Parton Me: (Celebrity) Appearances Can Be Deceiving

While the attendees of Pride™ weekend took the fight to the queer community’s greatest enemies, homophobia and public sobriety, I took Gay Christmas off this year to bury the hatchet on one of my longest-standing grudges: my totally imaginary and one-sided feud with a famous singer-songwriter. I dare not say her name, for fear that it will summon her to my blog to consume me with celebrity anxiety. I will offer that she is in a famous two-person band and married to a guy who wrote an episode of Doctor Who.

I don’t actually know her, and despite my obsession with her writing style, hope to never meet her, digitally or otherwise, due to my celebrity anxiety–

Which I guess I should explain in greater detail.

Celebrities make me anxious. Or rather, famous people who’s work/art has had a significant personal effect on me. It certainly wasn’t anxiety that compelled me to request Todd MacFarlane sign my Family Guy action figure or follow Sheriff Joe Arpaio around with a megaphone, narrating his day ala Waylon Jennings circa Dukes of Hazard.

But I can’t fathom what else would compel me to give a fake name. Lie about where I live. Tell jokes that offend even myself, in the hopes they just leave me alone. These are all things I have done while meeting people I admire. Living on the corner of Fear of Disappointing My Role Models and Disappointment In Myself For Feeling Like I’m Not Worth Even The Slightest of Human Connection.  Feels bad, man.

The first time Hugh Jasoll told me I was, in fact, a queer celebrity, I refuted his claim on the grounds that no one I’ve met in the community has pretended to not know me to avoid talking to me. Or ask me if propositions for sex go through my agent.


I have a love and respect for this singer/songwriter’s lyrical style that borders religious reverence.

You caught me, babe. That time I told you “I barely breathe when you are near”? I lied. I didn’t pull that out of my ass. I pulled it out of someone else’s.

I have, on more than one occasion, “quit songwriting” because a certain song on a certain day was enough to convince me I would never amount to that.

I grew tired of this, so I switched genres. Numerous times. My lyrics weren’t heartfelt enough for country, not linear enough for comedy, and not artsy enough for folk. I came around full circle and found myself comfortable with writing “punk”. I stopped comparing myself to the verbose and loquacious songwriters of genres past and focused on the other fish in my pond. Not to toot my own horn, but I make a pretty good punk lyricist.

Last week, I had a dream that I met said singer-songwriter, and fainted (another thing I have actually done). Dream celebrity then mocked me for the duration of my slumber to anyone who would listen. I woke up, made breakfast, and put Pandora on my iPad. One of her songs came on. I immediately deleted all the lyrics I had written over the last week. Defeat seemed inevitable. Not even my wall of “How to write better lyrics” books and daily affirmations of how great I am was going to protect me.

This was a force.

Many friends offered their sagely wisdom, but it was bandmate and collaborative life partner Miles who tied the anchor to my hot air balloon by pointing that said celebrity stand-in was probably representative of my doubt and not, in fact, a cosmic message that I should give up my dream of being a queer songstress. Which explains a lot, like how the aforementioned singer/songwriter looked nothing like herself in my dream, and why she used the phrase “You didn’t just lose your shit, you had it repossessed” which is something I and I alone say. Along with “Cool User Story, Bro” and “I swear I didn’t know she was a cis apologist”.

Even if I did suck, I deserve to suck in public, and no creepy obsession with another’s work that I should have probably just kept to myself should keep me from my Tori Amos-given right to suck it up to the max.

Somehow, the thought of attending Pride, where I would have to watch Sarah Silverman waving and blowing kisses to straight girls in bikinis, knowing that I and anyone like me will likely never be chosen to serve in such a capacity despite our credentials, would only reinforce this idea that I’m nobody until some major media outlet shits on something I created.

So instead of going to Pink Saturday, instead of going to Pride™–

I thrashed about in Miles’ living room.

Screaming. Clenching a notebook. Adding, subtracting syllables.

Dude, what rhymes with mutilation?

I twirled the skirt of my dress and imagined that I was in a bar in the Mission, playing for every person, famous and non-famous, whose opinion would mean anything to me.

I falsetto’d with reckless abandon.

It was a fucking blast. It was wholeness.

You see, I never had that moment of “ahhhh, this is how to live, this is who I really am” that the popular trans narrative informs us we’re supposed to have. Because being out, being visible, those things were never enough and they never will be.

It is not enough that I am living as a woman. I must perform. I must sing. And dance. Until I am in full commitment of this obsession, I can never fully enjoy a sunny day or a night out with friends.

But anyway.

As I laid on Miles’ carpet, a pen entangled in my hair, I imagined that every single person in attendance, every person who’se shoulder I cried on, every person whose autograph I would keep in my Dr. Pepper lunchbox, was thoroughly, utterly embarrassed and disappointed with me.

I sucked. I failed. In front of everyone.

And it didn’t matter. Like, at all.

Because fuck ‘em. If they don’t like it, they can do it themselves. Every one of them could have laughed in my face the next day, in front of strangers, and it still would not have taken away how much fun it was.

For reasons I promised not to disclose, I had to step down from my role in organizing with Folsom Street Fair. It was heartbreaking, and many tears were shed. After I had cried it out and made many an empty threat to just move out of the Bay entirely because I am tired of dealing with these mainstream organizations, I told Miles how excited I was we’d have more time to write Birthday Princess songs.

If activist drama, which is at least 10 times more real than my celebrity anxiety, won’t stop me from putting on a paper crown and singing of cannibalism, then yeah.

You’re not so big. None of you are. We’re all just living room Luba Lufts, occasionally put on display.

Nothing is worth surrendering the sensation that I, for 5 to 20 minutes at a time, rule the fucking world.

It wasn’t Pride, but I was pretty fucking proud of myself.

And that is how I learned to stop comparing my work others and psyching myself out of doing something you love. 


Dear Black Dahlia Parton,

 What do you think the single greatest issue facing trans people is today?

Violence, in all its forms.

We need to fight back against the violence of physical assault, especially against trans women of color, in our/their homes and in our/their neighborhoods.

We need to fight back against the violence of capitalist power exchanges which denies trans people housing, medical care and employment, and seeks to starve us into submission and silence.

We need to fight back against the violence of the police state that criminalizes and incarcerates trans women for surviving.

We need to fight back against the violence of the media, both “straight” and “gay”, that informs the public on how to dehumanize, to ridicule, to expose us to danger.

We need to fight back against the violence of ignorance and indifference in the medical community that turns trans people away from emergency rooms, denies us agency of our own bodies, and falsely labels us as mentally unstable in an effort to silence and discredit us.

We need to fight back against the violence of privilege within our community that allows trans men to speak for trans women, abuse without accountability and inform cis people that words like “tranny” are acceptable to use if you’re talking with, you know, the cool kinds of trans people who are with it.

We must resist the violence within ourselves, the loathing that leads us to judge one another, to establish a hierarchy based upon passing and heteronormativite behavior, to stay silent and complicit in the face of injustice because deep down in the Place Without A Name we feel we (and others) deserve it.

There are other forms of violence, surely, that I can’t even fathom, due to my privilege, perceive or speak of, but they exist and must also be resisted.

Dear Black Dahlia Parton,

I’ve got a problem, my problem is that I’m not getting the sex I want with my husband. The issue is that apparently he has low T and even when we had him on shots his ED didn’t really get any better. As a pre-op trans* woman the only penetrative sex we can have is anal and he doesn’t get hard enough for that and oral isn’t enough for me. I’ve not had any luck getting him to try any of the other medications out there yet and the aids we can get at adult stores aren’t enough to fix it. What can I do?

Help me Black Dahlia Parton, you’re my only hope.

Horny Down South

Firstly, it is not the place of you or I to compel your husband to try “any of the other medications out there”. If he doesn’t want to try them, he doesn’t have to, and any attempt to compel him otherwise is coercion. He has agency over his body, just as you do yours. If you’ve explained to him, in no uncertain terms, that you are not getting the sex you want with him, and he, knowing this, does not want to try any ED medications, then that’s that. End of line.

As far as a workaround, I recommend having him put his hand (or fingers, if that’s what you’re more comfortable with) up your ass. As a pre-op transwoman, I have found that two (gloved and lube) fingers up my ass very “filling”.

I don’t mean to break anyone’s hearts, but I am not “well endowed”. I have a small penis. Maybe 2 inches flaccid.

Oh shit.


So like I said, maybe 2 inches flaccid, maybe, MAYBE 5 at the very peak of arousal (which I don’t like to reach often because getting too hard hurts). This was so even before I began taking estrogen. Though I’m unlikely to be sought out for trans woman porn (though I’d be interested in knocking that off my bucket list while I’m currently unattached and despised by my previous  partners, so hit me up!), I feel no shame or angst about it. I wouldn’t want to fuck people who are only in it for my cock anyway.

Oh yeah! You should try having your husband fucking you with one hand and holding a vibrator, like, perhaps a Hitachi Magic Wand, right above your [whatever word you use to refer that part of your body], angled right at the base of it. This stimulates your p-spot from multiple directions and , if you are like me, will make you buck like a bronco, curl up your toes and fill you with a craving for curry. But your mileage may vary. Some prefer Trader Joe’s seaweed snacks.

Anyway. ABOUT ME.

Having a small dick encouraged me to develop an interest and knack for giving oral and using my hands. Even if I was hung like a bear, even if I was still living as a man, I would probably prefer fingering a woman to climax to putting my stick shift in her. There’s something very…emotionally gratifying to having my hand inside of someone, influencing their every quiver and quake with my fingers. Like a painting or warm piano. Some nights, it’s all I need. I just want to finger you, sip my post-sex gin and tonic and curl up with my blanket of smug and confidence. I’m not the best looking girl, or the most interesting. But I can make you sing.

What I’m trying to say is that one’s sexual performance and confidence need not be tied to their factory-issued genitalia. It does not speak ill of your gender or your sexual prowess to have genitalia that is not optimal for penetrative sex. You didn’t mention that your husband was necessarily struggling with those issues, but you and your husband aren’t the only people reading this,and I just wanted everyone to know that there’s no wrong to fuck another person. PROVIDED THAT IT’S CONSENSUAL AND PROPER SAFER SEX PRACTICES ARE FOLLOWED.

Also, this sets me up as somewhat of an “experienced source” for this next part, where I give you tips on fucking and being fucked in the ass with a hand.

There is no such thing as too much lube. It doesn’t exist. You’ll find the loch ness monster and compassionate conservative before you find a situation where you’ve used too much lube. Changing the sheets is chump change when compared to anal tearing.

If you’re just starting (or want to be more intimate) I would recommend the fuckee laying on their back, with the fuckee laying atop or beside them with lots of eye contact. Sometimes, you feel the urge to wince and clench before you can vocalize that you’re having a bad time, so I like to watch out for that. Plus this position gives you the ability to smooch while fucking.

I am a big fan of smooching. Making out is, to me, of higher priority than sex, though that may be because I have known to come from making out alone. I also wrote a treatise on using your mouth as a primary sex organ.

Oh oh oh, AND if you lay flat, or on all fours, the fucker can position their hand so that they can thrust with their hips while fucking you, which can be a + if you’re into the hip thrusting part of fucking.

I, as a fuckee, don’t like laying on my stomach, because whenever I lay face down it feels like my partner takes 10x longer to put on their glove and lube, and by the time they finally get around to fucking me, I’m all clenched up. And then they have to soothe me down until I relax a little. In my experience, people who purposely take forever to put on a glove and lube are the same people who ask you if want them to count before they put the needle in and then just do it without counting anyway. They are not to be trusted : /

The fucker should always trim their nails before putting a finger in someone’s butt. Even with a glove, long nails fucking hurt. If long nails are like, your style of whatever, slip cotton balls into the fingers of the glove before putting it on and make sure the cotton gets under your nail. I’m a bit of a princess with my skin and will also rub a little lotion in my hands because wearing gloves always makes me a little dry and I hate that.

Warm the lube by rubbing it between your hands or squishing it between your fingers before inserting into an anal cavity. Cold lube makes muscles constrict and leads to a bad time. Warm lube = a warm ass, and a warm ass is a happy ass.


Always start small to begin with. Even if you have lots of practice with dildos and fists. Start with one finger and work your way up.

I assumed, from the wording of your question, that by “aids you can get at the adult stores” you also meant strap-ons. If not, I would recommend that, too. These days there are many a model that have the hollowed out phallus so you can just place it over your penis. As a penis-equipped person, I don’t always strap, but when I do, I prefer a harness with a solid cock.

The first time I strapped and fucked another woman, like the day I bought my first vibrator, was one of those strange moments where I found my gender and sexual identity validated by a material object, and led me to question the universal definition of womanhood.

I would also suggest buying asking him to fuck you with a vibrator and playing with leaving the vibrator in while he does other stuff to you. That’s, like, a major + of vibrators for me. If it’s the right length and I’m sitting/laying in the right position, I can leave it in there while my partner hits me or goes to work on my stick shift, which aren’t mutually exclusive.


Oh man, if you guys are up for it, have him finger your ass while going down on you:

This is why I love fingering so much: it allows you to do so much at once.

I, I can’t. I don’t have anything else. That Billy Mays picture is just too much.

I’m sorry if I spent too much of my answer talking about my sexual preferences, but I am more of a field researcher than armchair sexologist.

For what it’s worth, I’m really really really really happy to hear that you’re looking for ways to work around the obstacles preventing you from having a “normal sex life”. It saddens the slut in me to see so many people writing themselves and each others as lemons because this or that isn’t the way that porn and the cis heternormative genital information center would lead us to believe is “correct” or “normal”.

Regardlessess if my advice was helpful or not, I think you’re on the way towards resolving the issue you’re having, simply because you have the right attitude about it.

I am a woman with a small penis and I’m fucking foxy. Is what I’m trying to say.

Send your questions to Or don’t. It’s a free country. For now.

One response

  1. Miles

    Band practice was more satisfying than anything I’ve ever done at Pride :D I felt like a rockstar, stumbling along, trying to figure out the notes and only playing Where Eagles Dare at half speed.

    July 3, 2012 at 10:09 am

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