September 18, 2006
An article on Salon by Heather Havrilesky about the current season of Survivor, in which teams are broken down by race, contains this hilarious account of the depravity of European-Americans:
A member of the white tribe steals a chicken from a member of the Asian tribe, and is unrepentant, saying later, “I saw a chicken, I grabbed a chicken, because the chicken was free.” Upon arriving on their island, the white tribe members congratulate one another on “kicking ass” and grabbing so much good stuff so quickly. Later, while chatting about her nickname, one of the tribe members accidentally sets both of the two chickens free. The tribe members chase the chickens, but can’t catch them, and the guy who stole the chickens is extremely angry. Later that night, the first night on the island, two of the cute young people, Adam and Candace, cuddle…. Is this really “Survivor,” or some kind of ominous fable depicting the rise and fall of Western civilization?
Apparently, Survivor has engaged in similar demographic hijinks in the past, like separating people by age or gender. You know what I’d like to see?
Survivor: Democrats vs. Republicans!
Episode 1:The Republican team attempts to annex the entire island in the name of Manifest Destiny (and Jesus). Someone immediately begins drilling for oil. The Republican women submit dutifully to the men, except the strident blonde one, who loudly proclaims that everyone on the Democratic side of the island rapes babies. When host Jeff Probst points out that the Democratic team has no babies, she sharpens a stick with her serpent-teeth and writes SLANDER: Lies from the Democratic Side of the Island, Which by the Way is Full of Baby Rapists Who also LOVE TERRORISM. Two male members of the Republican team build a “log cabin” and are promptly ostracized by the rest of the group, until it comes time to vote.
The Democratic team promptly breaks down into oppressed minority groups, each with its own coalition. A debate ensues over whether to found a coalition for transgendered group members, even though no one in the group is transgendered. The deaf lesbian declares the area between the river and the westmost coconut tree to be a “safe space for women.” A debate ensues over whether, were the transgendered coalition to gain any members, those members would be welcome in the safe space for women. The discussion breaks down in the absence of a sign language interpreter, at which point the Democrats realize they are late for a Challenge against the Republican team. They promptly lose, while nevertheless agreeing that they are, once again, oppressed. Returning to their side of the island, the Democrats use palm fronds to build primitive computers and huddle together to develop their “netroots strategy.”
June 29, 2006
I scanned this page from Shape magazine. Shape magazine recommends that, in order to strengthen our inner thighs, we perform this exercise at the gym:
Lie flat on your back with your legs in the air! Now … spread them in a V! WHILE YOUR ANKLES ARE TIED TO WEIGHTED CABLES.
Note that the default position in this exercise — that is, the position in which you begin and the one you’d be stuck in if your muscles gave out — is “on your back with your legs held wide open by weights.”
Hope you’re flexible enough to be able to unshackle your own ankles from that position! Or else someone might have to “help” you.*
While getting raped at the gym, remember to contract your abs to really “feel the burn”!
I am gratified to live in an enlightened society that no longer believes that “She was asking for it by the way she was dressed” is a valid excuse for rape. However, I don’t know that we’re so enlightened that some judges wouldn’t go for “She was asking for it by the way she was lying on her back with her legs in the air, rhythmically flexing and spreading her thighs.”
*Hmmn, I wonder how many calories “getting raped” burns!
June 22, 2006
This is a traditional Hindu wedding between a woman and a King Cobra (the snake didn’t show, so a brass replica is standing in for him):
Dan Henninger on Fox News said:
A woman in India last week married a snake. I would like to ask the proponents of gay marriage–which violates, after all, traditions going back through all of human history–to now absolutely, positively guarantee that the next movement is not going to be allowing people to marry their pet horse, dog or cat. And you know What? Given the “anything goes” culture we live in, I don’t think they can deliver that guarantee.
Stephen Colbert’s response (we are “manning the barricades at Fort Marriage!”) is here.
According to the Khaleej Times, this was a love match, and Bimbala Das’s neighbors were delighted that she had fallen in love with a snake, because they believe the marriage will bring good luck to the village. (From an AFP story: “Snakes and particularly the King Cobra are venerated in India as religious symbols worn by Lord Shiva, the god of destruction.”)
Hrm. So the conservative argument is: if you can marry someone of the same gender, it’s a slippery slope to … snakes!
What I haven’t heard anyone mention is that alternatives to traditional marriage, however restrictive or weird, have long been sought out by gay people living in societies restrictive to gays. For instance, nunneries were at one time chock-full of (along with girls who’d gotten knocked up) women who simply couldn’t bear the thought of marriage to a man — so being a bride of Christ, along with lots of other chicks, seemed a suitable alternative.
Das says “Though snakes cannot speak nor understand, we communicate in a peculiar way. Whenever I put milk near the anthill where the cobra lives, it (the snake) always comes out to drink.” She will now live in a hut near the snake’s anthill.
Hrm…. Maybe Bimbala is pulling a fast one, no? Here are the choices — get married off to a man twice my age, be a slave to his jealous mother-in-law, have his kids, and do everything he says until he dies, after which, fortunately I won’t be burned alive, but I’ll still be considered basically useless; or … live by myself at this anthill! Do some embroidery, cook whatever I want, maybe get a Netflix membership….
…and maybe my best friend Priya can come over, scented with cardamom, and we’ll have privacy, glorious privacy, as long as we don’t get strangled by a cobra mid-cunnilingus.
January 24, 2006
In 2004, I had a profile on a modeling website, and I would sometimes receive offers to do porn. One time, I decided to write back. I was able to do so anonymously because it was clear that I had received a mass email, so if I wrote back from a different address, the porn producer would assume that my false identity had been on the list.The original email:
I am a producer for anew and innovative adult film company. I am looking for fresh new faces, some that dont look like they have been around the block. i need girls ages 18-30 for adult film modeling. how far you go is all up to you. Average pay is $1000-$2000per film which would include at least 2 scenes. In your response I would prefer a full body picture, but headshots are acceptable. If you do only send a headshot please describe body style. also, please let me know if you have any preferences such as only girl/girl, boy/girl, oral. let me know if you have any specialties as well. Females only! Also looking for fluffers. This is an easy way to make money ladies! i would pay for any expenses incurred while in LA.
I wrote back and decided to play naive. Also, since I was asked for “preferences,” I figured I’d come up with something:
Thank you for the email. I am interested in the adult film industry. I do have some preferences. Actually, it’s kind of weird. I can only have sex if the guy has a mustache. I don’t trust men who don’t have mustaches. Can you work with that? My favorite specialty is this thing I learned in India that the girls do with their elbows while they are turned around from behind. You have to see it to believe it! I recommend that everyone go to India.I have not seen many adult films. Can you recommend some titles so I can see what kind of work you do?What is a fluffer?
that sounds kind of kinky! please provide a picture of yourself, preferably a full body shot. also, where are you located? is there anything you would not be willing to try, besides a guy without a mustache?
Somewhere in here, there was also an email about whether I could provide female friends to act as fluffers. Also at this point, I figured I’d better come up with a picture, so I sent him the only naked-lady photo on my desktop — one of a girl who had hit on me on Nerve, wanting to arrange something with herself, her boyfriend, and me (never happened). But since she was freely sending her naked pictures to total strangers, I didn’t feel too bad forwarding this one. I did feel I had to explain her grooming preferences:
Hi, here is a picture I took of myself in the mirror. Do I need to shave my pubic hair? My boyfriend is French. He likes it all bushy. You know how the French are. Um, I’m sure there’s stuff I wouldn’t be willing to try, like animals or something. I’m not sure, what kind of things are you thinking of? Also, can you recommend some movies that show what kind of stuff you make?About the fluffers — if the girls are off-camera, why do they have to be good looking? I have a couple of friends who might do it but one is fat and the other one isn’t very attractive. She has nice tits but they’re fake.
Although the photo was believably candid, the porn producer wanted further proof.
hey what is your name? is that really you in that picture? you have an innocent look to you which is perfect for what i’m looking for. what i’m thinking about is having innocent looking young girls and older men. i’m talking about men in their 40’s. so its nothing that extreme like animals or anything. when i asked what you wouldnt be wiling to do i meant like oral sex or something. and just to make sure thats really you in that pic send me a couple of pics in which you’re wearing clothes holding a sign that says hi.
Since I couldn’t comply with this request, I never wrote back. (Also, I never succeeded in getting him to send me a list of porn film titles that he recommended as “research”). That was in 2004. Today, I receive this:
hey i just saw that i still had this email… would you still be interested?
Hey, thanks for the email. Actually, I am working with an adult film company now. They make retro-seventies type films, all wood-paneling, men with hairy chests — and mustaches! I’m actually shooting tomorrow for ‘Mustache Rider XIII – The Handlebar Incident.’”
Photos are of Ryan Scott, who won a mustache contest.
June 7, 2005
This appeared in Virginia’s Daily Press newspaper on Monday, May 30.
May 17, 2005
I saw a cafe in Brooklyn called “Le Petit Gout.” I looked up the word “gout” when I got home, and it means “taste,” which makes sense, but still — the gout? Gross. If people’s first reaction when they see your cafe is to think of a hideous swelling ailment, that might cut into your scone sales.
Le Petit Gout is certainly better then Le Grand Gout, but really, any gout is just too much gout. Ask a nursing home resident.
February 24, 2005
Dear Marketing Executive Who Names Shades of Pantyhose:
I know that I’ll never be “suntan.” Even when I actually have a tan, my legs are far, far paler than “suntan.” I grew up in Virginia Beach, where, despite the presence of the beach, everyone goes to tanning salons to darken up all the fat they’ve accumulated from eating too much barbecue.
If I’m not “suntan” (and I’m certainly not “mocha” or the colors that are even darker than that), it looks like “beige” and “ivory” are the next couple of notches down, but again, my skin is paler than both of those hues. I wouldn’t want to be “beige” — that would make my complexion sound like the old family computer or the waiting room at the DMV — but, apparently, I am lighter than “ivory.” Having never physically juxtaposed my legs to the tusks of elephants, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt on this one.
Your next lightest shade on offer is “nude,” which, in some kind of Aryan color hegemony, indicates “a color paler than ivory.” But even “nude” is too dark for my skin. Yes, I am that pale. But if my nude legs aren’t nude, what (or who) is? And what about all the other women, carmel and mocha-colored women, whose nude legs obviously aren’t your idea of “nude” either? Call the guys over at Crayola — they changed that whole thing about the crayon called “flesh” way back in 1962. Now, you can go to the store and get a box of sixteen special crayons called, literally, “Multicultural Crayons,” so you can color a little United Nations of variably-hued people. Take a hint!
Now that we have established that I am not suntan, beige, ivory, or nude, well … now what? I once dated a Mexican guy who commented that instead of saying I have a “snow-white” complexion, I could alternately say I was the color of salt, cocaine, or aspirin. (Dear Mexican guy: Thanks for the compliments!)
According to the package of pantyhose my mom bought me because she’s the same moon-like, blinding shade of talc (and your pantyhose matched her perfectly!), the color designation you have afforded me is: “oatmeal.”
I am oatmeal-colored. This is not sexy, Mr. Pantyhose Man. If dark-skinned women get to be “carmel” and “mocha” and “espresso,” I want to be “fresh milk” … or “Zinfandel.” Shredded coconut? Raw sugar? Throw me a bone here.
Your loyal customer,
October 6, 2004
Today I attended the first meeting of my fiction writing class. I am excited to see how my work will play among the over-55 crowd. Last time I took a daytime class, it seemed to be full of actors and waiters; this time it’s retired people.
This is by no means a complaint, as I enjoy interacting with people who remember decades of perhaps more import than the last few. But it’s also entirely possible that somebody will just be kind of miffed or offended.
Maybe I’ll just continue writing my usual R-rated fare and simply make all the characters septuagenarians.
“I’m not a lesbian,” said Mabel, swallowing. She had always been shy. “But maybe for you I could make an exception.”
Slowly, Hattie scanned up and down Mabel’s floral-clad figure. And in one swift movie, Hattie had Mabel’s wrists behind her back and was staring into her eyes with the intensity of stark-white cross stitch on black linen.
“You’ll be whatever I tell you to,” said Hattie. “I’ve been watching you since the very first night you came to bingo.”
Hattie’s hands were strong despite her arthritis, and her will was even stronger. Her grip on Mabel tightened, and Hattie’s face belied the slightest sly smirk.
I’ve been shrinking over the years, thought Mabel. I’ve gotten shorter. She looked up at Hattie, Hattie who was nearly five-foot-six in her Dr. Scholl’s pumps, whose hair was perfectly marcelled, whose silver cane was always polished to a pure, bright shine.
Mabel was scared. She trembled like a schoolgirl back when coyness was still a virtue; she shook like the three-layer gelatin ambrosia she always brought to her grandchildren’s birthdays.
I’ve always wanted to know what it was like, thought Mabel. She imagined the sapphic pleasures that lay ahead of her, the thoughts that had overtaken her mind ever since the first widows’ group meeting. She imagined everyone playing “strip support group,” wherein each lady had to remove an item of clothing for each time she shared about overcoming her loss. Of course you miss Walter, they would say. Now take off your girdle.
“We’re going to my room,” said Hattie.
“I’ll tell the nurse we’ll be playing Chinese checkers,” she continued, “and that we don’t want to be disturbed.”