Sunday, March 27, 2011

Does A Plate Of Nachos Constitute A Balanced Meal?

You've got your whole grain corn chips, vegetables, including onions, peppers, tomatoes, and garlic, although some would argue those are not vegetables at all, but fruits instead, and then you have your protein based dairy products, like cheese, and sour cream. In my case however, I substitute low fat yogurt for sour cream.

It certainly is a satisfying meal, although some would claim that it is essentially junk food.

I had nachos for supper last night. Does that make me a bad girl?

Melissa XX

Saturday, March 26, 2011

I'm So Excited! (Sports alert for those so disinclined!)

I'm about to lose control, and I think I like it!

No.........I haven't met the love of my life, but I have met a bunch of guys that I absolutely adore! That would be Virginia Commonwealth University's basketball team! Sorry girls, but I do like sports even if you don't, and especially local teams that I can relate too. I used to watch VCU basketball games religiously way back in the seventies and early eighties, but then they went through a long period of decline, and I simply lost interest. I have to admit that I really didn't care all that much about the team until the very end of their season this year, when they had the chance to win their conference tournament. They did well, but wound up being runners up, and hence were all but excluded from entry into the National College Athletic Association's national tournament. But when tournament selections were made, the selection committee saw something special in VCU, and selected them as an at large team! That meant that they had to play one more game, than all the other regularly selected teams, in order to qualify for the regular field. Critics panned them, saying they had no right to be in the tournament, when other teams were more qualified. we trans sisters all know, who is, or who is not qualified for something, is a matter of opinion, and so it was for VCU!

They silenced their critics, by soundly beating the University of Southern California 59-46. Still there were nay sayers. They would never be able to beat Big East powerhouse, Georgetown they said, but beat them they did, and not only did they beat them, they humiliated them, beating them 74-56! They then went on to humble Big Ten conference, Perdue, beating then 94-76!

Tonight, after several days layoff, they played Florida State University in San Antonio, Texas. It was nip and tuck from the very start, since both teams were very evenly matched, but in the end VCU pulled out a one point win in overtime! I watched it all on streaming video on my laptop, since the regular station carrying it on TV, was a cable station that I didn't have access to.

As soon as the game started, I knew it was going to be a cliff hanger. Florida got off to a sight early start, but VCU adjusted defensively, and by halftime, VCU was leading by several points. The second half was a nail biter. There was no way to predict who would come out on top. Finally at the end of regulation time the two teams were tied, and so an overtime period had to be played. In the end VCU nudged Florida State by just one point, beating them 72-71! What a nerve racking game! I sat with my fingers crossed for the last thirty minutes, hoping VCU would come out on top! Now they have to go on to play the University of Kansas, who beat the living piss out of another local team, the University of Richmond tonight. I don't think VCU will let them do that to them, but Kansas may still be more than they can handle. We'll see. My heart is with VCU. They have already gone farther than they, or the University of Richmond has ever gone in the national tournament, so even if they lose to Kansas, they will still be grand heros back home!

.........We now return you to your regular trans related conversations. *wink*

Melissa XX

Monday, March 21, 2011

Into Jaws Of The Beast

I was making my way west on I-64 this evening, after having supper at my mother's condo. I was about 20 miles into my trip with another 20 or so to go, when I saw the first lightning bolt streak across the western sky. It was dusk, and the bolt had a surreal orange hue. I had watched a weather report earlier in the day, and the meteorologist warned us to expect some thunderstorms in the evening hours. I didn't like what I saw. I had a bad feeling I would be in the thick of it, just as I was pulling off the Interstate at my exit. Since I had stopped at Krogers after leaving my mother's, I had groceries to unload, and I didn't want to do it in the rain.

The sky got progressively darker as I got closer to home, and a veritable light show ensued in the sky before me. Bolt, after bolt lit up the sky, no longer orange in color, but fluorescent white against the blackened night sky. My windshield began to show drops of rain just before I reached my exit, but not enough to turn on the wipers. I left the Interstate at my exit, and made a left turn for the one mile ride south to US Route 250, where I turned right for the two mile ride west through the hills to where I live, when all of a sudden, the heavens opened up, and the deluge began! With both headlights and fog lamps on, and windshield wipers slinging water at at full speed, it was everything I could do to see the road out in front of me. Fortunately I had two other cars in front of me, and their tail lights provided a beacon for me to follow, otherwise I would have had to pull off the road. The intensity of the cloudburst, was reminiscent of the downpours I experienced on a daily basis, during the Monsoon season in South East Asia over 40 years ago. The normal 55MPH ride down US 250 to my subdivision, was reduced to a 15-20MPH crawl. By the time I pulled into my driveway, the rain had slacked off considerably, but it was still coming down in sufficient quantities, that I would have been soaked to the bone, had I not remembered to take my umbrella, but how do you hold a large golf umbrella, while opening vehicle doors, retrieving and carrying bags of groceries up a flight of deck steps, and then have to negotiate a locked door as well? Needless to say, when it was all said and done, I was more than a little bit wet, but on a positive note, the Dakota got a good spring washing!

After nearly a month's absence caused by illness and other plans, my bro-in-law showed up at mom's tonight, so once again the conversation was dominated by him and his plans for the future. And speaking of his plans, they include a glorious (for us *wink*) 3 week trip down to southern Florida this week, with his new main squeeze, so the next three weeks at mom's should be all girl affairs!

Mom served up beef tips and mushrooms in gravy over egg noodles, with fresh steamed asparagus slathered in butter, and a tossed garden salad. Es schmeckte so gut! Since I live alone, meals at home are generally pretty basic affairs. A piece of baked chicken, or fish, some microwaved frozen veggies, and some sort of beans, or a baked tuber of some kind is the boring norm. It's good to go to mom's once a week for some variety, and of course, it's always a surprise what she is going to serve, since she doesn't send out menues in advance.

After a long cold winter, spring has finally arrived here in the Piedmont. I noticed as I was pulling out of my driveway this afternoon, that my Redbud was just beginning to bloom, and further on down the road, at the mini-storage facility, the Bradford Pears were in full splendor! 77°F/25°C was the high today!

I've been living out in the country for over 17 years now. It has it's rewards, but sometimes I get nostalgic for city life.

Melissa XX

Friday, March 18, 2011

Running The A/C One Day After St. Patty's Day

Is 83°F/28.3°C hot enough for you on March18th? It's 25°F above normal for this time of year, but so what? Just like last year, spring has decided to say the hell with convention, and take a flying leap! It's nearly 11:00 PM, and I'm sitting here in a short denim skirt and a tank top. The outside temperature is still in the 70's, and higher still inside, because I had both the oven and clothes dryer on earlier. It was becoming so uncomfortable, that I had to switch the air conditioning units on to cool things down a bit.

All of the trees in the Piedmont are budding now, and the forsythia is now in full bloom! In Richmond, 40 miles east of here, flowering trees are blooming everywhere! It will be another week or two, before we see that here. Our night time temperatures are colder, so we are usually two weeks behind areas east the James River fall line. For those who don't know, Richmond is 223 feet lower in elevation than where I live, and apparently that make a significant difference climate wise.

Because of my normal late winter malaise, I've been lackadaisical about my epilation over the last couple of months, and when I finally decided to tackle it yesterday, I realized it had been a month since I last epilated! I wasn't exactly furry, since over the years a lot of the hair had been eliminated, and the rest has at least been slowed down significantly, but there were hairs that had a months growth, and that meant they were long! Epilating long hairs is not a pleasant undertaking. It's much less painful, if the epilator can grab the hair at the skin's surface, rather than a quarter to a half an inch away. When that happens, the shock of the hair being whipped out of its follicle, is significantly increased, and the sensation can be quite prickly, not to mention the occasional drop of blood that gets pulled out along with the hair! When it was all done, I looked like I had the measles! Little red dots all over me! Fortunately they were all gone by the next morning.

For those of you who love the game of college basketball (probably only some of my American readers), The Big Dance is in full swing! For those who don't know what that is, The Big Dance is a nickname for the National College Athletic Association's anual national basketball tournament, where 64 teams; expanded to 68 this year, compete for the national collegiate title. It's a really big deal, because college teams from all over the country get a shot at becoming national champs, and sometimes smaller schools upset much larger ones, and go on to become Cinderella teams. The Big Dance........Cinderella ..........what's not to like about something, with names like that? Occasionally a Cinderella team will make it to the final four, and that's a really big deal. Virginia had five potential Cinderellas in the tournament, Hampton, Old Dominion (ODU), George Mason (GMU), and two Richmond schools, The University of Richmond (UR), and Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). After two rounds, GMU, UR and VCU are all still in it, after beating teams that have been very strong traditionally, so we'll have to see how far they can go. All three teams are showing an intensity of play, that bodes well for future success. I just hope they can keep it up. Of course after living only blocks away for many years, 11th seeded (in the SW Regionals)VCU is my favorite. They hit 12 out of 23 shots from 3 point range tonight, to beat former powerhouse and 6th seeded Georgetown, by 18 points! They will go on to play 3rd seed Purdue on Sunday. Will they make it to the final four? Who knows, but at least they are still on the road, and every game from now on will be a great adventure!

I know I'm boring my girlfriend, Caroline to death with all this this talk about basketball, since she isn't the least bit interested in competitive sports. And truthfully, I can't say that I blame her, considering that when growing up, boys tended to exclude those like us, from pickup games out on the playground, or in the school gym. I was more fortunate in that regard, in that I was tall, and although I was never picked 1st, 2nd, and even rarely 3rd, I usually did get picked 4th or 5th for basketball. I attribute that solely to my height, since I stunk at the game, until I had played for a few years, and finally got the hang of it. I did play basketball in High School and again in the Army, and I enjoyed doing it, but I must confess, I'd much rather have enjoyed being a cheerleader! Short skirts, hair ribbons, and everyone in school adoring'd have to be crazy to not want that over being a second string basketball player!

I was rummaging through some of my old blog posts today, and I noticed a significant drop in the number of posts from last March. I can't explain why. Maybe I'm just running out of relevant things to say. One can only talk so much of their gender identity dysphoria, and related memories, before one runs out of anything interesting to say. I do hope I haven't become a bore to all of you. I always fear that, because it seem that I'm usually talking about the weather, or some other mundane subject these days, rather than anything trans related. Maybe I'll just have to start talking off the top of my head, regardless of the topic. Oh god, what a pitfall that could be! Can you imagine anything more boring than a blog about politics, or current events that have already been discussed ad nauseam?

Speaking of politics, I think my mail carrier must be a Republican, or even worse, a Tea Partier. I contributed money to the campaign of Barrak Obama, when he was running for president. Consequently when he got elected, I got put on his mailing list. In American politics the quest for future campaign funds never ends, so former donors are constantly mailed request for more money. When the president does this, he usually sends a nice portrait of himself, or a print of the White House. It comes in a large envelope, that clearly states who it is from, and on the front of the envelope, it says in bold lettering: Artwork enclosed - Do Not Bend! Today I received such a mailing from President Obama, and just like all the other ones I have received in the past, it had a sharp crease running right down the middle, just above where it said, Artwork enclosed - Do Not Bend! I'm not sure if she hates the president, or if she is just clueless, since she often puts my next door neighbors mail in my box too!

Melissa XX

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Whew! I Thought I Had Been Exiled!

Imagine that! Being suddenly and surreptitiously disconnected from all those you hold most dear! What had I done to deserve this awful fate?

For those who do not know yet, yesterday, I logged into my Gmail account, and was given a message informing me, that my account had been disabled, due to "suspicious activity". Suspicious activity? What in the world does that mean? It gave me a page full of optons, so I pondered them. At first I wondered, had I violated some obscur term of agrement, and offended the delicate sensibilities of the Google hierarchy? Then I thought, no........nothing on my blog coud even come close to some of the risqué stuff I have seen on countless other blogs. Not on any of your blogs of course......dear sweet innocent sisters! *wink*

I was given instructions to give them my wireless phone number, and they would text me a verification code, that I could reactivate my account with. Now like most internet troubleshooting problems, the instructions given to resolve issues were minimal and quite vague, leaving me to guess exactly what they meant. I have a Verizon wireless USB modem that I connect to the internet with. It has a designated phone number, and according to its on screen display, is capable of receiving text messages. So I submitted the phone number of my USB modem, thinking I would get a text message displayed in the modem's window, but no! I got nothing. I tried again, with the same result, and again, and again, and again, but to no avail. Soon frustration began to set in. I was upset! Through no fault of my own, I was totally disconnected from the outside world, and I deeply resented who or whatever caused it. I decided to take a break, and have some lunch. While eating my cup of chicken gumbo, and ham and cheese sandwich, I thought........let's try my regular cell phone number after lunch, maybe that will work. So after lunch, I typed in my cell phone number, and within 30 seconds, my phone buzzed! I flipped it open (Yes......dinosaur that I am, I still have a flip phone!) and lo and behold, there was a text message with my verification code! Suddenly my spirits were lifted!

I typed the verification code into my laptop, and hit the send button, and voilà! There I was! Just like Dorothy clicking her heels two times and saying,"There's no place like home!", I was home again! Immediately I ran to say hello to Auntie really! After all I was in Virginia, and Auntie Em was four states away in Kansas, but it was still good to be home, and in touch again!

I've been watching the Virginia State Highschool basketball championships.......both boys and girls......on the TV, with the sound turned off, and simultaneously listening to the grand works of Mahler. Oddly, the heroics on the court, blended remarkably well with the 4th movement of Mahler's Symphony #2; In Tempo des Scherzos. Then again, maybe the wine was just that good, and horrors of horrors, even P-Diddy, or God forbid, Usher would have sounded as good while watching the kids play! I hope not! If that's the case, then please rush me into re-hab!

I've enjoyed what I've seen. I used to play B-ball in both high school, and in the Army, and for a time after the Army, in pickup games on public courts. It really is a great game, that keeps you fit, but it's no game for old timers. Too much wear and tear on the feet and joints, plus you lose speed as you age, and you can't keep up with the more athletic youngsters. And for those who think that B-ball is just for men, it's not. I've played in pickup games, where I was being guarded by an athletic young woman, who had no qualms whatsoever of laying her shoulder into me, to drive to the hoop, or leaning her back into me while I was playing in the post post position. I have nothing but admiration for such young athletic females.

In Jenny's blog today, She talked about walking past a group of seemingly harmless teenagers, and even though she describes the image that she often presents to the world, as that of a scruffy bloke, she still felt vulnerable to the possibility of their hurtful adolescent jabs, proving that this rough exterior that many of us non-transitioners carry, is but a thin veil, that we wear to bluff our way through this world of hurt. Jenny sweetie, I know where you are coming from! You have my heart, dear. As I said on your blog, The girl inside, is a lot more vulnerable, than the scruffy male exterior would suggest.

Melissa XX

Friday, March 4, 2011

Changes Are Coming To The Piedmont

It's not quite spring yet, but you can tell that the flora is desperately waiting to spring into bloom. There is a bush at the head of my driveway that just couldn't quite wait. Impatient rascal that it is, it decided in a spate of unseasonably warm temperatures last week, to prematurely unfurl it's blossoms, if you can even call them blossoms. A scraggly barren bush, with little green caterpillar like blossoms hanging from its wispy thin appendages is a more apt description.

The temperature has been on a roller coaster ride for past two and a half weeks now. Soaring into the mid to upper 70's some days, then plummeting back down into the low 30's , and upper 20's at night, before rising only into the 40's, or low 50's for the next few days, then soaring back up into the upper 70's again! So, the heat has been on and off according to the fickle whims of mother mature, but the mild temperatures have tickled most of the trees into budding. Within the next few weeks, spring should be busting out all over!


In my last post, I mentioned hearing the ominous snarl of a dangerously close, large wild cat, after stepping out onto my rear deck last Saturday night, for a breath of the cool night air. Hear a close approximation of what I heard here. The only difference is the pitch was just slightly higher, and there was no low frequency rumble at the end. My instant reaction was WTF? My fears were somewhat relieved when I read today, that the US Fish and Wildlife Service has declared the Eastern Cougar to be extinct. But what else could explain what I heard, unless it was a very large and aggressive bobcat? Bobcats, which are larger than domestic, or feral cats, are about the size of a medium sized dog. While not as abundant as deer and other wildlife, they do habit most of North America, and are occasionally taken by hunters, here in the Piedmont, but they are shy creatures that like to avoid contact with humans. My only guess is that whatever it was had just made a kill, and saw me as an uninvited guest showing up for dinner. Fair enough mystery cat, as long as you weren't sizing me up for a future midnight feast! Hmmm......thinking maybe I should invest in a shotgun.


I shopped for groceries at a fairly new Krogers today, and every time I passed a stock clerk in the aisles, they flashed a smile and said hello! I went to the self checkout, so that I could bag my own groceries, but they always have a clerk standing by to persuade the computer to cooperate with you, and he too flashed a warm smile, and thanked me for shopping there! What is this world coming too? Could it be that we are we actually becoming civilized once again, or are my more cynical instincts correct, and as soon as this store has established its cliental, its staff will become as surly and uncaring as all the others? I don't know, but until I do, I think I shall continue shop for my groceries there.

Muammar al-Gaddafi

What can I say? What can any reasonable human being say about this supremely bizarre and ignorant self-imposed Libyan supreme leader? The son of an illiterate camel herder, he was once invited to a foreign state dinner, where shrimp cocktail was served as an appetizer. Gaddafi was aghast! "You people eat insects?" he was reported to have said. How in the world has this bumpkin ruled an oil rich nation for over forty years? How will he avoid being hung from a lamp post by his countrymen?

Lucy Melford

Our dear girlfreind is in Nuffield hospital in Brighton, recovering from her GRS. Please email her at, or leave a comment on her blog at, to let her know you have her in your heart. She really is a dear, and would love to hear from you!

Melissa XX