Spotted by my boss amongst the tattered tank tops, open-toed sandals and the stale body odour at the Harwell Amatuer Radio Rally the other day: three of the most unconvincing transvestites you'll ever see. Bloke in blonde wig, Laura Ashley frock and size twelve heels going "Naah mate, you'll be wanting a capacitor in series there and an induction loop or else you're buggered." The other two stomped around - quite separately from Debbie Harry's butch uncle - like rugby players in drag, pausing only to scratch their bollocks and to challenge entranced passers-by to a bout of arm wrestling.*
In my civil service days, where staff turnover was so high they had revolving doors installed, they'd take just about anybody on**. One guy would turn up for work in a scruffy business suit, disappear into the ladies' toilets at about quarter to five, and reappear as "Elizabeth-Jane"*** in a frock, high heels, bad wig and far too much make-up. S/He'd then cycle around Reading Town Centre on a girly bike with a basket on the front. He got the sack - not for the crossdressing, but for the fact that he'd never use the gents' toilet for his dressing-up, and for using the girls' 'special bin' as an ashtray.
Intrigued, we looked up "Bad Transvestites" on the internet, only for Google to take us to a skiing resort in Austria that is bidding for a forthcoming winter Olympics. Disappointingly, "unconvincing transvestites" provided little crossdressing joy either, so it appears there is a gap in the market just waiting to be exploited. Mullets, bad wigs and chavs have all been outed. Ladyboys, it's your turn now. If those "From He to She" adverts they have in the tabloid press are anything to go by, there's plenty out there.
So, our advice to you is simple: your female colleague with the five o'clock shadow and the tattoos may not be all she seems. Especialy if she insists you call her Brandi-Jayde-Kylie. Or Brian to his mum.
* This observation may not be 100 per cent accurate.
** Like me
*** It's a measure of gender confusion that they always seem to have double-barrelled names. The truly committed have three.