The List

Looking for the GOLDEN LIST with TRANSFRIENDLY & QUEERfriendly venues in the Netherlands?
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Get caught in The Web

the-web-amsterdam-transgender

The Web in Amsterdam is 1 van de eerste café’s waar ik als transman zeer welkom werd geheten. Enkele jaren geleden vond ik het hoognodig en belangrijk dat al die saaie homo’s ook eens door zouden gaan krijgen hoe knap en geil transmannen eigenlijk kunnen zijn, dus toog ik enthousiast naar verschillende cruising plekken, met wisselend succes. The Web was samen met Club Church de enige die al wat ervaring had met de harige variant van het trans-spectrum en gaf mij zelfs enkele slimme veiligheids tips waar ik zelf nog niet aan gedacht had, zoals: eerst iemand oppikken in de bar, en op dat moment in die veilige ruimte je transstatus onthullen, in plaats van dit te doen op een niet zelf gekozen moment in de niet-bewaakte darkroom.

Daarom was ik natuurlijk waanzinnig blij toen ik hoorde dat notabene The Web nu een trans event heeft! Het draagt de vreemde naam “Kiss of a Spider Woman”  en lijkt een initiatief van de ogenschijnlijk-niet-trans-maar-toch-sympatieke DJ Bo Monde. Ik ben er nu 3x langs geweest. Vooral de eerste keren was het duidelijk dat een aantal reguliere klanten een beetje schrokken van de aanwezigheid van transvrouwen (de variant op hakken)  en niet veel weten van transmannen maar als je een evenement als dit lang genoeg volhoudt, dan komt dat wel goed.

Verandering behoeft een lange adem!
Dus geef het een kans: elke 3e donderdag van de maand in The Web.

Andere nieuwe hangouts:

  • The Kiki in Getto
    “Soulfood, cocktails, tea, salacious gossip, fine music, art and performance, a marvelous party where everyone is welcome to fight ennui, relax and celebrate the fabulousness of all the colours in the gender rainbow.”
  • en een nieuwe editie van kink BDSM voor trans* personen in Nijmegen op 17 december 2017.

Squirt aan de Waal

squirt-aan-de-waal

Nijmegen heeft er een nieuw feest bij voor wie wil spelen met seksualiteit, kink en meer. Het feest is geboren in de transgender gemeenschap van de stad in samenwerking met Squirt Du Soleil en verwelkomt open-minded queers, mannen, vrouwen en anderen. Kom langs en volg een korte workshop, drink een drankje en wie weet?

Bij de knusse bar met speelruimtes en darkroom van de Chaps is er de ruimte om te doen wat je wil. Niets hoeft, heel veel mag. Er zijn kluisjes en een douche aanwezig.

Zondag 12 maart 2017, 15.00-.21.00 uur

Locatie: Chaps

Workshops:  Continue reading →

The nasty 2016 and hope for 2017

earth-without-humans_paris

So whenever people mention the disaster that was 2016, the first thing they mention is the death of David Bowie, which is indeed in my personal top 3 of utterly disillusioning depressing events of the-year-that-shall-not-be-mentioned. But let’s remind ourselves of two more anti-queer disasters: the horrendous Orlando shooting at Pulse and the anti-trans bathroom bill. Also the election of an orange twitter potato as US president should lead to worries about the future.

Brexit made things get ugly closer to home, in Europe, and there are many right-winged populist parties in the Netherlands, Germany and France that are quickly gaining potential votes for upcoming elections. I am very much against making a Godwin, but this all feels awfully familiair…

This is not the kind of life I was expecting to live 15 years ago, when I still thought everything, really everything could and would become more progressive. Around me though I here a lot of people encouraging each other to step up our games and fight the big fight all over again.

So what does this mean for this website? With its dynamic list of transfriendly venues? It means Continue reading →

The Blacklist has hipsters in it

hipster-dogI started the Golden List with transfriendly places a couple of years ago. About once every year I had to go back and update it, but this year I’ve found myself having to go back to it much more often. Not because , one would hope, there might be an increase of venues but actually because of the rapid disappearance of free zones.
And there is another trend: hipsters.
I am not against ‘hip’ people as a group, such negativity itself is now the trend and this one has anti-art and anti-intellectual characteristics that I think are very suspicious. What I definately don’t like however is the disappearance of squats and their replacement with hip venues that abuse the squatting and ‘Berlin’ aesthetics but sell coffee for 8 euros.

I have now finally extended and updated the BLACKLIST with examples of places that seem nice and creatively playful on first sight, but on closer look it turns out their ‘alternative’ outer shell is only skin deep, while serving a questionable crowd.
All the venues that I’ve put on the list so far are in Amsterdam but their style (and pricing) is spreading to the rest of the country. It’s a trend to ‘look-cheap-and-messy-yet-serve-super-expensive-junk-on-wooden-crates’. I think it’s fair to say this is not queerfriendly and it marginalizes economically precarious trans people even more. Continue reading →

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!:

~

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. 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 Continue reading →

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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