Ms. Maddow speaks as if she's still on Radio, and suspects her signal is weak.
and mention the business others raise about rapidity of speech. Local Channel 13's suave weatherman Chris Wright is a noteworthy example, or offender: the traces of his Mid-South African-American dialect--where words seem to be released in phonetic bubbles from just underwater, though not as sluggishly as in the Deep South--have been aerated at Jacuzzi Jet speed, evidently by professional training, and that likely with an eye, or ear, to either talking-up vocal music (blabbing over musical intros right until the vocal starts) or cramming as many commercials into a time slot as possible. At any rate, he's far from alone. With the weather it's no big deal, since if you miss something you can wait five minutes until they go over it all again. But 13's weatherman is also traditionally the host of the local High School Quiz Bowl show, where it has the effect of someone shouting calculus problems at you from the window of a passing Buick.
So Roy aims us at the Ol' Perfesser doing weird things with his mouth, mostly by repeating the weird, pat, and weirdly pat Republican Anti-Sex Talking Points of the last half-century. And by ricochet to this, the most recent in a series of semi-memoirs in which the argument appears to run as follows: 1) There is an enormous amount of Porn out there, something the Reader may not be aware of, and it may be linked to people, generally males, but occasionally Wild Going Girls, behaving in certain ways, often sexual; 2) The fact that this is transmitted via the internet, or videophone, makes it different than earlier forms of Porn, because Technology; and 3) the problem really can be traced to Ur-Feminists not speaking out about Porn and the Internets, and instead focusing on stupid old-fashioned ideas like marriage and patriarchy.
Male desire is not a malleable entity that can be constructed through politics, language, or media. Sexuality is not neutral. A warring dynamic based on power and subjugation has always existed between men and women, and the egalitarian view of sex, with its utopian pretensions, offers little insight into the typical male psyche. Internet porn, on the other hand, shows us an unvarnished (albeit partial) view of male sexuality as an often dark force streaked with aggression. The Internet has created a perfect market of buyers and sellers (with the sellers increasingly proffering their goods gratis) that provides what people—overwhelmingly males (who make up two-thirds of all porn viewers)—want to see or do.
Okay, a couple things here. First, no one despairs of the crappy comic-book cinema tastes of the past thirty years more than I, but I find it to be an artifact of mass-market capitalism, not a perfect condemnation of every last mind on the planet. Second, why do we so often run into the critique--or simple dismissal--of "Sixties egalitarianism" as hopelessly utopian (and pretentious!) in a piece whose sole reason for tree killing, or forced electron reorganization, is to complain about how things are? The fucking Age of Aquarius (has that been shifted now, by the way?) was on the musical goddam stage, and half the audience was just there to see chicks naked. The women I knew in the 70s, the ones who'd read the first edition of Our Bodies Ourselves, (and that was most of 'em) weren't exactly sanguine about the prospects. In fact, half of 'em were damned near suicidal. I'll grant you that, for a brief moment or two, people considerably closer to either ocean than we in the Midwest are were inclined to trendy communal living. Here we looked on it with slightly less enthusiasm than we had for macramé and the peasant sleeves/leather jerkin look for men. Again, please: do not base an entire socio-economic worldview on a Donovan album. Or Mad Men.
As for the "reactionary political correctness of the 1990s" and its disastrous view of gender politics, is there any sense at all in which this isn't just a facile construction meant to make your later ratiocination look wise? "Two generations of women, my own included, soared into the game with the justifiable expectations of not only earning the same wage as a guy, but also inhabiting the sexual arena the way a man does." Who was teaching you the latter? Why'd you buy it in the first place? Listen, being Sadder but Wiser just as the foggy amorphous Island of Middle Age comes into view is not a condition that's been forced on you by the malefactors of a previous age. They were just as mazed by things as you are, and just hoping to make sense of them as best they could. The business of blaming the Older Generation for the woes of the world, Weltschmerz, or the inability to achieve orgasm is probably as old as the invention of adolescence. But it's just recently that it's taken to analyzing a period in the past by watching teevee programs set in it.
Unless this really is your own story, huh? Please tell me it isn't.
Never was this made plainer to me than during a one-night stand with a man I had actually known for quite a while.
Thanks for sharing. Now we all get to get fucked.
A polite, educated fellow with a beautiful Lower East Side apartment
Y'know, in my forty-some years of spending the small details of my sexual adventures on unsuspecting strangers I have never thought to begin one with a description of the guest towels.
invited me to a perfunctory dinner right after his long-term girlfriend had left him. We quickly progressed to his bed, and things did not go well. He couldn’t stay aroused. Over the course of the tryst, I trotted out every parlor trick and sexual persona I knew. I was coquettish then submissive, vocal then silent, aggressive then downright commandeering; in a moment of exasperation, he asked if we could have anal sex. I asked why, seeing as how any straight man who has had experience with anal sex knows that it’s a big production and usually has a lot of false starts and abrupt stops. He answered, almost without thought, “Because that’s the only thing that will make you uncomfortable.” This was, perhaps, the greatest moment of sexual honesty I’ve ever experienced—and without hesitation, I complied. This encounter proves an unpleasant fact that does not fit the feminist script on sexuality: pleasure and displeasure wrap around each other like two snakes.
Look, I hate to break this to you, little sister, but even back in my, pre-VCR, day, the ol' "I need to violate you philosophically" routine worked at least 1 time out of 3. Even in crappy student apartments.
Which brings us to Joe Lieberman; his histrionic pre-resignation speech was a familiar one to any of us who'd listened to Evan Bayh's last spring, though I don't remember Bayh having his publicist spread the word three days in advance in the hope that someone might talk him out of it. Of Lieberman, "Goodbye, already" is already one too many words, but I enjoyed the talk he had with Jennifer Fucking Rubin:
Do the attacks from the left get to him? He said, "It doesn't discourage me, but it does dismay me." He continued, "There is such an ideological orthodoxy among Democrats that if you're not there 100 percent of the time, you're not 'there.'"
Do we not now posses the technology to identify dementia in its early stages? And do we even need it in this case?