Last week, I was interviewed by Denise Holliday, host of Over the Rainbow on CKDU radio in Halifax, Canada. You can listen to our conversation here. Denise is a transgender parent herself and was eager to talk about her family. Toward the end of the interview (which was cut short by Democracy Now! at noon) I mentioned my latest endeavor - outreach for the No Dumb Questions film and web project. If you haven't seen it, No Dumb Questions is a documentary about three young sisters whose Uncle Bill is becoming their Aunt Barbara.
Well, it turns out Canadians know another Bill who became Barbra. Bill Amesbury had a few hit songs in the 1970s, including "Virginia (Touch Me Like You Do)", and has since transitioned to become Barbra Amesbury. Canadian crooner James Collins released the song "Do You Mind If We Talk About Bill" in 2002, in which he asks Barbra whether she can talk about her life as Bill. Denise played the song on air before our interview segment. The YouTube video is pretty amazing:
I like how this song touches on the dilemma of talking about the past (pre-transition) with transsexual people. He keeps asking 'is it alright?'. As SOFFAs, we want to do and say the right thing; sometimes, it's hard to know what that means, especially when navigating discussions of the past.