Archive for the ‘Language and the body’ Category

Two faces

October 17, 2021

(men’s bodies, references to sex between men, so inadvisable for kids and the sexually modest)

From ads in my e-mail recently, these two male faces, with (lots of) context removed:

(#1)

(#2)

The question is how we read these faces, what we see in them, and that turns out to be an enormous question, in part because our responses are a compound of  many different kinds of judgments, all of which are complex and variable in themselves.

The faces are not without context. They are, to start with, faces in poses (these faces are in static photos; if we had them in motion, there would be even more information to cope with).

Suppose we got them in a neutral pose, facing the camera. What we’d be looking at then would be a compound of a basic face overlaid by a facial expression, and we’re accustomed to assigning an interpretation to both of these things. And these interpretations are essentially never unique.

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From the culture desk: admirable words, admirable things

September 2, 2021

(Plain-spoken appreciative references to penises and fellatio, plus an extended and explicit man-on-man sex scene, so not appropriate for kids or the sexually modest.)

Gastronomy, essays, calliphallicity, poetry. Starting with the New Yorker on 9/6/21 — “Food & Drink: An Archival Issue” — in a “Gastronomy Recalled” column there. From the print magazine, the head and subhead for the piece:


(#1) From the great gastronomic essayist M. F. K. Fisher

Then from the on-line magazine, this version, with the accompanying photo (by Carl Mydans / The LIFE Picture Collection / Shutterstock) and its caption:

(#2)
One does not need to be a king to indulge his senses with a dish.

But, with my imperfect aged eyes — I now misread things so often I’ve pretty much stopped cataloging my errors — and my penis-attuned brain — I am an unapologetic phallophile —  what I read was:

One does not need to be a king to indulge his senses with a dick.

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Briefly noted: famous or heinous?

August 30, 2021

Caught in passing on tv, a reference to heinous crimes in which the /h/ of /hénəs/ was so brief that the pronunciation came very close to /énəs krájmz/ anus crimes. I reflected for a moment on what those might be, passing over the obvious and distressing possibility ‘anal rapes’ to consider merely improper alternatives, like farting in public, or crimes that were only figurative, like anal bleaching, that crime against fashion.

But then my attention was caught by the rhyming phrase heinous anus, and I fell into musings about meanings for the expression — see below — until Famous Amos hit me (notes on Wally and his celebrated cookies further below). Oh my, now I had

the Famous Amos heinous anus

and my day was complete.

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Sweetly earnest and pleasantly gay

August 29, 2021

(A posting that dwells analytically, but also lovingly and in detail, on men’s bodies and man-man sex, so it’s thoroughly unsuited for kids and the sexually modest.)

Sweetly earnest and pleasantly gay, also, a superhunky muscle bottom (descriptors the man himself laughingly accepts as compliments); a “voracious bottom” (or eager receptive, to put it in more distanced technical terms), as an interviewer put it a while back; and something of a queen (a descriptor he occasionally uses of himself as well as the other “queens in recovery” in his alcoholism support group). This is gay pornstar Beau Butler, who appeared earlier on this blog in my 5/3/21 posting “With knitted brows”, because brow-knitting is one of his Serious Faces, frequently displayed during sex with other men, in particular while he’s being pronged by a Raging Stallion co-worker on a mensroom sink in the porn flick Show Hard. I write co-worker because though Butler is indeed an eager receptive, both personally and professionally, he also views his sex work as a job — requiring specialized skills, attention to the tasks at hand, and teamwork, and following demanding routines and schedules — a job that he approaches with a serious work ethic.

Butler gets another blog posting because of the way he looks — amiably faggy — in a Raging Stallion e-mail ad (for the flick The Territory) that came to me on 8/27 (without identification of the actors in it). And that opens the way for more musing on gay male identities and personas; and more musing on the way personal and social lives are structured in the making of gay porn.

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Annals of phallicity: the Bezos rocket

August 27, 2021

(Well, the topic is phallicity, and there will be anatomical details — discussed with anatomical terminology rather than street language, but some might still find the posting edgy.)

The story is a month old, but interest in its central element, a rocket to space, is evergreen. And the imagery of this particular rocket, Jeff Bezos’s New Shepard, was fresh and noteworthy.

The symbolic resonance, of a rocket launch to active phallicity, to a penis rapidly tumescing and ejaculating, has been around ever since there have been rockets, but New Shepard makes a significant advance towards realism in this symbolic domain: the rocket looks a lot more like a penis than the rockets that have launched before it.

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Kiss my nuts, Sunny!

August 26, 2021

(There will be man-man sexual acts, frivolously though accurately described, so probably not suitable for kids or the sexually modest.)

From Alex Elliott on Facebook this morning: the bag of cherries, with an illustrated ad on it, plus Alex’s comment:


(#1) AE: This bag of cherries has one of the most unsettling commercial illustrations I think I’ve ever seen.

Ah, naughty nutkissing (aka ballkissing), which rapidly leads the practitioner into the abominable vice of nutsucking (more commonly called ballsucking). In any case, lips and testicles are (symbolically) involved in a way you don’t expect in a grocery store.

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Pretty in neon pink

August 26, 2021

(Generally on the raunchy side, though not actually obscene — but too heavy with sex toys (including some truly alarming dildos) and anal talk for kids and the sexually modest, who should stay away.)

Very late for one of my favorite holidays, National Underwear Day (8/5), this Daily Jocks ad on 8/25:


(#1) [ad copy:] Get party ready with the DJX Trough Jockstrap. Featuring a dual-layered breathable pouch, which is as soft to the touch as it is enhancing. You won’t want to take these off. [oh honey, yes you will, yes you will]

First, some AMZ verse; then an olla podrida of neon pink jockstrap-related topics.

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Sexual notes from 6/5

August 25, 2021

(Pretty much solidly about man-man sex, in particular anal sex in various entertaining positions, described in street language and plainly depicted in images from gay porn, so this posting is off-limits for kids and the sexually modest. It’s also an act of loving remembrance, but there’s no getting around that it’s dense with coupling, penetration, and ecstatic faces.)

Originally intended for posting on 6/5, right after I got ads for gay porn featuring HOT ASIAN COWBOY — which I at first took to be a hybrid of two subgenres of such porn, Asian guys and cowboys. On 6/5, my man Jacques’s death day, an occasion for reminiscence, in this case of our sexual lives together; our sexual lives evaporated about 25 years ago (a long time for memory), and though during and after our time together I wrote quite a lot about sex between men, a substantial amount of it about my own experiences (viewed analytically), I neglected to say much about the specifics of our everyday sex in a similar way. I took it for granted.

I’m working on recovering memories, but so much is gone. What I do have, easily available, is the stuff that plugged into HOT ASIAN COWBOY back on June 5th, and that’s what I’m writing up today.

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But what does his chest hair MEAN?

August 22, 2021

On 8/19, a posting about the novelty song “Harry’s Jockstrap” from 50+ years ago — a jock that’s pale blue, suggesting that Harry is a fairy:

Harry’s jockstrap, Harry’s jockstrap
It’s pale blue, it’s pale blue
They say that he’s a fairy. But Harry is so hairy
So are you, so are you

… [The verse] suggests that Harry’s hairiness shows that he couldn’t be queer, presumably because, the singer believes, significant body hair is a sign of masculinity, and that’s incompatible with homosexuality. The whole thing is silly beyond belief; the world is rich in hairy fairies … Though I do understand that hairiness as a litmus for straightness is a widely held folk belief, a consequence of the powerful folk theory that homosexuality is literally sexual inversion, so that gay men are, by definition, feminine, in fact a species of female.

So far, some folk associations; there will be more:

— 1 a man’s wearing pale blue clothing (or, more generally, pastel clothing), especially underwear, especially a jockstrap, INDICATES homosexuality

— 2 heavy body hair on a man, especially on the chest, INDICATES high masculinity, which in turn INDICATES heterosexuality

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Harry’s Jockstrap

August 19, 2021

(Well, yes, jockstraps, depicted and described, with attention to their contents, so not to everyone’s taste.)

In a comment on my 8/15 posting “Jock Robin” (a posting about jockstraps in beautiful colors, masculinity, and sexuality), Mike McManus  noted the relevant novelty song “Harry’s Jockstrap” (a jock that’s pale blue, suggesting that Harry is a fairy),  a burlesque on the French nursery rhyme (and round) “Frère Jacques”. I had somehow missed “Harry’s Jockstrap”, but here it is, in all of its pale blue fairy glory:

Harry’s jockstrap, Harry’s jockstrap
It’s pale blue, it’s pale blue
They say that he’s a fairy. But Harry is so hairy
So are you, so are you

(Call this verse HJ.) The burlesque goes on and on through many more verses; I’ll give you a transcription and a recording of the whole thing — but first, some background. (more…)