Lots is happening in my life right now - I seem to be getting back into doing some political work at precisely the moment when I think I know where to go both with the fic and the novel, plus I have new people to spend time with and old people back in my life. One of the most important things seems to be that I am coming to terms with internalized transphobia I thought I had finished dealing with long ago. Probably more discussion of this will ensue over the next weeks, possibly in filtered friends' posts...
One of the best things in a long life is getting to sit by the stream and watch the corpse of your enemy float by; even better is when they float past time and time again.
In my twenties, two of my best friends were John and Katherine - we hung out a lot as post-graduates and then again in London, where we lived round the corner from each other for a couple of years in Camden and John and I were both rising young civil servants. They were rich liberals with family money and were generous with food and wine; I was a bit in love with both of them. (Katherine had this interesting American ex called Bill, that she sometimes talked about, but that is another story.) To give but one example, it was in their living room that I first read 'The Sadeian Woman' which was crucial in my life because it was a book about female sexuality that I could identify with totally - I'd been shamed out of transition a couple of years earlier by feminist friends who asked, reasonably enough, how I could be sure. Carter gave me that sureness - in the novels as well, of course, but even more in that book. ( And later on I got to discuss this with Carter herself, also another story).
I talked about this with them in the months that preceded my decision to transition and they were supportive and friendly. Then, around the time I actually did transition, they decided to cut me out of their lives altogether. Katherine had decided that her feminism wouldn't let her know me any more and John decided to go along with this.
I would probably have broken with them in the course of the eighties of course, when John became a private secretary to various Tory chancellors and prospered mightily. Interesting that Katherine's principles never applied to her husband.
I saw her once at a feminist publishing party and we were frostily polite.
He became Permanent Secretary at the Home Office and got caught up in the Blunkett nanny scandal, and then the released foreign prisoners scandal, and then the failure to do the department's accounts scandal. So he retired and became deputy governor of the Bank of England, where his incompetence seems to have been a large part of the financial chaos of the last two weeks.
People who betray their friends will betray their principles and people who will do that get lazy and complacent and incompetent.
I am not angry - I don't think I ever was - but I miss the friends I ought to have had and feel chill hatred and amused contempt for the people they chose to become instead.
Not nearly as nice as I like to think I am then.