Dutch event: Trans en bloot

Finally there’s a Dutch equivalent to the widely-acclaimed TransBare All retreat. If you don’t speak Dutch but wish to attend anyway, contact the organisation. I’m sure it will be great, so be quick!:

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Meld je uiterlijk 24 april aan!

Eerste Trans & Bloot Weekend voor transmannen

imagesearchBegin mei 2015 organiseert Transman.nl het vernieuwende Trans & Bloot Weekend. Tijdens dit weekend bieden we een afwisselend programma met diverse workshops rondom het thema “thuis voelen in je lichaam”. Aanmelden voor het weekend kan tot en met 24 april. Dus… hak de knoop door en meld je snel aan!

Het Trans & Bloot Weekend (TBW) is van 1 t/m 3 mei 2015. Tijdens het TBW zijn er diverse workshops, waarin we praten, voelen, ervaringen uitwisselen en/of creatief bezig zijn. Het programma is afwisselend, zodat er voor ieder wat wils is. We zullen het dit weekend o.a. hebben over: Verwachtingen, Uit de kleren!, Over de brug en In of uit de kast?.
Tijdens het weekend is er natuurlijk ook veel gelegenheid voor ontmoeting, onderlinge uitwisseling en gezelligheid. Continue reading →

Back to square one

Amsterdam is changing, and not for the better. It seems that everything we have been fighting for the past 30 years is flushed down the drains. The recent evictions of all major squats have meant that my Golden List of Transgender-friendly venues is now almost cut by a third. Week by week I have to delete entries because they no longer exist.
And the general public? They eat this up with much delight. Not realizing that squatters spent a lot of time and energy preserving these buildings, hosting events for a diverse community, providing life with more than just survival value for those of low income and developing creative spaces. These kinds of places are what keep a city alive and with it’s ending the essence of urban Amsterdam dies.
Yes I am angry, but mostly sad. We have been living in a neo-restrictive neo-conservative fearocracy since 2001 now and the ending is not in sight yet.
We need spaces for minorities, for trans* people without papers and for poor queers to keep on feeding ourselves with new ideas, away from the mainstream. I will keep on looking for safe trans/gender/queer spaces, but it’s getting harder and harder.

On social media I noticed this picture, and I feel like posting it here too because I think it really rings true:
evictedAmsterdam

Let’s just hope that the next generation will see the light again.

My genitalia on TV

I’ve been on Dutch national television, explicitly speaking about my “man cunt” and cruising as a proud transman with cis gay men. As part of the television series “Tent & Seks” by Sunny Bergman which breaks ground slowly but surely.
I’m being interviewed on a bunch of pillows in a tent in episode 3 of this series, named ‘Out of the Box’. About the fluidity of sexual preference and the fluidity of gender. This episode was broadcasted on july the 31st 2014.
I’m not super happy with the quotes they decided to take from me (the editing process was something I had no control over) but my real and only purpose to be in this was to show to the Dutch viewers that genderqueer/gay transmen’s existence is not some weird freakish Berlin/San Francisco phenomena, but that we also exist in the muddy landscape of Holland.
It’s in Dutch but there are many English speaking people in it as well. Amongst them two transvestites who verbalize their sense of self really well + two elderly gay bears that speak about how the mainstream doesn’t perceive them as gay while they are in fact deeply in love.

Watch all the other episiodes here too: www.npo.nl/tent-en-seks
Screen shot 2014-07-22 at 1.41.17 PMfl

I sent a complaint to GayRomeo…

planet-romeoI sent a complaint to GayRomeo…
…and I didn’t even get a lousy T-shirt.
…all I got was a very nice answer.
Really. Very nice indeed, but it probably will not change much.

Once in a while, I get harassed by gay guys for my trans status that I display openly. Don’t worry, it’s very rare. So whenever it does happen, I feel sort of ‘seduced’ to get into a smart dialogue with these people, even while knowing that some really are too stupid. Yes, dimwitted people do exist. And sometimes there just isn’t enough vomit in the world.
I can block these awful guys (they’re usually young and know nothing of the world; they may be afraid to lose their gay identity when discovering they feel I am quite handsome, so yeah, I know where it’s coming from). But… If I block them nothing is gained. It’s a systematic problem that needs to be addressed more publicly. Continue reading →

Cruising guide for transmen

The new year is here and I have updated the ever popular Golden List with *new* transfriendly venues in the Netherlands.
I am happy to say some major progress has taken place, since the all new gay sauna Nieuwezijds has included the ‘safe sex for transmen’ link! This is a first for the Netherlands really, for a gay venue to visibly be inclusive towards transmen.
It must have something to do with the fact that the ever so friendly people of Church are behind this. Quite avant garde.
At the moment their space is actually not safe enough for transmen, but they’ve only just started.
Read all about it in the updated Golden List under the letter ‘N’ of Nieuwezijds.

cartoonThe STD info page on the transman.nl website is currently the only explicit and practical hands-on safe sex page for FTM’s in Dutch.
This year a rather more subdued, but very respectable, new site for Dutch transgender youth was put online. And I am happy to have been part of the info-leaflet. The leaflet has been spread all around the nation and I drew the full-page illustration for it + there’s a small interview with me about cruising. Continue reading →

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