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This is what normal human genitalia look like
March 1, 2009 9:04 AM   Subscribe

Variations in normal human genitalia. All links NSFW. Breasts (of women who have not given birth; of women who have), vulvae, and penises. Previously, erection photos.

The "vulvae" and "penises" links are from the UK's channel4embarrassingillnesses.com, which offers videos and articles addressing embarrassing body questions. There's an anatomy flash game, too.
posted by cybercoitus interruptus (233 comments total) 63 users marked this as a favorite

 
[more inside]

I'll say.
posted by GrammarMoses at 9:07 AM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


I’ll Take Door #1, Monty!
posted by gman at 9:08 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


It is nice to see these in a non-erotic context. It's a good reminder of the real-world.
posted by LSK at 9:10 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


LOLNORMALHUMANGENITALIA
posted by Jofus at 9:15 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Oh, so that's shrinkage.
posted by jonmc at 9:15 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Nice post. It will never cease to amaze me how perversely TV has messed up my understanding of other women's bodies. As a straight woman who's seen way more real-life naked men than naked women in her adult life, I am fully cognizant of the range of male body types. But I still assume, on a completely unexamined and irrational level, that most men expect most women to look like actresses and models. I am not even going to guesstimate how many hours I've spent comparing my body to the nude body doubles I see on TV because it will drive me up the fucking wall.
posted by zoomorphic at 9:18 AM on March 1, 2009 [24 favorites]


There's also the Human Variation Project.

"The project is based on the simple premise that every body is beautiful by virtue of being human, and that every body has a basic aesthetic value that should "
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:20 AM on March 1, 2009


More volunteers wanted at Snap Your Chap
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:21 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


The project is based on the simple premise that every body is beautiful by virtue of being human,

No offense, but that's just a platitude. Physical attraction is definitely a matter of taste and as we all know, there's no accounting for taste, but let's not create an aesthetic Lake Wobegon Effect here.
posted by jonmc at 9:25 AM on March 1, 2009 [14 favorites]


I *so* want to use the teenage videos for the health class I teach. But this is America, and I'm supposed to worry about getting fired. Oh the quandary that is ethics versus Insane American Discomfort With Teenagers in Regards to Sex.

sigh.
posted by RedEmma at 9:29 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


let's not create an aesthetic Lake Wobegon Effect

Better that than an aesthetic Cuyahoga River* effect.



*A river in Ohio that once was so polluted that it caught fire.
posted by scratch at 9:31 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Man, dicks are just straight up ugly. Look at all those awful gnarled dog-dorks, foreskins all drooping like wet tissue paper. Yecch. Or maybe it's a selection bias and it's just British dicks that are ugly, I don't know.
posted by DecemberBoy at 9:32 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I don't think I know any woman who doesn't appreciate the beauty of a a female body over that of a male's.
posted by gman at 9:36 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I love that a warning box about the penises appears after the page loads all the images.
posted by Science! at 9:37 AM on March 1, 2009 [8 favorites]


gman: "Yeah, I don't think I know any woman who doesn't appreciate the beauty of a a female body over that of a male's."

This has been done on MetaFilter, I'm 90% sure. Where ever it was it sure was fun to watch, but not on a Sunday morning.
posted by Science! at 9:38 AM on March 1, 2009


It really depends on the body, gman. Some men have great bodies. Some women have bodies that look like sacks of shit. Personally, I don't think I know anybody who doesn't appreciate the beauty of a beautiful body over one that looks like a sack of shit, regardless of the gender of the owner.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:39 AM on March 1, 2009 [14 favorites]


I don't think I know any woman who doesn't appreciate the beauty of a a female body over that of a male's.

*raises hand* Now you do.

Not that I am repulsed by female bodies (hell, I've got one); I think they're just fine, and aesthetically and empirically they're beautiful. But male bodies are also beautiful, and happen to be my particular preferred flavor of eye candy, so...yeah.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:39 AM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


penii but especially testicles are just plain weird.

do you know your testicles are moving all the friggin time? they go up and down and up and down and on and on. and am talking not during coitus either. they just do that while your standing naked in front of me in the bathroom while your brushing your teeth.

it's fascinating and mesmerizing but totally WTF to look at this blobbie things hanging from your manstalk moving on their own volition.

it's like there's a whole mutual of omaha wild kingdom moment there in between your legs along with a 5 car collision. i just can't take my eyes of the darn dangly things.
posted by liza at 9:40 AM on March 1, 2009 [33 favorites]


If I ever get into art dealing, I'm totally going to call the place I open "Normal Breasts Gallery."
posted by neroli at 9:41 AM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


Totally true, PeterMcDermott. And I don't know you, EmpressCallipygos.
posted by gman at 9:42 AM on March 1, 2009


And if you people could please stop quoting my statement... an "a a female body" is a tad petite for my liking.
posted by gman at 9:44 AM on March 1, 2009


Haha liza!

Probably on mefi before, but sweater muffins do the same thing, too! (sfw, in the name of SCIENCE!, flash)

--

Man, I feel so much better about myself after looking through that bouquet of penii.
posted by porpoise at 9:46 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Are breasts genitalia?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 9:49 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I *so* want to use the teenage videos for the health class I teach. But this is America, and I'm supposed to worry about getting fired.

Fired hell, I'd be more worried about getting arrested and spending the rest of my life on some registry barred from coming within 10,00 feet of anything. As far as teens and sexuality are concerned ignorance is strength.
posted by MikeMc at 9:54 AM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


As for you boys, don't feel left out. If you glance down between your legs, where your vagina should be, you will see an odd-looking pink sac containing two little ugly things. Go ahead, take a look right now, but keep your hands on the book (more about that later), Quite a surprise, wasn't it? Well, the funny pink sac is called your "scrotum" (skro-tum) and the two ugly things are called "testes" (teh-stees) and are why you can never know the ultimate, inexpressible joy of motherhood.

Believe it or not, your scrotum will respond to sudden changes in temperature, quickly raising or lowering your testes to maintain them at a constant heat level, something seen nowhere else in nature except by those few who have mastered the proper techniques of marshmallow toasting. If you don't believe me, try rubbing an ice cube against your scrotum and see what happens. Now, quickly try a lighted match. Now another ice cube. Another match. Faster. Cube. Match. Cube. Ma -- aha! Didn't your mother tell you not to play with matches? All joking aside, this is simply another example of the wonders you can find in and around your own body, stuff that has often led to many important scientific discoveries. For example, when my husband, Ronald, was in the Boy Scouts, he used the same natural principle for a homemade thermometer and won a merit badge in meteorology ...

Nancy Reagan's Guide to Dating Do's and Don't's (Doug Kenney, National Lampoon, some time in the twentieth century).
posted by rosebuddy at 9:58 AM on March 1, 2009 [16 favorites]


(Link.)
posted by rosebuddy at 10:02 AM on March 1, 2009


but let's not create an aesthetic Lake Wobegon Effect here

I'm ok with finding the beauty in people as opposed to being forced fed that everything except models are ugly.

Jon, I doubt you meant the opposite of what I just wrote, but I do take exception with your sentiment the sentiment you were expressing. The human body is beautiful to look at, but that doesn't mean a person has to like, want or desire a particular body shape. If you haven't, take a life drawing class or two, it's interesting to the play of light and shadow on the different body shapes.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:02 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Is there a way for this to be about the FPP in particular, and not about how people like different body types and genders? Because I'm pretty sure everyone knows that by now.
posted by Nabubrush at 10:08 AM on March 1, 2009 [8 favorites]


There is also the Height/Weight photo project, which uses fully clothed photos. I'd really like to see all of those slots filled, so if you're a Mefite with a height/weight combo that hasn't been submitted there yet, you should send in a pic.
posted by dgaicun at 10:10 AM on March 1, 2009 [5 favorites]


I don't want to offend any female 'filterites with augmented breasts, but as a matter of personal preference, I prefer even "less than perfect" natural breasts over "perfect" augmented ones.

Mrs. Red had fairly perky breasts when we met, but now, after 15 years and three children, they are a bit saggy. They are just as beautiful to me.
posted by SteveTheRed at 10:12 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


I don't need to see these pictures to know that, like Ugly Bat Boy, I am normal. Perfectly normal.
posted by Knappster at 10:12 AM on March 1, 2009


I always assumed all women were sexy hipsters that look despondently at you with a look that says "why did I leave Amherst again? I came to New York for this?" but neither her nor you want to say you're unhappy and she takes your guitar and strums some Counting Crow's song at the edge of your mattress bed. It doesn't matter she's 19 and you have nothing in common because she's going to visit her dad "in Europe" so you can coast by until then and not have to face anything resembling a breakup.
posted by geoff. at 10:15 AM on March 1, 2009 [7 favorites]


Is there a way for this to be about the FPP in particular, and not about how people like different body types and genders? Because I'm pretty sure everyone knows that by now.

OK, fair enough. I think projects like these have value by helping normal people become more comfortable with their own bodies.
posted by SteveTheRed at 10:16 AM on March 1, 2009


A more artistic take on this theme is Exactitudes, where a photographer and a stylist have collaborated to visually contrast how different people look when they are of similar type.

Gallery.
posted by dgaicun at 10:20 AM on March 1, 2009 [6 favorites]


they just do that while your standing naked in front of me in the bathroom while your brushing your teeth.

I've been wondering why I feel like someone is watching me in the morning.
posted by ryoshu at 10:28 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


But I still assume, on a completely unexamined and irrational level, that most men expect most women to look like actresses and models.

I've known those men, and they are quite lonely.
posted by troybob at 10:28 AM on March 1, 2009


To quote myself quoting someone else in another thread:
"The fascination of mankind with sexual organs is as unwavering as it is inexplicable, and no other body part is subject to anywhere near the same level of scrutiny. An elbow, for instance, might be of flawless beauty - yet it will never cause as much uproar as a penis or a vagina, notwithstanding the fact that the latter look, objectively speaking, like radioactive vegetables from outer space."
-- Walter Moers^
posted by PontifexPrimus at 10:30 AM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


"try rubbing an ice cube against your scrotum and see what happens. Now, quickly try a lighted match."

No.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:30 AM on March 1, 2009 [11 favorites]


Hold DRY ice against your scrotum. Now pull it away, tearing scrotal skin off and causing blood to spurt copiously. Now, take a flamethrower and point it at.... wait, what are we doing here again?
posted by jamstigator at 10:36 AM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


Man, dicks are just straight up ugly.

Straight boys constantly have to remind themselves of how GROSS men and their anatomies are, we know, but why do they have to do in public all the time?

I'm gay but not so insecure with my sexuality as to not be able to allow that some breasts are nice looking, like a nice ripe tomato is nice looking. Vulvae are no more offensive than toes or noses. And sure some cocks are more blessed than others, but to dismiss ALL of them says more about your own homophobia than it does about my (or any man's) equipment.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 10:38 AM on March 1, 2009 [21 favorites]


Sadly the gallery of vulvas isn't as helpful as it could be. I know they have to show close-legged pictures in order to stay within a certain bound, but seeing the whole lot would be better. For example, I think many women who have a slighter larger than average clitoris have worried at some point that they are 'odd' or even somehow intersexed. Likewise, you don't get to see just how baroque and extravagant some women's inner labia are otherwise. If we're going to compareand to educate, let's do it properly, as boys and girls need to know these things.

Also, why no pictures of women's vulvas pre and post pregnancy? Definitely useful.
posted by Sova at 10:38 AM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


I'm pretty sure that shock absorber link is a flat out fraud, porpoise. I've never been able to get that much motion on a pair of A cups, even when I've tried to manipulate them manually, so I'm pretty damn sure they don't move that much when someone is running.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:41 AM on March 1, 2009


It's interesting that in the Human Variation Project, which is self selected - people decide to send in their own naked pictures - the majority of the women seem to be quite young and the majority of the men are much older.
posted by mygothlaundry at 10:44 AM on March 1, 2009


And sure some cocks are more blessed than others, but to dismiss ALL of them says more about your own homophobia than it does about my (or any man's) equipment.

I don't even fear the highest quality chorizo, but without hesitation, I'll call all sausage ugly.
posted by gman at 10:49 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Damn I was trying to go a day without Whacking It to Internet Tits and Vulvae. Fail.
posted by norabarnacl3 at 10:53 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Did anyone else think that galleries A through F somehow referred to cup size?
posted by fixedgear at 11:01 AM on March 1, 2009


A more artistic take on this theme is Exactitudes, where a photographer and a stylist have collaborated to visually contrast how different people look when they are of similar type.

The captions there are in English but don't readily translate to US slang (excepting "Emos" and "teenagers", obviously). Some of them are really funny: "Casual Queers"? "Pocketmonsters"?
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 11:05 AM on March 1, 2009


Not to be a spoilsport, but how about some pictures of animal genitals for those of us whose preference is a bit offbeat? I see tits all the time on my concealed camcorder in a womens room.
posted by Postroad at 11:09 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Am I the only one who thinks that genitals look weird when you can't see the people they're attached to? By themselves they look kinda grotesque. But as part of the human body, they're beautiful and even desirable.
posted by Jake Apathy at 11:17 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


to dismiss ALL of them says more about your own homophobia than it does about my (or any man's) equipment.

That's a really shitty thing to call someone, guy. Especially over a facetious comment about a gallery of AngloDicks. There's no call for that shit.
posted by DecemberBoy at 11:17 AM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


And sure some cocks are more blessed than others, but to dismiss ALL of them says more about your own homophobia than it does about my (or any man's) equipment.

Puh-leeze. Penises are about as pretty as toads.

Maybe you're one of those rare and special people who can look at a toad and think "Wow, that's such an attractive toad!" but don't for a moment think you're somehow more correct than those of us who look at a toad and say "Wow, that's one fugly animal."
posted by five fresh fish at 11:26 AM on March 1, 2009 [14 favorites]


So which mefites are submitting pics of themselves to the Normal Breast Gallery as a result of this thread?

Just me then.

And if they don't get uploaded, I'll know they're not normal.
posted by the latin mouse at 11:27 AM on March 1, 2009


Ok, I'm a lady and I've had sex with other ladies, and honestly, I can't tell which direction the vulvae are pointing in some of those pictures. It doesn't seem to be consistent. If we're going to do the closed-legged shots, can we have a "THIS SIDE UP" sign?

I mean, with an actual vulva, I don't need a road map, but honestly - needs a compass or something.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 11:32 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


you don't get to see just how baroque and extravagant some women's inner labia are otherwise

The things a man misses for being gay! Are there any vulva that move beyond the Baraoque and into the Rococo?
posted by kanewai at 11:35 AM on March 1, 2009 [13 favorites]


The dick images on the Channel 4 site are courtesy of Snap your Chap, which features a trailer of a documentary called My Penis and I.
posted by dammitjim at 11:35 AM on March 1, 2009


There is also the Height/Weight photo project, which uses fully clothed photos. I'd really like to see all of those slots filled, so if you're a Mefite with a height/weight combo that hasn't been submitted there yet, you should send in a pic.

I sent mine in over a year ago when I was ten pounds heavier and it hasn't showed up yet. I think this is sort of an abandonware site of Rob's at this point. Too bad.

I find guys' bodies more fascinating to me than womens' just because I've seen fewer of them over my lifetime so they seem more novel somehow.
posted by jessamyn at 11:36 AM on March 1, 2009


WTF is up with straight guys talking about how ugly dicks are? Do you really hate yourselves that much?

Hearing straight guys talk about how ugly dicks are is like hearing vegetarians talk about how porkchops taste like shit.
posted by Afroblanco at 11:38 AM on March 1, 2009 [17 favorites]


On behalf of all the men in the audience, I'd like to apologize to all of the women in the audience that have ever seen any of us naked.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 11:40 AM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


It's all made of the same kinds of tissue, it's just organized differently. Looking at so many examples side by side really drives that fact home.
posted by hermitosis at 11:45 AM on March 1, 2009


the_latin_mouse: "52So which mefites are submitting pics of themselves to the Normal Breast Gallery as a result of this thread?

Just me then.

And if they don't get uploaded, I'll know they're not normal.
"

No, I had the same thought, if only because I'm pretty much the same after having kids as I was before.
posted by misha at 11:48 AM on March 1, 2009


Hearing straight guys talk about how ugly dicks are is like hearing vegetarians talk about how porkchops taste like shit.

Wait, vegetarians are born with a porkchop between their legs? I'm confused.
posted by nebulawindphone at 11:55 AM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


WTF is up with straight guys talking about how ugly dicks are? Do you really hate yourselves that much?

I don't understand this logic. There are pretty parts of the body (the ear). There are ugly parts (the ear canal). Testicles are hilarious. Flaccid penises tend to be rather unsymmetrical and wrinkly. More like a pug, less like a swan. What's the big deal?
posted by Bookhouse at 12:01 PM on March 1, 2009


Enough about the exterior. How about the interior?

Whose bright idea was it to run the ductus deferens - a tube about as thin as a few hairs, which carries sperm out of the body - in front of the pubic bone?

Good idea there! Hey, while we're at it, how about if we build a car where you sit on the seat belts, but can't wrap them around your body?

Intelligent design, ha! If I'd been foreman on the factory floor the day this prototype was wheeled out, I'd have organized a general strike.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:06 PM on March 1, 2009 [10 favorites]


...let's not create an aesthetic Lake Wobegon Effect here.

More like Lake Michigan, amirite?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 12:10 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


you don't get to see just how baroque and extravagant some women's inner labia are otherwise

"baroque" is my new favorite adjective to describe ladybits. kudos sova.
posted by werkzeuger at 12:12 PM on March 1, 2009


So which mefites are submitting pics of themselves to the Normal Breast Gallery as a result of this thread?

Weeell . . . probably better just to out myself. I'm already on the human variation project page.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 12:13 PM on March 1, 2009


Re penises, beauty isn't everything. They are attractive because they're attached to someone you like (presumably), because they are uniquely useful for pleasant things you like to do, and because they visibly and unmistakeably tell you "hey! this guy thinks you're really really hot and wants you bad, right this second!"

It's more a matter of association than aesthetics. Kind of like food; most home-cooked food is not really "aesthetic," objectively speaking, but it certainly is attractive when you're hungry, and you remember a good meal with great fondness. Or at least I do.
posted by emjaybee at 12:18 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


"baroque" is my new favorite adjective to describe ladybits. kudos sova.

Although with some older women, you'd be better off with "Restoration".
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:21 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


I think I have never met a woman who could not name five things she disliked about her body more readily than one thing she liked. I have never understood that.

And I am secure enough in my sexuality to say that I don't find penises inherently ugly, but there is a wide range of appearances, some less aesthetically interesting than others. And the erection has a certain purposefulness about it that gives it some character. But I can find no beauty in the scrotum. I would make a lousy gay man.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 12:24 PM on March 1, 2009


Or maybe it's a selection bias and it's just British dicks that are ugly, I don't know.

i do. yes. british dicks are totally fugly. i think they're designed to match the teeth.

The project is based on the simple premise that every body is beautiful by virtue of being human

like fran lebowicz sez: all god's children aren't beautiful. in fact, most of us are barely presentable.

how about some pictures of animal genitals for those of us whose preference is a bit offbeat?

omg, that made me imagine 'what if channel 4 threw in a few ringers, or what if it was all just close-up pix of rat penises or something'..."these are normal human genitals...if urs looks different please consult a physician." haha
posted by sexyrobot at 12:25 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Or maybe it's a selection bias and it's just British dicks that are ugly, I don't know.

i do. yes. british dicks are totally fugly. i think they're designed to match the teeth.


.

In memoriam Comediarum, (427 BC - 2009 AD).
posted by Sova at 12:43 PM on March 1, 2009 [5 favorites]


I'm amazed at all the 'breast' women with beautiful bodies who nevertheless are so highly self-critical. I can't believe the instinctual parts of the male brain have a very sophisticated asthetic. It is nothing like "I think the left one's a little bigger. Hmm.. maybe if the areola wasn't so big and the the shape wasn't quite the same." It is pretty much "Breasts==good!"

Two quotes:
And tons of these women who felt that their breasts weren't "pretty" enough have beautiful breasts that tons of other women would love to have! I also realized that men are not half as critical of women's bodies as the women are themselves.

I think its safe to say that most men don't much care (it would be against their nature), but when I'm down, my breasts are always a fine target for blaming my troubles on.

And there's always the Jay Leno joke:
According to a new survey, women say they feel more comfortable undressing in front of men than they do undressing in front of other women. They say that women are too judgmental, where, of course, men are just grateful.
posted by eye of newt at 12:44 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Now all I can is think of art history and architecture periods and giggle. Thanks, MetaFilter!

(Greek Revival)

(Neocolonial)

(Cubist?)
posted by rusty at 12:48 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I think I have never met a woman who could not name five things she disliked about her body more readily than one thing she liked. I have never understood that.

So you've never heard of the double standard, or, you know, sexism?

Here's one idea; go count the number of articles for improving/thinning your body/dressing to disguise your body's hideous wrongness in the average woman's magazine (starting with Seventeen, then up to the ones for the mature ladies), vs. anything similar in the average man's.

Or count how many images, in one day, you can find of a woman's perfectly toned, young, white, utterly flawless body on TV, internet ads, newspapers, magazines, and outdoor advertising. That will take you a while also.
posted by emjaybee at 12:55 PM on March 1, 2009 [5 favorites]


Also, see how many male senior citizen celebrities are described as "rugged" or "distinguished", as opposed to women half their age mocked for veiny hands.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:58 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I know they have to show close-legged pictures in order to stay within a certain bound,

Really? How is that bound defined? There used to be agreed upon lines: don't show anything below the navel (70's jeans), no butt cracks, we all know that the line on a breast is around the aureole. I can see labia being a clear line, but is there really some consensus that under the right circumstances, the inner/outer labia border constitutes such a line? Weird.
posted by stonepharisee at 1:03 PM on March 1, 2009


I think I have never met a woman who could not name five things she disliked about her body more readily than one thing she liked.

I once worked with a woman who was extremely easy on the eyes. Like, hot enough to stop traffic.

That hawt. No lie.

One day, I overheard her confessing to a coworker that she felt inadequate about her body.

You know why she felt bad about her body?

Her legs were "too short."
posted by jason's_planet at 1:16 PM on March 1, 2009


I have seen a lot more than average naked people in my life, of both genders. the human body is both hideous and beautiful in multiform ways.

I have seen ugly penii, for sure. but I have also seen some very very pretty ones. there is no skin on a man's body softer than the penis, it's downright silky.

I think these projects are awesome. so many people are never really exposed to other adults naked, in a non-sexual environment, normal, variable adults. It's wonderful to see the variety and also to read the fascinating assessments that people have of themselves.

or...yeah, nudity!!!
posted by supermedusa at 1:31 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Also, see how many male senior citizen celebrities are described as "rugged" or "distinguished", as opposed to women half their age mocked for veiny hands.

Young, underdeveloped or inexperienced men suffer a similar selection bias. Entire movies Movie after movie after movie after movie have has been made about the subject, all of them some cheeky variation on the plotline 'so and so finally gets laid. FINALLY. Now they don't have to suffer the humiliation of virginity, youngness and inexperience!'.

I will also add I've never personally seen a woman mocked for veiny hands, but that's just my experience. Interestingly, from some of the above movies (lame... but nontheless cultural artifacts) we do get the term "MILF".

In other news, as for the posted links. I will say I've never met a boob I didn't like.
posted by 5imian at 1:31 PM on March 1, 2009


But I can find no beauty in the scrotum. I would make a lousy gay man.

Not true. Balls are fucking weird. And I say this as someone who is so gay I can't even bring myself to click on the ladybits pages because I'm so bothered by female anatomy. (No offense ladies! Love you! Just never really want to see what's going on under the hood!)
posted by greekphilosophy at 1:41 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


I have seen ugly penii, for sure. but I have also seen some very very pretty ones. there is no skin on a man's body softer than the penis, it's downright silky.

I agree with this assessment, and would extend it to the testicles. Male anatomy feels nice, in a tactile (not even solely sexual) way. I'd also like to posit that any genitalia looks gross if it's not lit in a flattering way, but, hell, so do most people's faces.

As for women and veiny hands, I know many women who are self-conscious about this. Moisturizer commercials (and, ironically, dish soap commercials) seem to exist largely to play in to this insecurity.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 1:54 PM on March 1, 2009


*ahem* MILF. Mom-I'd-Like-to-Fuck. as opposed to METHBEIBESONCOL. Mother-Exemplary-of-True-Human-Beauty-Expressed-In-a-Body-Exhibiting-Signs-Of-the-Normal-Course-Of-Life. MILF is not an expression of admiration for anything, it is just another misogynistic attack on female sexuality, this time via the tired ploy of the conflation of the sexually aggressive and the infantile/freudian whatnot.

(though i must admit that METHBEIBESONCOL has none of the kind of snap to give it any kind of significant cultural capital.)
posted by barrett caulk at 1:57 PM on March 1, 2009


WTF is up with straight guys talking about how ugly dicks are? Do you really hate yourselves that much?

I am not my penis. I'm allowed to find that or any other part of my body unpleasantly constructed -- either just mine, or all such parts as a group -- without being filled with self-loathing. If you as a guy feel that your self-image lives and dies by your penis, I'm sorry to hear that.

having said that, I think mine is quite lovely
posted by davejay at 1:57 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


*ahem* MILF. Mom-I'd-Like-to-Fuck. as opposed to METHBEIBESONCOL....

I was pointing out that older women, in those movies are being identified as sexual, selectable entities, much like all the young, impossibly attractive movie star females running around in the same picture. Really, all that freudian stuff? its just "older women are hawt too, despite what you might think". I am not defending the "superficial cultural artifacts" I mentioned anymore than one would defend a say, dove commercial.
..I am merely saying that they seem to present the selection bias a young, inexperienced male goes through as equatable to the same selection bias an older more experienced woman goes through.

Its crass as hell, sure.
And superficial.
But not misogynistic.

Also, METHBEIBESONCOL.... sounds like a brand of cough syrup. Therefore ...I would never call a woman that.
posted by 5imian at 2:09 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm not clicking anything. How ya gonna keep me down on the farm after I've seen Paree?
posted by pracowity at 2:19 PM on March 1, 2009 [9 favorites]


Also, METHBEIBESONCOL.... sounds like a brand of cough syrup. Therefore ...I would never call a woman that.

Aside from the fact that - when pronounced - it would sound like "meth babes on call".
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:21 PM on March 1, 2009 [8 favorites]


You know what's even uglier than a penis? Prejudice!
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:30 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


I think I have never met a woman who could not name five things she disliked about her body more readily than one thing she liked.

I was flicking through a magazine recently that was reporting on what they claimed was the biggest ever survey of womens' body image attitudes - some 50,000 or so survey respondents.

One striking result was that only 7% reported that they were "satisfied or very satisfied" with their bodies.

I'd guess that this would roughly break down into something like 4% who (through genetic fluke or lots of hard exercise) approximate the stereotypical media ideal, plus maybe 3% who don't match the ideal, but are happy & comfortable with themselves anyway.

Maybe it's 2% v 5% or some other mix, but whatever the proportions, it's a pretty depressing state of affairs.

Turn to a mens' magazine, and apparently it's all a-ok as long as you buy yourself a $5,000 wristwatch.
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:35 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


"try rubbing an ice cube against your scrotum and see what happens. Now, quickly try a lighted match."

No.

posted by krinklyfig at 1:30 PM on March 1


Eponysterical.
posted by kimdog at 2:35 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


heehee
posted by supermedusa at 2:41 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


heehee

peepee
posted by DecemberBoy at 2:46 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


...let's not create an aesthetic Lake Wobegon Effect here.

More like Lake Michigan, amirite?


More like Lake Erie, amirite?

*ahem*

I'm ok with finding the beauty in people as opposed to being forced fed that everything except models are ugly.

Jon, I doubt you meant the opposite of what I just wrote,


I don't, Brandon. I'm more peeved at the whole pollyanna Free-To-Be-You-And-Me platitudinous 'Everybody's beautiful in their own way,' bullshit. That kind of crap caused a backlash that put Reagan in the fucking White House ultimately. or something. I digress. But that stuff is what we tell ourselves to console ourselves when we come up short in some area. Would any of you former Nation Merit Scholars argue that everybody's a genius in their own way? Huh?

I've linked to this pic before in conversations on this topic. The handsome bastard on the left is my buddy Rob, I'm the blur next to him. He's a great guy and I wouldn't trade my friendship with him for anything, but I'm kind of glad he moved to Hawaii, since I spent about a decade playing Potsie to his Fonzie. Along with being good-looking, he was also a fireman, an EMT, in a band and independently wealthy. When he walked into a room all eyes were on him, I've seen him reduce everybody from octogenarian women to toddler-aged children to goggle-eyed stupor, including people who often spout the whole looks-don't-matter-it's-what's-inside-that-counts idealistic types. Now in terms of long term relationships, that'd be true, but in terms of gut reactions, you cannot tell me that there isn't a difference in the way me and my friend get reacted to and that it isn't based on his looks, which despite all the platitudes, conform to a fairly classical definition of handsomeness.

What it all boils down to: attributes of all kinds are NOT handed out equally at birth and that's well..tough shit, ultimately.
posted by jonmc at 2:47 PM on March 1, 2009 [14 favorites]


Turn to a mens' magazine, and apparently it's all a-ok as long as you buy yourself a $5,000 wristwatch.

MIX, NOT MATCH, TEXTURES AND PATTERNS
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:49 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Enough about the exterior. How about the interior?

I heard a great quip (that holds true for both males and females) that the human body must have been designed by a civil engineer because no one else would have run a sewage system through an entertainment area.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 2:53 PM on March 1, 2009 [22 favorites]


Those sex ed films are just awesome. I had no idea. Is this a new thing in the UK, this sensible Scandinavian style sex ed?
posted by fingerbang at 2:53 PM on March 1, 2009


fingerbang?
posted by gman at 3:02 PM on March 1, 2009


I think I have never met a woman who could not name five things she disliked about her body more readily than one thing she liked.

I can think of exactly two things I dislike about my body, and I don't think they're going to be on any standard "women's body complaints" list: I have funny looking knees and despite having braces, my teeth are so weird, they're practically British.

Everything else: I'm fine with it. I can even think of parts of my body that I think are actively attractive. I have really pretty eyes and I'm very muscular from eons of swimming and yoga. It certainly helps that I have a partner who can't see me naked without there being... repercussions. Does wonders for anyone's self-esteem. It's not that I think that I specifically am more beautiful than others, but that humans in general are pretty awesome and I, as a human, share in that awesomeness.

Then again, I am not in any percentage of the population of women who reads "women's magazines." They hurt my soul. It's billions of dollars in advertising trying to convince women to hate their bodies and worry about what men are thinking. And it works. And my soul. It hurts. I like fashion and think it's fun, but I absolutely can not read a fashion magazine without wanting to destroy things for the soul-less materialism it promotes. If someone would write a "women's magazine" along the lines of "Wear cute stuff, eat nice food, play with your hair, and hang out and be groovy" I'd be down with that - but what actually gets published is subliminally demonizing with the message that if you BUY MORE CRAP you'll feel way better about your particular human condition.

Personally, I *do* feel better about my human condition when my hair smells pretty, but I also know that it doesn't make me a fundamentally *better* person.

Oh hi, I'm blathering again. I'll just go back to my corner and foam at the mouth now.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:03 PM on March 1, 2009 [5 favorites]


looks-don't-matter-it's-what's-inside-that-counts

That's a nice pat summary of what I'm hearing from straight women in this thread regarding penises.
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:03 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Personally, I *do* feel better about my human condition when my hair smells pretty,

I get the same thing from bourbon and Budweiser. The human condition thing, I mean. It dosen't make me look better. It makes other people look better to me sometimes....
posted by jonmc at 3:11 PM on March 1, 2009


as opposed to women half their age mocked for veiny hands.

Hey, my English penis is *at least* as attractive as Madonna's veiny hands. In fact, the two things would bear a very close resemblance if you chopped her fingers off.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 3:11 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


you cannot tell me that there isn't a difference in the way me and my friend get reacted to and that it isn't based on his looks,

*Shrugs.*

I liked drawing the not pretty people in drawing classes. Much more interesting.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:11 PM on March 1, 2009


Flaccid penises tend to be rather unsymmetrical and wrinkly. More like a pug, less like a swan. What's the big deal?

Pugs are way, way cuter than swans. Wait, did I miss something here?
posted by The Bellman at 3:12 PM on March 1, 2009


While I'm yammering, I'm going to go on the record and say that as a human who is sexually attracted to other humans on a case-by-case basis (I guess you could call this "bisexual" if you want to be all propagating the gender binary): everyone's genitalia is equally weird to look at for a long period of time, but y'know what, so are ears.

Seriously. Stare at some ears for a while. They're freaky. And way less fun to play with than either a penis OR a vulva.

And really, stop staring at it and just *use* it. The fun factor more than makes up for the odd appearance.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:12 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


and in fact, both genders are saying "your aesthetic perfection means nothing to me, I care about what you do with it!!!!"


if we'd all stop listening to advertisement and listen to each other then we'd all suffer from....enlarged....organs.....hmmmmm.....
posted by supermedusa at 3:13 PM on March 1, 2009


I liked drawing the not pretty people in drawing classes. Much more interesting.

Drawing, sure? Ask any of them out?
posted by jonmc at 3:13 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Those sex ed films are just awesome. I had no idea. Is this a new thing in the UK, this sensible Scandinavian style sex ed?

Eh, it's television. We pay Channel 4 to make a certain amount of programming that is publically useful. This will be one of those. They all get screened at some point as normal programmes, and they're mildly entertaining as well as informative. I've watched a few, but not many cause I tend to avoid tv.

If you like those videos though, you'll probably love Channel 5's Girl's Guide to 21st Century Sex. Not only did it include real sex (well, 'real' as in they were actually doing it, not 'real' as in the camera had snuck into somebody's bedroom), but also had a 'vagina cam' so you could watch the penis moving in and out before eventually ejaculating on the camera. I watched that with my mum, sweet. And then we had a conversation about our vulvas, which was a little weirding.
posted by Sova at 3:17 PM on March 1, 2009


MetaFilter: you could watch the penis moving in and out before eventually ejaculating on the camera.
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:19 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm often attracted to a type of person who can be called ugly-hot or ugly-cute, but sometimes their personalities really annoy me and I'm left to suffer with the overtly hot or cute.
posted by birdie birdington at 3:20 PM on March 1, 2009


This seems on topic: Embarrassing Teenage Bodies advocates cosmetic labiaplasty.
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 3:23 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm more peeved at the whole pollyanna Free-To-Be-You-And-Me platitudinous 'Everybody's beautiful in their own way,' bullshit. That kind of crap caused a backlash that put Reagan in the fucking White House ultimately. or something. I digress. But that stuff is what we tell ourselves to console ourselves when we come up short in some area. Would any of you former Nation Merit Scholars argue that everybody's a genius in their own way? Huh?

Are you serious? Physical attractiveness is a matter of taste. Intelligence is not, primarily. Saying that two plus two equals five is not a difference of opinion; it's just wrong. Saying that blue eyes are prettier than brown eyes has no empirical gauge.

I agree that if the whole world was shallow enough to stop at first impressions and believed in GQ/Vogue's standard of beauty alone, we might be in trouble. Fortunately, it's not a cookie-cutter world.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 3:33 PM on March 1, 2009


Since my perspective seems underrepresented on this thread, OMG I LOVE MALE GENITALS.
posted by tits mcgee at 3:35 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


Are you serious? Physical attractiveness is a matter of taste. Intelligence is not, primarily. Saying that two plus two equals five is not a difference of opinion; it's just wrong. Saying that blue eyes are prettier than brown eyes has no empirical gauge.

Uh-huh. Dude, we tell ourselves that there are all kinds of pretty to console ourselves when our prettier friends get laid more than we do. Some people get hostile at the idea that there are all kinds of smart because it threatens their sense of specialness, just like the idea that there's all kinds of prettiness. The mediocre thankfully can remain detached from the whole issue.
posted by jonmc at 3:36 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


OMG I LOVE MALE GENITALS.

Well, they're a great place to hang your hat, no doubt.
posted by jonmc at 3:37 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Dude, we tell ourselves that there are all kinds of pretty to console ourselves when our prettier friends get laid more than we do.

Or when we see that all kinds of people are getting laid. Tastes actually do vary, amazingly enough.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 3:42 PM on March 1, 2009


I'm more peeved at the whole pollyanna Free-To-Be-You-And-Me platitudinous 'Everybody's beautiful in their own way,' bullshit. That kind of crap caused a backlash that put Reagan in the fucking White House ultimately. or something. I digress. But that stuff is what we tell ourselves to console ourselves when we come up short in some area.

This is how I see it: I have sex. I've had sex with more than one person. Therefore, there exists more than one person on earth who is (or has been) sexually attracted to me. I'm doing alright.

When I look around at other adult humans, I kinda figure that they are also in this boat. That they have been in sexual relationships with other humans. To every single person, there is someone who finds them sexually attractive. YOU may not find everyone to be beautiful, but there's always going to be someone who does.

So, yes, we really are all beautiful in our own way, but we don't have to come to a total consensus on every citizen finding the whole human race to be bone-able.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:43 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


YOU may not find everyone to be beautiful, but there's always going to be someone who does.

so for every pig, there's a pig fucker?
posted by 5imian at 3:46 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


Tasters actually do vary, amazingly enough.
posted by Sova at 3:51 PM on March 1, 2009


so for every pig, there's a pig fucker?

Well, yeah, if you want to put it THAT way.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:54 PM on March 1, 2009


so for every pig, there's a pig fucker?

Searching on Craigslist definitely bears this out.
posted by hermitosis at 3:54 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


So you've never heard of the double standard, or, you know, sexism?

I have heard of this. I have also received e-mail from the Treasury Minister of Ghana soliciting my assistance which will be greatly compensated. In neither case do I understand why people fall for it.

You know why she felt bad about her body?

Her legs were "too short."


Were they long enough to reach the ground?
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:54 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Searching on Craigslist definitely bears this out.

Where else but on Craigslist could Tornado Man find true love?
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 4:01 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


Drawing, sure? Ask any of them out?

No and that's the point. Just because I could appreciate some aesthetics about their body doesn't mean I want to fuck them. Almost all of them had SO's though, at one point or another.

so for every pig, there's a pig fucker?

Pretty much.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:01 PM on March 1, 2009


I've had sex with more than one person.

in a row?

hahahaha
posted by jonmc at 4:03 PM on March 1, 2009


By the way, the Tornado Man link is slightly NSFW.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 4:03 PM on March 1, 2009


Just because I could appreciate some aesthetics about their body doesn't mean I want to fuck them.

Well, that's aesthetic 'beauty' versus sexual attraction which is a whole other debate.
posted by jonmc at 4:04 PM on March 1, 2009


I liked drawing the not pretty people in drawing classes. Much more interesting.

Drawing, sure? Ask any of them out?


Why's it have to be about fucking? There are different ways to gauge even beauty--one way is in terms of a body having an interesting artistic composition, which might have nothing to do with societal constructs of fuckability.

I think galleries like these exist to counter the notion that all genitals/bodies should fit into porn star proportions or be perfectly symmetrical in order to be functional or even normal. The idea is that bodies--and therefore people--have a value besides the sexual and might--godforbid--have sexual value even if not perfect. Maybe the link between looking plastic-surgeried perfect and having value as a human being is difficult for people (men) who were never thirteen year old girls reading Seventeen to understand, but I'd like to think it's pretty obvious--this is a world where "body positive" advertising like Dove's campaign for real beauty is all about telling women that, yes, their product can get rid the cellulite on even your fat ass.

I think men feel this stuff too, of course--about their dicks, but about other parts of their bodies, too (ask any man with breasts)--just not with the venom or the frequency that women do. So I think it's incredibly valuable for real bodies to be out there. In drawing classes, sure (artists need to learn how to draw a variety of bodies), but even better in places where teenagers can see people who look like them and not feel fucking abysmal about themselves.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:08 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


But see, the thing is, pigs do literally screw.
posted by dogrose at 4:10 PM on March 1, 2009


The idea is that bodies--and therefore people--have a value besides the sexual

in terms of the species, not really. all our other time-killing aside, we're basically eating sleeping, shitting and fucking here.
posted by jonmc at 4:11 PM on March 1, 2009


ArmyofKittens, thanks for that link. One of the "consultation" videos, about enlarged labia, bugged me for the same reason. Somehow I expected the MD (Dr McKenna, same one referenced in the letter you link) to observe that the woman's labia were perfectly normal and not unsightly, but instead she kept referring to the tissue as "excess".

Quite a contrast to how I've thought about enlarged labia, ever since reading a certain Spider Robinson short story when I was a teen. Can't remember which one though. Anyway, his narrator says admiringly of a female hookup partner, "If she were a man, she'd be hung like a horse!"
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 4:11 PM on March 1, 2009


Sex at age 90 is like trying to shoot pool with a rope. - Camille Paglia
posted by netbros at 4:17 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


That pig-screwing comment? It made much more sense at 6:54 pm.

On preview: jonmc, this is why people get annoyed with your mopey nihilism. Yes, we are animals and it's idiotic to pretend otherwise. It's equally idiotic to pretend that our big ol' brains, the things that kill women in childbirth and created this and all other splendid and fucked-up societies, make absolutely no difference. Which is what you're saying.
posted by dogrose at 4:23 PM on March 1, 2009


Oh hey, following links from that letter, here's a good site with vulva galleries: The-Clitoris.com

Tons of information about female sexuality and body image there.
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 4:26 PM on March 1, 2009


this is why people get annoyed with your mopey nihilism.

mopey? I'm laughing my ass off. It's the fact that none of this makes any difference that makes life so much fun.
posted by jonmc at 4:26 PM on March 1, 2009


Why's it have to be about fucking? There are different ways to gauge even beauty--one way is in terms of a body having an interesting artistic composition, which might have nothing to do with societal constructs of fuckability.

A great point, when you are discussing sculptures.. but these are warm blooded humans making aesthetic decisions about themselves in order to be, pardon me, fuckable.

Imagine this add in a men's magazine:

"Wear our cologne, so that you will acquire more aesthetic appreciation, but never get sex again!"
posted by 5imian at 4:27 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


To quote a comment left under the vulvae (if you happened to miss it):

"Oh my god. I'M NORMAL! :)
For the past 2 years, I've 'jokingly' have the nickname of 'bucket', which have effected my ability to be confident about my vagina and it has generally made me alot more quiet. Compared to some of the photos above, I look pretty normal. If only the guys in my year could see these and understand.
But these photos have really helped :)
(NO-LONGER CONCERNED 15 YEAR OLD) x"
posted by 534154414E at 4:27 PM on March 1, 2009


big ol' brains, the things that kill women in childbirth

Brains do that?
posted by 5imian at 4:28 PM on March 1, 2009


in terms of the species, not really. all our other time-killing aside, we're basically eating sleeping, shitting and fucking here.

Riiight . . . so I guess you wouldn't understand the value of art anyway, then?

I think the point is largely that our standards of attractiveness as seen in the media are unrealistically high and rarely even touch on average. This is problematic because it leads to all sorts of shame and embarrassment in teenagers, not to mention stuff like eating disorders. The truth is that the majority of people, no matter how "ugly" by society's standards, will get laid at some point in their lives. If we're going to judge someone's value as a person based on whether or not they can attract a mate (still, not convinced that this is a good metric of a life's worth), then the vast majority of us are valuable.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:32 PM on March 1, 2009


For the past 2 years, I've 'jokingly' have the nickname of 'bucket', which have effected my ability to be confident about my vagina

Ummm, if enough people are seeing your vagina (at 15, yet) that they've decided to give you a nickname based on it, I'd say that you have bigger issues, sweetheart.
posted by jonmc at 4:32 PM on March 1, 2009


A great point, when you are discussing sculptures.. but these are warm blooded humans making aesthetic decisions about themselves in order to be, pardon me, fuckable.

Who's doing what now?
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:33 PM on March 1, 2009


Riiight . . . so I guess you wouldn't understand the value of art anyway, then?

You mean the pictures of naked ladies? The loud songs about fucking that are sensually pleasant to listen to?
posted by jonmc at 4:34 PM on March 1, 2009


big ol' brains, the things that kill women in childbirth

Brains do that?


They do when they're enclosed in their packaging, being shoved through very narrow spaces. Talk to anyone who's given birth.
posted by dogrose at 4:35 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


The Naturist Society is a good resource on body acceptance.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 4:38 PM on March 1, 2009


You mean the pictures of naked ladies? The loud songs about fucking that are sensually pleasant to listen to?

Arguing that art is solely about sex, even representationally, seems seriously shortsighted.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:42 PM on March 1, 2009


For the past 2 years, I've 'jokingly' have the nickname of 'bucket', which have effected my ability to be confident about my vagina

Ummm, if enough people are seeing your vagina (at 15, yet) that they've decided to give you a nickname based on it, I'd say that you have bigger issues, sweetheart.
posted by jonmc at 7:32 PM on March 1


I took this to mean that a boyfriend had given her the nickname.

I would point out that there's nothing wrong with a lot of people seeing one's vagina, though perhaps not at 15.
posted by joannemerriam at 4:42 PM on March 1, 2009


MeFi dudes; so are you a "grower" or a "shower"?

JUST KIDDING! Please don't answer.
posted by snsranch at 4:43 PM on March 1, 2009


So for every pig, there's a pig fucker?

Human tastes and sexuality vary so hugely that no matter how ugly, smelly or annoying somebody is, there will still be somebody out there who is attracted to them.
posted by the latin mouse at 4:49 PM on March 1, 2009


mopey? I'm laughing my ass off. It's the fact that none of this makes any difference that makes life so much fun.

Then you might want to work on your MeTa persona. It comes across as both mopey and angry.

Back on topic: The whole point of these sites is to assuage people's fears that they're not "normal." The range of normal is much more expansive than we think.

Beauty is another issue. First, define beauty.
posted by dogrose at 4:49 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Beauty is open to perception, much like how one perceives jonmc.
posted by gman at 4:51 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Beauty is another issue. First, define beauty.

Beauty is truth, truth, beauty, SIR!
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 4:52 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


Beauty is open to perception, much like how one perceives jonmc.

Which is my point, gman. Beauty is entirely a product of our own personal big-brain quirks, which includes a major dose of socialization.

Normal, on the other hand, is not. Normal is what it is.
posted by dogrose at 4:56 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Beauty is open to perception,

Again, I think that's something we say to make ourselves feel better, as I addressed in this comment. We can get upset about it all we want, It kind of falls under the same category as "I wish I could fly."
posted by jonmc at 4:59 PM on March 1, 2009


armyofkittens, that's horrifying. WTF, Channel 4?
posted by five fresh fish at 5:01 PM on March 1, 2009


Dude, there are plenty of stereotypically beautiful women I do not find beautiful. I often find them boring to look at. Some of the most beautiful women I know are not perfectly symmetrical, but rather, unique, in their look.
posted by gman at 5:06 PM on March 1, 2009


Again, I think that's something we say to make ourselves feel better, as I addressed in this comment. We can get upset about it all we want, It kind of falls under the same category as "I wish I could fly."

jonmc, I think you're just as valuable as your Ken-doll friend.

But dogrose is right; this isn't really about beauty, anyway.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 5:12 PM on March 1, 2009


jonmc, you're arguing that the vast majority of us are ugly, even to the people who love us.

Why are you so invested in this?

On preview: gman, look up the definition of "socialization." Look around you. Think again.
posted by dogrose at 5:14 PM on March 1, 2009


armyofkittens, that's horrifying. WTF, Channel 4?

In fairness, it was just that one programme, not the whole channel. I guess the editor of the programme simply didn't seek to question what the doctor was saying. The same channel also showed The Perfect Vagina, which acts as a decent riposte to cosmetic labiaplasty, and was actually decent in itself.
posted by Sova at 5:16 PM on March 1, 2009


A great point, when you are discussing sculptures.. but these are warm blooded humans making aesthetic decisions about themselves in order to be, pardon me, fuckable.
Who's doing what now?

What I am saying, is I agree with much of what you say, such as,
  • I think the point is largely that our standards of attractiveness as seen in the media are unrealistically high and rarely even touch on average.

  • Is really right on! I couldn't agree more! Not everyone looks like a movie star! However:
  • Why's it have to be about fucking?

  • Is a little naive. Why hide wrinkles? Why wear makeup?Do we prefer symmetry in the face? Why would a male wear shoes to appear bigger? Why buy a pill to increase penis size? Why buy a bra to make your breasts look bigger? Why does virtually every single ad about our looks appeal to our sense of sexuality? Even toothpaste? These 'big ol brains' of ours are still very motivated to do very primal things, in a lot of ways. I'm not saying that everyone needs or wants to look like a movie star, but most people make decisions every day to make themselves look "more sexy". Sometimes its looks.
  • Sometimes..other things. Wearing a 5000$ watch (when a 5$ one works literally just as well) projects "I make money. I can afford to raise your children. I have resources". Its sexy to a lot of women. Sometime to the point of overlooking other things.

  • Having clear blemish free skin says "I'm young. I'm fertile. I''m healthy".

  • There's been just mountains of social research on this topic. Why is most lipstick red, rather than say... blue. Why would a woman wear "blush"? What color is that blush? Why?
    I think you have a lot of good points, but tend to be more idealistic than realistic in an effort to not be (as one poster put it) 'nihilistic'.
    This post isn't comprehensive... but...yeah, it really,really is all about fucking on some level. And that's... ok.
    And the people selling things to you , as well as most, if not all, biologists, psychologists, and doctors get that.
    posted by 5imian at 5:20 PM on March 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


    I've had sex with more than one person.

    in a row?


    That's just being silly.

    Everybody knows you have the row first, and the makeup sex later.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 5:22 PM on March 1, 2009 [9 favorites]


    Arguing that art is solely about sex, even representationally, seems seriously shortsighted.

    I don't know about that Mondrian you posted..but the Pollock is absolutely, in a lot of ways...about sexual energy.

    "His paintings of the 1930s, such as Birth (1937), anticipate the turbulent impasto and sexual imagery of his later work."
    -John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995.

    posted by 5imian at 5:30 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    -Beauty is open to perception,

    -Again, I think that's something we say to make ourselves feel better


    That might be one motivation, but it also happens to be an observable fact of nature. Otherwise we would have to contend that there is but one standard of beauty, and we are all of varying distances from this standard. The human experience would clearly beg to differ. Beauty is not an objective standard, any more than "delicious" or "nice music" are. I mean really.
    posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 5:32 PM on March 1, 2009


    1. Despite the square jam and short hair, my buddy is not a Ken doll-type. He's got roughly 11 tattoos, is of mixed Anglo/Latino heritage and dresses in thrift-store clothes, and in those days would skip bathing for up to a week and dtill manage to be the black hole of female attention.

    2. Me and him spent most of our time hanging around the early 90's 'alternative' scene and (nothing personal), but from your profile pic, you look a lot like the alternachicks who tripped over themselves trying to get his attention, so you'll have to forgive my bottomless cynicism on this topic.

    3. as to our 'value,' the fact that you can say that we're equal without knowing either of us is what I mean when I say 'platitude.'


    The "Ken-doll" title was based on your earlier description of him. But are you seriously saying that my opinions not valid because I look like an alternachick? That's fucked up, and I'd thank you not to make assumptions about who I'm into doing, anyway (trust me; it's probably not the people you'd think). Anyway, by your metric, it sounds like people are valuable based on whether they're getting screwed. You're, like, married, right? And you and your wife schtup? Then by that metric of valuable, you're valuable, if not, at the very least normal.

    Anyway, you'd be more valuable to me because I've been able to procrastinate thesis work by having an argument on metafilter with you. Now that's valuable!

    5imian, I initially made that comment in reference to someone saying that they find typically unattractive bodies more interesting to draw in life-drawing classes. That's one metric of "beauty", of many, that has nothing to do with conformity to society's standards of beauty; it's a sign that there are other uses for people's bodies than fucking, among them, being subjects for works of art.

    I'm not saying that I find people to be equally sexually attractive (although, like gman, my standards are a bit different from the norm--I've been really into this mildly NSFW livejournal community for awhile, if that's any indication of just some of my tastes), but I'm saying that "normal" is highly variable and that, at the very least, what one individual deems to be attractive should never be the metric for a person's worth.
    posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 5:33 PM on March 1, 2009


    Beauty is not an objective standard, any more than "delicious" or "nice music" are. I mean really.

    We are not arguing Beauty, so much as "sexually attractive". It more like referring to music as "consonant" or food as "palatable".

    To extend the metaphor a little....I also say that if you listen to Morse code, while drinking motor oil on a regular basis.. you certainly don't represent the majority of society.
    posted by 5imian at 5:36 PM on March 1, 2009


    Can you natterers not distinguish between "normal" and "beautiful"? Or, to put it in your terms, "normal" and "fuckable"?

    The whole point of the photos and the FPP was to illustrate the vast range of human physiology, so as to reassure women (and there are more than a few) who fear that their tits 'n' bits are disastrously abnormal. Which they are, judging from the photographic evidence widely available on the intertubes and elsewhere.

    Unless you have something interesting to say about that topic, SHUT UP. NOW. Or take it to MetaTalk.
    posted by dogrose at 5:36 PM on March 1, 2009


    5imian, I initially made that comment in reference to someone saying that they find typically unattractive bodies more interesting to draw in life-drawing classes. That's one metric of "beauty", of many, that has nothing to do with conformity to society's standards of beauty; it's a sign that there are other uses for people's bodies than fucking, among them, being subjects for works of art.

    I see what you're saying. I certainly agree with that.
    posted by 5imian at 5:37 PM on March 1, 2009


    We are not arguing Beauty, so much as "sexually attractive".

    Either one of these are open to personal taste, with no objective standard.
    posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 5:38 PM on March 1, 2009


    Um Liza, was this comment an open letter to all scrotums or did you have a particular one in mind?
    posted by dr_dank at 5:41 PM on March 1, 2009


    SHUT UP. NOW. Or take it to MetaTalk.

    I'm glad you think that metafilter is the wild west and you're the sheriff. I personally think all the discussion, minus your tantrum i quoted, has been precisely on topic. I am personally finding jon, marisa and phoB's comments very interesting. Lots of links.. lots of perspective.
    posted by 5imian at 5:45 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    The whole point of the photos and the FPP was to illustrate the vast range of human physiology, so as to reassure women (and there are more than a few)

    There's penises too. Flacid and erect.
    posted by 5imian at 5:46 PM on March 1, 2009


    But are you seriously saying that my opinions not valid because I look like an alternachick?

    No, what I'm saying is that I've met plenty of people who said the usual looks-aren't-important stuff and who looked the part in terms of being 'open minded' and 'liberated' and 'hip' and all that shit but who turned into 12-year-olds at a Backstreet Boys show around my conventionally-handsome friend. So that's why I tend to regard a lot of this as platitudes and lip service.
    posted by jonmc at 5:51 PM on March 1, 2009


    You know, I just love penises, peni, or whatever you want to call 'em. It's probably not what most guys want to hear, but every time I see one I want to knit it a little hat, and I don't even knit. Maybe even a little turtleneck. They just look so defenseless and darling.
    posted by Evangeline at 5:53 PM on March 1, 2009 [5 favorites]


    Man. I had a meeting at 9:30, walked the dog at 11:00, showered, Little League practice from 1-3, then off to the grocery store, and home again just in time to make dinner for an hour, and consume it, thereby completely missing the great spectacle of this awesome thread. I really should get in more.
    posted by Devils Rancher at 6:00 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


    I once tried to knit a hat and failed miserably. It looked an awful lot like a penis-cozy.
    posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:28 PM on March 1, 2009


    >Riiight . . . so I guess you wouldn't understand the value of art anyway, then?

    You mean the pictures of naked ladies? The loud songs about fucking that are sensually pleasant to listen to?


    ....Dude, seriously. sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
    posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:48 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    I once tried to knit a hat and failed miserably. It looked an awful lot like a penis-cozy.

    I sense a marketing opportunity. Might make a good Valentine's gift.
    posted by eye of newt at 6:48 PM on March 1, 2009


    You know, there's a reason they call it bumping uglies.
    posted by mygothlaundry at 7:16 PM on March 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


    "Bumping Uglies" is probably one of my top favourite band names of all time. More recently "Bushfire Relief" has been another one (imagine the crowds you'd draw!) and a few years ago, "Tsunami Benefit".
    posted by turgid dahlia at 7:40 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


    And there I was thinking that "bumping uglies" was a euphemism for eugenics.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 7:43 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


    Sex at age 90 is like trying to shoot pool with a rope. - Camille Paglia

    That's only true if, at 90, Camille continues to use the same pool stick.
    posted by terranova at 7:56 PM on March 1, 2009


    so for every pig, there's a pig fucker?

    Oh, like you've never gone "hoggin''".
    posted by MikeMc at 8:02 PM on March 1, 2009


    And here I thouight 'bumping uglies' referred to a pack of blind lepers at a rave. I guess I need a new thesaurus!
    posted by jamstigator at 8:03 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


    someone once knit a hat for my penis. never tried it on, though. on the other hand, i apparently have way too much hair down there.
    posted by lester's sock puppet at 8:06 PM on March 1, 2009


    Ooh, eponysterical.
    posted by Pallas Athena at 8:08 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    Man, dicks are just straight up ugly.

    penii but especially testicles are just plain weird.

    without hesitation, I'll call all sausage ugly.

    Penises are about as pretty as toads.

    I'd like to apologize to all of the women in the audience that have ever seen any of us naked.


    Lot's of repudnance in this thread, but not all boners are gross.....no, some are just literally fucking terrifying.

    So there's that.
    posted by dgaicun at 8:17 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    Stop it with the "penii" already. Just use the English plural. Always. You can never be wrong.
    posted by scope the lobe at 8:23 PM on March 1, 2009


    You know Jon, for what it's worth? Your friend, who I'm sure is a lovely human being, does nothing at all for me looks wise. Conventionally handsome isn't a one-size fits all thing. It could be that your friend, in person, was confident, generous, easy to be with, and good at putting other people at ease, thereby having much social success not as connected with his looks as you might think.
    posted by jokeefe at 8:29 PM on March 1, 2009 [6 favorites]


    Just use the English plural. Always. You can never be wrong.

    John Thomases is is I guess. Or is it John Thomasi?
    posted by MikeMc at 8:33 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    Actually the plural is "peniises"
    posted by turgid dahlia at 8:40 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    Surely "bucket of cocks?"
    posted by maxwelton at 9:01 PM on March 1, 2009


    re: sova's comment @ 3:17. first link i could find (um . . . NSFW). forgive me if anybody linked this first, i haven't had time to follow this thread with the diligence it demands. watch it with a science/tech geek that you love or lust for.
    posted by barrett caulk at 9:31 PM on March 1, 2009


    Again, I think that's something we say to make ourselves feel better

    As someone who pops into nearly every thread about women to remind the community that you are totally sprung by plus-sized ladies, I think this is possibly a really strange position for you to staunchly take in this particular discussion.
    posted by hermitosis at 9:58 PM on March 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


    Wow. Barrett Caulk. They need to make that a ride at Disney World.
    posted by 5imian at 10:17 PM on March 1, 2009


    heh - on the subject of "OMG penises are ugly!" i just remembered being asked out once by a woman who then went on at some length about how horrible guys are from the waist down & how women are just lovely all over. needless to say, she never got a second date.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 10:18 PM on March 1, 2009


    I think these websites are teh awesome and health as hell.

    Then again, I am not in any percentage of the population of women who reads "women's magazines." They hurt my soul.

    Well said, grapefruitmoon, well said.
    posted by Mental Wimp at 10:22 PM on March 1, 2009


    dr. dank : when i first started writing it i was thinking of one guy in particular but thinking it over a bit i realized it's something i've observed in all the manstalks i've had the pleasure of pleasuring and pleasuring myself with throughout the years. so yeah ... it's a generalization :)
    posted by liza at 10:52 PM on March 1, 2009


    >John Thomases is is I guess. Or is it John Thomasi?

    The Johns Thomas, surely?
    posted by DangerIsMyMiddleName at 11:32 PM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


    I'm personally against any sex education other than birth control, because the embarrassed stories people tell about finding out about sex are worth more to me than the social harm of ignorance. Some day I expect to find a yahoo answers quote like the following:

    so i uzed to have this girlfrend who like, told me she was dumping me cause my penis was too wide, and I figured it was a lie, but before i figured that out i was like well the vagina can handle a babby, no way my penis is too wide, and i compared my penis to my oldest sisters babby and thats right when her boyfriend walked in and i said no dude i can explain, and then i woke up in the hospital and then i had to register as a sex offender, and then i realized that my girlfrend lied to me.

    Maybe I need a little therapy.
    posted by BrotherCaine at 12:31 AM on March 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


    Are you serious? Physical attractiveness is a matter of taste. Intelligence is not, primarily. Saying that two plus two equals five is not a difference of opinion; it's just wrong. Saying that blue eyes are prettier than brown eyes has no empirical gauge

    Except, as pointed out above, symmetry is an objective trait, and is almost universally considered attractive. As well, each type of intelligence may have objective metrics, but how those types are weighted cannot be anything but subjective. Unless you have a useful argument for combining social aptitude, math, spacial relations, verbal skills, mechanical skills, color perception, etc... into one objective number that ranks us all, it's all at least in part subjective.
    posted by BrotherCaine at 12:49 AM on March 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


    I think these site are not about that hippy-dippy shit that everyone is beautiful. Some people are beautiful, some are ugly, most are in between. These sites try to dispel the myth that MOST people ARE beautiful and you are not normal and should not go out and find someone to get it on with because they will be disgusted by you.

    Too bad I didn't see these sites on Saturday night. Maybe with a brighter frame of mind about myself I would have gone out for a change.
    posted by Foam Pants at 1:02 AM on March 2, 2009


    Man, I feel so much better about myself after looking through that bouquet of penii.

    Did you say bouquet?
    posted by BrotherCaine at 1:10 AM on March 2, 2009


    typical of this place; overthinking a plate of penes.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 1:31 AM on March 2, 2009 [2 favorites]


    every time I see one I want to knit it a little hat, and I don't even knit. Maybe even a little turtleneck.

    My penis is NOT Mr. Rogers!

    However, I like your reverential attitude so if you were to change that outfit up a little -- maybe a Kangol beanie hat, a FUBU sweat-shirt and throw in a cock ring by Jacob the Jeweller or maybe some custom grillz for the eye, perhaps then we could have ourselves a date?
    posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:38 AM on March 2, 2009


    Alternatively, if the previous outfit doesn't appeal, maybe we could try something in a fedora? Because I hear that Mefites who wear fedoras have all the luck with the ladies. So a Mefite who wears a fedora on his penis must surely be doubly blessed?
    posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:44 AM on March 2, 2009


    Beautiful != Sexy.
    Mrs. Toad doubtless feels quite differently about Mr. Toad, than some folks here. While I'm no toad-fucker, I do find both frogs and toads to be beautiful.

    A lack of beauty is no impediment to being damn sexy!

    A very plain-looking woman can be astoundingly beautiful. Don't let the shallow advertising crap train you into shallow thinking.

    Jonmc: Your friend was impossible to resist for a rational human. Firman/EMT? That means he can save life. Good looking too? Oh my. And wealthy? What is not to like? I should the poor man would become bored with the ladies being too easily attainable! As for yourself: you don't make the most of what you got. Maybe that has to do with being married (checks mirror), yea, that seems likely.
    posted by Goofyy at 5:09 AM on March 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


    grapefruitmoon, re: If someone would write a "women's magazine" along the lines of "Wear cute stuff, eat nice food, play with your hair, and hang out and be groovy" I'd be down with that - but what actually gets published is subliminally demonizing with the message that if you BUY MORE CRAP you'll feel way better about your particular human condition.

    You should check out BUST Magazine.
    posted by sadiehawkinstein at 6:09 AM on March 2, 2009


    You should check out BUST Magazine.

    Eh, BUST is better, but not loads better. It's just about buying handmade crap to feel better about the human condition, although it's not nearly as body negative as the vast majority of women's mags out there.

    Incidentally, I'm 90% sure there was a "one handed read" in there once about knitting penis cozies.
    posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 6:57 AM on March 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


    My penis is NOT Mr. Rogers!

    I said a turtleneck, not a cardigan. Who in their right mind would put a cardigan on a penis?
    posted by Evangeline at 7:36 AM on March 2, 2009 [5 favorites]


    A Belle & Sebastian fan?
    posted by UbuRoivas at 8:13 AM on March 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


    Penis Dimension
    posted by Restless Day at 8:13 AM on March 2, 2009


    Except, as pointed out above, symmetry is an objective trait, and is almost universally considered attractive. As well, each type of intelligence may have objective metrics, but how those types are weighted cannot be anything but subjective. Unless you have a useful argument for combining social aptitude, math, spacial relations, verbal skills, mechanical skills, color perception, etc... into one objective number that ranks us all, it's all at least in part subjective.

    Symmetry's near-universal appeal doesn't change much by way of how each human being has differing tastes and standards when it comes to attractiveness. As far as the subjectiveness of intelligence, sure, there's wiggle room. But intelligence is still far less an issue of taste than physical attractiveness is.
    posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:25 AM on March 2, 2009


    About beauty, I'm early 50s, cancer-survivor, bilateral mastectomy and reconstructed breasts, scars to prove it, 2 adult kids, younger SO who is very goodlooking, a 'catch.' For me, beauty is alive, written and being written on the body. I still dance around the bedroom in my best undies for my man, and I don't even remember what's no longer young, what I've lost, how I've changed. I'm just all lit up, and so is he.

    jonmc, I have to tell you something. Your friend in the picture you seem to believe will perfectly illustrate your point that conventions of beauty rule? To me he looks like Dudley Do-right, square-jawed and squinty-eyed and cartoony. I think you are confirming your own bias about the conventionally goodlookers always getting laid. Perhaps if you were less focused on guaging the effect he was having and commanded your own audience in your own self-possessed way, you would have won the attention you seem bitter about not having had. Because in that photo, to me, you -- an angry young man in flannel shirt, cynical, skeptical, seeing, leaning both in and away (because you are attracted to his attractiveness, yet expecting you will not 'win' ...) would have been more interesting to me. Based on the photo, of course.
    posted by thinkpiece at 8:42 AM on March 2, 2009 [6 favorites]


    Is it wrong that this thread is making me horny?
    posted by GrammarMoses at 8:56 AM on March 2, 2009


    So now we've got the equipment all sorted out. How is babby formed again?
    posted by greekphilosophy at 9:08 AM on March 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


    Nthing thinkpiece's eloquent comments.

    We've commoditized and homogenized human beauty to such an extreme that Ken and Barbie now represent standardized perfection for our species. And because of the ubiquitous presence of photoshopped, airbrushed images of faux-gods and goddesses (coupled with ads at every website for cosmetic surgery, weight loss aids, and anti-aging panaceas), as a culture we've lost touch with unconventional, real beauty.

    I frequently find that when I encounter yet another website plastered with "Before/After" cosmetic surgery photos, I find the individuals in the "Before" photos far more attractive, engaging, and interesting than the cookie-cutter faces-and-bodies in the "After" shots. A price is paid for physical conformity that includes a loss of character.

    I am sure you are quite beautiful, thinkpiece.
    posted by terranova at 10:34 AM on March 2, 2009


    thinkpiece: as I've said before, there's a huuuge gulf between what people say (because it's the right thing to say) and how they actually act. Not accusing you of anything, just saying what I've seen.

    Based on the photo, of course.

    That photo was taken about 8 years ago in a bar and IIRC, we were both really hammered, so we probably weren't that attractive to anyone. (although...one night me and him were drinking a hotel bar which had one of those TV-based trivia games that we were playing. At the table next to us was a middle-aged guy and his teenage son. When I get drunk, I get talkative and kind of loopy, so I jabbered to everybody. I got up to go pee and when I came back the old guy and his son were gone. Apparently, after I left, my friend leaned over to them and said "Yes, I realize he can be obnoxious, but we're very deeply in love." Cleared 'em out, toot sweet.)
    posted by jonmc at 10:53 AM on March 2, 2009


    and this is actually a better photo of us.
    posted by jonmc at 11:00 AM on March 2, 2009


    I once tried to knit a hat and failed miserably. It looked an awful lot like a penis-cozy.

    I knit cock socks.
    posted by tits mcgee at 11:49 AM on March 2, 2009


    jon, nah, you're still better looking, lanky and lean-y. He's boxy and tense and standard-issue and i'm not gonna brook any further discussion.

    terranova, *bats eyelashes* thank you, and thanks to the pink lightbulbs I use in my bathroom, which keep me in the rosy, kind semi-dark.
    posted by thinkpiece at 12:46 PM on March 2, 2009


    McDonald's is delicious. Anyone who says different is either trying to make Burger King feel better or make themselves feel better about their own cooking.
    posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:49 PM on March 2, 2009


    or they work for White Castle. ;>
    posted by jonmc at 12:58 PM on March 2, 2009


    Or count how many images, in one day, you can find of a woman's perfectly toned, young, white, utterly flawless body on TV, internet ads, newspapers, magazines, and outdoor advertising. That will take you a while also.

    I'm guessing about a day.
    posted by owtytrof at 1:56 PM on March 2, 2009 [4 favorites]


    Eh, neither BUST nor jonmc's fireman friend does it for me.

    I dunno, I can never really get excited about BUST. I can't decide if I should start the revolution, dye my hair pink, or take a nap. I usually go for the latter.

    If we could somehow breed Bitch magazine with what Jane used to be like when it first came out, THAT is what I want. I think this is what BUST is going for, but it just feels incredibly, painfully hip. I dunno, Vogue is at least a trainwreck - BUST should be awesome... but isn't.

    As for jonmc's friend: his eyes are squinty and his head's all square. Glad that other ladies are going for him because I would definitely pass him over based on looks alone. 'moonMan is way more up my alley. Apparently, it's not just me. I've had people comment to me that he's the hottest guy they've ever seen, which always makes me feel a little weird. Thanks? I guess? You can't have him? Um, what?
    posted by grapefruitmoon at 2:04 PM on March 2, 2009


    McDonald's: I'd hit it.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 2:15 PM on March 2, 2009


    uhh, grapefruitmoon, your guy (who I'm sure like my friend is a swell guy) is pretty conventionally handsome as well, just a different type than my buddy.
    posted by jonmc at 3:09 PM on March 2, 2009


    johnmc, your friend doesn't really work for me, either - looks strangely like Henry Rollins or something in that picture. I think that young woman was checking you out, though.

    I will agree that most people are attracted to similar types. I just think it's more or less meaningless.

    I'm not really sure why anyone would post that cocks are ugly, especially in a thread like this. There's not really any such thing as ugly, as some of these comments show. There's somebody out there who is going to like whatever, no matter how outside the "norm" he/she/it is. And, of course, cocks are hot.
    posted by Nabubrush at 3:47 PM on March 2, 2009


    Reading the back-and-forths with you, jonmc, reminds me of a comment some Hollywood persona made about Steve Buscemi, who is not conventionally handsome. This guy said good-humouredly that Buscemi was the only male celebrity of whom his wife had said, "I probably shouldn't be alone in a room with him," and that he had heard similar sentiments from a large number of his women friends who moved in the same rarefied circles and were used to hobnobbing with Sexiest Men Alive. IIRC, he specifically mentioned that according to them, conventionally good-looking celebs like Harrison Ford were, compared to Buscemi, as sexy as wallpaper. (I'd love to do Buscemi myself, which is probably why this sticks in my memory.)

    Not that that helps any lonely singles out there, getting literally shoved aside while hordes of sexually interesting people stampede over you to your conventionally hottie friend who already gets more come-ons than s/he knows what to do with...but still. Attraction to just packaging by itself doesn't last, and people who are worth spending time with put effort into knowing and honouring the whole package (I told myself through my lonely teens and twenties, and then once I hit 30 all these interesting, not-shallow men started coming out of the woodwork, so it took a while to pay off but it was worth it).

    Of course if the metric is just sheer quantity of lays, then never mind.
    posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 4:12 PM on March 2, 2009


    There's superficial beauty, and then there's wabi-sabi.
    posted by vas deference at 7:03 PM on March 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


    *clicks link*

    Seen it.
    posted by BaxterG4 at 7:55 PM on March 2, 2009


    Enter vas deference. The anticipation is over.
    posted by gman at 7:59 PM on March 2, 2009


    And I, for one, welcome our semen-spouting overlord.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 8:26 PM on March 2, 2009


    The comment about Buscemi was on the director's commentary track of the Ghost World DVD. Every woman I've quizzed about it said 'no way'.

    But then again, I had a five year relationship with someone who thought Christopher Walken and Andrew Vachss were smoking hot‽ So conventional attractiveness is not for everyone.
    posted by BrotherCaine at 10:39 AM on March 3, 2009


    Oh yeah, it was the Ghost World commentary! No wonder I couldn't find it online. Thanks, BrotherCaine. Heh. I go for Walken too.

    Thank, everybody, for all the excellent links and laughs.
    posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 10:44 PM on March 3, 2009


    Steve Buscemi is self-deprecating, smart and funny. Definitely sexy. It's not just the looks, it's the whole package. Ahem. Not that I want to bring up packages in this thread any more...
    posted by misha at 6:30 AM on March 4, 2009


    What can Brown do for you?
    posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:36 AM on March 4, 2009


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