sexuality and body image

In my wanderings this morning I ran across zenslut. You know what it’s like when you run across a new journal or blog at what feels like exactly the right time? Everything clicks, and the one entry at the top actually catches your eye and makes you read further and in doing so you gain new respect for the blogger or new ideas or new links to explore and really, I like to think of it as digital spelunking because you just never know what treasures you will find.

But back to zenslut. I was at first intrigued, and then fascinated, and then even more as I read her journal entry for today. She’s posted some nude self-portraits, and has this to say about them:

anyway, while i was taking the shots, it occured to me that my doing nude self-portraits isn’t just like any other photographer taking nude photographs of themselves. because of the body i have, my doing it ends up being a radical feminist statement about body image. which, really, i’m okay with. but i got kind of pissed off about it while i was taking the pictures, too. i mean, jesus, why SHOULD the fact that i’m fat change the way my self-portraits are categorized? why does it have to be a radical statement at all? why is it that my fat suddenly makes my photographs seem more daring, more difficult to look at, braver, or more political? it’s really sort of shitty that this still the reality we’re faced with.

Scarier still, to realize that a) it wasn’t always this way and b) a lot of the reasons this thinking still persists is because we women have generally internalized the message and learned to hate our own bodies.

She goes on to say, and this is the part that got me thinking the hardest:

the thing is, i really love how i look. i look at myself naked in my mirror ever night and think, “goddamn, i’d fuck me. i’m hot.” what makes me sad (though more frequently “angry”) sometimes, however, is that while i’m perfectly happy and comfortable living in my body, i’m not everybody. the fact is, a lot of people would see my body and NOT be interested in a dating/fucking/whatever relationship simply for the fact that i’m fat. it makes me angry to be reduced down to that one characteristic, but it also makes me sad for them because honey, i know what they’re missing out on.

This twigged a part of my brain. I’ve fought with poor body image most of my life. For every time I look in the mirror and think “yum”, there are two times I look in the mirror and think “Fuck, good thing I’m not dating right now”. I have people tell me I’m a very pretty lady. It’s just tough to believe, some days. Reading zenslut’s entry, and viewing her pictures inspired so many emotions in me: awe at her bravery, envy at her self-image, shame at my own, determination to work harder at a better body image, and a sense of kinship, because I think that men who look at me and see only the fact that my body won’t end up on the cover of Cosmo are also missing out on something. A very enthusiastic and sensual partner.

I love zenslut because she can do what I can’t always manage to do – look in the mirror and say “goddamn, i’d fuck me. i’m hot.”

the seduction

In my mind’s eye, I saw you pushing me up against a wall. You slid your hand over the hollow of my throat, under my chin, behind my ears, to bury it in the hair at the base of my neck. Your body settled against mine, making my skin tingle with its heat. Your eyes kept contact with me the entire time as those hard lips came closer, my body softening in response, lips parting, and then you were kissing me, and it was soft but then it was hard and so very deep, sensual wet kisses that stole my breath from my body…

I don’t think I’d ever been so nervous about anything in my life. A date. Nothing big. But after two years of celibacy, it seemed monumental.

My hands shook a little as they fastened a fine gold chain around my neck. Breathe, I warned myself, just breathe.

The doorbell rang.

Oh, this wasn’t going to help my pulse at all. Continue reading “the seduction”

vikki’s personal sex trivia

I have to admit, I was curious to see what my own personal sex trivia would look like, all spelled out in little blurbs and bits, stats and interesting factoids. And I’ve found I enjoy reading over it, almost as much as I’d enjoy reading someone else’s. It helps me to take everything just a little less seriously.

Trivia is one way of presenting information about a topic. Let’s face it, trivia doesn’t always touch on the more meaningful aspects of life or culture, but there is something interesting about bite-sized information. It gives us a snapshot, rather than a full video, but it’s fun to read. The details are sometimes best left to the imagination anyway. 🙂
I have to admit, I was curious to see what my own personal sex trivia would look like, all spelled out in little blurbs and bits, stats and interesting factoids. And I’ve found I enjoy reading over it, almost as much as I’d enjoy reading someone else’s. It helps me to take everything just a little less seriously.

Continue reading “vikki’s personal sex trivia”

play that funky music, white boy

If there’s one drawback to bullet vibes (or any vibe, really – wait, there are other kinds? – grin) it’s that you have your choice of one, two, three, maybe up to seven speeds, but that’s it. Once you’ve learned their grooves, there are no more surprises. This can be a Good Thing but it also means you miss out on the spontaneity that a partner brings to the mix.

Enter Audi-oh!, a wonderful new toy with an adorable tag-line: Sound in, pleasure out.

Audi-Oh™ is a revolution in stimulation technology for men or women. Sound is converted into infinitely variable pulses of pleasure. Audi-Oh can use ambient sound, like the music in your favorite club, or direct audio input from devices such as portable CD players, MP3 players, your PC or home audio and video systems. Audi-Oh was designed to resemble a pager. Its compact form and high-tech appearance allows it to be worn discreetly in public.

This sounds like so much fun, I can’t begin to tell you. And at 70 bucks, it’s certainly not completely ridiculous. I’ve paid more, for worse vibes. And I’m kind of curious how disco, or 80s pop metal, or Eminem’s song from 8 mile, would play itself out on the device. Talk about a whole new way to appreciate music.
This one’s going in my letter to Santa this year. 🙂

the tragedy of the three

I recently received a letter from a visitor which read:

I’d like to get your opinion on this scenario – A woman loves two men, both of them want her only for themselves, yet each realizes that the other man touches her in places that they cannot. She will not let one man cross over into the other’s territory. It’s been going on for about ten months. All three of them are at the end of their ropes. J

Once I got over the shock that someone would even come to me for my opinion on such a thing (my love life, while colorful at times, hasn’t exactly always been successful), I realized I wanted to try to answer this. So here goes.

It’s just never easy and never pretty to have more than two people involved in a romantic situation (and sometimes it’s messy even with just two people). I can feel your pain. I’ve dated more than one person at a time. I’ve cared deeply for more than one person at a time. At one point in my life, I was even balanced on the sweet hot edge of falling out of love with one man and in love with another all at the same time.

And I’ll give the only answer that worked for me: every person has to decide for themselves what they’re willing to live with. And what they’re willing to give up. And I don’t just mean the shit that you talk yourself into because you want it so bad. I’m not talking about the shit you put up with because you don’t think that’s the way it’s always going to be, that things will change, they’ll settle down, they’ll be less stressful, they’ll all work out.

What I mean to say is, take a snapshot of life and how it is today, down to the last grain of truth. Could you live with this forever? What needs do you have that are not being met? What about wants? Because life does not hand out guarantees, and you can’t change people. Assume that life will continue indefinitely the way it is right now. If you can live with the compromise your life is made up of today, then stay in for the long haul and encourage the other people involved to do similar soul-searching.

But I’ll tell you this. Sounds to me like you already know you can’t live with the now. So I say walk away.

I’ve had to walk away twice in my life from something I wanted so badly it felt like it was ripping my soul out. But I couldn’t live with the compromise. I wanted something more for me. I wanted love and lust and someone who could be with me and face the risks ahead dead-on.

I hope I find it one day. For what it’s worth, J., I hope you do too.