Archive for January, 2019

Suspended Christmas

January 31, 2019

(Thanks to a cascade of medical conditions that began at the beginning of this month and has consumed much of my time, I’m still working my way through Christmas-oriented postings. Better late, as they say. [And yes, the back-truncation better late is in my files.])

The classic vehicle for carrying Christmas ornaments is the Christmas tree, an up-standing object. But suspended vehicles are also possible: hanging baskets, for instance, or this festive arrangement in Virginia Transue’s dining room that takes advantage of a chandelier:


(#1) Virginia’s 2018 smilax chandelier, with ornaments

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Manly in Australia

January 30, 2019

(This posting ends up knee-deep in gay porn, so there will be references to men’s bodies and to mansex, though the X-rated visuals are off in my AZBlogX posting today “Manly Beach”. This material might not suit all readers.)

A Facebook exchange this morning:

Michael Newman [posting a photo on an antipodal vacation]: Notorious [venomous] funnel web spiders? — in Manly, New South Wales, Australia.

Arnold Zwicky: I long ago got used to the place-name Manly, but every so often I see it afresh and giggle.

Michael Newman: I couldn’t help thinking about it the whole time.

The history of the placename Manly is both straightforward and surprising. Manly and nearby Manly Beach then led me to the 1991 Kristen Bjorn gay porn flick Manly Beach (manly mansex among the manly lifesavers of Manly Beach) and to brief notes on facial expressions in gay porn.

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Hugo Simberg

January 30, 2019

(There will eventually be reproductions of religious artwork incorporating images of naked boys, genitals and all — the boys represent the disciples of Christ, and the artwork is a giant fresco in a (Lutheran) cathedral. Ok, the images are from Scandinavia, where attitudes about such things tend to be much more relaxed than they are in Anglo-American settings, and the artist almost surely chose prepubescent boys to represent the twelve apostles because he viewed such boys as innocents, free from sin. (In my experience, this is not even remotely an accurate view of the emotional and imaginative world of prepubescent boys, but I think we have to grant the artist a right to his idealizations.) I’ve chosen not to relegate these images to AZBlogX, in the hope that on WordPress they fall under the Fine Art Exemption for genital nudity, while understanding that they would almost surely be unacceptable on Facebook. In any case, if such images distress you, read on about Hugo Simberg’s gloomy artworks and then bail out when I get to The Garland Bearers.)

Thanks to Bernadette Lambotte and Joelle Stepien Bailard on Facebook, I was made aware of the Finnish artist Hugo Simberg and one of his most famous works, the deeply enigmatic The Wounded Angel (1903):

(#1)

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Greg Patton, dba Rod Phillips

January 29, 2019

Another chapter in the Lives of the Gay Pornstars, this time the story of Greg Patton (with his sometime boyfriend Bobby Pyron), who performed in porn in the 1980s under the name Rod Phillips (while Pyron performed under the name Lee Ryder). This posting is not particularly lubricious, but it is about male sex workers and does refer to anal sex between men, so it won’t be to everyone’s taste.

My interest is in how these men managed their lives in the porn business (separately and together), how they balanced their everyday lives — Pyron had a passion for flower arranging, Patton for jewelry design (how queer is that?) — with their careers in porn, and (insofar as this can be determined) how they coped with growing up in a largely hostile straight world and managed relationships with their families. The central question — one that has dogged me all my life, from early childhood on — is:

How, in these circumstances, does an anomaly like me fashion a life that is both decent and bearable?

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A camelid from darkest Peru

January 29, 2019

A souvenir from Juan Gomez, who visited Peru (Cuzco, Machu Picchu) with his family for the New Year’s holiday: a little stuffed llama I’ve named Glama Grrl (he’s seen here perched high in the spathyphyllum forest on my worktable):

(#1)

The Peruvian camelid has been exploited for all sorts of word play purposes, perhaps most famously in the light verse of Ogden Nash, but also in joking that turns on the fact that the element llam– has (at least) three separate sources in Spanish (referring to the camelid, to fire or flames, and to calling (out)). Glama Grrl will then lead us to the original traveler from darkest Peru, Paddington Bear.

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The party linguist

January 28, 2019

The 1/17 Wayno-Piraro collab on a Bizarro:

(If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 4 in this strip — see this Page.)

There’s a lot in this; I’ll start with the purely linguistic question: What does the N + N compound party linguist refer to? Then turn to the question of what’s happening in the cartoon, in particular how the notions of minority and diversity figure in it.

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Phil comes out

January 28, 2019

Stewart Matzek’s Amateur Hour Comics for Groundhog Day:

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Winter gardens

January 28, 2019

Tom Gauld’s cover art “Winter Garden” in the February 4th New Yorker:

(#1)

A lush indoor garden, in part representing a spring garden outside (narcissus, tulips), in part a garden fantasy (with huge trees, a parrot, a hummingbird).

Gauld — noted for his science-oriented cartoons and his goofily bookish ones — is an old friend on this blog (his Page is here). Meanwhile, here in northern California we’re going through our winter garden phases outside: a succession of spring flowers (narcissus of one variety after another, starting in December; flowering fruit trees starting now; tulips getting ready to bloom) plus specifically winter-blooming plants, like camellias and cymbidium orchids.

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Two specialist porn companies

January 27, 2019

(Though the X-rated images are elsewhere, this posting is about men’s bodies and mansex, in very plain language; it’s entirely unsuitable for kids and the sexually modest.)

Two new small gay porn sites offering high-quality videos for specialized audiences. The images here are cropped for modesty; the hard-core stuff, with uncensored dicks, is on my X blog, in yesterday’s posting “PeterFever and the GrowlBoys”.

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hunter gatherers

January 27, 2019

The Bizarro from 2/7/15, noted on Facebook today by Nancy Caplow, who commented, “Potentially ambiguous compounds; subtly different prosody”:

(If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 5 in this strip — see this Page.)

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