Brian Macmaster is a journalist licking the wounds of a divorce in Paris where he hopes to recapture the flame of his writing passion. One night in the bar of the Hotel Pavillon, where he has rented a room on a monthly rate, he meets two women, Anna Maria Schiavetti and her friend, Rafaela Evangelista de Vargas.
Macmaster is immediately attracted to the newcomer. But there is a problem: she’s transgender.
Despite this, Macmaster finds himself falling for her and this leads him into a spider’s-web of intrigue, deception and extortion, finally culminating in a political scandal that overthrows the French government and also lands him in prison. This is a sexy, powerful, relentlessly paced novel that is not only a page-turner but explores one of the most fascinating subjects, not to mention taboos, of contemporary culture.
On the 25th of February, we went to Malolos, the capital of Bulacan, to see a ladyboy parade; but it never appeared. Ladyboy levels of disorganisation are, of course, legendary, in addition to which, they were probably working on Filipino time, which makes ‘manana’ sound urgent. Still, a couple of nice cold Red Horses and some good pictures.
All Pix: Rod Fleming
Street photography, long established as an art and a specialist form of photojournalism, requires very similar techniques to those needed to photograph field sports, notably football (soccer, not that American nonsense). You need sharp reactions, complete confidence in technique and total reliance on reflex. As soon as you see an image, it’s gone, so you just have to go with it.
Markets everywhere are wonderful for this sort of thing. They’re very colourful and people are concentrating on selling, not watching the photographer. I was using a DSLR for most of these, with no issues. As usual with digital, you have to watch the exposure. I find using the old tranny technique of underexposing by 2/3 of a stop is useful in holding highlight detail.
Gallery 1: Malolos
Gallery 2: Malolos Palenke
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An action-packed tale of love and life, humour and romance, played out by an unforgettable cast of characters with genuine Scots voices, Poaching the River will make you laugh and cry out loud.
It’s a quiet afternoon in Auchpinkie, a tiny fishing village on the east coast of Scotland, and in her Corner Shop, Mae and her cronies are setting the world to rights.
Suddenly a furniture van draws up outside one of the houses along the street. A beautiful young woman is moving into Etta Swankie’s old house. But no-it can’t be-that’s Rae, Etta’s daughter, and Etta always swore she’d disinherit her!
Over the next few days the action races to its riotous climax, as Big Sye, Rae’s cousin, poaches the River Pinkie in a daring adventure, the village public convenience is destroyed by a freak explosion, and the parish minister is baffled by the sudden religious conversion of two formerly heathenish young lads.
Behind it all a spider’s web of intrigue is woven, as the villagers conspire to get Big Sye and Rae together. But there are things going on that none of them ken, and secrets that only Rae’s old friend Izzie knows…
Here’s a wee Youtube video. Apparently Check In has residential rooms and a restaurant so you could just fly to BKK, take a taxi to Sukhumvit and then just have a different girl on your knee every night. Or two. Or three…Never need to set foot outside the door lol
The ‘wet market’ or palenke in Pasig City is really huge and spectacular. You can buy anything there, believe me. it’s a fun place too, literally open 24/7/365. Keep your wallet in your pocket and you’ll have no problems.
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This was my fifth visit to the Philippines and again, I arrived before Christmas, on the 8th of December. I had rented an apartment in Plaridel, Bulacan, which was to be my base for the next four months.
Plaridel is a market and manufacturing town about 30 miles north of Manila. In 2015 it had a population of 107,000. It has an airport.
I’ll let the pictures and captions speak for themselves in this photo diary of the trip. This section goes from my arrival up to New Year. I’ll do another section for the latter part.
To view the gallery, please click the ‘Read More’ link below
Autogynephilia is a narcissistic, sexualised self-reward syndrome. It is a non-homosexual man’s compulsive desire to be, or appear to be, a woman. It is satisfied by achieving this, more or less. Although there are other rewards, the most powerful one is by having sex as a woman.
That is to say, by being penetrated, usually anally.
Because it is self-reinforcing, the more often the satisfaction is achieved, the stronger it gets. It is narcissistic because it is focussed on the male self in role as a woman. Because sexualised reward is so strong, autogynephilia is extremely powerful and quickly becomes an obsession. Sex as a woman can turbo-charge it.
I have taken the liberty of republishing in full the pages of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fifth Edition (APA DSM-V) which are relevant to Gender Dysphoria.
If the APA objects, I’ll take it down, but I publish this in good faith, without alteration or comment, as a public information service. I will write another post commenting. I’ll also put a link to this and to the DSM itself (which is downloadable in full as a .pdf) on my Links page.
I strongly advise anyone interested in the field of transsexualism, transvestism, gender dysphoria and related topics to thoroughly study the document below.
Note: The APA now has a programme of rolling revision to its online materials, so the specific wordings may change. This was the state as downloaded in February 2018. As a result, this is only a guide and in all cases of clinical interaction, the current version on the APA website (see link below) should be referred to.
I am not ashamed to say that I love the Philippines. Nowhere else that I have ever visited manages to capture so much of humanity’s amazing variety. It’s an incredible place and I am so lucky to have found it. This is a selection of pictures from that trip. I’ll let them speak for themselves.
As always, please feel free to download and use the images for your personal, non-commercial projects. Please do not remove either the visual copyright notice in the bottom right corner or the embedded details in the EXIF data. If they are useful to you, please leave a donation by clicking the big yellow button.
Licensing for commercial projects, as well as larger images for print or other use, are available, Please contact me using the Contact Form Below.
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Arbroath January 1972 . I was living in the house at 9 East Grimsby. My Dad had died the previous year and I was still struggling with it. But I had a few things going for me: music, a camera and my books. It wasn’t a lot but it helped.
Russ Black, the art teacher at school encouraged me to use its darkroom. I had lost my own a couple of years before when we moved house. This is one of the earliest rolls I still have from then.
The camera was a Leica Model III fitted with a Ross Xtralux 50mm f2, an excellent lens. I used the name ‘Xtralux’ for a band some years later, in Exeter. Film was Ilford FP3.