Penthouse in a Bag

Davis stood in the back corner of the convenience store, nervously eyeing the owner. She was old, an Asian woman, who probably didn’t care. Or maybe she did. Maybe she would lecture him and call his step-mother.

Heart pounding, he snapped the Penthouse from the rack and approached. The woman took the magazine, slid it into a paper bag and waited to be paid. Penthouse in a BagHe walked outside, pausing at the corner of the parking lot to slide the magazine into his pant leg.

“Hey.” His step-brother, Flynn, appeared behind him. “Can I see that after you’re done?”

Davis redid his shoelace. “Huh?”

“That Penthouse.”

Davis couldn’t understand how he had appeared, where he had come from. “Yeah, okay.”

It was a good issue, four pictorials, lipstick lesbians, the centerfold Pet leaning back with a cigarette in her hand. He took the magazine to Flynn and went back to his room, laying uneasily on his bed. He never spoke with Flynn. They had nothing to say to each other. And now this. Was this some kind of turning point? Would they talk about the naked women? Which was best? What they liked? What they did as they looked at them? What were they supposed to say? Penthouse in a BagThere was a knock. Davis sat up abruptly, crossing the room and opening the door to find the magazine, face down on the beige carpet, Flynn’s door closing down the hall.

Vaughn & Staples’ “Saga”: More Sci-Fi Rubbish

In the continuing quest for inspiration in writing my science fiction book Aqaara, I was recommended the graphic novel series Saga by Brian Vaughn and Fiona Staples. Vaughn & Staples Saga More Sci-Fi RubbishI was most interested in its apparently profound treatment of sexual themes and imagery, and yet was disappointed to realize that it is neither thought-provoking nor titillating. Vaughn & Staples' "Saga": More Sci-Fi RubbishThe work is nothing more than a morass of simplistic morality propped upon a landscape of superficial sexuality in which – surprise! – a transgender character recently appears. The story-line is vapid, the dialogue interminable to say nothing of the farcical content. Vaughn & Staples' "Saga": More Sci-Fi RubbishBut worse of all are the references to the authors’ own process themselves, their love of books and killing off their babies.Vaughn & Staples' "Saga": More Sci-Fi Rubbish Which they never did and really should have.

Ice Friday: Michel Foucault’s “The Use of Pleasure”

What one must aim for in the struggle to control the desires was the condition of “ethical virility” according to the model of “social virility”. In the use of male pleasures, one had to be virile with regard to oneself, just as one was masculine in one’s social role. In the full meaning of the world, moderation was a man’s virtue. Ice Friday: Michel Foucault's "The Use of Pleasure"To be immoderate was to be in a state of nonresistance with regard to the force of pleasures, and in a position of weakness and submission. In this sense, the man of pleasures and desires, the man of non-mastery (akrasia) or self-indulgence (akolasia) was a man who could be called feminine.*

*Taken with a grain or two of salt.