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November 20, 2003
You live in Seattle, Dan. Are your local feminist correct? Is "Naked Sushi" offensive? Or is it good, clean fun?
Fish Food for Thought
Only in Seattle would eight "activists" fuming about the "prostitution of sushi" get respectful press attention and not the finger. "It's dehumanizing to be treated as a plate," one of the clenchbutts told the Seattle Times. "It provides a forum to see a human being as an object."
One might expect that the same media that crucified a Seattle City Council member--Judy Nicastro--for describing Seattle as "Mayberry with high-rises" would make an attempt to appear sophisticated about sex. But nope. Someone in Seattle is naked! Some bullshit artists are upset! And guess what? Around here that passes for news. Never mind that bars in other cities all over the world have held similar "naked sushi" nights without a peep of protest. Welcome to Mayberry, folks.
So the activists protested, the media reported, and the end results were entirely predictable: The anti-sex clenchbutts succeeded in making Bonzai Asian Pub & Bistro's naked-sushi night a sensation. An event that had been drawing 40-50 regular attendees now plays to a standing-room-only crowd numbering in the hundreds.
Memo to the idiot activists: It's 2003, not 1903. The historical problem with the objectification of women wasn't that women were treated like objects, ladies, but that women weren't treated like, or allowed to be, anything else. Now women can be objects when they wanna be (for fun, for love, for money, for a while) and then run off and be secretary of state or attorney general or the governor of Louisiana. Women are still objects--everything on earth, everyone on earth, is an object, no?--but they're no longer just objects. Women are objects and, oh, so much more.
Face facts, ladies: people always have and always will objectify the people they're attracted to. Men who wanna fuck women objectify women (at places like Hooters); women who want to fuck men objectify men (at places like Centerfolds). Gay men objectify other men (at places like Ashton Kutcher's asscrack), lesbians objectify other women (at places where Venus and Serena play tennis). The urge to objectify is universal, and so long as it's fairly and respectfully indulged, it's not offensive, not a problem, and not news.
And that's progress, yes?
More signs of progress: Objectification is a two-way street nowadays, with men coming in for their fair share. (Tarzan on the WB: I rest my case.) If there's anything unseemly about the objectification going down at Bonzai, it's this: How come no boy plates?
If Bonzai did anything wrong, FFFT, it was not using boys as plates at the same time it was using girls as plates. That's why The Stranger will be hosting Naked Doughnuts, a special happy-hour event at Bonzai this Friday night at 6:00 p.m. Two good-looking guys will be laid out on the bar and covered with Top Pot doughnuts. Bonzai Asian Pub & Bistro is at 704 First Avenue. Ogle the boys, eat the donuts, fuck the clenchbutts.
I am a 37-year-old soccer mom and an avid reader of your column, which I love--excepting the santorum stuff, which got tedious.
Do I have a problem? Oh, yes I do. After 15 years of great vanilla sex with a husband I adore, I am bored. I think we are really ripe to move beyond vanilla sex, but I have no idea what that means. Help me before I pull the sexy grocery boy into the minivan.
Bored in the Midwest
That's a tough one, BITM. "Moving beyond vanilla sex," you see, means whatever you and your husband and/or the sexy grocery boy want it to mean. I could tick off a list of kinks that you three can explore together-- pegging, vaginal fisting, watersports, spanking--but if you're a regular reader of this column, BITM, you're no doubt familiar with these kinks.
No, what you and the husband need--this is going to make me sound like Ye Olde Tyme Advice Professional--are better communication skills. You and the husband need to have a long talk. (Leave the sexy grocery boy out of it--for now.) Memorize these opening remarks: "Look, honey, I love you. But I'm bored. We've got to broaden our sexual horizons or I'm going to lose my freakin' mind."
Once you tell your husband how serious this problem is, you have to shift gears. If you go into this with a "long, hard slog" attitude, BITM, you're only going to make the problem worse. Approach it instead like it's a sexual adventure.
And your first adventure should be this: Each of you needs to draw up your own list of "beyond vanilla" kinks you want to/would be willing to explore. Nothing besides shit, animals, and children should be off-limits, and neither of you is allowed to say "no" to anything on the other's list until after you've made a good-faith effort to enjoy it.
Finally, BITM, I'm sorry you find the santorum stuff tedious, because speaking of santorum....
A brief note: For readers who do not live in the United States (I live in Canada), your continued references to a politician named Santorum are lost on us, and the references to the "frothy mixture" only serve to disgust. I appreciate that you dislike this arrogant public figure, but please spare us the descriptions of shitfoam.
Fretting Over Acronyms Needlessly
A brief riposte: As I am the only sex advice columnist in history, Canadian or American, to devote an entire column to the issue of who will be Canadian head of state when Queen Elizabeth II finally croaks, FOAN, which was no doubt lost on my American readers, I think my Canadian readers should cut me some fucking slack, yo.
When you first linked Rick Santorum's name to [description of shitfoam deleted], I thought it would never stick. I was wrong. If you put "Santorum" into Google, the first three hits are to his Senate website, the next two are CNN, and the two after that are about that frothy mix.
You might want to challenge all the computer geeks out there to make your santorum, not Senator Santorum's official website, the first thing that comes up on Google.
Santorum on My Mind
Good idea, SOMM. I hereby challenge computer geeks to move my definition of santorum to the top slot on Google.
As for the ongoing success of the Savage Love santorum campaign, I could fill the column with notes from people about their own use of the word and the unexpected places they've heard others using it--from the Wisconsin State Senate to U.S. military bases in Afghanistan!--but bowing to the delicate sensibilities of my readers, I'm going to refrain. Instead I'm going to put up a website where people can track the spread of santorum and share their santorum stories. Look for the URL in next week's Savage Love.