Tonight's TV was quite enthralling (for a change).
I caught a bit of University Challenge just before settling down to Masterchef, and I was thrilled to see a trans woman (Olivia Woolley) captaining a winning team (University College, London). They won 220 points to 145.
What a great way to fly the flag for transgendered people everywhere. No Timmy the Tranny here, Ms Moir!
However, I knew what the general reaction might be, and sure enough when I Googled 'university challenge woolley' afterwards I found two forums (better say fora) - Digitalspy and The Student Room - that came up (or should it be down?) to expectations. The first contained a few ill-informed remarks, but a contributor managed to educate them effectively. However The Student Room forum attracted a large number of 'laughed my head off' comments from silly young men (not the women, mark you) that the best efforts of the moderators did not quell. Tossers.
Masterchef has become compelling viewing for me, and we're down to the three finalists. Who am I rooting for? All are nice people, but Marianne gets my vote. She is consistently the cook with the best flavours and needs only to make her presentation sparkle.
Then I switched over to Age Eight and wanting a Sex Change. It highlighted some important issues for transgendered kids to think about, but I thought the programme makers had sympathy with the kids and weren't presenting a pre-digested judgement for tut-tutting viewers. I was touched when one of the kids, Kyla, comforted her sobbing mother. (I wish I could have done that with my own mum) I must say, the parents were so supportive and accepting. As one said, despite the transition, they still had a child, loving and alive, and not one made an outcast, or driven to suicide because forbidden treatment.
Sigh. I wish things had been like this in the 1960s. No such concept as 'gender dysphoria' then, no way even of articulating what the trouble was. No internet, no NHS leaflets, no diagnosis, no treatment, just a few salacious or flippant films, and leering tabloid articles. And people like Danny la Rue to muddy the waters.
But I had reason for satisfaction today. I went to the big Marks and Spencer store at Shoreham and got called 'Madam' three times, including an embarrassing moment when I touched a rack of clothing and it fell to the floor. And I tried on two coats, two miniskirts and some slim-leg jeans in the ladies' changing room with no difficulty whatever. Granted, I was in my warpaint, wearing leggings, black mini and a green top with a bow, and was booted. But I had to speak, and I said much, but even so nobody cried 'There's Timmy!' QED, I think.
Off to Suffolk tomorrow for six days. So there'll probably be nothing on the blog for a little while.