Thursday, 27 August 2015

A brush with mortality

    A first for me this week, being admitted to a hospital. It all escalated rather quickly.
    From the dog having one of her infrequent ex-rescue-dog-returns-to-feral moments on Sunday and sinking her teeth into my little finger, through it going septic despite a lot of antiseptic cleaning out, a local NHS First Aid clinic, the hospital outpatient hand injury clinic, and finally two nights on a ward. Surgery under local anaesthetic to open up my hand and clean out the infection, lots of dressings, antibiotic jabs in the middle of the night, the works. Back home now, antibiotic pills, a return on Friday to check up on its healing.
    We are accustomed to modern medicine, it seems routine, mundane even. Truth is though this was something that could well have killed me a hundred years ago. People still lose digits and even hands, as my surgeon pointed out it's no laughing matter.
    So, a brush with mortality. Guess it had to happen, sooner or later.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Trans eye for a queer guy

    Enough people to fill a medium sized football stadium, packed into a park in Brighton. A parade of buses, lots of stalls selling "interesting" merchandise, huge disco tents, and bands. The Human League reduced to sounding like a Human League cover band, and Fatboy Slim looking very much as he was at his peak. Two more names ticked off the "Yes, seen them" list.
    Yes, it's Brighton Pride. I was there with my friends yet again to hand out trade union stickers and wave (literally) the flag for workplace representation.
    I've been to a few Prides in my time. Most recently when I've been working the event, either for the union or for the Dawn Skinner Fund. This one though was the biggest by far. It's one of the biggest in Europe, and about the only thing it shared with last weekend's stay at Cobham Services was that all of human life was on show. Sometimes rather too much of it at once, but it was a gay Pride event.
    Aside from Brighton's Clare Project, not much trans representation. Gay and lesbian subcultures were very much in evidence. Drag queens, looking as over the top wonderful as always. Given my recent post on drag and the trans community, very welcome as far as I was concerned. And lots of comically bad crossdressing from our gay friends too. Not drag, nor aimed at us, just young gay men having a good time and sticking two fingers up at convention.
    I was reminded of the TV show from a few years ago, Queer eye for a straight guy, in which a team of gay men sorted out the style disasters of hapless straight men. Perhaps the trans community should provide style makeovers to novice gay crossdressers as a public service. Such gems as "It helps if you find a dress on which the zip will do up", or "£10 novelty flight attendant outfits don't even look good on 20 year old girls, put it back".
    I think we could be onto a winner, don't you?