I’ve been fascinated by the news that L.A. Times sportswriter Mike Penner has announced his plans to become the woman he was always meant to be. She will be called Christine Daniels, and she will continue to write the column after a brief hiatus.
Mr. Penner told his story in a graceful column addressed to his readers, who must have been astonished. He explained that ‘tests’ have confirmed he is ‘wired’ as a woman. I searched for a photo of Penner, just curious to see what he looks like , but I couldn’t find one. As we know, he could be a burly 6’7″ and still be a woman trapped in a man’s body.
Personally, I am trapped in a body, but I’m not sure how to express my situation. I used to feel like a brain trapped in an extraneous body that was just a source of annoyance or misery. The body was lousy at sports and kind of awkward in general. On occasion, I still hit myself in the face with my handbag when I try to throw it in the back seat. In my teens, the body seemed too fleshy, so I got anorexia and starved it. It still took up too much space, in my unbalanced thinking, but eventually I snapped out of it.
Now that I’m, ahem, over forty, my body is a model of entropy. It is crapping out at an alarming rate. This week it’s my lower back, last week my fucking bladder. The migraines are much better but the hot flashes are no bargain, and my chiseled abs are a faint memory, like the name of that Kurt Vonnegut book I was trying to recommend to my kid the other day.
Suddenly, I’ve come upon a new theory of my entrapment. Maybe I’m a gay man trapped in a woman’s body! It makes a lot of sense. I love the company of gay men, who are witty, playful, bitchy, culturally literate and obsessed with fashion. I hear that some gay men don’t have these qualities, but that’s their problem. Anyway, my husband once told me that I had a gay sense of humor, and this was supposed to be an insult. On top of that, I love the Wizard of Oz , Prince, Six Feet Under, Paul Smith, biker boots, David Beckham, leather, and kitsch art.
I might really be on to something here. I do like to wear sexy lingerie, but that doesn’t contradict my theory, right? The only stumbling block is that according to tests I’ve taken, my brain is wired as female in the extreme. Very high in empathy, very low in systemizing. I’ve called this syndrome “Girlie Brain.”
Girlie Brain sounds kind of gay though! Oh well. Stand by for more research.