Editor's letter: ISSUE 03 NEW YORK

I’m lying face-up on a massage table in a small spa room while a trans girlie inserts electrically charged wires into my face. She inspects my pores through an LED-lit magnifying glass so bright that I’m forced to close my eyes and listen to the soft ambient rock playing in the background. 

Before my session, I ran into my friend and sister Lexi, who actually introduced me to Rachika, the doll electrologist. Funnily, we all lived in New York between 2010 and 2021, and I had actually met Rachika in New York through a mutual friend. Through the act of some God (Trans), our paths crossed together at Relax Spa in Glendale. Three dolls bound not just by identity but through the joy of taking care of each other. This T4T feels correct.  

A day earlier, I saw a post on Instagram about “10 Inspiring Trans Women to Keep On Your Radar”. Most of the girls on that list were ones we’ve known or heard about before, with a few exceptions of more recent dollebrities. 

How is the world supposed to know us when all they hear about are the same ten or so trans women all the time? Journalism and media have devolved from a respectable, unbiased social reportage profession to a gluttonous industry addicted to clickbait and VC checks. Unsurprisingly, media publications are forced to chase the most clickable names in the most clickable article type, a listicle. 

Which brings me to The Girls Book issue 03 NEW YORK. This issue is a love letter to one of my favorite cities and my sisters, who are thriving out there. Sure, we’ve heard about Hunter Schaefer,  MJ Rodriguez, and Gigi Gorgeous, but what about Yên Nguyen, Ohni Lisle, or MTHR TRSA? These girls are more than a rashly crafted TDoV article; they are funny and intelligent and creative and talented. We get deep and ask them about their bodega order (hint: it’s not a ham & cheese on a roll with an “orange drink”). We also asked them about their art, how they find community, and what train line they would be. 

Amidst the chaos of living as a trans girl in America, these girls remind me that many things can be true at once. We can be at the intersection of global collapse, imminent war, and unemployment and still find time to kiki and have a good time. We can know about Lia Thomas and the trans girl working at Starbucks in Midtown. The struggle and the hustle and the rest and self-care all exist simultaneously. We’re all making it through one day at a time, and this sisterhood keeps me going. 

“I am cu*t. I am cu*t,” I repeat the mantra in my head whenever I feel the micropuncture in my hair follicle. Immediately after, the machine cries, “Beep beep!” and sends an electrical zap into my skin. Singe! A quick pin-prick and the pain subsides just as quickly, leaving behind a hot, inflamed imprint. Beauty is pain and also joy. 

After frying my face for an hour, I leave feeling euphoric. At that moment, I realize that electrolysis is just like bottoming–a little pain at first penetration, followed by deep #gendereuphoria.

Well, I hope y’all enjoy this issue. Give these dolls their flowers!! 


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