Friday, July 22, 2016

Hello.

There is me, Hank. There is the cat, Johnny Karate. I am fat and short and redheaded, and my smile is sort of crooked. I wear black framed glasses, because I like simplicity, and my eyes are a good blue. My belly is a keg that overhangs my belt. The cat is tiny and black and has fangs that overhang his lip, and he looks a little like a bat. He's not bright, but he's sweet. I'm bright and sweet or salt in turn. And that's the two of us, companions. We're used to each other and generally enjoy our company.

We sleep mornings and we live nights, and in between I write trivia rounds and thereby make my living. At dusk I take my bag of tricks, my questions and answers, and cajole smart people into buying drinks while showing off their store of dumb facts. I used to be pukingly shy. Teenage Hank would be horrified if he knew his future. I work blue, and I've lost some of the ability to watch my tongue around small children. Sorry, kids. Don't mind Uncle Hank, he gets excited and forgets his manners. He means well.

Johnny kicks things off shelves and eats expensive food, because he's special. And kind of an asshole.

I'm usually very fond of myself and comfortable in my skin, although I'm a trans man and self acceptance isn't part of the Standard Narrative. Teenage Hank was a different creature than Now Hank, poor guy. He was difficult to be, at times, and I am glad I'm not him now.

This year I turned forty, and I'm of the last generation not raised on the internet. It leaves me cautious, still, about what I put in writing and leave out where people can see it. But silence sparks no conversation. So this is me, Hank. Hello.

38 comments:

  1. Hello, Hank! As a longtime reader of "Bless Our Hearts," I'm glad to see you join the blog world. I GET the internet caution thing, but I've found that it gets easier as I go (and as I realize that actually very few people read what I write anyway). And for what it's worth, I wouldn't want to be my teenaged self either!

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  2. Hank! This is wonderful that you are writing. The conversation has begun! I remember your picture blog and I always thought - what a great mind this person has.
    It is so nice to see you writing and revealing what's swirling around in that noggin. I'm hooked!

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  3. Now just don't stop! The world needs Hank.

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  5. Hi Hank! Good to see you blogging!

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  6. all cats think they are special

    xxalainaxx

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  7. I am glad you are blogging. I was going to leave a message on your other blog because it has been so long. Or maybe I did. I am getting old. Anyway, keep at it! :-)

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  8. Looks like Mama posted my link - 272 pageviews in 5 hours! Thanks, mom.

    Steve: Howdy! I assume everybody wants to read what I write, obviously. (No, I kid.)

    liv: That picture blog was a lot of fun, and I think of going back to it, but never really have the time.

    Mama: Clearly. Ha!

    Jennifer: Good to see you posting.

    mrs.missalanineus: JK is special in that special way - a high fever scrambled his brain as a kitten.

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  9. Hi Hank,
    Love your writing!
    Love the title of your blog!
    Love your candor!
    Thank you. (Maybe sometime you could give us a trivia question)

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  10. Hi, suz, thanks! Oh, I'm sure there'll be trivia.

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  11. Hey Hank! Looking forward to reading your blog. Been quietly following your mama for quite a while now and like her, you seem to have a wonderful way with words too.

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  12. Camille, hi! We're a wordy family.

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  13. And now I understand Mary's love and compassion for trans kids and their families a little bit better. Her love for you, of course, could not be clearer :)

    Coming here because your mom sent me makes me feel like a bit of an old lady, but we're the same age, so ... I can stop that :) Looking forward to reading!

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    1. Mom's very good and not posting what we wouldn't be comfortable having posted. If we're the same age, you can't possibly be an old woman. Looking forward to you reading.

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    2. I think that one of the best things about our family is that we are respectful of each other.

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    3. Plus, we crack each other the fuck up. Those are our superpowers.

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  14. Hi Hank! I found your mom's blog through your old blog Tallyhassle. I had just moved there from Colorado and was suffering some major culture shock and Googled Tallahassee blogs and found you! Glad to see you writing again and thank you for sharing. I wish I had met your family when I lived down there, I may have stayed. I'm now living in Columbus, OH but I love it here. Keep writing! ~Sarah from Columbus

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    1. Less hot there than here, I hope. Too bad we didn't meet!

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    2. Nope, we are currently in the "heat dome". At least in Tallahassee we could run off to Wakulla.

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    3. I discovered in my 20s that I can't live anywhere landlocked.

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  15. Hi l am Maggi a Brit. Live in The UK which is bonkers right now. Ifollow your mums bog and we are FB Friends. You sure have her talent for writing. I was moved by your words after Orlando. I love the pics of you holding babies and kids. You look as if you were made for the job if that makes sense. I am a batty old bint and batshit crazy as Mary says.

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  16. Hi l am Maggi a Brit. Live in The UK which is bonkers right now. Ifollow your mums bog and we are FB Friends. You sure have her talent for writing. I was moved by your words after Orlando. I love the pics of you holding babies and kids. You look as if you were made for the job if that makes sense. I am a batty old bint and batshit crazy as Mary says.

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    1. Welcome to my blog! Mom's batshit crazy herself sometimes, so it makes sense that you get along.

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    2. Sometimes you are the sanest person I know.

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    3. Maggi here. Note I will come up as anonymous as I am on different device. Suspect this will make the dratted Blogstapo make me identify things in tiny pics. Sigh! Anyway! Oh yes we are sisters in crazy. The day will come when we shall both be sitting on our steps at each side of the pond. In our vests swigging gin out of the bottle whilst ranting at passers by! Seems crazy to us that grew up without the internet (we didn't even have a damn phone) to 'know' and love people you have never met but I love your mum and I am very very fond of the lot of you because I feel like i know you all so well due to your mum or should I say mom is writes totally from her heart as do you Hank. As do I I suppose although I shouldn't admit to it being a Brit and all that.

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    4. It still seems strange to me that I have never met some of my best friends. I suppose it always will. But there you go.

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  17. Hi Hank, I'm glad you're writing. I will be reading you. Nice to meet you. Joanne

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    1. Nice to meet you. Glad you're reading.

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  18. Hello Hank. I like this. You come across with beautiful honesty and integrity and this is what the world needs. Well, I do at least. Cheers to the cat as well.

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    1. Well, I do embellish some, although not in this post. What good is a story if you don't polish it a little? Johnny Karate says cheers back. Actually, he says "meep", because he's a weird cat and doesn't meow at all, but you get the idea.

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  19. I am so proud of you, my brother. You and I have always had a special connection, and I am overjoyed to see the same connection with you and my boys. (Although please no malt liquor till they're 21 😜) love you! -lily

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    1. You say 21, I hear 16. Ha! Love you!

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  20. I'm so glad that you're writing and look forward to getting to know you in the weird way this community binds people together!

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    1. I'm glad to be writing again, I tell you what. And I can always use more community.

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