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July 27, 2014 11:21 AM   Subscribe


 
Aaaarggh. I read through that whole thing expecting a pay off. Am I missing something? It's still unsolved, or are there hidden pages of the thread?

Oops, on further edit, I found them. Damn iphone and failing eyesight.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:42 AM on July 27


Ok, that was cool. Mystery solved. I can go about my business, and with food for thought.

For Roberta, whom I imagine lived with some amount of torment and whom I hope found some kind of peace: .
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:52 AM on July 27 [3 favorites]


What an interesting bit of detective work! I love hearing (and reading) about obscure local mysteries like this. I wonder what R. would think to know that their story is now being shared with people all over the world. I hope that it would feel like a little bit of justice, to spread the word about what happened to them.

.

RIP, friend.
posted by cardinality at 12:36 PM on July 27 [2 favorites]


Of the four female ham radio people I've met, two were trans.

I don't know where to file that observation.
posted by Devonian at 1:28 PM on July 27 [4 favorites]


.
posted by Foosnark at 1:36 PM on July 27 [1 favorite]


Eponysterical that it was a poster with the username '48Willys' who finally provided the solution.
posted by Flashman at 1:41 PM on July 27 [1 favorite]


Wait. I still don't understand. Is this person still alive? I didn't catch the explanation for why there was only one date on the headstone.
posted by pravit at 2:24 PM on July 27



Wait. I still don't understand. Is this person still alive? I didn't catch the explanation for why there was only one date on the headstone.

The thread started in 2009, when the tombstone was first observed, evidently in place before Roberta's death. The thread then went dormant for five years until somebody bumped it, having found out that Roberta had subsequently died in 2010.
posted by anazgnos at 2:32 PM on July 27 [2 favorites]


Poor Roberta: .
posted by goo at 2:41 PM on July 27


What a sad story. The fragmentation just makes it that much more tragic.

And just because I don't want to register for an account there just to clarify: Law & Order regularly embellished and mashed up real cases just to add some extra drama, but unfortunately, that episode they're talking about really was based on David Reimer's case. He did have a twin, Brian, and the true story is even worse than the TV version.
posted by ernielundquist at 2:54 PM on July 27 [3 favorites]


Fascinating. Thanks.
posted by persona au gratin at 3:21 PM on July 27


According to the custom at the time she was surgically made into a female.

I believe this is still pretty common for intersex babies. We're not quite at the point where doctors will say, "congratulations, it's a healthy hermaphrodite" - unfortunately.
posted by iotic at 5:04 PM on July 27 [1 favorite]


The comments in that thread are a great insight into how urban legends get started.
posted by ostro at 5:10 PM on July 27


It was more common to make them female because "it's easier to dig a hole than build a pole" in the wonderful phrasing I read in an article about one of these cases.
posted by empath at 7:43 PM on July 27 [1 favorite]


Oddly enough, tonight's episode of Showtime's Masters of Sex, while mainly a bottle episode that takes place mostly in one room, had a side plot about this very thing. A child is born with ambiguous genitalia, and the "easier to dig a hole than build a pole" philosophy is what dictates what the parents (well, the father) decide to do about it. I found myself thinking back to this post more than once while watching.
posted by CommonSense at 12:15 AM on July 28


I lost my final shred of respect for Dr. Drew (I know, I know) when I heard him on Loveline yelling, blathering and chewing out the father of an intersexed child because the father refused to have any gender assignment surgery until the child was old enough to make their own decision.

Dr. Drew's reasoning: That child will be traumatized by not knowing which bathroom to go to and will be teased in the locker room.

Like, I don't know, maybe it's less invasive to teach some children to not be bigoted bullies than it is to remove other childrens' body parts? Which procedure is more medically appropriate, Dr. Dickweed?!?
posted by Skwirl at 8:05 AM on July 28 [3 favorites]


Dr. Drew's reasoning: That child will be traumatized by not knowing which bathroom to go to and will be teased in the locker room.

I always get so confused by this ubiquitous and persistent argument. Pick a bathroom and use it; as long as you go in the stall nobody knows or cares what you look like when you're doing your business.

And it may be different in boys' locker rooms, but I went through six years of public school P.E. without once seeing another student's genital area. (Sorry to spoil any illusions created by Hollywood versions of girls' locker rooms.)
posted by The Underpants Monster at 8:22 AM on July 28


"And it may be different in boys' locker rooms, but I went through six years of public school P.E. without once seeing another student's genital area. (Sorry to spoil any illusions created by Hollywood versions of girls' locker rooms.)"

My experience in middle school gym (especially on swimming days) was that boys' locker rooms do indeed operate on dick-out rules. It's no Eakins, and some kids have to have privacy (I had to change in the teacher's office because bullies kept stealing my clothes and hassling me).
posted by klangklangston at 3:01 PM on July 28


Boys rooms are basically Lord of the Flies.
posted by Skwirl at 3:29 PM on July 28 [2 favorites]


My experience in middle school gym (especially on swimming days) was that boys' locker rooms do indeed operate on dick-out rules.

Boys rooms are basically Lord of the Flies.

Yikes, I guess we did have it easier in the girls' room, then. So Skwirl is right - there is a problem, but the solution is changing the status quo of behavior in the locker rooms rather than kids' bodies.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:00 PM on July 28


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