It starts with pillowcases and pillowslips, moves to pillow-beres or pillow-biers, and from there to pillow bears, and also pillow-biters — the scourge of Australia, a continent famously “swarming with raving shirt-lifters and pillow-biters”. And from there to gay pillowcases and throw pillows. And on to facial expressions during, ahem, receptive anal intercourse. Get into bed, and before you know it, you’re getting fucked, ecstatically. The scene evolves:

(#1) Gay Evolution Pillow Case (designed by Joe Monica) from Cafe Press: the evolution of mincing (color me purple, honey)

(There will be seriously racy pictures of mansex. But even without them, after the first part, this posting is not for kids or the sexually modest.)

Background: my posting of the 23rd, “pillowslip”, about pillowslip / pillow-slip / pillow slip as an alternative to the more common pillowcase / pillow-case / pillow case. In a follow-up to this on ADS-L, Shawnee Moon posted about discovering pillow-bier / pillow-beer / pillow-bear / pillow-bere as still another alternative (with an assortment of spellings).

OED2 has an entry bear n.4 (for an item entirely distinct from the ursine noun bear):

Forms: bere, bare, beereber, beier, bierbeer.

Obs. or dial. A case or covering for a pillow. Usually pillow-bere n., q.v. [citations from 1369 through 1850]

And then the OED3 (March 2006) pillow-bere entry:

pillow-bere n. [ < pillow n. and bear n.4]

Forms: pilleber, phillaber, pyllow pyre, billow bear, pillibear, pillyber, pillo-bow, pillowber, pillowbar, pillow beard, pillaber, pelowes bear, plowes beere, pillowes biere. pillow bearer. [note several folk-etymologizations in this list]

Now Eng. regional (north.) and U.S. regional. = pillowcase n. [citations from the Canterbury Tales on, through the centuries to these:]

1849 Hamilton (Ohio) Telegraph 25 Oct. 4/1 In the cars we got, with our shift of raiment in a band-box and pillow-bier.

1885 ‘E. Lyall’ In Golden Days II. x. 211 A pillow-beer — friend of many a weary journey — lay hard by.

1932 Dial. Notes 6 283 Piller bier or pillow bier, heard as late as 1916 [in Connecticut] instead of pillow case or pillow slip.

2002 Irish Times (Nexis) 6 Mar. 26   A pillow-bere is a pillow slip in England’s north country.

An ursine pillow bear. Larry Horn responded on ADS-L:

 I do like “pillow-bear”, but the term is unfortunately ambiguous:  cf. [Ravelry link,]

which has a pillow bear (a pillow in the shape of a bear) crocheted by Mari-Liis Lille]:

On the pillow-biter patrol. Larry added, playfully:

And while “pillow-bier” does pull up the correct definition at various online sites, Google — raising a skeptical eyebrow — asks me whether I meant pillow-biter, this being a technical term of which I was previously unaware.

Some of us wondered how Larry could have lived such an innocent life to this point. Strictly speaking, pillow-biter isn’t a technical term, but a crude homophobic slur. From GDoS:

pillow-biter (also pillow chewer) [the supposed agonies of anal intercourse] (orig. Aus.) 1 a homosexual, usu. the passive partner, [first cite from Humphries 1985]

We are to suppose that being penetrated anally is not only degrading and demeaning to a man but also so excruciating that a man abused this way would have to bite on the pillow of the coital bed, to keep from screaming out in pain (compare: “Here, bite on this piece of wood while I perform surgery on you without an anesthetic”). This is far from the experience of gay men in general — who do, on the other hand, find the pillow-biter stereotype both insulting and injurious.

But on to Les Patterson, who wrote, in his 1985 book The Traveller’s Tool:

(#2) Sir Leslie Colin Patterson, on the cover of his book

I’m a man’s man and I call a spade a spade, so if you’re a blue-nosed wowzer, a raving pillow-biter or a loony old lezzo with a face like a half-sucked mango, I’d chuck this book away now because in the pages that follow I employ the direct, no-holds-barred lingo of a serious Australian diplomat at the top of his profession and the height of his sexual powers.

And very succinctly:

Australia is swarming with raving shirt-lifters and pillow-biters.

Well, yes, this is all wildly outrageous and deliberately offensive. Les Patterson is actually one of the personas of Barry Humphries, the “Australian comedian, actor, satirist, artist, and author” (from my 1/27/16 posting “Bruce Bruce Bruce”), and the GDoS Humphries 1985 cite for pillow-biter above is in fact the “raving shirt-lifters and pillow biters” quote above.

(On shirt-lifter, see my 9/23/09 posting “Lifting shirts”.)

About the Patterson character, from Wikipedia:

Sir Leslie Colin “Les” Patterson (born 1 April 1942) is a fictional character created and portrayed by Australian comedian Barry Humphries. Obese, lecherous and offensive, Patterson is Dame Edna Everage’s exact opposite: she is female, refined, Protestant and from Melbourne; he is male, uncouth, Roman Catholic and from Sydney.

Patterson’s humour abounds in such a wide range of racist and sexual stereotypes that it would offend almost anyone who takes it at face value.

Digression on gay pillow cases and throw pillows. A moment of bedding fun, before I turn to the hard-core sex stuff. There are plenty of sources of gay-themed bedding, including pillow cases and throw pillows. See #1 above for one excellent example. Then, also from Cafe Press, there’s:

(#3) Rainbow Paint Splatter Flag Pillow Case, designed by liveloudgraphics

And from Etsy, several sexy-men pillow cases, aimed at women and gay men, including:

(#4) Sexy Cowboy Pillow Case (link)

(#5) Sexy Campers Pillow Case (link)

And finally, from RedBubble, a throw pillow for pillow-biters, by drakewolfe:


Wait! A late cartoon entry, yesterday’s Funky Winkerbean (hat tip to Benita Bendon Campbell):

(#7) case-1, investigative, vs. case-2, a covering

The relevant subsenses, from NOAD:

case-1: an incident or set of circumstances under police investigation:

case-2: the outer protective covering of a natural or manufactured object

Man in Pain? Finally, to the X-rated stuff, about the experience of being fucked, as it is evidenced in facial expressions, pillow-biting, loud cries, and the like — in gay porn, where I have plenty of illustrations to hand, and also in real life, where I have only personal experience to report.

First, on facial expressions in sex. I’ve written a number of times on the subject, noting three characteristic expressions of men engaged in sex with one another: the Loving Buddy face, smiling and appreciative; the Man at Work face, focused and intent; and the Ecstatic face, with muscles tensed, mouth wide open or clenched, and eyes shut or unfocused.

The open mouth of the Ecstatic can arise in several other ways: there’s the open mouth of surprise or astonishment, and also the open mouth of the Man in Pain. Without further evidence, it’s hard to tell one from another. What are we to make of still photographs like these three (of prone fucks, with the bottom face-down):

(#8) Loving Buddy top, bottom with spread lips and cleched teeth, on the pillow

(#9) Man at Work top, bottom biting the sheet

(#10) Man at Work top, open-mouthed bottom

(Incidentally, #9 and #10 are nice compositions.)

The photos are all from gay porn, and all three depict fucks that are presented as deeply pleasurable to the bottoms. In the genre, bottoms come to these encounters eager to be fucked; or with some degree of reluctance, all the way up to solid resistance, which, however, dissolves into wild enthusiasm after they’ve been penetrated. Basically, you either know that you want it, or soon discover that you do. At the most, there’s some momentary discomfort until you open up to your fucker, and then you get all those good sensations and emotions. What might look like pain to an outside observer, you’re experiencing as an oceanic wave of intense pleasure.

That’s the on-screen fantasy version. But like other on-screen fantasies, it’s not unrelated to real life. I’ve been there, mostly on the bottom, and mostly as an Ecstatic.

Of course, in both on-screen and real life encounters, some guys are Loving Buddies, and a great many are Men at Work, that being pretty much the default (it’s a guy thing).

One final pillowcase, with a pair of Tom of Finland Men at Work at an early stage in their encounter, when they’re still negotiating where it’s going to go. Two hard, masculine types with a weakness for satin and a fondness for kissing.

(#11) Tom of Finland Face to Face Satin Pillowcase from Artspace

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