Sunday, 22 May 2011

Uncomfortable evening...

I think the anti-muse has come to visit my overnight.  Either that or the alcohol and sugar from last night have removed it from my head.  I had a post in my head yesterday, but for the life of me I have no idea what it was…

So here is the reason for the sugar and alcohol instead.

A friend was the first of us to turn 35 and invited a few of us to a ‘Dessert Buffet’ last night.  It was lovely (she is an amazing cook) and there was a huge spread of goodies from brownies with marshmallows, to cupcakes with marshmallows or chocolate chips, a chocolate cake, a poppy seed cake, cheesecake, a strawberry trifle, a strawberry parfait to home-made ice cream and some sorbets with spirits to drizzle over.

I managed to try about half of the things on offer – but as you can imagine they were all quite rich and at a certain point you just can’t do any more!

Near the end of the evening it got very uncomfortable though.  I’m not sure how, but the conversation turned to transitioning, or more precise to a colleague of someone who was.  And it was not a pleasant discussion.  Both Mrs Stace and I kept very quiet (I really do not want anyone there questioning me…) and were extremely uncomfortable.  Not so much hate, more ridicule.  This didn’t feel any better…  The conversation didn’t last very long, but it did leave a lasting bad taste in our mouths.  One thing that did surprise me…  One of the guys there is normally someone who comes out with things that just annoy me.  He is very much a topper type person (from Dilbert) and comes out with some of the most sexist and discriminatory comments.  And I don’t recall him saying much at all during this part of the conversation.

The real shame is that this is someone that Mrs Stace gets on very well with, and we would like to tell – so that Mrs Stace has someone outside of family to talk to.  We haven’t so far as she is known as ‘Radio ’ due to her ability to keep things to herself (last night’s conversation a perfect case in point).  After last night I guess there is another reason why she won’t be told…

After all that has gone well in the last few weeks, this was a real confidence killer...


  1. So sorry this happens to others too. There have been times when I thought Mrs. Halle was starting to relax a bit after we had talked about letting a few people 'in', but all it takes is some backhanded comment, and the confidence disappears.

    Sounds like last night was a full-blown disaster. Arrrggg!

  2. You and Mrs. Stace kept quiet. Is it possible that the person that surprised you by his quietness remained silent for the same reasons as you both? Maybe a sign as to whom Mrs. Stace should choose as first friend to share family secrets with. Stay confident - you can.

  3. Sometimes...sometimes...people change their tune when the person transitioning is someone they know personally. No guarantee of this, of course, but I recall someone having that experience. Some person had seemed very transphobic, but when they found out that a friend was transitioning, they saw things differently.

  4. I have a friend just like your "Radio" friend, I'd love to have the Long Chat with her but I know that's the point at which I lose control of the information.

    Ariel's point rings very true for me. My best friend C has been great about it all, but I'm fairly certain he might not have been so charitable had I not been a close friend of his.

    Don't let these things dent your confidence. People say things and get caught up in a groupthink that they might not follow individually.

  5. Halle: Not a full blown disaster, after all we have said nothing to anyone there. But it was just a reminder of just how people can react to this type of thing...

    Ellena: I don't think so, he wasn't silent, just not as vocal as the girls... Seeing as I think this was the first time we had seen him in about 5 years, I don't think he is someone that will find out...

    Ariel: I really hope that you are right there. She'll be supportive of Mrs Stace I think - after all they have been friends since the mid 90's. Quite what she is going to do with me I am not sure. I suppose the advantage of it being someone close is that you can see the person behind, rather than the stereotype.

    I hope...

    Jenny: Exactly - that's the point when you lose control. That is the exact phrase that we used when we said that we would not be telling her. I know that you lose a little control, and take a bit of a risk with every person that you tell - but I think there is a difference between diving with a scuba tank and dry suit and trying to dive 100m wearing only a bathing suit. (Sorry for the poor metaphor there, but I was trying not to use one involving cars for once!)

    I hope that the confidence is a temporary glitch - I think that I am getting over it, but won't find out until the next time I go out...

    Thanks for the comments all,

  6. It's not good when those type of things happen. Perhaps doubly so when you feel you can't speak out against it.

    Interesting that 'Topper' kept his trap shut though. Tomorrow's mission - should you choose to accept it - evaluate his eyebrows and nails. :-)

  7. I am not sure that I'll see him in the next few years to be honest! It was maybe 6 years since the last time I saw him, and may be 5 till the next time. We parted on the 'We must do this more often', but I think that you can look at the post from a couple of days ago to see the chances of that actually happening :)

    But if memory serves me right... Scruffy just about describes both his eyebrows and nails :)


  8. I have had the misfortune to have heard a number of discussions around others transitioning over the years. It's both uncomfortable and upsetting as there always seems to one person who takes the opportunity to ridcule with his (as its always a he) playground humour.

  9. I've had those conversations a couple of times and no, I can't say it's that much fun. It's the first time that I have had the conversation with Mrs Stace sitting next to me though.

    Oddly enough though it was the girls this time (OK there was only one guy there).