Archive for September 25th, 2010

I don’t have pet peeves, I have whole kennels of irritation. –  Whoopi Goldberg

One of the things that makes individuals individual is that each has his own dislikes, and sometimes a behavior one person may find wonderful, useful or even polite may annoy another to no end.  Indeed, when one considers that we go through life trapped in these biological vehicles with only the woefully inadequate tool called “language” to communicate our thoughts to one another, it’s a wonder we aren’t all constantly at each others’ throats.  Today I’m going to talk about some of my sexual pet peeves; these aren’t aversions to particular sex acts as discussed in my column of August 16th, but rather things people do or say about sex that really get on my nerves.  I apologize in advance for the rather unladylike language I’m going to use today; when I think about these things “my goodness” just doesn’t cut it.

Yanking the Pillow Out:  So there I am on my back, either just penetrated or about to be penetrated, and the man reaches behind my head and yanks my pillow out.  What the fuck, over?  Why do a good 20% of men see nothing wrong with this?  Do they yank chairs out from under their dinner companions at restaurants as well?  Does it not occur to them that the reason I put the pillow there is because I FUCKING WANTED IT THERE?  As it so happens I suffer from vertigo, and lying absolutely flat on my back starts to make me feel dizzy within a few minutes (less than that if I’m being shaken back and forth); a pillow corrects that problem.  But even if I didn’t have that neurological issue, if in fact I just had the pillow there because I happen to like pillows, what gives him the right to yank it out without even asking permission?  My husband says they did it so I would lie flat, but this is a bullshit answer on two levels: 1) my hips and lower back are at the same angle whether the pillow is there or not; and 2) what makes him think it’s OK to force me to lie flat without my permission?  Because they absolutely never asked; they did it as nonchalantly as one would take a dropped item away from a cat.  Whenever a man who was otherwise nice did this I explained about the vertigo, but if he was already being a dick before that I just as nonchalantly took the pillow out of his hand and put it back where it was.

Hitler Moustaches:  When I was a lass we only trimmed our pubes during bikini season, and the guys were perfectly happy with that; all the nude models I saw had nice little neatly-trimmed patches as well.  But sometime in the ‘80s a shaving fetish became popular; my boyfriends’ men’s magazines devoted space to it every once in a while, and I am told some porno movies even had shaving scenes.  A guy once asked if I would shave my twat for him and I refused on the grounds that everyone else seemed to like it as it was.  But as time went by the shaved look became more and more popular, and by the time I started stripping in 1997 lots of girls were as bare between the legs as they were in kindergarten.  Well and fine for them; if they want to put up with chronic itching and yet another several-times-weekly hygiene chore it’s their getout and not mine.  I was never that hairy there anyhow, so I simply had electrolysis to remove the stuff that would’ve protruded from a thong and had done with it.  But other girls, apparently unable to decide between trimmed and shaved bare, opted for what they were pleased to call a “landing strip”, a narrow rectangle running up the middle of the natural hair zone.  What is the damned point?  Disregarding for a moment the uncomfortably phallic connotations of such a shape pointing upward from a woman’s crotch, what purpose is this Hitler moustache supposed to serve?  It doesn’t cover anything and it sure isn’t attractive; it’s the personal hygiene equivalent of a peg heel.  Please, honey, make up your damned mind; either shave your kitty or don’t.

The Misuse of the Word “Vagina”:  The vagina is that portion of the female genital organs which forms a muscular canal into which the penis fits during intercourse.  The term applies ONLY to this passage, which leads from outside a woman’s body to the cervix (which is the entrance to the uterus); it does NOT apply to any other part of the female genitalia, internal or external.  The external genitalia (labia and clitoris) are collectively referred to as the vulva.  But I have noticed an increasing tendency among adult men (who should know better) and even some adult women (who absolutely should know better) to refer to the vulva as a “vagina”; this is the exact equivalent of referring to the mouth as an “esophagus”.  Most common words such as “pussy” or “cunt” can refer to any part of the female genitalia other than the womb, but “vagina” is a medical term rather than a colloquial one and as such has a specific meaning.  I really hated it when clients trying to be polite said something like, “You have a beautiful vagina”; of course they meant, “You have a beautiful pudendum”, but I had to smile and thank them when what I actually wanted to say was, “Unless you have an arthroscope down there you don’t know what my vagina looks like, and neither do I; only my gynecologist has ever seen it, and she doesn’t seem overly impressed with its cosmetic appearance.”

As if this misuse isn’t bad enough, I have also noticed the rise in popularity (since Oprah Winfrey adopted it) of the childish-sounding term “vajayjay”, obviously derived from “vagina” but usually used to mean “vulva”.  If you want a colloquial term for the “lady parts” there are already plenty of them without having to use a baby-talk version of the wrong damned word. “Vajayjay”?  How old are you, ten?  Suffering Sappho, but I hate that term; I swear if any of my readers ever uses it in a reply I will edit it and replace it with the nice, cute, venerable, honest term “pussy”.

Vulgarity:  No, I don’t meant honest discussion of sex; that is not vulgar.  Nor is the use of one-syllable Anglo-Saxon words such as shit, fuck, cunt, cock, etc which were in normal usage until the Norman overlords of England turned their noses up at them due to their peasant origins.  No, when I speak of vulgarity I mean leering, childish, dirty-sounding “euphemisms” for sexual acts and body parts which are actually much more offensive than just using the four-letter words.  Even worse are juvenile masculine attempts at “humor” derived from describing sexual terms in the most disgusting way possible.  As regular readers know I’m the farthest thing in the world from a prude, but this kind of filthy talk makes me want to slap the speaker and then wash his mouth out with soap.

The Term “Homophobia”:  A phobia is a psychological aberration characterized by a morbid, irrational fear of something.  Many people have a strong respect for thunderstorms which borders on actual fear, but keraunophobia is a pathological, debilitating dread of thunderstorms which is out of proportion to any actual danger they might pose.  The name for a phobia is formed by the Greek name for a thing attached to the suffix –phobia (fear); thus, ailuros (cat) + phobia = ailurophobia, fear of cats; paedos (child) + phobia = paedophobia (fear of babies and young children), and homos (same) + phobia = homophobia (fear of monotony or sameness).  What’s that you say?  “Homophobia” doesn’t mean a fear of monotony?  Au contraire, mes amis; that is precisely what it means.  Queer activists have take a word with a specific, established psychological definition and used it to mean something it does not mean.  Even their method of formation is totally wrong; one simply can’t break a Greek prefix off of a word and use it to stand for the whole word.  If one could, “homophobia” could also be used to mean “fear of homophones” or “fear of homogenized milk.”  But it doesn’t.  “Acrophobia” does not mean “fear of acronyms”, “androphoia” does not mean “fear of androids”, “gymnophobia” does not mean “fear of gymnasiums” and “homophobia” does not mean “fear of homosexuals”.

There is a proper term for this phobia, but I can’t remember it and it’s essentially impossible to find on the internet with Google’s non-Boolean search engine (if any psychological professional could look it up in a textbook I’d be grateful).  But even if that proper term were used, what queer activists term a “phobia” actually isn’t.  Mere dislike or discomfort does not a phobia make; I can’t stand spinach but I’m not terrified of it!  Nor does hatred always derive from fear, no matter what the pop psychologists tell you; fear is only one of several possible reasons for hatred.  We don’t call misogyny “gynophobia”; they’re different psychological states.  I’m sure that many people who dislike homosexuals do indeed fear them, but others simply dislike them, lack respect for them, disapprove of their behavior or even find them disgusting.  And many others disagree with their political agenda without feeling any particular animosity toward them whatsoever.  Yet, all of these people are routinely labeled “homophobic”, which probably 90% or more of them are not.  I think queer activists do this for two reasons: 1) Pretending their political opponents suffer from a “phobia” is the same as saying they’re mentally ill; and 2) Pretending their opponents are “afraid” of them is a way for them to build up their fragile male egos.  A man whose enemies fear him has power over them; one whose enemies look down on him as unmasculine does not.  So they of course pretend the former, when the truth is probably more often the latter.

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