Snow Trek to Star Wars


As a friend and I begin our mile long trek through falling snow and slush-filled sidewalks to see the eighth installment of the Star Wars Skywalker saga and the ninth installment of the Star Wars franchise, The Last Jedi, I calm his near conniption and re-come out as flakes of white blanket my black framed glasses and my warm breath seems to fog up any non-flake filled part of the lens, which leaves me slightly impaired on the slippery path before us.

I had forgotten that I’d come out to him already, and I find myself at a loss for who I am and who I am not out to at work.

It is not something I hide, as I wear my transgender necklace everyday and led the understanding New Mexico LGBTQ+ youth training at the school, but still, I don’t begin every conversation with, “Hi, I’m transgender, which probably means you a) think I am the devil b) are confused or c) could give no fucks. Or, in all likelihood something else entirely.” Perhaps, I should begin every conversation in this manner.

As our walk continues, with brief pauses for snow-filled photo opportunities, I begin to lose feeling in my toes. My blue canvas boat-esque shoes are not made for snow, but I did not want to get Philadelphia street grit on my beloved black and white plaid Converse. The blue canvas shoes should be on their last leg, since they are slightly stained by ketchup, ranch, and green chile stew spills of elementary lunch duty. Yet, knowing myself and my inability to purchase new articles of clothing and throw out old articles of clothing, some (at this point very few) still hanging around from the days of high school, I know I will likely continue to slog through streets, sidewalks, and hallways in them until the soles completely wear through.

Arriving at the theater, which possibly due to the snow, is fairly empty for a Friday night, I ask one of the theater employees if theater 17 is in the middle of the movie. It is a dumb question I know because it is 5:36, and our movie begins at 7:30.

Out of sheer dumb luck, the employee laughs at the idea of waiting for two hours to see a film that is about to start in the theater behind him, theater 3. He says we are free to wait, but if we want, we can go right on in.

We do.

The movie plays.

It . . . I won’t provide any thoughts or opinions or spoilers about it here.


But, after Episode VIII ends, and we begin to walk back to the hotel, I am struck by a thought.

This will likely be the first Star Wars film I won’t see with my family, let alone in the theater with them.

I am filled with almost a melancholic sadness as I remember.

I remember watching the original films re-released in the late 90s in a theater, which would later become a comedy club, where the comedian would tease my stepfather for his . . . lack of hair.

I remember watching The Phantom Menace in a nearly empty theater in Sand Springs, wondering how it could be possible that the theater wasn’t packed.

I remember watching Attack of the Clones, arriving late, missing the crawler, and being so frustrated until I was so entranced by the movie, that the tardiness no longer seemed to matter.

I remember watching . . . well, I don’t actually have a clear memory of watching Revenge of the Sith, but I do remember watching The Incredibles for my birthday, hearing the voice of the soon-to-be Emperor in a trailer, and being unable to contain my nerd excitement for the sixth film and third episode.

I remember watching The Force Awakens, knowing that in days everything about my place in my family would soon change.

I remember watching Rogue One, my brother opting not to attend the showing to read in the Barnes and Noble near the theater.

And, as I am flooded by memories of Star Wars and action figures and my mom shouting upstairs that Attack of the Clones might be too scary for my youngest sister and Lego battles, I hear my brother’s words from a few nights before when I was in a NyQuil addled state as he said, “I am mad at you,” and I said nothing in response.

I can’t shake the words from me.

Do I address it?

Do I let it go?

I know, or at least I have a very strong idea of why . . . the article.

“Child of Trump Nominee Speaks Out”

On a loop, “I am mad at you” plays on my mind as I pull up Twitter while waiting in the hotel restaurant for my avocado bruschetta and goat cheese fritters.

And, then, I see it.

CDC is banned by the Trump administration from using the word “transgender,” and the reality of what that means shakes me to my core.

I remain fairly silently and withdrawn throughout dinner.

I feel hopeless.

Via text, I vent to a friend and apologize for venting.

I feel hopeless still.

After dinner, as I close my eyes and try to fall asleep, I scroll through a text exchange with that same friend to find what I am looking for and need to see.

It reads, “Don’t let them get you. You are stronger than that. I know you are.”

I read the text again and again.

I close my eyes.

The loop drowns out.

My core shakes less.

And, I fall asleep.


Child of Trump Nominee Speaks Out

Report: Trump Bans ‘Transgender,’ ‘Fetus,’ ‘Science-Based’ From CDC Documents


Consequences, An Exchange

I am really disappointed that u would intentionally try and destroy your dad’s career..


I am really disappointed that he would accept a job offer from a racist, bigot, serial sexual assaulter.


So u want to try and destroy his career.. no one is trying to destroy u.. only wanting your happiness.


You really think this will destroy his career? Every anti-LGBTQ Nominee has been confirmed. But, if he is going to represent Oklahoma, all Oklahomans deserve to know how he views LGBTQ people.


Why are u not embracing your life and being happy .. why try your hardest to hurt your dad (Redacted) (redacted) (redacted) and (redacted)..


You think this is about me trying to hurt people? You think that is who I am. I am standing up for who I am. And, I am standing up for every queer person in Oklahoma.


It is so unfair repeating things your dad said when he first found out.. very mean and cruel.. I am shocked u would do this..


Really? He has not bothered to try acceptance. Besides, if he really believes those things, why is afraid of someone finding out?


U don’t have to stand up to your dad. He loves u.. yes I think this is about u intentionally trying to hurt him.. you can say u are trying to let people know but u are just spreading hate and anger.. u are suppose to be happy and having love for your life.. love for friends and  love for your family.


Wow, I am not shocked that this is the side you have chosen. Just disappointed. I work on the Reducing LGBTQ Adolescent Suicide team, which stands up for students. That is what this is about. This is not about hurting my father or my family, but it is about protecting people who cannot protect themselves and to protect him.


He dosent think those things u said. He was just reacting in the heat of the moment. This isn’t easy. He is accepting.. u will never know how this feel. I can not believe u could try and hurt him and (redacted) and (Redacted)..


Months after I came out, you told me that he said if I had come out when I was a child you both would have taken me to conversion therapy. Also, if he doesn’t believe I am possessed by demons and the devil. Great, he is not an idiot. Doesn’t make him not an asshole.


No one needs to be protected from your dad. This isn’t about taking sides. This is about me telling MY child that it is terribly wrong and mean and cruel to try to intentionally hurt your dad.. I didn’t even talk to your dad. He just told me to read the article.


In another place and time, maybe, it would not be about taking sides, but unfortunately, that is not the world we live in. So, yeah, I am going to speak out against a nominee who mocked queer people my entire childhood and is taking a job offer from a man who jokes about hanging the gays.


He never said that I told u that was one scenario that could have happened if u came out as a child. He never said that. U and I were talking.. u are right to help kids get through this. You are wrong trying to divide and talk about sides.. this is wrong to try and hurt ur dad.


That is not how I remember the conversation.


Well that is how I remembered the conversation.. your dad never even thought it possible u doing this as a child. U and I talked about that.. this is wrong.


A division occurred the night after I came out. It has been widening since. Sometimes, it is the big things like this. Sometimes, it is smaller things, things that stay with me.


U want a division..


If that is what you think, you are as lost as he is.


All I feel is u want us not to accept u.. but Nicholas Bailey (Redacted) I accept u and love u! I want u to have an extraordinary life!! I want u to find love and happiness.. I don’t want u hurt but I don’t want u 2 hurt anyone either.. this life is the only one u will have.. live your life with peace love and happiness.. people don’t have to agree.. that’s impossible..

No, people don’t have to agree. But, I will never agree with what you have said today. I will be fine. But, I will always continue to fight for people who don’t have peace, love, and happiness simply for being who they are.

Another thing, by accepting this job, he is either a white supremacist, or he is okay with accepting a job from a white supremacist. Either way, whatever moral compass he had is broken.

Where Things Stand

Two years ago, I came out to my fiancee as transgender, which ended that relationship. A month later, I would come out to my brother and parents. Here is where things stand.


Dear Senator,


Hey made it to Quartz mt.. I want to talk to u soon.. I am in class until 6. Then A mtg. Then dinner.. so if u are available this evening I would like to talk to u..


Have a good time at Quartz Mountain. I’m not really available tonight, getting ready for a Paint Night tomorrow.


Ok.. have fun painting.. I didn’t know I had upset you again. I will delete my Facebook account as soon as I can figure out how to save my pictures..


Why would you delete your Facebook account? That makes no sense. If you stand by your posts, why delete it?


Because u get very upset and I don’t want to continually upset u.. life is short


I get very upset? There are so many other things that make me upset than your Facebook posts. I am still not even sure what blog post you are referring to.


While I have no idea if this message will reach you or make a difference, but I could not live with myself if I did not express my concern. The Trump administration continues to nominate radical and dangerous individuals to high government positions, and with a heavy heart, this also includes my father, Frank M. Coffman for the position United States Marshal for the Eastern District of Oklahoma.


I am way more bothered by my father’s new job than anything I have ever seen on your Facebook wall. But, I do want to add this. Your post about Puerto Rico and CNN being fake news scares me. It really does. It is naive and discredits the media. And just so you know, my coworker lost family members in the hurricane that hit Puerto Rico. The island is devastated and will take years to recover.


I am very sorry. For your feelings and your friend who lost their family members

Deleting your Facebook page is ridiculous. If you feel a need to apologize, listen to this podcast instead. There are nine episodes, and listening to them would mean more to me than an apology ever would.


Ok.. do I download something


Did the link not show up for you?


I see it. I will have to get head phones


Almost two years ago, I came out to my parents as transgender, and needless to say, it went poorly. I am writing to you because a person in the position of U.S. Marshal must be objective and non-biased  in regards to following the law. Based on everything I know about my father, he is committed to his prejudices over his respect for the law. For instance, beyond a shadow of a doubt, I know he views the Black Lives Matter movement as criminal. Yet, it is his disdain for the LGBTQ+ community that frightens me the most. He refuses to accept family members as LGBTQ+ and has explicitly told me that I am under the influence of demons and corrupted by society because I am transgender.


Why are u bothered by your dads new job as a us marshal in Oklahoma


Because the Trump administration is threatening the very foundation of this country’s democracy and my father wants to work for that administration. Also, as radical and extreme as the Trump administration is and out of everyone in Oklahoma, the Trump administration sees my father as a kindred spirit for this role.


Whoever the president is has to appoint the Marshall.. you know your dad is not a kindred spirit.. he was more a bush kindred spirit.. I think he quit being a secret service agent because he didn’t want to be involved so closely with trump..


I have no idea why he quit the USSS. And while I used to think he aligned his views with moderate Republicans, I know the media he consumes and the views he holds. Just his views on social justice movements and LGBTQ+ individuals certainly does not make me feel safer or confident that he will objectively use his authority to protect all Americans.


I disagree.. if something happened your dad would not see gender or race or anything to help and protect.. u seem very angry and filled with rage!


Where is this coming from? And, of course I am angry, but filled with rage is a bit extreme. And, unfortunately, knowing things my father believes, I have to disagree with you about him.


To talk to u .. u don’t seem angry.. your blogs and text are extremely angry and raging!! U have been hurt by your dad and u r very sensitive to him at every level.. it is OK for people to have different beliefs and opinions!! It is EVERYONES right to feel and think differently.. and then of course someone thinks they are right and someone else is wrong! But to try and force that anyone believes exactly to believe/agree with everything u do is impossible


At this time, he and I barely speak, and his support of radical conservatism only drives us farther and farther apart. It is heartbreaking to write this to you, but if I do not speak out, who will? I ask you to oppose his nomination and to continue to speak out against other current and future Trump nominees that threaten democracy and the freedoms of this country.


You are completely right that everyone is entitled to their own beliefs and opinions. Here is a key difference though. Some of those key differences could cost me my job, my healthcare, a place to live, my students’ families, and lives. Not all thoughts and opinions are right or just, even though you are entitled to them.


Yes every opinion and every thought can cost someone something.. costing a life is the most important loss.. the things your dad said to u was horrible and he was falling apart.. and the things I say to u are not to hurt u..but past all of that u can’t make anyone feel what u feel


Is he still falling apart? Are you? Regardless, the things I say and write may not change how anyone thinks or feels, but I have to try. Because, if I don’t, who will? And, how much damage will be done in the meantime if I stay silent?


No he is ok.. being a Marshall removes him further from trump. I am ok.. I just don’t like feeling like we r fighting . I accept and love who u r. I want u to love me and accept who I am..


While that is not entirely accurate about his new job, I would prefer us not to disagree. However, I will not stay silent. I love you both, but that doesn’t mean I will just accept your views and opinions just because you are family.


Accept isn’t the right word.. from my text.. u don’t have to accept my beliefs maybe accept the right to be different from each other.. have u thot much about meditating for inner peace


I certainly accept your right to be different. I don’t have to be okay with it. Just like you don’t have to accept me for who I am. And meditating? I’d rather be a bit more proactive for inner peace, like getting involved, contacting legislators, etc.


Just sometime for peace and to relax a bit


What brings me peace is knowing that I have done something in the face of what is happening.


Thank you for your time,

Nicholas Bailey


Ok what do u do to relax


Paint nights. Movies. Spend time with friends.


Child of Trump Nominee Speaks Out


I knew since middle school

that something was off,

but I didn’t have the words to understand it

until college.


I didn’t think that it could be me,


I knew that I could never come out.



I knew there was no way that I would ever say a word about it,

question it.


Not even a hint.


I just knew that I would lose my family and


if I ever said anything about it.


I never thought I could live through that.


I had just moved with my fiancée,


I was suicidal from the guilt of who I was.


I had forced myself to believe I wasn’t trans,

a freak.


It was why I was suicidal.


But, I fell in love with my work,


it saved my life.


I felt like I was finally at a place

that was making

a real difference

in the world.

And, it gave me a reason

to live.



that reason

began to save



Hope, An Exchange

I hope you come visit. For a lot of reasons, I am not sure if I will be around for the holidays.


Say what now? Um why?????


(Redacted), I thought you should know I am transgender for sometime now, in fact I was going to tell you when (redacted), but I was asked not to by (redacted). More recently, telling you was brought up again, but again, I was asked not to because of fears of you being bullied if you know, which honestly makes no sense to me.

This is why I won’t be in Oklahoma for Christmas and am undecided for Thanksgiving. It is not easy continuing to hide who you are with family, and it is even harder knowing some of the views family has towards the LGBTQ+ community.

I am not sure how you will react to this, but I hope I will have your continued love and support. Know that I love you and will always be there for you if you need me.


Honestly, I’m not sure how I am supposed to react, I am a little shocked, but if this is what you want, then I support your decision. I love you too


I can understand and appreciate that. It shocked everyone. I appreciate your support. It means the world to me.


I couldn’t have asked for a better or more hopeful response. Where things go from here, only time will tell, but this is a moment of hope.

A moment.

Another Tuesday

Some things seem impossible.

Impossible to do.

Impossible to hope for.

Tonight was a sliver of hope and a strong rebuke, a rebuke to bigotry, corruption, and deceit.

The Resistance stands strong.


The above tweet flashes onto the screen of my iPad. I can’t look away, and I have been refreshing my Twitter app frantically for a glimmer of hope.

A retweet sends it my way.


Another retweet brings a smile to my face.

It has felt so horrible and hopeless for the last months, which have felt like decades.

But, this is hope.



I switch over to Facebook, inundated with increasing possibilities. I scroll by a post from the Southern Poverty Law Center.


Just wow.


A quick shift back to Twitter as tweets scroll by in an endless sea of excitement. One after another, excitement rolls through, excitement and hope.


I consider all the people who consume Fox News like a sponge, soaking in an alternative reality. People who I once respected. People who I used to look up to.

I continue to scroll until I cross someone spouting bigotry.

Andrew T. Walker.

His words enshrined in digital stone.

“Christian parents, the nation’s first transgender elected official enters American history tonight. What are you doing to prepare your children for this new world?”

I hear these words as if uttered by a parent.

My scrolling continues as I stumble upon a reply to Mr. Walker.

“Christian parent here. We’re celebrating. We’re preparing our so to embrace difference, not fear or discriminate against it.”


The gif of applause that follows is perfection.

I can’t spend all night on Twitter and decide to do something about the laundry situation.

After a few minutes, The iPad screen is illuminated again.


One last look before I move to some other distraction.




Poem Version of What I Want to Write

Your Facebook posts are really beginning to piss me off.

I mean seriously.

First, you don’t even follow sports and the NFL protests bother you?

Aside from the fact that your white privilege is showing (again),

Why do you even care?

Why is that the thing that upsets you?

I don’t get it.

Because, the 21st transperson has been murdered so far this year,

And, yet, you say nothing.

How dare you rage at the NFL protest.

Men and women have fought and died for their right to protest.

For their right to take a knee,

For the police brutality,

For the racism inherent in a broken system,

For the lives lost due to hate,

For the injustice.


And second, you are retweeting organizations who support him,

Who are actively trying to take health care from children,

Who are trying to make it so that a restaurant can turn me away,

Who are going to stand by and let the gun violence carnage continue.

Some of those people you retweet, believe I am “Satan’s plan”,

Simply for me being me.

And you retweet their thoughts, mocking transpeople, mocking me.

And, it just sucks.

And, it hurts because I thought you had my back.

I thought I could count on you.


And, third, when you text me,

Text me and pretend that everything is alright,

Like everything is okay,

I can promise you, it is not.

I Went To A Concert And All I Got Was This Lousy Blog Post . . . Also Condoms

Before seeing Against Me in concert, my concert experience was fairly limited, which may have explained a lot.

For instance, my attire, while probably upsetting to some, did not necessarily fit in with the punk rock crowd. Solar system funky socks. Black plaid Converse low-tops. Black skinny jeans. Human Rights Campaign #Resist t-shirt. Purple unbuttoned short-sleeve shirt.

While this was definitely my kind of look, it did not blend into a crowd with gravestones on their skirts and enough fishnets to stock a bait and tackle shack.

Originally, when I saw a post about the concert on Facebook, I hadn’t planned to go. While I had enjoyed the few songs from the band I had heard and had listen to a WTF with Marc Maron episode featuring the lead singer Laura Grace Jane discussing her music and transition, a podcast listened to with my ex as we drove back to New Mexico after coming out to my parents and brother, a concert still was not my usual scene.

But, on Monday, the night before the concert, still mulling over whether or not I might go, a friend texted me a screenshot of her phone showing me that she was listening to their album Transgender Dysphoria Blues and letting me know she and her daughter would be attending the concert and to check them out.

A few brief exchanges later, filled with self-deprecating responses, I decided to go and purchased my ticket.

While I say I have limited experiences with concerts, that is only true if referring to ticket-requiring concerts. Because, much of my childhood was filled with summer evening at Tulsa’s Utica Square where I and my mom and brother would split Taco Bell, sushi, and/or a flourless chocolate cake from the nearby bakery as various cover bands played through the hits of the 70s, 80s, and those of Jimmy Buffet. While wasting away again on the blanket covered parking lot and listening to live music does qualify as a concert experience, I don’t necessarily think of those nights as a real concert experience. Nor do I consider a high school garage band playing at prom when I attended my freshman year, a real concert experience.

I am also choosing to ignore a few country and western concerts because a) I was dragged mentally kicking and screaming and b) that would mean that I see country and western as actual music.

For real concert experiences, I have only a Beach Boys tribute band, The Format, Electric Six, and fun.

When The Beach Boys tribute concert in my childhood was, I couldn’t say, but I remember hitting a giant beach ball back and forth on the blue and white metal stadium seating at the now defunct Drillers stadium, near the Tulsa fairgrounds.

The Format was an opening band for Guster at the Lloyd Noble Center in Norman. I’d never heard of Guster before, but I really liked the song “Time Bomb” from The Format and took this as an opportunity to go to a concert of my choosing. After an opening act by comedian Demetri Martin, The Format launched into their hits, and it was then that I realized how weird concerts are as the audience sang along with each and every tune played. My date and I did not stay for Guster, and I still don’t even know what a Guster song sounds like.

Electric Six followed a few years later with fun. following after that.

Seeing as how my real concert experiences have been limited, I was not sure if being handed a condom when walking into the venue was a concert norm.

And as the opening bands for Against Me played, I texted my friend my concert thoughts as I waited for her to arrive.

8:22 PM – I am here. What have I gotten myself into?

8:23 PM – Concerts are weird.

8:29 PM – Based on lyrics, I think the last song was “You’re Always High”, but if I had to guess it was “UR ALWAYS HIGH”.

8:33 PM – Do you usually receive condoms at a concert? Just asking. I mean I know the answer, but asking for a friend.

8:35 PM – This is not my element. My element is binging Star Trek.

8:57 PM – Why was the lead singer crawling on the stage? Missing contact?

9:05 PM – The crowd here is very different than at a Beach Boys tribute concert. Just saying.

9:21 PM – The intro to this song reminds me the 80s, but I bet we are about to get to some screaminess.

9:30 PM – The woman who lost her contact not only sings but guitars and drums. Quite talented.

9:31 PM – Openers have finished. I assume. I think that is how openers work.

As Against Me began and an unfamiliar song blared throughout the theater, I felt a lot of things. Things about previous concerts, about being transgender, and about what the music being played meant to the various concert goers.

I leaned against the black chain length fence and listened as the concert went on into the night.

Fear and Loathing on Twitter, Part 2: The Hypocrisies of the Old Party

Well, now with those opening Twitter thoughts out of the way, it’s time to cruz on over to talk about porn.

Here’s the thing.

I am not going to bash Ted Cruz for liking porn on Twitter.

But, really, who watches porn on Twitter?

Before Cruz’s “like”, I didn’t even know there was porn on Twitter.

Now, unfortunately, I know two things I didn’t need to know, 1) there is porn on Twitter and 2) someone with access to Ted Cruz’s Twitter account “liked” it.

Perhaps sometime I will delve into my views of Republicans, in general, but for now, let’s just stick with Senator Cruz.

Because, I have very specific feelings regarding this individual.

Days before I came out to my family, I disappointed my father by refusing to attend a Ted Cruz for President rally being held nearby.

I had no intention of attending this rally. There was not a single platform of his that I agreed with, and I feared that if Cruz verbally attacked LGBT people, as he was wont to do, it was unlikely that I would have been able to control myself. But aside from that, I did not want to be associated with attending a Ted Cruz rally, and I found it deeply distressing that my father was so excited to be on the Ted train.

I slept in on the morning of the rally. When I did get out of bed, I found that information regarding the rally had been slid under my door. This act would prompt me to spend the next hour or so browsing the internet to remind myself of all the hateful rhetoric the senator had spread and to better understand his platform.

I remember only feeling a mix of sadness and disappointment.

There’s a lot of that those days leading up to and after that I wish I wrote down more of in the immediate aftermath of those days. Because even though I wrote a lot of notes about those days then, I still find myself forgetting some of the nuances to my memories.

When my brother, grandfather, and father return from the Ted Cruz Rally, my brother comments about how surprised he is that my grandfather was not as much of a diehard supporter as he had thought. But, I can’t remember when that conversation took place or where.

When on Christmas night, out on the porch, my grandfather and father and uncle begin to joke about Caitlyn Jenner’s transition. I abruptly leave my whiskey sour behind, fight back tears, and slide down the wall to the floor as my ex-fiancée texts words of encouragement that it won’t be as bad as I am afraid it will. But, I can’t remember how the conversation on the patio started or what happened after I left the bathroom.

But, I can tell that I am not ready to write about all of that, my coming out and the family sit down that followed, not yet, because just drifting into nearby memories has almost completely soured my day and evening.

Yet, those memories only grapple at the surface of Ted Cruz, a staunch supporter of the hate group, the Family Research Council and about as bad as it gets when it comes to LGBT rights and equality.

And, now, to his porn “like”.

With a reminder that Ted Cruz has fought against the sale of sex toys and believes solely in the Biblical laws of marriage and masturbation, whatever that means, that Ted Cruz “liked” porn.

Which to me, is about as hypocritical as being told all your life about the vileness of pornography, only to find that parent’s porn stash.

That’s how I equate it.

As hypocritical as the many Republican politicians with anti-LGBT agendas that as truth comes to the surface only reveals their own homosexuality.

And, here’s the thing, if you “like” a post on accident, you simply “unlike” and go about your merry way.

And, porn does not just show up on your Twitter feed for no reason.

It was searched for.

That is how Twitter works.

So, I have to ask.

Why can’t politicians just be honest?

Why can’t people just tell the truth?

It ain’t easy.

But, it is freeing.

And, being honest about yourself to others, reveals as many truths about them as it does about you.


2016: Republican Facts – Ted Cruz: Not a Fan of Pride Parades

Southern Poverty Law Center on The Family Research Council

Ted Cruz Talks About Twitter Porn Incident And Sex Toys

19 Republican Politicians Brought Down By Big Gay Sex Scandals