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Posts Tagged ‘sex’

Beantown

Boston is a wonderful city full of culture, history and beauty. Yet Boston is also a very strange city, full of oxymorons and seeming ideological discrepancies. For example, Massachusetts was one of the first states to legalize gay marriage–a very liberal move–but, they have very strict drug and alcohol rules.

On my birthday a friend tried to order me a shot and the bartender gave her a knowing look and said he couldn’t give us shots, but he could give us “shooters.” As far as I can tell though, a shooter is a shot with ice and a straw and a slightly larger glass. I’m not sure what purpose this serves. The same amount of alcohol is included in the shooter as in the shot, but I guess the straw encourages slower drinking, so that could be the reason.

At first I thought I was crazy. How could such a blue state have such strict rules about alcohol? And sex? Now, I’m not an expert on the sex toy industry, but I’ve only seen one “adult” store in Boston. At home, where I went to school and other cities I passed many more. But then I read this passage in American Rose: A Nation Laid Bare the Life and Times of Gypsy Rose Lee about how the Minsky brothers got around prohibition and moralists during their burlesque shows:

“the following afternoon, Herbert installed red, white, and blue lights in the center of the footlights trough and wired them to the ticket booth, where he was stationed every night. If he saw a cop in uniform or suspected one had infiltrated the audience in disguise, he threw on the red light. At once the act downgraded into a tamer version of itself–a “Boston,” they called it, named after that city’s especially vigilant enforcers of decency.”

This crazy discrepancy that I experience today has a history! Who knew? I guess it makes sense, considering Massachusetts was initially settled by puritans.

I have no overwhelming or interesting comments to make on this observation, but it fascinates me as it’s a real life example of how our past, our history, affects us today.

Also, fun fact, Boston is nicknamed Beantown because the Puritans took Sunday as a day of rest to its most extreme, i.e. no cooking. So on Saturdays the Puritan women would cook up some beans for the next days cold meal.

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Concupiscent Classic

I’m sure nearly everyone has felt the way I’ve been feeling lately, ….that is to say ….. frustrated (ahem!) To be perfectly honest, I’ve been feeling a bit pent up. It’s been a while after all, and I’m only human. So I do what most women do when they are feeling this way, I watch porn read classic literature.

Just kidding! Alright, I am reading The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about a real classic. A classic must-read for anyone feeling a little lascivious: A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux. A knight, Nicholas, from sixteenth century England is transported to 1988 because his soulmate, Dougless, is in distress. (Dougless is a woman.) The two don’t get a long at all, but the Knight convinces our modern heroine to help him suss out his murderer through historical research. It’s all a bit cheesy, but when the two inevitably get together Wow! It’s one of the best and most riveting steamy scenes I’ve ever read.

 

A very small taste:

“Nicholas,” she whispered. “Nicholas.”

He was on her, his mouth and hands everywhere as she kissed whatever part of him came near her mouth. His hands tore at her gown and Dougless heard it ripping away. When his hot, wet mouth fastened onto her breast she screamed in ecstasy.

 

That’s just the beginning! It goes on for another titillating six pages. I promise you, you will not be let down by the book.

I’ll keep my eye out for more stimulating scenes; although I highly doubt I’m going to get any from Monsieur Dumas. Do you have any go-to “classics” for hard times?

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The Mapmaker’s Opera by Bea Gonzalez

The main character, Diego is born into suspect circumstances in Seville, Spain near the turn of the twentieth century. He takes an interest in maps, birds and the New World. These passions lead him to work with a famous naturalist sketching birds in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. Diego falls in love with the food, the wildlife, and, most importantly, a young woman of Merida named Sofia. The plot thickens when two birds birds whose species is on the brink of extinction are discovered in the possession of a wealthy, greedy man of the area.

In general, the book is good, albeit slow. The main star of the book is the writing, which is mostly beautiful, but I had the impression at times Gonzalez tried too hard. The writing was often too rich, too floral, too vivid, just too, too much without enough plot.

Of course, set in Mexico in 1910, there are many differences in dating and courtship. Introductions, dances, teas, it all seems to tedious! More than that, I was struck by the things that do not change.

Sofia’s Aunt Marta explains some of the intricacies of courting during that time, “The first assault, Sofia, is done with the eyes…The eyes reveal what lies deep in the gut, anyone can tell you that, and if a man is interested he will make sure to look at you in just the right way, a well-considered raise of the eyebrow if you like, at which point — listen carefully now — at which point it is very important that you do not respond in kind. Why? Because you risk being immediately dismissed as a cualquiera–a woman without morals, a woman who, admittedly, does hold attraction for a man but one he will certainly never consider in any serious way, for who would want to be married to such a woman?” (113)

Two similarities to today’s dating strike me from that passage: 1) the eyes; and 2) the cualquiera.

Dating always starts with the eyes. Either two people begin by sneaking glances at one another whilst promenading across a town square, or being stared at in a crowded bar. The initial attraction, dating, relationships, it all starts with the eyes.

The word “cualquiera” can be loosely translated as a hussy, a tart or floozy. How many times have we been given the advice that a woman shouldn’t sleep with a man before being married, or before the third month of dating, and absolutely never on the first date because men may want “that sort of girl” for a night but he never wants to marry her? (As if that’s the ultimate goal for all relationships!) I would like to think that we’re living past the age of cualquieras and floozies, but I still get looks or sighs of shock if I sleep with a new guy before we’ve been dating for a month. And if it’s after the first date? Forget about it! Disapproving looks, lectures and shaking of heads abound.

These double standards are ridiculous and have been around for way too long! We should be moving past this archaic advice, and celebrating the fact that we are no longer bound by all the superfluous and erroneous courting constraints.

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