Mycroft Masada is a nonbinary trans and queer Jewish leader with 30 years of experience who moved to Gaithersburg, Maryland (Montgomery County near Washington DC) from their lifelong home of Boston in 2014. A TransEpiscopal Steering Committee member and former Congregation Am Tikva board member, Mycroft is particularly called to pursue LGBTQ+ and fat justice, and is an advocate, organizer, consultant, educator, trainer, writer and artist. They are married to Julia McCrossin, the mas(s)culine fatshion blogger, and with her they co-parent a dogter. Their central online home is

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Friday, December 23, 2011

Lowell Sun's anti-trans editorial -- faith community response

The Lowell (MA) Sun published an anti-trans editorial this week -- focusing on Chaz Bono and the Transgender Equal Rights Bill -- authored by Dan Phelps and titled "Christmas Carols -- With A Twist":

Here is the faith community's response, emailed to the Sun today.  Special thanks to the Transgender Equal Rights Coalition media team for all their help!

It was disappointing to read Dan Phelps’ recent column mocking our transgender parents, siblings, children, neighbors, and friends. It was even more heartwrenching to read it during this time of year, which is typically marked with a spirit of goodwill toward all.

Transgender people bear the burden of misunderstanding and marginalization. That is why so many people of faith -- including the 2008 Diocesan Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, the Right Reverend M. Thomas Shaw and more than 150 other faith leaders around the state -- supported passage of the Transgender Equal Rights Bill, which extends basic civil rights protections in housing, credit, schools, and employment to some of the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable residents.

It is up to all of us -- particularly during this holiday season -- to recognize the dignity and worth of all people, including transgender people. We should do this within our individual faith traditions as well as within the broader community. We are a stronger, more compassionate society when everyone is valued for who they are, and treated with dignity and respect.

Rev. Dr. Cameron Partridge
Interfaith Coalition for Transgender Equality, Episcopal Chaplain at Boston University

Marla Marcum and Rev. Leigh Dry
Co-Chairs, Reconciling Ministries Sub-Committee of the Committee on Church and Society of the United Methodist Church in New England

Idit Klein
Executive Director, Keshet

Mycroft Masada Holmes
Chair, Interfaith Coalition for Transgender Equality

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Trans & a patient at Fenway Health within the last 3 years?

I am, and so I got this email last Wednesday:

"Fenway Health is currently conducting a research study to learn about the best ways to ask patients about transgenderism and transgender identity on the Fenway Health registration form (sometimes called a patient intake form).  If you are transgender, 18 years or older, and have been a patient at Fenway Health in any department at any location (1340 Boylston Street, South End Associates, or Sidney Borum, Jr. Health Center) in the past three years, we invite you to take a brief survey. 

The survey will ask for your reactions to current and potential alternative transgenderism/transgender identity questions on the registration form.  It will take approximately 20 minutes to complete.  Your answers will be anonymous and will not be included or linked to your medical record.  Your doctor and care providers will not be given a copy of your answers.

You make take the survey online or on paper.  To take it online, follow this link to  For a paper copy, call 617-927-6348 and we will mail it to you for you to fill out and return by postage-paid mail to us.

The information that you provide will be important and the results of the study will guide possible changes at Fenway Health.  Please consider participating and/or sending this information along to a friend who might be interested.  For questions or more information, please call Aimee Van Wagenen at 617-927-6348."

Monday, December 12, 2011

Marilyn Wann's wannderful work

(‎Photos from the VoluptuArt site -- copyright © 2011 Ani Yaffa, LLC; all rights reserved.)

Need awesome fat-positive holiday gifts for yourself and others?

Marilyn Wann* writes: "I'm excited to announce that the 2012 FAT!SO? Dayplanner is now available exclusively from Voluptuart, Nomi Dekel's fat-positive shop! It's a year full of body-love holidays, quotes, art, survival info, and Ragen Chastain dancing and doing a belly bump with me (in flipbook format). Each one comes with a fat animal paperclip and surprise gifts. ($14 plus shipping.) Please check it out and tell your friends..."

Price: $14.00

Have a fabulous year! Double pages for each month and week. Lots of blank pages (lined and grid) and sturdy cover. Original art on a fat animal theme each month by Barry Deutsch, Jill Pinkwater, Les Toil, and more. Plus: a built-in flipbook of national dance champion Ragen Chastain, body-positive tips and resources, quotes from fat pride and Health At Every Size® leaders, games, and DIY projects. Your Dayplanner comes with a fat animal paperclip and surprise gifts. (Printed on 100% post-consumer paper by worker-owned collective.)

Artist: Marilyn Wann and contributors Dimensions: 4.25" x 6"

And don't forget to scroll down for more of Marilyn's merch, like Fat!So? t-shirts and Yay! Scales.

(*More about Marilyn: "I'm a fat rights activist. I want to end weight-based prejudice and discrimination, for the good of people of all sizes and for the good of society. I aim to celebrate all kinds of diversity, including weight diversity. Since the medical establishment is a major promoter of prejudice and discrimination against fat people, I find the Health At Every Size approach necessary for health, happiness, and human rights.

In the mid-90s, I created a print 'zine called FAT!SO? and then wrote the FAT!SO? book. I'm proud to have been part of successful lobbying that resulted in San Francisco adding height and weight to its anti-discrimination laws in 2000. I have performed with fat activist groups like the Bod Squad cheerleaders, Big Moves dance, and the Padded Lilies synchro swimmers.

I have given hundreds of weight diversity talks in all kinds of settings, in the US and internationally. I also comment on weight-related topics in the media."

Also, have you seen that Marilyn has been doing a blog for the SF Weekly's website (SF as in San Francisco)? She's done 9 pieces so far.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Cartoonist Barry Deutsch & his toons re: fat, LGBT people, & much more

I wanted to point out the great work of cartoonist Barry Deutsch, especially his awesome political cartoons -- which include fat- and LGBT-positive ( ones.

I first noticed him because of his fat-positive cartoon last February -- "Top Ten Reasons Discrimination Against Fat People Is Perfectly Okay":


I was reminded to blog about him by his toon last month -- "When I Get Thin...":

Here are his sites:

Monday, December 5, 2011

LGBTQ Kabbalat Shabbat Service & Potluck - Cambridge MA - THIS FRIDAY

THIS FRIDAY, December 9th, my shul Congregation Am Tikva is co-hosting a Celebrate LGBTQ Kabbalat Shabbat Service & Potluck with our friends Congregation Eitz Chayim of Cambridge, at their home in Central Square. I've had a good experience of Eitz Chayim -- I've done a transgender workshop there through Keshet, they've hosted Keshet's "Trew Tales" event (transgender Jewish, or 'Trewish', open mic), and they've supported the Boston Transgender Day of Remembrance, especially by providing food for its reception.

Congregation Eitz Chayim
7:00PM - 10:00PM

Celebrate LGBTQ Kabbalat Shabbat and Potluck

Cost: FREE - Registration not required.
December 09, 2011—07:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Congregation Eitz Chayim, 136 Magazine Street,
Cambridge, MA 02139

Congregation Eitz Chayim celebrates the LGBTQ community December 9, 2011. Join us for a joyful lay-lead participatory Kabbalat Shabbat service at 7pm, which will include readings from GLBTQ liturgy and writers. After the oneg at 8pm we will have a fabulous potluck tisch.* Bring food (veggie/dairy), a bottle of wine, a story, a song, a dvar, or a poem to share, or helping hands to arrange the tables. As we head into winter, help us create a really warm spot in Cambridge!

Our special guests for the evening include members of GLBT shul Congregation Am Tikva in Brookline Our tisch will be led by guest facilitator Yaakov Reef from TBS.

We will do a short text study during the service, pondering what it was like for Dina to go out into the land, into an unfamiliar and hostile territory. There will be ample time at the tisch to dig deeper into Dina’s story or any part of Parashat Vayishlach (Genesis 32:4 - 36:43), and to hear the stories you bring to the table.

RSVPs are greatly appreciated, in order for us to plan the food, but are not required. If you can bring food, savory rather than dessert would be best. Contact Penina Weinberg at to RSVP or for more information.

Eitz Chayim is an egalitarian, inclusive, non-denominational synagogue whose members are of all ages and family configurations, and who come from a wide range of religious, ethnic, class, family, and cultural backgrounds. We welcome YOU to celebrate Shabbat with us.

A parking consideration is in effect on Friday nights. Park within a couple blocks of Eitz Chayim and put a note on your dashboard that you are attending services.

"The violets in the mountains have broken the rocks." --Tennessee Williams, Camino Real

*A tisch is literally a table – but in the Hasidic world it’s much more than that! Come prepared to eat, sing, bang on the table, tell stories, teach, and learn a little, maybe drink!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

My partner Julia McCrossin now has a blog too!

...and in related news -- my flabulous partner (Julia McCrossin, Fat Studies scholar) has finally given in to her fans and begun her own blog! Yay!

She's named it "Ponderous Boundaries", and herself Chubmudgeon -- "Scholar in (self-imposed) exile. Queer Sphere. Battle-ax and Bulldozer in equal measure. Panda-loving dragons are my weakness." The profile photo is her handsome self during a visit to Ireland some years ago (drinking a Coke).

I am so glad that she is finally blogging. And doing so in her awesome and unique style. Every time I start to wonder if she can become any more amazing and wonderful a person or partner...she does!

Popular & American Culture Associations conference (2012) - Fat Studies area - update!

My partner Julia McCrossin co-chairs the Fat Studies area of the Popular & American Culture Associations with Lesleigh Owen. Here's their CFP (call for papers) for next year's national conference (April 2012, Boston -- Julia should be living here with me by then, and I plan to attend the con for the first time; I also want to present, but I probably won't have time to create a proposal).

Please note that the submission deadline has been extended a week -- from Thursday December 15th to Thursday December 22nd!

PCA/ACA Fat Studies 2012 Call for Papers

Fat Studies is becoming an interdisciplinary, cross-disciplinary field of study that confronts and critiques cultural constraints against notions of “fatness” and “the fat body”; explores fat bodies as they live in, are shaped by, and remake the world; and creates paradigms for the development of fat acceptance or celebration within mass culture. Fat Studies uses body size as the starting part for a wide-ranging theorization and explication of how societies and cultures, past and present, have conceptualized all bodies and the political/cultural meanings ascribed to every body. Fat Studies reminds us that all bodies are inscribed with the fears and hopes of the particular culture they reside in, and these emotions often are mislabeled as objective “facts” of health and biology. More importantly, perhaps, Fat Studies insists on the recognition that fat identity can be as fundamental and world-shaping as other identity constructs analyzed within the academy and represented in media.

Proposals in the area of Fat Studies are being accepted for the 2012 PCA /ACA (Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association) National Conference in Boston, MA (April 11-14, 2011, meeting after, not before, Easter Sunday), at the Marriott Boston Copley Place. We welcome papers and performances from academics, researchers, intellectuals, activists, artists, and others, in any field of study, and at any stage in their career. We also welcome panels and roundtables on a variety of topics under the heading “Fat Studies.”

Topics may include but are not limited to:

- representations of fat people in literature, film, music, nonfiction, and the visual arts
- cross-cultural or global constructions of fatness and fat bodies
- cultural, historical, inter/intrapersonal, or philosophical meanings of fat and fat bodies
- the geography and lived experience of fatness and fat bodies
- portrayals of fat individuals and groups in news, media, magazines
- fatness as a social or political identity
- fat acceptance, activism, and/or pride movements and tactics
- approaches to fat and body image in philosophy, psychology, religion, sociology
- fat children in literature, media, and/or pedagogy
- fat as it intersects with race, ethnicity, class, religion, ability, gender, and/or sexuality
- history and/or critique of diet books and scams
- functions of fatphobia or fat oppression in economic and political systems

By THURSDAY DECEMBER 22nd (recently extended from Thursday December 15th) 2011, please send an abstract of 100 - 250 words or a completed
paper to Fat Studies Area Co-Chairs Julia McCrossin (
and Lesleigh Owen (

Please include your complete contact information and a CV and/or 50 word bio, along with anticipated A/V needs. All submissions are welcome, but please use the information above to ensure your paper fits within the academic and political scopes of Fat Studies. Please also be mindful that Fat Studies is a political project and not merely an umbrella term for all discussions of larger bodies. Also, we encourage submitters to rethink using words like “obesity” and “overweight” in their presentations unless they are used ironically, within quotes, or accompanied by a political analysis.

Presenters must become members of the Popular Culture Association. Find more information on the conference and organization at