History of URNotAlone by Jon
This history of URNotAlone was originally written by Jon in 2012. It is included here to document the history of the URNA website.
Hi everyone, thought it might be nice to tell you a little something about Vicky and I, something about the history of URNotAlone. I’ll also tell you about Dan, without whom, URNotAlone would never have become what you see today.
Vicky and Jon: URNA Founders
We’re a couple and have been together since November of 1991. We used to live in Boston, downtown a few doors down from Jacques Cabaret. In June of 2009, we relocated to Hollywood, FL. We’re a typical couple, we love and care about one another deeply and we have a wonderful relationship. We have a monogamous relationship although, on occasion, we’ll share a playmate together.
About Jon @ URNotAlone
I was born and raised in the Boston area. I was born in November 1955. I’m 5’8″, 160lbs, with brown hair and hazel eyes, have a teenage daughter by a previous marriage. I see my ex and my daughter often. Love to travel, although these days, most of my work keeps me in Boston and life is pretty hectic so I don’t travel much these days.
Some of my favorite things include Single Malt Scotches, French Food, Cars, Science Fiction Books and Movies, hanging out at Jacques Cabaret. You might say it’s my “Cheers” where everyone knows my name. Dare I say Porno and, of course, TGirls. I’m normally a pretty quiet, introverted person around people I don’t know well. It takes me a while to loosen up and get talkative. I’m not really a people person, more of a thinker I guess.
As for my sexual preference, I don’t identify myself as gay. I’m obviously not straight. I like women and I like TGirls, so I guess that makes me bisexual? Funny, but I’m always asked about this and never really think about it unless asked. I guess my philosophy on this is, what difference does it make?
We only live once and if we can find something that makes us happy — something that doesn’t harm anyone else, we should just go for it. We shouldn’t question it. Nor should we care what other people think. We should just be thankful to have found something and someone who gives us pleasure and makes us happy. 🙂 Too many people spend too much trying to psychoanalyze themselves and too little time being themselves.
About Vicky @ URNotAlone
Vicky was born and raised in Puerto Rico and has lived in the Boston area since early 1980. She’s 5’7″, 130lbs., with brown, sometimes black, sometimes blonde hair and brown eyes. Vicky has been a Performer, hosting Latino Nights in some of the clubs in the Boston area, although she gave performing up a couple of years ago. She was a model for our other site, ModelTS (now defunct), she loves to cook, she’s not into cars at all:-). She loves dancing, traveling, and unlike me, Vicky is very extroverted, a social butterfly and a real people person.
Vicky loves Latin movies, fashion, make-up and educational shows amongst other things. As for Vicky’s sexual preference… she likes men and also likes to occasionally Transform a good-looking guy into a pretty girl for both of us to enjoy. 🙂
First let me say that I’m going to use the term TGirl to cover Crossdressers, Transvestites, Transexuals (Pre and Post), Drag Queens and all the other various terms that cover those that are part of the M2F Transgendered Community. I personally feel it’s the most generic term I can use and it’s the term I personally prefer to use. Forgive me if you don’t particularly care for this term or don’t feel that it covers what I feel it covers.
URNotAlone was born back in 1996. I wanted to learn how to build a website and was trying to think of a topic that would hold my interest. I’m not good at just playing around with things. I need a goal to get going. I was traveling quite a bit around this time and one of my friends suggested I start a listing of drag bars since I seemed to know where to find them in every city I traveled to. 🙂 It clicked and URNotAlone was born as a site to come to if you wanted to find out where the drag bars were in the cities you were traveling to. You can still find listings, and submit listings of your own, in the Places section of URNotAlone. I’d really like to see more people submit listings of Transgender Friendly Bars in their areas. They’re not easy to find when you’re a stranger in a strange town.
Evolution of URNotAlone.com
Within a month, I decided URNotAlone needed to be more than just a site that listed Drag Bars. Bear with me on this next part, it has real relevance as to what URNotAlone evolved into.
I grew up in the suburbs outside of Boston and didn’t really know where to find TGirls until well after I was already married. When I was younger I did encounter Trans Porno in porno shops and knew right away that it was something that I was strongly attracted to — very strongly attracted to. I started buying all the Trans Porno that I could find. Growing up in the suburbs with no knowledge of where to meet TGirls, I honestly thought that they were rare creatures so to speak and that I’d never actually have the opportunity to meet one.
Since I liked girls also, I got married and thought I’d be happy and that porno would be enough to satisfy me. It wasn’t. Eventually I heard about Jacques Cabaret (a long story) and got up the nerve to go there to meet real TGirls in the flesh. That was the beginning of the end of my marriage. Once I was with my 1st TGirl I knew that it was what I truly wanted and that I would never be happy unless I could have a relationship, a real relationship, with a TGirl.
Vicky, The Inspiration for URNA Profiles
Eventually, I was divorced and shortly after I met Vicky. We’ve been together ever since. The reason I gave you this history, is that the URNA Profiles section got started because I thought it would be a great way to help other admirers like myself avoid making some of the mistakes I did and to provide a place for TGirls and their admirer’s to meet one another. I thought and still think that this would allow fellow admirers to understand that there are lots of TGirls out there. And that they could have a real relationship with a TGirl. They could avoid marrying and then later divorcing and screwing up a girl’s life. Hopefully I’ve succeeded, at least in some small degree. 🙂
I found myself surfing the web more and more often, looking for pages of TGirls that were starting to pop up all over the web. Back then, I used Susana Marques Geocities TV/CD/TS/TG Directory quite a bit (thank you Susana). I loved her listings and thought to myself, wouldn’t it be nice if the links to different TGirls sites also had a picture and a little something about them along with the link. Then I started asking TGirls if they’d like to list their profiles with a picture on URNotAlone.com. This was mainly TGirls whose sites I happened across while surfing the web. Nicole Asahi (a real sweetheart), from Texas, was the first TGirl I asked and the first profile that was listed on URNotAlone. Once the profiles section was started, it took about a year for the site to really get going.
Vicky’s Pics on URNA
After the profiles section, we added a section of Vicky’s pics. Then came pics of some of the TGirls I met in the different bars I visited in my travels. Then came pics of our Green Iguana who passed away recently. Vicky’s pics were mainly on our other site, ModelTS (now defunct), with the exception of some of her pics in her galleries on URNotAlone. The pictures of TGirls from various bars I visited around the country has gone away since I don’t travel much anymore and they were getting pretty out of date.
In the beginning, I hand-coded all the pages and after several years of working my butt off trying to keep up. I almost threw in the towel around the beginning of 2000. I put an announcement on the main page or URNotAlone that it was becoming too much work, I had too little time and that the site would cease being updated and eventually go away. This was also around the time when Vicky and I were trying to get our other, adult site, ModelTS going and I was living on very little sleep. I found myself spending 20 to 30 hours a week working on URNotAlone, another 20 hours or so on ModelTS and on top of that, I have my real job, the one that pays the bills. 🙂
Dan @ URNotAlone.com
Around this time, Dan (praise Dan!), sent me an eMail offering his assistance. Some of the TGirls he knew from the clubs in Ohio, knew that he did web development for a living and asked if he could help me out and keep me from shutting down URNotAlone. We corresponded a bit. Dan showed me a mock-up of what he had in mind. I was ecstatic. He totally redesigned the site, bringing it from a static, hand-coded site to what you see today — a data-driven site that takes all the drudgery out of maintaining and updating it.
Now, instead of spending over 30 hours a week on URNotAlone, I spend closer to 20 hours per week, much of it answering emails, approving or not approving profiles, etc. Thanks to Dan, we added an Articles section, a Places section, Galleries, a Chat Room, broke down the profiles into categories and much more!
History of URNotAlone: Dan and Jon
Dan and I got together in June 2003 and many times since that first meeting and started planning for the future of URNotAlone. Part of what came out of this was combining my other site ModelTS (now defunct) into URNotAlone’s Adult Content Area. Part of this was to offset the cost of running 2 sites on 2 dedicated servers with 2 different hosting companies. Another reason for this is that quite a few of the ModelTS members were also active visitors to URNotAlone and many of the members also have profiles listed on URNotAlone.
The main reason we went ahead with the merge is in the hopes that the money generated from the ModelTS Adult Content Section of URNotAlone will allow us to add even more free features to the public area of URNotAlone. This included things such as calendars for profile owners to let people know where they’ll be and for performer’s to let people know where to see them. Escorts could let people know what cities they’ll be visiting, etc. We’ve also added a method to list profiles by proximity to a certain area so people can get a list of people in their area by means other than state or country. We’d like to add a better message board (forums) and lots of other features. Dan eventually left his job to devote full time to URNotAlone.
We wish to thank all of you for your support over the years and for your continued support in the future. 🙂
By Jon, June 7, 2012
History of URNotAlone – Pamela
Footnote: In February 2015 Jon sold URNA to me Pamela.
My intent is to build on the work of Jon and Dan. I want to personally thank both of them for all the support they have given our community over several decades. URNA is a very special place.
History of URNotAlone – Lori Lee
On November 17, 2021 URNA was sold to me, Lori, after the site experienced a catastrophic database corruption. My intent is to stay true to the core mission of URNA and continue to build on the work of Jon, Dan and Pam. URNotAlone is a huge part of transgender history on the internet and I want to see the site flourish and live long. I am appreciative of the hard work that went into building this site first by John, Dan and Vicky, and later by Pam. Pam was instrumental in recovering the database files so they could be reconstructed on a new platform.
URNotAlone is now part of a larger network of transgender sites and joins the TGGuide Chat Network.