Simple Things

I need the simple things that any human needs; companionship, attention, love, people to love.

I can’t afford, though, to have to cut myself down, deny who I am, play small to get those things.

I am wicked smart and wicked queer.  Who I am, my essence, is not a choice, as so many of us smart, queer people have been trying to tell the world for so very long.

I know how to enter the world and serve others.  I have proven that very well over the years.

My experience, though, tells me that the advice I get from others is that if I need to get the simple things any human needs, I need to relax, need to dial it down, need to meet the people where they are.  That is the simple and wise advice they want to give me.

It is also the simple and wise advice that has gotten me to this point, feeling so much “the loneliness of a long lost tranny,” as the tag line for this blog has read for over a decade now.

“Golly, what does that line mean, Callan?   How can I help?  I want to hear your stories,” is not the response I have gotten over the years. “Well, if you are so smart and so prickly, you can find solutions to your own problems,” is more like it.

My challenge started very early with my Aspergers parents, continued as my trans nature pushed me into the closet, and followed through with desire that was unsalable in the world.

There are, of course, a whole raft of shoulda, woulda, coulda, notions that might have made progress in the world better and easier for me.

Recently, I sang “Hello Dolly!” for my sister’s friend, recounting how I sang it to rouse my mother out of bed in the last week of her life.   She actually liked my singing and later asked me if I had done it professionally, which amused me, much as the person who just saw TBB and I perform as “The Drama Queens” in Portland came up to me and asked if we were professionals.  “You’d be good, if you only had an act,” was one professional drag queen’s judgement.

Her liking my singing sent me back to a time in the 1990s when a friend took my picture to a psychic and she said “Tell them to keep singing.”   “You have spoken for your mother, you have spoken for me, now speak for yourself,” my father told me many times in his failing last weeks.

I lived in the times I lived in, I lived in the network that I did, I made the best choices I could.  “Should” they have been better, more out there, more attractive and appealing?   It’s easy to say yes to that question, but “should” questions about the past are always tricks, always false.

I remember Monica who lived her life with a philosophy she got from “Popeye the Sailor.”  1) I am what I am, and that’s all that I am.  2) I takes what I takes and that’s all that I takes.  3) Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize. (When pushed, she would usually admit that she added the third one.)

I need the simple things that any human needs; companionship, attention, love, people to love.

I can’t afford, though, to have to cut myself down, deny who I am, play small to get those things.

I am what I am, and that’s all that I am, even if you find that challenging to you, even if you want to dismiss it as crackpot and stupid.   Calling me that has never changed who I am before, and I should know, because my family tried that between when I was about seven and thirteen years old.

My needs are simple, but I am not, which seems to make me difficult for others.

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