Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Diane von Furstenberg Renna Wool & Silk Dress

I love this dress.

If you look at the bottom of the picture, you'll see a little "play video" indicator.  The dress is so pretty. I love the way it looks and moves in the little video.  The model in the video has great classic pumps and a perfect little clutch.  It's a great look.

The page shows the usual kinds of information about the dress.

There's also a section called Size & Fit.  That section says
Model shown is 5'10" (177cm) wearing US size 4.

So, I guess that's good to know, but a part of me wonders how many women are 5'10" and wear size 4.  In the back of my mind, I also wondered if including the model's size info is a subtle way of saying "it's a gorgeous dress but, nyah, nyah, it will never look that good on you."

Friday, August 16, 2013

Bradley Manning

Bradley Manning is a member of the US Army.  He was recently convicted of several violations of the Espionage Act for passing classified information to WikiLeaks.

Testimony during his sentencing hearing revealed that Manning is transgender.. 

From an article on The Atlantic Wire website

In an April 24, 2010 email to his supervisor at the time, Master Sgt. Paul Adkins, Manning confessed he was transgender, and that he joined the Army, basically, to "get rid of it."  The subject line was "My Problem." The email said,
This is my problem. I’ve had signs of it for a very long time. It’s caused problems within my family. I thought a career in the military would get rid of it. It’s not something I seek out for attention, and I’ve been trying very, very hard to get rid of it by placing myself in situations where it would be impossible. But, it’s not going away; it’s haunting me more and more as I get older. Now, the consequences of it are dire, at a time when it’s causing me great pain it itself…
I don't know what to do anymore, and the only "help" that seems available is severe punishment and/or getting rid of me.

I thought the author of the article did a good job of summarizing the recent revelations about Manning. Whatever I might think about Manning's actions, I sympathize with the statements in his e-mail.  He wouldn't be the first person who tried to "fix" his gender identity issues by going into the military.

I'm interested to see what public reaction will be.  Most coverage I've seen so far has been pretty low-key (although I have seen headlines like "Bradley Manning: Blond bombshell? Army releases photo of him as cross-dresser").

I am concerned that casual observers may conclude from Manning's story that all those who find themselves outside  "normal" gender boundaries are inherently unstable,   I hope that's not the case.