Thursday, March 15, 2007

Let's talk about sex.

I was inspired by a post over at Fried Dreams to "Netflix" a show on HBO called Cathouse. (Is Netflix a verb now? I'm going to use it that way even if it isn't.)Apparently Cathouse is both a documentary and now a series. I got the documentary.

It is about the Moonlite Bunny Ranch in Nevada, a legal brothel. On the one hand I'm horrified. My inner feminist screams out, "What?! You rented a documentary on prostitution? And one that glorifies it no less. I am ashamed of you. Deeply ashamed. You are dead to me." On the other hand I'm fascinated. My inner, and much more quiet, sexuality whispers, "Psst. Look what those girls are doing. Look how comfortable they are with their sexuality. If they can do that sort of stuff with total strangers, maybe you can loosen up a little."

I'm not turned on by this documentary. Ok, not much. I'm sorry, but anytime there are certain aural stimulations (pardon whatever puns you happen to find there) a person can't help but get a little randy. Even if at the same time you're looking at the screen in squeamishness through your embarassed fingers. So anyway, I didn't watch the video to get any sexual pleasure. (Holy hell I'm going to get people dropping by this blog now via nasty searches.) I watched it because it's fascinating in a sociological way. I'm curious. Who goes to these places? Who works in them? It's kind of like when Mister Rogers went to the crayon factory and showed us how they were made. "I had no idea that's how they did that! Fascinating!"

I will say that Cathouse was not an expose in any way. They portrayed the Moonlite Bunny Ranch as kind of a Disneyland. Heck, the girls even have tea on Thursday afternoons. These were awfully happy hookers. There were no signs of drugs, or psychological problems, or even denigration - besides the obvious prostitution. All the ladies were in control of their lives and making lots of money (or were edited to look that way). If I didn't know better, it could have been a recruiting video. "Want to meet nice people from a variety of backgrounds? Live an active lifestyle? Make your own hours? Great health plan!"[they see a doctor once a month]

So anyway, back to my whispering sexuality. For a very long time when I was married I pretty much kept my libido, or at least my sexuality, in a drawer. The reason for this was because I had several incidents where my overtures wouldn't get a response. When you meet someone at 18 and learn that taking (personally uncomfortable) steps to turn someone on and then get rebuked, as in you get ignored, you stop trying and feel very self-conscious about the whole process. Rejection is a very strong hurdle to get over. So, ignoring my inner feminist, I'm trying to take inspiration from the ladies of Cathouse. I'm not saying I'm going to install mirrors on the ceiling or purchase a suitcase full of paraphenalia, but I could stand to gain a little more confidence.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels that way. I think sex comes with a lot of issues and baggage and hangups. I'm sure the ladies of the Bunny Ranch have plenty of their own that have lead them to this particular career. However, whatever their issues, they are certainly not inhibited when it comes to sex. And I for one know I could use a little less inhibition.

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