Trans-Mission Logs of the Starship Gender

Recordings From Our Sojourns in the Intersectional Universe

It’s been six weeks since I published Disability Driven Development. A lot has happened with that project in that time – more than I can fit into this update. There will be more news there soon, but I wanted to take a moment and explore a bit more of what I’m doing, now that the why is out there, as well as to dig into more detail about how I imagine all this unfolding.

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One of the most useful skills I’ve chosen to develop in my own life is that of empathy. This is an exploration of how we can invest in and strengthen that skill, and how it can unlock tremendous improvements in life – both within ourselves, and around us.

It is a glimpse into play as a way to befriend our imaginations; and imagination as a way to befriend everyone – and everything – else.

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I think a lot about the wisdom and sentiment behind Audre Lorde’s famous observation that “the master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house.” It’s a crucial insight, for those of us seeking better ways to exist, but it is after all more of a starting point than an answer unto itself.

There are two questions that this oft-recited quote raises in my own mind. First, how can we recognize which of the tools we wield are problematic? And secondly, what are our other options?

I am hardly alone in exploring these questions, to be clear; but what follows is a look into my process of trying to answer them.

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I am very fortunate and privileged to have enough financial security to live in a house with a decent-sized yard. It’s a nice little corner lot in a quiet neighborhood… but it stands out.

Unlike every other home in the area, my yard is not a nicely-kept, routinely-mowed lawn, surrounded with a neat hedge or flower arrangements.

This is an exploration of why I refuse to change that.

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I’m writing this on the evening of December 3rd, 2022 – on what is referred to as “International Day of Persons with Disabilities.” If, like me, you prefer identity-first language for such things, you may also have a renaming of this in your head – my own is “International Disabled People’s Day” – but regardless of how we phrase the notion, it seems like a useful moment in which to articulate something I’ve been thinking about for a while now.

I’ve got a lot to say about who usually creates digital technology – particularly software – and how that’s a problem. But more importantly, I’ve got some thoughts about how to change that.

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I didn’t expect to write anything today.

Honestly, I didn’t expect to do much of anything at all.

Trans Day of Remembrance is a hard one for me, every single year. It’s a sobering reminder of how close I’ve come to having a candle lit for myself.

But it’s also a reminder of why I live the way I do – loudly, fiercely, insistently. So I wrote some things.

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On April 28th, 2019, I wrote what I have come to think of as the most important love letter of my life. It was, by volume, mostly exposition – storytelling context, establishing the circumstances and setting the scene – and concluded with a short but poignant declaration of love for myself.

This, here, is also a love letter. It will begin, as is my way, with some exposition; and it will conclude with the heart of what I want to say.

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I couldn’t resist the title of this post. I’ll take a moment to explain it properly, because it is a silly computer programming joke, but the thing I’m trying to say here really has very little to do with programming or even computers in general – I promise. If it helps, just think of this as having the alternate title: “True or False is a bad way to think about things.” You can even skip to the section with that heading if you like!

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I spend a lot of time thinking. About everything.

Sometimes, that includes thinking about myself – who I am, how I wound up where I am in life, and where I want to go next. This is a story about myself, and how much things have changed because of how I’ve chosen to think about me.

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Editorial note: I originally wrote this years ago, and later posted it as part of a public blog, on a predecessor to this site. I’ve manually transcribed it here, unchanged, on 2022-12-09.

I stopped smoking on April 6, 2018. Over a year ago now. Even during some intense stress the past few months I’ve barely had any cravings, but I’m sure as fuck having some now.

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