Every comment is a brick in the bridge to whatever comes next for us.
Commenter Name: Doc Holligay
Real Name: Randi
Job: Works in a Bank’s Legal Department / Accounting Student
Back in April, I Google hung out for 57 minutes with the commenter you chose as the first in this series of profiles on YOU, THE WONDERFUL XOJANE COMMENTERS! None other than DOC HOLLIGAY!
It was so much fun and I learned a lot. She sat at her desk drinking what I first thought was tea but was bourbon and I drank tea. She said she was nervous but didn’t show it.
I was maybe most excited to hear her voice and see what she looks like and her mannerisms and all that. She is a star to me, you know. I love that she was cool with me showing you all some video and images of her too. In a nutshell, I love her.
Then I took like forever to write and edit the thing. I promise to get on an Internet pace with the next in the series. Who should it be? Please weigh in below! Xoxo!
JP: Why Doc? Why not Billy The Kid? Or Jessie James? Butch Cassidy?
DH: For starters, the first western I ever saw was Tombstone. I was a little thing, and I remember seeing it and being like this is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. All I want to do with the rest of my life is drink, and gamble, and sleep with hot redheads. Doc’s story was that he just got tuberculosis and was like fuck it! So I find that really interesting.
JP: So it’s not just on Disqus that you call yourself Doc Holligay?
DH: Well, not Doc Holligay. I do have people in my normal day-to-day life that call me Doc. it all came out of when I was studying and people that I did reenactments with. But there are people who call me it now because they’ve heard other people call me that. So I go by either or both. But at work I don’t go my Doc -- I can’t imagine going up to my boss and being like, “Call me Doc!”
Part of the reason I don’t use my last name online is because I don’t want a [potential] employer to be able to Google me and find out that I’m gay. It’s harder to fire someone because they’re gay; it’s a lot easier to put someone’s resume in a particular file if they’re gay.
JP: I didn’t think of that aspect of it, that people could be traced back to their comments. In fact, when I was launching xoJane, I was thinking of asking all the commenters to please use their full real names, because -- well, you know what can happen when people are commenting anonymously.
DH: Oh yeah, I’m well aware. That has happened on xoJane. I think anonymity makes people into assholes. Well, it can, it doesn’t have to. Especially you see people who are like, drive-by trolling. I have a presence on the site, so if I say something fucked-up, which I will, eventually or in the past, I have to own that. I’m a linked-in part of the community and I have to back up what I say. I can’t be an asshole all the time. I have to pick and choose my battles.
Whereas, if you’re drive-by trolling, making a burner account –- like you read a lot of those accounts where they’re slamming people -- a lot of those are the only comments they have. You look at the Disqus profile and all the comments are slamming somebody.
No matter what site you’re on, there are going to be writers you like and do not like. I think that it’s unrealistic to expect that everybody is going to like everybody… Not only does every writer have a different voice but we all bring our own bullshit to the table when we’re reading as well.
JP: OK, now for some of the questions from other commenters. Timeywimeymatters said, “I’d really like to hear how xoJane has been helpful to Doc personally.”
DH: I’ve made a ton of friends through xoJane, that are real friends now. People that I talk to, that I consider myself close to people that I’m going to go see. It’s been a really good place because I feel like it’s a place where I can talk about things that I don’t normally get to talk about in my real life and express different thoughts and perspectives.
I think for a lot of people, xoJane is a personal confessional, where you can say, “This happened to me, maybe I can’t talk about it in real life, but it doesn’t make it any less a part of what I think or who I am or how I feel.”
That’s actually one of the things I worry about as xoJane gets bigger. On one hand, you want it to grow and succeed, but at the same time the bigger it gets the less personal it gets and I wonder at what point people will stop feeling safe bringing their issues to the table here.
JP: Me too, I worry about the same thing. Because I want it to feel like a place where people can come and be open about their personal stuff, where there’s no judgment and no shame. It is critically important to me to maintain that.
Next, Raulduke asks, “Ask her what it’s like to be a femme lesbian in Montana.”
DH: It’s hard being gay in Montana. I think part of the difficulty of being femme in Montana (and I’m super femme -- I don’t wear pants, I don’t leave the house without makeup on, that kind of thing) is that a lot of people here don’t read me as gay, which is good and bad.
The over-exaggerated version of femininity that I get into is way more acceptable to people at large than doing the androgyny thing. But gay women don’t read me as gay either. Most lesbians in Montana are into other butch girls. That’s been my experience at least. Not so much into femmes around here.
Also, a week ago, gay sex was just decriminalized. That happened just a week ago. So that’s what being gay in Montana is like. A lot of times gay people don’t come out because you don’t know how people are going to react, and you don’t know if you’re going to be safe. Most people I know aren’t as out as I am, because there is an aspect of danger to it.
JP: Anything else you can think of that we didn't talk about [this was way edited down, by the way -- there were like 50 more minutes in here]? Or anything you want to ask me?
DH: Oh, I’m going to do what they do every Saturday. Every Saturday someone asks you to hire them. I feel like people should start sending their resumes in in the comments or something. I could be your day-drinking chicken wing-eating correspondent.
JP: That’s awesome! When I'm hiring one of those, you have the job, for sure. I may even have to create a position just for you. I’m sure there are things I forgot to ask so we’ll continue the conversation in the comments.
And before we go, I took your further advice and asked Randi (now I can call her Randi! but I still want to call her Doc Holligay) the Same 5 Questions. Here you go! Love you all!
Same 5 Questions We Always Ask
Have you ever faked an orgasm? No. Which is probably why I’m also single.
The closest you’ve come to being arrested? Very very close? As in ... I have been. That’s all I’m going to say. AND THAT IS ALL SHE SAID. DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING ELSE IN MIND?
The most surprising thing you do when you’re alone? Every Sunday night is cigar night at Casa de Holligay.
The most played song on your iPod? The score sweep from "Legends of the Fall." It’s the main theme from the movie. It’s like 15 minutes long and I think by James Horner. That’s pathetic but whatever.
Pills you take every day? I don’t. I do take Viactiv, those little chewy chocolate thingies. I should really throw a multivitamin there.
The grossest thing on your purse? A piece of gum that came out of a wrapper a while ago and is lying at the bottom of my purse. I know that’s true because the other day when I was digging for change and it got stuck to a piece of gum.
Your “celebrities to make-out with” list? Scarlett Johansson is going to marry me, she just doesn’t know it yet. Mila Kunis also. I would also happily to make-out with Rebel Wilson. I know she’s everyone’s cup of tea but man I would be all over that. And as I’ve stated on the site, if I were drunk I would probably sleep with Adrien Brody.