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A Ferret Called Wilson

Chasing Happy, Chasing Dreams

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Ride Like a Girl

Perhaps it was the Always* commercial, or some other commercial, that inspired me to redefine what it means to ride like a girl. I’ve been searching for people to ride with who can help me grow as a cyclist. I want to challenge the professionals one day and I know I can’t do it alone. In a forum on a new group I’m checking out, one of the members made a comment that some guy was slow and “rides like a girl.” To the group’s credit, another member quickly corrected him, but the seed had already been planted. To ride like a girl is an insult? Nonono. Let me explain to you what riding like a girl really means. To ride like a girl is to love the sport of cycling like no man has ever loved. We are so few and they are so many that to even dream of riding a bicycle is like walking into the lion’s den. They would eat us alive and shit us out again without even a second thought if we gave them a chance. And we give them a chance every time we get on the road. “Can we ride with you?” “Sure, but this is a no-wait ride.” BITE “What pace are you planning to hold?” “Today’s an easy day, so something like 16-17 mph.” CHEW “I want to race, but there’s no women’s class. What should I do?” “Just jump in with everyone else. That’s how we learned. Trial by fire.” SWALLOW “Everyone is so much faster than I am. It’s very scary, is there no other option that’s more my level?” “Look, if you don’t have the balls, don’t ride. We are not the babysitters club.” SHIT And there we are, shredded, watching as the men ride off into the distance. And what do we do? We climb back into the saddle. We push on the pedals. We ride. We ride for the love of the bicycle. We ride for the need for speed. We ride for the joy of feeling our bodies propel the bike through the air, over the road, down the trail. We ride because we are made to ride. Some women will quit. After the kind of welcome we receive into the sport of cycling, who can blame them? But those of us who continue to ride, we are furious. We survive the burn, burn after burn after burn, because we are propeled by an inner fire a thousand times hotter than anything outside. With smaller legs, less muscle mass, and smaller lungs, we climb the same hills. Our hearts beat the same rhythm. We put in the same time. And each hour of work produces less speed and less progress than any a man’s body would put out. The hills feel bigger, the miles feel longer. And yet we ride. We push past the barriers of our own bodies, the barriers of an industry who considers us as nothing more than marginal revenue sources, the coldness of a culture that simply doesn’t believe that we should be allowed to play, too. And we excel. We fly. We get dropped, and we ride alone. We crash, and we pick ourselves up. No sponsor? No problem. We’re used to taking care of ourselves. All this we do with the energy that comes from a deep seated love for riding. Only a girl could endure all of this and still ride on. So do it. Go on. Ride like a girl. I’ll ride with you.


* Originally I thought Dove was responsible, but it was Always with their campaign #likeAgirl. They’re at it again and you should definitely go check them out.

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Team Practice?

I’ve been very angry lately. I’m frustrated and there are people who I would sell my soul for (not really) who could help me and they don’t. So my frustration has morphed into anger.

Today I was very, very angry. I rode angry miles at 6am this morning to meet some boys who don’t really care if I ride with them or not, but prefer to say they care while secretly hoping I never actually do ride with them because girls are a nuisance when you’re busy comparing the size of your penis.

I knew that my entire plan was a hopeless endeavor from the start, so I laid in bed for 48minutes waivering on whether or not I was actually going to go through with it.

The anger won out. I could not go back to sleep no matter how hard I tried. In a record time of 7 minutes I was out of bed, into my cycling spandex, and out the door to meet the boys. I was late. It didn’t really matter because I didn’t actually know where to meet them. I just knew it was somewhere on the river and that I had been there before. I was just hoping that I would spot their jerseys and figure it out. I did. They all saw me, but no one recognized me. So I just spun around and tagged on to the back of the peloton. They were confused. Who the fuck is this? Do we ignore her? Him? Do we let him (her?) follow along? I was too angry to say good morning to any of them. I just rode. I knew I wouldn’t make it far before they dropped me so in all honesty I felt greatings were a waste of my precious oxygen and passed on them.

Eventually someone recognized me. It didn’t change anything.

I lasted about 17minutes before they dropped me for real. It was all I could do to hang on to the back of their pack between stop lights, but on the second hill my legs were already done. I lost the draft and never recovered. As best I could I kept an eye on them up the road from me. I figured I would follow them as far as I could, but I lost them when they turned left and disappeared before I could get to the intersection.

I stood there for a while not sure what to do. Eventually I decided to plot my own course and see if maybe I didn’t get too lost. Maybe I would be lucky and catch them on the return trip. Technically they posted their route on the facebook group, but I can’t use Microsoft Silverlight on my smartphone so I couldn’t open the link. So I made it up.

At the peak of some mountain in Kanagawa prefecture that wasn’t the one I was supposed to climb but I made like a dozen wrong turns so who the fuck knows where I was supposed to be anyway, I stopped at a Lawson for some fuel. And then I sat down on the curb and cried.

I cried for my sorry hopeless situation. I am a female. My heart is no more female than it is male, but my body is a female. And I have no playmates. I exist in this void where the women are afraid to play with me, but I’m not strong enough to play with the men. I am alone. Utterly and completely peerless.

I cried for my pathetic inability to make friends.

I cried for my loneliness.

I cried for my wasted years. I am well into my thirties now and I have always wanted to be a professional athlete but never has anyone ever believed I could do it. Now I feel like I am too late, but at the same time I’m also too old to give a shit. Pathetic.

I cried because no one takes me seriously. No one believes I can do it. No one believes I want to do it. No one understands that my soul needs to ride, and to ride hard. No one appreciates how I am suffocating from lack of expression of this fiery need to fucking fly.

When I was done crying, my body chilled from the altitude and the quickly intensifying wind, I climbed back onto my baby Pikuro and wobbled back out into the road.

I didn’t make it to the peak the boys had ridden to. I was 18km off course and exhausted. I rode home.

It was a hell of a ride. 80+km and 1300m of climbing. I did it in under 6 hours including stopping for lunch and various episodes of losing my way. The boys were only scheduled for 75km. I think that’s not too shabby.

No, I think that’s amazing.

I’m amazing. I’m fucking strong, fucking sexy, fucking stubborn…

and fucking lonely. Because for some reason none of that is enough for anyone to want to play with me.

Fuck.

Sad, Sad

I’d like to start by saying that I am embarassed to be writing this post. However, in the name of honesty and self awareness, I’m going to do it anyway.

I am still very, very sad over the events that went down with my shop. It has infected every aspect of my riding and because of my inability to clear the air, it has grown and metastisized like an aggressive cancer. I’m afraid if I don’t get this thorn out of me soon that it will swallow me and make repair impossible.

It’s not just that the manager dropped me like baggage in the middle of unfamiliar territory with no support, directions or even a heads up. I’m mourning the loss of a dream that I didn’t know I was carrying until it was awoken by these people, and then crushed again so quickly after.

My dream, of course, is to become a strong, powerful top female athlete. I have always wanted to excel with my body, but I have always been told to give up the idea. With no support or role models, I grew into a very strange young woman who was so used to making decisions in the black hole of social isolation that she had lost the ability to comprehend common sense. Goals, training methods, life choices, all became a jumble of nothing in particular all because I never had any feedback that I could trust to guide me. That changed when I was invited to join the cycling team. I thought to myself, I am finally strong enough to be able to play with others! I am finally good enough to be allowed to have guidance. Finally, finally, it’s ok for me to dream of the heights of my physical potential!

With the idea of devoting every cell of my body to this one goal, this goal that no one could ever take away from me, this goal that was so beautiful and so pure that I could use it as a foundation to organize the rest of my life around, I became ecstatic. Suddenly I had a purpose that was wholly mine, that fulfilled me and gave me joy.

And then just as suddenly as this dream was uncovered for me, it was crushed with the realization that, no, even my own personal best, even the height of all my potential actualized, my sweat, tears and pain, are just not good enough for me to be able to have friends. Because friends don’t dump you like excess baggage when they want to play. Because friends don’t ignore you when you beg them for help. Because friends don’t tell you that you can’t play with them because you’re a girl and they don’t have time for that shit.

And that’s what it comes down to, really. I had a dream that I had finally found friends to play with. And then I woke up to the blaring reality that no, no I really don’t.


日本語 Continue reading “Sad, Sad”

Lonely Ride of Betrayal

I would like to start by saying that I love Pikuro with my whole heart. She has never betrayed me, always been strong, never complained, and always volunteered for a challenge. I love this bike.

The boys, on the other hand, were much less praiseworthy.

I had gone into the shop after work on Monday to see if there would be practice for the Sado ride we are doing in just over two week’s time (a 210 km loop around Sado island). So far we have done a single ride of half the total distance in practice and I’m really nervous. I give up and go home without an answer only to get called just as I’m going to bed and told to be back at the shop at 6am the next day. It’s an hour and a half from my house. We were going to ride from Enzan station to the top of the highest paved road in Japan. I was thrilled at the idea, but tired and worn out. I agreed on faith, hoping that since the pansy girly-girls at the shop were doing the Sado ride that I would be able to do the practice ride, too.image

Barely fifteen minutes into the ride they disappear around a corner without a word. Luckily the road was pretty obvious, because they didn’t bother to give me directions. While I knew I would be dropped eventually, I told myself that they would come back soon to check on me and make sure I wasn’t lost or overwhelmed or something. I said to myself, of course they’ll come back! They’re so much stronger than I am that the extra miles will barely be a workout.

An hour goes by, then two. I look down at my GPS and I’ve climbed nearly a thousand meters in under fifteen kilometers’ distance. A map by the side of the road marks the peak at 2300 meters. I could only carry one water bottle and it was already dangerously light. There were no shops, no vending machines, not even any intersections in sight, just this long, steep, winding road disappearing off into the clouds.

Parched and exhausted I reach the Kotagawa Dam, and the first intersection in nearly twenty kilometers of riding. All the public toilets are bolted shut. There is no water. I am only halfway to the top. I sat down in the grass by the side of the road and tried to hold it together. I had no idea where I was and no idea where they were. Do I turn back? Do I push on? The gentlest grade on the entire ascent was 4% and the mountain road was tight, often only a single lane, and dirty with the dried leaves and seeds of a winter without traffic. With no cell reception and no backup, a flat tire or a slip on the way down could be disastrous, but my legs were already quivering with exhaustion.
imageAfter a nap in what turned out to be a grassy field of deer poop I decided I would ride the two kilometer scenic route to a flower bed around the corner. It would wake my legs up a bit and get me back in the zone to handle the very spookey descent ahead of me. Five kilomters and another 300 m of climbing and there were no flowers. Fuck it, I’m done. I’m fed up and pissed off and I’m going home. I did my best to ride clean and smooth on the descent, but the road was so dangerous that it was hard to really enjoy myself as I kept expecting a car to appear right in front of me around every turn. As much as I could see, I focused on my newfound technique: brake, eye the inside of the turn, keep your focus inside until either you start to creep toward the outer edge or the turn opens up, then look at your exit and set up for the next curve. I did well, though my knuckles were locking up and my shoulders were on fire by the time I got down.

Not knowing what to do, I headed for the train station and hoped for a place to get water. The boys showed up twenty minutes later, but after all that I had been through I was livid, fucking furious! I could not even speak to them for fear I would fly into a rage. It had been over four hours since I had any contact with any of them and they didn’t even bother to tell me what route they were planning to ride.

In the end, I still enjoyed the physicality of the day. I love my bike. I love feeling my muscles clench and churn, and the response of the bike surging forward with every pedal stroke. I love knowing that it is the power of my own body that drives the momentum underneath me. At the same time, I wanted desperately to have a group to ride with — to ride with friends.

A girl on a bike is a lonely, lonely creature. There is no culture for female cyclists, no products that suit our bodies, no events appropriate for our skills. I searched in the States, and I’ve been searching in Japan. At first I said to myself, you just need to get a little stronger. You’ll be amazing as a woman, but you’ll still only be able to ride with the beginner and weaker guys, but it will be a ride with a group in any case so set this as your goal. I did that. I got stronger. I got faster. I took on challenges that most other women would cringe at and what did it get me? It got me dropped without a word in the mountains in the middle of nowhere with no water, no support, not even a goddamn map.
image

I don’t curse my bike, the road or even the sport. I curse the privilege of the Y-chromosome, the infrastructure, and the dehumanization of women. I curse the blithe and cavalier attitude of the boys who say to me, “look, we didn’t treat you any differently than anyone else. If these other guys couldn’t keep up, we would have dropped them, too.” And they have the audacity to complain that women don’t want to ride with them! Dear boys, this is the world that you create. Stop being such fucking assholes about it.

In Need of Hope

I just watched this interview of Edward Snowden by John Oliver. Two comments:

1.) How is it that we have gotten so deep into this mess? It’s not that we haven’t known or cared about the dangers of government intrusion in our lives, but why is it that that hasn’t been enough to protect us? It frightens me to no end.
2.) John Oliver is a teaching genius. It’s not about whether you are correct or accurate, it’s about whether or not you get your message across. And you know what? Dick pics.

Sharing my sexuality

I moderate a forum dedicated to helping men overcome body issues and social anxiety. I hang out there because a long time ago I discovered that my best sexual partners tended to have smaller than average sized penises. Since the site’s original mission was to help men with small penis anxiety, I felt it was my duty to come to the site and sing my praises of the smaller sausages.

Naturally, my contribution to the site involves a lot of detailed descriptions of my sexual encounters, including my partners’ body types and my own reactions. I love sex and I love talking about sex, so this is actually a perfectly symbiotic relationship. However, while I am not in the least bit shy about my body, my tastes, or my escapades, I make sure to maintain a certain degree of anonymity and distance on the site. I think it is important that the men who hear of my escapades do not mistakenly interpret my openness and sexuality for sexual availability. This is a fine line that needs to be respected for the benefit of all people involved, but particularly for the men.

Throughout my life, since about twelve years old when I started attending high school, I have been hooted at, cat called, hit on and harassed. I have always been attractive and perhaps because of my background in classical ballet and theatre, I have always been shameless about displaying my body. Since a very young age, my body has been a tool of expression, so to hide it from others would be akin to cutting out my own tongue and then attempting to have a conversation. I am also objectively attractive. I know it’s not polite to point it out, but after being informed so for twenty years solid, it almost seems impolite to deny it. Perhaps as a result of my lifelong exposure to unsolicited male attention I have developed certain self protection mechanisms. I am a highly sexual female and men simply react to that. It isn’t a question of should they or should they not, but simply a reality that in order for my life to carry on more or less peacefully, I have to be the one to manage the sexual energy between myself and others.

For many women in the vast majority of encounters with unsolicited suitors, feigning disgust, sexual disinterest or ignorance is the quickest, easiest and most natural response. When a construction worker cat calls you on the way to work, there is no being polite or sophisticated, the best response is usually the finger. However, there are times when you want to share a portion of your sexuality, but still keep the male somewhat at a distance. Such is the case with me when I go out drinking with my friends or when I share a personal account on the forums. Often, it feels like playing with fire.

On the forums I try my best to present myself as “a woman sharing her experience with interested people.” Contrast this image to “Pinkie Boadicea talking about sex with me.” From the reader’s perspective, if you are an interested male, then both are equally true. The important distinction is which one feels truer or resonates more strongly. In the latter case, the reader might develop some misplaced affections towards me, Pinkie, the Woman on the Forum, when what I really want to happen is that the reader takes my message as evidence that women in general are capable of having similar opinions and that some woman somewhere will in turn have those feelings directed towards him. If the reader were to misinterpret my oppenness as interest in himself, personally, it might prevent him from seeking out more appropriate validation and affection from real people in real life. I want to avoid this as much as possible on the forums, so I try to make sure my language is general even when the subject is personal. I also make a point not to carry on discussions about myself in private messages. I don’t want the people I interact with to think that I am confiding some secret in them when the reality is that I am sharing something which is only personal, but not particularly private.

In real life things are different. I’m not as eloquent or careful. Let me point out, though, that I do not for a second consider this a fault. As I mentioned before it is one thing to say that it is a woman’s responsibility to manage male affections and it is another to say that it is a fact of life that failing to do so can become troublesome. Moreover, I can log out of a forum but I can’t log out of real life. There has to be some place where I can let it all hang out and indeed I make a point to do so. Men who can handle an unfiltered me make for much more fulfilling and uplifting friendships than men who need to be managed. All of that said, there are some habits that I have developed that will skew my relationships with men in real life and for better or for worse they seem to be fairly deeply ingrained.

While I am never shy about my sexuality and will always answer honestly when asked a direct question, I make a point to differentiate my affection from my raw lust. I try to make sure that my male friends understand that loving them does not mean fucking them any more than using their cocks to scratch an itch deep inside my cunt does not mean that I have fallen in love with them or would for a moment hesitate to scratch the same itch with a different cock. Sometimes I do this by twisting the reason why I am interested in someone so that it sounds more vulgar than it really is. Sometimes I do this by suddenly becoming very busy when a friend or partner seems to be confounding my sex drive with my love. I wish I could say that I do these things intentionally, but they seem to be more like self protection mechanisms and I often feel guilty when I catch myself doing them. If I could be fully in my wits at all moments, I would definitely prefer to tell them outright: Please don’t misunderstand, I love you and care for you the same way that I love and care for that other guy that I hang out with, but am not sleeping with; that you are my sexual partner at the moment is a matter of convenience for both of us but is no indication of my heart being open to you or of a commitment to be yours now or at any time in the future.

I have lost friends because of an inability to communicate about sex effectively with them. I have lost money and sleep because of the inability to communicate about sex with men who were not so much my friends. Enabling male sexuality is very dangerous specifically when communication about boundaries and intentions fails. However, I am a sexual being. I love sex and I believe that the free expression of sex increases human well being on a personal as well as a social level. Moreover, I know that among women I am particularly capable of communicating my boundaries in a gentle way, and I am particularly capable of kindness towards my partners. So in a way, I feel as if I am particularly responsible to take the risk and put my sexuality out in public view where it can be experienced by others for what it is. It is my hope that by touching others in a genuine fashion that they will take that experience forward in their own lives and their own relationships and that, even if no one ever consciously recognizes that it was me who inspired them, they will live fuller and more satisfying lives because of me. That is the reason why I share.

Life Changing…Porn?

Hi Cyd,

I moderate a forum dedicated to men suffering from various sexual dysfunctions, anxieties etc. called Measurection (www.measurection.com) I’m a girl, but they let me hang around ^^

Today one of our members posted a link to your site and so I had to have a look.

I don’t know if this is something I’ll ever get a chance in the world to say again, but your porn is doing wonders for the world we live in today! The trans men you you depict are truly beautiful. You show them not as oddities, but as real men fucking.

I know the men who hang out at the forum, even those who are into more traditional sex/porn, are intrigued and inspired by your site. Whether or not they know it, you showing trans men fucking and loving it gives them hope that they can be fucked and loved, too. That’s not something most porn websites can wave a flag to.

So thanks for doing what you do!

–Pink

Fuck That (Reparations)

Saw a link to this essay claiming that it was going to jumpstart a movement as grand as the gay rights movement. It claims that “America will never be whole” as long as it holds this debt to the poor black man, compounded with over 435 years of interest.

Well fuck that! The entire fucking globe has shat on my kind for centuries, nay millenia! The Ancient Jews of Before Christ were bartering my kind for livestock, punishing our rapists with our hand in marriage, throwing us to the wolves to save their hairy stank asses from getting rammed instead. And Jesus didn’t exactly fix things. Modern Christians flog us endlessly for Original Sin, accuse us of murder for trying to control our own bodies, guilt us out of life and liberty with sad images of our neglected children. We are the cause of our enemies’ moral failings and we must give up our faces and our identities in order to protect them from punishment.

The fucking President of the United States is a fucking Black Motherfucking Sausage Swinger.

But who is calling for our reparations?

On Humanism

Last week was a week for feminist bashing. First, a post by a member on a men’s support forum that I frequent blamed the liberated modern feminist for the shape of modern male body shame. More recently there have been a number of articles published commenting on Hillary Clinton’s impending rise to power and on the form of feminism presented by Ms Sandberg in this article. I used to think of myself as a feminist, but I think feminism is outdated, and a misnomer, for what the true meaning of the movement represents. Today, I think of myself as a humanist.

I thank my fellow bloggers, les femmes, for helping me to find words to express my standing, and I thank a a particularly genuine forum member at the support forum for the inspiration to remember my own humanity in the midst of the anger.

Humanism. It isn’t feminism because it doesn’t seek to place women on equal footing as men, or to insult men or put them down, and it isn’t masculinism or patriarchism because it doesn’t seek to maintain the long standing oppression of women. Humanism is the philosophy that all humans have value, that we are all made of flesh, that we all feel pain, we all cry, we all fear the unknown. Humanism seeks to undo the damage that centuries of body shaming and millennia of power seeking have put on our collective psyches. Humans wants peace for all humans in their own hearts, and in their relationships with each other.

After the claim was made that modern feminism is responsible for the shape and style of small penis humiliation, another man added an explanation: feminists seek to topple the patriarchy, but instead of going for the strongest males, they attack the weakest first and use the cheapest shots. This naturally results in women shaming non-alpha male types for their insufficient sex drives, small penises, lack of ambition and generally non-alpha male patriarchal personality types.

I understand where this man is coming from. He feels inferior to the alpha-types that define what ideal modern masculinity looks like, but it is easier to blame women, outsiders, for attacking him than it is to blame his fellow men. He would like to be an alpha, but he isn’t. However, if he rejects the image of alpha as fundamentally flawed, he incites ridicule from other alpha males — the strong and empowered males that he claims women are afraid to challenge, but whom he himself also fears. Rather than accept that he fails to meet the standards he upholds, or to take the responsibility to change the things in himself that he disapproves of, he finds an outside entity which is socially weaker than he is and attacks it instead.

Thanks to the gentle words of another member on the forum, when I read these accusations I saw them for the expression of impotence that they really were, rather than the attack on myself that they felt like. I suggested that where he wrote “feminists” he might instead write “people who seek power over others” and where he wrote “alpha males” that he might instead write “those who currently have power and social approval.” I think what this man was really trying to say is that people attack the weakest representations of their enemies when they feel threatened, and that in doing so they harm those who are in fact closest to themselves, perhaps even their allies.

To be a humanist takes a wider perspective than to be a feminist. It is not enough to topple all the males, but rather, we must select from within the whole of masculinity what bits are truly harmful to us and what bits are nothing more than the imperfect and clumsy attempts of other human beings to fight for their own happiness. After all, men still are in a position of power over us. We don’t like it and we don’t want to accept it, but we can further our own goals if we acknowledge it and make allies where we can.

I am no political strategist. In fact, I am quite simple in my understanding of humans. I see the philosophy of humanism as a torch in the night. By recognizing the humanity in all of us, even those who would appear as my ideological enemies, I can make better choices, see more clearly, and feel less threatened by the violent world that I live in.

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