Article by Lauren Rosewarne /
The Conversation /
March 03, 2015 /
Finally! A selfie stick I can actually get behind. Or under. Or over, even, depending on my mood.
A couple of weeks ago, in a splendid scene of suburban domesticity, I’d made a batch of gnocchi and we were eating them at his table while watching a little porn.
Not the kind I’d normally pick – a squirting video where a creepy guy (wearing an already-damp t-shirt) deploys the “gold standard” G-spot stimulation technique – I gestured to the supine lady still pulsing on screen.
“This,” I said, jabbing my finger at her contractions, “is why I don’t understand how women get away with faking orgasms.”
Rhetoric of course. In fact, I understand it perfectly well.
Such material has taught us the all-importance of ragged breathing, of passionate pleas to the almighty, about the need for hair-tossing and groaning as essential proof that we’re having a jolly time.
As opposed, say, to providing any information whatsoever on the physical stuff happening to our bodies during these moments of great splendidness.
This is of course, completely unsurprising. I have a journal article coming out shortly with a focus on hetero anal sex. While sure, the act is seldom ever presented on screen, equally it’s important to recognise that we’re rarely given enough information in mainstream scenes to know which hole is being penetrated anyway.
Similarly, when it comes to orgasms on screen invariably there’s insufficient information for us to see anything of a female climax beyond her outward performance. Sure, with some porn – the aforementioned squirting kind being an example – the camera gets close enough to show muscle contractions – but these displays aren’t common and, in fact, are often absent from the screen because they’re, surprise, surprise, absent from her sexual experience.
Enter my vigorous support for the vaginal selfie stick, a new sex toy reported on in The Independent yesterday.
Sure, it’ll eventually get packaged up as further “proof” of the extent of contemporary narcissism.
Equally, yes, it’ll end up as yet another selfie/belfie story that neglects to note how humans have been making images of themselves ever since they could carve into a cave wall, hold a paintbrush or set up a tripod.
For me however, I just see the Svakom Gaga Camera Vibrator – $180 and happily splash-proof! – as posing a host of really exciting possibilities.
Firstly, it’s yet another teeny tiny step towards the cybersex future we were promised and which, alas, has thus far consisted of a lot of self-diddling and too much typing.
Secondly, it’s another example of the happy mainstreaming of sex toys in a world that still has some curious ideas about self-pleasure.
Most of all however, I see it as, quite simply, a handy tool to get a bloody good look at what’s happening downtown.
Sure, we can go back to our bunks and use a mirror/smart phone, but my empirical research indicates that this involves a hell of a lot of hokey pokey. If you’re wanting to continue looking right through to orgasm, holding a mirror or recording device and keeping it at the right angle while deploying your hand or a sex toy is fraught, bloody frustrating, and potentially even necessitates a trip to the chiropractor.
A camera and suitable lighting built into a vibrator however, is the perfect multi-tasker.
No, I don’t subscribe to the Germaine Greer taste-your-own-menstrual blood thing. I’m a vegetarian afterall. That said, one thing from second-wave feminism that I still consider really, really important is shaking off the squeamishness about our own bodies. About overcoming the mystery of it. About not only knowing how an orgasm feels but getting to watch see what it actually looks like. Getting a good and proper squiz at our amazing bodily mechanics.
Sure, porn offers this up. But there’s something very worthwhile about seeing our own pleasure zones in action. To see that, hey, maybe they may not look the genitals in porn, but that they get the job done every bit as spectacularly. And symmetry is so dreadfully overrated anyway.
© Lauren Rosewarne