I met writer and photographer Rick McGinnis about ten years ago, but by rights, we should have known each other much longer. We both live in Toronto, enjoy roughly the same music, and therefore should have bumped into (or in my case, barfed on) each other sooner than we did.
When waxing nostalgic, we”d try to force our concert coordinates to intersect: “How about when Siouxsie played the Masonic Temple?” “I missed that one.” “Mojo Nixon and the Dead Milkmen at the Horseshoe?” “Nope.”
We finally got a hit when we veered from music to literature (or something like it). Turns out, Rick and I had both attended a “poetry” reading at the Imperial’s “upstairs.” Rick had heard that a girl he was interested in was going to be there. A sound excuse. Alas, I have none.
To this day, we can both recite the evening’s most outstanding poem. That’s because the verse, penned and performed by an otherwise forgettable female, was entitled “Vagina,” and went:
… for what felt like 40 solid minutes, a sensation exacerbated by the Imperial’s cheap old captain’s chairs (a seating design I”m willing to bet was based on the prototype for an aborted torture device).
Speaking of memory: I could be wrong, but I seem to recall this “poet” reading her creation aloud from … a piece of paper …
The Entebbe hostages had more fun.
If you”d beamed down to the Imperial that evening and told Rick that the “girl” would one day become Mrs. McGinnis, he”d have scoffed. Same with me if you”d insisted that, in far-off 2014, progressive women would still consider their lady parts worthy subjects of gravely important, highly pubic”I mean, public””conversations“ and “transgressive” feminist “art.”
After all, at the time (a good twenty years ago, minimum) dutifully purchased copies of Our Bodies, Ourselves were already gathering dust in the lonely apartments of countless middle-aged feminists, along with the mirrors and speculums they”d acquired”and maybe even the vaginas they”d once tentatively, awkwardly explored using same”on that book’s insistence.
Surely my generation had no use for that freaky hippie shit.
Wrong. The Vagina Monologues, first staged in 1996, inspired an incurable rash of copy-pussies, to the point where it feels like we”re all stuck watching a never-ending production of “The Vagina Sold-Out-Stadium-Marathon-Sing-Along-of-“You”ll Never Walk Alone.””
Here’s just a (fishy) taste of some recent cooze news:
Posted in May, the video “Women See Their Vagina For First Time!” has over 2,000,000 hits on YouTube. The gay male “artist and activist” (I”m just guessing, but come on …) behind this “project” salutes the “courage” of all the women who “shared their stories.”
(This guy also made a video called “Straight Guys React To Gay Porn!” The only really shocking thing about that one is that the “guys” he talks to are all claiming to be “straight.”)
Old and tired? Piss Christ. New hotness? Let’s call it “Pussy Christ.” Columbian “artist” Maria Eugenia Trujillo took a bunch of old monstrances and stuck pictures of vaginas where the Host usually goes. That’s the sort of “art” I dreamed up as a rebellious Catholic school tenth-grader, then quickly dismissed as being too stale and obvious. (My dentist had mass-produced Georgia O”Keefes all over his office, for chrissakes.) Hilariously, Trujillo’s so-called “Women Out of Sight” exhibit has now been censored.
No sooner had Gavin McInnes asked, in these very (virtual) pages, “Have you seen a gay man’s face when you say the word “vagina”?” than I learned of a Kickstarter campaign to fund a $37,000 art project called “Gay Men Draw Vaginas.”
And it’s just what it says on the box. The resulting crude (in every respect) illustrations range from faintly amusing to grossly anatomically inaccurate.
I was going to type “not surprisingly,” but it apparently the only people more confused about what vaginas really look like than gay men are straight women.
“Half of young women can”t “locate their vaginas,”” the Telegraph recently screamed. Except this “study” was commissioned by yet another women’s cancer charity, which tells you everything you need to know about its accuracy.
See, what these “experts” probably “discovered””but don”t mention”is that those young women just mixed up “vagina” with “vulva” because so does pretty much everyone else.