Target? Bullseye.


Aaaand let the protests begin. Target is allowing anyone to use any restroom they identify with. It’s the first national retailer to make a stand on where folks pee.

On its website, Target posted the following:

Recent debate around proposed laws in several states has reignited a national conversation around inclusivity. So earlier this week, we reiterated with our team members where Target stands and how our beliefs are brought to life in how we serve our guests.

Inclusivity is a core belief at Target. It’s something we celebrate. We stand for equality and equity, and strive to make our guests and team members feel accepted, respected and welcomed in our stores and workplaces every day.

We believe that everyone—every team member, every guest, and every community—deserves to be protected from discrimination, and treated equally. Consistent with this belief, Target supports the federal Equality Act, which provides protections to LGBT individuals, and opposes action that enables discrimination.

There are cheers and there are jeers. It should come as no surprise to you that I’m cheering, as are many of my friends, but I know of some who aren’t. Their issue seems to be fear-based, as near as I can tell. Those who oppose it say they are concerned for their safety.

My thought is this: If I was born a woman but identify as a man, I’m a woman going into the men’s room. How likely is it that I’m going to attack a guy? Not very. Conversely, if I was born a man but identify as a woman, I’m embracing my feminine side – which means I’m probably the LAST person who’s going to prey on anyone.

Of course, that’s just my take on it – based on nothing but my own thought process. But the statistics bear out my theory. Who’s more likely to get assaulted – straights or those who live an alternative lifestyle ? Check out these numbers:

Hate-motivated violence against transgender people rose 13 percent last year, while the number of overall incidents of hate-motivated violence against LGBTQ and the HIV-affected communities dropped 32 percent, compared with the previous year.  Source: Buzzfeed

While overall violence against LGBTQ and HIV-affected people is down, trans women and LGBTQ people of color are more and more likely to be attacked, even killed. Source: Source:

Homicides of LGBTQ and HIV-impacted people increased 11 percent between 2013 and 2014, according to the figures from the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs.

I’m not saying this is an easy conversation to have, but this restroom debate needs to be sorted out. People feel incredibly strongly about this issue, as evidenced by the polarizing reactions shown over HB2, “the bathroom law” in North Carolina, “religious grounds” in Mississippi, and now in restrooms at Target. I, for one, will continue to shop at Target because:

A) I really love their merchandise; and

B) because I stand in support of the LGBT community and their right to use the bathroom that they feel comfortable in.

Here’s a thought: what if we just went in to the bathroom, did our business, washed our hands, and got out without thinking about what is in someone else’s underwear? Because honestly, who’s gonna check that?






Fear Factor


I’m struck by the reaction to HB2, and I guess by the reaction to LGBT issues in general. This is apparently a very polarizing topic and I’m really, really trying to understand why.

I grew up in the community theatre environment, where any number of people involved were gay. Perhaps it’s because I was introduced to the idea as a young person, but I’ve always just accepted that they are who they are, just as I am who I am. It’s never upset me, never confused me, never disgusted me, and certainly never scared me.

Now, many years later, it’s becoming commonplace for the LGBT community to be more open about their choices. They’re hiding it less. I think that’s awesome. I think anything that helps people be happier is a good thing. A GREAT thing, even. Help me understand why it’s not, please.

Those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual,or transexual are not trying to get me to change my mind about my own sexuality. They’re not trying to convert anyone. They just want to live their life just as I want to live mine.

I look at it this way: some people love the mountains. Some love the ocean. Some love to snow ski. Others choose to hike. Still others like to lie in the sun all day. They all do their own thing and it doesn’t affect those who aren’t into those activities. The skiiers aren’t out there trying to convince the beach bums that they have to choose a downhill slalom, and the sunbathers couldn’t care less that the hikers would rather rock climb. Each does what makes them happy.

Why is sexuality so different? And why does it MATTER? Why does it strike fear in some of those who live a ‘straight’ life? If you can shed some light on that for me, please do so. Help me understand. Because for now, I’m not seeing it.

Now please excuse me. I’m going to go sunbathe.

Proud to be in VA

After all of the uproar over HB2, the “bathroom bill” in North Carolina, it’s rewarding to see Virginia doing the right thing. Allow me to explain.

The 4th Circuit Court in Virginia just ruled that a Gloucester County transgender high school student should be allowed to use the boy’s restroom in his public high school. The 2-1 decision overturned last year’s ruling that stated Gavin Grimm, a junior, had to use the girl’s restroom because he was born female.

Grimm identifies as a male, and for a few short months in 2014, was allowed to use the boy’s bathroom … right up until people complained and the case promptly went to court. (Anyone else tired of an overly litigious society?)

But now the ruling means he can walk into the boy’s room again to do his business. There’s rumors this might have an impact on NC’s recent law (please, yes) that says people have to use the restroom that corresponds to the gender on their birth certificate, which is simply ludicrous to me. Anything that serves to overturn HB2 is a huge step in the right direction.

For those who are upset: Guys, the kid just wants to go to the bathroom, for crying out loud! He’s not preying on anyone. Leave him in peace and find something else to sue over. Like the number of napkins McDonald’s hands out.

Standing Up, Standing Out

Like many of us, I’ve been watching the reaction to HB2, the bathroom law in North Carolina that dictates people have to use the bathroom that corresponds to the genderbathroom on their birth certificate. I can’t wrap my head around why — not just trying to understand the reasoning (if someone is intent on hurting another person, is a bathroom door really an effective deterrent?), but also the timing. Why NOW, when it seemed we’d made some strides toward acceptance??

So when artists started cancelling shows in NC out of protest, I was cheering. My immediate reaction was, YES! Boycott the hell out of the state and make them face their own stupidity, looking squarely at themselves in a gender-neutral bathroom mirror. Ringo Starr? Canceled. Circque du Soleil? Same thing. The reactions to these announcements are interesting, to say the least.  When Bruce Springsteen announced he’d cancelled his show to protest HB2, The NY Post called it “his silly stand for bathroom rights.” Silly? Why silly? He’s raising his voice in opposition. Since when is that silly? It’s one of the strongest rights we have in this country – to express ourselves freely. His outrage – and his means of showing it – are anything but silly to many, many people.

But then I read about Mumford and Sons, who are going on as planned. At first blush, you might think that means the band doesn’t give a … hoot. (It’s a bathroom post – you knew I had to go there.) But thankfully, the truth is just the opposite. The band is creating a charitable fund and donating the money raised in ticket sales for their North Carolina performance to support a local LGBTQ organization. Taking something heartwrenching and turning it into something beneficial… now that, I can get behind.

I love this quote from Bill Boulding, dean of Duke University‘s Fuqua School of Business regarding this whole debacle:

“Discrimination in any form should never be tolerated. It’s simply unacceptable. There is no justification. And it’s up to all of us to speak out when injustice rises.”

So speak out, in whatever way you feel makes your point the strongest. Whether it’s protesting by boycotting, by donating or by simply expressing your opinion, make yourself heard. And here’s the cool thing: it’s not silly. Standing up for yourself – or someone else – is never “silly.” It’s right.

I’m Coming Out

Don’t let the title fool you – I’m as straight as it gets. However, I’m ready to reveal something that I’ve held inside for a long time… I’m working on a new book.

This one is very different from the one I published in 2008 (which was Word of Mouth Advertising, Online and Off. Interested in reading it? Here’s the link to purchase!). That was my first foray into publishing and it was a great experience.

But I’m writing a very different one this time: this book is all about love. It’s an incredible love story unlike anything you’ve ever heard, trust me. And it’s TRUE.

It’s a remarkable story about love triumphing against some pretty incredible odds. As our society comes to accept love in all forms, I have reveled in marriage equality in all 50 states, watched as Caitlyn Jenner’s story unfolds and shuddered at North Carolina’s bathroom law. All of this has touched me personally – not because I’ve had any personal experience with it, but because this story I want to tell has a bit of all of that and more.

Moving forward, this blog will focus more on these types of topics. I know that makes some people uncomfortable, but it’s my hope that we can share and discuss these issues respectfully; acknowledging that we all deserve the right to live the life that feels right to us – whatever that might look like.

I hope you’ll continue this journey with me, and that you’ll allow me to share my feelings, insight, and stories with you as this book comes to fruition. After all, a book needs more than a story. It needs a reader too.

Power Suits

I’d like to do a bit of digging on the whole ‘power suit’ concept. Where did that start? And more importantly, why?

I’m at an event in D.C. today and there are more than 1,000 people here. I’d guess 95% are men. And every one of them is in a power suit. The small cadre of women are dressed in their power ensembles too, which adds to my point.

1,000 people – all individuals, all from different parts of the country, from different companies, with different job titles – and you can’t tell them apart. When did dressing for success become dressing like everyone else?

Sure, there are variations. Some people have dark grey suits. The rare bird has a dark blue one. Some are sporting a tie with colors that venture beyond blue and white. Beyond that, though, there’s very little differentiation.

Is this just a DC thing? What’s a powersuit in California? Would you stand out because you’re in a button-down and everyone else is wearing a hoodie, jeanshoodiandsuit and sneakers?

As more Millenials become the bulk of the workforce, will the powersuit still be a staple of the work wardrob? Or will it be considered on fleek? (Had to look that one up on Urban Dictionary!)

I don’t get it. We’re supposed to stand out from the crowd, right? To embrace our individuality. To show off that which makes us special. But here we are, lemmings (allbeit well-dressed ones).

Do you take people less seriously if they’re not in a suit? If they’re sporting bare arms does that make them less trustworthy somehow?

I’m sporting my short, spiky hair with pride today, knowing it’s one of the things that sets me apart. You could look across a sea of people in this place and find me just based on my hair.

Oh, and by the way, I like being at an event where women are so outnumbered – for the sheer fact that the line for the restroom was nearly non-existent. Those I had to wait with, though? You guessed it. All dressed in power suits.

Power to the people, I guess.


We’ll weather the weather whatever the weather whether we like it or not.

I was on FB this week (shocker, I know) and chuckled when I saw the meme below. And yet it’s so true. The English language is full of ironies and of challenges that can make it difficult to communicate. As a writer, I have to try to ensure there’s little room for doubt about whatever I’m trying to convey.

Screen Shot 2016-04-06 at 6.51.36 PMThere are some great examples of confusing language at (See? More irony!)  Like this one:

“The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.”

What the what?! Sure, it makes sense if you are well-acquainted with our fine language, but a reader may find the meaning deserted him before he got the point.

Here’s another one:

“The farm was used to produce produce.”

A reader could be left scratching his head of lettuce over that one. Or maybe he’d be right scratching. I guess it depends on whether he’s ambidextrous.

Often some confusion can be cleared up by rewriting, and I think it also helps when the two identical words are not right next to each other. If I were rewriting this sentence, I’d likely change it to something like, “The farm produced a shit-ton of produce to please the leaf-loving vegetarians.” (No offense intended, veggie lovers … I consider myself a full-fledged meatarian.)

Of course, a rewrite could use a different verb to clarify: “The farm grew produce.” It doesn’t have much panache, but at least the meaning is clear. That’s where some fantastical adjectives can help give it color: “The 200-acre vegetable farm produced varied vegetables for vegans and vegetarians alike.” (Remember my affection for alliteration!)

Try reading this one fast:

“All the faith he had had had had no effect on the outcome of his life.”

I borrowed that example from the Grammarly blog. This example’s grammatically correct. It really is. But talk about something that could confuse the ever-lovin’ snot out of the poor reader who just wants to understand what you’re talking about.

There are plenty of instances where the same word means something totally different and can trip up the reader, who may have to re-read a sentence a couple of times for it to make sense. (Shouldn’t it trip the reader down? It’s hard to trip up. Just another example of the ironies of our fabulous language.)

Are there any words that trip you up – or down? I’d love to hear about them! Please comment and share what stumps you.

April Fools’ and other nicknames

Welcome to April. To spring. To grass that’s greening and to pollen that’s stuffing me up. And to my newly created blog with a carefully chosen moniker that reflects my witticism.

You might be wondering just how I decided on the name of my blog. Sit down and let me tell you the story. It doesn’t start with, “Once upon a time.” It doesn’t even start with, “Once.” Here’s why:

Anyone who knows me knows I’m famous for inserting, “That’s what she said” to just about any conversation – multiple times, if possible. Because if it’s funny one time, it’s riotous on the 50th. At least to me. So it was easy to name my blog “thats what Lynn said.” Plus it was clever. You know, like me. Bonus: it was available. That always helps.

I’m glad you’re along with me on this journey of words, wit and wisdom. (Notice – no Oxford comma. Not a fan. But I do love alliteration. A lot. And puns. The lamer, the better.) Prepare to be amazed at the thoughts I’ll put out there. Okay, they probably won’t be amazing. Sometimes they might be mildly amusing. I’m going for middle-of-the-road amazing. Maybe just “maz.”  And you can respond – and I’ll answer!  I share, you share, we’ll all share together.

That’s what she said.