Category Archives: Sex

The perils of being an aging bookworm, or why a lot of ‘women’s fiction’ royally pisses me off.

Cultural models matter. They matter because they’re how I and he and everyone else construct and understand our experiences, of relationships and aging and embodiment and all the rest, and it REALLY FUCKS ME OFF that what appears to be a large and popular swathe of books, including some whose press releases suggest they’re crossover literary, offer only limited and damaging options for women (and people!) to grow and exist and have relationships and careers after thirty-five. Fuck that shit. Continue reading

Posted in books, Culture, frivolous wittering, Love, Psychobabble, Sex, wtf even | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Pretty on the Inside; in which language is a bastard

This is another F-word post, inspired by discussion with a genderqueer friend of mine who hates being referred to as ‘pretty’ and seguing seamlessly into my attempts at reclaiming ‘pretty’ as a site of sociocultural resistance. Or something.

Posted in Culture, frivolous wittering, People being dicks, Psychobabble, Sex | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

We need to talk about rape

Post 3 for the F-word, a response to that massively troubling Guardian piece about ‘sort-of rape’. Contains ranting and references to the amazing Rock Star Dinosaur Pirate Princess’s internet-famous tea analogy.

Posted in Culture, People being dicks, Psychobabble, Sex | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

On being queer and passing as straight

See also: who am I, in a context that doesn’t recognise my answer? Post 2 for the F-word is up here.

Posted in Culture, Love, People being dicks, Sex | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

It’s not what but who: the problems of desire

I have NO IDEA AT ALL, none whatsoever, how to cope with my own desire. None at all. So for me, Holly’s post is a bit offbeam. I’m mostly cheerfully open about *what* I want, the things I like doing in bed, my kinks and foibles. I can discuss *that* with strangers and friends as well as with lovers, although I too am susceptible to awkwardness in the heat of the, er, moment. But desire fucks me up. How to express wanting someone, even how to deal with those feelings and/or the possibility of rejection – I’m utterly lost. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Hunger, kink, Love, Psychobabble, Sex, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

The Millenium trilogy: Men Who Write About Men Who Hate Women

If all men who damaged women did it by raping and murdering them, we could all hate, denounce, fear and revile them. But unfortunately, much of the time the damage is far more insidious – it’s in presenting women’s violation as inevitable (a rite of passage marked by a tattoo ‘as a reminder’?), their subjugation as unavoidable, and their bodies as the only place from which they can properly draw ‘confidence’. It’s in declaring that all men who hate women kill them. It’s in telling women they’ll ultimately need men to be safe. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Psychobabble, Sex, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

On love, feminism, sexuality and searching

Being noticed is ordinary, fleeting and impersonal. Being seen is extraordinary, lasting and intimate. Being noticed is common and only skin-deep. Being seen is rare and profound. It is what happens when you stay up all night talking in a stranger’s car because the conversatin is so good you forget to reach for the door handle. Suddely it is light and your stomach is growling and your future feels as if it is laid out in front of you like a highway in the desert…Being seen is when your gitrlfriend asks ‘Why do you seem so sad?’ before you realise that you are, in fact, sad. Being seen is rarely about physical beauty [although i think for me it is sometimes about seeing the beauty in the physical]. Being seen is never about being buff or thin. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Love, Sex, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

On Subversion and Perversion: in passionate defence of burlesque

Ms Penny is undoubtedly right about the values of the industry that produced Burlesque the movie. But about the subversive, perverted, challenging, playful subculture it claims to represent? Hardly. As Ms Bitz pointed out on Women’s Hour only last week, there is so much more to burlesque than that film. Ms Penny makes the same mistake as Hollywood there. To conflate a Hollywood interpretation – the product of an industry with often precisely the values she erroeously ascribes to burlesque – with burlesque itself, particularly in this country, is anathema to many current burlesque performers.Largely because of the joy which burlesque performers frequently take in challenging, deconstructing and undermining contemporary gender and sexual stereotype. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, kink, Psychobabble, Sex, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

What I Think About When I Think About Porn.

Thing is, for me porn’s never quite what i think it is for a lot of men, a safe world of ultimately controllable sexuality. Sex that you don’t have to think about or engage with or care about, that you can switch on or off like a tap. I’m involved with it, engaged with it, good or bad. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, kink, Psychobabble, Sex, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

You got me wondering why I,I like it rough…

There seem to be very few socially sanctioned cultural spaces for the expression of entirely natural female aggression, or even assertion. From what I’ve seen, women in both social and business relationships are by and large assumed and expected to take a conciliatory, facilitating role, to not only avoid but defuse conflict, to allow men space to dictate agendas and boundaries, to work for compromise and co-operation not individual assertion. This is by no means wholly a bad thing. But it does leave women very little space to express the frustrations and impositions of everyday life without being judged, condemned or punished for it. Continue reading

Posted in Culture, kink, Psychobabble, Sex, Uncategorized | 9 Comments