Tuesday, October 20, 2015

It's different when it's one of your own?

Ok so I belong to a hobby that's somewhat niche.  It's sort of a sport, but not really, but most certainly a very high percentage of men versus women.  Anyway that's besides the point.  So the hobby I speak of has a message board, a very large one.  Somehow the subject came up of talking about Caitlyn Jenner maybe a week ago.  Right off the bat it was a joke about his transitioning, which got quickly downvoted.  While a handful of people continued to make jokes, many jumped in and defended transgender people (which was somewhat surprising, guess not everyone in this hobby is a narrow minded jerk).  It was also interesting to see who upvoted those that defended and downvoted those that continued to make jokes.  After about a day, the mods eventually locked the thread down.

So fast forward to this past weekend, attended a show about this hobby (which is interactive).  I'm walking around, checking things out, and out of the corner of my eye I spot what seems like a crossdresser.  Broad shoulders, a build like a football player.  Strappy heels, shaved legs, black skirt with purple ribbon, long black straight hair, but a manly sweatshirt and no makeup or long nails.  I tell myself "don't stare, don't stare, I think it's one of us".  I don't see him again, and I assume it was just a manly woman (surely there aren't crossdressers in my hobby, I've never seen one in my life and if there were they'd stay in the closet).  So people are commenting about other things about the show, including a guy waiting in line that decided to insult some ladies.  Pretty much everyone wants to call this guy out (funny how they all want more women in the hobby, but do little when women are insulted at events).  Then someone posted a random photo of themselves taking a selfie with the crossdresser!  So of course I have to ask "So who is this person, I saw them at the show?" and almost immediately people start saying exactly who he is (and posting other photos of him at other similar type locations), even giving out his full real name.  Not only is this person obviously secure with his half gendered appearance, but not a single joke or insulting comment about him.  He's totally accepted in this hobby as he is.

So that begs the question, did people learn their lesson about the Jenner jokes, or does it become peer pressure of "Well I better not speak up about making fun of them.. because they're part of my hobby and I might run into them, or if I say something I might be the only one with that opinion and I'll look like the ass".  It's almost as if because it's expected to make fun of celebrities (no matter what it's about), but when it's someone in your own circle, then it becomes something different.  Sort of like if you have parents that are homophobic, but you come out to them suddenly they realize they have to accept it (or their viewpoint changes).

I also wonder if I could get away with a little gender bending cosplay at the next event in the spring?