the aggressives by daniel peddle

i remember reading about this film catching up on recent editions of vibe (just before it died, though i saw the newly resurrected edition last week on a news stand) at the evelyn gregory branch last fall. i was happy to find it last night at the yorkville branch, just before my senior citizen’s playreading group (we’re reading essential self defense by adam rapp, a great modern play that incorporates body suits, bad plumbing, easter eggs, original karaoke, and shirley temples thus far). i have to shout out our leader, who saw the title of the book i’m reading and did a double take because she thought it was a sex manual, “not that she needs one”. i love it. anyway, back to this doc, which reminds me of still black, though less stylized and a bit abrupt ending. however, it’s a good exploration into the lives of butch and femme aggressives and their lives, jobs, and loves. the diversity in preferences and flexibility is more assuring than the usually rigid rules of (white-yea, i said it) butch dykes/trans men, and it’s nice to see vulnerability in trans folk of colour. from ricky lake to the army to modeling for phat farm (kisha’s head shot appears on the same board as charli baltimore and mc lyte) to prison and the balls, the characters are sketched by the commentary not only that they provide, but also that of their lovers, mothers, and children/fathers who contribute to the story more by their mystery. flo’s girl is my new s/hero, as i’ve always said that black women who date asian men are the hardest, because of the opposition that they encounter from all angles, but a black woman who chooses to date an asian woman who presents her gender as butch is extra hard. for reals.

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