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'' We have a certain decorum here in the South, so I just said thank you and turned away,'' she explains.
Still, she can't help being buoyed by their attentions. I've just been through so much lately.'' One morning last fall, thick in the worst of it, Addams twisted her hair in a chignon, smoothed on a simple gray suit and made the hourlong trip from Nashville to the Fort Campbell Army base on the Tennessee-Kentucky border.
Women were not allowed to wear make-up or colour their hair," she told Jane Hutcheon on One Plus One."Wearing gold was vanity, so my parents did not wear wedding rings."It was just a strange way to grow up." Discouraged from college because her parents believed "education led one away from God", Addams later joined the Navy.
She served in Al-Jubail, Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Storm as a specialist medic taking care of sailors, marines and prisoners of war.
Suffering from gender dysphoria from a young age, Addams felt that she should have been born female instead of male.
But the entertainer learned early in life that expressing herself resulted in punishment.
I just had hair in a ponytail and a clean face and jeans and a t-shirt and he accepted me and flirted with me a treated me like a lady and it was very exciting because one is so insecure in those early days."Yet their relationship was not without challenges, with Mr Winchell harassed by fellow soldiers for dating Addams.
we just want to participate in society."There is not a hint of bitterness in Addams, whose resilience, humour and compassion are all the greater for her life experience — making the world a sweeter place for many.
Calpernia Sarah Addams has just rebuffed two handsome men (and a not-so-handsome one) who offered her compliments as she hurried across Union Street in Nashville.
Of 71,570 soldiers surveyed, 80 percent said they have witnessed derogatory remarks being made against gays, according to a report released March 24.
Addams, among the first to arrive at the base, did not enter the small courtroom, which was reserved for lawyers and immediate family.