Haircuts, Masculinity, and Me

I’ve been thinking about growing my hair out. Since 14, I’ve been slowly cutting it back, with the exception of senior year of high school, when I donned an afro that left people sitting behind me in class frustrated. These days, it’s shaved on the sides, with a fade at the top that I sometimes allow to grow to a length such that one ringlet of a curl can be seen. My journey with hair has been, well, arduous. As a child, it was my telltale giveaway that I was assigned female at birth. My grass-stained jeans and backwards cap […]

A Vote Against Vote Courting

I loathe election season. The former-wanting-to-be-president child within me would scream if they heard adult me utter those words, but here we are. We have a dozen candidates for president, the cycle of pandering ads with dramatic effects is just starting, and I am completely over it. Former teenage anarchist cobwebs aside, I am here to remind those seeking to be elected into office of something that has increasingly become imperative to me. I am not seeking to be courted. While I get to spend the next year of my life listening to people who have never met me – […]

America’s Pastime and Me

I remember getting my first baseball glove. I was five, and it was from Kay-Bee Toys. Growing up there was a vacant lot between my house and our neighbor’s to the right, so every spring and summer I would drag cinder blocks across the grass and make a diamond. Sometimes I would get the other kids in the neighborhood to play a full pick-up game with me, but usually it was just my brother, father, and myself. When I was ten, I begged my parents to buy me a tee-ball set, but only because it had a genuine rubber home […]

An Open Letter to Parents of Queer Teens

When I came out (three times!) my parents were immediately supportive. Support is easy, love is easy. Unconditional love of a child and understanding that child are profoundly different. Teenagers today have a vast wealth of information and resources available with one click. When I was first trying to figure out myself, I spent hours on an extinct chat-advice site with other people just as confused as myself. Dial-up connection, way too much Mountain Dew, and my teenage angst, furiously scrolling in the hopes of making sense of everything within my brain. The information scope of today is beyond what […]

On Yearbooks, Memories, and Trans-Disconnect

The early 2000s. A mixed bag of gender identity / sexual orientation / hobbies left teenage me scrambling to find more than a couple people who understood me in anything more than simplistic terms. I was able to cultivate a handful of friendships that withstood the volatile mess that most of my 20s were, and while grateful to have those people still in my life, the more removed I am from my teenage years, the more I feel a physical wall between my present and my past My reality is one where the person who lives in my old yearbooks […]

Pencils, Paper, Backpacks, and …… Liberties for queer students

As the August nights begin to chill it means that back-to-school season is upon us. You cannot escape the displays, school lists and giant adverts of pencils and apples that have popped up in stores and online. Even if you’re decades removed from your own schooling, it is impossible to wade through the latter half of August and not remember the smell of new school supplies and shoes. Picking out the best outfit and packing your new backpack to the brim, and anxiously awaiting seeing your friends while wondering which teachers live up to their reputations. Young me usually spent […]

A Reluctant Case of Change

Change is an inescapable part of being human. Whether it is little changes, like expanding one’s taste in food or music to outside of their normal go-to, or even a big change, such as moving to a new city, all changes impact us differently. I have friends who have up and moved cross-country with what to me seems like minimal planning, and completely thrived in their new surroundings. The phrase “creature of habit” does not do me justice. There was a week straight where I ate Burger King for every meal, and while I am not proud to admit that, […]

How Lizzo is Bringing More than an Award Show’s House Down

My wife and I watched Lizzo’s performance from the MTV Movie and TV awards a combined 30 times this week. My YouTube now has a row entitled “Watch Again,” which consists of just that video. I have at least a dozen albums that are not a part of our music subscription’s licensing that I enjoy playing along to, and an unhealthy and longstanding obsession with The Lonely Island’s videos, and the only video that has ever prompted this new category is Lizzo. I love both the homage to Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit. Alli is far less a […]

Late Night Dates and Nostalgia

Every night is the same in my life. After we put the pup to bed in his crate for the night, we head upstairs for our own nightly unwind before bed. Usually, since I work until 11, we are also scarfing down our dinner as we slowly transition. Part of our ritual is vehemently searching for something to watch. Currently, we are caught up on most everything we watch and until our summer shows begin again, we are usually watching “Judge Judy” videos on Youtube while my wife suggests literally anything else. Usually she suggests movies, which is a quagmire, […]

Communal Pride

Less than 24 hours ago, I was sitting in a room with a dozen and a half other trans and enby [non-binary] folks from the Delaware-Virginia-Maryland area and I found myself feeling homesick. Homesick is the incorrect word. I was surrounded by the most trans and enby folks I have ever been around at the same time, and seeing each and every one of these amazing people shine and share their stories and triumphs was something that I have not been able to see in person in my activism and advocacy. I was the lone Western Marylander, and I realized […]