On becoming a lesbian

This one written by moi.

I still think, is this plausible? Will women tell me, no. You are mistaken.

But people are always telling each other they are mistaken about themselves.

This doesn’t feel like an identity. This feels like all the little pieces falling into place. The aberrations from what I thought was my path are now part of my path.

That’s what really strikes me, how well it all fits together, all these little things.

The friendships with heterosexual women that always ended when I felt like I was being used. The dodging around and through men, working to ally with sexually unavailable ones, and occasionally driving myself into bed with those who were available, to no avail.

Always drawing away to the men, women were too scary. Always too scary. Tormenting me on playgrounds as a child, later in high school, because I did not do the work required. I did not center the boys when with girls. I wondered at the girls, I tried to follow. But the boys were always an abstraction when I was around girls.

Other times the boys seemed like potential brothers, older brothers, and I would have liked to have older brothers, protectors. And I spent many years looking for older brothers, protectors. I am the oldest in all my family lines of my generation, and my fathers did not protect. I could have used some help.

But they always wanted sex, or if they did not, they suggested me to their friends. So I learned to dodge, to form attachments to unavailable men, sometimes painful ones. Often painful ones. All this not-knowing, while also yes-knowing, that I was engaging in an elaborate dance of avoidance of women.

Because women, I was groomed to believe, are all about sex. Sex sex mandatory sex, this is not optional, no matter with whom you do it.

It was like trying to hike through this endless labyrinth of canyons and mountains in the desert, looking for a path to somewhere, maybe somewhere in these mountains a home, maybe at least an occasional oasis, a spring. Someone to maybe help explain all this to me, because surely this is not all there is? This ongoing alienation and searching and wondering and it never being right and always blowing up in my face sooner or later, this caldera of my emotional life.

In the early 1980’s, I worked with a young woman, an out lesbian woman. She was great. We should have been friends. But I didn’t know how, because sex sex sex everything sex and no no no.

I think of Leslie a lot these days. I hope she made it. I hope she’s still around, aging like me, and thinking of her past. I hope she found love, and joy and purpose in her life. I hope she still has that. I hope she didn’t get eaten. I wish I could remember her surname. If I could paint with my eyes, I could draw her for you.

I am not very good at ending things. I always want to keep going with the story, new chapters, new beginnings, new becomings. But this is just a blog post, so here it ends, for now. Just for now.


Germaine Greer. Pointing out the bleeding obvious.

Critiquing Transgender Doctrine & Gender Identity Politics

Originally published at Flavourmag

If you’ve had your head inside a blusher brush since you were ten then you may not be aware that Germaine Greer is a feminist icon. A giantess. She did it all and she did it a long time ago and feminists owe her a ton of stuff. Still with me? Focus. The latest 500 reasons to use skin primer will still be here on Flavourmag when you get back.

Germaine was no-platformed for her “transphobic” views. On Newsnight she was asked whether she thought transgender women were women. She said no. She said it was an opinion. You should see that interview. Watch it below. It is one of the finest examples of someone giving an interview, where they say what they really think about a controversial topic, that you will ever see.

Continue reading…

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Feminism-it’s for everyone!


One of the best things about writing a radical feminist blog which is read by about eleven people on a good day is that I can say whatever I want. Fuck it, no one’s reading. The only people who will be are other radical feminists and the occasional hate-read from radiqueer sparklefucks, and as these people are internet people, and not real people, I don’t particularly care about how these ideas are received.

This is markedly different from real life, where I am subject to censure and sanctions for speaking my mind. Where I often find myself appealing to less radical female friends or the occasional dude that “patriarchy is damaging for ALL of us” and “men are damaged too under male supremacy!” and other things that I honestly couldn’t give a third of a shit about.

Women are expected to do this Dance of Appeasement whenever they express a…

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Lesbians in the News – 30 October 2015

Listening to Lesbians

Lesbians in the News 30 October 2015

Guyana loses Woman of Courage Zenita Temall Nicholson

Guyanese LGBT activist, Zenita Temall Nicholson died on October 26th. Temall Nicholson was honoured last year by the US Embassy in Georgetown as an International Woman of Courage. She was the Country Coordinator for Caribbean Vulnerable Communities/PANCAP Global Fund, and past Secretary on the SASOD Board of Trustees (Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination, Guyana).

On presentation of the Woman of Courage award in March 2014, Temall Nicholson was described as being “an energetic, effective and passionate advocate at both the national and international levels for the principle that both women’s rights and the rights of lesbian, gays, bi – sexual and transgender persons are human rights, deserving of equal attention and protection”.

Guyana remains the only country in South America where homosexuality remains illegal and is punishable by imprisonment, with additional laws

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The Closure of Eaves

Karen Ingala Smith

planet of the apes

October 30th, ten weeks after the death of its Chief Executive, Denise Marshall, Eaves closed down. In just a few weeks, the women’s sector has suffered a double loss, of Denise herself and then of Eaves, the organisation she shaped and led. 38 years of expertise in delivering services for women by women is simply gone.

I worked at Eaves from 2004 to 2009 before I  became the Chief Executive of nia.  Denise, like me, was a proudly working class feminist Chief Executive. Eaves, like nia, was a service provider with a political vision, supporting women to escape from and deal with the results of men’s violence whilst committed to policy and structural change for women. Eaves and nia were two of the few remaining women’s charities that were unashamedly feminist and unafraid to say it: feminist, secular and abolitionist. We recognise that men’s violence…

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My favorite part is the wolves

The Year of Black Clothing

Revel’s new favorite book is about animals and ecosystems and when you turn the page it makes the sounds of the animals. The quality of the sound is terrible of course but you can still make out the flapping of bat wings, the songs of the summertime insects, and tigers roaring. He asks us to read it almost every night.

His favorite part is the tiger with it’s orange stripes and sharp teeth. It’s a great page, the roar is really satisfying and loud and I can see why he likes it so much. But it’s not my favorite one.

My favorite part is the wolves.

On the wolf page the sky in the picture is purplish-blue and there is a huge silver moon painted low over some rocky, craggy looking hills. The wolves are gray and white and they are clustered in a small half circle with their faces…

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The Advocate: Anti-Hate, Pro-Stupidity


(TW: Another blog about Greer/long/not nice.)

The human brain’s default setting is stupid.

We like our politics, pop culture, and discourse around anything of import to be stupid to suit our stupid fucking brains. Really, for some, it’s not that they’re incapable of being stupid, it’s just that stupid feels better: critical thinking, self awareness, studying history, reading books – these can each be uncomfortable, downright painful experiences.

And if you’re thinking to yourself, “Gee, it’s really mean of her to say people are stupid,” then you’re fucking stupid, too.

The reason I’m talking about stupidity, and the publicly verifiable fact that most people are stupid, is that when I saw The Advocate op-ed about Germaine Greer, all I could think was, “Holy fuck this writer is stupid and every single person who agreed with the conceit of this article is stupid, too.”

I mean, let’s not mince words. The…

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Baltimore OUTLoud, Retract Your Endorsement Of Child Sexual Abuse And Apologize

What was Baltimore OUTloud editor Jim Becker thinking when he published an editorial, State Power: A Friend We Should Do Without, lamenting the criminalization of adult sexual encounters with minor children? The unsigned editorial declared, emphasis ours:

“… Also back then, a teenaged boy having sex with a man – sometimes for money, sometime not – was, at least in some working-class communities, an accepted rite of passage and something to enjoy. Now experiences like this bring harsh penalties, with the youths being seen as abused and victimized. This is a new construct arising in part from the emasculation of boys and the victimization narrative that is the central justification for state intervention.

“… Certainly, in this current age where sex abuse is seen everywhere, where all sex between a teenager and an older person is labeled pejoratively as “pedophilia,” and where sex-offender registries, civil confinement and other so-called protection tools of the state proliferate, sexual liberation and sex affirming communities are on the run.

“… The new buzzwords are sex trafficking and campus sexual assaults, but it is the same anti-sex narrative that allows the coercive arm of the state to intrude with devastating consequences …”
We can hardly imagine a more dangerous sentiment to emerge from the gay community’s own media than this dismissal of the financially, psychologically, and emotionally coercive aspects of adults raping those too young to consent, minimizing the harm of sexual assault, or casually praising child sex trafficking.

Hateful people have been accusing members of the GLBT community of criminal behavior and intentions for as long as any of us have been alive. Where straight men have even been known to be acquitted of statutory rape by unfairly convincing the courts to blame their female victims, just a rumor of improper intentions towards children can still get a non-heterosexual person targeted for vigilante attacks.

This is not the road the gay community’s press should be leading us down. There’s nothing at the end but a cliff.

Stand with us today to insist that Baltimore OUTloud retract this article and apologize.

Petition may be signed here.

School for sexism

language: a feminist guide

This week, it was announced that schools in England are being issued with new guidelines on combatting sexism and gender stereotyping. This initiative follows research conducted for the Institute of Physics (IoP), which found that most schools took sexism less seriously than other kinds of prejudice and discrimination. According to the IoP’s report,

All the schools had policies to counter racist, homophobic and sexist language. However, in almost all cases, infringements in the last case were treated less seriously than the other two. Often, during a visit, the Senior Leadership Team would assert that there was no problem with sexist language, only for the classroom teachers to refer to some cases and the students to report that it was an everyday reality. Such language was often dismissed as ‘harmless banter’, but many of the students, particularly girls, did not see it as such, and, in extreme cases, it verged…

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Flamenco Bank Flash Mob

“Flamenco is perhaps Spain’s most alluring cultural phenomenon, characterised by the stereotypes of sun, passion and tumbling black hair. Political protest and social activism are less likely to come to mind when thinking of flamenco, but for some performers it has always been a powerful tool for voicing political protest.

Never more so than today. Spain has suffered immensely in the global economic crisis – especially Andalusia, the southernmost region of the country most associated with flamenco. Neoliberalism has taken its toll on the Spanish people, who are suffering one of the highest levels of unemployment in Europe. In 2011, this led to the infamous 15M (indignados) protest movement that mobilised millions of citizens across the country to challenge policies of austerity following the banking crisis.

On the back of this movement, the flashmob group Flo6x8 has rebranded flamenco as a powerful political weapon. This anti-capitalist group has been well publicised for its political performances that have taken place in banks and even the Andalusian parliament. Using the body and voice as political tools, the group carries out carefully choreographed acciones (actions) in front of bemused bank staff and customers. These performances are recorded and then posted online, attracting a huge number of views.”

See link for awesome video.