A look back – May


Nearly half-way through the year already, huh? Although the last… umm… month or two, seems to have been some strangely timeless period. Perhaps it is the routine of being mostly indoors. I say mostly, as although the Jones Crew are not travelling, the Ever Lovely Mrs J and I still need to walk our two dogs, and Muggins here goes out for groceries. Luckily, the village is both very small and therefore fairly quiet, so keeping a distance is pretty easy.

I had a long chat with Midnight (thanks Mrs!) via the usual Thursday Night on-line call. We’ve switched from Skype to an open-source system (Jitsi), which is free, fully encrypted, easy to use, and anonymous. I think we spent about nearly two hours just waffling on and examining the world through the slightly off-kilter lens of being trans-something-or-other.

Amongst the topics was the talk of lower stress levels, possibly down to the lack of commuting and no dashing between meetings, but also, maybe the ability to let one’s proverbial guard down a little. I think I’ve blogged about this before: the concept of the mask. Sue certainly mentioned something akin to it in her comment about the Flags post from last week.

What is the mask? Well, I guess it is the front you put on when you need to be a certain way. Certainly, there’s the professional one that we slip on for work purposes. There’s our social one – possibly different when we’re in front of our family. Lastly, there’s probably the truth…. although I’ve heard it said that there’s one below that: who we really are, but can’t admit to ourselves. There’s a thought and a possibly a long trip through therapy πŸ™‚

But, armchair psychology aside, and while I’m not presenting as Lynn at any point, I have a little more space at home to blur the lines a little. Much as I love a pretty shirt, working remotely means I can wear shorts, sandals, and more gender-neutral clothing. A clever person may argue all clothes are neutral and it’s us who gender them, but I’m not that smart πŸ™‚ There is something in the movement, the cut, and the feel of certain garments that make me feel better about who I am. I can feel trapped in a suit and tie. But ‘bloke casual’, co-ordinated separates, or a dress, and I feel much more relaxed. Likewise, straight-cut jeans make me feel frumpy, but slim fit (Richard) and skinny (Lynn) make me feel okay.

In other news, and seeing as we are talking about appearance, I thought I’d give May a look back after the post in April. May seems to be not quite Spring and not quite Summer. The lighter nights mean an option of a quick outdoor photo and a shift towards flats and sandals.

L18’s outfit is one I love. It’s both pretty and comfortable. It feels quite ‘daytime’, if that makes sense. That wrap dress is one of the first things I bought while out & about, so I have happy memories linked to it. L16 was when I got that wig. I think of all the hairstyles I’ve had, this is the one I feel is the most ‘me’. If L18 is a daytime out & about look, then L19 seems more smart office. Certainly a lot smarter than L15’s tablecloth shirt πŸ˜‰ Ah, the moment when you see something, love the look of it, and once it’s one: ah, maybe not. Still, lessons learned and a chance to gift to something to charity.

Take care,


  1. What a big wardrobe you must have to hold all these different outfits! Nice to see your various styles of clothes and hair again. I particularly like the top in ’17 (where you are facing the firing squad). They’re all very feminine and very you. Sue x

    1. L17 was a bit of fun to break up the stream of Photo on the Staircase at 1045pm. πŸ™‚

      “Any last requests?” they asked, so I said: yes, only shoot with a camera so you get my best side πŸ˜‰

      Wardrobe wise, I’ve got… oh, dear, I think the penny has finally dropped. There’s a single tall cupboard (about half a regular wardrobe width) which has dresses in. Mostly mine as Mrs J is not a dress kinda gal. There’s a double wardrobe that’s 50/50 Richard/Lynn, and then at the far end of the bedroom – aka The Computer Spot Under the Stairs – I’ve got a full wardrobe-width cupboard. That’s for hobby stuff like computer bits, RPG books… and my wigs, shoes, slap, etc.


      …. and yet I will look in and think “I’ve nothing to wear.” πŸ™‚ Perhaps, more accurately, I’m not sure what to pick to make me feel right as my other self when I’m stuck in the other. The evidence would suggest I’ve a lot more choice than I think.

      I do recycle and try not to hang on to things that I didn’t really like, don’t fit, or I’ve not worn for an age. 14’s outfit and hair have gone. 15’s shirt and 17’s wide trousers…. I no longer fit in. πŸ™

      What about you?

      1. Well, since you asked, when I was properly at home I had half a cupboard and one chest of drawers for male stuff and two and a half cupboards and three chests of drawers for female stuff, and that seems like the proper ratios to me!

        I have to point out that one chest of drawers and half a cupboard were dedicated exclusively to hosiery. I love my tights so much, and I have hundreds of pairs, that they have a special status in my home! A treasured collection. Well, why not? Some people collect records, thimbles, train numbers. I collect tights. All get worn, mind, they’re not museum pieces.

        I think choices are theoretical. We may have a lot of stuff but lots of it is purchases that seemed wonderful at the time and then turn out to be a fashion disaster, or that we don’t feel comfortable in or being seen in. I did do a lot of girly clothes swapping and donating. Not to mention keeping stuff of different sizes as I yoyo in size! And my friends complain I always wear the same stuff! Maybe I should swap and donate friends more, too!

        Sue x

        1. Thanks, Sue. Have you thought about starting up a hosiery museum? πŸ™‚ Funny how patterns come in and go out, colours go bright and then mute.

          Ah, a friend donation – that sounds both amusing and brutal at the same time! πŸ™‚ “I’m passing along this person, as while they are generous and fun to be around, they are very keen on holding forth about 19th-century garden furniture. I wondered if they’d be a better fit for you and the steampunk crew?” πŸ˜€

  2. I think you look good in 15. It’s a youthful in-a-good-way outfit. The whole ‘haven’t got anything to wear’ thing I totally get and have a completely new understanding of my wife’s relationship with clothes now. In male mode it feels like if I don’t want to try it doesn’t really matter but when I am dressing I get very emotionally invested in the details. When an outfit comes together it is so fulfilling.
    As a family we are constantly in and out of the charity shops – I will be first in when they reopen πŸ˜€ haven’t recycled anything femme yet – because this is relatively new to me almost everything has some sort of special resonance but I have now run out of storage space so will have to have a cull before too long. I have definitely made one or two mistakes along the way which will have to go – too tight, too short, too young. Anyone else been there?
    Best, Midnight

    1. Well, mistakes are an opportunity to learn. The key thing is reflecting on what might make it better. Perhaps as true for other things, as it is to discover your style.

      Thanks for the kind words regarding the outfit. With bloke clothes the conservatism seems to make it hard to dress too young. That or growing up male, the choices are more obvious perhaps.

      With picking clothes for my other wardrobe it’s been a learning curve around matching separates, finding the unwritten rules around what works for my age, and also what works for someone with a man’s shape in womens’ clothes. The one that I struggle in my head with most, is aiming not to look frumpy, tarty, nor muttony. πŸ˜‰

      It may sound trite, that line about nothing to wear, but when you have an occasion in mind, the myriad of possiblities, the variance in the social rules: it’s a challenge. Well, it is to my simple male steeped brain. πŸ™‚

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