Friday, August 21, 2009

Gender-Fluid in a Gender-Solid World

This blog is turning out to be as much about gender as it is about asexuality. Not what I was planning, entirely, but hey, who am I to complain? An idea is an idea.

This week is orientation week at my University and I signed up to be an orientation leader because I'm crazy and masochistic. (Our dorms have no air conditioning, so I'm melting this week.) I'm having fun anyway.

One thing we did, during Orientation Leader training, was play a huge 120 person game of "trainwreck". This consists of sitting in a huge circle with one person standing in the middle. That person says their name and a fact about themselves and then anyone for whom that fact is true stands up and runs to find a new seat. The catch being, of course, that there is one more person than there are chairs and someone is left standing to begin the next round.

One of the facts someone used was "I am a girl" and later, "I am a guy". Of course, I stood up for "I am a girl", but because it's me and I think about my gender so frequently, I wondered- how would I have felt standing up for "I am a girl" if I felt more like a boy that day? Sometimes I do. It depends on a lot of different factors, none of which I'm going to detail here because I already did so in a very long series of earlier posts. As I'm sure we're all aware, it would have been all kinds of not fun if I had stood up for "I am a guy". People would have been very confused, probably would have corrected me and I would have been embarassed.
My gender identity has to do with my everyday life, but not really very much. I'm content with people reading me as female and treating me accordingly. It's just that sometimes I don't feel like a female. Honestly is not a requirement for playing "trainwreck", but what if my gender identity had really mattered to me, enough that I stood up and, in running around like a chicken with it's head cut off, implied that I'm not a girl?

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