Friday is either the "middle day" or the "first day" of SCC for many. Some of us like to arrive earlier in the week, to have time to spend in the city, to take in some of the pre-convention events, and to be able to catch up with people and do things before the convention's busiest days. Thursday is the official first day, when seminars and the luncheons begin. Friday has seminars, lunch and the first dinner, which is less "formal" than the one on Saturday.
You can tell who is coming to SCC for the educational tracks and who is coming to party-how early did they arrive? The later the arrival, the more likely they'll skip official things (either by choice or because they didn't bother to register). It's one of those open secrets.
One good thing that happened this year was the inclusion of a Trans Health Fair. Though SCC has had the Robert Eads Health Partnership for years, which is named after an FTM transsexual who was the subject of the film "Southern Comfort." Robert died because he had ovarian cancer and could not get medical treatment until it was too late due to what he was. In his honor, FTM's have an opportunity to visit with doctors to be examined and treated for gynecological issues. This has been a vital, important part of SCC.
And this year, a health fair was conducted Friday at the hotel for all transpeople. This included HIV/STD testing, free flu shots, education and advice, etc. Also, during the week there was a table set up to learn about HIV/STD issues and to provide condoms and dental dams for those who wished them. Now you may not see this as a big thing but to me, it was huge. It was really the first time that the community seemed to acknowledge sexuality as a real part of who and what we are-and how much we're all at risk.
I joke that "What happens at SCC, stays at SCC." But it's not really a joke-there are some things that keep going beyond the convention. It'd be naive to think that when you put a group of people over the age of consent, some of whom are sexually active and who may not exhibit very good self-control...What you do as an adult is your thing; how responsible you are matters to all of us. With HIV/STD infection rates on the rise in general, while survival rates have gone up the meds that are required to live have their own issues. I know too many people who are HIV+ who would give anything to be healthy again.
So, an acknowledgement of this issue to me was a very good thing. And I'm hoping it'll remain a part of the convention from now on, and perhaps include a seminar on the subject as part of the regular schedule. I lack the medical background to do this, but I hope someone else will...
Lunch was forgettable, and I only made on seminar the whole day. And I lost my new sunglasses-which is why I buy cheap ones. But I did manage to do one thing kind of important...
I've never had a makeover at SCC. I've had other people do my makeup before, and it's always interesting to see what someone who knows what they are doing can do with me. And I had a little extra cash left...I walked over to the God Save The Queen booth and asked if they might just have an opening that day. I figured it was probably a lost cause, but no-they did have an opening at the end of the day, about 5PM. I just needed to show up, shaved and without any makeup on. I took the spot, ran upstairs to get shaved and put on my outfit. What I was going to wear was a black Z. Cavaricci dress that I'd gotten from Torrid. It's got an asymmetrical zipper on the front, much like a motorcycle jacket. Dressing it up I wore rhinestones (necklace, earrings, and bracelet) with fishnet stockings and my Le Dame Marliyn heels from Shoe Express.
Managed to get downstairs for my appointment, which if you know me is an accomplishment. Nicole Page Brooks asked me a few questions then began to work. She gave me a look that was as she called "Lady doing dinner at the Marriott." I didn't point out that we were at the Crowne Plaza; never criticize your make up artist at work. What I got was a polished nighttime look, dressy but not overdone. And I loved how she made me look-far better than I could have hoped for. And well worth the money...
Dinner was great, and I got a lot of compliments on how I looked. When we adjourned to the lounge for drinks afterward and a few photos:
We were just talking and I was happy that one of my favorite people had managed to arrive. It would not have been the same without her! I thought that was a great shot of me, then someone took this:
What do you see? Someone who's content, happy, comfortable? Who is having a great time? I do. I like the person I see here, and I missed her a lot. She hasn't been around much. There's been so much to keep her away-life, issues, pain, depression...Who wants to be around with all that going on?
Maybe its when I see this, I realize how much I've missed that. I tell people, if you're going to go through all of this and you aren't having fun, why bother? I forgot my own advice.
A fabulous evening, one that I'll remember for a very long time...