Wednesday, May 29, 2013

There are no love songs with the word clit in the title.

Some x-rated content follows.

Here's something that bugs me greatly about our PC culture. And I'm prepared for the fact that what I say will irk, perhaps even disgust, some of you. (Or you may just dismiss me as an uncommonly puerile case of arrested development.) But think about it a second before you give me a cliched answer. This is all I ask. Or maybe I should have the impossibly debonair Bob Goulet croon that last line, since it's sort of apropos here:


(Gotta love the cigarette. Man have times changed.)

We can come to work and talk openly and gleefully, in front of one and all, about "being pregnant." "Oh my God, I can't believe it, we finally got pregnant!" All will rejoice...the gals in particular will gather 'round and talk ad infinitum about due dates, comparing notes on their own experiences of pregnancy and labor...the guys will offer polite congrats before quickly segueing to last night's ball game...no one will be offended. But we can't talk openly about how one gets pregnant. Or just the general flavor (pun intended) of sex.

"You wouldn't believe it, last night we went at it three times, must've left a wet spot on the mattress the size of Lake Erie. And man, did we both smell ripe this morning when I lifted the covers! So we had to go at it again! It was so effin hot!"
You can't say that at work, certainly not in front of just anyone. But to repeat, if a few months or so from now that glorious liaison results in a fetus, you can come to work and exult about it as much as you damn please. In front of everyone. So what's the message here?

The message here is that the baby is good and wholesome...but the sex is bad and ugly and must remain unspoken. It's as if we'd like to pretend that all conceptions are "immaculate."

Here is where my detractors will say, as one, "Come on, stupid, it's simple good taste."

Oh, I get it: Again, sex is in poor taste, but babies are just fine. How does that not communicate and reinforce the notion that sex is the unseemly part of marriage (or relationships in general)?

In the same way, (mainstream) love songs must be about moonlight, kissing, hand-holding and general togetherness, and can hint at physical hunger, butat least if you want to get Top-40 playcannot openly reference oral sex or orgasms or any of the other explicit joys of intense physical love. Although here I've embedded Trent Reznor's memorable vid on his classic single Closer, which veers into highly sexed terrain, I consider this, like most of Reznor's work, more about anger and disaffection than about than sex per se:


(And, of course, on Top-40 radio, they bleep the operative word in the song's grittiest line. For an extra-special audiovisual experience, try this one, the director's cut. You may have to register as 18+. By the way, Closer is, for my money, the best single piece of music released during the 1990s.)

You will never hear a Brad Paisley tune that begins, longingly, "I miss her clit..." Or, somewhere in the Carrie Underwood version, "I remember warm summer nights, and his big thick manhood* moving slowly inside me..."

Why not? Is it not legitimate for Brad (or any other guy) to feel that way about the woman he loved and lost? Is it so wrong for Carrie to reflect on the raw sexuality that epitomized a warmly remembered love affair?

Evidently so. Instead we're limited to missing her hair or her laugh or her perfume (the one she buys in stores, that is; you can't have song lyrics that rhapsodize about a woman's natural perfume).

This pisses me off. More to the point, at the macro level, this Puritanism hurts society, stunts our growth, distracts us from our myriad real problems by creating whole categories of petty nonsense we supposedly must worry about (e.g. school districts' silly attempts to ban those "Boobies" bracelets and "Ta-Ta" tee-shirts kids wear to promote breast cancer awareness). Our hypocritical love/hate relationship with sex only serves to create issues where there need be none. (It also changes our perspective on smart, capable leaders like Bill Clinton and Anthony Weiner. You might be able to persuade me that this is a separate argument, but surely it's related.) And think how much money has been wasted in absurd awards and legal fees stemming from supposed "hostile environment" infractions in the workplace. I've known a number of women who liked sex a whole lot better than they liked babies. To them, the sex-talk would be just fine, thank you; it's all that inane baby-banter that constitutes the real hostile environment.

So... Now that gays, at long last, are out of the closet...can we finally let sex itself out of the closet?

* and here, I wimped out and chose manhood over cock. I should not have.

12 comments:

RevRon's Rants said...

Okay, Steve... let's add a dash of REAL perversion to the mix. You can say the word "eviscerate" at any time and in front of any audience without so much as an eyebrow being raised. You can even show graphic representations of someone being disemboweled on broadcast television during the dinner hour. But let go with one F-word or show a split-second shot of a woman's nipple, and you're looking at a collective nationwide chorus of "harrumph" and a big, fat fine.

IMO, to allow the description and depiction of an act of horrific violence, while condemning a common if crude term for the most intimate act in which humans can engage speaks not only to incredible puritanism, but to a sickness that goes way beyond mere hypocrisy.

I mean, who feels that the graphic violence actually enhances otherwise interesting shows like CSI or Criminal Minds? I never got upset at my kids seeing a breast or butt in an R-rated film, but when someone appeared on the screen with a chainsaw or bloody butcher knife, I figured it was time for ME to watch something else, to say nothing of my kids.

And on that note, you and I should probably split a plateful of bran muffins (or have some of those "special" brownies) before the veins in our foreheads pop out too badly and we suffer a stroke. :-)

Steve Salerno said...

Ron, could not agree with you more. (Hey, have you seen the bootleg photos of the Travis Alexander autopsy? [Jodi Arias case] She all but eviscerated the dude...)

hubris said...

Sensational, vicarious violence on a screen excites the passive spectator in a way that a glimpse of nipple no longer manages, for all that the masses are noisily scandalised by the glimpse.
The screen violence ultimately shifts product.

The result of real violence, up close and bleeding out has an entirely different, potentially attitude changing effect.
The constant diet of screen violence is about selling stuff, ideas, attitudes in a militarised society.
The fact that more war veterans later commit suicide than actually get killed in the wars testifies to the damaging effects of prolonged and/or repeated exposure to real violence.

Reality is a bitch, but I for one prefer it to the alternative of being constantly sold crap through vicarious violence.

RevRon's Rants said...

I managed to miss the pics, Steve. I've seen all the autopsies (and ravaged corpses) I want to see in this life, and then some.

Jenny said...

I couldn't agree more, Steve. Somebody or a bunch of somebodies need to keep swinging that wrecking ball in the general direction of "polite" discourse and destroy it. Puritan prudity (and all its accompanying neuroses) is keeping us shackled to a past that is saturated in religious superstitions and myths that grew stale a long time ago.

One of my favorite quotes from Stephen King comes to mind. It's from his memoir, On Writing. "There are lots of would-be censors out there, and although they may have different agendas, they all want basically the same thing: for you to see the world they see... or to at least shut up about what you do see that's different. They are agents of the status quo. Not necessarily bad guys, but dangerous guys if you happen to believe in intellectual freedom.”

Hi, Connie and Ron!

Jenny said...

Is this not just a mathematical equation, rather simple math, something along the lines of input and output, cause and effect? Conversely, think about an opposite equation involving output and input where the "input" is a gourmet meal in a fancy restaurant, the "output" the usual result of dining, which is digestion followed by elimination. We may talk about the great dinner we enjoyed but usually don't wax poetic over the brilliant shit we took and the wierd-smelling urine we produced (because of the asparagus we ate) later on. I won't illustrate; you can fill in the blanks. :) Seems to me a similar yet different example of socially acceptable (and unacceptable) discourse. I won't even go into our cultural norms for belching.

Steve Salerno said...

So the baby is the "shit"? Or the sex is?

Jenny said...

Yeah, like I said, simple math. :) Getting to the root of anger might be a good way to explore the true nature of life. From my perspective, people who aren't pissed off just aren't paying attention. Rape angers people who don't rape and yet what is at the very core of rape? Anger. Violence also seems to spring from an angry center, so why aren't people looking a lot more critically at anger? There's self-help for ya!

I came across a line in a novel that amused me. The book is Dark Places by Gillian Flynn. At one point, her protagonist Libby proclaims, "I don't trust self-helpers." In one scene, Libby has a one-night stand."After sex, after he fell asleep, I started nosing around his room, and found that his desk was covered with sticky notes: 'Don't sweat the small stuff, it's all small stuff. If only we'd stop trying to be happy we'd have a pretty good time. Enjoy life -- no one gets out of here alive. Don't worry, be happy.' To me, all that urgent hopefulness was more frightening than if I'd found a pile of skulls with hair still attached. I ran out in full panic, my underwear tucked up a sleeve."

Why are people so afraid to look more critically at what is considered the ugly underbelly of life? Our avoidance of it only prolongs our collective ignorance. I have one of these mothers who cringe at profanity. I slipped and said "fuck" in her presence recently and she just about withered. Seriously, why do some people insist on keeping things so positively cheerful? I hate that.

Anonymous said...

I read this post and looked back over the topics you cover on your blog, you are so juvenile. Is your whole point if you have one, shock value? What a stupid post, of all the subjects to cover. To think that some of your regulars think it's so thought-provoking!

RevRon's Rants said...

I'd like to invite anon to share a link to his/her blog, so that we could all benefit from what he/she must believe to be a more pertinent range of topics.

If his/her only contribution to the discourse is limited to whining about others' offerings, I'll be glad to ignore the sniping, as it serves no real purpose.

Red said...

I think you may have been missing some key concepts such as dignity, respect for the sacredness of the human body, privacy, and the fact that human beings are more than the mere sum of their parts.

Of course, if none of this means anything to you, you would probably fit in quite well in a Huxleyan society. Orgy-porgy, anyone?

Steve Salerno said...

Red, your comment implies that there is something undignified (and not at all sacred) about sex...even about lovemaking, which is the context for this whole line of argument. How do you get from an act of love with your partner--albeit a very hot, intense act of love--to "orgy-porgy"?

Thanks for dropping by, however. I can understand your POV, which is surely the dominant one in our culture.