I've been troubled lately by some writings by butch authors. Things like:
I'm paraphrasing, but not by much. These kind of sentiments strike me as sexist/misogynistic. I mean... we all have the right to preferences--I don't dispute that. But imagine that a heterosexual cis man wrote the things above. ("Women are so emotional. I'm not. It's a guy thing." Or insisting that only he gets to BBQ or fix things.) Sure, he has the right to prefer those things, and they would probably lead me to suspect that he was a sexist, and someone I wouldn't like very much.
Why should these kinds of sentiments be different when a butch expresses them about a relationship she wants with a femme? Is it inherently different simply because they're both female? I'd argue that it's not.
When mentioned this to my DGF (dear girlfriend), she laughed. "Don't you know that's how most people think of butches?" she asked. "When people think butch, they think of people who want to play a traditionally 'male' role in a relationship." She went on to explain that this is part of the reason she doesn't identify as butch herself, even though (trust me) she totally is.
This all gave me pause. Sure, my DGF is more than a decade older than me, so maybe her sense of people's perceptions of "butch" are different for that reason. Or maybe there's just something I'm failing to comprehend about butch-femme relationships, since I don't prefer to be in them myself.
What do you all think? Do the kinds of comments I bulleted above strike you as sexist or misogynistic? Are they the kinds of things you assume a person thinks when she tells you she identifies as butch?
Hey all! So I've been in bed with mono for two weeks. I'm definitely starting to feel better, but DANG mono can last a long time. Being sick has gotten downright mono-tonous. Har, har. I've eaten boatloads of saltines, grown tired of red Gatorade (the original kind--this G2/G3 business is cray cray), and played dozens (hundreds?) of rounds of Gems with Friends.
Meanwhile, the out-of-doors has become downright fall-ish in my neck of the woods. Though I've yet to consume my two favorite autumn foods, candy corn and pumpkin pie, I'm in a November mood. Some people are posting one thing for which they're grateful every day this month (thanks for the tipoff, Bee Listy). But I thought I'd shoot my proverbial gratefulness wad all at once (yes, I really did just write that sentence) and list 30 things here and now. Boom.
What's on your gratefulness list, dear readers? Comment below and list at least three things, large or small. As many as you want.
In response to my last post, a reader named Tessa asked:
[W]hat are good ways to dress down a tie? I really enjoy wearing ties, especially at gay bars, where a woman in a tie isn't necessarily out of place. But I don't want to look like I'm trying to be formal when I'm just out dancing with my friends.
Great question! I can certainly sympathize: I'm rarely in formal settings, yet leap at any semi-plausible opportunity to don neckwear. Two key things to remember: (1) inject some whimsy and/or color and/or self-awareness; (2) keep the pants casual. Let's check out a few approaches.
1. Throw on a colorful or super-casual jacket or sweater. Check out the picture at left. A white shirt and black tie alone would be way too formal. The sweater with a T-shirt, too casual. Combine 'em both, and the look is bold, fun, and colorful. The two looks below illustrate the same idea. A denim jacket (left), varsity-jacket (right; must be worn ironically), or even a black leather jacket are great ways to say, "Yeah, I'm wearing a tie. And I'm having a freakin' blast doing it."
2. Pull a hat trick. A casual hat, like the driver's cap this model is wearing (right), is dapper and does a nice job dressing down the tie. The pants aren't super casual, but see how they're dressed down with a pair of Vans and a casual watch? That ensures that you know she's going for a look, not just randomly throwing on the first hat she found in her closet. (That watch is good for dressing down. I got one on Amazon last year and it's held up great. A steal for $14.96. This calculator watch for $14.99 would do the trick, too.)
By the way, it helps to know thyself. Be aware of your own look. If you have a mohawk, or wear ear gauges/tunnels/plugs, or sport a bunch of visible tattoos, your look will likely be easier to dress down, since you already look less formal. On the other hand, if you're like me and have none of the above, you're going to have to add one or two additional accouterments to dress down a tie to the same degree.
6. Cultivate the "self-aware nerd" look. This is a close enough cousin of the un-self-aware nerd look that it can be a little risky, but it's definitely worth a shot. Note the throwback glasses and rolled up sleeves? The two butches below are totally stealing my fashion moves.
7. Mix prints. Click on the pic at right if you can't see it well on your screen. (This guy is apparently a famous actor, but I'm not always clued in on the culture loop--e.g., my recent introduction to the concept of "jeggings.") He has on a red gingham print under a vest with a much larger pattern in beiges and browns. His skin tone and musculature no doubt help, but the match works because he's mixed a small print with a large one (so the two don't compete), plus there's no color clash happening. He's mixed prints, but only one color is poised to "pop." If his vest was a green plaid, I'm not sure anyone could pull it off (well, except maybe Rachel Maddow).
Have a blast dressing down your ties, #teambutch! And send in your pics--I want to see you rocking these looks.
I love autumn for many reasons, but the top three are:
1. Pretty leaves.
2. Pumpkin pie.
3. It's tie season again!
As a few of you have mentioned to me, I've been pretty lousy about keeping the Butch Store up to date, but I hereby resolve to do better. Not only do I make a whopping $9-$15 every month (because 5-6% of the proceeds go to support this site when you shop there), but making sure butches look good is a service to our great community.
With that in mind, I'm reviving the Butch Store, and promise to have more terrific, up-to-date recommendations for clothing and more, starting with ties.
(BTW, I've devoted previous posts to ties: why I love wearing ties but sometimes hesitate to, dos and don'ts of tie-buying, and an ode to wool ties, for starters. You can see all my tie-related posts here.)
If men's fashion week, GQ, Esquire, and common sense are right, ties will be as popular as ever this late fall and winter. Less emphasis on looking like Don Draper, more emphasis on tailoring, wool, plaids, blues, and dark greys. So check out the Butch Store to get started, and tell me what else I should add.
Have you rocked a tie yet this fall, dear readers? What questions/concerns do you have about wearing ties? Sometime this month I'm going to post a list of tie-wearing tips, so I'd love to hear your questions!
Hi BW readers! It's been almost a week since you heard from me. I've been uncharacteristically tired and had a weird constellation of other symptoms, so I went to the doctor, and... I have mono! Mononucleosis! For the third time. I am writing this with a pillow wedged beneath my upper left side to ease the constant pain of my swollen spleen. Awesome!
Anyway, I miss you. Not all my readers--I love them all, but I miss YOU specifically. So I wanted to say hi. And what better way to say hi than sharing a list of the weirdest search terms that brought people to Butch Wonders in October? Here you go:
Your swollen-spleened Butterfinger-loving demon fox,