Game of Roles

Standing in front of me is “Jason” a customer of mine. His arms are lined with tattoos of naked women, dragons, and some indistinguishable filler.

He loves to talk crap about different races, women, and political figures when he thinks no one else is listening. He seldom includes me in these eloquent conversations. I would assume he has figured out I am not racist or bigoted which rules me out of most topics. Our exchanges are very to the point and matter of fact. I always stay cordial as this is the way I was raised to behave no matter my opinions on your person.

“Hey J, Who the F*@# is John Simmons.” as he peers down at the invoice in front of him. Working in a setting involving a lot of contractors can create an environment that is crass to say the least. My day job is working wholesale and a majority of my customers are your average Joe repair men and plumbers. My attire for work usually consists of eyeliner and light makeup, a work shirt (polo shirt), jeans of my choosing, my hair in a high ponytail, and manicured neutral polish nails. While I am not walking the runway it is obvious that I don’t fit in with the masses at work.

“IT IS THEN I FULLY REALIZE HOW VASTLY OVERDUE AND OUTDATED MY LEGAL INFORMATION IS.”

I cringe at the thought of having to answer him because I feel as if I am giving him ammunition for his next rant. “That is me… My legal name.”He ponders for a moment and looks up at me then down at the paper again then at me once more. He shrugs his shoulders and says “Interesting” then walks away. It is then I fully realize how vastly overdue and outdated my legal information is. The only time it crosses my mind is when I get carded at a bar or in an instance like this. No one in my life calls me that anymore so to be honest it was too much of a chore living in Georgia but now I live in New Hampshire and there is nothing standing in my way.

The next week I told work I would be late and went to the courthouse to file my name change documents. I got a couple of “Misses” and “Maam’s” walking through security. This is always a nice boost first thing in the morning. I made my way to the probate clerk’s office where I needed to file. I walk in and no one is around except “Peggy”. “Peggy” seemed sweet enough when she said “Ma’am how can I help you?”

“I need to file for a name change. Here are my forms.” as I slid the forms under the glass barrier. “Hmm. I see… Ok just sign right here, Sir… Ma’am…”

“I PERSONALLY FEEL AS IF I WILL ALWAYS BE TRANSGENDER NO MATTER HOW FAR REMOVED FROM MY PAST I MAY GET.”

Once again there it was, my instant regendering in “Peggy’s” head just as with Jason days before. The tightrope of two lives and the lack of understanding by the general public. I hear about a lot of transgender people that feel as if they are done being transgender after a point. They feel that they no longer need to be classified as transgender. I personally feel as if I will always be transgender no matter how far removed from my past I may get. I don’t mind people knowing that I am. I am proud of it but in the same breath it is very tiresome constantly having to justify myself. I will never understand how I can stand in front of someone with breast, mom jeans, a mom bag, my hair down to my shoulders and still get labeled as male. To me it is pretty obvious that I do not wish to be viewed as a “sir”.

Jennifer Simmons
On a side note from this week’s article I would like to express my grief and sadness over the attack in Orlando and also the attempted attack in LA. Orlando impacted me just as much as Sandy Hook did or 9/11. People say that send thoughts and prayers are an empty sign of caring but sometimes thoughts and prayers are something very precious to an individual. Orlando will change my views on life and our country as much as other attacks have. Those who live by the ways of evil will always target the most innocent and loving groups because they are cowards at the end of it all. My heart aches for the loss of such beautiful people in our world.

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