it, and I’m pretty sure our town library, which was one room and was only open one day a week for a couple hours, probably had the same encyclopedias. So years later I ended up calling myself bi and getting drunk to kiss girls at parties, ostensibly because the boys liked it. But the kissing of the girls. That should have been the sign that there was something not straight going on.

    More later. My fiancee needs me to cuddle. (I’m getting married!!) :)

    • Congrats on getting married! When’s the day?

      Thanks for sharing about your lost words. What a thing to lose. I know I get all worked up when I can’t think of the word or phrase I’m looking for and if it was happening on a regular basis, that would be super frustrating.

      Kissing girls and liking it is typically a sure sign that you are not straight.

      • KaeLyn and jane, thanks! August 1, 2015 is the date! We’re doing all sorts of DIY wedding prep (Pinterest!).

        I’m getting used to the word thing. If I have enough time I can usually find a word, which isn’t too bad when I’m writing. And my fiancee has gotten used to me just blurting out words related to what I want to say so that every conversation turns into a guessing game. This leads to some hilarious conversations. So not all bad.

  20. Good evening, everyone!

    1. I lose things literally all the time, but what devestated me the most was by far this cute little pool toy shaped like a whale. I was probably four or five and my friend across the street had a pool. I was returning to my own side of the street after swimming, when suddenly— the storm drain. Fucking storm drains. I was terrified of them as a wee lad and I’m terrified of them now. I did this desperate, pathetic little jump to avoid getting sucked down or getting gobbled by a storm drain monster. In my panic, I lost my adorable blue whale and my left flip-flop. Fuck storm drains.

    2. Oh, wow. How do I pick one? I honestly didn’t realize there was a difference between me and my big brother. We played with the same toys, watched the same shows, and took baths together. My poor, sad little brain couldn’t figure out what was wrong when my mom would screech at me for wearing a towel around my waist after my first grown-up, by-myself shower. She reacted the same when I took his clothes. We were the same size, so I didn’t think it mattered. In elementary school, I’d rip the bows out of my hair and wear a big Dallas Stars sweatshirt over my red gingham dresses. I grew depressed when my brother ditched me for the neighborhood boys. I threw fits and melted plastic ponies. There are like tens and tens of signs everyone should’ve seen.

    3. I would definitely want to come back as one of my Very Significant Other’s cats. They spoil and coddle all of their cats and I am sooo here for that.

    4. I don’t eat burgers very often, or know much about their preparation. I guess that’s another Man-Point deduction for this kid.

    5. I feel like this is something people should decide for themselves because I am just a chump on the internet, what do I know?

    • When I was a kid, I was terrified that I was going to drop my stuff anytime I had to walk over a grate or storm drain. Walking out to the car at the grocery store carrying my mom’s keys was the worst.

  21. Oh also to those questions:

    1. I mean I don’t think it’s lost, but I don’t know the location of the necklace that has a nail I made when I learned how to blacksmith on it and I kind of want that.

    2. I think I’m still in the age group that you are referring to, so I don’t know that I can answer this question and I can’t think of anything when I was really little.

    3. I don’t know who’s lizard I would be, BUT I’D BE A LIZARD.

    4. I want the barbeque burger I had in Rutland, VT this summer forever because it was AMAZING. But it was probably amazing only because I didn’t have to cook it myself over a campfire like the rest of the burgers I ate this summer.

    5. I don’t use tomboy because I already was that when I shopped in the boys section as a first grader and it makes me feel like I am in some masculine phase. It also feels too feminine (I’m not saying that it IS feminine, it’s whatever you want it to be, that’s just my personal sentiment). I don’t use androgynous because it just doesn’t feel right. I often get categorized as butch because in high school people seem to like to make two categories: butch and femme. I think butch feels the most accurate and I appreciate the history behind it, but I try to not let it make me feel trapped. Like sometimes I want to call myself butch, but then I feel as though I need to get rid of this occasionally sometimes feminine ish part of myself and I want to be able to embrace that… I think.

    • Like, a big lizard? A little one? A wild one? Lizards are pretty cool. I especially like bearded dragons.

      • I know of this one person who had two ish feet lizards roaming around their house and had to cage all the plants in because of them. So probably one of those? But being a little lizard chilling on someone’s shoulder also sounds awesome.

  22. Welcome, y’all! You have my eternal gratitude for being such awesome wonderful queers and putting yourselves out there in the form of textual postings on the interwebs.

    And TLJIF, everyone! Sometimes I think the week will never end, then it does and everything is so much better. I’m so ready ready ready for the weekend!

    Shout out to my girlfriend who I’ve been with for two months as of today (holy wow is this real life!?)

    Aaaaaaand answer time…

    1) On one of my family’s many trips when I was a kid, while going through Iowa, we lost someone stole my dad’s Harley out of the back of his truck, our first family pet (a beautiful gray cat named Angel) ran away in the middle of the night, and the A/C went out in our van (in the height of summer of course). To this day, I don’t ever want to drive through Iowa again.

    2) Georgia O’Keeffe was literally my favorite artist when I was a kid. Like, I had wall calendars of her works multiple years in a row. Not a single person in my family, nor any of my friends thought anything of it. Almost everyone was surprised when I revealed to them I was trans*. Also, I played with both action figures/army men and my sister’s dolls and I played video games with my brother (mostly) and also watched random shows aimed at a primarily female audience (Clarissa, Alex Mack, Sabrina, fashion-related shows, Gilmore Girls) with my sisters. Also my hair was long and I was frequently mistaken recognized as a little girl until I was like 6 or 7 when I started getting my hair buzzed like my brother. Basically, my childhood was all sorts of confused, just like how I confuse everyone now. Delivering a slow, painful death to cishetnormativity since 1990.

    3) I know this is a stereotypical choice, but I would definitely be a cat because I usually keep a very weird/random sleep schedule and I prefer to choose when I have solo time/time with others. Gotta have my independence. My pet parents would be my actual parents because they are really good cat parents already!

    4) Portobello burger, topped with lots of veggies (fried eggplant/kale/garlic altogether, onion, tomato, probably other things I’m not thinking of right now), topped with a spicy sauce (sriracha mayo, maybe?). Buns optional.

    5) I think about this a lot. I usually use the term soft butch to describe myself, but I also like the term androgynous, fashion model-definition be damned (though, admittedly I am white/thin so I’m not far removed from that definition, either). I have used tomboy once or twice, but I try to distance myself from the word boy, so I tend to stay away from that. Even (soft) butch, though, I have some hesitation about because sometimes I feel like I haven’t lived with that experience enough to claim it as my own. I have no problem with other people using any of those words for themselves because you do you.

    • Congrats on the anniversary! Based on your description, I feel like you’d be really good at being a cat.

      Words are complicated, you know? We need more words, better words. Just putting it out there, though, that if butch is a term that feels right for you, it’s OK to embrace that. If it is a word that fits, then your lived experience is a butch experience.

      • Thanks!

        Words are very complicated. That’s part of what makes language so amazing, yet difficult at the same time. On that note, I appreciate your words.

  23. what are the best things you’ve loved and lost?
    – MY WHOLE GAME FILE FOR POKEMON YELLOW VERSION. I had ALL 150 pokemon plus Mew. Well, real talk, my grandpa isn’t a thing but I love him and lost him almost 5 years ago.

    Do you remember how you lost them, is each loss imprinted on your heart forever?
    – I do. My cousin asked to play and erased my file. I don’t think that as someone who spent almost 2 entire years playing and trading to get a pikachu that could evolve would ever forget that. Well I lost my grandpa to a heart attack. He did however live a long life that was full of love.

    Or were some things lost in a move or you swear you had it on you last week, and you’re still holding out hope for it to reappear when you finally reorganize your room?
    – I’m almost preeeeeety sure I’m getting thing I listed back by re-organizing the room? =p

    PS I still have my pokemon cards. YES.

    • Love to you on losing your grandpa. It sounds like you had lots of opportunities to show love for each other and that’s rad.

      I relate to your pokemon game thing. My old computer couldn’t handle my Sims game and sometimes I had to erase my entire game file to get it to work again. The first time, it was mildly traumatizing. Definitely an exercise in letting go…

  24. Wait did you guys know that yesterday was national bow tie day? =) DAPPERNESS REIGNS SUPREME!!!

    this was when our furbaby was still really a baby back in April.

    Also, in light of the LDR playlist @carmenrios made, this is how most of my late nights are spent. Sweet, blissful memories <3

  25. Signs? Oh I should say so.

    Most obviously when I was 8, when I tried really, really hard to make friends with the new girl in class, and would always get super upset when she said she didn’t want to come over to my house at play.

    Never fully understood what that was all about until about 5-6 years later, when I was like, “oooooooooh, I’m gay is why.”

    Jokes on said new girl though, 20 years later, she proposed to ME. AHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA!

      • Here’s a fun anecdote then!

        the next year when I was nine, our grade had a ‘traditional foods day’, everyone in the grade got a little booth in the cafeteria, and we had traditional foods of our heritage. I made latkes, which were a mega hit. She had brought in this Korean squid dish (she’d actually moved from Seoul, the year prior with her parents, but no one would try it. Being that I was still trying SUPER hard to be her bestie, I tried it to cheer her up.

        Well, the squid made my tiny nine year old body revolt, and I puked right there in the cafeteria! Awful. But, in her concern for this, she actually walked me to the nurse’s office. And the whole time my mind was screaming, “ZOMG MY HAND IS TOTALLY TOUCHING MINE OMG!!!”, still… did not realize at all what that was about for another few years.

        In the nurse’s office, I again invited her to my house to play Ninja Space Pirates (I had my own little club about that for a while), but alas, it was not to be.

        Story still has a happy ending though ^_^

  26. Alright, here I go!

    1. I lose a lot of things. I’m not terribly organized, and really absent-minded. Socks are the worst. I feel like I’m constantly buying new socks, because they just vanish. I have specific places for my keys, glasses, and cell phone, otherwise I’d lose them. Thumb drives are the most frustrating. I’ve probably lost a dozen of them.

    2. Lots of little things. My deep and obsessive love of Tori Amos and Ani DiFranco. Relating to “But I’m A Cheerleader” wayyyyy too much.

    3. I’d want to be a tortoise. Tortoise life seems wonderfully quiet, and they live a ridiculously long time with basically zero health problems. I’d hope to be kept by a quirky reptile enthusiast who let me wander their yard.

    4. I’m a bit of a burger purest. Fresh ground patty, bit of salt, grilled medium, with two thick slices of Wisconsin cheddar, with fresh vidalia onion, leaf lettuce, dill pickle, ketchup, mustard, mayo.

    5. That’s a tough one. I’ve never cared for the butch/femme terminology for myself. I find them restrictive. (If you HAD to stick me with a label, I guess you’d call me a hard femme). I suppose I tend to view “butch” without a modifier as a pretty specific presentation, and “tomboy” as pretty much any girl who likes things that cishet folks strongly gender as “male”.

  27. 1. I used to lose things SO often, but then my mom started making me buy things back that I lost…well, I don’t lose big things so much anymore, so thanks mom! Last thing I lost was the blue ring in the rainbow Swarovski crystal ring set I bought myself on a whim… Not sure if symbolism of some sort or what.

    2. I’d ALWAYS hated anything feminine growing up. Always. Like I remember my uncle (one of the queerest fellas I know and definitely one of my biggest allies.) trying to get me to wear this frilly little two-piece bathing suit when I was like 7 and I pitched the biggest fit and refused to leave my room for the rest of the day. I’d shave all the hair off any Barbie that was given to me because I thought they looked better that way. My teenage bedroom walls were half Nelly(idk) and half Aaliyah. In the middle of my own sweet sixteen party, I changed out of my pretty blue dress and into shorts and a tank top. And then of course in high school, I got sick of beating the dudes at lacrosse so I got some friends together to start the women’s team (hello, uniform shorts and locker rooms).

    3. I really wanna be one of Oprah’s dogs. Like why would you not want to be able to piss in her mansion.

    4. Angus beef. Grilled mushrooms. Grilled onions. Swiss cheese. Ketchup/Mayo/Tabasco. Grill the bun a bit. Add fries. And a cherry coke.

    5. I’ve always been called a Tomboy. It used to bug me, but dammit, that’s what I am. I’d much rather watch a day of football than a day of reality TV. I’d much rather go fishing or figure out why my car is making that noise than go wander a mall (although retail therapy can be pretty rad, too).

  28. I lost my favorite pants and belt and my sepia pen set at a Great Wolf Lodge in Charlotte.

    I was really into Joan of Arc and role-reversal fairy tales as a kid (did any of you read The Practical Princess?). I had a lot of frustration about wanting to be the knight/ sweeper-off-of feeter character instead of the princess who gets rescued/swept; that could be chalked up entirely to me WANTING SOME DAMN AGENCY, but a big part of the dilemma for me was that I felt strongly that rescuing a boy just wouldn’t be right (although again, most of those role-reversal fairy are presented like -wow what a comic twist of fate- and the male love interest is depicted as a goofball for needing to be rescued. I was like, my story is not a comic twist of fate, it’s an EPIC.)

    • Heh when the kids on the playground wanted to play Gargoyles I would insist upon being Goliath. Partly because I wanted to rescue and hold Det. Elisa in my strong arms, bring her close to my body. Annndd I think I might just have root as to why I’m “attracted” to Latin@ people.
      Autostraddle keeps pulling revelations outta me.

  29. Re: Obvious Gay Moments

    When I was 13 my Dad let me rent But I’m a Cheerleader from the video store (remember video stores?). By the end, and specifically during that scene when Clea Duvall and Nathasa Lyonne get it on under the sheets, I had an epiphany: that I realized my attraction to women and girls was a thing. This was like, a part of me that other people also experienced and could relate to.
    It was such a moving experience, I went to tell my mother about. I thought my mom was super cool, and super smart, so I figured she’d be excited to hear something I learned about myself. “Hey Mom I wanted to tell you something, I just watched this movie But I’m a Cheerleader, it’s about lesbians…”
    My mom got deathly pale, did the whole careful dance of expressing disapproval without being confrontational before I even got the chance to tell her I was gay.
    I was shocked. I started crying. My mom asked what I wanted to tell her, why I was upset? I said “Nothing, nevermind”
    Looking back on this, I feel like me crying after she told me lesbians are basically mentally ill probably tipped her off that I was a lesbian, but she is very good at living in denial.

  30. Thank you Robin and I guess Autostraddle.
    Today is the 9th anniversary of Katrina and your questions on loss have caused me to start an essay. An essay I think I need to write, more for me than for consumption because it’s not the sort of Katrina story people want to hear or would particularly add to any sort of understanding on some of the problems that made the impact of a Cat Four storm worse.
    Not yet anyway, it needs to cover more than just the 504 to really facilitate understanding and do any good in my opinion.

    Losing stuff, like inanimate objects, reveals to me how much I still don’t like myself as much as I should.

    When leaving the hotel where we evacuated to for Issac I left behind my toiletry bag. In it was my tooth brush, my Dr. Tungs toothbrush cover, deodorant, toothpaste and what little make I owned for exploring my feminine side and scaring small children.
    I could have called the hotel and got them deliver it or something, my mother insists, but I did not.

    On my birthday this year I forgot in the cab we took home my insulated backpack with my jeweled pillbox in the front pocket, 2 water bottles and a good ice pack. I could have called the cab company and maybe gotten it back.

    For neither of those things did I try to get them back because in my mind if I had deserved them I wouldn’t have lost them.
    What the fuck how do I still hate myself this much, will it ever subside? Thinking like that about myself still is just wrong and I know it.

    Tomboy seems like something for boyish people, y’know eternally a kid at heart in good way. Someone playful with a kind of androgynous-ish taste in clothes, not necessarily body. Still probably wears underthings from the women’s department bras, ladies’ underpants. Doesn’t really do dresses much.

    Butch seems clearly masculine, high pertcenage of clothes and style from the men’s department, to me but full of dimensions. I can’t pigeonhole butch the way some people do, explored that identity too much. Still it seems like grown up mature sort of thing to me, but who says mature people can’t be fun?

    Androgynous seems like a descriptor to me, but I’m not everybody

    Having grown up doing work with Spaymart as a kid, volunteered at animal shelter, sorta rescued a dog, and currently assisting fosterage of a puppy I would not wish to be reincarnated as a pet. Humans can be such assholes and vile bastards. And good people sometimes run out of money and the ability to take care of pets.
    Also fuck hamsters they’re mean little fuckers who give children nightmares and rats are much nicer.

    Sailor Moon, it should have been Sailor Moon that was the tip off. I was baseball throwing, dirt lovin, tool grabbing tomboy. Not one to want to watch something that girlie without sort of nakedness being the actual draw, but maybe the fact a friend of mine who happened to MAAB introduced me into the show detracted from that…

    This is where I confess I’m really some type of alien because I cannot stand to have anything on my hamburger, including the bun. I eat it with a fork and knife. In the beef patty I like garlic powder, lemon pepper, dried onions, and worcestershire sauce. Someday I might try lamb and do one of my mediterranean or middle eastern influenced spice arrangements on it.

      • I wouldn’t know where to post it honestly. Maybe an open thread friday someday that’s as far as I can conceive it going.

        • Well if you’re comfortable posting it I’d love to read it! Just your short response made me stomach knotty.

  31. Can we for a second talk about how there are rumors on the Internet that there is a chance Taylor Schilling and Carrie Brownstein are dating? And that Carrie and Taylor were together at Emmys this week, when neither were doing promotional stuff for their shows.

      • I nearly flipped when I saw it on my dashboard on tumblr. I am huge fan of Sleater Kinney and Carrie in general. But, her and Taylor, I am queering out big time.

      • interesting smiles and body language. Has Carrie split with Annie Clarke? I have seen photos Carrie has posted of herself with good friends Aimee Mann, Kim Gordon, and Amy Poehler also…

        • see also: i’m pretty sure i need to put some st vincent and sleater-kinney in my cd player right now

        • Carrie and Annie never confirmed it to me, and, I am a fan who doesn’t know either of them, so, I don’t know. There are some interesting photos of them both looking like a couple if you simply do a google search with both of their full names.

        • yeah, i had seen some photos at some point a while back; i was just hoping maybe there were details out there that i didn’t know about. i spose prolly if those existed there’d have been an AS article about it though. (i wasn’t trying to snark at you at all if that is how it came across.)

        • no offence taken. These are the important questions of our times and need hard evidence, which dang it, I am unable to supply.

  32. I’m going to dedicate a separate comment to this question because I have more serious and complicated feelings about it. I’d like to preface it by saying that identity terms mean different things for everyone and when I explain why one isn’t right for me, that only applies to me and anyone who does identify with it is wonderful.

    Through most of my outdom I’ve identified strongly with the term androgynous- and honestly, I am not comfortable with a some of the comments about how androgynous is mainly used by or for straight people or people who are more feminine than be. I definitely agree that androgyny in high fashion is too white and thin (but then again, what in mainstream high fashion isn’t? ).

    Butch and tomboy are great words, but they’re not who I am. My appearance, not to mention my ebbing-and-flowing chest dysphoria, would have most people in the queer community label me masculine but I very much resist that- because I don’t believe any of my traits are inherently masculine. My style, my sense of humor, or my assertiveness are not properties belonging to maleness* that I am borrowing or stealing from it, they’re just mine. That’s why I identify that way, and I love that androgynous is so open-ended I can share it with people who are completely different from me.

    • “My style, my sense of humor, or my assertiveness are not properties belonging to maleness* that I am borrowing or stealing from it, they’re just mine. ”

      Thank you! This is so well put and I really identify with the sentiment!

      • Thanks! Can’t say how awesome it feels to know something I feel and wrote clicked with somebody else.

        • Sometimes these things can be so difficult for me to put into words, too many feels, and too complex. That gets really frustrating too. It’s almost a relief to read someone else expressing it perfectly!

  33. I would come back to life as a cat. I love a lot of different animals but a cat’s life is for me. I would love to be Lynda Barry’s cat. I want to be able to read her work and maybe even talk with her but still be a cat and do cat things all the time.
    This week has been rough. Most colleges started back up but I don’t go back to school for another month. I’m kind of bored of summer. It’s pretty lonely. Most of this summer the only person I consistently talked to was my roommate. This last week for some unknown reason she isn’t communicating with me. She won’t give me more than one word responses. She doesn’t reply to texts of important questions, like figuring out rent which is due very soon and is stressing me out a lot. I don’t know why she won’t talk with me but it is very lonely and confusing.
    Good news though, I finished making a braided rug I’ve been working on forever today! It looks pretty great in my room and it felt good to accomplish something.

  34. I really really hope that someone mentions something important that they’ve lost and someone else realizes that they’ve found it. It could be the beginning of a beautiful love story.

    Friday Open Thread: Bringing you together.

  35. Robin: I love your hair it is indeed the best hair in the picture.
    -I left a pair of sapphire earrings that my mum gave me in the single bathroom at college, and it has HAUNTED ME. I realized I left them there about two hours later, and called a friend who was in the building to go look, but they were already gone :(
    Also once I didn’t buy this amazing $20 dress (vintage, dark grey silk, built in corset, with a deep green twist of velvet at the collar) because I felt bad about borrowing money from my friend, even though she offered and I had some at home and could’ve paid her back right away. It was a FOOLISH decision! TERRIBLE. I went back the next day and it was gone! This happened 8 years ago and occasionally I still regret that dress. So that’s sort of losing something that I never actually possessed, but oh well.

    Mari: The first concert I ever went to was a Tori Amos concert! So queer. So so queer.
    -A couple weeks after I came out, my friend found this old notebook of hers from fifth grade that had a little bio about each of our friends written in it. Under “dislikes” on my page, it said 1) Bananas 2) BOYS!!! (exactly like that, too!)
    When I told my mom about my first boyfriend during my junior year of high school, literally the first thing she said to me was “Well at least we know you’re not a lesbian!” Joke was on her, though!

    Kaelyn: please please please post a picture of your bun room oh my goODNESS
    -I would like to be either a lazy lazy housecat, owned by anyone with a cool house and lots of food, OR a parrotlet of some sort owned by my best friend from college. She’s studying cognition in blue jays right now, and she has about a million pets (birds and reptiles) and adores them all!

    Alley: I basically just want to read you writing about food forever and ever and ever I am very hungry now
    -I don’t really care about the patty so much, but I have high cholesterol (what the fuck I’m 25) so maybe some sort of veggie burger thing? I like veggie burger things! Anyway what I really care about is the toppings: sautéed onions and a fried egg. And I don’t know, like tomatoes and shit too but mostly FRIED EGG AHH

    Briana: You sound/look like someone who I would desperately want to be friends with but would be much too intimidated by and so I would just stare at you a little too much whenever we were in the same place, but this is the internet so you can’t see me wistfully appreciating your hair and wishing I’d attended your guys’ brunch so I could’ve been in on this terminology conversation. But I am.
    -Pretty much you said everything I think about them! Mostly I leave it up to whoever to describe themselves, but I often describe my type as butch/butchy/MOC. So basically all those words register in my brain as HOT. HOT VERY HOT. Shallow answer or shallowest answer?

    You guys, I missed last week! I was super busy working! Ah! Anyway I missed you all and I’m very glad to be back.

    In other news, I am dating someone! She’s adorable and quick and funny and so happy! And also super cute so you know, that doesn’t hurt. She texts me silly pictures of her outfits? She wrote a poem about the first time we had sex? She has an adorable little bird who she dotes on? I am just so pleased about everything. Now I just need to finally buy a goddamn car like a real adult so that I can stop borrowing my families’ cars to go sleep over at my girl-I’m-seeing-but-we-haven’t-talked-about-the-word-girlfriend-yet-person’s house.

    Work’s been going really well, and I’m doing this amazing wedding/event planning workshop in October, and (I think! The meeting went super well!) we booked another wedding for next year today! BUUUUT after October we have nothing booked until, like, April? So I’m really hoping we pick up some parties or something at the very least! Siiiiigh. ANYway, the best part of work is the flowers, so here’s some of the prettiest ones from last week’s flower market trip:

    Poppies! I love poppies but so far haven’t had a chance to use them. One day I will, and it will be a glorious day!

    Garden spray roses. So pretty I basically want to eat them.

    Queen Protea and Black Mink protea. Proteas are my favorite flower and they come in all different crazy variations, but I’d never seen the white ones before!! I love themmm

    And also I found this selfie while scrolling through my instagram looking for those flower pictures, and because Vinny’s bowtie collection is so inspiring I’m posting it. YEAH!

    You can thank that one totally rad autostraddle makeup/fashion article for the red eyeshadow.

    • You look fabulous and I will make sure to tease your lady about the poem ;-} Speaking of bow ties, the store next door to me in my building sells some fab bow-ties, belts, & suspenders for really low price(shop owners own a factory in China). My first event I co-hosted gave everyone bow ties and party gifts.

      As for the car if you need help Meg(she was a mechanic) and I(just a huge auto enthusiast) are pretty good with cars.

      • Don’t tease her TOO hard, haha! :D
        Bow tie party favors sound like the best party favors.

        And thank you! I pretty much know exactly what I want, but I need to either start looking online very seriously or just suck it up and get a newer car and deal with payments. Mostly I just want someone to decide that they don’t want their car and just give it to me so I don’t have to do any work ;)

    • omg is this the girl from a few weeks ago?? did y’all ~hit it off~??? regardless she sounds adorable and good on you!

      • She’s someone else actually! E was super lovely and adorable, but we kinda just stopped texting and we live pretty far away from each other, so ????? But I’m hoping I’ll see her at A camp at the very least because FRIENDSHIP
        Is that a thing? Is it always just super weird if you’ve been on one date and then stopped talking? My bad!!

        We actually met at the OC Straddler meet up for OC Pride! Yaaay

    • Holly is insisting that I add that the silly outfit texting is mutual. I’m also a silly outfit texter, I admit it!

    • I have very few regrets in life but relate to the “I should have bought…” with all my heart.
      I should have bought a 1970s VW beetle in 2001. I had the money, and damn I wanted it but I liked the car I had and felt that at 18 I shouldn’t have 2. The car I had died a death soon after and I ended up with a crappy replacement. The loss of that Beetle haunts me still.

    • A little bit crushed you’re now taken, Jane. But utterly thrilled that you’ve met a wonderful lady who brings joy to your life.

      So many beautiful things in your post this week.

  36. 2. I used to make up elaborate adoption scenarios for elementary/middle school “parenting” assignments* because I was somehow sure that a traditional family structure was just not in the cards so that was the only logical way I’d end up with a baby. Then again I went to a school full of gay teachers so maybe they suspected more than I give them credit for…

    *(like that one where you have to carry a bag of sugar around for a week to teach you that babies are hard work? Spoiler alert: babies in no way resemble a 5lb bag of sugar)

  37. The WNBA started when I was 14, and after a lifetime of hating sports I was suddenly obsessed with it–I’d watch all the games I could, I’d dial up to the Web to read news stories, I had posters of my favorite players. In retrospect this was kind of an obvious sign that, contrary to what everyone thought, I was neither straight nor a boy….

    • I understand that feeling so much. I was a little kid but my love of the WNBA Portland Fire was very strong. I still have some like team cards and promotional stuff somewhere in my parents house. I had a shirt and I tried to wear it every day, even when got way too small for me. Eventually my mom made me get rid of it, so I just gave it to a friend cause I couldn’t completely part with it yet.

  38. Have any queer ladies done a cover of “Kiss A Girl” by Keith Urban? Because that song just needs a queer woman to sing it so bad.

    “I wanna kiss a girl
    I wanna hold her tight
    And maybe make a little magic in the moonlight

    Don’t wanna go too far
    Just to take it slow…”

    It gets stuck in my head.
    Seriously any lady covers out there?

  39. WELCOME awesome people :) Hi other awesome people. I did AS brunch on Monday and it was super cool. Now the list.

    1. I lost almost all the Jurassic park stuff I had as a kid because bullies. Dinosaurs are cool dammit. Still sad and bitter.

    2. Age 9 Singing uptown girl (to a vinyl single) into a comb whilst trying to get my long curly hair into a quiff. (plus all the tomboy antics, TMNT toys, Bucky O’Hare toys and football)

    3. I’d be Spot from star trek TNG, because being an android’s pet would be cool, and he’d never forget to feed me.

    4. Beef burger with cheese, bacon and that smokey sweet bbq sauce that soaks into the bun.

    5. I’m not butch enough to be butch but not femme enough to be Tomboy-femme. So soft butch /tomboy I guess? I wear eye makeup but not women’s clothes. My hair is now long but not feminine and I never style it. I live in denim, camo, flannel and trainers or docs. The idea of wearing a dress or a skirt freaks me out.
    Androgyny in fashion as mentioned many times above is towards the skinny and boob lacking…which I am not, fully celebrate those who reclaim it against an industry built to instill it’s own agenda of what human beings should look and behave like. Also really hate the term “boyfriend” applied before any garment because of the connotation that women must only wear clothes in that style if they’ve borrowed it from, or are perceived to have borrowed it from their boyfriend…argh PATRIARCHY!

    I may have got the numbers out of order. Apologies.

  40. Happy Weekend Straddlers! Welcome wonderful writers!

    Spring is finally on it’s way here and for a glorious 3 days of this week we had beautiful sunshine-y weather. My parents came to stay for a night. My students and I did adventure activities for a day. I went on a 15m high, giant swing that involved pulling a self release switch, which turned out to be a terrifying and exhilarating experience. I finished the mittens I was knitting for a friend. I also introduced Lumberjanes to a rad-straight friend and felt like I was sharing an inside secret.

    In response to your questions:

    1. As I have aged I have developed a habit of losing things deliberately. I knit/sew/preserve/cook and giving these items to people I care about brings real joy to my life. It opens up amazing dialogue with people, especially as I struggle with small talk. It’s also my main way of telling someone I like them/care about them. Generally though, I don’t lose things. Everything has a place.

    2. Signs I was queer: I had a box full of decapitated, limbless imitation barbie dolls. I lost whole days playing with Lego. I stole my brothers Meccano set piece by piece after he received it for Christmas. I remember my first kiss with a boy and feeling nothing but thinking it was a pointless activity. Short hair from the age of 7, to the point that I got mistaken by a boy constantly.

    3. A green sea turtle.

    4. Burger with the lot. Beef patty, lettuce, cheese, tomato, beetroot, pineapple, egg, bacon and tomato sauce.

    5. I have NO idea what I am. I’m in the box that’s not labelled.

  41. First time on Friday open Thread!

    Lost Item: One time I lost my leather biker jacket at a concert. : < It was vintage and women's cut and I felt totally badass while wearing it. So my then girlfriend (now ex) was in the front row when the opening band stopped and the main band took the stage. She had no idea a mosh pit was going to start up, poor dear. Not only did she get caught in a rush-the-stage-periodically type of moshpit, she also got stuck next to the one douche in the whole bar who thought it was okay to "accidentally" knock people in the face with his elbow (repeatedly). She flips, starts screaming about how she's gonna kill him, I have to drag her out of the pit and then out of the bar, leaving my jacket behind.

    Signs I was Queer: I have always disliked dresses and other forms of femininity thrust upon my person, but my parents didn't have much to go by regard me being into ladies.

    Pet: Same as about 80% of the other responses, I would want to be a cat. I heard a rumor that some people don't own cats as much as they leave out survival supplies for the feral alley cats they live near. So I would want to be a feral cat with a nice person leaving me emergency supplies for the winter.

    Burger: I am a big fan of little burgers. I basically want a fast food shaped burger but made with local organic beef and a bun made by a local baker topped with red onion and ketchup. Not just one or two onions, either. Just slice a whole circle off an onion and put it one there.

    You know what. I'm gonna do that. As soon as I get paid.

    Terms: I identify as tomboy and butch freely. Androgynous I am wary of, because although I want to exist in balance between the binary genders, one sprinkle of femininity and poof! I get flirted with more, called "sweetie" or "honey" by strangers, and asked "do you need help?" repeatedly when lifting things despite that being my job. I promise you, the lip gloss does not make me unable to lift these boxes suddenly. Can't a butch wear pearls once in a while? Damn.

  42. Re: hamburgers- last night I ate a hamburger off of the McDonald dollar menu at 2:00 am and surprisingly it was everything I didn’t even know I wanted. As soon as I was done eating it I wanted like 5 more. I think it was the pickle that made it perfect. Also, I’m gonna have a hamburger for lunch that will have jalapeno peppers on it so right now my weekend is pretty much all about hamburgers and I’m happy about that!

    • I had a similar experience regarding McDonald’s hamburgers except it was this morning and it was to help my hangover. I had a real come to Jesus moment.

  43. Mari: “Wow, how can it be a surprise to ANYONE that I turned out to be queer?”

    I dunno, but as another trans woman who were obsessed with Tori Amos in pre-transition years I guess maybe it’s a thing <3

  44. 1) Apparently at the age of 10 I lost a lot of my sparkle/self-confidence/ability to interact comfortably with practically anyone? At least 2 adults in my life have noticed this. I was a really smart confident kid who had no problems talking to adults or kids my age, then when I was 10 I got into a programme for gifted kids where I was suddenly surrounded almost completely by boys and we were given a more challenging syllabus so all these kids who were used to getting full marks easily had to get used to doing less well and generally stuff was pretty left-brained. I don’t know exactly how or why I changed, but I do remember that for the first half of that first year, I was eating recess by myself, and I never had a best friend from my class like I’d always had before. I still haven’t got a lot of that stuff back.

    2) When I look back, I really can’t think of any early indication that I would turn out bi – from ages 9-12, the few crushes I had were on boys (fictional and IRL). But right after starting secondary school (at an all-girls’ school, hahaha) I developed a huge crush on my house captain and from then on I kept having crushes on girls, mostly senior students but occasionally girls from my year, so that was confusing because for 4 years I was thinking ‘am I a straight girl who sometimes has crushes on senior girls or do I actually like girls, what is my sexual orientation argh I just want to knowwwww.’ Anyway those weren’t ‘hints’ so I feel like that doesn’t really count.

    Are senior crushes a thing in girls’ schools outside Singapore?

    Apart from that, I was never classified as a ‘tomboy’ or a ‘girly girl’, except maybe the books I liked reading as a kid were mostly classified as ‘boys’ books’ (pfft). Also my favourite colour has always been blue (my name is kind of a variation on a word for blue and apparently even as a baby I liked blue), but it never really occurred to me that blue was supposed to be a ‘boy colour’. Then again, when I came out to my family when I was 18, my mum said she wasn’t that surprised because I’d always been kinda masculine somehow. I dunno.

    WAIT, when I was about 12 I developed a liking for men’s shirts. Also when I started secondary school, I was always picked to play the boy in skits because I had a low voice (despite being short and looking nothing like a boy), and I always enjoyed/still enjoy playing a guy onstage.

    3) I would 100% be a cat because when I was in secondary school and stressed out all the time I would look at my cat lazing around and sleeping at all hours and literally wish I was her. Plus I am independent and misanthropic and I would also love to be a majestic graceful possibly-terrifying being.

    OH or maybe a free dolphin in a safe clean area of the sea, because they’re cool and really intelligent? Oh wait they’re not pets.

    5) I have no idea what I’d describe my gender expression as. I don’t like wearing skirts or dresses, but when I ‘have’ to for formal events or performances (I sing in operas & concerts) I quite enjoy wearing dresses/heels/makeup/etc. I guess my normal style is feminine/non-masculine enough to not seem gender-nonconforming, but other than that idk. I can’t find a label for it.

  45. 1. I forgot that I lost a ring that I got in Cambodia until now! D:<

    It was from Friends Restaurant- it's made of a flattened spoon. The restaurant from memory employs disadvantaged youth. They also serve tarantula (I had one, it was delicious).

    I'm quite fussy with jewellery (needs to be few-frills, subtle and 'androgynous) and usually dislike rings but this one was boss.

    It may or may not still be around, I haven't looked too hard. I tend to not stress until I have to.

    Other things I have loved and lost = lovers that could have been the greatest of friends after. But maybe there's still a chance to find them. Early days.

    2. Signs I was queer:

    -a love of drag from a young age. And nothing's changed, because here I am recently-ish enjoying having to dress as a boy for a show I was drumming in (a gay man in the audience for the show was sure I was indeed a boy)

    This is not so much gay related as a nod to occasional genderqueerness at times. But I think it tied in to internalised ideas about what I thought it meant to be a boy vs be a girl, and I was a LOT more ‘boyish’ and didn’t understood the stereotypical girl life at all (including loving boys, as it turned out). I’ve had moments when I’ve felt profoundly GQ but these days I’m happy to be vaguely MOC some days and wear a dress on others (occasionally)- but I still enjoy drag a lot.

    -a childish fascination with this attractive older girl in Calisthenics (back during the only time in my life I’ll ever don a leotard / be remotely flexible). I remember some innocent dream about saving her from a car crash. I must have been like between 5-8 when I had this.

    3. Person’s pet: I want to be the pet of someone famous. Let’s just pick Will Smith. And a dog, because everyone loves dogs.

    4. Asking me to pick what I want to eat is never a good idea because it’s a 230928 hour process- and ‘perfect patty’ would change ofte depending on my mood. So let’s just move right along for everyone’s sake! That one you mentioned sounded fucking boss though.

    5. butch = I like this, feel like this term is barely claimed by young people these days, seems ‘classic’ to me, something I’ll never inhabit because it’s tougher than I ever feel I could be perceived (whether or not I’d enjoy being perceived as such).

    androgynous = I like this. I like it like I like queer, although it’s more defined. But it’s also not. I can be androgynous at times and move either way depending on what I wear and whether I’m wearing eyeliner. I like the flexibility.

    Tomboy = I like it but it doesn’t feel like a term you could take with you through your life. It’s inherently young. And some part of it.. hmm. I don’t want to be defined by my relationship to ‘boy’-ness and masculine things- I want to claim these things I liked (climbing trees, battling box tower monsters with sticks as swords, trying valiantly/unsuccessfully to be the world’s best rollerblader a la Mighty Ducks 2) as being equally what it means to be a girl or woman than what it means to be a boy or a man.


    Because this is Friday Open thread I think I’ll do life updates too:

    things are good!

    -I talked a while ago about going to court for civil disobedience/a sit-in around the issue of children in detention. This was interesting. We represented ourselves, so had a chance to say speeches in court about our motivations for taking part. It was all quite an emotional experience and also really powerful and moving for a lot of people in the room I believe.

    And in the end, the magistrate, poker faced until the last minute, said we were inspiring and he had no problem letting us go sans conviction or penalty! So that’s rad!

    And then I was supporting someone else in their court case (same action, different court date) and decided to eat an apple that morning thinking no cameras were there and they WERE and now I’m on television munching on this apple.

    -The little kid school drum ensemble I teach has a new name and we’re getting new drums and they’re going to be SAMBA DRUMS because of a brainwave I had recently! Light to march with, chance to learn about other cultures, sound good YAY!

    -I bought a new drum and it’s coming in the mail from Germany and is sexy as hell.

    That’s that for now. Thanks for reading, tell me your things


      • Thankyou! I didn’t realise how truly cheery I looked until I watched. I suppose you don’t generally watch yourself eating apples very often.

  46. These are great questions! Like icebreakers, but way better.

    1. Like an idiot I lost my phone in a cab in Ireland the night before I left to come back home. But I got it back! Mostly because my friend Amy happened to be traveling there the next day and she is a force to be reckoned with.

    2. When I was small, maybe four, my mom’s best friend took me to the park across the street to play on the monkey bars, which was my favorite thing. After a little while a group of boys a little older than I was came and kind of took over the playground. I turned to Marilee and said very solemnly “Boys ruin everything.”

    I don’t remember any of this but I laughed the first time she told me that story.

    3. As for coming back as a pet, I’d say a dog at my friends Shana and Alexis’ house. At max capacity since I’ve known them they’ve had two dogs, three cats and a tiny, tiny dwarf rabbit to rule them all, and they take amazing care of their animals and are pretty fantastic people to be around. I’ve only ever had rabbits and they have a special place in my heart, but I think I’d choose to be a dog myself for the walks. And running through the woods off leash and smelling stuff everywhere sounds like a great way to spend an afternoon.

    4. Perfect burger is such a tough one! There’s a bar here that does a burger special on Wed nights: 4 oz patty with a different set of toppings every week, perfectly toasted house-made bun and house-made chips, 10oz pour of beer, and different spiced popcorn appetizer while you wait, all for $10. It’s the perfect amount of food for me to eat after aerial classes since I can’t eat much before. I only recently discovered it and I know this is kind of a cop out for not picking one but I’m going to say this is my perfect burger situation.
    Also, patties that combine ground chuck and short rib. Those are fantastic.

    5. I don’t have problems with any of those terms personally–I think there’s such a spectrum of queerness that it would be nice if we could come up with a wider spectrum of words to describe us. I’d never heard the phrase “tomboy femme” before I stumbled upon Autostraddle but more and more I think that’s how I would choose to label myself. Basically, if I could get away with wearing clothes only purchased at REI I would (hello, lesbian stereotype, how ya doin) but I do sometimes wear a dress and heels and makeup for special occasions and though I may grumble a little I don’t mind it. Also New Balance makes heels now and I totally picked those out at the store without realizing that’s what they were :)

  47. h’ok, so. yesterday this required a little more mental energy than i felt up to spending, but this afternoon i’ve gotten to sit and watch a thunderstorm, and i am ready to play now!

    1) i think the thing i felt saddest about losing was maybe my first ipod with my name engraved on the back. i get overly attached to things and have strong feelings about music, so it was quite the loss! fortunately my mom is a big music nerd too and felt my pain, so she bought me a replacement.

    2) this is kinda one of my favorite things to think about. i didn’t realize i liked girls ’til like 2 years ago, so i’m always wondering what signs i missed. i was laughing not that long ago about how preoccupied i always was with the relationship statuses of whatever female singer i was into at the time. i remember combing the liner notes of my pat benatar tapes as like a six year old, looking for clues about her personal life.

    it makes me laugh and roll my eyes too remembering what a self-righteous little prat i was in jr high and high school. i totally didn’t understand why people couldn’t control themselves around boys since i had no issues with it at all. HMM.

    3) aw. i would go back in time and be one of my grandmother’s cats. she spoiled the mess out of them, and her house had lots of good sunny spots to laze in. plus, they were indoor/outdoor, so none of that litter box business going on. litter boxes are gross, y’all.

    4) i’m pretty enthusiastic about avocado on my hamburger these days. i think one of the best burgers i’ve ever made myself involved a fried egg, spinach, tomato, and avocado.

    5) not super long after i came out to myself, i went on this date with this (really cute) girl from okcupid, and at some point during conversation, she asked me if i was butch. the question left me so at a loss, and i felt so completely flustered around her to begin with that i didn’t answer at all. i think she must have thought i was kind of a weirdo. i’m a lot more comfortable with myself now than i was at that point–i’m pretty sure i wouldn’t entirely dodge that question anymore!–but i’m still not sure what my answer is exactly. i don’t really think of myself as quite masculine enough for butch to feel right. people’s complimentary adjective of choice as far as my appearance seems to be “adorable,” and while it’s not really my favorite thing to be called, it does highlight the fact that “tough” isn’t really part of my persona. as for tomboy, in my head, that’s what i was as a little kid playing football at recess. i’ve used androgynous some for lack of anything that felt better. i’m not really too interested in the idea of dichotomy. i am, however, real interested in figuring out how i feel most comfortable dressing / presenting myself. not quite there yet. relatedly, i guess, i am down with people using those words or whatever other ones seem the most right in terms of describing themselves. i have mixed feelings about people choosing any about me – it’s fine, but i’m probably gonna want to know why they chose what they did.

    …now, having written what felt like approximately 8 million words, i am going to decline to proofread it in favor of wandering into my kitchen to try to find something that isn’t a brownie to tempt my hunger. (i have totally eaten things besides brownies today. cough cough cough. really.)

    • ‘i totally didn’t understand why people couldn’t control themselves around boys since i had no issues with it at all. HMM.’ – this!

  48. 1. When I was 4 I lost my action figure of the girl from TMNT on a plane (I looked it up and I think her name is April). I remembered being really sad and looking for her once people got off the plane with my mom. We never found her.
    2. I think this is the one about “gay signs.” I don’t think it was super obvious, even to myself, but I was in love with so many older girls when I was a kid: camp counselors (I can still remember my crush when I was like 8), my older sister’s friends, team captains….yup. Also when Bend it Like Beckham came out, I saw it in theaters and the scene where the Keira Knightley’s mom thinks they’re in a lesbian relationship kind of hit me like woah. I don’t think I had really been introduced to or had processed gayness before.
    3. I would be a cat because they can do whatever they want and can be self-sufficient if they feel like it.
    4. Some kind of guac/avocado, fried egg, onion, on a black bean burger maybe? I’m really more of a fries person. I’m crazy about good shoestring fries.
    5. The term tomboy kind of bugs me because of presumed gender roles, especially when it’s being used to describe children. But that’s just me, people can use it whatever way they want.

    I hope that everyone’s having a great weekend!

    • I was obsessed (still am) with Bend it Like Beckham (I read the book and kept renewing it) and that scene where Keira Knightley pulls up her top on the football pitch and she’s in her sports bra was probably a little *too* interesting to me haha

  49. 1. One thing I remember is that I totally had an original Optimus Prime figure which was lost in a move, to my enduring sadness.
    2. As a young person, I took EVERY opportunity I could find to dress as a female. I didn’t know what it meant, and clearly my family didn’t either. It’s just like, seriously?
    3. I would want to be a dog, either a Pembroke Welsh Corgi like my little Phoebe, or a border collie. I’d want my owner to be my friend Kyle and his family. They have a good sized plot of land with horses and a miniature donkey(!), and know how to treat dogs.
    4. I may have had it today. Dublin O’Neil’s wild boar fennel sausage. It was served patty style on a bun with onions and the best mustard sauce ever. I want more, forever. Just perfect.
    5. As a decidedly femme trans woman,I struggle a bit with these terms. When talking to straight friends, I’ll mention someone who presents in a gender queer manner, and then I have to explain what that means. Don’t get me started on non binary folks. I live everyone on the gender non conforming spectrum, but it’s like I’m breaking people’s brains here!
    Anyway, like I said,I struggle a bit with these terms, afraid that a cis woman will rankles if I call her butch. I have the biggest crush on a woman right now who dresses in a kind of butch way, but I don’t really know how she identifies. It’s also troubling because the meanings really do vary from place to place. Some terms I’m familiar with from this and other queer web spaces haven’t entered the local vernacular, so it gets even more complicated. So, ask I’d that probably means I have no clear answer.
    Also, my crush complimented my outfit the other day (I was like super witchy femme, y’all. I love it) and she said that she wished she could pull off such things, but she wouldn’t be comfortable. I didn’t know what to say, really. She totally could pull it off, but if it made her uncomfortable, I guess that would be how I feel when I’m not “passing.” It just seemed strange, she dresses well, and seems confident in what I thought was her being butch. But now I don’t know. Anyway, I want to make her brunch forever and always but I can’t tell if she’s interested! Long. Drawn out.Sigh.

    Also,I went to the Bristol Renaissance Faire last weekend. So fun and amazing. I didn’t really have a costume so I grabbed a bunch of scarves and a frilly top and full skirt and kind of shot for a pirate/gypsy sort of thing. I’m second from the left in this pic:

  50. I’d want to be my ex-girlfriend’s cat, because that thing gets to be an asshole to her every day.

    I mean, I’m totes over her.

  51. 1) I lost my marbles literally. It was my prized asset at the time. I think my cousin stole them when I stayed over at theirs. 11 years later and I’m still lamenting over the loss of those rainbow- galaxies-in a- plasticky-glass-ish-ball-thingy. Woe.

    2) Everybody but ME knew I was gay. Then there was this girl, and that one, and I still didn’t know I was. I mean I thought it was my tomboyish phase thing. Then came the butterflies with that girl who had my brain in absolute tatters. Yeah…that one. *sighs*

    3) I’d like a cat who was almost like me. I have a lot of off days and some great fays. I’d name him Sir Boobs-A-Lot. (Shared interests mwahah). I’m sure when I if I got one, we’d probably hiss and scratch over boundaries and sofa space.

    4) I think it would an injustice to all the other burgers I’ve had a thing or two with. I love my food. I don’t want to hurt any burgers feelings.

    5) I don’t mind nor do I have any problems with those terms. However it’s attached to being young y’know? Makes me feel young, to be honest. The term butch scares me, my mind automatically pictures myself with a voice deeper than Mariana’s Trench. I need to breathe. Androgynous I love. I think I’ll shut up now and go make some tea. yes, we british love the wonders of a good cup of tea.

  52. 1. I lost my mom. She died when I was 9 years old. She taught me what love is.
    2. 4 years ago a soft, sweet, tender butch made love to me. Our girl kisses put me in an almost helpless feeling of existing only in those kisses…. the rest of the world disappeared. When we made love in bed the first time, tears came to my eyes being intimate with her girl to girl. I knew then I was a lesbian.
    3. I will be a lab pup. Gnaw on your furniture, Carry your shoe out in the yard. Bark at noises in the night……..and snuggle beside you in bed, love you always…. unconditionally, and always be there to lift your spirit!
    4. No cheeseburger, cheeseburger, cheeseburger! No! Old fashioned…. beef, tomatoes, lettuce, onions, mustard, bun! If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
    5. I am a girl who loves girls who know what real love is…. that connection of two generous and compassionate females who share love with understanding of each other’s real self.

    • That is the most beautiful description of a “I knew then” lesbian moment I have ever read or probably will read. You lost your momma too early cher, but the time y’all had she clearly taught you well. Must have been a wonderful woman.

  53. 1. Despite being a rather orderly person, I lose things a lot right now. The one thing I wish I could find right is my pair of converse one star sneakers.I moved back to South Carolina from New York recently because I have ailing relatives (in fact, one just died on Friday. The funeral is tomorrow). My life is in a storage locker and what I absolutely have to have is stuffed into my childhood bedroom. Sometimes I sleep there, sometimes I sleep where I am now (in the tiny extra room at my grandparents’) until I find a place.

    2. Everyone about me screamed “QUEER” from the word go. From my inability to sit right in dresses to my abysmal failures in ballet to my love of playing in mud in nice church dresses. I screamed it loud enough to get myself thrown into conversion therapy at 12.

    3. I love cats. I love all animals really, but cats are my soulmates. I’d come back as a cat and have a couple of lesbian cat ladies be my pet parents.

    4. Funny you should mention patties! I had a salmon burger patty topped with Accent flavoring for dinner with a side of brussels sprouts. No bun- I’m going carb free for the moment.

    5. I usually go with androgynous for public explanations. It’s just easier, because most people know what it means, and it doesn’t bring up long, annoying conversations and assumed stereotypes. I’ve also been flirting with some femme stylings lately. I started carrying a purse, and I am kind of getting into some fashion type stuff. I actually really like some of Rachel Zoe’s style ideas (please don’t hate me for this lol). As for having a problem with terminology? People can call or not call themselves whatever, as that is none of my business and up to each individual.

      • Thanks so much! Things are always rocky when the sole reason for doing something is to quell chaos like my move was. It will get better. The shoes are probably buried in a box in the storage locker lol. At least I hope so…

  54. In direct response to Erin:

    I lost faith in people and the belief that I would ever love someone and thanks to my girlfriend that has been totally turned around!

    Other things that I’ve lost:
    Time. Huge amounts of time of my life without actually having lived.
    Friends. Some I have reconnected with but it hasn’t been the same.

    I would come back as a bird. I’d fly all over the damn place and satisfy my wanderlust.

    Terminology. Language can be so damn tricky. As others have said, whatever you identify as, go you! You rock!

    I used to identify with ‘tomboy’ but then as I got older felt that the connotation was a girl that was trying to act like a boy and found that rather distasteful. Because of everything Audrey wrote about masculinity. I like the word androgynous despite the fact that I have an association of that word with the extremely horrible SNL character Pat, which basically exemplifies the typical trope. I basically want to be androgynous but feel that my curvy body won’t allow that to happen. Also, I look ghastly with really short hair. No cute short alt. hair cuts for me. Not being androgynous is a source of unhappiness for me! :(

  55. 2. Sooo, when I was in the 3rd grade, I was the only girl on the basketball court playing with all the boys. All the rest of the girls were busy, I don’t know, giggling and trying to impress the boys by looking cute which I thought was *STUPID*. I had no idea why they cared so much…and then I kind of realized how much attention I was paying to the girls. It took me a little longer to figure out why. ;)

    4. Right now, I really want to try a grilled cheese burger. With bacon. Bacon makes everything better.

  56. 2. Oh, where do I start? I probably should have realised far earlier than I did.
    I put on a magic show for this girl who was a year older than me when I was in primary school and was upset when her brother came round with her because I really really really wanted her to be my best friend.

    There was the time I saw a poster for Charlie’s Angels, saw Lucy Liu and demanded for a week that my sister take me to see it even though I was way too young.

    Drooling over Xena.

    Watching Sugar Rush in my bedroom with one hand on the remote control in case my mum walked in.

    Getting my Barbie dolls confiscated because I tried to cut off her boobs, put her in Ken’s clothes and wanted her to get married with the cool skater Barbie doll (Tori).

    Whining in my diary when I was 10 about how all my friends liked boys now and I didn’t understand why because I played football with them and they weren’t anything special.

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