Victor Victoria


Back in the day, I used to go to the Movies. Ya know, when movies were good. The Bigg hubs and I spent a few minutes the other day on the Google and looked at movies nominated for Best Picture since 1962. Example, the nominations for Best Picture in 1972 were The French Connection; Clockwork Orange; Fiddler on the Roof; The Last Picture Show, and Nicholas and Alexandria. I mean, COME ON! Any one of those films could have been Best Picture. What’d we have this year? (No really, what’d we have. I didn’t see any of them. Nor do I watch the Oscar’s anymore. I remember hearing Meryl Streep had some ridiculous speech on supporting Hollywood which is so lulz I can’t even be offended. Hey Meryl? When’s the last time you you made two successful movies in a row? Fok off.)

But back in the day I went to the movies. One of my fav’s from the early 80’s was Victor Victoria! Julie Andrews playing a woman pretending to be a man pretending to be a woman. Robert Preston, Leslee Ann Warren, James Garner and big mean Alex Karras! This, my friends, is a movie cast. Sweet fun. Sweet musical scenes and Robert Preston (I wanted to be related to Robert Preston when I was growing up. I dunno, he just seemed so cool and always ready to give you a hug even while he’s giving it to you straight on how to fix your life. I always like him, or who I perceived him to be.)

I hadn’t thought about this movie in a long time. But then April happened and a man won the Women’s 35-39, 90+ division at the Masters World Games in New Zealand.


Now, I will be the first to admit that parts of this is murky. Some say that Gavin Hubbard (who now goes by Laurel, at least where Weightlifting is concerned) has had reassignment surgery and some reports are that he hasn’t. Dunno, but let’s talk about Gavin for just a moment.

But first, this is not a post about the general transgender population. This is a post about a biological man (or men/boys around the world) competing with women/girls when they are clearly not women/girls. Feelings don’t dictate biology, biology does.


Gavin was an okay weightlifter who finally realized that he was not going to make it on the world stage as a man. So he changed his name to Laurel, and with some family money tried to take over New Zealand weightlifting. At some point, his weightlifting administration job was dissolved so he headed up his own weightlifting center and here we are.

The IOC, much like most local High School athletic associations, don’t want anything to do with this so they’ve changed the former rule of a transgender woman needing two years of hormone treatment POST surgical re-assignment to the now, nahhhhhh-go ahead and compete. We’ll test you a bit with your testosterone but as long as it’s at the lowest point of the range for males-you good. You go girl!

It’s horseshit. Absolute and complete horseshit.

It takes women in sports to Pre-Title IX conditions. Now, on that note, here’s the problem with not looking back. We don’t realize where we came from. Title IX was passed in 1972 and I’m guessing there are women, who played sports, who are in their 20’s who have no idea it exists. They just think that there’s always been a Men’s and a Women’s soccer team on campus. I mean, like-duhhhhh, why wouldn’t their be? That’d be so, like, unfairrrrrr.

But back to Laurel/Gavin. See, the main problem I see with these situations is that the organizers are treating these athletes as two separate people. Gavin no longer exists. Suddenly, only Laurel exists. And we’ll just pretend it’s been Laurel who has been weightlifting for the last 20 or more years. So her bone structure and strength is the same as a female. Her muscle mass will be the same as the average 30-something weightlifter. Her frame, ligaments, grip strength-EVERYTHING THAT GOES INTO PLAY IN BEING AN EXCEPTIONAL WEIGHTLIFTER/ATHLETE is now that of a woman. We’ll just disregard everything BUILT for those 30-plus years as a man and say it’s now an even playing field.

JHMFC! That’s not how this works. That’s not how any of this works!

The good news? Well, at least for weightlifting, it’s the least of their worries. They’re doing their own self-destruction dance with a large percentage of their top athletes receiving bans for doping and the IOC has about had enough of their shenanigans. They’ve already lost at least two male weight categories for the next Olympics and I’ll have my popcorn ready to watch the show when more and more men decide to “identify” as females and head over to those classes. Think it won’t happen? Then you’re a silly person who doesn’t understand that giving in to a four year old won’t make them demand for more.

Also, and I do understand that this get’s touchy, (especially to the “coexist” crowd) it’s okay to stand up and declare BULLSHIT. Whether at the youth sports/high school/elite level competition stage. I’ve heard of fellow competitors who say, “No way, I am not competing against that biological male. I am a biological female and this is not right” where they received hate male for their intolerance. This is the fucked up America we’ve let ourselves walk into.

It is not intolerance. It is right v. wrong. It used to be valued to stand up for right v. wrong. Used to be. My problem is that I was raised in that environment. I’ve seen it’s hypocrisy. I don’t like it. I don’t need people standing on top of the mountain screaming, but I do expect people to stand up. Especially when they’ve been helped by other’s standing up for them.

If you don’t, you really are a piece of shit. Harsh mommy? Maybe. But I miss the days where standing up was the norm. Now, we bury our heads in the sand and hope that unpleasantness will just disappear altogether and we never have to look at it again.

Intolerant? Hokay. I’m intolerant. I’m not competing against a biological male or a transgendered female who had 30 plus years as a male in competition. Fuck that. I don’t expect other women or girls to compete against biological males at any age or those who have built their entire structure as a male but a year later says they want to tackle the female divisions. Fuck that.

Fuck that.

Fairness is what justice really is.

Potter Stewart


About tosabarbell

For training opportunities at tosabarbell, call or text Juli at 320-296-9313. e-mail to At tosabarbell, I build relationships cultivated in a strength and learning environment. There is no 12 week magic pill program to strength but rather a lifetime commitment to be the very best and most useful human you can be. tosabarbell is a private, home grown gym with three lifting platforms; squat rack; prowlers; throwing implements; bars, bumpers and everything else needed for an effective strength and conditioning program. Straightforward barbell programming including the Olympic lifts; sound (read: not fancy bullshit) diet advance for weight gain or loss; and strong coaching will ensure you will meet your goals such as becoming stronger, more explosive, and better conditioned. I have been coaching teams and athletes for over 30 years. I grew up participating in various sports at various levels but was always drawn to those that require strength training. I have multiple local, national, and world records in the sports of Weightlifting and Highland Games Heavy Events as well as a combined total of 5 World Championships. My 5 years of training and coaching under Mark Rippetoe provided a wide range of influence from some of the top strength & conditioning and throwing coaches in the country. I will strongly encourage tosabarbell athletes to compete (and prepare you to do so.) However, tosabarbell is also for those who wish to be stronger and go through life feeling better. Matt WanAt is a retired Professional Strongman who competed frequently with Strongman Champions League in Europe. He played a year of D1 football with Iowa before concentrating on his Chemical Engineering degree in Iowa City. He is a native of Wauwatosa and still remains a staunch supporter of Tosa East. This blog will be a mixture of strength notes, coaching and nutrition tips, personal shit; bacon delicacies, and a whole lot of fun.
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