Archive for the ‘Signs and symbols’ Category

Hiding homosexuality: JCL

July 10, 2020

Via Pinterest today, a story from the Messy Nessy site, “Hiding Homosexuality on the Cover of America’s Magazines a Century Ago” from 2/5/19, about illustrator and commercial artist J.C. Leyendecker (1874-1951), with more examples of his work beyond the ones that have already appeared on this blog.

Three steamy high-masculinity examples follow:

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Pretty, and sometimes protuberant, in pink

July 4, 2020

(Largely about men’s bodies — not crudely, but the topic will be uncomfortable for some readers, so be warned that skin and bulges are on the agenda.)

From Romania, through the fabled sensuality of Greek islands in the Aegean, to you: men’s swimwear that embraces playful pinkness while pushing enhancements of male genitals forward. The Elia swimwear company, in a series of ads on the Daily Jocks site.

Starting with the DJ ad from 6/8, for the Kos Titan Swim Short in the Beach Unicorn pattern:


(#1) Real men flaunt their stuff in pink, with little ducks

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A hose in your pocket

July 1, 2020

This is a piece of moderately raunchy silliness in a time of great difficulty. (I am trying, with increasing desperation, to write just one blog essay a day as proof that I’m Not Dead Yet, but I didn’t manage it yesterday, 6/30.) Most of it is directly or indirectly about penises, so some readers might want to avoid this posting.

A tv commercial for the Silver Bullet Hose proclaims:

Things that used to be big and bulky now fit in your pocket. Even your hose.

The commercial goes on about hoses and nozzles in gee-whiz fashion; it’s probably just enthusiastic salesmanship, but it would be hard to miss the playfully carnal subtext, of symbolic penises.

And the commercial extols the compact and easily portable, in the garden hose world — and, by extension, in the world of men’s bodies. As the possessor of a penis that fits comfortably into most trouser pockets, I applaud the attitude. All praise to the right-sized; let’s look to Michelangelo’s David.

A crucial part of the garden hose pitch is that the Silver Bullet expands to an impressive length when it’s called upon to perform its function. Oh. My.

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Flowers and a watch

June 19, 2020

… not to mention insects. And mortality.

From Hana Filip on Facebook, this extraordinary still life by 17th-century artist Abraham Mignon:


(#1) Still Life with Flowers and a Watch (c. 1660 – c. 1679) — Hana adds: “and a snail, a caterpillar, a thingy with big wings, butterflies …”

Still lifes are almost never just attractive arrangements of objects, but resonate with sociocultural meanings of all sorts; they’re about us. This Mignon, especially so.

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Roll my log for Pride

June 13, 2020

(Well, it’s Tom of Finland, so pretty much saturated with the worship of men’s bodies, especially their genitals, and allusions to, or outright depiction of, incredibly enthusiastic mansex. But no actual genitals are shown or described here, or any mansex either; use your judgment.)

In yesterday’s mail, a 2020 Pride postcard from Ryan Tamares, from the Tom of Finland store:

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Conceptually artistic dicks

May 10, 2020

(Consider the title: not for kids or the sexually modest.)

In today’s AZBlogX posting “VT’s Banksy’s Magritte”, two Vadim Temkin take-offs on a Banksy take-off on a Magritte — one, in the negative, like the Magritte original; the other, in the positive, as in the Banksy take-off — but both with artistic representations of penises that make them off-limits for this blog (and that itself becomes a topic for discussion).

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With spear, shield, robe, and wreath

May 6, 2020

… Helvetia stands guard over the Matterhorn, and by extension, all of her Swiss domain, in this excellent poster (source still untraced):


(#1) Not only the Matterhorn in the background, but also the shields of the 22 cantons of the time when the poster was published (I point to the Zwicky-Canton, Glarus, with its figure of Fridolin, the patron saint of the canton)

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Easter eggs 2020.1: Mussorgsky chicken with crocuses

April 10, 2020

The first of two entertaining Easter egg postings on material that came in my mail today. This one is sweet and playful; the other one is raunchy and homoerotic. There’s a lot you can do with eggs.

Ee2020.1 is a Jacquie Lawson animated ecard for Easter, illustrating the Mussorgsky piece “Ballet of (the) Chicks in their Shells” / “Ballet of (the) Unhatched Chicks” from Pictures at an Exhibition with chick after chick hatching, while one egg rolls about in struggle, with its chick finally emerging triumphantly among crocus flowers:


(#1) Eggs, chicks, and crocuses: all symbols of spring and (re)birth

(The sound track has an orchestral version of “Ballet”, with cheeping sound effects.)

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Annals of sexual slang: peacocks

April 1, 2020

News for penises, in Latin.

Mike Pope, posting on Facebook yesterday, this Duolingo example:

(#1)

Eyebrows were immediately raised.

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St. Martin des Poires

March 29, 2020

(Nothing actually crude, but a lot of mostly high-falutin’ sextalk that might give some people the fantods.)

In yesterday’s mail, a postcard from Ryan Tamares (a Stanford friend who is now socially but not postally distant from me) with this crate label from the 1920s and 1930s, featuring a character I’ll call the Bartlett Pear Kid:


(#1) We’ve been here before, in my 2/14/12 posting “Suggestive”, where I wrote: “The newsboy is hustling pears, but to modern eyes the label suggests something more salacious.”

I pursued this example further in a 6/14/16 posting “Crate labels”, which I’ll take up in a little while. But first the literally fabulous history of the Bartlett Pear Kid, who eventually became St. Martin des Poires, B.P.I.

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