A Bag of Gripes

I haven’t had the fortitude to write longer than 140 characters at a time on Twitter, or more in places like Mastodon, in a very long time. Oh I have a lot of strong opinions (hell I riffed on Jean Baudrillard, transgenderism and the idea of, “Nature” throughout multiple posts on Twitter…which I’ll list below, with edits made for formatting, punctuation and length:

I recall Jean Baudrillard in, “America” describing national parks as a cultivation of the idea of Nature (a “simulacrum”).

When I encounter discourse regarding gender, I perceive a similar sort of dynamic. One says they are embracing their feminine/masculine traits, but what if they are dependent on an idea of, “nature” that has been fabricated and assumed for years?

When I describe myself as, “transfeminine” I say so with the acknowledgment that I am merely conforming to someone else’s understanding of what the prefix, “trans” and the prefix, “feminine” is. It’s an act of self-preservation on my part. At best, the person I am speaking with is accepting or either the suffix/prefix or both. At worst, if they are not accepting of either, at least I know right away

I do that partly because I don’t feel that either I or society are in a position where things would be ok if I called myself a woman. One could call that, “acknowledging reality”, “being considerate” or variations thereof, but given the subjectivity of human experience and my own pessimism, I don’t accept that. My recourse, then, is simply carving my own space with, “made-up words”.

Who cares if I’m, “abnormal”, or, “don’t/shouldn’t exist”? Who cares about history or biology, really? Those are just rhetorical devices. I fought against the idea that I am merely engaging in a fetish when I came out, out of some idea that to qualify as who one is, they have to be one-hundred percent committed/satisfied, lest they be a fake.

Who the fuck is ever completely satisfied with their existence?

I also don’t know what exactly people mean when they say that trans folk are merely fetishing different roles. How do you determine that?

Do I sometimes come off as too happy when wearing make-up? Am I not miserable enough? Does my prior trauma prior to coming out not count?

I ask this because part of me wants to know if I am damaging people, or even if I’m being an annoyance. Not out of feality to the idea of gender/bioessentialism, but because realizing that those concepts are used as cudgels, I can best navigate away from them.

Because I just want to be myself. And as far as I can see, gender and nature will betray me. Hence even in solidarity, I stand alone.

And that’s ok. Just let me live. I can’t expect to carry someone else’s baggage about whether fucking me or merely breathing next to me is ok or a betrayal of who they are supposed to be, or breaks some nebulous rule that in time will be used to purge them.

I am aware that Jean Baudrillard wrote about transgenderism once, and I’m not a fan.

Then again, maybe I read a bad translation.

So, that’s one gripe of mine (or, rather, several gripes I condensed into one series of posts on social media because I feel a need to let as many people as possible know who I am in a way that feels safe, even if that means possibly alienating people I thought at least tolerated me).


 

Another gripe of mine is my struggle with the moviemaking process. I have been meaning to get a project of mine, “Alpha City”, done for a long time. I wrote a script, had voices recorded for it by cool people, made a storyboard, parred down that storyboard, combined the voice acting and the storyboards into an animanic that I’m nervous about showing people even though I’ve done an animanic for the project a long time ago, as shown below:

I’m mainly contending myself with the fact that I am not very good at drawing. I mean, I’m wearing enough hats as it is. I took it upon myself to direct, write, produce, edit and animate this thing out of my spare time and money. Which means I could either be animation’s answer to Shane Carruth, or end up creating the animated equivalent to, “After Last Season”. Self-awareness and fear are hard things to get past as a creative person. I consume a lot, and I talk a lot of shit (as of this writing, I have done over 2 years of shit-talking if this site is anything to go by). I’m lazy, but have managed to have a huge chunk of my life consumed by a full-time job for over 3 years now (with a 401K and everything). I think of myself as being unfortunate as a black transwoman with socialist leanings despite knowing a friend who went to university for engineering and was paid an insult to the concept of a pittance while working for Apple.

So this is a project where I decide to try to do a lot of things by myself just to say that I can do it, working with a mixture of advantages and disadvantages just to make it happen. And I’m also working on a separate screenplay despite advice from another friend of mine who happens to be working on a novel (and I’m rooting for her because she seriously has some cool ideas). I honestly don’t know what I’m doing. I may be over my head. I just recently begun to get proper sound equipment and am just learning DaVinci Resolve with the most basic grasp on the concept of color correction, on consumer-grade stuff. But I’m doing it anyway. I can only hope that the end result is great.

Eh, fuck it, here is the most recent animanic I have made with rough takes from Kez Grey, Britney Wallace and Edward Haynes Jr., plus sound and editing using Creative Commons work from freesound.org:

And here is a list of the clips from Freesound I have used in the making of this animanic, hyperlinked. I am linking what I was able to find, some sounds have since disappeared from the site, it seems:

Screaming_Crowd.wav

PUNCH-BOXING-03.wav

Crowd at concert.wav

If I am missing anything, let me know.

Rest of the sound effects have been recorded by me, personally, a while back while I was in San Diego. Given that I have used Freesounds for making this, I have recently registered on Freesound and have uploaded some sounds here. I hope you find them useful. Depending on which uploads are accepted by moderators, you may hear my voice at the end of some of them as a way of marking off which recordings are what and when they were made.


This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, PO Box 1866, Mountain View, CA 94042, USA.

 

Advertisements