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Down the glory hole

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NOVEMBER 21, 2017

Last Saturday, I finally had a coveted brunch with my new queer friend group, who I have fondly dubbed as the “Five Fabulous Faggots.” Squished up against a window stall at Sconehenge Bakery & Cafe, our conversations quickly devolved into revelations of our darkest kinks and most sinful sexual activities.

“Clock it, there was this one gay couple that would prep for anal by douching with urine. Like, he would straight up piss in his boyfriend’s ass,” one person said, absently pushing around the mound of gloppy pinto beans left over from his huevos revueltos. “Then he would throat-fuck his boyfriend until he vomited. He’d use the bile and mucous to lube up his cock and have his way with that freshly pee-douched butthole.”

My immediate follow-up was: “Holy shit. Would the stomach acid make his ass tingle, though?”

Many view interest in non-conformist desires as a negative reflection of an individual. Society thinks bad people have “sick” desires or vice versa. Those who act on desires of pedophilia or vorarephilia demonstrate those fears to the extreme extent: some unconventional sexual obsessions can become incredibly dangerous to others and oneself.

But not all sexual desires are rooted in something twisted or unorthodox, nor are they completely unexplainable. Just like Cleopatra and the fake legend of her bee-filled gourd vibrator, exploring interest in these unconventional fetishes can also contribute positively to our psyches, both sexually and in our everyday lives.

I remember when I stumbled upon what is notoriously known as “the most disgusting story on the internet.” I was in my early teens, and I devoured the blog of “Blowfly girl”, a woman who described her obscure, “filthy” fetishes: she would dumpster dive for maggots, seek out roadkill and rotting garbage, and use them to stimulate her erogenous zones.

When I first read her stories in my early teens, I was completely repulsed and persevered in my readings simply to demonstrate that I was strong enough to digest “disgusting” content such as this. Years later, after a reread in my adulthood, I realized that my distaste transformed into curiosity as someone who struggled with self-hatred and self-harm, I was interested in why Blowfly girl continued her dangerous lifestyle.

Initially, her body too was repelled by the trash she inserted into her body. As I read more, I understood that when Blowfly girl finally allowed herself act on her desires, she acted on a self-hatred: she saw herself as “dirty” and believed she deserved to be polluted.

When I revisited her page nearly a decade later, rather than focusing on her visceral stories, which were already seared into my mind, I examined her profile description. She’s from Illinois, is currently working as a transcriptionist, and has a public email. Being able to find the accessible humanity within these otherwise taboo tales allows us to examine our preconceived notions of what is “normal” and what is not.

Until the 1980s, homosexuality was classified as a sociopathic personality disturbance in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) by the American Psychiatric Association (APA)

While the aforementioned brunch time recollection of cis-dick on cis-dick with friends wasn’t particularly surprising to me, the addition of unpleasant bodily fluids easily pushed the casual conversation from gossip to controversy.

Though the idea of homosexuality has been normalized in our collective consciousness, adding descriptions of sexual deviancy which are still controversial and little known continues to repel many. This layering is seen as grotesque, resulting in a general disconnect with sexual minorities. But when speaking with my friends and normalizing this ludicrousness, even for a few seconds, I was able to understand the complexities and dark sides to human sexuality.

Especially in Berkeley, it’s hard to realize that outside of our little bubble, people are still fundamentally disgusted by gay people and others outside of the heterosexual norm. This holds us back from examining further controversial sexual topics.

While I’m not trying to say that every paraphilic desire needs to be vindicated or rationalized, the fact that being gay was associated with sexual assault a mere 40 years ago highlights the idea that behaviors which were once classified as taboo can become part of our everyday consciousness. Even now, some classify those involved in the BDSM as having a mental disorder.

As shown by the evolving perspectives of being a glorious fag, we are slowly getting close to normalizing it as an everyday behavior. Nevertheless, we should not stop there. Accepting homosexuality isn’t necessarily where we end our progression and understanding of sexual deviancy. It is infinitely valuable to delve into topics we don’t understand and may initially make us recoil in disgust. Frequently, after thoughtful examination, finding the relevancy to these seemingly irreconcilable ideas helps us think critically and subvert an oppressive status quo.

I’ve found that my interests in these sexual topics have made me more interested in the unconventional in general. Not only am I more open to negotiating with sexual taboos and how they interact with our everyday lives, but I am also more open to understanding commentary that initially make me feel vulnerable and attacked. I’m constantly fascinated by creepy-crawlies, as well as the mechanics behind why horror stories grip us the way they do.

As Thanksgiving rolls around, I am thankful for all the grotesque kinks I have encountered in my life so far, and I am thankful for how they have made me into a more curious, adventurous person in all facets of my life.


Michelle Zheng writes the Tuesday column on sex. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @thezhenger.

NOVEMBER 21, 2017