Posts Tagged ‘national masturbation month’

May is National Masturbation Month

May 13, 2010  |  miscellany  |  2 Comments

I don’t even know what to add to this … I’ve never participated, as someone who took pledges, though that sure would be fun. Anybody out there going to take part?

From the Good Vibrations press release:

buy kamagraes.com/?kbid=34272&m=24&i=107″>Good Vibrations, for 33 years America’s trusted purveyor of sexual knowledge and quality products for women (and everyone else), says, “It’s National Masturbation Month! Give yourself a hand! Or a vibrator, or something else stimulating, and don’t forget the lube!”

Good Vibes founded National Masturbation Month in 1995 in the wake of the controversy surrounding the firing of former Clinton administration Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders, who evoked conservative wrath when she opined that discussion of masturbation might have a place in sex education curricula. Realizing that one simple, sensible mention of solo pleasuring was enough to lose this prominent woman, the country’s first African-American surgeon general, her job convinced Good Vibrations staff that this most basic and accessible form of sex needed a serious image boost.

Some things have changed since 1995, but National Masturbation Month is still a necessary reminder that self-satisfaction is a healthy, accessible form of pleasure engaged in by almost everyone, of every gender and relationship status, at some time of (or throughout) their lives: It’s relaxing, allows people to learn more about their own sexual response, is a basic recommendation of sex therapists that can help people with many different sexual concerns, relieves menstrual cramps, and helps keep the genitals fully functional. On top of that, it’s the safest form of sex a person can have.

“Too many people still feel uncomfortable about masturbation and guilty about doing it,” says Good Vibrations staff sexologist Carol Queen, Ph.D., one of the originators of the National Masturbation Month concept. “If only so much of US culture were not so burdened with ideas that masturbation is shameful, a sin or a poor second choice to partner sex.

GV also created and promoted the Masturbate-a-Thon, a charity event that encourages people to get pledges from their friends and raise funds via masturbation. (This event was celebrated privately by individuals; it has since morphed into a public event, not conducted by Good Vibes, that raises funds for the Center for Sex & Culture, and Masturbate-a-Thons are also held in other parts of the country and world – the other largest one is an annual event in Copenhagen. For more, see www.masturbate-a-thon.com.)

Most importantly, however, Good Vibrations continues to celebrate masturbation as we have always done: as each individual’s birthright, and as a basic pleasure that is the foundation for our other sexual experience. Visit Good Vibrations for information (in books, videos, and from our trained Sex Educator Sales Associate staff members), pleasure products of all kinds (vibrators, dildos, and of course lubricants), and inspiration (erotic books and movies). Whether shared with a partner or kept as a solo secret, self-love is accessible to, and good for, everyone.

Sideshow! The Queer Literary Carnival May 11th

May 5, 2010  |  miscellany  |  No Comments

Well folks, it’s that time again …

Did you know May is National Masturbation Month? The Sex Blogger Calendar tells me it was because of US Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders being fired in 1995 for saying masturbation was “something that should be taught.” According to the Good Vibes magazine, “In 1995, just months after US Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders had been fired for mildly pro-masturbation remarks, Good Vibrations launched National Masturbation Month. Dedicated to increasing discussion and ending the stigma surrounding self-pleasure, GV added new elements to the monthly celebration each year, finally introducing the Masturbate-a-Thon, a fundraiser featuring pledge-getting, (private) masturbation and charity donations.”

The Masturbate-a-Thon website hasn’t been launched yet, but save the date—it happens this year on May 30th.

And in honor of National Masturbation Month, Sideshow’s May gathering of poets, writers, and rebel-rousers will be under the topic of navel-gazing (for which the fancy word is omphaloskepsis).

Please join us! It will be a fantastic gathering.

Sideshow: The Queer Literary Carnival
“serious literature for ridiculous times”
Hosted by Cheryl B. & Sinclair Sexsmith

May 11 @ Phoenix
447 East 13th Street @ Avenue A
Doors, 7:30pm. Reading promptly at 8.
Free
Sideshow website
RSVP on Facebook
@sideshowseries

This month’s theme is NAVEL-GAZING, starring:
Michael Broder
Audacia Ray
Ignacio Rivera
Jason Schneiderman

The Readers

Michael Broder’s poems, reviews, and essays have appeared in Painted Bride Quarterly, BLOOM, Columbia Poetry Review, Court Green, and other journals, as well as in the anthologies This New Breed: Gents, Bad Boys and Barbarians 2 and My Diva: 65 Gay Men on the Women Who Inspire Them. He is currently completing a doctoral dissertation on queer kinship and camp aesthetics in Roman satire at the City University of New York. Having grown up in Coney Island in the days when there was still an “under the boardwalk,” he claims to be the original SIDESHOW!

Audacia Ray is a media maker and activist who is passionate about sexual rights. Presently, Audacia is the Program Officer for Online Communications and Campaigns at the International Women’s Health Coalition, an adjunct professor of Human Sexuality at Rutgers University, the co-host of the monthly reading series Sex Worker Literati, and the author of Naked on the Internet: Hookups, Downloads, and Cashing In on Internet Sexploration. Audacia is a former sex worker who was an executive editor at $pread magazine for three years and is a co-founder of advocacy organization Sex Work Awareness, where she provides media training workshops for sex workers. Dacia is also the award-winning director and producer of the porn feature The Bi Apple as well as the producer and star of the comedic film short Dacia’s Love Machine. She has blogged at WakingVixen.com since 2004.

Ignacio Rivera aka Papi Coxxx who prefers the gender-neutral pronoun “they” has spoken at home and abroad on various topics including but not limited to sexuality, racism, sexism, transgender issues, anti-oppression, anti-violence, sexual liberation and multi-issue organizing. Ignacio’s work has manifested itself through skits, one-person shows, poetry, lectures, workshops and experimental film. More at http://www.ignaciorivera.com.

Jason Schneiderman is the author of Sublimation Point, a Stahlecker Selection from Four Way Books, and Striking Surface, winner of the 2009 Richard Snyder Prize from Ashland Poetry Press. His poetry and essays have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including American Poetry Review, The Best American Poetry, Poetry London, Grand Street, The Penguin Book of the Sonnet, Story Quarterly, and Tin House. He has received fellowships from Yaddo, The Fine Arts Work Center, and The Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. He was the recipient of the Emily Dickinson Award from the Poetry Society of America in 2004. A graduate of the MFA program at NYU, he is currently completing his doctorate at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.

The Curators

Cheryl B. (cherylb.com) is an award-winning writer, poet and performer. Her work appears in dozens of print and online publications, including; Ping Pong, Word Warriors: 35 Women Leaders in the Spoken Word Revolution (Seal Press, 2007) and BLOOM, among many others. She has appeared at most major New York City literary evenings and toured throughout the U.S, Canada and the U.K. Cheryl lives in Brooklyn and teaches memoir writing at Gotham Writers’ Workshop.

Sinclair Sexsmith runs the award-winning personal online writing project Sugarbutch Chronicles: The Sex, Gender, and Relationship Adventures of a Kinky Queer Butch Top at sugarbutch.net. With work published in various anthologies, including the Best Lesbian Erotica series, Sometimes She Lets Me: Butch/Femme Erotica, and Visible: A Femmethology volume 2, Mr. Sexsmith enjoys whiskey, topping, the serial comma, political activism, and has been known to get on her knees in order to fix the strappy sandals of a queer femme. Sugarbutch Star chapbooks are available, if you ask nicely (and have ten bucks).