Says Instapundit, pointing at something I wrote yesterday. After quoting the interviewee's saying that she "became interested in science," he continues:
It’s funny, I was talking to a friend a while back who was very interested in math and science pre-puberty, but lost nearly all interest afterward, and she said, “when the estrogen came in, the science went out.”You might want to connect this to the recent episode of "Survivor," in which a gay man outed a female-to-male transgender. Writing about that a couple days ago, I mentioned that we'd been watching the show believing that "we were looking at a not-terribly-masculine gay man." Varner, the gay man who outed the the other contestant wasn't someone I would assume was gay. He'd have to tell me. Now, Varner caught hell not just for outing his tribe-mate (Zeke). He was also condemned for characterizing closetedness as deception. Here's an interview with Varner:
Some other stuff in this interview reminds me of my friend (and former editor) Norah Vincent, who lived as a man for a year and wrote a great book, Self-Made Man. She, too, said that as a “bulldyke” woman, she was very masculine, but as a man — in her case, without hormones — she wasn’t all that masculine for a man. And that it was a lot harder to be a man than women think.
Meanwhile, also from This American Life, the most NPR line ever: “I have rage. Unfortunately, it’s impotent rage.” Also, the highest testosterone level among the NPR males is 274, which I believe is treatably low. . . . .
Plus: “If I can’t be the most manly in public radio, where the hell can I be the most manly?”
"I will say that I have spent 10 months stewing in this awful, horrible mistake I made. I have been through I don’t now how much therapy with the show’s therapist, with a local therapist, I have met with and spoken to several LGBT organizations, I have joined the board of a couple of them, I joined a national study on outness. This has changed me drastically. But I don’t want to spend two minutes talking about my experience because this isn’t about me. This is about Zeke. And I can only profusely apologize."There's a lot there about etiquette and human decency that's complicated by the competition (which everyone knows entails deception and manipulating other people's fears about being deceived and played for a fool (with $1 million at stake)). Varner blundered and is paying a big price. But I wonder how he, as a gay man, felt about Zeke's presenting himself as a gay man. Those of us in the majority — the nongay — should perhaps not be so judgmental about how a gay man feels when a transgender male chooses to present as gay when that person seems relatively unmasculine.
The transgender person Instapundit quoted also said that her — and later, his — role models were James Dean and Jason Priestley, and that "I was better at that as a dyke than I am as a man, I have to say." And:
"It's a bit of a disappointment. It's a bit of a disappointment. I often ask people, what kind of a guy am I? What do you see? And unfortunately, people often respond that they see a nerd, which I never was before. I was always really cool and popular and hip and whatever.So this person was perceived edgily masculine by people who were seeing what they thought of as a woman, but a boring nerd by those who were perceiving a man. And that was with the testosterone.
ADDED: Nothing against nerds. Nerd can be the identity you embrace. If that's what you want, go for it.