At one point in the 1980s, Ms. Parker gave Ms. Frye a ride to a conference. During the drive, Ms. Frye confided that she sorely missed playing sports, and that no women's team would let her join.Ms. Parker, who coached a lesbian softball team, looked over at the strapping, 5-foot-10 woman beside her and thought, "I really need a power hitter.""I got back to her later and said, excuse the pun, 'I'm willing to go to bat for you,' " Ms. Parker said.Ms. Frye, who had watched admiringly as the transgender tennis player Renée Richards won the right to compete as a woman in the United States Open in 1977, became the first transgender woman in Houston's lesbian softball league. She and her wife, who were socially isolated, found themselves welcomed into a community.
Ms. Frye never opted for full gender-reassignment surgery. Ahead of her time, she firmly believed that surgery did not "complete" a gender change and should not be imposed on transgender people to justify a legal gender change on identification documents.
"The public has a deep fear of trans people in bathrooms, and specifically of penises in girls' rooms," said Chase Strangio, a transgender lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union's LGBT & AIDS Project.
On certain days in July and August, simply walking down a New York City block means being assaulted by smells: garbage, sweat, cigarettes, food carts and the hard-to-classify odors that come blasting on waves of hot air out of subway grates and building vents. How, we wondered, would a true expert describe the scents of summer in the city?One notoriously smelly block of Broome Street on the Lower East Side stopped them in their tracks. Ms. Barel at first said it smelled like wet dog. “Barnyard,” Ms. Lepeltier said, adding that she thought it might emanate from a poultry distributor in the neighborhood. As proof she pointed to some fuzz caught in a subway grate, which she thought might be feathers.The tour started in Chinatown, where the two women lingered over bins of dried fish. “It smells like what you give to birds, when you go to Petco,” Ms. Barel remarked.On Mott Street, they gagged at garbage smells and what Ms. Lepeltier pronounced was an odor that came from a rat.They stopped outside the Wyndham Garden Hotel, on Hester and Bowery, brought up short by a sweet smell."It’s floor cleaner, but with a very fruity smell," Ms. Barel said. "Very artificial, cheap."On a dank-smelling corner, Ms. Lepeltier said she detected fungus coming out of an air-conditioning unit.As the women climbed up to the High Line, another woman descended on the other side of the stairs carrying garbage bags, presumably filled with cans and bottles from restaurants, hung from the ends of a long stick that rested on her shoulder.“Warm beer,” Ms. Lepeltier remarked as she passed by. “You know, when you party too much, and you forget to clean up?”
Gun-related violent crime continues to drop in Virginia as the sales of firearms continue to soar, a pattern that one local criminologist finds interesting “given the current rhetoric about strengthening gun laws.”
Major gun crime collectively dropped for a fourth consecutive year statewide, while firearms sales climbed to a new record in 2012 with 490,119 guns purchased in 444,844 transactions — a 16 percent rise over 2011, according to federally licensed gun dealer sales estimates obtained by the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
The proliferation of guns occurred as the total number of major reported crimes committed with all types of firearms in Virginia dropped 5 percent, from 4,618 offenses in 2011 to 4,378 last year, according to Virginia State Police data.
Looking back over seven years, total firearm sales in Virginia have risen a staggering 101 percent from 2006 to 2012, while gun-related crime has dropped 28 percent during that period.
“This appears to be additional evidence that more guns don’t necessarily lead to more crime,” said Thomas R. Baker, an assistant professor at Virginia Commonwealth University’s L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs who specializes in research methods and criminology theory.
So what happens to these women when faced with the scarcity of targets? Do they poach from each other?