Savage Love Feb 7, 2018 at 4:00 am

Showing Up


I think HOPEFUL’s first issue is that as of now her ideal relationship model is somewhat vague even in her own mind because she has yet to actually practice non-monogamy. There is also a bit of tension in what she actually wants. On the one hand fuck buddy is a model she says she can accept, but I sense that she’s worried that her friend’s interest in a relationship means that he’ll be looking to end the fuck buddy connection with her once he’s found another woman to date. If so, then she’s looking for some level of commitment with a degree of emotional investment. She needs to sort out what relationship models she wants, be upfront about what she is offering, and trust that when sex partners say “yes” that they mean yes.

SPANK, on New Year’s Eve, I attended a party where I watched a woman bind and spank her male partner. She then offered to allow me to play too, and I asked whether he wanted to be flogged. He said yes, and I proceeded to flog him. I gave her a chance to flog him a bit too, and what was clear is that I’m capable of hitting with far more force and precision than his girlfriend. So perhaps the straight men you’re spanking like the physicality of receiving impact play from a man.
The bear question made me wonder what one would call a skinny, dynamic, yet hairy person. Fox is taken, so is cougar, would a wolverine fly?
And then it hit me: weasel! The image appeared in Garcia Marquez’ “100 Years of Solitude” during a fairly steamy sex scene as I recall when I first read it once upon a time as an 18 years old.
I looked it up so that I can share, and then it hit me that this part could be very controversial nowadays as it involves a young man sexually attacking his aunt who eventually gives in and they both enjoy it very much:…

Anyway, weasel it is unless someone comes up with a better mascot.
@2. It's Otter. And it's already a thing.
And I wouldn't be so hard on Craigslist. I've had some great hookups on there. Probably wouldn't let someone tie me up right out of the chutes, but it hasn't been a bad place to meet people. When they show...which is one in 10 times.
@ 3 Thanks, just looked it up. The term does exist, but isn’t a real-life otter some sort of an amphibian Gillette-tested bunny? It also appears as a bear sub category, yet how would you call a non-binarian somewhat-bi weasel?
Hmmm: "be sure to have a safe word!"

Safewords aren't magic and they don't stop someone who isn't listening to you. Unless you really want to be ignored when you yell "Stop!!" I recommend sticking with plain English and assessing early on whether the other person is attentive to your communication.

I also recommend not combining restraints with pain-play until after you've gotten to know someone pretty well.

That applies to gags too -- communication is important when you're learning what you both enjoy. If you do love gags, a common way to communicate "Stop!" when gagged is to make any three quick noises: three grunts, three stomps, three times rattling the chains. Confirm that safeword before the gag goes in!
HOPEFUL ~ Honesty is always the best policy, so after making it clear that your only down for a fuck-buddy, not a monogamous steady, gently remind the guy. “I like ya, Oscar, but remember what I said. No strings for now, maybe forever.” If he can live with that, cool. If you can live with that, cool. If either of you can’t, then part ways as friends or stay just friends if you can. I had a few relationships end because either I (or the woman) wanted more than the other did. Frustrating, but life’s like a bike. Keep peddling until you find the balance that works for you.
"Bear guest expert" Brendan Mack seems to expand the definition of "bear" into meaninglessness:
Gay, straight, hairy, smooth, fat, muscled—bear is a state of mind.

Smooth? Huh. I thought the one defining characteristic of "bear" was hairy.
"Bear" has already gone mainstream: on the current season of Top Chef there are three large dudes sharing a room who have branded themselves "the bears" and, as far as I can tell, only one of them is gay.
Myself @8 or is "big" the one defining characteristic? It seems to be according to Mack, as he is also including "straight" and "smooth" in his list but not adding "skinny" (or something equivalent).
HOPEFUL's letter is timely. I'm wondering what about her new lover is "relationship-ish" after just two weeks. They're both high on NRE and want to spend more than fuckbuddy amounts of time together? They're saying the L word (RUN!!) or using pet names? She's left a toothbrush at his place?

Maintaining distance when you're high on new-shiny oxytocin is difficult. But Dan's absolutely right: "somebody might get hurt" is a risk no matter how you define a relationship. I'd advise HOPEFUL to keep actively looking -- particularly for women, as they are so much harder to get -- and to purposely schedule non-New Guy nights. And don't say the L word, no matter how much you might feel it after a particularly great orgasm. She may doubt him if he says he's not getting attached, and he may in fact be fibbing about not getting attached. This is a conundrum I'm facing now: which is worse, staying with someone whose feelings you don't return and never will, or dumping someone who'll be devastated? What is one's responsibility, other than to lay out boundaries and stick to them? (Hope the commenters can provide their usual wise insights!)

SPANK should take a look at the "bottom" thread. One gay male commenter had some wise thoughts on why bi men (let's call these dudes bi) seek to let out their submissive and/or effeminate sides around men but not women. These guys may, as Dan said, in fact ask their girlfriends to spank them. But if they don't, they may be afraid of transgressing their assigned gender role, which isn't the case when they're with a man. Or just afraid the women will say no -- many women do, indeed, want their men to be "manly" and dominant. They're missing out, but we all have our preferences!

HAIRY: Bless you! Thank you for the not-all-straight-men I needed today. :)
There already are lots of words for big, hairy, bearded straight men: delicious, yummy, and yes please more more more.
RE @8: Yes, I think size is the defining characteristic of a bear, more so than body hair, because, see @3, there's another term for slender hairy gay dudes.
Fresh @12: HAIRY is looking for a universal descriptor for big, hairy, bearded straight men, not an eye-of-the-beholder one.
CMD @ 2 - In Spanish, it's "lobo", wolf, which I find a much better descriptor, since wolves are predators and we hunt bears...

RE @ 8, 10 - "Big" is probably the defining characteristic for the outside world. That said, the bear world is full of subcategories, and within that world, a bear is generally a big-but-firm-bellied hairy guy of a certain age (at least above 30). Flabbier guys are chubs. Younger bears are cubs. Etcetera.

At the start of the bear movement, 30 or more years ago, it was indeed more of a body-acceptance thing for everyone who didn't fit the mould of the clean-cut, manscaped, gym-going, fashion-following gay. Basically, the clones* of the 70s and early 80s had grown a belly and didn't care. Then of course it became much bigger (not really a pun, but intended) and the animal metaphors were stretched to their limit and beyond (much like a gainer's** clothes).

*The clones were short-haired (when no one else was) and mustachioed, and they wore levi's and a t-shirt; the basic gay look of that period.

**Gainers are big guys who want to get bigger. They usually pair up with encouragers or feeders
These letters were all hopeful, to coin a phrase, and happy. They were about people potentially about to forge more satisfying connections.

HOPEFUL is worrying about something that hasn't happened yet--her new sex partner wanting more than she wants to offer (monogamy or long-term commitment). Just be absolutely clear and consistent in your communications, and your partner/lover will never get the wrong end of the stick. It's possible that their dates feel relationship-ish because this is her style of relating, or because, for her, taking care of someone e.g. cooking or doing errands when she can, caring about his moods or preoccupations in life, has the air of an absorbing, exclusive commitment. But people can care in that way and not be, not allow themselves to be thought of as, exclusive partners. When her lover has other partners, or when she has, this may become her emotional weather more than it is now. Good luck with this relationship and with the others you will find, HOPEFUL!
I think if HAIRY starts referring to himself as a 'bear' in a self-loving way, those around him will pick up on it and maybe unconsciously start seeing him more positively too.
He's a real "Sasquatch" has the requisite size & hairiness connotations with an added dash of mystery mountain man thrown in.
Ricardo @15, thanks for the history lessen, very interesting. Agreed that "wolf" (impressive, majestic hunter) sounds much better than "otter". Also goes better with "bear", both being land animals.
* lesson
SPANK: "The weird thing is, the only guys I can find to spank are straight. [...] they make it clear they don't want anything sexual to happen. No complaints on my end!"

Do you mean you're *only* interested in spanking guys, not e.g. fucking them? That could be why you're not finding gay guys, who I would guess would be more likely to look for one of the many guys who will want to spank them and then go on from there?

As for why the straight guys are getting you and not a woman, I'd guess that, as with many activities, gay men who are willing to do NSA sexual activities with randoms (unpaid) are easier to find than women who do....
Re: HOPEFUL: How often do we blithely talk about "trusting your instincts" -- but then someone like HOPEFUL comes along, we cast skepticism on hers!

Hey, Dan and others, if she's sensing that "things have quickly become relationship-ish" with this new guy and that he really wants a romantic relationship that she doesn't, let's respect her intuition on this one.

I agree, she shouldn't dismiss the beneficial possibility of a LTR her. But she definitively ought to make clear her boundaries and expectations. And if the new guy starts to wheedle into an exclusiveness she doesn't want, be prepared to move on -- which, for a person of her sensitivity to others (note her genuine pain at hurting her ex when they broke up) won't be very easy.
Re: Spank
In my off-and-on-again adventures in BDSM It has been a hard and fast rule that there many more men who wish to be spanked than women into spanking. Therefore the spankee must either spend more $ and time and effort to find his Domme or else adjust his requirements, and branch out and become more inclusive.
RE @ 19 - My pleasure.
@11 Fan: my response to your question is if you're stating clearly how you feel and as far as you can tell, those feelings because they have stayed consistent will continue pretty much the same... then the other person has a choice. Leave and feel crushed or stay and be open to a more compatible love who might come along, while enjoying time with you.
If you've been straight with what you are offering, then yes, I feel you are covering your responsibility. Surely that goes for any relationship. The problem can arise because the other person can't/ won't listen and hear and respect. Then you decide to stay or leave.
I wonder whether it matters to the Spanker's spankees that he's gay.

In areas of activities that we might call borderline sexual, there are plenty of straight men who prefer MM even if FM is available to them. For some, it seems a way of keeping a fun activity outside of a possible relationship. For some it seems a way of giving them something down-roundable to round down. Some seem to find it a social activity and they're homosocial. There are surely more reasons, but those are what spring to mind first.
Ricardo- seconding the appreciation to your well-written insight. Are these animals confined to gaydom? Will it count as an offence to use them while describing other gender/orientations/situations?
Was auntie really raped?

Sb53 @ 23 seconding the disparity between supply and demand as to the situation described and the possible adjustments.
One can only hope that the recent cultural shift will bring some balance.
@11 - a thread about bi bottoms sounds interesting and somehow I missed it. Was it recent enough that the conversation is still going?
My daughter sometimes calls me mama bear.
I envision HAIRY as a big, cuddly bear (or Chewbacca from Star Wars?) and am with Harriet @17 and DonnyKlicious @18. I'll bet HAIRY would get even more intriguing and encouraging responses if he describes himself as a Chewie.
I've referred to myself as "the straight equivalent of a bear" on multiple occasions, but these days I just call myself a big galoot.
Ms Grizelda - And that does sound as if the Wainthropps could appropriate it without anybody's objecting.
@31: the word 'galoot' is tragically underused.
SACK: in medium to large cities, there are often 'munches', which are non-sexual meetups, usually at a diner, cafe, restaurant, etc. Wear street clothes, meet folks in the community, etc.
CMD @ 27 - "Are these animals confined to gaydom?"

If they are, it's only because straight men haven't started using them.

"Will it count as an offence to use them while describing other gender/orientations/situations?"

Personally, I wouldn't be offended, and as far as I know, no one has trademarked those terms. Obviously, someone somewhere will take offence, but who really cares? Those terms denote body types, which are the same no matter at what point of the sexual orientation spectrum one finds oneself.

Griz @ 30 - I must say, that is a brilliant idea.
Dan, your answer to HOPEFUL was good but incomplete. To me it seems like HOPEFUL needs to find some information and guidelines on how to do successful polyamory/non-monogamy. She has never seen nor experienced it before, and could use some resources to help her figure out how to navigate the new world open to her, especially with her new guy. I’m sure there are several books Dan could recommend, but the one that comes to my mind first is “The Ethical Slut” by Hardy and Easton. When I read it, the type of nonmonogamy the authors practiced was not right for me, but it opened my eyes and expanded my world! I gained so much insight! There were parts I skipped over, but there were parts that still benefit me now, ten years later. Telling HOPEFUL to go for it is good, but teaching her (by providing resources) will help her feast for a lifetime!
Thirding the thanks to Ricardo for the fascinating lesson on the history of bears and their genetic relatives.

North @22: Where did Dan say that HOPEFUL shouldn't trust her instincts? He spoke to her fear of hurting someone, stating that this is a risk everyone takes when they get involved, regardless of the type of relationship. That being said, Dan should have included your good advice about the need to maintain boundaries if one suspects one's partner is not on exactly the same page. She may indeed need to stay on guard against guilt trips and manipulation if her partner is just talking the talk about being fine with a casual relationship.

Malevolent @28: Here is the letter and discussion about bottoms:…

Bird @36: Excellent advice. There is so much more to non-monogamy than simply not being monogamous. HOPEFUL should read up on the mistakes poly folks before her have made and learned from in order to try to avoid some of the more common pitfalls.
+1 for CL it can be a place to find hookups asynchronously - good if you are too busy to be on apps all fay or have a specific scene in mind you can describe it up front as it’s like a really long old style personal ad in a newspaper, and it’s city based not geolocation within city so you a get wider socioeconomic range of people from the whole town not just dudes in the same neighborhood. also CL still good for selling stuff and finding apartments. but sure are a lot of scammers there YMMV
Lava @25: That's what I have done, and yes, I've taken the approach of "I've been honest about what I can and can't offer, it's your choice whether to accept these limitations." Being poly, I do hope they find someone else who can fit their needs, and I'll become the "secondary" I would prefer to be! Fingers crossed.
@ 27 10 years ago I would never have seen myself accepting a male Dom, but now well I could easily see myself enjoying the experience. I do not know why, it just seems plausible.
@30 and 33 Griz:....Yes! Yosemite Sam yelling at Bugs: "Hey! ya Long-eared galoot! Yore leavin' footy-prints all over mah Desert!"
Lava @ 29
I think “mama bear” is more of an attitude, being protective, than a reference to size and hair. That said, mama bear probably sounds sexier than mother goose.

Ricardo @ 35
I’ll go with my third grade infatuation: falcon. Feathery yet compact, always quick to dive and take off, eats anything from baby molls to adult snakes.

sb 53
The cultural shift I was referring to is the currently acceptable public display of anger by woman. It may lead to more women wanting to dominate men, yet may also bring a new wave of guilt-ridden, eager to be punished men.
Supply and demand disparity likely to stay the same after all.
@41 Mx Wanna Oh I see your point. The hashtagme too change. Yes, I am fine with women refusing to be manipulated by powerful men who try to get favors from female subordinates. I grew up with 3 older sisters and my attitudes and experience with women was very different from my buddies who were raised in a household where the women were in the minority or the females would accept something other than a strictly fair set of rules for the females as the males. Re oaken-bucket story: My mother upon hearing my (4th grade) complaint that my buddies did not have to wash dishes clean their rooms or do laundry ("womens work" I described it) She said to me: "There is no men's work or womens work....It is ALL just work"
@CMD 'Weasel' is a bad choice. It's a word that already has a lot of negative associations and is shorthand for someone who lies and manipulates or tries to shrike responsibility. 'Weaseling his way out'. 'Weasel-words'.

'Otter' is a better term cause otters are cute fuck. People like otters. I get the feeling very few people like weasels.
Hopeful's problem is that everyone always rounds up.

There's also the problem that she'll want a steady relationship sooner or later (my money's on sooner, adult rumspringas don't last especially long in my experience).

I think, the correct move is to have a sit down and get to the bottom of what he actually wants more. Suspecting your partner wants more is a recipe for a toxic relationship. The easy move is to make sure to mention stuff you're doing with other people (vaguely enough so that of course in reality you're having rockstar sex), put a cap on the number of friday/saturday nights you spend together, and rather than monitoring yourself to make sure you aren't sending the "wrong signal", spend that effort on making sure you're sending the right signal (the one that matches the relationship you want to have).

There's a well known training technique that ABSOLUTELY works on humans wherein if you completely ignore someone's negative behavior (negative meaning anything you dont want them to do, not a moral/ethical judgement thing) but make sure to praise their positive behavior, people will fall into line relatively rapidly. It also seems like a relatively kind way to be towards people in general.
HOPEFUL, don't worry too much about the potential for hurting someone. Like Dan says, that potential is always there. The important thing is that you are approaching this relationship (any time there is interaction between people of any kind, it's a relationship) respectful of his needs and desires, which it sounds like you are. Be empathetic. Be a friend. Be an excellent fuck. Above all, communicate with him where you are and where he is and respect where he is. Sounds like you're doing this already. You'll do great.

HAIRY, I just wanted to say, as far as this gay guy is concerned, apes, that is big, dumb, smelly oafs, are my kryptonite. No doubt there are a lot of women who'd agree with me. Feel free to appropriate the term bear. To me, orientation has nothing to do with it. Bears, real bears, are big, woofy, manly men and come in all different racial, age, and orientation varieties. I'd gladly hoist a platonic brew with you!
HAIRY might have the permission of every Bear in America to identify himself as a Bear, that's not going to protect him from being accused of appropriating. If it EVER becomes a "thing" FOR straight guys you can bet even these august internet halls will be publishing some amount of backlash.
Actually, now that I think of it, there's a chance bears may have been originally straight. I'm thinking of the novel Tickets to the Devil, set during a 1960's national bridge tournament, and one of the straight men who was, if not absolutely called a bear, at least considered the equivalent of one. Maybe MM types should leave the term to the OS inclined and come up with something new for ourselves.

I don't know why there's so much assimilationism in the thread, though. Do people really WANT there to be confusion about orientation and general approach to... various matters? I'm fine with letting straights keep full ownership of the term; I just envision confusion for both straight and gay users when someone just assumes the wrong orientation, and that road leads to all sorts of bad-for-gays consequences. It's bad enough that it's quite cool to be anti-gay again (even if in some circles it's Ironic Homophobia). LW seems amiable enough, but a few degrees of separation and I can easily see Trouble.
He could call himself S.Bear.. as opposed to
G.Bear. It's just a description of a body type, yes? Then he could go to the Bear naming committee and be verified.
I always heard that Woody Allen said, "95% of success is just showing up." Now I see that it was a little different ("80% of all life is showing up" is closer to exact) but it is STILL True--absolutely and uttery true!
Ms Lava - The concern may seem trivial, but wait until straight bears want bear bars to go mixed.
Venn @ 50 - Bear bars are first and foremost gay bars, and in every city I know, gay bars tend to be bundled up together in what is considered a gay area. Given that fact, I doubt many straight bears would ever realize that there are such things as bear bars, and therefore your concern seems mostly unjustified.
sb53 @ 42
Always loved cooking, floral apron a nice but not mandatory bonus.

Ms. Anon @ 43
Thanks. Apparently I overlooked the bad publicity weasels are not enjoying, while going with the characters as presented in Marquez’ book.
That said, aren’t otters too smooth to be considered a bear sub category? I’d very much prefer wolf/wolverine. The gendered term could be viewed as somewhat regressive to some, yet may add clarity and open possibilities to others.

venn @ 50
And what if bear bars go mixed?
CMD @ 50 - "And what if bear bars go mixed?"

In the improbable event that this should happen, I can foresee a whole lot of problems. Those bars are usually very cruisy, and that's the way we like them. Their existence is based on an appreciation for a specific body type, so obviously their patrons go there to "appreciate" that body type. As a general rule, though: straights have zillions of bars to go to, please leave us ours (coincidentally, "ours" means "bear" in French). Appropriating a term is not the same as appropriating a space.

Changing subjects : I'm still trying to figure out what kind of gays would call themselves "falcons", BTW. It's an excellent choice, I just can't see where it would fit within the bear community. So maybe non-gays can have that term all to themselves.
I think there would be too much confusion for bear bars to go mixed. No one would know whom to hit on. Unless a hanky code was brought back: pink hankies for gay, blue for straight, lavender for bi. Hmm, now that I've typed it, I think this would be a great system for alternative clubs too, which draw a mix of sexual orientations.

Note, tongue in cheek remark. I agree with Ricardo, some spaces should be left gay. This would not preclude different spaces for straight bears and their admirers though.

Why don't big, hairy straight guys call themselves lumberjacks?
@54 We've got a million different titles for various body types. We stop using them around age 27 or so, and there are so many that there isn't a consensus on a few overarching titles, unlike in the gay community. And there's not a generally implied personality type (unlike twink/bear). But yes even in youth we know well enough that to say them too out loud makes people think you're a dbag.

I think you're right about the outrage culture between straight cis men and gay men has lessened considerably (I would suspect it's coincident with the mainstreaming of the non-effeminate but not straight/macho-acting gay man in popular culture?). But I've always viewed a big part of outrage culture being outraged on someone else's behalf? In this case, Group C are upset that Person A is giving advice to Person B, you know what I mean?
Dadddy @ 54 - "Excluding HAIRY, categorizing male body types doesn't really strike me as a common straight male preoccupation"

I agree.

"It's curious that straight men haven't come up with a similar taxonomy for female phenotypes"

Fox/vixen, chick, pussy...

BDF @ 55 - "Why don't big, hairy straight guys call themselves lumberjacks?"

Because of this:…
I accept Ricardo’s and BDF’s argument.

I’d like to bring here a conversation originated on the readers round up territory, a weekly post we all scan to see if we got quoted and move elsewhere quickly once reality hits once again.

TheLastComment asked:
“Is there a female equivalent of bears? Someone please make one. I'm an enormous female and I need help.”
Here is my response, and I’m sure others can come up with great suggestions:
Big size associations often come across more negatively towards women, or so it seems, same with animals.
Here are some suggestions, assuming we can go beyond bear and a mandatory “mama” added to each and every one of them:
Whale (choose your favorite, a dolphin may also work)
Water buffalo (essentially a “cow,” yet sounds a bit more exotic)
Hypo- often associated with “ugly,” though I think they have a very cute ass.

Mr Ricardo - Here in the east, certain leather bars were called "bear bars". The habit may have been entirely regional and has perhaps died out. You are right that they were largely the last type of bar that would be a good choice to go mixed. Given how lesbian bars appear to be on life support or worse, I am not optimistic that gay venues will survive much longer.
Mx Wanna - I hope you meant "hippo". "Mare" would have an advantage in being female-gendered. I believe Zenyatta was (or is; I haven't heard of her death) a mare.
Not sure I've ever heard the term mama whale, CMD @59. Maybe I need to get out more.
Also, no. Whale? Hypo? Water buffolo(cow)?
I doubt any woman wants to use those terms, to describe herself.
If bear can be used by straight men, it's only fair to extend it's use to straight women, no?
I mean nobody can really own an animal's name, can they? I like Fan's idea of the return of the coloured square in the back pocket. You'd fancy someone, then have to wait till they turn around to see if they were available. Adds to the sexual tension.
Just playing Ricardo and Mr Venn. I agree, straights have got every street corner pub.
Koala ( cute and cuddly).
Galah ( f idiot, ie: flamin galah).
My favorite, Platapus: sure we could do something with that one.
Venn- Hipo it is. Thanks for the correction

Lava- Koala is indeed cute and cuddly, yet The Last wrote, “I'm an enormous female and I need help,” hence no-mama whale and such.

Back to Koala and its connection to lingerie… When Teddy Roosevelt went to Australia he was pictured holding a koala and everyone salivated. Later on a body suit type garment, some times referred to as a “onesee” nowadays, was introduced. Since it resembled the cutesy piece of clothing one could place over a toy bear, now called “teddy bear,” that specific piece of garment now used by adults is known as a “teddy.”

I'll submit "Panda" as a type that doesn't have a particularly negative connotation.

Whale/Cow/etc. Terrible. Use those at risk to your teeth.

I might have a certain weakness for Smurfs (tiny tomboys)

Robin/Sparrow/etc seems applicable for a certain type of skinny lady. Crane?

Giraffe, I think, is in use for tall girls (6'1" +) already; my experience some hate it some love it.
Sport @ 63 - Sorry, a panda is a gay male bear of Asian descent.
I’m about to suggest “Jamus”- Jah Moose- which is Arabic for water buffalo. It was also the term I once heard my late aunt referring in a loving manner to her somewhat larger frame son.
Not much about Jamus as a water buffalo came up in a recent google search, yet Jamoose did:…
Apparently Jamoose is a “respectful human being. They have the nice potato eyes. If you meet a Jamoose, catch 'em because they are very interesting humans.”
Ricardo- it seems like panda is also a lesbian term.…

Ricardo @57: "Fox/vixen, chick, pussy..."

But those aren't words for female types, they're words for women (and women's parts) in general. An attractive woman is a fox. Attractive in what way? In whatever way the speaker thinks women are attractive. All (cis) women have pussies. Perhaps only younger women are chicks, but someone who went to a bar to "pick up chicks" might emerge with a partner of any age. Vixen refers more to behaviour than to appearance. There's also "bird" here in the UK, roughly equivalent to "gal," but often used in a possessive sense ie "his bird."

I haven't heard of animal terms being used to refer to women of different sizes or shapes. Perhaps because most animals are furry and most women are not. I can see how certain animal equivalents could be flattering -- "flamingo" leaps to mind -- but something like hippo or manatee would not.

CMD @59: The female equivalent of a bear is a BBW. Or a SSBBW, which I suppose is the female equivalent of a grizzly bear (is that a thing, Ricardo?) or a "chub," as referenced @15. If by enormous one means tall, she's an Amazon.

Lava @61: Platypus might be a good term for a bisexual, of any gender. Or a gender fluid person. A koala could be a petite, hairy gay man?

CMD @62: Interesting tidbit on the origin of the term teddy, thanks!
Venn @ 60 - "I am not optimistic that gay venues will survive much longer."

Neither am I, thanks to Grindr and the general shift of social life to the Internet.

CMD @ 66 - Thanks for that bit of info! I do find it strange that lesbians would compare themselves with an animal that doesn't have sex much, thus reenforcing stereotypes. As for Asian bears, it's a bit more understandable, since it is based on geography, and they needed some bear analogy for Asians after having covered pretty much every other group. Lesbians, on the other hand, could have chosen any animal.

BDF @ 67 - "But those aren't words for female types, they're words for women (and women's parts) in general"

You're right, I thought about it after posting. Still, there's no lack of animal analogies concerning women, which is perhaps why it's no longer practical to find new terms to apply to specific body types.

As for "pussy", I was thinking of "pussycat", which is outdated, but who can forget… ?

Grizzly bears are a thing, but not the equivalent of SSBBWs (that would be a superchub). Think Grizzly Adams to get the picture: big, strong, mature, S&P hair. When their hair turns white, they get called (zero points for guessing right)... polar bears!

As far as female animals go, don't forget the cougar. (And happy magic number to me!)
BDF, Ricardo- Now that the “magic number” festivities are over…
Pandas are “cute.”
Cougar was already mentioned as an existing term.
We know BBW exists.
TheLast asked for an animal to represent “an enormous female.” If Jamus is not an option then I would go with a whale. Not the killer one, but maybe sperm or beluga or grey for a cougar whale. That said, a cougar doesn’t need to be grey. There’s also a blue whale, though not sure about purple.
Mr Ricardo - My great hope is that it proves circular; the death of gay culture will cause a rebirth of the need for it. Very Laura Murdoch Collins (the phoenix from Dark Shadows), although, if we're lucky, there won't be a fire.
Ms Fan - There would have to be some system similar to handkerchiefs; tolerance for SS approaches to Wainthropps would soon be exhausted. But that reminds me of something I don't think I've asked. What would be your ideal proportion between heteronormative, binormative and homonormative spaces - just for your own personal preference, not what you'd recommend more generally?
CMD, women are called whales, as a put down. Sportlandia is right, if you value your teeth never ever call a woman a whale.
If you insist on a sea creature CMD, how about dolphin. Big and cute.
@69 BiDanFan: Congrats on the magic number, you sly one, you!
@70 CMDwannabe: As someone who has been struggling with my weight and surrounded by small-nosed, small framed skinny women nearly my whole life, I have to agree with LavaGirl---it's not a good idea to call a large woman a whale. Dolphin works for me, too. Maybe otter.
I still think whales are cute and huggable. Their slippery even- if-hairy skin can be enhanced with an elegant silky long nightgown and a matching robe.
Such attire is sophisticated and sexy, and should not be confined to “maternal lingerie.”

Whales have big smiles regardless of their presumed oral hygiene.

Dolphins are possibly a tad too small in this case. And despite some impressive male dolphin erections we were very fortunate to be exposed to in the past year or so, they are still assumed to be an origin of the human female.
There’s also the risk of coming across as sexist and homophobic: their elongated mouths hint of a divine intervention very much in favor of felatio. A possible hint as to what “our father in heaven” may be all about.

Braces or not, Dolphins’ smiles often come across as inauthentic.

Dolphins are big enough. If you're so keen on using the word whale 🐳 CMD, how about testing it out? Approach a few big women and ask them how they'd feel about being called a whale.
Just make sure your will etc are in order before you do it.
To further put the kibosh on CMD's mermaidesque proposal, "dolphin" has already been claimed to an extent by bisexuals, as they are one animal which exhibits these tendencies. Sorry, CMD! TheLastComment appears to be in the minority of wanting to be equated with a large animal.

And speaking of bisexuals, I am aware that I have neglected to answer Venn's question @71, because I don't know how to answer it. I guess the proportion should mirror the distribution of gay/lesbian/bi/straight people in the world itself, but that's assuming an equal number of gays, bis and straights like to go clubbing, which isn't necessarily the case. Also, the question assumes the primary purpose of bars is cruising, which also isn't necessarily the case -- I'm thinking of venues geared towards live bands or niche music genres. In my world, people go clubbing primarily to socialise, dance and consume intoxicants; the single may also be lucky enough to "pull," but few seem to approach their night out with that as the goal. Firstly, there's Tinder which is probably more efficient, and secondly, women can spot a man on the prowl and tend to steer clear.

Certainly, in my ideal world there would be a few more binormative spaces than the current zero. Bi spaces seem to be limited to meetup groups and organised conferences/retreats; I have seen a few one-off bi club nights and a bi cabaret, but in a city as huge as London I'd expect far more. Bis just go to straight clubs if they want to pull an OS partner, gay clubs for an SS one. So yes, more events for the bi -- particularly the bi and poly -- would be warmly welcomed by me.
Not so fast Fan. Maybe TheLastComment is bi?
Pity, I was warming to that name for big straight women. A graceful creature, large yes.. but can they swim and surf. Speaking of surf: Happy Birthday 🎉King Kelly ( Slater).
Ms Fan - It just makes my RFR status show; I was including meeting groups and such and not just confining the thought to social life.

What I've been recalling of my own socially active time was that there was a bit of gender imbalance there. The bi women were the ones behind the Act of Union, especially after saying "gay-and-lesbian" instead of "lesbian-and-gay" was added to the Naughty List. Most bi men I met much preferred divided or sequential lives- some even went on to take it so far as opposing SS marriage because they liked having relationship paths that headed in different directions. The "gay-til-30" cliche was at least somewhat real in my area.

I was wondering, I think, whether binormative spaces could be considered a Least Common Denominator, or, thinking on a different plane, better for people who prefer to be agents rather than recipients.
@74: Seriously--no otter takers here in this discussion thread? They're furry, cuddly and cute. I guess dolphins are out of the running, as they have been classified as bisexual (re BiDanFan @77).
@75 CMDwannabe: My condolences to your surviving family and loved ones, should you further express this point of view with any large framed woman.
@76 LavaGirl: Agreed and well said.
Thanks Grizelda. The new Randy Rainbow 🌈 is great. Randy can nail it when he's on target. Funny as. I'm finding if I'm listening to music or looking at vids that make me laugh, I'm staying ahead of the wave.
The wave of depression I mean. It's all just so dark politically, I refuse to go under.
So how you doing Grizelda. Your music.. what's happening there?
Look, one of you asked, she specified, I came up with suggestions, they were all rejected, she left me while fighting for her, and now some angry cis women are ganging up on an otherwise fairly innocent wanna bee.
Apparently Sportlandia’s kindergarten bullies are here to haunt me….
Jamus is still my first choice.
Venn @79: Apologies; the question stemmed from a discussion specifically about "bear bars" and what one should do to indicate one's orientation if they became mixed, so "bars" were the context I had in my head. Certainly, there are less venue-centric bi "spaces" (which again I interpreted more literally). BiCon and meetup groups. Alternative and fetish spaces are more pan-orientational, too. I guess what I'd most like to see is less assumption of a monosexual orientation based on a person's current relationship. Example: a friend who works for the US government was complaining that his LGBT group at work was mainly made up of "straight married women." It didn't occur to him that perhaps they were bi married women. And here's the kicker: he, himself, is bi!! There's the lack of binormativity which I'd like to see change.

Griz @80: Otters were mentioned way back at comment @3. They are already part of the gay animal kingdom.

CMD @83: What!? I didn't see TheLastComment come back to castigate you for failing to come up with an animal term for an enormous woman that would be deemed positive by a majority of women. Rest assured no one is "angry" with you for making suggestions we don't think would go over well. By all means go ahead and ask if she's happy with the term Jamus, or whale. I strongly suspect most women would prefer to stick with BBW, but differing opinions should not be construed as "bullying." Hope you're ok this week.
Ms Fan - Quite understood. It's nice to know that my being scrupulous about using OS and SS when not specifically meaning straight or gay is at least a small step in the right direction.

I'd be only too happy to give you a thriving bi community if I could. Would it be self-sustainable? - there's the question.
Now, I am starting this post at the time when I would normally be listening to the podcast, but have heard the beginning of the introduction and want to get this out the way first. Multiple times in the past few days I was wondering why Mr Savage had had nothing to say about Mr Rippon, but it appears that he was saving this for the podcast rant. I want to get this down before listening, as I came here with this post firmly in mind.

One of my newer phrases lately, which is almost certainly not original, is that something has really Frosted My Flakes. The flakes are well and truly frosted this morning, after I've seen another victory effectively turned into a loss.

I'd just read an article making a half-hearted attempt to explain why the standings of the men's free skate in the team competition ended up as they did, placing skaters who fell over Mr Rippon. What was said was not inaccurate - that the scoring system adjusted after Vancouver in 2010, when Evan Lysacek played safe and managed to nickel-and-dime his way on points to the gold medal in the men's individual competition over a clean programme with a quad. (It left out that Vancouver itself was a reaction to Torino, where Jeffrey Buttle took bronze after working out that it was better to fall on a fully-rotated quad than do a safe triple.)

What the article completed omitted was the context of the situation. It was the team competition, and the US was in third place, narrowly ahead of Italy and behind Canada and Russia. The practical chance of improving from bronze position was slim. Beating the Italian man was far more important that trying to beat either the Russian (behind whom he finished by a narrow margin) or the Canadian (who, being widely considered the skater with the best skating skills of all time, was a near-lock to win that segment even with falling, as he did). Because of this, Mr R went for a clean skate, didn't attempt the quad, beat the Italian skater, and strengthened the US hold on medal position. Had Mr R attempted to grandstand and bombed, the pressure on Ms Nagasu in the women's free skate might have prevented her successful attempt at the triple Axel, and the team bronze medal could have slipped away. It was a textbook case of being the ultimate team player, completely omitted by the article.

We now come to the comments. I can live with such things as, "Should have practised more instead of taking pot shots at the VP," given the incompleteness of the article. One does not have to be Rumpole to make the case that any citizen should respect the presidency enough to go to the White House willingly if invited regardless of one's opinion of the occupant (or perhaps even more because of a disdainful view). This applies both ways. In the main, though, the comments nearly universally take the view that Mr R is whining about his scores and that he "totally failed" - along with the typical anti-gay chorus that he can't compete with men and should have entered the women's competition. There are even those who see in this yet another victory for Pres Trump.

So an historic first (in a way a double first, as a member of the gold Canadian team came out after Sochi) is well on the way to being considered an epic failure. I am now going to listen to the podcast to see if Mr Savage helps the cause or hurts it. His record on figure skating is iffy, going solely on performance value and not even recognizing technical skill in elements or lack thereof. If he turns this into another Shillary moment, it. will. not. help.
(So the rant was apparently recorded after the stories about the supposed meeting but before the competition.)

Oh, gag me. He went the closet-baiting route. Such an unforced error. That is just the sort of thing likely to turn those conservatives whose marriages Mr S has saved into Trump voters.
@52 Mx Wanna
My Miss N. has a very lacy fem apron but I have been forbidden to wear it. She is no fun, sadly. I have my solid- red " kiss the cook" linen number instead, and will drag it out for the annual "café night" on St. V -day.
BDF @ 84
What “what”?
I had some fun exploring the animal queendom this week and thought I’ll conclude it in such manner.
Genitalia wars and kindergarten bullies weren’t really on my mind. Only whales, water buffalos, and impressive dolphin erections.

sb53 @ 88
Wouldn’t it be nice if she handed you a surprise box after dessert. “Go ahead and change dear, I’ll be waiting by the fireplace.”
Happy V-day to you and to everyone else.
@89 Yes! Now what fun that would be! Happy V-day to you, and may you get some surprise lingerie for your lovely self!
Venn @85: Acknowledged and appreciated, thank you! :)

CMD @89: I missed the sarcasm in your post, glad you were only poking fun. Happy V-day (though I do not celebrate) to you too.

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