Profile: Oliver

You can call me… Oliver, Olli, Ol or Warlord von Uberschminkel, but the latter probably only if you’re my partner. Otherwise I shall consider you odd.

I identify as… Male. Not “bio-female” or any nonsensical phrase like that.

As far as third-person pronouns go, … I can see why people might use them for me, as some say I appear genderqueer. But male ones are more fitting.

I’m attracted to… people who don’t expect the conventional polite conversation I can’t provide. People with nice smiles. Beautiful women, handsome men, attractive genderqueer people (those who are not gender abolitionists). Men who dress up as Uruk-hai.

When people talk about me, I want them to… be in awe of my dashing masculinity (this is an in-joke — I don’t have any dashing masculinity).

I want them to make fewer assumptions.

I want people to understand… that testosterone does not produce immediate full beards, and there is a lengthy period during which one must shave, so one does not look ridiculous.

That there is no scientific consensus on defining sex, so a layperson makes a fool of themselves trying it.

That it is not difficult to use the appropriate pronouns for people. I have tested that hypothesis and found it wanting, and, thus, trans people ought not to accept it as an excuse. If you scream in someone’s face until they are terrified, their struggle to be respectful becomes miraculously less uphill.

» Define yourself. «

Posted by on April 13th, 2010 at 08:00 am

Category: profiles 14 comments »

14 Responses to “Profile: Oliver”

  1. Anonymous

    I am definitely a fan of your straight-forward-ness.


  2. epinards

    Love your profile.

    A thought on this: “that testosterone does not produce immediate full beards, and there is a lengthy period during which one must shave, so one does not look ridiculous.”

    I like seeing trans guys or teenage cis guys with their early facial hair. I can feel their excitement at the physical growth into their masculinity. I don’t find it ridiculous at all, actually it makes me feel very tender and celebratory. Just another perspective.

    Love the ‘no scientific consensus’ part . . god things would be different if people could figure that out.

    Love love love your exposure of the fact that not being able to deal with gender pronouns is a choice people are making and nothing more.


  3. Anonymous

    “no scientific consensus…” YES. THIS! I always end up getting in arguments over this but you put it so briefly and matter-of-factly … sweet.


  4. Jay

    Omf, but you win. Seriously. I love your sense of humour (or at least, I find some of your comments funny, xP). And I love the entire ‘I want people to understand section.’


  5. Oliver

    Have just realised that I interpreted “third-person pronouns” as “gender-neutral pronouns” because I am a spoon.

    Thank you, lovely people.

    @epinards – you’re right, y’know. I was just considering all the people who’d gone “Don’t shave, I want to look at the beard you immediately have!!!” I’ve mellowed now, stopped shaving, and the fluff apparently makes me look “French, from some angles.” Oh, the puzzlement.


  6. JayVon

    Oliver is a wonderful! Good to see you on here :)


  7. Evan

    Screaming in someone’s face may get you what you want short term, but in the long run you are not doing yourself or the trans/queer community any PR favors by being mean and obnoxious. I sincerely hope you find a more respectable way to get your opinions heard and needs met. Good luck.


  8. Oliver

    Oh no, the terrible mean trans people! XD So, someone is repeatedly cruel and disrespectful to us and triggers our body dysphoria, when they are perfectly able not to do so, as my point said. We reply by shouting at them, that’s “obnoxious.”

    That is victim-blaming.

    Tell you what, have a wander over to some progressive blogs and read some words about how much bullshit the “we’d listen to you if you were less hostile” bullshit is. Really.

    Because… no. Just no.

    (and awww, thanks Jay ^__^ <3)


  9. epinard

    I don’t think screaming is always bad. There is a difference between yelling, and being abusive. I think it is good to underscore that people are making *choices* about whether or not to be respectful. A lot of people try to act like they have no choice in the matter when actually they do.

    Now obviously there is enough transphobia in this world so that even well-intentioned people are going to be hurtful at times and need to be corrected but if someone is trying to fly by without taking responsibility for their actions then I think screaming can occasionally be a helpful and clarifying response.

    Not to mention that a trans person, like every other kind of person, needs to be allowed to be themselves and not a representative of a group unless they are choosing to offer themselves up that way.

    This is all about screaming though. I never think it’s a good idea to be abusive. Not because I necessarily think that cruel people shouldn’t be treated badly but just because being cruel or abusive hurts the one who is doing it as well. Respect is the ultimate device of self-protection even under very demanding circumstances. But it is perfectly possible to respectfully scream at someone.


  10. Evan

    Epinard- I suppose you’re right that no one has an obligation to represent anyone other than themselves.

    I do firmly believe, however, that even if someone is disrespectful to you (not using your preferred pronouns) that does not give you license to be disrespectful to them. Yes, you can be assertive about your position, and- depending on your relationship to the person- even yell a bit, but “scream(ing) in someone’s face” is NEVER respectful in my book. They may start to use the correct pronouns after that, but it’s probably more out of fear than anything else.


  11. Evan

    I also want to say that I don’t in any way mean to discount how sh*tty it feels when someone uses the wrong pronouns for you. I know how much it can hurt :(


  12. Imogen

    Oliver, I hope you know that several months ago, I made some sarcastic comments about your lack of dashing masculinity, and for the fairly sizable length of time since then, I have been wracked with guilt and remorse about these comments and generally flagellating myself as an awful, wretched abomination of a human being, so it’s at least a partial relief that this is an in-joke I haven’t otherwise recognised.

    P.S. The above also goes for the aformentioned “French from some angles” comment. In fact, just assume that it’s the case for ALL of the things I have EVER SAID.

    P.P.S. Also, I think you should have included a picture of your face, as it is a nice face.

    *Returns to the dark lurky depths*


  13. Oliver

    You’re an oddment, Im. <3


  14. William

    Heya bro

    Trust you to get your profile published whilst I was revising for my exams. Well, I’ve found it now :P

    Screaming can be used as a second-to-last resort (the last resort being to remove that person from your life) and if my brother and I are thinking of the same incident, that’s what it was, a last resort against someone who not only constantly mispronouned all the trans people he knew but also tactlessly made a joke of it. I had to severely talk to the same person for recklessly and needlessly mentioning my trans status and my birthname *on film*.

    Other than that, totally with you (and talked to some other trans guys about it and they agree) that we can identify the sex of our bodies how we like and actually, our bodies are MALE. Why? Because that’s how we relate to our bodies.


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