June 28, 2009 § Leave a comment
WHICH OF THESE COUPLES WOULD YOU RATHER BE LIKE?
The Gay Pride parade is going on outside my window now. I’m not fond of parades, however important the cause, since I live so close to the park where they commence. This one has good energy, and the joy is infectious, which would make the noise easier to bear if the cats weren’t so disturbed.
They’re avoiding the windowsills, which are their usual daytime spots. They prowl and stare, wide-eyed, as the speeches and cries of the crowd wash over us. Fitzroy is asking for reassurance every two minutes. He’s inserted himself behind my laptop right now.
No, he’s heading for the window and the noise, then retreating and meowing. Mouchette sits quietly in the doorway, watching him, and then follows him to the bureau where they pause, looking around, on high alert.
In the Times Book Review today, there’s a review of Masters of Sex, by Thomas Maier, about Masters and Johnson. My friend Philip knows Maier from his college days; he also knows someone writing a play about Masters and Johnson. Statistically, it follows that there must be more literature in the works. I don’t believe the universe is steering them all towards Philip for some future destined event. I sure hope not.
It surprises me anyone is still interested in the duo. They were pioneers once, and they debunked the vaginal orgasm nonsense, but they also promoted the idea that women are naturally multi-orgasmic, which works well in soft-core porn romance novels, but has made a lot of us feel deprived. I can remember more than one man telling me he was going to make me come over and over, and I’d think good luck, buddy and feel sour. Not what you want in your mind while you’re taking your bra off.
Johnson is quoted as saying, “I had an active interest in sex, but never particularly to the men I was involved with.”
The way I hear this is probably not as it was intended: I never got to fuck the ones who turned me on. She and Masters married to promote their brand. It was titillating to America that a male and female scientist worked together on this risqué stuff, but it was their marriage that made it a satisfying story.
Apparently, they rarely had sex after marriage. But then, who does? (excuse-moi, dear husband. I know we did. Too often outdoors, in my opinion.)
Johnson said she considered the word ‘love’ to be “imprecise and inappropriate.” It’s not clear from the review if she was talking only about her own marriage or about all sexual relations. In any case, someone who has never experienced loving passion seems to me to be missing a big chunk of the subject. Sex without love is part of the human story and important to understand, but love is not a sentiment divorced from biological events. It certainly affects the way my body responds.
And what about mice? The New York Times says male mice sing to the ladies. When researchers played the recorded mouse mating song for female mice, the girls came to check it out—but only once. A song without a singer doesn’t appeal to the animal soul. They’re not likely to sit alone, drinking Gallo Hearty Burgundy and listening to Janis Joplin, stoking themselves with romantic self-pity because it just feels so bad.
Does that mean they don’t yearn? Who can say? Chimps may be the missing link. I know they get crushes (the females on male grad students especially). But I digress.
M&J wanted to be famous and were; they deserve their place in the history of their era. But what’s going on outside my window is much more interesting. Gay culture has given us infinitely more information about sex, thanks to their penchant for experimenting and the fact that for the last few decades they won’t shut up.
More gays go into the arts. Their voices are amplified, and always have been, even when it was in code. It seems to me there is a lot more that could be written about that—not the obvious (who was gay and what that song/movie/novel was really about) but how much the rest of us have learned and assimilated.
I did a quick google search to see what has been written, and didn’t find what I was looking for, maybe because there are still too many deconstructionists in the universities. It’s all about discourse and how naming creates reality. I’m more interested in how reality creates reality. As they say in medical school, “see one, do one, teach one.” Oh, there are so many things I wish I’d seen and done.
Then I’d teach you. Promise.
Sung by the people of Faery over Diarmuid and Grania, in their bridal sleep under a Cromlech. We who are old, old and gay, O so old! Thousands of years, thousands of years, If all were told: Give to these children, new from the world, Silence and love; And the long dew-dropping hours of the night, And the stars above: Give to these children, new from the world, Rest far from men. Is anything better, anything better? Tell us it then: Us who are old, old and gay, O so old! Thousands of years, thousands of years, If all were told. ~William Butler Yeats