The Toronto Sun, Monday May 8, 2000 LIFESTYLE 35
Foxy Roxy: Takin’ a Walk on the Wildside with Roxy Wildside
By Sandy Naiman
His name is Roxy and sometimes he’s a woman.
Roxy – because it’s somewhere between foxy and moxie, and it takes moxie to be a studio heterosexual transvestite, living in Toronto with your closet doors wide open.
Ask Mile Bullard. As Roxy, he’s appeared 33 times on Bullard’s national TV show. Takes guts. Crossdressing tends to poison marriages, explode families, kill careers.
As Dear Roxy, he’s an advice columnist for Tab, an erotic little mag geared to crossdressers – gay and straight.
His name was Dee when he found Paddy Aldridge’s boutique, Take A Walk On The Wildside, on Feb. 16, 1995. He wanted to be a sissy French maid and in 55 minutes, like a burlesque Pygmalion, Paddy transformed the shy, courteous, 6-foot-1 former corporate assassin into Roxy Wildside, the ravishing woman he’d always longed to be.
Or one of them. Roxy can be many women. It all depends on the wig he wears. He stresses the tresses, just like a girl. “I’d never wanted to be a biological woman,” he growls, sounding like the man there’s no doubt he is.
If clothes make the woman, fetishism makes the man. He got his first orgasmic erotic charge as a kid, secretly slipping into his aunt’s bathing suit on a visit to her cottage. Shoes, earrings, panties – now anything does it.
He dreamed of working as a ship girl in a women’s boutique. Now, he’s she, sitting snugly behind the cash register of Take A Walk On The Wildside at 161 Gerrard St. E. He and Paddy, a former stripper, were wed in 1997 and as vice-president, he’s now married to her business, too, and that suits his femme personal just fine.
Dressed in his cute white tennis jumper, matching Keds with lacy laces, his long auburn hair hangs limp beneath a white sweatband – not a great hair day.
After a nine-hour workday all decked out, he prefers being a little androgynous at home, upstairs. When the shop closes, he switches into sweat pants and a T-shirt, sliding closer to his more masculine side. But his foot-long ponytail is a clue.
His name is Thomas James Sloan and he was born in Windsor 53 years ago, the younger of two boys to free-spirited parents who desperately wanted a daughter.
Today he’s a glamour girl, in drag. A gender activist. He can be the most beautiful woman in the world – every man’s fantasy – and, luckily, only women can ever figure him out.
Roxy passed away and is missed.
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