It’s amazing what a man will do when he is both horny and bored. I firmly believe all of man’s great contributions to civilization were a direct result of boredom and sexual frustration. Alexander the Great conquered the ancient world because he was bored and horny. Galileo turned his telescope to the stars because he was bored and horny. The entire Internet, the greatest communication device ever invented, was basically created by legions of bored and horny men. So that’s my excuse. The reason I almost, almost, purchased a male sex toy online is because I was bored and horny.
It’s not like I sat at my computer with the intent to find and buy a male sex toy. It started innocently enough, with me Tweeting about the new book in the Game of Thrones series. From there, I checked out some of my favorite blogs. Sent an email. Strolled around Facebook a little. Briefly perused a Wikipedia entry about “Battlestar Galactica.” Watched some Internet porn. Hung out in a couple rooms on the new music site Turntable.fm. Watched a YouTube clip where a drunk woman tries to bake cookies. Nothing out of the ordinary. To be honest, I probably discovered the male sex toy website because of the porn videos I idly watched. I write “idly” because there is just so much porn out there, it’s lost its allure. Even Augustus Gloop would get tired of sweets if he was forced to live in Candyland.
The male sex toy I saw for sale is called a Fleshlight. If you are unfamiliar with it, a Fleshlight is basically a flashlight tube with a rubber vagina instead of a light fixture. The faux-gina isn’t actually made out of rubber. The manufacturers claim it is made out of some top-secret polymer they dub “superskin.” A man sticks his rod into the frighteningly lifelike fake vagina and pumps away. I say “frighteningly” because it looks like a vagina in a tube. The Fleshlight is a hugely successful product and legions of men swear by it. The device, allegedly, feels just like a real woman’s sex organs, save for the fact that it is a space-aged foam ladyflower stuffed into a hand-held pipe.
Fans of the Fleshlight love to write about their erotic techno-scabbard. The film director Kevin Smith publicly endorses it. These sex toy loyalists have multiple reasons why you (ME?!) should buy the most important invention since odor eliminating spray Febreze liberated us all from the tedium of laundry. They’ll claim that the Fleshlight will stop men from cheating. That it will help men improve their sexual stamina and staying power. They also claim that the Fleshlight will love you unconditionally, forgive you your manifold foibles, and hold you when you weep. I made that last part up.
Male sex toys are nothing new. The Fleshlight is just a fancy version of the prison masturbation device known as the “fifi.” I first found out about the fifi from a drunk who had done some serious time. A fifi is usually a lube-filled glove pulled through a toilet paper roll or stuffed into a rolled towel made tight with rubber bands. The drunk told me he use to fill his fifi with that night’s cafeteria mystery meat and when he told me that, my soul gagged. What is new, however, is the idea that it is socially acceptable for a man to buy a sex toy. This hasn’t always been the case. Traditionally, sex toys were strictly for women and their open-minded partners. Heterosexual men didn’t need them.
But that has all changed. Men are buying sex toys without shame and I almost bought one. Why not? I have been in an open relationship with my right and left hands my whole life. I’m single. Interacting in public with humans who have vaginas is so much bothersome work. I’m a liberated, modern man! I selected a Fleshlight, one of the ones that looks like a hoo-ha, instead of the other ones that resemble mouths and anuses. I clicked through to the payment screen and typed in my name. I typed in my credit card information and my street address and my mouse’s arrow hovered over the “complete transaction” button. Then I froze.
You know why I didn’t buy a Fleshlight? Not because it is a seriously creepy f**k scepter.
Vibrators are sexy little torpedoes. The Fleshlight looks like it was originally designed by Jack the Ripper. Why couldn’t Dyson have designed it? Because then it would be sleek and appealing, in a minimalist way. I stared at the payment screen and the Fleshlight and wondered, Will this be how terminators breed? I went through the pros and cons of buying an auto-milker.
Pro: I never have to leave my apartment.
Cons: a Fleshlight doesn’t whisper dirty secrets, leave claw marks on your ass or bite your thigh when your tongue hits the right spot.
But, ultimately, the reason I didn’t complete the transaction was because I was blessed with a vision.
For a brief moment, I saw myself in a tank top and boxer shorts, hunched over a sink full of dirty dishes on a Friday night, cleaning out my Fleshlight. I realized that I wasn’t as pathetic or lonely as I could be. Not yet. But I did go out and buy a new bottle of hand lotion and a new box of Kleenex, because I’m an old-fashioned kind of guy.