Posts tagged “personal history”

  1. 1. It’s so nice to see you! (My Xanax just kicked in.)
    2. My hair is different, thank you for noticing. It was time for a change (...back to the way it grows out of my head).
    3. I’m very seriously considering grad school. (Tisch’s MFA program had an open reception at the MoMA one night, and there was an exhibit I really wanted to not pay to see.)

    66 comments
  2. The oldest story in the world starts with a fortress, a dreamer, and an elusive idea: "a better life." Pack your bags, little dreamer, spread your wings and go! Fly over the fortress to chase that map, that blank spot, that finger-pointed "there."

    17 comments
  3. This is what is harder to say: I changed my mind the moment before. My body changed my mind for me; after the four glasses of wine, and the groping in the cab, and the finally, finally pounding with my heart, my body hesitated. But still, I did not say no. Or stop. Or wait. Or maybe we’d better not. He said, “You’re such a tease,” which, all things considered, seemed like a fair assessment.

    98 comments
  4. Nintendo was to be my central fasciniche, and more than that: it would be my lantern in the dark, offering me the means to comprehend my existence and the will to try. I had been a boy without a role, trapped in a world I couldn’t understand. But a game gives you a role. A game gives you a world you’re meant to understand. In a game, it’s impossible not to belong.

    22 comments
  5. I first considered the possibility that I might be transgender during a foggy church morning in 2014. Somewhere between the third and sixth time I had to sit down during services, an idea sparked into my head – what if I’m actually a woman? Like most trans women, I grappled with that question at the time. I was slowly distancing myself from my LGBT community, fearing that the movement was incapable of addressing serious questions…

    12 comments
  6. The version of me that my mom spent my whole life trying to bring into existence came alive eight months ago. She took her first steps on Facebook, using my name and my face to hide behind. She used the version of my name that I adopted when I left home and stepped outside the margins of acceptable femininity as drawn and reinforced by mom and her idea of respectable religiosity. Her profile picture, ironically enough, was a…

    41 comments
  7. Felix Kent's previous work for The Toast can be found here. When I was applying to colleges a lifetime ago, my atheist father suggested I write my application essays about Sai Baba. He said there were lots of smart kids more or less like me applying to college -- this part of my life set me apart. It was good advice, perhaps. I didn’t follow it. Sathya Sai Baba, who died in 2011, was…

    15 comments
  8. When I was in high school, I saw myself as someone who moved between cliques. My main friend group included smart athletic types, potheads, and nerds (we wouldn’t have classified ourselves in that way—we would have said we were “normal”). Many of us were in Model U.N., mostly because it meant a trip every year. A few of us were friends with the more popular kids. A few of us who played sports were friends…

    20 comments
  9. Genesis

    The knot descends on the pit of my stomach when I cross the Potomac, tightening as I make my way south. I barely notice Virginia. North Carolina greets me with tobacco farms, their large green leaves rolling out before me for acres. They die a bit each year, a cancer wrought on the terrain. I pass the pig trucks on the highway, their cargo tainted with purple blotches, bound for the slaughterhouse. I meet the…

    3 comments
  10. I. TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN When I am driving across the desert at 85 miles per hour just after sunup moving back from Iowa channeling my mother’s father who died on the job trucking liquid nitrogen in three-day stretches around the country I am thinking about how perhaps the most subversive thing a female can do is travel alone. In the past year, during which I have I have lived in five different cities…

    4 comments
  11. Spin My sophomore year in college, I attended a study-abroad program in a tiny cobblestone city in Tuscany that was so beautiful I thought it was pretend. The streets were narrow and lined with churches and cathedrals and museums; every ceiling was painted with stories; every wall molded into gargoyles and cherubs. At its center was a football field-sized square called Piazza del Campo where everyone met up, drank in the culture, and in my…

    10 comments
  12. 1. 1994, Record store in suburban mall, Southeastern Pennsylvania Green barn jacket, jeans, t-shirt, and a limp little bra, more of a band-aid than anything architectural. Sneakers. I’m looking for Toad the Wet Sprocket’s album Dulcinea. On cassette tape. “Can I help you, sir?”  The sales guy has long frizzy hair, the kind that acts of its own accord, independent of gravity or conditioner. “Miss.” “Sorry?” “MISS. I am a GIRL.” He blinks. Mild perturbation flits…

    53 comments
  13. The words always stood out ominously: “Tell me about yourself.” Any time I met potential new friends or went on a date or had a job interview, that’s when I’d get into trouble. Sooner or later, there would be the big open-ended question. Sooner or later I’d have to talk about myself. I would try and start off by listing and explaining my interests, and then after a while I might say, “Well, I’m a…

    40 comments
  14. Previously by Jacqueline Steiger: 16 Gemstones Renamed Correctly I have always considered myself a reader: always stuck in a book, always escaping into another world. As a child, I would read during dinner, at night under the covers, in the car. We had a rule that if I picked out a book at the bookstore, I could not start reading it until we exited, because my mother said she was tired of me "finishing…

    22 comments
  15. Winter is the best season for hiding things. A blizzard is a flurry, then a blanket. The neighbors stay inside. The sky is dark when you leave for work; the sky is dark when you get home. Men can enter your apartment without notice at twilight and be back in Manhattan for dinner with their wives by nightfall. You can blend into a crowd in winter, get lost in a sea of black and grey…

    7 comments