Archive for the ‘Signs and symbols’ Category

Art of the penis

February 19, 2017

(Obviously, there will be a lot of dick talk here, but of the art-historical and art-critical variety, rather than the sexual-arousal variety.)

On Facebook, art historian Reuben Cordova writes:

I’m giving a lecture: “The Penis in Art. A Short History, From the Greeks to Today.” Any suggestions?

and offers as an example this ancient Greek vase with the image of a naked woman carrying a gigantic penis on it:


(Such images appear to fall under the Fine Art Exemption for body display on Facebook, and presumably Google+ and WordPress as well. The point presumably being that the penis images on display are not of actual human bodyparts, but are fantasy creations.)

Naked men are all over ancient Greek art, and ancient Roman art as well. A few more examples, then a pile of links on this blog and AZBlogX to phallic art, and a sampling of modern penis art not already covered in my blogs.


Emoji are the hieroglyphs of the future

February 16, 2017

Today’s Bizarro:

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


The news for penguins and, oh yes, penises

February 15, 2017

From Elizabeth Daingerfield Zwicky on Facebook yesterday, a chocolate cupcake for Valentine’s Day (which is also, significantly, Elizabeth’s birthday), with white frosting and a blue frosting design on top of that:


Ah, you say a penguin, on ice, with a message of love (those hearts). Note that, thanks to me, penguins are a big thing in my family.

Elizabeth boldly denied the Penguin Interpretation — well, with a  Magrittean disavowal (Ceci n’est pas une pipe):

This is not a penguin.

But then she added an alternative, the Rocket Interpretation:

A rocket. With heart-shaped windows.

But wait! There’s more!


VDay kiss-in

February 13, 2017

On the eve of the holiday, we come to same-sex kissing in public (in the flesh or in photos distributed publicly), which I maintain is, these days, still almost always a political act (and to my mind an admirable one) — protesting homophobia, the denial of lgbt rights, and homo-hostility of all sorts. (The exception is in kissing in the few safe spaces allowed to us, and even then photos might become truly public.) These protests can be carried out by warm and gentle strategies, like Neil Patrick Harris and his husband David Burtka performing their genuine pleasure in each other as a persistent campaign of adorable public affection, a campaign carried out on behalf of lgbt people everywhere. Or the protests can be more pointed and defiant (examples to follow), but again the protestors are acting on behalf of the community, not just themselves. Some of us in fact feel that we have a moral responsibility to act in this way, especially if we can do so without much loss to ourselves and have social capital (reputation, celebrity, authority, whatever) we can draw on: if not us, then who?

A serious lead-in to something I take great pleasure in seeing: men kissing men, women kissing women. And since tomorrow is Kissing Day…


Chocolates for Valentine’s Day

February 12, 2017

(Very little of linguistic interest, beyond a penis joke in Spanish and a note on grammatical gender. Otherwise, it’s the massive Latino musclehunk “The Marvel” on display.)

From my regular correspondent RJP this morning, a (broken) link to a Facebook video by The Marvel (posting as maravilla3x). I persevered and found a working Facebook link, which FB seems now to have taken down as too racy: it shows a naked Marvel sitting up in bed humping a big heart-shaped box of Valentine’s chocolates, then taking the cover off and eating chocolates from the box while revving up the tempo and intensity of his pelvic thrusts towards climax (at which point the tease is cut off). However, The Marvel has resourcefully put the video on YouTube, and you can watch it there.


Dwarfs for a new age

February 9, 2017

A Benjamin Schwartz cartoon in the latest (February 13th/20th) New Yorker:

The German folk tale of Snow White provides the basis for this name play, though the published version of the story by the Brothers Grimm didn’t name the dwarfs who help Snow White. The modern names entered pop culture with the 1937 Disney animated film. At which point they provided an inventory of names to play with (supplementing another source of pop culture names, the names of Santa’s eight reindeer from “A Visit From St. Nicholas”).


Saint George, patron saint of parks at night

February 7, 2017

(Warnings. There will be talk of men’s bodies and sex between men, mostly in plain language, so this is not for kids or the sexually modest. And there will be comparisons of mansex to religious ritual, which some might find sacrilegious and therefore offensive.)

That would be the singer George Michael, as canonized by Australian artist Scott Marsh. The cover of the March-April 2017 Gay & Lesbian Review:


One allusion is to Michael’s enthusiasm for sex in public places — in mens rooms, in the hookup areas of parks, and so on — which eventually triggered his coming out as gay and led to his fashioning defiant celebrations of his sexuality and of these practices. Another allusion is to sexual acts, especially mansex, as analogues of religious rituals: a man sucking cock as worshiping the essence of maleness on his knees, a man getting fucked as offering his body to another man as sacrifice.

To come: the Scott Marsh mural; about George Michael’s music, with an appreciation of several of his songs; musings on sex in public, its organization as a social practce, and entrapment by police; and the rituals of mansex.


The news for penises: Lunar New Year

January 28, 2017

I take the occasion of Lunar New Year to celebrate the cock, last up in the lunar zodiac in 2005, next up in 2029:

(Shirt from the TeeAndGiftsSite.) Red (the hue of tumescence) is the color for the year:

When the red red phallus comes throb throb throbbin’ along along


A sex/gender symbol of the mind

January 25, 2017

Today’s Bizarro:


(If you’re puzzled by the odd symbol in the cartoon (not the sex/gender symbol) — Dan Piraro says there’s just one in this strip — see this Page.)

Sex on his mind, all the time.


Annals of double entendre

January 21, 2017

Comment by Robert Coren on my “Meaty matters” posting:

“It Ain’t the Meat, It’s the Motion” inescapably reminds me of a cigarette ad from my youth, whose slogan I chose to interpret in a way probably not intended by its creators: “It’s not how long you make it, it’s how you make it long”.

The 1951 song title was intended to convey (in the Wiktionary gloss)

When it comes to sexual satisfaction, penis size doesn’t matter, but technique does.

The cigarette ad from the 60s (which came in many variants, for television and for print media) was for Winston Super Kings, and the sexual innuendo was surely not inadvertent.