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Falling in Love with Things
May 24, 2007 5:40 PM   Subscribe

The 41-year-old recognized and accepted his inclination when he was just 12 years old. It was then that he fell head over heels "into an emotionally and physically very complex and deep relationship, which lasted for years." His partner back then was a Hammond organ—he has now been in a steady relationship with a steam locomotive for several years. via
posted by cgc373 (44 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Little Joachim likes to treat his women like objects. And his objects like women.
posted by phaedon at 5:52 PM on May 24, 2007


I keep on writing a comment, and then deleting it, then writing a different one, deleting it, over and over again.
posted by Peter H at 5:53 PM on May 24, 2007


But does anyone have an emotionally and physically very complex and deep relationship with a website? Like, say, metafilter?
posted by Hildegarde at 5:55 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


You know, if we still had the image tag...
posted by uncle harold at 5:55 PM on May 24, 2007


Maybe this presentation isn't working, but I had no intent to make a LOLFETISHISTS post. People's interests fascinate me, and I'd never heard of objectophilia before, so I brought the matter before the MeFi public.
posted by cgc373 at 5:58 PM on May 24, 2007


Paraphilia is just plain fascinating stuff.
posted by cortex at 6:01 PM on May 24, 2007


...so stop dry-humping this post.
posted by phaedon at 6:02 PM on May 24, 2007


We're trying, cgc373, but it's taking a bit of effort here. Let us trying breathing deeply, and letting the snark dissipate.
posted by jokeefe at 6:02 PM on May 24, 2007


This sort of thing has been the subject of too many sketches (well, maybe just the one) for me to take entirely seriously. Interesting post, though.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 6:09 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


But does anyone have an emotionally and physically very complex and deep relationship with a website? Like, say, metafilter?

I have a deeply ontological relationship with MetaFilter.
posted by grouse at 6:12 PM on May 24, 2007


When the relationship's over, who gets custody of the handcars?
posted by rob511 at 6:13 PM on May 24, 2007


...but don't you envy these people? Imagine if you derived your deepest, most satisfying sexual and emotional fulfilment from something that:

a) doesn't lie, ever
b) doesn't cheat, ever
c) doesn't judge, ever

some fetishes really suck to live with. These, not so much.
posted by lastobelus at 6:19 PM on May 24, 2007


Peter H's offhand comment resonates with me so unexpectedly. Oh, frail humanity, what shall we make of ourselves...
posted by Firas at 6:24 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Reminds me of Crash, both the novel (JG Ballard) and movie (David Cronenberg).

"You can love your car...just don't looooooooove your car."
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 6:29 PM on May 24, 2007


From a relatively early age, I have been something of a fetish enthusiast. Which is to say, I am fascinated, intrigued, and somewhat turned on by other people's fetishes.

So while I personally can't identify or relate to have romantic or sexual attachments to an object, I found the article quite titilating.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:32 PM on May 24, 2007


I'm just happy Joachim quit playing with his organ and finally got back on track.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:37 PM on May 24, 2007 [5 favorites]


This would account for all of the over-the-top Moleskine-love I've seen on these intartubes.
posted by everichon at 6:44 PM on May 24, 2007


Dear God.

Seriously. Meteor. Now.
posted by eriko at 6:46 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


The metal miniature [of the World Trade Center Towers] has another tangible advantage: It doesn't rust when Sandy K. takes "a pleasant bath with it."

Huh. And here I thought I was done being surprised by the varieties of human sexual expression.
posted by everichon at 6:50 PM on May 24, 2007


Huh. And here I thought I was done being surprised by the varieties of human sexual expression.

Yes - but is it actually sexual? What would a sexual fantasy of the Berlin Wall look like? What do the objects do? What would the people do to the objects? The interviewees were vague on that subject, although it was implied that they were in fact sexually aroused. Is an asexual fetish...well, sexual?
posted by frobozz at 7:04 PM on May 24, 2007


What makes it an asexual fetish? That they're not having sex with the wall or the tower?
posted by cortex at 7:06 PM on May 24, 2007


Well, I thought that too, initially, but several of the people described in the article imply that they...interact with the objects (or some token thereof) in a way that I would recognize as sexual. I think we are meant to understand that Sandy K. doesn't stop at giving the North Tower good back scrubbing, say.
posted by everichon at 7:08 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


All of which I do find kinda funny, but certainly can't condemn, given the objective goofiness of some of the things I've been involved in in the name of getting my rocks off.
posted by everichon at 7:10 PM on May 24, 2007


A good article, but not on a par with one of the greatest pieces ever written in the English language; J.C. Rupp's classic The Love Bug.

Sadly, one is asked to pony up $25 to download the essay.

I'm telling ya, it's on par with Brian Peppers, the Nutty Buddy, Goatse, Tub Girl, that vacuumed cat, Trucknutz, and "Will it Blend?". Someday, when this essay hits the 'net for free, I will be vindicated on how unbelievably cool it is....
posted by Tube at 7:39 PM on May 24, 2007


Human sexuality is a fascinating and complicated thing. If these people feel fulfilled in their relationships with their respective inanimate objects, good on them.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 8:01 PM on May 24, 2007


How does a person masturbate a train? How do you know when it's sated?
posted by five fresh fish at 8:16 PM on May 24, 2007


And did the train give consent?
posted by five fresh fish at 8:20 PM on May 24, 2007


Yes - but is it actually sexual?

Yes. That is the whole point.

Think of it this way: back in the day (and today a teensy bit), homosexual behavior was questioned because, well, can love, romance, and sexuality exist between two people who were incapable of reproducing with one another? And lesbians -- since there's no "intercourse" going on, are they actually having sex?

For many people today (and probably most on metafilter) the answer to both questions, of course, is yes. A similar thing is going on here.
posted by Deathalicious at 8:24 PM on May 24, 2007


My partner is a psychology researcher who specializes in paraphilias, so I come by my love of the topic (so to speak) honestly. One of the interesting things about this is that, from the article, it appears that many of the people with this sexuality are women - women don't predominate in many paraphilias. The evolutionary psych explanation for this (as I understand it) is that women have always been able to be more choosy than men, so men have to be able to be interested in whatever the women want - even if it is fringe. In some men, this turns into a desire for only the fringe.
posted by arcticwoman at 8:49 PM on May 24, 2007


I mean to say, another interesting thing is that these fetishists view their objects of attraction (heh) as sexed, and usually as male. I guess I could see how a steam engine could be male, or a phallic tower, but a wall? A computer? I have a genuine interest in how this could be.
Of course, my other thought is that this could all be a fake. My partner researched objectophilia and found absolutely nothing in any journal indexed by her university, and everything she found on the net pointed back to one article. That seems a little suspicious.
posted by arcticwoman at 8:52 PM on May 24, 2007


...since there's no "intercourse" going on, are they actually having sex?

Dear me. I wouldn't have thought that wondering (I thought, rather mildly) about the workings of object-love would open me up to accusations of neoconism.


Ok: An object is not, in and of itself, a sexual being. As one of the people in the article mentioned, an object can become a non-sexual fetish and a loved object if it's focused on extensively ("their car becomes a fetish which they use to put themselves in the limelight"). People can also become sexually aroused by objects or use objects for sex without loving the objects themselves as one would love a person. But what happens (and how) when these two intersect? The people in the article seem to be anthropomorphizing the objects to a considerable extent. Did beginning to imagine a personality in an object lead to sexual desire, or did the desire (the fetish, if you will) lead to creating a personality to lavish human affection on? What I'm wondering about is the mechanics: both the physical, yes (what does one do about a forever unrequitable passion for a building?), as well as the mental: how well-formed are the personalities given to the objects? Are conversations imagined with the objects? How much do the people see them as 'things' and how much as 'people'?

And yes, when the object of your desire is fundamentally unable to return your affection either mentally or physically I do not think it is unreasonable to wonder where or if asexuality comes into play. But then, I'm an evil cynic who doesn't always believe everything people report of themselves.
posted by frobozz at 9:19 PM on May 24, 2007


Ok. Not nearly as creepy as furries.
posted by bshort at 9:33 PM on May 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


Which is to say, I am fascinated, intrigued, and somewhat turned on by other people's fetishes.

Doesn't that make you a metafetishest?

And try saying that after a drink or two.
posted by Zinger at 10:01 PM on May 24, 2007


Doesn't that make you a metafetishest?

Ooo, a metafetiphile.

You can always count on pharmaceuticals and sexuality to expand the English lexicon.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 10:13 PM on May 24, 2007


And I am aroused by the mere concept of Robert Blake smearing his feet with Greek cheese.
posted by rob511 at 11:07 PM on May 24, 2007


I used to know this guy. This wasn't written as a joke.
posted by darksasami at 12:55 AM on May 25, 2007


If steam engine guy moved to Yorkshire he could be rediagnosed as normal.
posted by biffa at 2:04 AM on May 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


"Of course, my other thought is that this could all be a fake. My partner researched objectophilia and found absolutely nothing in any journal indexed by her university, and everything she found on the net pointed back to one article. That seems a little suspicious."

Yeah, that was my first reaction too. I was wondering if Germany had an April Fools Day in May.
posted by klangklangston at 5:31 AM on May 25, 2007


"A latent appliance fetishist is a person who refuses to admit to his or herself that sexual gratification can only be achieved through the use of machines. Get the picture?"
posted by rlk at 8:01 AM on May 25, 2007


You can hardly imagine that I and Lord Bracknell would dream of allowing our only daughter - a girl brought up with the utmost care - to marry into a cloak-room, and form an alliance with a parcel?
posted by MotherTucker at 9:19 AM on May 25, 2007 [2 favorites]


So where do Real Dolls fit into this continuum of object fetishism?

*fondles iBook in a purely platonic way*
posted by jokeefe at 9:58 AM on May 25, 2007


I have an erotic relationship with fleshbot.com....does that count?
posted by UseyurBrain at 11:16 AM on May 25, 2007


MotherTucker takes the win. Brilliant.
posted by five fresh fish at 5:10 PM on May 25, 2007


I knew the Berlin Wall: a bastard thug; nothing lovable at all; a well-deserved fate.
posted by taosbat at 11:37 AM on June 8, 2007


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