I was born in 1952.
During that prehistoric period doctors had no way of predicting an infant’s sex, yet my mother was so convinced that her second child would be a girl that a year’s worth of pretty pink baby clothing lay neatly stacked in a crib prior to my birth.
I imagine she experienced more than a little disappointment after 20 hours of labor to hear the attending doctor’s words, “Congratulations, you have a boy.”
Some women would have resigned themselves to this destiny, however my mother dressed me in pink dresses until I was 9 months old, after which my father declared firmly, “He’s a boy. Boys aren’t supposed to wear pink.”
This infantile transvestite period inflicted little if no psychological scarring, but every November I fancy dressing up in the extravagant silk costume for the Thai festival honoring the water goddess, if only so I can say that I was a ka-toey for Loi Krathong.
This one-night transformation into a deeply-desired daughter would reward my late mother with an after-life smile.
Unfortunately for my mother I have always resisted this cross-dressing urge, since no 55-year old man should wear a dress unless it’s to escape from prison, although I have occasionally wondered about my appearance as a woman and several years ago at the Plaza Hotel I tried on a long wig.
"I was not too attractive, although a female friend remarked upon seeing the photo that I resembled Joni Mitchell on steroids.
I was thinking more on the lines of Brigitte Bardot, but I had to admit there was some similarities.
It must have been the hair.
I love Joni and my mother loved her music.