IGNORING THE FACE – BLENDING IN

2017 02 28

It’s the last day of February!  Not that I am encouraging time to go by at any faster speed.  When your days ahead are numbered less than the days behind, you don’t want to rush time!

One of my favorite poses for photos is from behind.  The illusion is absent any plusses or minuses of my face.  And with other people in the picture it reminds me of the vulnerability I feel when OUT enfemme.  Guys have flat shoes usually tied on, feet in socks, legs enclosed in pants no matter which way is up, short nails, short hair, covered torso’s, minimal to maybe no rings and bling, all developed over eons for escape, defense, or aggressiveness.  There is definitely a handicap in long hair, nails, rings, a skirt, exposed legs, stockings, and heels.  Even flight is hampered.  I feel this every time I am OUT.  It is SO much different when in drab.

This is SUCH FUN!

The Apartment Lounge is a great neighborhood bar that just happens to be welcoming to the straight population too.  You know when you come in there that you are going to be rubbing elbows with a mostly gay crowd.  So expect stomach aching humor, lots of hugs, kindness, and a warm welcome.

 In the picture I am feeling exposed and delicate.  But not as much as the second photo, in it I am feeling small and definitely vulnerable.

The shoes were gray when I bought them with the intention of recoloring them to yellow.  I have since also done a hat.

 

I LOVE the look in the doorway.  A black bolero style blazer with pouffy short sleeves, and pastel pink skirt with little pleats around the bottom.

 

 

 

 

At The Apartment Lounge.  You would think that a place known for the gay crowd would be completely safe for a CDer.  And it is.  Except that men are aggressive.  One time I was sitting at the south end of the bar minding my own business.  A guy six seats to the north made some small talk.  I made polite replies.  After about two sentences he was five seats away.  Then four.  Three, two.  Then sitting next to me.  He offered to buy me a drink, I am still trying to get smashed on Coke and grenadine.   After telling me his life story, seems to be a standard with guys,  he asked me if I would let him take me back to his place and tie me up.  Oh let me see………hmmmmmm………….  NO WAY!

 Again at The Apartment.   I love this suit  So business like.  Except for the feminine touches like the pleats and the bows.  Combined with the red hat, bling, and shoes it is understated but asks the question “What else is red?”.

 

 

Now we know what else is red.  Her horns under that hat are red.  At Bobbarino’s in The B.O.B.

 

 

This dress, from GWs was too small but I HAD to have it!  It was made with a navy stripe down the sides so I replaced that stripe with one that was wider and wallah!  It fits!  I love the from-the-behind and from-the-front in the mirror.  At DSW.

 

 

A white linen skirtsuit is SO fem.  Add the red accents and it is pure white interrupted by sexy red.  At GR Pride.  Since then I have painted a hat to match the shoes, which I had previously changed to red.

 

 

 

Going to The BOB.  And at the bar in H.O.M.E at The BOB.  I love this lace dress.  It was from a damaged freight place, they buy out the inventory from stores that were storm damaged or semi trucks that are in an accident.  The hangers had ripped the lace shoulders on all of them.  I bought it for like eight bucks and from Joanne a spool of thread.  It took and hour to repair the lace.  You can’t tell now.

 

Waiting at the bar in The BOB.  Hoping Mr Tie Me Up doesn’t show.  But a guy did offer me money for unspecified services.  I am already WITH someone in my life that no one could compare to.
The shoes were black when I bought them intending on changing the color to white.  They are very comfortable and I have a rainbow of colors now.

At Dress Barn.  Don’t get between me and a mirror.  To get these I had to put the camera on a clothes rack, do the zoom, set the timer, push the button, and run over to pose.  Then go back to the camera, review the picture, start the process all over again, but this time a bit different to get the mirror just right.

 

OMG I LOVE this dress!  It fits like a second skin.  The black velvet is offset by the white satin collar and cuffs.  I had a photoshoot and one of the outfits they provided was this dress.  I loved it so much I offered to buy it.  But they wouldn’t sell.  Then a year later, after searching Ebay ad on line diligently, I found one.  One size too small but it still fit.  Then the second time I wore it, it tore in the back on a corset stay that had broken through.  The corset was old but I was heartbroken about the dress.  I repaired both but the dress now has a little bit of a pucker in the back.  Amazingly about four months later ANOTHER dress showed up on Ebay and the right size too!  So no more heartbreak and total cost about $40.  I love the contrast between the black velvet and the long legs.  The ankle straps, hollow platforms, and peep toes make it a bit more sexy.

Again at The Apartment.  A sorta plain brown blazer with a shiny leather skirt.  There is something about leather clothes.

This dress is amazing.  The back is an open mesh between bands of the dress material.  This is fully dressed from head to toe except that all but the waist to knee is somehow exposed.  And even between the waist and knee the coverage is directional.  So the cold winter air reminds me that my back and from my thighs down are vulnerable to the cold.
Another pair of my re-colored shoes.

  Ah Sequins!!!!  And the color contrast between the black and the red.  And between the black and the legs!  Right there in The BOB lobby.  People passing by, too busy with their phones to even notice me.  Bliss!

When I first saw this dress it was well over a hundred bucks!  Now this gal is more of a GWs budget.  I can get fifteen dresses at GWs for what this dress would cost new.  So what to do?  Wait for a sale and cross my fingers.  Why?  Because this little number is tight packed black sequins.  Unless you run your hands over the dress from bottom to top.  Then it is silver.  The women at the bar, “Billy’s”, couldn’t get over this and I was rubbed down and up over and over.  Note the lower back opening, it is boat neck in front.  So I wore a long silver necklace as a choker in front with the extra hanging down my back.  I could feel the cool metal on my skin.

I LOVE THIS!  It is an adventure.  Full of new experiences.  And one of the best parts is I get to experience the total opposite too.  I am absolutely madly in love with my SO.  It is like winning a lottery.

Feel free to leave comments on this blog.  You may also tell me if you prefer that your comments be private.  As the all powerful blogger I get to decide what shows up on the blog.  Compliments are appreciated.  Suggestions are encouraged.  Criticism will result in an army of minions beating down your door.  (Just kidding!)

You can also email me at
Crossdressers-wmi@hotmail.com

The Grand Illusions website is at:
http://www.crossdressersmichigan.com

SUCH FUN!

Billie

 

 

 

CROSSDRESSING – Part F: SAFETY IN STYLE


2017 02 22

Reading the chat groups, forums, and FB leads me to believe that the biggest category of crossdressers are the “closeted” ones.  The smaller percentage are OUT.  An even smaller percentage are somewhat trans.  Not enough to transition yet enough to have a non sexual need.  This is not about the fetishists who do it for the thrill and can stop at any time.  This is about the CDers who crossdress because they have to. With enough inner feminine that they need to release their other self to balance their self worth, their emotions, their happiness.  They don’t do it for pleasure entirely, they do it for relief from the pressure of bottling it up inside and hiding.

This post is about fashionable safety when OUT enfemme.  Very few CDers go OUT in public.  Some of the fetishists do.  Some of the CDers who have trans characteristics do.  Some who do it just for fun go OUT.  This is safety thing not about the fetishists who may be looking for attention.  And besides, that is not what our Group, The Grand Illusions, is after when we go OUT.  Going OUT in public validates our crossdressing.  Going OUT in public is nothing to do with being noticed, we don’t want to be noticed.  Going OUT is all about just living, just being, just being ourselves.  Blending in is critical for trans crossdressers, the ones that crossdress to equalize their inner or mental self with their physical self.  It is part of our survival instincts.  The fetishists don’t care, they WANT to be noticed.  We trans CDers do NOT want to be noticed.

So there are two distinct goals of the crossdressing community who go out in public.  One is to be noticed, the fetishists.  The other is to not be noticed , the trans crossdressers.  This last group is made up of the true explorers, the full on transpersons and the crossdressers with trans characteristics.  They HAVE to do this, it solves a missmatch between their inner and outer self.

And then in nature there is rarely black OR white.  There are CDers with trans characteristics who like to flash and get noticed.  There are fetishists who want to blend in.  And everywhere on the spectrum.  But if you divide the community up, it still comes down to those who dress behind closed doors, those who dress to get attention, and those who dress to go out in public and hope to be ignored.

Our Group, The Grand Illusions, needs to support all of these diverse groups.  But if you look at the characteristics you can see that there are really two meeting formats that will provide something of value for all three.  An explanation of our meetings is at the bottom of this post.

So to be NOT safe when OUT, a crossdresser could place a red flashing beacon on her head, wear a sign, wear neon anything, wear a micro mini, unusual hair, sky high platforms, drag makeup, anything not blending.   Combat boots, a muumuu, a Halloween wig, hairy legs, arms, a beard.  Or everything appropriate but assembled badly.  Like a bad makeup job.  Cashing colors or styles.

What we need to project is an accurate reproduction of a female as we can.  Shape, style, color, posture, gait, mannerisms.  From our hair to our shoes, everything needs to be just right.  Or as just right as we can get.

We have been doing this for four years now.  People seem to accept us, more or less, because we are respectful of the gender we are imitating.  When walking through a mall, a store, in a restaurant, people seem to become bored with us in a matter of seconds and go on about their business.  Or their phone need s them.

And that seems to make what we are doing less risky.  In four years we have had no incidents.

Blending in must be the reason.

 

Next: Safety like a girl.

 

About our Group.

We have two meetings a month. Most months the first meeting is an IN meeting.  The meeting facilities are very secure and away from prying eyes. Members may arrive and leave enfemme or if not arriving enfemme, we have three private changing rooms for anyone needing to get dressed and later, if they choose, return to guy before leaving. The meeting starts anywhere from 5:30 to 6:30pm for anyone needing to get dressed.  During this time I am in the building lobby to answer questions for anyone and start the gab session with those arriving enfemme.  At 6:30 those not dressed or in the process of getting dressed are excused.  This keeps everyone on the same page, everyone is enfemme.  So from 5:30pm until 6:30pm, anyone needing to get dressed may do so.   The real enfemme meeting starts at 6:30.  The meeting begins at 6:30pm in a very private meeting room.  If someone has big secrets they can come at 5:30 with their stuff and get ready here.  Or they can come dressed at 6:30.  Lots of CDers come dressed at 5:30.  Some come in guy at 5:30pm and change.  The IN meeting is set up for any comfort level.  The meeting is set up so no one has to be “passable” but everyone should put a little effort in to it.  Women’s clothing, a wig or long hair, women’s shoes, makeup of at least lipstick is a good starting point.  This is just a means to put us all on the same page.  Some cannot go OUT enfemme.  Some have no desire to go OUT enfemme.  Some go OUT enfemme all the time, are experienced, and very “passable” but just enjoy the camaraderie at the IN meeting.  Some are fetishists and want a place to dress and be kind of wild about it.  We gab, help each other improve our presentation, and maybe have a pizza party.

Sometimes the IN meetings have a theme.  One meeting the theme was “Are you really going to wear that?!?”.  We wore outfits that you would not normally wear OUT enfemme but still in good taste.  They did not have to be street wear or blendable, some wore it, some brought it.  School girl, nurse, wedding dress, leather, lady lawyer, prom, or Goth, one or a bunch, they brought their cameras too.  If anyone has a wardrobe devoid of anything that we can’t wear to the grocery store then we need help and definitely should come for ideas.  Just keep it in good taste.  No one wants to look at anyone’s junk.

The second meeting of the month is an enfemme OUTing. It is open only to those who are able to blend in when OUT enfemme in the general population.  For those who need it, we have an actual written dress code.  We gather at the same building and for those needing to get dressed, we have the same options as the IN meetings at 5:30pm.  We leave at 6:30pm for dinner.  By then we will have already decided where to go.  Frequently we go to a modestly priced dinner in a general public restaurant where we have found good service and food.  Frequently we will do a little budget shopping for maybe an hour, or maybe a stroll in the mall.  Maybe a walk in a commercial area or down the main street.  It all depends on how long the food takes and how much fun we are having at the restaurant.  Then around 8:30pm we go back to the meeting place and change in to club wear.  Then off to a club at around 9:00ish for music, dancing, and fun. So you can connect with The Group at any time between 5:30 and 6:30pm, and again at any time between 8:30 and 9:00pm.  The clubs we have been frequenting are rarely gay oriented, mostly just regular clubs.  This is solely because the cover charges are less, the drink prices are less, and the music is, well, music.  Anyone needing to return to guy can go back to the meeting place with me and return to guy at around midnight.  Again, this is open only to those who are able to blend in, unfortunately often referred to as “passable”.  Blending in is not a beauty contest.  Blending in means you can walk from one end of the mall to the other, and back, without drawing any attention to yourself.  Or us.  Most girls already know if they should or should not go OUT enfemme.  If in doubt, we always recommend attending an IN meeting to get comfortable with us.  When OUT enfemme, blending in makes all the difference in the experience for you and the group.
Feel free to leave comments on this blog.  You may also tell me if you prefer that your comments be private.  As the all powerful blogger I get to decide what shows up on the blog.  Compliments are appreciated.  Suggestions are encouraged.  Criticism will result in an army of minions beating down your door.  (Just kidding!)

But if you want to tell me how much you can help me get money out of Ghana or how you can make my blog get more hits, I just add your messages to the provider’s spam database.  You are wasting your time.  And oh boy, I get these all the time.

You can also email me at
Crossdressers-wmi@hotmail.com

The Grand Illusions website is at:
http://www.crossdressersmichigan.com

SUCH FUN!
Billie

A DAY IN THE LIFE

2017 02 13

Most of you reading this won’t recognize the title.  When that title was the new thing I had NO IDEA I would be typing this.  No idea I would be doing ANYTHING like this.  No idea this existed.

“I read the news today, oh boy
About a lucky man who made the grade
And though the news was rather sad
Well I just had to laugh
I saw the photograph. ”

https://www.google.com/search?q=a+day+in+the+life&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8

From The Beatles “Sergeant Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band” album.

That album changed everything about music.  Their early recordings were simple with little subtlety like c=virtually every musician’s music is today.  Little sound craftsmanship just like today.  About half way through the albums their music had became complicated yet beautiful.  Their lyrics stated to make me think about things that I would not normally think about.  The sentences and words were just a little bit off, sorta understandable, yet British and different from American English.  Just when you thought you had it figured out, a new meaning would become evident.   Generally their music had become about love, anti war, anti snobbery, tolerance, acceptance, and loving each other.  The Beatles had become SO popular, such a musical FORCE beyond, perhaps, the combined impact of all the current groups.  So POPULAR that they were judged on every snippet of their newest music.  “Too little like real rock.”  “The Beatles can’t play real rock anymore.”  The people in the know, they were the judges.  Not the fans, NO WAY.  We bought those albums and loved them.  Wore them OUT.  They changed my life.

But back to my idea.  The Beatles decided to do an album in disguise.  And create a fictitious band so they could do the music they wanted.  Very different and groundbreaking.  A new band called ” Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” and I can tell you that it changed music forever!  I was sad, bullied, from a broken home, knowing my life would end in a few years in some rice paddy on the other side of the world.  And THEN this MUSIC!  OMG it was WONDERFUL!!!!  An acid trip without the acid!  I wore it OUT!  Because I was able to escape the shit life I had through their music!  You can’t possibly understand how much that helped me survive.  Music was my pain antidote.

So a band needing to create a new persona to be able to escape the criticism of those incapable of creating music on their own?

Something like crossdressing.  I created a new ME.

Now to the fluff:

I was OUT all day Friday and loving it!  First lunch at Noodles and Company because my favorite burger joint was closed.  The owners complain about how difficult it is yet they close the place down to go on vacation in the Caribbean.  Meanwhile their employees are unemployed. I wore a blazer and skirt from GWS, about $7.00.  But they are not the same exact pattern, though you can hardly tell.  Close enough for a CDer.  The blazer was a shrug of sorts because it had no closures.  So I added hook and eyes to make it so I could close it mostly.  Under it I wore a ruffle neck cami.  And while putting myself together I decided to add a broach (from Bangkok) at the bottom of the blazer.  All worn over boots that used to be black.  SUCH FUN!

After lunch I hit the nearby GWs and found a skirt just like I have been seeking for nearly four years.  A pink leather skirt!  Fits perfectly except it is WAY too long.  So I will shorten it and maybe use the excess leather for a hat sash and even make pink suede lapels for a blazer and/or a pink suede belt for the blazer.  Yes it is that long, plenty of extra material.  I think a skirt and matching belt with a hat sash will be just right.  Maybe I will make a purse too?  I LOVE the colors and the coordinated look!

While at GWs I scouted larger sizes for nice bargains for our larger girls.  For the 18 and up sizes it takes patience and lots of hunting to find pretty and nice outfits.  Then off to Burlington on 28th ST SE.  There I found quite a few really nice dresses ($15ish) and skirts ($10ish).  Up to size 30.  I found a great shrug, exactly what I was looking for, for $5.  It says size 3X but it is way smaller than that.  Perhaps that is why they weren’t selling.  Five bucks!

Then off to GR Pride to meet the gals and change in to another outfit.  This color block dress, OMG!  I found it at GWs for five bucks 🙂 and it fits PERFECTLY!  With the shrug from Burlington!  And my spectators that I got on sale a few year ago from Payless! OMG!  I felt SO pretty!!!!   BLISS!!!!!!!

We had dinner at Chez Olga just around the corner from GR Pride.  The owner and her family run the restaurant.  About ten or eleven bucks for dinner.  It is among the best restaurant food I have ever had!!!!   And I have eaten at some VERY fancy places.  Olga’s isn’t fancy.  But the Creole Chicken is to die for!!!   And Olga is SO SWEET!

Then back to GR Pride to change in to club wear.  I found this dress last spring in JC Pennys of all places.  I wanted it SO bad.  But at a hundred bucks, NO WAY.  So I waited and waited and waited and FINALLY the price went WAY down.  To bargain level.  And I bought it with giggles of anticipation.  But I HAD to wait to wear it for the right place and a night with enough hours at a club to allow me the full pleasure of it.  OMG!  Black and shiny and sparkly all over!!!!   The neckline was high in the front and low in the back so I took a long silver chain/bead necklace, wrapped it around my neck as a choker, and had the extra hanging down my bare back.  I could feel the cool chain moving on my skin.  I felt SO FEM!  But the dress was snagging my stockings.  So I had to take them off.  I had never been out or dressed before without stockings.  And it was like 20degf outside and windy.  And I had bare feet in my Mary Janes and bare legs up to ………there.  OUT in 20degf breezy night.  A new experience.  I could feel EVERY time the outside door opened to the club, even when I was on the dance floor all the way on the other side.  And my legs had just a bit of tan, looked SO good.  And smooth with skin silky from regular moisturizing.  OMG I felt SO sensuous!

This dress had a surprise.  It changed colors.  Rub me up and I am shiny sparkly black.  Rub me down and I am shiny sparkly silver.  And it held a surprise for ME!  When the women in the club discovered this, hands were all over me changing my color.  Drawing on me.  Writing on me.  A few went down past my hem.  Discovering my silky legs.  They were amazed and asked me what I had used to get my skin so smooth? !!?  Amazing the questions we get asked.

One couple asked me if they could be in a picture with me.  One guy, a sweetheart, was so pleased to see all of us OUT there that he bought us two rounds of shots.

And here is a picture of some of us.  My buds.

This is a typical OUTing with The Grand Illusions CDer Group.
SUCH FUN!!!!

Feel free to leave comments on this blog.  You may also tell me if you prefer that your comments be private.  As the all powerful blogger I get to decide what shows up on the blog.  Compliments are appreciated.  Suggestions are encouraged.  Criticism will result in an army of minions beating down your door.  (Just kidding!)

You can also email me at
Crossdressers-wmi@hotmail.com

The Grand Illusions website is at:
http://www.crossdressersmichigan.com

SUCH FUN!

Billie

 

MY TIME AS A MANNEQUIN

2017 02 09

Anyone who looks at my FB page or reads my blog can tell what I am and what I am not and what I like to do when enfemme.

Part of why I do this is to experience the world in a very different way.  Traveling is another.  By going to places all over the world and keeping an open mind, I have learned that people are more alike than different.  We all love our mothers.  We all want a warm place in the winter, a dry place in the summer.  That our children are safe.  That we have enough to eat.  And a bit of prosperity.  As long as religion hasn’t taken control of their minds.  Not all religions, but definitely the two largest in numbers.

Anyway I was in JC Pennys with Amy Pond a while back.  I was standing off the side of an intersection of two aisles watching Amy help the economy.  People would walk by and not even give me a glance.  Except for three groups who separately jumped after passing and returned to tell me they thought I was a mannequin.  Not THAT is a compliment!

The lady in the photo with me was so nice that I asked her if I could have a picture of us, oh and a hug.  To which she readily agreed.

I routinely have interactions with the general population.  (The GPs.)  I always make an effort to turn these encounters in to something positive.  They are good with no additional effort 95 of 100 times.  (An actual running count.)  The rest require a bit of extra effort.  Well worth it.

Some are the basic but appreciated “You look beautiful!”  Some are a lengthy dialogue about their friend, neighbor, son, niece, co-worker, or brother.  Some ask quite a few probing yet polite questions.  And the 5% who try to make it not positive get flushed away where they belong.

 

 

 

 

We are ambassatrix of the LGBTQ community and GR Pride when we are OUT enfemme.  We should do it well because we are making an impression.

I wrote a blog about just this:

MADAME AMBASSADOR?

Feel free to leave comments on this blog.  You may also tell me if you prefer that your comments be private.  As the all powerful blogger I get to decide what shows up on the blog.  Compliments are appreciated.  Suggestions are encouraged.  Criticism will result in an army of minions beating down your door.  (Just kidding!)

You can also email me at
Crossdressers-wmi@hotmail.com

The Grand Illusions website is at:
http://www.crossdressersmichigan.com

SUCH FUN!

Billie

OUT FOR THE FIRST TIME

2017 02 07

Friday February 3rd 2017 was another Grand Illusion IN Meeting.  Pretty much on every meeting date I am OUT enfemme all day.  I start out with some lunch and then just enjoy the day.  One of the things I like to do is peruse the women’s clothes in the chain stores to see what will show up on the racks in two years, sometimes in just one year, at my clothes supplier of choice, Goodwill.  I can get ideas of what to buy down the road by looking at what is available today.  By looking at the new stuff I can see what skirts are intended to go with what top and/or blazers.  Same for dresses.  Even though I may come up with my own combinations depending on what I have in my (extensive) inventory.   I can also see the sales in the chain stores.  Dresses for $15 in Macy’s and Charlotte Russe, dresses for $10 in Pennys, Skirts for $10 or even $5 in Charlotte Russe, a sequined skirt for $5 in Rue 21.

This time I took a newbee with me.  She had never been for a stroll in a mall.  Ever.

Think about THAT!

And no one noticed us.  I even got a bunch of compliments.  Shoes, outfit, makeup, general appearance.  “You are Beautiful!”  If I was a cat I would be purring.

She is not yet ready for pictures of herself and certainly not ready for the to be posted on the internet.  I am very sensitive to the gals feelings about things like this.  So sorry, no first-time-photos.

This picture is in the lobby of the largest nightclub complex in Grand Rapids.  Notice how the people are so unaware of the CDer in their midst?I had quite a number of young and mature women approach me and tell me I looked beautiful.  Now in the scheme of things a compliment on my looks won’t solve our political problems.  It won’t even make the evening news.  But it IS a sign of acceptance.  Perhaps a sign of welcoming.  Or maybe just that I haven’t scared them.  Maybe acknowledgement of one artist’s efforts by another.  Whatever the motivation, I will take it.

The next photo shows a woman noticing me.  Her look is a smile in the making or a quizzical expression forming, but definitely not a frown.

In Pizza Hut waiting for pizzas for The Group, The woman at the counter isn’t even looking at me.

And lastly the pictures that make me feel good ’cause they do.“Every girl deserves a great pair of Leggs!”

The “double cross”.

I am SO HAPPY!

    I have had this dress for almost four years and just love it.  But I looked terrible in it.  BTW it was given to me by my SO.  I lost 40 pounds in those years and now I can wear it.  The back is an open mesh divided by bars of cloth.  I can feel the cool air on my back and legs yet I am fully dressed and those areas are covered.  Weird.  But I LOVE the sensory inputs.  SO DIFFERENT from reality.

 

For nearly four years The Grand Illusions have been OUT n about in a moderately conservative area with no significant issues.  If you follow our methods and practices, you too may find that getting OUT is more scary in your imagination and total bliss in the reality.

Feel free to leave comments on this blog.  You may also tell me if you prefer that your comments be private.  As the all powerful blogger I get to decide what shows up on the blog.  Compliments are appreciated.  Suggestions are encouraged.  Criticism will result in an army of minions beating down your door.  (Just kidding!)

You can also email me at
Crossdressers-wmi@hotmail.com

The Grand Illusions website is at:
http://www.crossdressersmichigan.com

SUCH FUN!

Billie