Tag Archives: Porn

Unplugging Because. . .

Technology, like sex, has a love/scare relationship with most Americans.

Until relatively recently, sex has been something that you just did not speak about in anything remotely resembling polite company. Not only did Lucy and Ricky sleep in separate beds with a nightstand between them, but most of George Carlin’s seven words you can’t say on television have to do with sex.

The flip side to that, however, is that while sex might not have been a public subject, it was the thing most on the minds of American men and women. Porn thrived, especially with the arrival of the internet and the ability of people to buy it anonymously. You couldn’t talk about it, but it was used to sell everything from cars and toothpaste to fridges and massagers.*

Things haven’t changed all that much, but it has become a bit less of a taboo in public discussion. Or at least, my wife, known to one and all as She Who Must Be Talking About Sex, and her friends seem to have no trouble talking about this kind of thing anywhere and everywhere.

I’m thinking technology is beginning to occupy a similar place in the American psyche. Not so much its existence, but, rather its use.What's the point of things like the National Day of Unplugging? Are we that scared of what the internet, in particular, and technology, in general, can offer to us?

More and more people are joining movements like the National Day of Unplugging, which was held early last month. The point of it was to abjure technology from sundown March 7 to sundown March 8. Ironically, folks who participated took photos of themselves and posted them on the National Day of Unplugging website to talk about “I unplug to. . . ”

I’m assuming ironic-deafness is a prerequisite to becoming a Luddite.

This whole thing reminds me of people who used to say, “I never watch television, except maybe a few hours of Masterpiece Theater on PBS.” Mostly folks said that to make it look like they were too smart, too sophisticated to debase their minds with the common drivel the rest of us enjoyed.

I suspect these folks are probably the same ones who won’t use an e-reader because they only read “real” books.

So, really, what’s the point? It’s not like any of these people are going to unplug for the rest of their lives. It seems to me that the whole point of this unplugging is to plug back in and then broadcast to one and all how virtuous you were because you put down your smartphone for a while.

It might have something to do with the fact that people don’t trust themselves very much. They use programs that block the internet or blank their web browsers so they won’t fool around when they should be working. They keep checking their messages and e-mail during meals with other people.

Even if you have always-on connection, that doesn’t mean you have to use it, yeah?

Mostly, I think the attraction of these sorts of things lies in the fact that, for most people, the idea of change is scary. And technology is all about change, about doing things differently, more efficiently, on a wider scale than before, seeing new things in your lives that had always been there, but were never noticed.

Dudes and dudettes get caught up in the world and begin racing toward the future with eyes open, but stop every once in a while, stumble, and realize just how much change we’ve been through and still face.

The strong smile, assess and continue. The weak unplug.

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It’s Going To Be A Festival

I’ve found a new love.

Not the people-type love, dudes. I’m talking the love of things.

No, not that kind of love either. Perverts.

No, the love I’m talking about is the new-found love I now have for small independent movies and small-scale documentaries, courtesy of my cousin, the Babbling Brook. The BB is the founder of a wonderful film festival called the Key West Film Festival and it’s wonderful.

For any number of reasons. The most obvious being the first two words of its name: Key West. D’uh!

Yeah, the KWFF takes place over five days and is situated in the heart of Key West, on or just off of Duval Street at the historic Tropic Cinema and a few other places around town.

I never in my life conceived that I would not only go see 12 movies in three days while on vacation in Key West of all places, but I did do just that. And I loved it.

Even though my wife, known to me as She Who Must Be Seeing More Movies In Three Days Than She’s Seen In The Last Year, and I were only able to make three days of the festival, we saw 12 movies. And, for the most part, they were just outstanding.

The best features, I thought, were the documentaries. I saw some really amazing documentaries that took me into worlds I’d never imagined.

For instance, there was the showing of Mr. Angel, about porn star and transgender activist Buck Angel. He was born a genetic female, but came to realize that not only was she a lesbian, she also was a man. So she began testosterone treatments and other steps, including the top half of her gender reassignment surgery into a maleMr. Angel.

He then turned himself into a hulking, muscled-out, goateed, shaven-headed icon of masculinity, with one slight difference: He kept his vagina in perfect working order. Yeah, dudes. Think on that for a while.

As you might expect, the movie brought out a lot of discussion when it was over. I was of the opinion that his porn career was, for the most part, fueled by his desire for people to desire him just as he was, to receive reassurance that he was not an “oddity.”

Mr. Angel was, in other words, the perfect documentary that informed us of something we’d never known and also provided fodder for long and fruitful discussion.

Bending Steel, on the other hand, did not provoke discussion. Instead it provoked cheers; loud cheers from the entire audience. The documentary told the story of a shy, reclusive New Yorker who decided he wanted to become a performing circus strongman.

You know the type. The dudes who get up on stage and then set about bending solid-steel objects. This little man had that desire. He also had a pathological fear of being in front of crowds and wasn’t all that big.

BendingSteel_poster_thI’m telling you, this documentary was just astoundingly good. We laughed. We cried. We growled in anger. And we all cheered and screamed and almost jumped for joy near the end. This was an hour well spent.

There were more good movies than I have time to talk about here, dudes and dudettes. Suffice to say, I’ve definitely come to the realization that film festivals aren’t just about showcasing snooty, subtitled foreign films that no more than 17 people would ever see (even though there were several of those). They can be a wonderland full of amazing people with fantastic stories to tell and a place for you to listen.

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Gleeclipse

by Richard

I’ve made no secret of my love for Glee, the goofy, silly musical sitcom on Fox network about a bunch of outcast losers who try to redeem their high-school social lives by joining the Glee Club. Yeah, it’s fantasy.

I think you dudes also know about my disdain for the horrible, gut-wrenchingly appalling series of (and I hate to call them this because it’s so demeaning to the library) books known as Twilight. It’s abstinence porn at its very worst.

So, let’s say you go ahead and do a little mash up of the two things. Will the awesome of Glee be able to counteract the sheer black-hole-level of badness that is Twilight?

In a word: Of course it will.*

And, herewith, the proof: Gleeclipse.

Well, at least it would be, if I could get the YouTube embed to work. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be working right now with the new WordPress update kicking and and doing so well. I guess you’ll have to do it the old-fashioned way and just click on the link to see it on the YouTube site. So, without further ado, or, really, any ado at all, here it is. No, really. Just click HERE. That’s all you have to do.

*Yes, I know that wasn’t a word. That was the joke. Feeble as it was.

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