There I was, waiting to board my flight in one of the worst designed airports in the country, feeling the elevated effects of a piece of THC infused chocolate setting in. There was a young lady, not at all attractive, with wide shoulders and more than enough make up to survive a week or two. She was clearly lost, and I fully understand why that’s easy in Dulles. However, something else was a bit different about her that I couldn’t really explain in real time. She walked off, I went back to people watching. 5 minutes later I saw her again, still lost, still mouthing “C-5” to herself, I was seated at D-5, so I knew she was far from where she wanted to be. She walked back and forth for a while. Interestingly enough, she walked past several gate people and never asked a question. This stood out because most women have no issue with asking for some directions from strangers, it’s the people they know and love that usually get ignored.
On her last visit to the wrong gate, I figured it out with the help of my eyes and ears. She finally broke down and asked for directions from a gentleman near me, the voice was surprisingly masculine and there was a noticeable imprint in the neck area indicating an Adam’s apple. Alas, I was able to determine that this young lady was either trans or pulling a damn good prank. Unfortunately, she was still searching for her gate when I was in line to board, but the last time I saw her she was walking with purpose in the opposite direction of the one the gentleman pointed her to before. Again, I believe Dulles is a terribly designed airport and I hate it, although I’ve never been lost in there.
Granted, I don’t care what anyone does in their free time, these were just observations from a bored traveler. Seeing this made me think of the whole Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, topic that I was already writing about. It kind of dawned on me in that moment so when I took to my seat, I wrote the post you are currently reading on my phone. Though it may seem like I’m making light of the circumstance, I’m not. It is just a parallel that I will explain. I thought if Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus, then Trans people are from Pluto. Given this planet equivalency pattern, this was the best planetary choice I could think of. I know, I know…cancel culture is real and the ideas that follow would likely upset some, but there is no malice at all behind the long-winded analogy I’m going to give.
When I was a kid, I recall the mnemonic way of recalling the order of the planets…So My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas. For those that may need a reminder, that is Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, Uranus and last but not least, Pluto. Pluto was always on the fringes though, literally, and figuratively. At the time, it was the furthest planet from the Sun, and seeing as it was also the smallest, folks weren’t quite sold on it being a planet. Considering Pluto is smaller than many of the Moons in the solar system, its status as a planet was on shaky ground. Then, in August of 2006 the International Astronomical Union downgraded Pluto to a dwarf planet. Why? Likely because they had nothing better to do with their time, maybe to avoid having to reclassify several moons as planets, or because they just felt like it. Who knows, but just like that, Pluto was classified as something different.
I just saw that the Cambridge dictionary updated its definition of “Woman” to include anyone that identifies as a woman, not just someone born with the genetic makeup of a woman. I have less time on my hands than these folks, but their move immediately changed the status of Trans-women, to Women based on whoever was in the room for the vote that day, at least on paper. The thing is, much like the Pluto redesignation, it doesn’t truly change anything that matters. Dating sites will still likely have a category for Trans people. Run of the mill people will still likely be able to look and determine that a trans-woman or man is trans. The biology and overall makeup of them is still going to be male or female (biologically speaking). Much like Pluto, the Trans community is being defined by outsiders with no real skin in the game. Or, and this is highly unlikely, a bunch of the Trans people at Cambridge decided to update the definition to fit their own agenda.
What’s in a Label
I mentioned in a previous post that I don’t understand the Trans community, and speaking with friends after that post dropped, I’m not alone in this, but few are willing to say it out loud. It’s not for a lack of caring or attempts to learn more, it’s just very difficult to do that first hand if no one you know falls into this community. When Voyager 2 went past Pluto and snapped the picture that you see above, I thought “Pluto is a really pretty planet, who would have known”. I think the sentiment was the same for many people seeing as it has been an idea without a true image for so long. That’s part of the set back to being so far away, as a planet and human…it becomes difficult to discover things about the distant person/planet. In this case, both the Trans community and Pluto have been defined by someone else’s definition of what they are. My personal opinion, they’re just them. Emotionally unique, though physically and genetically the same as any other man or woman.
When the discussion about defining Trans people comes up, there’s always a sports reference. Boxing, basketball, MMA or whatever. Spaces where there is a clear advantage for a Trans woman competing against women. There is never a concern about Trans men competing with men though. Not sure why, the physical concerns should be the same. However, most Trans people aren’t trying to compete in professional sports, they’re trying to go on living regular lives as the gender they identify with. Sure, it’s problematic because heterosexual men and women may have different plans that a Trans person clearly can’t assist with. So instead of being able to just exist, they always have to make sure whomever is dealing with them, doesn’t have an issue with them. Granted, I’m not an expert on this at all, it just seems like a waste of energy to hate on them for how they feel. That said, I also don’t believe how you feel automatically makes you that, hence the need for a separate term.
Granted, you could fill buildings with the information that I don’t know…same can be said for all of us actually. The Trans community, regardless of outside definition, hate or even wide range acceptance, still sits in the fringes because similar to Pluto in size, the community is small, and like Pluto’s distance, there is a huge gap which makes gaining understanding beyond the surface difficult. No matter what one feels about the trans community, the only definition that truly matters is human. They are people living with a set of circumstances that I find hard to grasp honestly. If women are from temperamental Venus, Men are from dull ass Mars then it makes sense, at least to my mind, that Trans people are from misunderstood Pluto.