My mother and many of her second-wave feminist peers view pornography as an institutional ill that is degrading to women and damaging to developing sexuality. She believes that the camera-ready angles, waxed and plastic body parts and pervasive depiction of extreme acts as “normal” distort human sexuality and give young porn-viewers a whole bunch of false and dangerous expectations.
My mom is a smart lady, and she’s not wrong. While I agree that some porn (okay, most of it) fits the bill she describes as damaging, I don’t find the filming and viewing of sex acts as objectively offensive. In other words, I think that porn is not inherently problematic, but its content often includes problematic ideas and attitudes. I also believe when viewed as entertainment, porn can be a positive element in the repertoire of adult sexuality, Keep reading »
As a broke, 27-year-old graduate student slowly recovering from a messy break up, I posted a profile on OkCupid in hopes of meeting a guy who did his own laundry and didn’t kill animals. Despite my Baptist parents’ and grandparents’ longstanding encouragement to find a God-fearing gentleman, my standard was slightly lower. A man who was more or less moral would do. Keep reading »
I should have known the relationship was doomed the moment he brought up his all-consuming hobby: race car driving.
I spent an entire summer in the sticks of Ohio and Pennsylvania, feeling like an idiot as my then-boyfriend Sam, his dad, and a friend worked on the car, which was black and blue with a giant wing on top. It looked like an alien bug on wheels. The first time I came to a race, his mom told me to dress casually, but my outfit (jeans, a striped T-shirt, red flats, and big sunglasses) might as well have been a ball gown compared to the giant silk-screened shirts everyone else was sporting. Sitting in a lawn chair in the driver’s pit, I folded the cover of The New York Times magazine to hide the abortion cover story — that wouldn’t have gone over well — and offered everyone soy nuts. From the stands, I watched cars flame out, crash into each other, and kick up dirt. I prayed for one of the cars to mow me over and texted all my friends, “One of these things is not like the other….” Keep reading »
After a slew of flings that consisted of more games than the World Cup, I was practically in heaven when I met Jake – an intelligent, successful, Southern gentleman who eerily resembled New York Mets heartthrob David Wright. Keep reading »
I met Donny* for a drink at 6 p.m. on a Sunday. When I walked into the deserted restaurant, soaked from the downpour outside, I didn’t know he was destined to become the pettiest, stingiest and most pitiable man I’ve ever gone out with. Keep reading »