Monday, April 16, 2007

the show must go on

After much controversy and dissension and of course, drama!!!, The Midnight Checkout Queens went on stage and performed gamely after several last-minute personnel changes and prop acquisitions. Our fearless leader Jana bravely stepped into the breach and filled in as the title character during several numbers. And special props out to our newest MCQ members, Sheldon (as the pink-haired band member - and he went the extra mile and actually bleached and permanently dyed his hair and came up with a guitar at the last moment for us!) and Becca (as backstage hand) for all their work. We actually sold out both nights and the audience was the most into the show that I've seen in a while. Jenn reported than one girl even punched her back when she jumped into the crowd and faked hitting them, during the "Angry Inch" number.

Hopefully we'll have another weekend set aside in a few months to perform again. And, believe it or not, I've been roped into possibly being a Hedwig next time! I certainly have my work cut out for me - I'll need to watch the movie like a billion more times and spend many horrifying hours in front of a mirror figuring out Hedwig's moves. Hopefully I'll be up to snuff and be allowed on stage! We'll see.

Regardless of all the bad stuff that occurred last weekend but that will remain undocumented here, I had fun this past weekend as the backstage costumier and briefly as the crowd-surfing drag Yitzhak at the end of "Midnight Radio." Hopefully next show I won't be too wracked with nerves in my new role...

Sunday, April 08, 2007

the librarian emerges

It occurred to me today that in the coming up on three years I've been posting to this blog with "librarian" in the title, I haven't once discussed any aspect of my profession in detail (although it should be noted that the current title of this blog only came into existence last September). That is going to change now and going forward. I intend to at least have an occasional post about various aspects of being a librarian or about the realm of information.

I'm sure that scares the hell out of those of my loyal readers unfamiliar with the exciting world of the library professional. Rest assured, I won't plague these pages with treatise-length diatribes on the Dewey Decimal system vs. the Library of Congress or the best way to shush a loud patron or discuss any of the other ridiculous personality traits assigned to librarians by stereotypes and shallow mass media coverage. Except, of course, to highlight the absurdity of such stereotypes.

In the last year or so I've struggled with many things, not least among them attaining geographical proximity to my girlfriend, getting my surgery done and recovering from it, and just figuring out who I am and how I want to live life fully as a woman. I think in that time I've also come to truly love and appreciate my profession and my current job. I'm one month shy of 4 years at this college, as well as 10 years in the library profession, but it has only been recently that I've realized how much I love my job.

As my therapist pointed out to me: having a stable, reasonably salaried job in which I have an abundance of confidence has allowed me to focus my energies toward overcoming some of the other struggles I listed above. I also realize that having this stable, modestly paid job in a traditionally progressive industry that was so supportive of my transition is a luxury that many of my fellow trans sisters and brothers do not.

Anyways, I'll be down in Arlington for four days in a week at the Computers in Libraries conference (which I love because it blends the tech and traditional library functions well - right up my alley - although the Off-Campus conference which is only held every 2 years is my fave) and staying with my wonderful aunt and uncle and their three kids. I'm not a serious conference goer - I prefer to attend a few select sessions, go to maybe one or two social functions and then get out and about and explore whatever city the conference is being held in. But this time is better as I get to spend some quality time with relatives who I normally only get to see once a year in the summer. The (hopefully) warmer weather down in VA is just icing on the cake...

Friday, April 06, 2007

debt suey

holymutherfuckinggoddamnshit! I received a check in the mail the other day from my health insurer for $14,000 dollars and some loose change! I knew they had said they would cover the cost of the surgery, but I still had my doubts as to how many hoops and months of waiting they'd make me jump through to get reimbursed.

Luckily I had done my homework and had lined up all my document ducks in a row, and so about 6 weeks after sending them my claim with all supporting documentation, they sent me back a check for all but two grand of the total. I do not begrudge that out-of-pocket $2,000 expense - in fact I welcome it - it gives me a little more sense of accomplishment. I'm the one who did this. I made it all happen and it feels fucking good.

Of course, that money will only be sitting in my bank account for a few days since it has to go immediately to paying back that portion of the cost my parents fronted me, as well as the portion I borrowed more formally with interest attached. Not to mention paying down the high credit card debt I ran up in trying to stash away cash for this monstrous expense.

I'm still shocked everything went so smoothly and as planned. In some ways it all feels like a dream that I still haven't woken up from. I sometimes feel a fleeting sense of guilt in those quiet moments. What did I do to deserve all this while so many t-girls and t-men are struggling just to survive? These waves of guilt are only temporary, but they linger around me during my recurring swings of mild depression like the scent of overripe chopped onions on the tips of my knife wielding hands...