Pride weekend of 2005 was HOT. I spent all day Saturday marching and working at the festival and came home to JP drenched in sweat. The only way I could possibly survive a night at the notoriously overheated Midway was to dress as coolly as possible. For me, that means a dress.
I had a great time that night, but as the bar filled up, I kept looking around me only to see that I was still the only person in a dress. There were femmes and feminine people there, sure, and there was at least one jean skirt. But I was wearing an orange paisley slip dress and carrying a white beaded purse and I felt pretty conspicuous, which is never fun for an introvert like me. An old friend from college was there and she kept making fun of the purse. "What is this? You can't even dance with it! Why do you need a purse?" I rolled my eyes and tried to explain that it is a very practical way to carry my cash and cell phone because most of my clothes don't have pockets.
Two years later, I can go out in Boston in sequined, head-to-toe pink and know that there will be other out, proud femmes who are just as flamboyant. There has been a femme renaissance, in no small part thanks to MadFemmePride, an awesome grass roots MeetUp group for femmes and queers of all types. But there are still a lot of misconceptions out there. Many of us still get read as straight. Many queer-identified people think we're selling out or upholding the gender binary, when we're only expressing what for many of us is an authentic, essential part of our selves, our gender identity. Some people assume that femmes have just come out and that we'll become more like "real lesbians" eventually. Femininity is so devalued in our society that some people can't imagine that some of us like being feminine and embrace it.
The Femme Show is my new contribution to Boston's growing femme-friendly community. It's a 100% independent, interactive evening of entertainment about femme identity. There is no production company, no committee, just me, my friends, and some awesome artists in a church basement. Artists in the femme show are exploring gender, social policing of gender and bodies, sex, clothing, body image, misogyny and heterosexism. Come, you might learn something and you will definitely be entertained.
The Femme Show offers smart, sexy, interactive performance about queer femme identity taking place in Jamaica Plain October 12 and 13, 2007. Some of the area's hottest, most provocative artists have banded together to bring you an evening of film, dance, literary readings, burlesque, drag, and performance art that is sure to delight. In addition to an evening of rocking performances, the Femme Show offers an art show, femme-tastic vendors, and a bake sale to benefit the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition.
October 12 and 13, 2007
8:00 PM Capen Auditorium,
Central Congregational Church, JP
85 Seaverns Ave, 1 block from the Green Street T Stop
$11 in advance, $12 at the door