Our Fading Erotic Heritage

Erotic Heritage Museum, Las Vegas

A number of years ago, during one of my numerous and brief jaunts to Sin City, one tall-standing sign caught my attention in a way that the others, overloaded with neon script and flashing lights, did not. “Las Vegas Erotic Heritage Museum,” it read, “SALE: Movies from $1.” As a devoted connoisseur of all things pornographic, I immediately pulled over, parked, and headed inside where I was not only met by a cavalcade of erotic memorabilia, ephemera, and, yes, discounted movies, but by a heavy-set woman (perhaps Mercedes Zavala) intent on showing me “the goods.” Hardly a come-on, thankfully, “the goods” were two shambolic boxes pulled from a rear store room and containing nothing but vintage 8mm and Super8 porn reels. Straight, gay, kink, and softcore – I bought all 40-odd titles for less than fifty bucks and headed back to California with the acquisition of an operating projector firmly planted in the front of my mind.

The reels I purchased, now running somewhat smoothly through a Goodwill-bought projector, provided the audio-visual entertainment for a handful of drunken late-night gatherings and were stored in a spare mini-fridge when not in use. (Why a refrigerator? See my recent blog about film restorers Vinegar Syndrome!) Although I eventually tossed the mini-fridge and sold the reels to a projectionist from San Francisco’s Castro Theatre, memories of my all-too-brief visit to the Erotic Heritage Museum lingered for years until I heard of the museum’s closing this week, apparently due to an unpaid rent dispute with landlord, Déjà Vu strip-club magnate Harry Mohoney who donated the land for museum use back in 2008. Speaking to the Las Vegas Weekly, Mohoney assured visitors that the museum would not be closing its doors for good, saying of his now-former tenants, “They have been asked to vacate the property so that the Erotic Heritage Museum can be given a fresh new look at erotic history and art.”

Museum operations manager Jerry Zientara, however, see things a bit differently, claiming the museum’s collection is under the stewardship of the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality, the nonprofit organization that opened and has been operating the museum since its inception. “We don’t know when we’ll be loading things out,” he told Las Vegas Weekly earlier this month, “but we do expect to be doing that.” And, true to his word, a call for volunteers to help with removal of exhibits and cleaning of the space came out from the museum’s Facebook account on February 16, followed three days later but this very sad notice:

Erotic Heritage Museum closes in Las Vegas

Explicit Japanese Art on Display at British Museum

Those of you who’ve discovered the often bizarre eroticism posted by hot hipster chicks on Tumblr may be aware of the recent resurgence in a form of erotic art that remained hidden from the West for centuries: octopus-fucking.

The Dream of the Fisherman's Wife; Hokusai, 1814
– The Dream of the Fisherman’s Wife; Hokusai, 1814

Although certainly not restricted to cephalopod-human relations, the sexually explicit Japanese art form known as shunga (spring pictures) rose to prominence in the Edo period (1603 to 1867) and persists to this day. The British Museum celebrates shunga with a new exhibition of works from such masters of ukiyo-e (woodblock prints and paintings) as Torii Kiyonaga, Kitagawa Utamaro, Hosoda Eishi, and, perhaps the most revered of all classical Japanese artists, Katsushika Hokusai (whose non-erotic print ‘The Great Wave off Kanagawa’ can be found on postcards, napkins, aprons, notebooks, and other knick-knacks in souvenir shops around the world, as well as at the British Museum).

Yuji Moriguchi

Contemporary artists such as Masami Teraoka, Yuji Moriguchi, and Jeff Faerber are continuing the Shunga tradition and using its form and historical connotations to examine AIDS, contemporary pornography, voyeurism, cultural globalization, and the increasingly self-determined path of female sexual expression. The exhibition at the British Museum, however, keeps its focus on shunga of the past. No less exploratory and celebratory than contemporary works and featuring everything from tentacle-rape fantasies, over-sized genitalia, Buddhist priests fondling their acolytes, samurai orgies, and even the occasional tender and romantic love scene.

‘Shunga: sex and pleasure in Japanese art’ is at the British Museum in London until January 5, 2014. For more information visit the museum’s website or see Ian Buruma’s piece at The Guardian.

faerberFULL

This Woman Wants to Sleep With You

A Polish woman hopes to earn herself a place in the record books with an attempt to sleep with 10o,000 men in what’s shaping up to be a lifelong sex marathon.

Ania Lisewska

Ania Lisewska of Warsaw aims to rid herself of Poland’s sexually restrictive attitudes, saying “In Poland, the subject of sex is still taboo and anyone who wants to fulfill their sexual fantasies is considered a deviant, a whore, or mentally ill.” Even though her tally of men fucked thus far stands at a considerably modest 284, Ania seeks “men from Poland, Europe, and all around the world” to (if my math stands) provide her with four-and-a-half “encounters” every day for the 60 years presumably remaining in her life. That’s 32 per week, 1666 per year. And that’s only if she retracts her decision to only fuck strangers on weekends, reserving the working week for her boyfriend, who is reportedly “not thrilled” with Ania’s bold endeavor, but has “come to terms with it”.

There are those, however, who doubt Ania’s claims and say she’s simply out to promote herself as an adult entertainer. In response, she posted this “proof” that allegedly shows the plucky 21-year-old servicing two Czech gentlemen at a club in Prague.

Ania Lisewska gangbang

Her face unfortunately obscured, it’s hard to tell if the brunette with both mouth and pussy filled is actually Ania or a nameless, faceless nobody trawling the clubs of the Eastern Bloc for dick… Either way, perhaps a vacation is in order!

American Boobs Reach New 34DD Heights

Conjure in your mind’s eye the chest of a notably busty celebrity, be she an actress, singer, model, or newscaster. Perhaps it’s Tyra Banks or Sofia Veragara (both of whom are reportedly 34DDs, by the way), but whoever it is they’re causing a wave of tingling, tightening sensations through your body, aren’t they? That, my friend, is the power of the female bosom. It sustains new life while promoting its creation through everyone’s favorite physical activity. Truly, the bosom is integral to the survival of the species, but at what cost?

Tits

Climate change, violent revolution, oppression of races, genders, sexualities, and spiritual beliefs, poverty, natural disasters, mass shootings… Where are the breasts of the world when these things are wreaking havoc on our lives? Why aren’t they swooping in to save the day, their undulating soothing the enraged and encouraging the hopeless. If recent reports from one of the female breast’s comrades in cups, the lingerie industry, are as well grounded as they appear, we’ve reason to believe there’s an army of increasingly powerful boobage in the making, an army that could be the salvation of this great nation and its people.

Bra sizes are increasing, says lingerie retailer and “bra fit stylists” Intimacy, with the average US woman now fitting herself with a 34DD bra, a significant leap from 1992’s average size of 34B. But is this size increase due to larger breasts throughout the population (due perhaps to better diets and more exercise) or are women simply fitting themselves with more comfortable undergarments? The latter, Intimacy says, is the most likely cause, with spokesperson Kate Terhune noting “Women are more educated about bra fit.” This theory is echoed by Cosabella, an Italian label that recently added 38C, D, and DD sizes, whose spokesperson Guido Campello believes the industry is now “focusing on larger cup sizes more in terms of offering, where they had never offered luxury or fashionable product before.”

Whether or not supernaturally giant breasts will rush to humanity’s aid in our time of greatest need remains to be seen, but we can at least rest assured that whatever they’re doing and whoever they belong to, many such breasts, now blossoming in comfortably fitted brasseries, they’ll be more attractive and better supported, in turn supporting us all.

Big Tits

Literature Lust – Mr. Pink’s Sex Advice

Missy Pinks at MrPinks.comDear Missy Pink,

I’m a female, 40+ in age, married to the same man for 21 years. Life has become comfortable, yes, routine and at times feeling a bit of a rut has taken over, but still, comfortable. We’re the typical next door neighbor, we both work, empty nesters, are in bed after the nightly news and Saturday nights are reserved for sex. My one relaxing act through the week is reading, and, I enjoy the dirty paperback books that need to be hidden between reading episodes. That’s how I put myself to sleep at night, dozing off between chapters. My husband recently picked up one of my books for the first time and read through a few pages. Now he’s thinking I want what’s written on the pages and he’s excited about trying different types of sexual fetish acts, and I don’t want that at all, it’s fun to read about, but, that’s where it stops. How do I tell him without him thinking I’m just not interested in getting kinky with him?

Literature Lust

Dear Lust,
Well, it’s a fine pornographic pickle you find yourself in! If you were to ask 10 women if they’d be game to follow his excitement or would they be more apt to agree with you, where reading about it is enough, I would have to first ask, how many of those 10 women are single, how many married. I say that, for a good reason.

When a couple get together and everything is new, exciting, abundantly wrapped in flirting and innuendoes, they enjoy the naughtiness of reaching an orgasm. The acts of hardcore pleasure, fetish filled moments that make them think about what’s transpired until they have the next erotic escapade. It’s all consensual and sensual when it’s fresh and new, but, as you mentioned, you’ve been married for over twenty years, so, there is this sort of adult image, an aura of being a responsible pillar of the community, things have settled down to a pace you feel good about. For singles, there is still that wildness of exploration and experimentation, for married people, it’s familiarity.

Men are visual creatures, so, as he read the pages of your book, he imagined seeing you in a sexy bit of lingerie, stockings tied around your wrists and ankles, your chest rising and falling from hard breathing as you anticipate the fetish act he’ll bestow upon you. In his mind, he may have only read a few pages, but, his imagination has taken him through volume two and three already. It may be too, he believes since that’s what you’re reading about, that’s what you want, and he’s happy to comply.
For women, we seemingly enjoy wrapping our minds around the written word. Anything can be sexy to us if it’s narrated from the pages in a manner that leaves us feeling as though we can become one of the characters….and that is the key. We place ourselves in the book, we become who we’re reading about, it’s an escape from the everyday life of who we are, and it will make for some very passionate and wet dreams through the night, but, when the alarm goes off, we return to our own bed, our own life, and our own way of feeling comfortable.

With kindness and compassion, explain to your husband that you love him, and you lust after him, but in the manner as things are now, that is what you find sexy. Tell him the books are merely fantasy, and reality is much better in your opinion. Just as he watches football every weekend and imagines himself on the field, grunting and sweating and scoring the winning touchdown, it’s a great dream, but he wouldn’t really want to take that brutal punishment each weekend. Once you make him understand he scores highly every Saturday night in the bedroom, he’ll feel like the most valuable player of your life.