Dina’s Diner 12/11/23

Dina’s Diner 12/11/23

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A beautiful smile.

I caught the tail end of a segment on the CBS Morning Show about ‘smiling lessons’ in Japan. I found an article about it on the Reuters news service site dated June 6, 2023. It was headlined Japanese Get Trained in ‘Hollywood’ Smiles as Masks Slowly Come Off.

According to the article, Keiko Kawano began holding training sessions for Japanese (mostly students) to learn how to smile after hiding their faces under Covid masks for years. In fact, the article points out, many Japanese still wear masks on a regular basis despite the vanishing Covid risk. As masks slowly come off and interaction with tourists and a wider public and job interviews for graduates blossom, the ability to smile well is important. “Kawano believes that culturally, Japanese people may be less inclined to smile than Westerners because of their sense of security as an island nation and as a unitary state.”

From the article: “Himawari Yoshida, 20, one of the students taking the class as part of her school’s courses to prepare them for the job market, says she needed to work on her smile. “I hadn’t used my facial muscles much during COVID so it’s good exercise,” she said.” Companies and government agencies also send people for lessons to improve their sales ability and client interactions.

As crossdressers, smiling or looking pleasant should be part of our personalities – as it should with most people in all circumstances. I noticed a long time ago, however, that photos posted by crossdressers rarely show them smiling. I think it has something to do with wanting to appear smolderingly sexy a la fashion models who rarely smile in their photos. What we see too much of are sullen faces of gurls who might be lovelier with at least a little twinkle across the lips.

Smiling – however delightful – also creates wrinkles, and facial movements that can crack makeup. Crossdressers can hardly afford to have more wrinkles and crinkled foundation even if it comes as a byproduct of smiling. A small coquettish smile on the lips can do the trick without overdoing it. You do know how to play the coquette, oui?


I’ve mentioned before that I am a great admirer of some of the local female news personalities in my area. This is a common point of interest for guys apparently. Reddit.com has several discussion groups dedicated to admiring (or perving) local and network newswomen.

News woman’s new eyes look.

When I came back home after a November vacation, I noticed that one of my local news anchors had glammed up her appearance during my absence. I was instantly amazed at her eye makeup. She had also added highlights to her dark hair but it was the eyes that made me really study her new look.

As you can see from this cropped photo, she has smoky dark shadow on the lids and extending to part of her brow. A splash of bright white shadow under the eyebrows adds light and ‘opens’ the eye area.. There appears to be a wide stripe of black liner on her lids near the lash line. And she is wearing longer false lashes.

I’m not using her name here because I just wanted to point out how a really good eye makeup job can make a huge difference even to someone accustomed to seeing the subject on a daily basis. It also makes the case for changing things up to create a new look if you have been doing the same thing for a very long time. I am guilty of this. So I adopted some of the features of the anchor’s new eye ‘do for my own look.

Crossdressers often struggle with the finer points of eye makeup. Physically, fellas often have less space between the browline and the lashes. So eyeshadow and liner gets lost as the lids retract right into the crease area. Applying eye makeup is time consuming and close work and is intimidating for newcomers or those who just don’t get enough practice. And I know many gurls simply throw their hands up when it comes to false eyelashes.

Cosmetics – especially for the eyes – is a difference-maker for appearance. It’s worth the effort and time to learn to be better or work on a new look. There are so many instructional videos on YouTube by other crossdressers, drag queens, and makeup influencers that can help. Open your eyes and step up your game.


I saw an article headlined Everything You Know About Corsets Is False. It appeared on a site called GetPocket.com. They reprinted an article from something called Collectors Weekly back in 2012. But the contents of the article – like corsets themselves – are timeless. So let’s continue.

It introduces the subject thusly: “The corset has a bad reputation. And unfairly so, according to Valerie Steele, director and chief curator of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, who says this undergarment of centuries past is not nearly as evil or confining as modern folks have come to believe.”

A corset enthusiast.

Ms. Steele dispels three main myths of corsets through the ages. One, women did not compress their waists as severely as some would have you believe. “Most people would reduce by a couple of inches. You can reduce it 4 inches or so, but most women were not going to be doing any more than that.” Second, Corseting did not cause misshapen internal organs or disease. “Corsets did not cause scoliosis, the crushing of the liver, cancer, or tuberculosis. It doesn’t mean that corsets were without any health problems, but it does mean that most modern people are wildly naive in believing the most absurd antiquated medical accusations about corsetry.” Third, that men did not force women into corseting themselves. “Women wore the corset because it made them feel attractive and properly dressed. ‘The corset was associated with high status and with respectability, indicating you’re not loose,’ Steele says. ‘Also, it enhances the sexually dimorphic curves of the female body.’”

Looking at some of the antique corsets on display in the article made me appreciate the art of the corsetiere especially given the artisanal nature of the materials and workmanship in the age before mass production. And corsets evolved over time. The Victorian corsets of the 19th century are different than the Edwardian corsets at the turn of the 20th century, which are different than the corsets of the Jazz Age just 20 years later. The article points out that figure training for women in the past was achieved through corsetry (or girdles later) whereas diet and exercise are the usual means by which modern women keep their shape. So the corset is a niche or purely fetish item nowadays.

I guess most crossdressers have had some form of corset in their closet. To be tied or zipped or buckled into a corset is to be reminded with every breath that you are wearing something feminine. If you attach stockings to a corset’s garters, it heightens that feeling. Which is the feeling we’re looking for, right, ladies?


A crossdressing Velma.

I was born a little too early to be a Scooby Doo fan. I didn’t really become aware of the popularity of the characters until the movie came out in 2002. I never saw the movie or the sequel and still don’t have any desire to watch it. However, the character of Velma Dinkley, played in the film by Linda Cardellini, has become something of a cosplay and crossplay phenomenon.

The other female character in the Scooby group is Daphne Blake, played in the film by Sarah Michelle Gellar. The interesting thing is that the Daphne character is classically prettier than the Velma character but Velma seems to be more popular by far. She has that pretty-nerd look and perhaps she seems more ‘attainable’ than the fashionable Daphne.

Photo sites online are filled with women cosplaying as Velma not to mention dressing as Velma for Halloween – or just for fun. There are true-to-detail Velmas, passable attempts at Velmas, and the inevitable ‘sexy’ Velmas to be found. And, of course, there are crossdressed Velmas.

Looking through photos online, it was sometimes hard to tell the crossdressed Velmas from the cis-Velmas. The character’s iconic bob with bangs hairstyle, orange turtleneck, and black framed glasses effectively disguises all but the most obvious gender differences for would-be Velmas. When I was at a Halloween bar party in October, I saw a Velma who I was pretty sure was a crossdressed version. It was – and the Velma-fication was so well done it was hard not to be attracted by all the imagined charms that make her so iconic.

When I was a kid (and even later) there was always a debate about preferring Betty or Veronica from the Archie comic books, Wilma Flintstone or Betty Rubble from The Flintstones cartoons, and Mary Ann or Ginger from Gilligan’s Island. But there seems to be a consensus that in the choice between Velma or Daphne in the Scooby Doo universe, it’s all Velma.


I came across an article that was posted on Pinterst.com. It was a photocopy of an old news article headlined The History of the Middle Finger. This doesn’t have anything to do with crossdressing directly but it’s always good to know these things.

According to the article, the origination of the middle finger as a gesture of anger or disdain goes all the way back to The Battle of Agincourt in 1415. The French announced that they would cut off the middle fingers of any captured English soldiers. In the days of bow and arrow warfare, losing the middle finger would make it impossible to draw the bowstring back, incapacitating any captured English soldiers’ ability as warriors or hunters afterwards.

The article notes, “Much to the bewilderment of the French, the English won a major upset and began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers at the defeated French.” The article points out that English bows were made of wood from the yew tree and the act of drawing the bowstring was known as “plucking the yew.” According to the article, while waving their middle fingers, the English soldiers would yell, “See, we can still pluck yew.” Although that sounds similar to the well-known profanity, it is not explained how it evolved to its present form. Maybe there’s another article about that somewhere.

By the way, other sources I found can trace using the middle finger as a rude gesture all the way back to the Romans. The saying “flipping the bird” for giving someone the finger has murkier origins. Some say it refers to the feathered fletchings on the arrows (which jibes with the Agincourt story).

If you are on the receiving end of a middle finger or if you are offering your own middle finger as silent commentary of disagreement, at least you know whence it came.

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Category: Transgender Fun & Entertainment


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