Pinkwashing and Other Birdcalls

Our associates now have the option of wearing pronouns on their aprons.
Every hour on the hour the cuckoo chimes.

The workers ignore her like the chirping POS machines and alarms.
The overseers attend meetings in dark rooms and play cis-written PowerPoints on gender and the importance of trans-inclusive language.
The boss who outsourced the slides sits in her office and prints out rainbow posters to hang on the grey lunchroom walls.
None of them have their pronouns on their aprons.
None of them read my tiny corporate pronoun pin with the company logo printed larger than the text.
None of them read the Sharpied on she/her just above my tits.

Our associates now have the option of wearing pronouns on their aprons.
Every hour on the hour the cuckoo chimes.

I use my voice. I advocate. I define. I explain. I simplify.
They thank my deadname. They ignore the training. They tune out the coocoo.
Then they forget and we start over.

Our associates now have the option of wearing pronouns on their aprons.
Every hour on the hour the cuckoo chimes.

I tire. I learn to swallow my words. I become lesser.
Less bothersome. Less of an angry trans woman. Less of myself. Just less.

Our associates now have the option of wearing pronouns on their aprons.
Every hour on the hour the cuckoo chimes.

I spend twenty minutes waiting for the single-stall washroom to clear. The woman inside talks loudly on her phone. She glares at me on her way out. You could have just used the MEN’s room.
My supervisor is mad that I messed up her break schedule. I apologize and use my old initials to sign into my workstation.
She directs a married couple to that GENTLEMAN on till six.
She is bright and talkative. He stares at my purple hair in silence.
Is River a boy’s name or a girl’s name? My son’s fiancé is a River too. I guess it can be a BOY’s name? I don’t judge. Are you sure it’s your name though?
I stare at the clock.
I scan her items and let the register bleep out her words.
The cuckoo and I wait patiently for them to leave.

Our associates now have the option of wearing pronouns on their aprons.
Every hour on the hour the cuckoo chimes.

On lunch, I ask my supervisor to use my pronouns. She gets angry. She storms off. This is all very hard on her. I need to be more understanding.
As a sign of comfort and solidarity, our forklift driver tells me that he wants to fuck his lesbian neighbours. So, you know, I get it MAN.
The poster next to the timesheets talks about gay men, lesbians, and TRANSGENDEREDS rioting at The Stonewall Inn way back in 1969.
The loudspeaker chirps on. In my head, I name the cuckoo Marsha.
She sings her heart out. They ignore her and she pecks at their fucking eyes. Her beak is made of brick. Her plumage is bright and floral.

Our associates now have the option of wearing pronouns on their aprons.
Every hour on the hour the cuckoo chimes.

One thought on “Pinkwashing and Other Birdcalls

  1. John Pengelly says:

    Wow, beautifully written! It gives a true sense of what you have to put up with. I’m sorry you have to put up with all the distressing behaviour. Robin and I made it to Kamloops this afternoon. We met up with Bethany and Dennis for a long dinner at a restaurant in town. Bethany says hi! We’re off to Prince George in the morning. ❤️

    Sent from my iPad

    >

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