Papageno 4 by selfmade1
I found and used this on last week’s Pleasurists and love it so much I wanted to share it here too. I’ve become enamored with peacock feathers lately and want to do this to my hair. That is all.
I used to think I was an exhibitionist. I still do think that to a point, but lately I’ve been so reserved and worried about the way others perceive me I can hardly call myself an exhibitionist. I’m more self-conscious now than I have ever been before in my life. I’m less outrageous, trying to blend more, and just generally unsure of myself. Recently I had two separate conversations on different topics that lead to this point, I’m letting my ego get in the way, my anxiety take over.
Even though it seems like this is the opposite of the ego’s job, it’s still part of the same mold. The same part of you builds yourself up that will knock yourself down. The ego is responsible for the worry and anxiety and stopping you from being you just as it can be responsible for the arrogance and puffed-out chest of confidence. Either extreme isn’t desired, but, as with all things in life, I seek to find a balance, a happy equilibrium within myself.
This might sound crazy coming from someone who blogs about her life, who routinely informs others about her sex, thoughts, and feelings, but especially lately I seem to have a difficult time believing that other people are actually interested in hearing what I have to say. I’m not talking about on here, but in person, when I meet new people or interact with known ones. This was especially true the first few weeks after I got back to Seattle.
When I was in Juneau I was much more comfortable. My motto for Juneau is basically “it’s Juneau, nobody cares,” and I would say it whenever there was a question of etiquette, appropriate dress for an event, or pretty much anything. This isn’t really true, though. Juneau is a small town and there is tons of gossip. Despite thinking it was super liberal when I grew up (and it is compared to the rest of Alaska) there are still lots of non-liberal ideas and people who live there, and it isn’t comfortable to express everything there.
I do think that, for the most part, people in Juneau don’t give a shit about you unless they know you, however, and that’s where my motto came from. I never really got invested in Juneau people. Growing up there I did tons of activism in the high school, I was in many theatre productions, people knew who I was but very few people actually knew me, and I liked it that way. Going back was very similar, only I knew even less people. I knew people could recognize me, and people did quite often, but if they had any preconceived notions of me it didn’t matter, or maybe it mattered less.
Some of this goes back to what I was talking about in Relational Assumptions. I’m worried about what people here will assume about me, I haven’t been able to adopt the same nonchalant attitude because I actually want to be invested here, I want to gain friends and not be a loner like I have been previously. I want to be more outgoing and social, but I need to stop caring so much about what other people think, because I want people to like me for me and not for anything else.
I like being a multifaceted individual, but sometimes it’s exhausting because I’m too worried about other people to express myself fully. A friend, in one of the conversations I mentioned above, mentioned she had learned to instate a complete honesty policy in order to encourage compatible friendships and discourage ones that could turn sour down the road. I think I do this too… to an extent, anyway. I will answer questions honestly but don’t always offer up information unasked, but I want to change this.
I’m trying to shed the trappings of my ego, acknowledge them and move past them, to stop being so self-conscious. Care less what people I don’t know think about me and more about feeling comfortable within myself and expressing myself however that happens. I want to start volunteering information about myself, start realizing that people care what I have to say and actually have an interest in hearing it. Part of the beginning of this change in me came in dying my hair from the reddish brown it has been the last few months back to a bright purple, the rest of it will come soon.
I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with body hair, I think that’s pretty common.
I’ve had periods of time where I can’t stand any of it, shaving my pits, pubes, and legs once they show even a slight bit of stubble, plucking my eye brows often freakishly goth-thin so that they are barely there (ah, teenagerhood). I’ve shaved my arms as well, though only once and never again since I thought it felt funny when it was growing in. I have tried shaving, waxing, plucking, rubbing, all to see what works best and what feels the best.
Then there have been periods of time where I love it in one form or another, not getting rid of it anywhere, or just shaving one part or another. At one point I was shaving nowhere but my pubic hair, which was kind of amusing. For a long time I shaved everywhere completely, though I’ve played around with different styles “down there” like a “landing strip” or a vee shape (though I haven’t tried using a stencil) and so on.
Recently I’d gotten lax about shaving, it was simply seeming like too much work, so I decided to stop completely. At some point Onyx remarked that this is the hairiest he’s ever seen me, and that’s true. For the majority of our relationship I’ve been pretty dedicated to shaving. One time when I was scratching my head, arm raised, Marla remarked that she thought my tuft of armpit hair was sexy, and I agree.
I suppose a lot of people associate body hair with masculinity, especially considering a “male” hormone is responsible for the growth of it (it is called androgenic hair after all), and growing more comfortable with an “other” gender expression has definitely been a catalyst for my choice to stop shaving. I’m not exactly interested in passing in one gender or another, and a masculine appearance was not my intention in stopping either, it is more about feeling comfortable in my body.
It’s also quite possible that I may change my mind tomorrow or the day after that or the month after that, I may grow tired of having a thick forest underneath my arms or a dark collection of hairs on my legs and take a razor to them. This is just one fluctuating part of that gender equation.
In addition to the rest of my body hair I have been letting the hair on my chin grow as well, instead of plucking it as usual. I have two little tufts to either side of my chin which are excellent for stroking when desiring to appear deep in thought.
There are so many ways to play with and express gender and gender deviance, from subtle to in-your-face and everywhere in between. What I’ve been trying to figure out in the last few weeks is how to reconcile my femme and fagette identities into a conceivable whole. I’m often not sure it’s even possible, but I’m trying at least.
I was asked not too long ago on FetLife “how do you find the harmony of being both without being confused or feel like you’re betraying one half of yourself at the expense of expressing the other?”
Part of my response:
“Unfortunately, I don’t have a good answer for that question. I do often feel confused or like I am betraying parts of myself, but I can only realize that there is almost no way to not feel that way and in realizing try not to feel that betrayal. It’s difficult to almost never have my own gender perceived or acknowledged by those around me. I think that is one of the worst things about being gender-fluid, or any sort of multigendered, that it’s difficult or nearly impossible to get validation from others on your gender because there’s not an easy way to express gender fluidity, if it can be expressed at all in all it’s vastness. Since people want to categorize everyone they meet and since we are conditioned to view gender as binary it’s difficult to exist outside of that binary in the gender galaxy at large.”
My issue with this moves beyond being multigendered into the fact that not only am I multigendered but that due to my appearance I’m easily read by the outside world as cisgendered. It’s similar to femme invisibility, though the issue is gender invisibility rather than queer invisibility. While femme is a large part of my gender identity it is not all of it.
Femme gender and queerness is what is invisible, what people have trouble seeing or what people gloss over. Because my primary gender presentation is femme I have the same issues but with the added fagette twist. This isn’t to say that my invisibility is more than that of femmes because it’s not, it’s just a slightly different kind of the same invisibility.
Of course, it doesn’t help that I’m involved with a cisgendered male. I’m used to people not seeing my queerness especially when we’re together, and I’m used to people not seeing my fagette side because it can also look very femme.
It’s human nature to look for recognition in others, and look for others like you. Even while I’m used to people not seeing these things in me that doesn’t mean I still don’t want them to. I am slowly coming to embrace the fact that it doesn’t matter as much what other people see as long as I know how I feel and am being me to the best of my ability. It’s difficult, but it’s something I’m trying to do.
A few butches on twitter were talking about cross-dressing a while ago, I know Kyle and Sinclair were among them and don’t remember who else, but they said that when asked if they cross-dress daily they would say no because cross-dressing to them would be wearing a skirt. I began to question my own cross-dressing, and part of me thinks I do cross-dress daily.
I think clothes for me are cross-dressing, clothes for me are drag. Sometimes I think I’ve just internalized pomo rhetoric to the extent that I really don’t feel like I have an inherent draw to some gender or another. I know that even though all gender is drag that doesn’t mean that people don’t have a pull to some sort of gender expression or another. I do have a pull to gender expression, but I don’t know what gender expression is pulling me to it.
I wear skirts. I don’t wear pants. Honestly, I don’t wear pants because they are confining and uncomfortable. Although I can’t say that has nothing to do with the meaning of pants in our society since that is so ingrained in us and I’m sure it’s still ingrained in me, but I can say that my conscious reasoning behind it doesn’t have to do with that.
My only issue with skirt wearing is that it’s difficult to be androgynous in a skirt. Or, let me rephrase: it’s difficult to be perceived as androgynous in a skirt. If I were male in a skirt that would be clear, but female in a skirt seems to be perceived as nothing but feminine. Since cutting my hair short I’ve gotten a few more double-takes, a few more curious looks, but I’m generally dismissed as a short-haired girl regardless of how much I try to play with my femme fagette expression.
There are nights I feel more like a femme and nights I feel more like a fagette, and nights where I’m not sure what the fuck I am. The only harmony I can find is by overanalyzing, exploring, and allowing myself and my gender to grow and evolve.
Recently I’ve been thinking about and exploring the idea of packing. Somehow packing has come up quite a bit in the last few weeks, both in the form of reviews (both Holden and Erin Leone have reviewed packies recently) and pictures (Kyle shared some with us for HNT). I’d been thinking about packing in a peripheral way before these all came out, but they definitely brought it to the forefront for me.
I just recently received Silky in the mail, just yesterday actually. A almost flesh-colored cock that has a bendable spine in the middle enabling the user to bend it to any shape the six inches of shaft can bend to. I enjoy making it S shaped and such just to see how well it bends. Because Silky is so bendable it’s also great for hard packing (as opposed to soft packing). One of the main reasons I got Silky is to see how it works for packing.
I packed with Silky for a while last night, though I did it just around the house. It was unusual, but I definitely liked it. The thing about packing isn’t about wanting to have a penis, at least not for me and not for the people I’ve talked about packing with, it’s more of a focal point for gendered energy. It was a reminder more than anything else, something to draw my attention and to bring my consciousness to my gender.
While I was packing I was wearing a dress. My Silky was not really noticeable under the dress at all, unless I sat cross-legged and the dress draped over Silky, but even when that happened it wouldn’t have been apparent unless one was looking for it. It isn’t meant to be obvious, though, and just the fact that I’m packing under a skirt is genderfucky enough for me. The glaring gender “contradiction” is where I thrive. It’s where I find my harmony, even if no one else knows about it.
Found these questions answered by Thursday’s Child and thought they were kind of cute and may be a good way to jump-start my writing. I have so many posts swimming in my head, but am having a difficult time articulating them. Plus, doesn’t everyone want to read about my thoughts on this stuff?
1. Who eats more?
It goes back and forth, actually. Most days I do, I think, but some days he does, it just depends on what we have that day and the times. Usually we eat together or at least near the same time, but some days if we don’t one of us ends up eating more. Or I just eat more in general ’cause I tend to snack.
2. Who said “I love you” first?
He did. It was before we actually physically met, by a little more than a month. We had been planning on meeting in March of 2005 but put it off until July because of school and I was moving out of the dorms into an apartment in June and then heading to Juneau for a couple weeks, so we set the meeting date to be after my Juneau trip. We were chatting online as usual one night in June and he was somewhat drunk and told me he loved me. I was shocked but also intensely happy, we had this “friends with benefits” idea before that, but his drunken admission kind of changed everything.
3. Who is the morning person?
He is more than I am, but neither of us are really morning people at all. He tends to wake up before I do and get tired before I do, but mostly because his body has been trained into that schedule. If given the chance we would both stay up most the night and sleep during the day I think.
4. Who sings better?
I do, though he rarely sings, and when he does I love it, but he often is off key, which is just more endearing. I have the benefit of having taken lessons when I was younger, and also being in a choir or two.
5. Who is older?
He is, by ten and a half years, so we will never be in the same decade, which amuses me, though I like to pretend I’m older (and people generally assume I’m older), so it kind of works out.
6. Who is smarter?
He says I am, I used to say he is, but I think after so many years we’ve kind of established that I am. Well, that’s not exactly true, but it’s true in some ways. Our intellect is very comparable, really, but we’re just smart in different ways. We’re both brilliant in some things and stupid in others.
7. Whose temper is worse?
This one’s difficult because we both have difficulty expressing anger. I’m going to say mine is, or I get slighted easier than he does and I am generally more upset when I do express things, though we express things in very different manners.
8. Who does the laundry?
We both do, for the most part. Laundry is usually done on a whim, and so whoever feels like doing it does it. It’s about even, I think.
9. Who does the dishes?
Again, we both do. I think he does them more often since I usually cook and often we do the dishes at the same time as cooking, which means it’s difficult for me to do them.
10. Who sleeps on the right side of the bed?
Depends on if the right side is from the sleeper’s or viewer’s perspective. I’d assume sleeper’s, but who knows. He does, in that case, though before we moved I used to. We switched because of where the outlets/power strips are and therefore where my laptop is (now on the left side). Probably once we get a real bed and our bedroom set up we will switch back to me on the right.
11. Whose feet are bigger?
His, but only by a size. He has average feet, I have big feet.
12. Whose hair is longer?
Mine, but only by about an inch since I cut it. The back and sides of his hair are much shorter than mine, but the top is about an inch shorter I think. Either way both of our hair is short.
13. Who’s better with the computer?
He’s better at most things, though I’m generally faster on it.
14. Do you have pets?
We currently have four cats: Erebus Aleister Sebastian, Eros Agape Cesario, Aether Ganymede Newton, and Morpheus Andreas Orion. We used to have two others: Nyx Astarte Viola, and Nemesis Ararita Olivia. Nyx is the mother of Aether, Morpheus, and Nemesis, though Nem was from a previous litter and Aether and Morph are litter brothers.
We also have two snakes currently, a Honduran milk snake named Scarlet Medea Astarte and a Columbian Boa named Gandhi Odin… though he has a third name and I can’t think of it.
15. Who pays the bills?
Technically it’s his money 99% of the time, though not always, but we have a joint account and we both pay the bills from that account. It transforms into both of our money, even though he’s the one making it.
16. Who cooks dinner?
I do, pretty much always, though sometimes he does. He’s a great cook, but prior to our relationship he had never really cooked vegetarian, and since I am vegetarian that meant the cooking generally fell to me. Plus, I love cooking, so I usually want to cook anyway.
17. Who drives when you are together?
Neither of us! We don’t have a car, and we don’t have drivers licenses. Crazy, right? He had one in Norway but let it lapse since there are hoops to jump through to get a license in Utah. I’ve never had one, though I’ve meant to get one I’ve just never had a car.
18. Who pays when you go out to dinner?
Usually he does, because he’s faster with his card, but sometimes I do, though it all comes from the same bank account anyway. I just like to pretend like I pay sometimes.
19. Who’s the most stubborn?
We’re both pretty damn stubborn, though I think I am slightly moreso than he is, but it’s definitely a tough thing to compare. I just asked him and he said “yeah… I think you’re more stubborn” in a definitely more stubborn sort of way. I can be pretty bad sometimes
20. Who is the first one to admit when they’re wrong?
Hah, um… I’m not sure. We’re both pretty bad about that, but he probably is the first to admit it, though it depends on what the circumstances are and who is at fault more. I think it fluctuates.
21. Who’s family do you see more?
Mine, definitely, we’re actually going to a big party for my Aunt this weekend and so we’re going to see even more of them. Moving to Seattle kind of made my family an even more frequent occurrence since both my parents come here frequently, and most of my extended family is about three hours away. His family is in Norway, so we did see them last May when we went over there, but that’s nowhere nearly as frequent as my family.
22. Who named your pets?
We both did, though I was the primary namer. I have naming rules, such as they must have three names and must somewhat go together, such as all of our kitties have primordial Greek Gods for first names.
23. Who kissed who first?
We pretty much devoured each others mouths the first time we saw each other, about a second in to it, but we had known each other online for quite some time already and we had been doing things online and on the phone prior to meeting face-to-face. I think he initiated the kiss that first time, but we were both going for it.
24. Who asked who out?
That never really happened.
26. Who is more sensitive?
Me, definitely. Much more sensitive. I don’t like it, but I am.
27. Who is taller?
I think I am, but only by about a half inch, maybe less, we’re very close to the same height unless I’m wearing heels.
28. Who has more friends?
That’s a tough one… I’m honestly not sure. We’re such a couple (in a way I never imagined myself to be) that most of our friends are mutual ones, though I still am in contact with more of my pre-relationship friends than he is, so maybe that counts.
29. Who has more siblings?
I do, I have two sisters and he has one half sister.
I feel like I’m discovering a part of myself I buried away, and mostly just because of a different environment. When just about everything around me is changing I feel the most at home. I thrive on change, as I am always in a constant state of change.
I dressed up last night with my hair in a fauxhawk, in lipstick, a bettie page shirt, and purple pants. To that I added a thick purple feather boa (pic above), and I felt come into myself. My newly cut hair makes me smile when I look at my face. I look like me again.
I was trying to be someone else for a while, someone I thought I wanted to be, or someone I thought Onyx wanted, or someone I thought could be, I’m not sure. I look at pictures of me with long hair and I don’t look right. I look like someone else.
Hair cuts can do that. They have power like that. They can change the way a person looks completely, be subtle or drastic, help mold a new identity. I look in the mirror and I wonder how I tried to be anything else.
This isn’t really a new identity. It’s one I’ve been talking about and theorizing for a while, but I needed a change of location to find it, a change of scenery. I’m still everything I’ve ever been and everything I will be, I just look a little different.
I’m finding the perfect way to meld my sway and shimmy with my swagger, and it’s fun.
I’m in such constant change that this doesn’t feel like change, just discovery. By which I mean, I don’t ever feel like I as a whole changes or my core changes, that always stays the same, but everything else changes, which is lots.
I’ve been waiting for something to kick-start me into discovering these new changes. Seattle is just that.
I felt so stagnant and helpless before we moved, and like I couldn’t affect anything since I had no control over when we moved. Ultimately it was Onyx who decided we should move and made it happen, even though I had been telling him we didn’t have to wait and could do it if we decided to. I’d been saying that for months, and it took him realizing that to make it happen.
Now I’m realizing the possibilities of this city. The possibility of being able to embrace a the side of myself I have been rejecting is overwhelming. I’ve already started introducing myself as Scarlet instead of my given name and I love it.
I can be me here, and that’s what’s most exciting.
I feel especially blessed that I have a partner who is willing and eager to share it with me. Someone who is supportive and excited to watch as I discover and change and progress and who finds me sexy and attractive regardless.
Yes, yes, it’s not Thursday anymore, but, I don’t subscribe to your limiting ideas of the days it’s acceptable to post a Half Nekkid Thursday post, so I’m posting mine on Friday! Plus, I’ve been moving and I wasn’t really online much at all yesterday, so cut me some slack!
Okay, well, now that that’s out of the way… I’m not sure what possessed me, maybe it’s just being in a new city and thirsting for change of any type that I can get my hands on, or maybe it’s just time that I let my long hair go, I’m not sure, but I cut my hair the other day.
I’ve been changing it a lot lately, as you may or may not have noticed. Not too long ago it was bright red and past my shoulders, and when I wasn’t finding any jobs in SLC I decided to get it to a slightly more normal color.
It’s been shorter than this before (amusingly enough that picture was also taken in Seattle). I’ve shaved my head before as well, and I used kept it about this length, or anywhere from one to three inches, for many years. A few years ago I decided to start growing it out, and watched it fall to chin-length, shoulder-length, and, finally, past my shoulders.
Maybe it’s something about the Pacific Northwest that makes me want short hair, I don’t know, but something made me desire short hair, and specifically to be able to do my hair up into a fauxhawk.
I wanted a cut that I could have look femme if I chose or put up in a fauxhawk or otherwise spike or slick to be boi-ish or fagette-ish. So that’s what I did. I decided that fauxhawk + lipstick = fagette (though that’s one of infinite combinations, of course).