Casting Stone Butch Blues

Did you know that Stone Butch Blues is out of print? How is that possible, when every dyke in America has at least two copies on her bookshelf?

The novel was published by FireBrand Press in 1993. It was picked up by Alyson Books in 2003. In early 2013, Feinberg announced on her Tumblr page that the book would be permanently out of print, but made to order copies would be available by request on her website.

This is utter garbage, of course; Stone Butch Blues should sell more copies on a yearly basis than On The Road and Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas combined. You’ve read it, of course (it’s about the travels of a working-class butch/gender outlaw named Jess, OF COURSE YOU’VE READ IT) and, like me, you long only for the day when the all-butch cast list for the big-budget film adaptation is announced. In the meantime, let us argue furiously about who deserves to put on Jess’ suit and tie. Jess Goldberg This one was obviously the toughest! My first thought was Ruby Rose, after that amazing “Break Free” video about gender identity she posted last week, but she’s just too beautiful to convincingly pull off a working-class union organizer, I fear. We need Hephaestus, not Apollo.

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Then I thought of Daniela Sea, partly as an apology for what they did to Max on The L Word, and partly because she’s, you know, tawny and masculine like a minor god, but she’s not a strong enough actress to carry a film, I think.

daniela

Then my friend Sara reminded me — “What about our girlfriend, Rain Dove Dubilewski?” And the heavens parted, and a shower of gold coins fell into my lap, and I knew in my heart she was right. Of course. Jess is a character who convincingly reads as male among steelworkers and blue-collar union members — she needs to have a commanding physical presence.

Rain Dove Dubilewski (my girlfriend) is 6’3 and looks like this.

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Bird of the Month: The Acorn Woodpecker

Previous Birds of the Month can be found here.

It is dangerous to slam a portion of your body into a hard surface 15 times a second, with a force 1,000 times that of gravity. You or I could not do it. Yet acorn woodpeckers, like the 200 or so other species in the woodpecker family, are so extraordinarily designed that for them it is as relaxing a pastime as idling in a park. Here is one about to start hammering:

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Male acorn woodpecker

A woodpecker’s beak is extremely strong, and built so it absorbs the impact of the hammering rather than transferring it to the bird’s organs or muscles. Its brain is small relative to the size of its body, and positioned so that it has maximum contact with (and therefore is maximally protected by) its unusually thick skull. Woodpeckers also have a thick third eyelid, which closes a fraction of a second before each stroke of the bill, in order to protect the eyes from the splinters that fly from the tree as the bird drills away.

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How To Tell If You’re In Lesbian Pulp Fiction

Previously in this series.

You are living intimately with another young girl in a French military barracks.

You become curiously fascinated with your fiancé’s aunt.

You keep a woman’s portrait in a cigarette box on your dressing table and brush away all inquiries about her identity.

You meet a woman with her hair tumbled like a young boy’s.

You seduce a young girl in your sorority, and when you are caught, you try to have her institutionalized.

Sex with your boyfriend is the most miserable and disgusting thing that’s ever happened to you.

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A Day In the Life of a Forensic Pathologist

I’m running late this morning; I barely have time to print out a list of the day’s cases before rushing into morning report. The small conference room is packed with day shift investigators, autopsy assistants, the medical student rotating here this month, one of the two forensic pathologists doing autopsies today (I am the other one), and the file boxes, broken chairs, and assorted detritus permanently stored in the room. I slide into the last available chair just as the chief medical examiner begins the rundown. This half-hour meeting is when we discuss the day’s cases, decide what kind of examination is needed for each case, and assign the cases to the pathologists who will conduct the examinations. 

Some background: As deaths occur in our district, they are reported to one of the 12 investigators working in the medical examiner’s office. The investigator gathers preliminary information, including what the person may have died of and the circumstances surrounding the death, and makes a determination about whether the office needs to be involved in certifying the death. Although television makes it seem as though forensic pathologists spend all their time working on high-profile murders, the reality is that in a given year, only 15 to 20% of my cases are homicides, and of those only a few are unusual enough to be television-worthy. The majority of cases involve accidents, self-inflicted injuries, overdoses, and people who die unexpectedly at home, in sometimes murky circumstances.

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(Trans) Man Whore: A Trans Guy’s Experience as a Sex Worker

Recently in Phoenix, Arizona, a woman was arrested for walking down the street, engaging other pedestrians in conversation. This was a blatant case of profiling, because police accused the woman, a transgender woman of color, of soliciting sex work. For those who don’t know, transgender means a person’s experienced gender identity and their assigned sex at birth are incongruous. I was assigned female at birth, but from a young age I felt that was inaccurate, and after years of emotional turmoil, psychiatric intervention, and drug addiction, I got clean and began medically transitioning, taking the only drug I need—testosterone.

Back to the woman in Phoenix: It’s a harmful stereotype that many trans women are sex workers, and a recent Amnesty International report describes how police often profile these women as such. However, like any stereotype, there are people for whom it’s true. Many trans women, especially those who are economically disadvantaged, rely on sex work to survive. Also, it’s estimated that between 20-30% of trans people use drugs, as opposed to about 9% of the general population. These rates, combined with the daily discrimination against trans people, suggest trans people use alcohol and drugs to cope with the impacts of discrimination, including discrimination in such areas as the workplace, housing, healthcare, legal documents, marriage, public restrooms, and the military. These forms of discrimination, particularly the fact that transgender people face rates of unemployment at twice the rate of the general population, especially for trans people of color, explain why many of us are drawn to performing sex work as a source of income.

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Letters To Seventeen Magazine’s “Most Embarrassing Moments” Section, If More Teenagers Had Vagina Dentata

OMG!-Worthy Vagina Dentata Trauma-ramas

For any teen, developing your first set of vaginal teeth is stressful enough, but when it involves your crush or flossing, it can be extra traumatic! Here, readers reveal their most cringe-worthy dentata stigmata moments!

“I was spending a Saturday night with my steady when we knew his parents were going to be out of town, and, well…things got pretty hot and heavy. In the middle of our “study sesh,” I started hearing weird noises — and not good weird noises, either. My boyfriend was making the strangest choking sounds. Then I looked down, and there was blood everywhere! At first I thought it was my period — how embarrassing! But it was coming from him. He died :(“

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Link Roundup!

Mallory came to the gym with me yesterday and she BROUGHT IT. She brought it HARD. She did not throw up! She did not cry. She just kept grimly working it and periodically called my trainer “sir,” which means she was on the edge of losing her true self. We will return to the gym on Thursday.

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I really want you to read this. Don’t overlook it bc it was written by a male contributor.

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Kate Harding on Ray Rice and Janay Palmer.

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OMIGOD WOW

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Yoga Mantras For Jerks

“Set an intention of shutting up.”

“Close your heart. Tighter. Tighter than that. Close your heart within you.”

“Send your breath into your lungs, which is the only place your breath can go.”

“Do nothing with your sitbones.”

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