Quite what Stuart the barman thought when I first walked into brandies in my bunny girl costume four years ago I know not, but I loved it. I loved the reactions people gave, the surprise people gave. It was the first time I’d worn feminine clothing ‘out’ properly, and from that moment on I was addicted.
While I love the feeling of the clothes themselves, I also love the sense of nonconformity it gives me. That frisson of excitement one gets when one causes controversy. I suppose this stems in large part from the fact that I have cp. Like the Spanish inquisition, nobody expects to see a cripple in a fairy costume or full ball gown, at least not a mail one. for me, it draws attention to my subjectivity, my uniqueness.
We are all unique, the one fact which paradoxically unites us all. But there’s something about having a disability which makes one stand out that bit more. In a way this causes a problem for how can we achieve equality if we stand out? This is why I have been critical of nonconformity based on disability in the past. Yet recently I have began to think that this is not the problem at all, but the very solution. By drawing attention to our uniqueness we draw attention to the fact that we are all unique and therefore all the same. How one does this I now think does not matter, as long as one is ‘out there’ stirring shit up, turning heads and making people talk. Some people do this by deliberately donning disability paraphernalia – harnesses, helmets etc – while others are less overtly focussed on disability in their nonconformism; others show their indeviduality by dying their hair pink. I just dress up in outlandish outfits. Unlike the sentiments I expressed here, there is no real difference between the various methods. What matters is that one is out there, having fun, expressing themselves in whichever way they like.