-We set out to change the world, but ended up just changing - just changing ourselves.
-What's wrong with that?
If you don't look at the world.
The first time I told anybody I was genderqueer, there wasn't a word for it yet. I told my closest friend, and he freaked out and told me I had to keep it secret. Never tell another living soul, cause that was just going too far. The bisexuality thing was cute, he said, but that was just - no.
I basically hid in my room for two days, much as I could. Then a vague acquaintance of mine called and bugged me till I agreed to go to a screening of Velvet Goldmine with her. She had no idea what was going on with me, she just needed someone to go with.
And it reminded me there were other sorts of people in the world, there was the possibility to celebrate creative/alternative gender. And not be completely alone. The movie tells the story of (the rise and fall of) about five minutes in which the world was friendly to people whose gender/sexuality was not normative, in which this beautiful sparkly bubble of acceptance held, in London and New York. It made a huge difference for me. Huge.
One of the themes of Velvet Goldmine is social change, dealing with living in a world that was designed for people unlike you. There are a lot of scenes that touch that - getting beat up as a kid and likening the blood to lipstick, getting booed off stage for wearing a dress, the way the media reacted to a kiss between two guys. It's about it's about trying to deal with oppression, resistance, and usually reclaiming or celebrating the difference. And still it's a movie about a safe and understanding world, there for a second.
I was thinking today about the movie actually being about the world. About - no matter if you create a wonderful safe group around you, there's still the world. And some things - most things - can't be changed, you just have to wait for the world to change, to hope it does. And it's one of the hardest things...
And I was thinking, that lately, I'd been meeting more and more people I didn't have to introduce myself to along with a painful discussion of my gender. People who knew what "genderqueer" meant, or who made the effort to read about it cause they cared. Which - has not happened, almost ever, in the past. And in the last few years, year, months - it keeps becoming more of an option. That a random person I'd at uni, in fandom, online, might know something about gender, that there are more than two options - I remember two years ago it'd blow my mind to meet somebody I didn't have to explain this to, in answer to "why are you talking weird?" Less than a year ago, I remember trying to think of anyone, just one person I'd managed to get through to, that I felt actually got my gender, without there being very special circumstances involved, and I couldn't think of one. Less than a year ago, I was talking to this amazing person I met in fandom, and she was mostly straight and cisgender (not transgender) - and she'd asked me what my preferred pronouns were, just - did, on account of being awesome... and I kept asking her how come she was so educated and understanding about it, it just blew my mind!
The world is changing. A little. My world is. And I don't believe it's just cause I hang out at different places. There were no places. I remember these places - really not long ago.
And that's - it's kind of - I'd lost some hope, not completely, and I'm not completely on solid ground about this now either, not by a long shot.
But it still makes me cry.
It's kinda amazing to let go - I'd done everything-eveything I could come up with to make things better, and I was done, for good or bad it was up to the world - and I didn't expect the world to budge, at all - ( some pretty )