EXPLORING TRANS — TUESDAY, MAY 11, 2010, 1:33 AM
Today was the boat cruise. Every year, after all papers and exams are done, the seniors at my college have a tradition on going on a dinner cruise on the river with some of the favorite faculty and staff. This was it, and overall, it was awesome.
Parts of it were less awesome. My friend looked at our drinks (she had a Sex On The Beach; another friend and I both had Cosmopolitans) and said, “We’re so girly!” Awesome. Great. Thanks. So not what I want to hear. The next drink I ordered was a vodka tonic.
Now, I firmly believe that everyone should be able to drink what they want (I mean, given laws about drinking age and what-have-you) — drinks shouldn’t be gendered. That said, I recognize that people do tend to make assumptions about people based on the kind of alcohol they prefer.
I have an unfortunate weakness for really sweet, fruity drinks. I’m not a big fan of being able to taste the alcohol (unless it’s the very expensive, high quality alcohol I generally can’t afford, which is a whole different story). I say “unfortunate” because the sorts of drinks I prefer are almost without exception considered to be “girl drinks.”
It’s a struggle deciding what to order. On the one hand, there’s little point in buying (and consuming) a drink that I will dislike. On the other, having a “girly”drink in hand makes me feel uncomfortable (at least, until the alcohol starts to set in — then, the discomfort begins to fade a bit). It causes people to make comments on how girly I am, which is the last image I’m trying for.
I realize that I shouldn’t care about what people think. I heard it said that men who won’t wear pink, or bake, or hold their girlfriends’ purses, or any number of other femininely gendered things are just not secure in their masculinity. And I’ll freely admit that that may be the case for me. I’m just not secure enough in my own masculinity, or transmasculinity, or androgyny, or simply non-femininity, to be comfortable doing things that are really gendered feminine, even when I would otherwise like it. It’s perhaps understandable that I would be insecure, given that few people — even among the people to whom I am closest — acknowledge the elements of me that are not feminine. Still, it’s something I’m trying to work on. One day, I’d like to be able to order the girliest drink I can think of and be completely secure in who I am enough to not care what people think of me because of it.