Tag: sex

Find Your Sexual Persona with the Queer Sex Personality Quiz

Find Your Sexual Persona with the Queer Sex Personality Quiz

When you hear the word “sexuality,” you think “sexual orientation,” but that’s only one slice of your personal erotic pie. You probably have some sense of which gender(s) rev your motor, but that doesn’t say much about your overall proclivities. Are you a daring queer kinkster, or are you a little more subdued? Do you flirt to win, or do you prefer a lingering chase? You might call yourself a “top” or  a “bottom” or a “sub,” but there’s a whole lot more to who you are between the sheets. 

Take this queer sex personality quiz to find your sexual persona and the perfect toy to suit your sexual spirit. Learning to embrace your true erotic personality is the perfect quarantine activity, and sex toys are the perfect tools for unlocking your erotic imagination. Sometimes it takes a little trial and error find the right sex toy for you, but this quiz will help you find your way to a toy that matches your vibe.

You can order all of these toys from HolyFour, a queer-owned, online sex toy retailer committed to helping you shop for pleasure tools in a friendly, judgement-free zone. Use the discount code AUTOSTRADDLE for 15% off!

Okay, queers. Are you ready? Let’s vibe!


The Fallen Tracee and Sex Industry Labor Rights in “The Sopranos”

The Fallen Tracee and Sex Industry Labor Rights in "The

Outside of the Bada Bing Club Tracee lights a cigarette, soon to be followed outside by Ralphie, her lover and effectively her boss; he works with and for the owner and famed New Jersey mobster Tony Soprano. Tracee had insulted Ralphie’s manhood inside the club in front of his friends, in most ways a lover’s quarrel. Ralphie plays a doting lover, putting forth ideas of suburban homes and their child that Tracee is pregnant with. Ralphie then switches to extreme cruelty, expressing that he hopes it isn’t a girl so she won’t end up a “cocksuckin’ slob just like her mother.” Tracee pushes, screams, and punches Ralphie in the face in anger, only to have her whole body slammed against the metal roadblocks and head caved in by Ralphie’s fist. Ralphie later claims that Tracee “fell,” which, to Tony Soprano’s credit, he calls bullshit on. But Tony exclaims that Ralphie was “disrespecting the Bing” — the club, not the woman — and even in death Ralphie blames her. “It’s my fault she’s a klutz?” When her dead body is discovered, Tony and the other mobsters at the Bing stare over her body. Tony exclaims, “Twenty years old, this girl!”

The University episode of The Sopranos is one of the most controversial episodes of the entire series due to the graphic nature of Tracee’s death, having resulted in an uptick of HBO subscription cancellations — at least according to the actress who plays Tracee, Ariel Kiley. It’s the only episode within The Sopranos in which the audience can see how the New Jersey mobsters that make up Soprano’s men interact with their employees at the Bada Bing Club. It’s not that the Bing isn’t featured in The Sopranos otherwise; quite the opposite. The Bada Bing Club is in almost every episode, serving as a space for Tony Soprano’s men to not just make money but also to take out their own lack of emotional regulation on the club’s employees, from the bouncers to the dancers. But the University episode is the only one in which any of the dancers actually talks in any meaningful way; where she’s more than just an intro shot while dancing or background as grown men play at big crime. Tracee, the only named and personified stripper of the Bada Bing Club, is often brought up as an example of how The Sopranos treats women horribly — which is also true. Women are treated horribly on The Sopranos, but the reality is that if one only takes away from The University episode that the show has a problem with misogyny, well they would be actively ignoring the fact that Tracee’s murder at the hands of Ralphie didn’t just happen because she was a woman, it happened (and is excused in the world of The Sopranos time and time again) because she was a sex worker.

Every aspect of the targeted violence against Tracee, outside of the systemic violence of poverty and misogyny, happened to her directly due to her work at the Bada Bing Club. Violence from her bosses (Silvio punched her in the face because she didn’t show up to work for three days, and her lover Ralphie, a made man, technically is one of her bosses), coercive sex with a cop, and her eventual gruesome murder — which is of course then covered up quickly. Her death is but a plot point to make Tony seem sympathetic through his emotional connection to her death — but the way he justifies his interest in her death is because it “disrespected the Bing” and he constantly underplays throughout the whole third season (and into the fourth) the clear impact Tracee’s death had on him. Tracee’s death is used as a plotline for Tony’s humanization. Their connection, however minor, had an impact on Tony and him holding a grudge towards Ralphie for her death is meant to humanize Tony. As Tony is a narcissist though, it’s much more likely that he was using even her dead corpse as a way to have attention and command power. That’s not to say he didn’t care for her on some level; but that if he really cared for her, wouldn’t she have had better working conditions in the club? For some reason he couldn’t admit to the shame of grieving a whore, which is what he’s reminded of every time he would bring up her death. “But Tony, she was a whore.”

It’s difficult to watch the scene where Ralph kills Tracee for basically anyone with a stomach – and a heart – but as someone who had been literally beaten by a client while working in an abusive dungeon, watching that episode wrecked me. Not because a woman had been murdered on the screen but because a sex worker had, so brutally, and her blood-coated body was voyeuristically stared at by everyone. There is no other woman on the show who is beaten so brutally; there’s none other whose death is meant to be a statement on her life. Men in The Sopranos aren’t known for necessarily treating women amazingly but the levels of targeted disgust, control, and humiliation that was extended to Tracee would never have happened to a non sex-working woman on the show. It’s also interesting to note that Ariel Kiley, the actress who portrayed Tracee in the show, blogged that James Gandolfini himself actually made the decision to exclaim after Tracee was murdered, “Oh god, so young, only twenty years old.” The original screenplay actually had Soprano telling his men to be careful to not get blood on the carpet they were rolling her body up in. Gandolfini was right to know that the audience would react poorly to his character going the uncaring route, so instead they attached Tracee’s death to some kind of indicator of Soprano’s morality. Like yes, he is a mobster, but look at his unspoken grief? When he finally beats Ralphie to death over an abused horse (in the eleventh episode of season five, The Test Dream, which resulted in a write up in The Baltimore Sun mourning Ralpie’s death), he screams “You fucking killed her!” and we all know he’s not talking about the horse.

Even good criticisms of the show’s misogyny in this episode (and generally), do not really emphasize the fact that Tracee was a stripper. When they do, it’s always to fall into the Madonna-Whore Comparative narrative of Meadow, Tony’s daughter who loses her virginity in the same episode, and Tracee being painted of course as this victim of circumstance. The audience is meant to grasp that Meadow has been given every opportunity in life, both educationally as well as within her romantic and familial relationships. She goes to Columbia, she’s able to pursue men at her own pace sexually and she has her mother Carmela, Tony’s wife, who can offer her support. Tracee, on the other hand, grew up with an abusive mother, has a child by the age of twenty (she was pregnant with a second child at the time of her murder), and works in an exploitative working environment The Bada Bing Club. To be clear, there is nothing inherently exploitative about stripping (nor sex work in general), but the working conditions of that specific club were atrocious.

There is a lot to be said about the odd parallels of various kinds of organized criminalized labor and the often gendered (even though, not always) differences of the work, the fact that the Bada Bing Club itself serves as almost a junction of mob crime along with stripping. It’s interesting that in the world of The Sopranos their work is completely respectable, despite the body count, while with Tracee in her contexts the route that The Sopranos chose to go, instead of a thorough exploration of how these worlds intersect, the route of doom for the “fallen woman,” while their made men get big homes and outwardly happy families. Sex work is often a way for people to work their way out of poverty into levels of financial stability; Tracee was denied this dream and even have it laughed in her face right before she’s murdered.

The working conditions at the Bada Bing Club are obvious from the get go because the bouncer of the VIP room directly states that if you want to go to the VIP room and make a couple grand, you have to pay out to him AND give him a blowjob. This conversation happens twice, in the beginning of the episode and after Tracee’s murder, while the bouncer talks to the new girl hired (it’s implied she was hired to make up for the loss of Tracee in the money pool). This is also a very clear sign of an abusive working environment when you’re a sex worker in a managed space, not just the demands for extras but the fact that often the workers are so in and out that it’s barely noticed when they are gone.

If you work in a semi-criminalized to fully criminalized work environment, there is often no way to organize as workers, or organizing is perilous. There are no sort of protections of any sort and often the law is against you, which can be seen by the scene of Ralphie rawing Tracee as she’s forced to suck the cock of a gross cop. It’s common for sex workers to be raped by cops, both by going undercover as clients and arresting them afterwards, as well as extorting money or threatening arrest. In a study mentioned in a SWOP USA report in New York City, up to 17% of sex workers interviewed reported sexual harrassment and abuse, including rape, at the hands of the police. The likelihood of cop harassment increases if you work outdoors and are at a higher threat of surveillance; however, it can and does happen in managed spaces as well with a Chicago study referenced in the same report 30% of erotic dancers in managed spaces and 24% of street-based sex workers identified a police offer as their rapist.

When they include the brief scene of Tracee being eiffel towered with Ralph and the cop, they expressed the clear relationship between law enforcement and abusive working environments in sex work. Margaret Prescod, Founder of the Black Coalition Fighting Back Serial Murders, was correct in declaring that law enforcement was designed to “uphold men’s power over women in order to uphold their own power over everyone.” Even though she may have been referring to law enforcement’s tendency to ignore the serial murders of Black sex workers in Los Angeles in the 1980s at the hands of The Grim Sleeper, it’s important to be reminded that when sex workers are murder victims, especially those who work outdoors under high police and societal surveillance, their cases are labeled by law enforcement NHI, or “No Human Involved.” This term is often also used for those who are houseless or have a history of chronic drug use.

When Tracee is found dead by Ralphie’s hands, they know they have no reason to worry, because no one is coming to check up on her. The tail end of the episode shows girls gossiping at the Bada Bing about what they think could have happened to Tracee: “I heard she went outside with Ralphie and never came back.” Her co-worker replies, “Do yourself a favor, keep what you hear to yourself.” Sometimes working conditions can feel hopeless; it can feel safer to watch your own neck than show solidarity with your fellow worker. But also one can hardly blame other sex workers for trying to navigate a managed space in a criminalized system. It took me a long time to move past the fact no one came and checked in on me when I was being beaten, despite my audible yelling rooms away. It took me an even longer time to rightfully place the blame on the owner who allowed the man that beat me to return to the dungeon, even begging me to allow him a chance to “apologize” for crossing my boundaries. Managed spaces that toe the line between the civilian and criminal worlds, a part of the demimonde if you will, create difficult conditions for labor organizing because the only recognized labor deserving of protections in the eyes of society is labor that isn’t criminalized. This is seen in how the club operates with law enforcement to keep the status quo, to keep the club worker in line and silent, still allowing 50% of the profits to go to men who aren’t even in the room half the time. Envisioning a world where Tracee isn’t murdered, gets radicalized and tries to organize the club, we know Tony would have her clipped, so it’s ironic that her death is used to highlight “Tony’s Humanity,” when in all reality even if Tony did care for Tracee, he cared about his bottom line more.

The facts are that Tony Soprano made Ralphie a Captain, promoting him in the structure of the mob, after murdering Tracee, even if it was only because he felt he had no other option. Despite Tony’s disgust for Ralphie, again he chooses what he’s “supposed” to do for his business instead of processing his anger over Tracee’s death. Ralphie got to wipe Tracee’s murder out of his life, her presence barely noticed when gone, just another body on the long list of bodies that exist in the wake of the New Jersey and New York City mobsters. Tracee never gets a funeral.

But unlike the other bodies on that long list, Tracee existed to fill an archetype: the hooker with a heart of gold, the woman fallen from grace, Tony’s make-shift daughter, the whore to Meadow’s madonna. She is written so as to be pitied, a poor girl with a hard and bluntly ended life. It is also very clear from the get go that we are not to expect good things for her — after all, every time Tracee’s onscreen it’s for the audience to be reminded of how her fate is inevitably, irrelevant of what it is, completely out of her control. Either she stays at the club after an abortion, marries Ralphie, has the kid, and really gets that dreamy suburban existence never promised to girls like her, or she ends up staining some mobster’s carpet. Maybe it’s due to the brevity of her character’s presence on the show, but Tracee’s character was never allowed the nuance for an attempt at autonomy or control; she is ripped from the chance therefore forever stuck as a disposable whore to the criminals of the mob. Criminals who also approach each other with various levels of disposability, but allow real grief to coexist with that. They might kill each other but they’ll show up at the funeral and make sure their wives are taken care of after the fact — what of Tracee’s family? The Sopranos chose to let her stain the carpet but she could never get a normal good work environment nor could she lift herself up outside of poverty into some sort of middle class wet dream. Representations of sex workers in television so often exist to remind us that horrible things are not only expected for us but inevitable, excusable, and necessary for story development. When Tony Soprano has to grasp his grief over Tracee’s death, he can only comprehend his pain in the personification of Tracee through a horse named Pie-Oh-My. It’s telling that the only acceptable thing to grieve in his world is his dead horse; whenever Tracee is brought up mournfully, people downplay her death with her status as a sex worker.

When will the day come where we have representation in which we are not dead at the end, abused, or exploited? When will we have our days in the sun, with stories of joy and community? In some ways The Sopranos portrayal of Tracee did allow for levels of connection to sex working characters that many audiences usually wouldn’t have had at that time (the episode aired April 1 2001; Tracee died before 9/11). However, even the things that they use to humanize her are based in pity for her life. This often happens in portrayals of people who trade sex: they’ve gotten caught up in something outside of their control, they’re going to be harmed, and even if they have a heart of gold, they’re going to be victimized in some way. In reality, even though there are people who are survivors within the sex industry, the things that lead to victimization is the combination of criminalization, stigma, and poverty. Imagine a world where Tracee wouldn’t have had to suck that cop off because she wouldn’t have had the law at her throat for saying no. Imagine a world where she could sue Silvio for punching her in the face. There are so many creative and innovative routes a person’s life can take; so why do so many media portrayals attempt to decide our destinies for us? I would love to know in the current timeline in The Sopranos reality if the Bada Bing still exists and if the dancers have more control of the business now; I want a Bada Bing Club Collective. The Sopranos is an amazing story that still rightfully grips audiences to this day, but imagine an alternative world where Tracee survived, where she got revenge on Ralphie and Tony let her walk scot free. Imagine if our liberation was a plotpoint instead of our demise? The Sopranos wasn’t willing to.

What Your Zodiac Sign Says About Your Sex Life

What Your Zodiac Sign Says About Your Sex Life

Astrology is a fun thing to think about for many people, and for every person who thinks it’s utter garbage there’s bound to be someone who uses their astrological signs to make many important life choices. Personally, I think it has as much power over you as you allow it – just like any other “alternative” sciences.

So, what does this mean for you? Your choice to believe in astrology or not is purely a personal decision. If you find correlations that help you, that’s great! Everyone needs something to believe in, and if astrology is your thing, the following “sex horoscopes” may help guide you on your path to sexual fulfillment for this month.


Aries (March 20 – April 20)

Aries, if you’re single, you should expect a great deal of new encounters this month – some may even call them adventures on their own! On the 9th, Mercury goes direct, which promises that your love and sex will be truly exciting. Later in the month, Mars joins with Venus to entice the prospect of new dates and sexy fun. If it seems like your romantic interest isn’t feeling the same way about you, rest assured that they’re probably just shy. Make the first move and you will be rewarded.

For the Rams in a serious relationship, the full moon brings a blossoming of your love, so you should plan for new romantic encounters with your love. This will lead to the passionate sex you’ve been dying for, and makes for a perfect excuse to look for that sexy Halloween costume you’ve had your eye on. Not big into Halloween? That’s fine, just take advantage of the current influx of costumes to pick out an outfit that’s only for your partner to see.


Taurus (April 20 – May 21)

In the second half of the month, the shroud that’s been covering your sensuality should be lifted, and you have plenty of time to approach that new boo you’ve been eyeing. Make that date – you’ve got a great deal of luck coming to you this month. Make sure you don’t use this as an excuse to over-spend on your dates, though; this isn’t the way to win their affections.
Committed Bulls, the cooler weather will no doubt bring back the spark that you’ve been repressing lately. It’s a great time to get frisky with your lover – maybe even get the Halloween treats and costumes into the mix for some special holiday fun.


Gemini (May 21 – June 21)

Gemini, this month brings you personal satisfaction and a great deal of pleasure. Your intelligence and charm will help you win over that woman you’ve been pursuing. Your judgment will be clear and your sex drive will roar because of it. You’ll be able to accurately discern who is interested in you sexually, and use this to your full advantage this month. However, towards the end of the month, this will begin to taper off, and you’ll be more inclined to connect with your family than to seek out a new flame – don’t resist this urge!

If you’re in a committed relationship, your dual spirit will lead you to a deeper personal connection with your partner. Take some time to get to know her better – even if you’ve been together years, there’s no doubt a lot more to learn about her. Whether you’re in a relationship or not, this is a good time to seek out new friends, as the wavering in your sex drive will ensure that your attention can be focused on being a good friend and partner, rather than focusing on your sexual needs.


Cancer (June 21 – July 23)

For most of the month, you should be focusing on taking care of your body. This can be particularly difficult with the abundance of candy that’s present everywhere right now, but you must be diligent. Take some time to work on your emotional bonds, and it will translate to a better sexual experience around the 22nd. Don’t plan for any dates on the 27th, as the full moon may interfere with your plans and lead to heartbreak.

Love and sex are both a bit of an investment this month for all Crabs. Exercising with your love interest or partner could prove beneficial, as it will help to regulate your emotions and clear your mind. You will be rewarded for your focus and dedication with the glorious conjunction of Venus, Mars, and Jupiter towards the end of the month.


Leo (July 23 – August 23)

Your animal magnetism will shine bright this month, Leo, and you will be showered with affection. Consider making those changes you’ve been thinking about in regards to your wardrobe and your hair style – these will dazzle your new date. You could try a Halloween shopping date and choose a fun costume for yourself and your new partner – then tempt them to bring it to the bedroom for some extra sexy fun.

For the Lions in a committed relationship, you should put your effort into your relationship right now. Take some time off work, if at all possible, and spend that time with your partner. Get a fun new costume or outfit and parade yourself to your partner – she’s sure to love it. With Halloween so close, the full moon on the 27th promises to be a fun time for a private rendezvous in costume – what do you have to lose?


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Virgo (August 23 – September 23)

During the beginning of the month, you probably encountered some stress and hectic emotions. Rest assured that this is over for now and you can begin to relax. The alignment of Mars and Venus assure that your sexual appetite will boom – you should seek out a new partner and plan a great date. It’ll definitely net you the results you’re looking for.

If you’re in a committed relationship, it’s a good time to rent a sexy movie or read an erotic novel with your love. This activity will bring you closer as a couple and allow you to bring back the spice.

Consider planning an unforgettable evening, including a candlelight dinner, around the 27th – your partner will thank you accordingly!


Libra (September 23 – October 23)

Libra, this month has some few surprises up its sleeve for you, especially as it pertains to sex and love. You should expect some good news sometime soon – but don’t forget to set aside some attention to the important matters like your bills. The alignment of the planets right now will lead you to focus on your lustful thoughts, but you must not neglect the other aspects of your life.

For my committed Libra friends, this means that you should plan on a more romantic tone with your lover, and allow things to progress naturally. Don’t try to push the sex as you can get wrapped up in the moment and cause an argument. In fact, that argument may be inevitable – and it has the potential to translate to a bigger problem down the line. Don’t neglect your partner’s needs, or your financial responsibilities during this time or you can seriously regret it in the near future.


Scorpio (October 23 – November 22)

Scorpio, this month is going to be thrilling for you. There will be plenty of opportunities for new sexual escapades, so you shouldn’t ignore these chances. You will have a great deal of charisma working for you this month, and the sexual power will flow through you better than ever.

Committed Scorpio lovers, your partner will surprise you with an increase in passion. Don’t let your jealousy ruin this extra love right now. Your partner deserves the same love they are giving to you. Especially toward the end of the month, your temper may be short, and you will have to control yourself to ensure you don’t make any silly mistakes.


Sagittarius (November 22 – December 22)

This month is a great time to sweep your lover off her feet with a romantic getaway. It doesn’t matter if you’re whisking her off to a tropical beach or simply visiting the local farm for some apple picking and pumpkin carving. Go shopping for some new clothes and buy those tickets!

For single Sagittarius ladies, this month invites you to take a new date to somewhere you’ve never been. You should try to travel as much as possible, and try new things. Splurge on something you’ve been eyeing for awhile, and take that new date to the restaurant you’ve been dying to try. Consider taking her on a road trip – the alignment of the planets this month almost guarantees that your rendezvous will result in a satisfying sexual experience before the end of the month.


Capricorn (December 22 – January 20)

Single Capricorns should avoid dating any new partners at the beginning of the month, as Saturn has an uneasy alliance with Uranus for a good portion of the month. This can cause some problems in a new relationship, and it’s likely to factor into your love and sex life for the month. It should clear up around the 22nd.

If you’re already in an established relationship, however, you can use this time to deepen your bond with your partner. Watch an old movie or read a book together, and ensure that you are there for each other during this time. Make sure you are guarding against depression as emotions are likely to fluctuate throughout the month.


Aquarius (January 20 – February 18)

The month of October is a great time for Aquarius to meet new people, as there will be plenty of parties (which you love!) and dating will be an adventure. The last week would be a great time to invite that special new person in your life to a fun party – whether it’s planned by a friend or by you yourself.
For my lovers, use this time to get into the Halloween spirit with your loved one. Pick out fun and sexy costumes for each other, unpack the decorations, and get to planning the perfect witchy bash for the spookiest night of the year. This social energy will translate to a charge in your sexual chemistry, and your sex life is bound to see a spike this month.


Pisces (February 18 – March 20)

Love and sex are on the up-and-up for you this month. Your anxieties will begin to fade away, which will allow you to connect with someone special towards the end of the month. If your anxiety hasn’t melted away completely yet, don’t worry – push yourself past it and the right person will come find you.
Fish in a committed relationship should take care that they are not overspending this month, as there are plenty of romantic activities you can do with your partner for much cheaper that will still allow you to harness the sexual energy building this month. Go for a walk and hold hands, roll around in some fallen leaves together, or share a bucket of popcorn at the movies – and then enjoy the sexual spark when you return home.

See the hyper homoerotic film that made Harris Dickinson a sex symbol / Queerty

See the hyper homoerotic film that made Harris Dickinson a

Beach Rats

Welcome to Screen Gems, our weekend dive into queer and queer-adjacent titles of the past that deserve a watch or a rewatch.

The Sweaty: Beach Rats

Harris Dickinson made a splash with his debut performance in Beach Rats, the darling of the 2017 film festival circuit. Given that he spends the movie half-naked, it’s not hard to see why.

Beach Rats follows the life of Frankie (Dickinson), a beach-loving bodybuilder that enjoys hanging with his other shirtless buds, going on dates with his girlfriend while secretly meeting up with other men for sex and drugs. For Frankie, the double life allows him to compartmentalize his own attraction to men; in essence, he can lie to himself. As his thirst for sex and drugs grows ever stronger, though, Frankie’s dual identity becomes harder and harder to mask, and threatens to upend his carefully cultivated image.

Writer/director Eliza Hittman approaches Beach Rats with a near-voyeuristic style; we often feel like a fly on the wall watching Frankie on his quest for sex. The film also has a surreal quality about it. At times, Hittman floods us with dreamlike images that reflect Frankie’s own flood of emotions. Elusive, sensual, and erotic, we recommend Beach Rats for the story.

The shirtless boys are just an added bonus.

Streams on Amazon, Hulu, YouTube, iTunes and VUDU.

(Another) history of gay sex, told in convenient movie form / Queerty

(Another) history of gay sex, told in convenient movie form

Gay Sex in the 70s

Welcome to Screen Gems, Welcome to Screen Gems, our weekend dive into queer and queer-adjacent titles of the past that deserve a watch or a rewatch.our weekend dive into queer and queer-adjacent titles of the past that deserve a watch or a rewatch.

The Eye-Opener: Gay Sex in the 70s

For most of us, the 1970s represents an idyllic age, a time after Stonewall granted LGBTQ people more visibility and freedom before the scourge of AIDS brought it all crashing down. Gay Sex in the 70s, the explicit documentary by director Joseph Lovett, eulogizes and defies the period, and the explosion of gay sex that came along with it. Featuring interviews with writer Larry Kramer, photo Tom Bianchi, animator Robert Alvarez, and more, the film reconstructs the era when queer culture thrived around bars, clubs and bathhouses, and an attitude of sexual freedom not seen since. For most of us, it’s the closest we will ever get to the real thing.

Nostalgic, sexy and frank, Gay Sex in the 70s offers up a crash course in a chapter of LGBTQ history, and one told in rare detail. We recommend it to anyone that has ever danced to disco…and because we always recommend gay sex to anyone.

Streams on iTunes & VIMEO.

 

John Voight is a sex worker on the make. But is he gay? / Queerty

John Voight is a sex worker on the make. But

Welcome to Screen Gems, Welcome to Screen Gems, our weekend dive into queer and queer-adjacent titles of the past that deserve a watch or a rewatch.our weekend dive into queer and queer-adjacent titles of the past that deserve a watch or a rewatch.

The Debatable: Midnight Cowboy

Director John Schlesinger came out to the world (well, kinda) with this gritty drama about New York street hustlers dreaming of a better life. Some critics have hailed Midnight Cowboy as a seminal queer classic. Others have labeled it one of the most homophobic movies ever made.

The story finds the naive Texan Joe Buck (John Voight) arriving in New York City to live the high life…as a low rent male prostitute. Upon arrival, he crosses paths with the ragged street man Ratso (Dustin Hoffman) who first cons him before offering to act as an advisor and surrogate pimp. A strange bond develops between the pair as they begin to dream of a life outside the city in the idyllic tropics of Maimi.

Midnight Cowboy remains the only X-Rated movie to win the Oscar for Best Picture. Schlesinger, likewise, took home the trophy for Best Director. Contemporary critics read the film as a gay romance, and Schlesinger unquestionably views Joe and Ratso through a queer lens. That said, modern appraisal of the film both lauds it for its portrayal of a same-sex relationship (albeit a chaste one) and deride it as a homophobic nightmare. In all honesty, we can see it both ways: Joe and Ratso do have an odd devotion to one another, and Joe does seem to take easily to servicing male clients. On the other hand, the Joe/Ratso coupling has all the hallmarks of a dysfunctional relationship, and flashback scenes of Joe getting raped could imply that he isn’t gay; rather, he’s trying to cope with sexual trauma.

In any case, we recommend Midnight Cowboy both as a historical artifact, and as a controversy which invites debate. Where do you fall in the appraisal? Watch and find out.

Streams on Amazon, YouTube, VUDU and iTunes.

Let’s talk about ‘g0ys,’ gay men who are so opposed to anal sex that they’ve created a little club / Queerty

Let’s talk about ‘g0ys,’ gay men who are so opposed

What is a g0y?

According to Urban Dictionary, it’s “a guy who finds men attractive, but for whatever reason is offended by the stigmas that currently define the ‘gay community’ in the public psyche.”

G0ys shun effeminate behavior because they thinks it’s “cowardly.” They also refrain from calling one another things like “girl”, “bitch”, or “queen.” But their biggest hangup is anal sex. They don’t believe in it because they think it’s a “violent act” that represents “the ultimate form of sexual disrespect.”

The website g0ys.org, which labels itself “Ground ZER0 in the ‘UNgay’ Paradigm Shift!,” calls the whole g0y movement “an explosively popular awakening among men in general – sweeping the globe.”

The site explains:

Our well reasoned positions regarding basic, male sexuality have taken to task both: religious “fundamentalists”, -and- the “liberal gay leftists”.  G0YS are among the healthiest men of any demographic on the planet, & sexually transmitted diseases are a virtual non-issue. How can this be? G0YS, by our very nature, reject ALL anal-fetish related acts! And, we strongly discourage physical intimacy with others who reject our mindset.  This mental trait lowers our risk of perilous sexually transmitted diseases by: 1,250,000% (vs. the men who call themselves “gay”)!

Don’t ask us where they got that figure.

The word “g0y” purportedly comes from ancient Hebrew and is spelled with a zero instead of the letter “o” for a few reasons. First, the g0ys say, it is to create a “departure from stereotype.”

G0ys.org explains, “A term was needed that had some meaning behind it, while being simple enough for people to remember; — plus stir some curiosity.”

Also, they don’t like the letter “a” because that’s the first letter in the word “anal” and they really. don’t. like. anal.

“The term needed to confront sloppy theology that supports “everything gAy” — including Anal,” g0ys.org says. “G0YS reject Anal-Sex! It’s dirty, dangerous & damn – disrespectful of masculinity.”

G0ys.org says:

According to the CDC, condoms fail about 2% of the time during analsex.  On a 360 day year, assuming only 1 screw a day, that’s 720 buttphucks (360×2 partners).  720×2%= 14 condom failures. Since it only takes (1) failure to spread a deadly STD/STI, that’s 1300% overkill.  Last time I saw an overkill factor like that it was tied to the nuclear weapons program.  Have 1/14th of a nuclear war & everyone is still dead. Ironic how the penis resembles a missle….

Oh, but it doesn’t stop there.

You see, AnalSex is ALWAYS a VIOLENT ACT. ALWAYS. And did I mention that it’s VIOLENT 100% of the time?  The FACT (say “FACT”) is that the human rectum (whether male or female) is NOT designed to be used as a dick-dock.  Every single occurrence of that act damages the recipient in some fashion as well as creating a conduit for disease that is some +5000% more contagious than even 0ralSex (according to the CDC & World Health 0rganization).  It’s +5000% MORE FUKK’N CONTAGIOUS on top (pun) of ALWAYS being INJURIOUS to the physical structures in the recipient!

How to Figure Out What You Really Want During Sex

How to Figure Out What You Really Want During Sex

Who is your authentic sexual self?

It’s a question rarely posed, and difficult to answer. As a therapist who specializes in holistic sex education and pleasure-focused care, I often find that this is the question many of my clients are desperate to answer. The impact of being in the dark about our sexuality is painfully clear, and also painfully common. Folks who struggle with confusion around sex and sexuality are often also struggling with anxiety, depression, feelings of guilt and shame, feeling isolated or “like a freak,” and, sadly, sometimes also bring histories of trauma into the room. They show up overwhelmed, sad or frustrated, and full of self-blame and self-criticism. Most often, they describe feeling “stuck,” both within their important intimate relationships, and within their relationships with themselves.

As a sex educator and therapist, I truly believe that our embodied experience of sexuality, our connection with our sexual selves, is perhaps one of the central most important ways of being in the world. Now, with so much fear and overwhelm being generated in response to the global pandemic COVID-19, more commonly known as the coronavirus, as well as the biological stress that accompanies very necessary harm reduction methods like social distancing and quarantine, discovering and cultivating our own unique experiences of pleasure is more important than ever. Pleasure, eroticism, and the balm of being authentically who we are is healing; it soothes our nervous systems, decreases our stress levels, and ultimate keeps us healthier.

This is all true regardless of orientation (and, I want to note here, also includes experiences on the asexual spectrum, since asexuality is as valid an experience of sexuality as any other). When we don’t understand this aspect of ourselves, we feel blocked. It becomes difficult to come into contact with our source of erotic and creative energy, life force energy which sex and relationship expert Esther Perel calls the “antidote to death.” An authentic and embodied connection to our sexual selves is crucial to our well-being, particularly in this moment in time within disaster capitalism, where all the power structures that organize our society force us to relate to ourselves as workers whose job it is to produce, rather than as human beings whose calling it is to play, to love, to care, to feel, and to create.

It’s not surprising to me that many of my clients come to therapy seeking help understanding their sexual identities and relationship styles. This goes double for my queer clients, the demographic that makes up the majority of my practice. One of the first things I learned when I started my study of sex education, after all, was just how abysmal the state of sex education is in the United States, with only 39 of all 50 states and the District of Columbia requiring sex ed and HIV education to be taught in schools, and only 17 states requiring that the information, if provided, be “medically, technically, and factually accurate.” Only 3 states prohibit sex ed programming from promoting religion, whereas 19 states “require instruction on the importance of engaging in sexual activity only within marriage” (emphasis mine). For queer folks, the state of sex education is often even grimmer, as evident in the fact that even in the year 2020, seven states still require that “only negative information to be provided on homosexuality,” and that heterosexuality be “positively emphasized.”

These requirements have to do with sexuality education’s place within public schools, yet most of the clients I see are at least in their early twenties if not well on their way into adulthood. This, too, is unsurprising, as mainstream sex education seems to consider sexuality as something that just springs upon us during puberty, rather than considering the fact that an erotic engagement with the world is something that all of us experience since birth. The reason for this is multifaceted: sex and sexuality are, of course, still highly taboo, nowhere more so than when considering the topic of sex alongside the topic of childhood. Parents are often uncomfortable discussing sex with their children, and are very rarely given the tools and education required to do so in a way that not only prepares them to impart accurate and age appropriate information to their kids, but also guides them through the discomfort of unlearning the harmful messages they’ve internalized from their own childhoods.

The fact that most sex education occurs in public schools present another facet to the taboo: In order for teachers to feel safe enough to discuss such a highly stigmatized topic and keep their jobs, they of course have to operate within the requirements set forth by their individual districts and states. Curricula is often limited to abstinence and pregnancy prevention and information about STIs; if students are very, very lucky, they’ll have lessons that include the topic of consent outside of the overly simplistic standard of “No means no.” But too rarely is any space given to some of the most important aspects of sex education outside of the umbrella of mere safety: the nuances of consent, embodiments of gender and sexuality that diverge from compulsive cisheteronormativity, non-normative relationship styles, and pleasure.

All of which are, of course, aspects that feed into a person’s understanding of their authentic sexual self.

Sex educators online have heroically filled the gaps where mainstream sex education has fallen short. And, of course, guides to uncovering your own authentic sexuality abound in articles, books, podcasts, and coaching courses. These resources often suggest creating an intentional masturbation practice, or spending time getting to know your own unique fantasies, or even challenging yourself to watch porn for inspiration. (Pay for your porn if this is the route you take! You’ll be doing the ethical thing by sex workers, and will be getting better quality porn for your trouble in the meantime!)

But the road to authentic sexuality is as unique as the person seeking it, and there is no one size fits all method. Similarly, even the most well meaning suggestions and advice folks find online is often several steps ahead of where they’re at in terms of what they’re willing to try. If that sounds familiar, here are some things to keep in mind.

Sexual Subjectivity

Where did you first learn to be “good,” or what behaviors or desire made you “bad” (and how are these delineations related to pleasure)? Where, or how frequently, do the “should” statements pop up in your life, and what happens when they do?

What does it mean to ask someone “Who is your authentic sexual self?” When working with clients, one of the places I start involves listening for the stories people tell – and listening to the unspoken stories they’ve internalized. They’re simple, but quite subtle, and often have to do with being good (and thus socially accepted and safe) or bad (and thus socially ostracized and in danger).

When, with some gentle prompting, clients begin to bring their attention to some of these things, it’s often transformative. In sex education terms, part of what we’re talking about is the idea of sexual subjectivity, or who you are as a sexual subject. For folks of marginalized gender identities, often we’re taught to relate to ourselves as objects rather than subjects; things to be acted on rather than protagonists with agency at the center of our own narratives; performers for others’ pleasure rather than people capable of experiencing and pursuing immense pleasure of our own. Sexual subjectivity is your own unique sense of sexual selfhood, and it is a key component of uncovering your authentic sexuality.

Because we’re social creatures, our idea of self is created in the context of relationships; relationships with other people, certainly, but also with the structures and social forces that inform our identities and the relationships we have. This is why, as sex educator and sex ed business coach Cameron Glover notes, “It’s not comprehensive sex ed without racial justice education.” Racism, misogyny, ableism, fatphobia… all of these are hurdles to navigate in the journey towards a more authentic sexual self. The specific ways these hurdles inform the stories we tell about our lives, of course, depends on who we are and how we experience the world.

For example, sex educator, writer, and bisexual superhero Gabrielle Alexa described one impact of biphobia on bisexual sexual subjectivity thus: “We have to go so much harder to prove that we belong and that we’re authentic, so we often minimize the different-sex aspect of our attractions and behaviors. It definitely means that we’re influenced to perform queerness a little bit louder than we might otherwise, which requires code-switching because it also puts us at risk [of violence]. And of course, a large part of bi+ identity when you’re perceived as a woman is viewed as performing for the male gaze.”

When asked how this has influenced her life personally, she said, “I feel like I have to perform PDA twice as much or my bisexuality will be doubted – but if I’m too enthusiastic or I’ve chosen the wrong space, it can lead to rejection or violence. Bi+ folks therefore have to sacrifice safety for visibility, or vice versa, or find a middle-ground between the two, when considering how we want to express ourselves.”

HOMEWORK

We keep ourselves hemmed in for so much of the time, in an effort to be “good” and avoid shame. But avoidance of shame is not pleasure or authentic joy; it’s stagnation, anxiety, and spinning your wheels – often in the service of the oppressive structures that got you there in the first place. For one week, practice paying attention to moments in your life when you notice your “shoulds” popping up. You can scribble them down in a journal, just a sentence or two, or make note of them on your phone. What decisions do you make around how you “should” be and things you “should” do? How do you feel?

Just notice – you don’t necessarily have to change anything yet, if it feels safer to listen to the “should” voice. And in working with clients around sexuality and authenticity, since those topics are so charged, I’m also quick to remind them that we start out small, so you don’t even need to be focusing purely on sexual “shoulds.” But in those moments, allow yourself to imagine other alternatives, the things you want (and the feelings associated with them), rather than the things you “should” do.

Creativity, Curiosity, and Play

What messages did we receive about sex and pleasure from the time before we were consciously sexual beings capable of experiencing what we now recognize as desire? And are we still allowing these messages to influence how we show up in our sexuality today?

In an ideal world, all of us would have been encouraged to develop our sense of autonomous erotic selfhood from the time we were children. To be clear, this does not mean that children should be encouraged to have sex, or that it’s not of utmost importance to educate children about their bodies, sex, and sexuality in a safe and age appropriate way. But our fear of even having conversations about sex and childhood, and the continued taboo around sexuality, along with entrenched systems of oppression under capitalism, is part of what creates such a sexually dangerous environment for children and young people in the first place.

And yet – children are more naturally in touch with the erotic world than adults are by a mile. (This is perhaps one reason why our culture encourages parenting that deprives them of their autonomy in the name of supposed safety.) In her famous essay “The Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power” Audre Lorde describes the erotic as “a resource within each of us that lies in a deeply female and spiritual plane, firmly rooted in the power of our unexpressed or unrecognized feeling.” Systems of oppression, she writes, must, in order to continue and maintain themselves, “must corrupt or distort those various sources of power within the culture of the oppressed that can provide energy for change.”

To Lorde, the erotic was not only about sex, and in fact, the conflation and relegation of eroticism solely to the realm of sexuality was part of what retracted from its true power: the power of creativity, curiosity, and play. This was, of course, a direct result of capitalism: “The principal horror of any system which defines the good in terms of profit rather than in terms of human need, or which defines human need to the exclusion of the psychic and emotional components of that need—the principal horror of such a system is that it robs our work of its erotic value, its erotic power and life appeal and fulfillment.”

Clients often come to me looking to “solve” the problem of their sexuality, a limiting and judgmental mindset in and of itself, though an understandable one. We live in a world where we’re supposed to have it all – a great, fun, well-paying job, a loving intimate relationship (but with ONE person, usually someone of the so-called “opposite” gender), a wild gaggle of friends who you spend every weekend with (while somehow still having time for your partner), several degrees and babies (somehow simultaneously), and multiple simultaneous orgasms every single day – within circumstances that leave most of us almost nothing to work with in any sustainable way. And we’re supposed to do all of that in front of our legions of followers on social media, because pics or it didn’t happen, right?

But our sexualities are not something to solve, and our lives are not just a series of images we’re creating for validation from friends and strangers. Authentic sexuality is about experiencing and embodiment, and being attuned to what that means for you, specifically, is powerful. It’s a powerful unlearning of what we’re all taught we’re supposed to be, and how we should behave if we want to be deemed “good.”

HOMEWORK

Think of the way a baby eats: food smeared all over their face and hands, flecks of raspberry and mango everywhere, unworried about stains on clothing or making a facial expression that might offend. Think of the way a toddler interacts with the world when they are somewhere they feel safe: no toy box left unturned, loudly and with abandon, fearless, shameless. What would it be like to imagine these attitudes for yourself as you begin your excavation of your authentic sexual self? In what small ways could you practice childlike wonder and newness?

Remembering Adolescent Desire

Who were you when you were a teenager? What did you interact with that set your whole spirit on fire? What stirred your curiosity and left you lying awake at three in the morning with your whole body humming? What made you cry into your pillow or rage at your parents or sneak out of the window at night?

As mentioned above, typically we think of sexuality as starting somewhere around puberty. Most discussions of sexuality before that point have to do with determining what is “normal” and what is “problematic.” A quick Google search of “childhood sexuality” will show you article after article listing how to assess your child’s behavior for signs of sexual abuse, or instruct you in how to “shape and manage” your child’s behavior. While it’s certainly important to know how to keep children safe from abuse, the tenor of information reads dishearteningly more like scare tactics than education – much like mainstream sex ed itself.

The tension between normal and not only continues once puberty hits, though by then, we’re also doing it to ourselves. When I think back to what puberty was like for me in terms of sex and sexuality, the word that comes immediately to mind is stressful. I was very afraid, a lot of the time, that something was deeply wrong with me. More than anything else, I just wanted to belong, to fit in, and to be like everybody else (while also, of course, being known for being exactly who I was).

But my private desires, my fantasies, were my own, and not anyone else’s, and returning to that time and time again is what has helped me uncover my own sexual authenticity.

Teens, like children, are often wild with creativity, a key feature of the erotic. Teens write zines, poetry, fan fiction. They make art. They make music. They sing, they perform, they choreograph dances that take the nation by storm. Does anything in your life move you in quite the same way now, even the smallest hint of it? Find those corners, those edges, those threads, and pull.

HOMEWORK

Reflect on your first experiences of fantasy. One of the brilliant things about being an adolescent is we interact with sexuality for the first time in almost a more pure and physically charged way. Part of that is just puberty (hormones on parade!) and where we’re at developmentally, struggling to carve our own sense of who we are while still navigating the tension of our desperate need for the approval and solidarity of our peers. We interact with sexuality before we learn more explicitly some of the “shoulds” of sex – what’s “problematic,” what’s “normal,” what might make us “freaks” for wanting it, thinking of it, getting turned on by it. But the beauty of fantasy is that there’s no wrong way to do it, and you can’t harm anyone by indulging privately in your imagination. Take some time to think back to your first experiences of being turned on. What were your drawn to? What would it be like to playfully indulge in those fantasies once again? What feelings come up? How does your body respond?

Holding Space for Trauma

It is impossible to write about sex at all without writing about trauma. Uncovering your authentic sexuality is a healing process, and if we’re healing, by necessity, of course there is harm from which we must heal. All of my clients are healing from trauma in some way, shape, or form, some to greater degrees, others, lesser. The sex negative and purity-obsessed culture we all grew up in is traumatizing. As always, I recommend support from a caring and informed professional through this process, if it’s available for you, especially around trauma.

The world we live in – organized by white supremacist, cisheternormative, ableist, fatphobic, whorephobic, sex negative capitalism – is also inherently traumatic. Many of us have experienced interpersonal acts of violation and betrayal on top of that. In the words of Dr. Jennifer Mullan of @decolonizingtherapy, “I heal in parts – because systematic dis-ease took me apart.”

It’s okay to go slow. It’s go to commit to this process in fits and starts. It’s okay to doubt yourself, to be afraid, to phone it in, to disconnect if you have to. It’s okay if the idea of childlike wonder is a foreign concept to you, or that even thinking about thinking about your adolescence is too uncomfortable, or painful, bear. There is no timeframe to adhere to. There is no race, no goal, no comparison to make. Your authentic sexual self is waiting for you, whenever you’re ready. Your authentic sexual self may show up unexpectedly, too, shining into your life here and there when you least expect it. Your authentic sexual self has been there all along, buried deep beneath the bullshit, but still there. You are here to be curious and creative, no matter what you have experienced. You are here for pleasure and joy.

California governor Gavin Newsom ends anti-LGBT sex offence disparity

California governor Gavin Newsom ends anti-LGBT sex offence disparity

The governor of California Gavin Newsom has signed a bill that eliminates a disparity in sex offence laws treating LGBT+ people more harshly, despite attacks from the far-right, Donald Trump Jr and Ted Cruz.

In a low-key announcement on Friday (September 11) amid the wildfire emergency in the state, Newsom’s office confirmed he had signed SB 145 — one week after the state legislature approved the bill, penned gay Democratic lawmaker Scott Wiener.

Wiener was threatened with “public execution” after far-right conspiracy theorists latched onto the legislation, which closes a loophole in California’s sexual offence laws.

Under existing state law it is a crime to have sex with someone under the age of 18, but judges have a discretionary power to keep teenagers off the sex offenders’ register for having sex with someone of a similar age, such as a 17-year-old and an 18-year-old.

However, the powers only apply to “penile-vaginal intercourse”, which means that LGBT+ teens are liable to be added to the sex offenders’ registry for having consensual sex, where straight teens are not.

Far-right activists had launched baseless attacks on sex offence law

Wiener’s bill to fix the issue by applying the law evenly has led to him being smeared a a “paedophile” by followers of QAnon – the far-reaching but unfounded conspiracy theory that, among other things, claims Donald Trump is at war with an elite, international ring of Satan-worshipping child sex traffickers.

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed the bill on Friday
California Governor Gavin Newsom signed the bill on Friday (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The attacks stemming from the conspiracist far-right were also elevated by leading Republicans, with Senator Ted Cruz, Donald Trump Jr and shock jock Rush Limbaugh all perpetuating falsehoods relating to the law.

Cruz claimed: “Priorities. Today’s CA Dems believe we need more adults having sex with children, and when they do, they shouldn’t register as sex offenders.”

Meanwhile, Trump Jr raged: “Why are Joe Biden Democrats working in California to pander to the wishes of pedophiles and child rapists? New California bill would lower penalties for adults who have sexual relations with a minor”.

Departing from both the truth and any plane of reality where truth exists as an objective construct, Rush Limbaugh opted to claim to his listeners: “Paedophilia is now legal in California. Now a 21 year old can have sex with an 11 year old, and not be listed on the sex registry as a sex offender.”

Fact-checkers have been working overtime to point out that nearly all of the viral claims spreading about the law are false – though social media giants Twitter and Facebook have done little to counter the spread of the falsehoods.

LGBT+ activists celebrate California governor’s decision to ignore hateful ‘misinformation campaign’

Celebrating the decision to sign it, Senator Scott Wiener said in a statement: “It’s appalling that in 2020, California continues to discriminate against LGBTQ people, by mandating that LGBTQ young people be placed on the sex offender registry in situations where straight people aren’t required to be placed on the registry.

“SB 145 simply ends that discrimination by treating LGBTQ young people the exact same way that straight young people have been treated since 1944.

“I am so grateful that Governor Newsom — one of the LGBTQ community’s strongest allies ever — once again has shown that he gets it and that he’s willing to support our community even when it’s hard.

“And the politics here are hard, with the massive Trump/QAnon/MAGA misinformation campaign against the legislation. The facts are clear: SB 145 simply ends anti-LGBTQ discrimination. Today, California took yet another step toward an equitable society.”

Democratic state senator Scott Wiener
Democratic state senator Scott Wiener

Equality California’s executive director Rick Chavez Zbur said: “We are incredibly grateful to Governor Newsom for his unyielding commitment to LGBTQ+ civil rights and social justice.

“Dr King said, ‘The time is always right to do what is right.’ Signing SB 145 was the right thing to do.

“It was the right thing to do for LGBTQ+ young people, it was the right thing to do to keep our communities safe and it was the right thing to do for California.

“If we want a California for all, then we need a justice system that treats all Californians fairly and equally — regardless of who they are, what they look like or whom they love. That goal is at the core of SB 145.

“Thanks to Governor Newsom and Senator Wiener, California is one step closer to living up to our shared values of fairness, equality and justice for all.”

8 Sex Toys Perfect for Temperature Play

8 Sex Toys Perfect for Temperature Play

Sponsored by Eve’s Toys

As the hottest, haziest days of summer roll through the northern hemisphere, your AC may already be struggling to keep up with your sex drive. Whether you’re getting sweaty solo or have a partner in quarantine you can’t keep your hands off no matter how hot it gets, it’s a good time to bring some cool sensations to the hottest and heaviest parts of your life. That’s why all the toys highlighted here are perfect for temperature play, for a variety of types of sensations and bods. Never tried temperature play before? It’s easy, safe, and can be supremely sexy; with some sweet sweet discounts throughout this post, there’s never been a better time to try bringing some chill into the bedroom.

Visit Eve’s Toys and enter code AUTO at checkout for 50% off one item & free shipping on orders over $20 in the US. (Note: Some items are only eligible for free shipping and a partial discount. These items are noted in the post.) 100% satisfaction guarantee.


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A clear transparent glass dildo with a bulb on one end and a slight hook at the other

If you love G-spot stimulation and have always been curious about glass toys, the Fantasy G is a beautiful place to start — the angled tip is perfect for the G-spot sensations of your dreams, and the smooth, beautifully weighted feel of glass makes it that much better. One of the most exciting and indescribable feelings of glass is feeling it heat up along with you or your activity partner’s bod, and what an affordable and gorgeous way to experience it!

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A stainless steel dildo curved in a slight S shape with a large round bulb on one end and three graduated bulbs in a row on the other

You may have heard us wax rhapsodic about the nJoy Pure Wand before, and for good reason; our reviewer noted that it gave them “the longest most mind blowing orgasm I can remember,” and “I would probably pay double. Or triple. Actually, it’s hard to say just how much I would pay to keep having my world rocked.” It was definitely on our fan favorite shopping guide, as well as our guide to the all-time best sex queer sex toys, duh. But you may know less about its cousin, the Fun Wand! It has the same perfect weight and curve for G- or P-spot stimulation as the Pure Wand, as well as three graduated bulbs to double triple your pleasure. Toss it in the freezer or a bowl of icewater for a deliciously cool pick-me-up!

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A straight blue glass dildo with a tapered tip on one end and a rounded bulb on the other

The best and worst thing about dildos is finding the perfect shape — for you, for your partner, for Tuesdays, for that one position where she hangs off the edge of the bed; it goes on. The Chrystalino offers two different bulbous ends; one gently tapered, and one more spherical, with a straight rigid body to let you angle it however you please while it functions as either a wand or anal plug. Oh, and it’s made of shatter-resistant borosilicate glass that will give you all the body-safe temperature play your heart could desire for years to come.

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A glass dildo with a slight curve in the shaft and a rounded bulb on the end; a thin line of glass spirals around the outside of the shaft.

If you’ve ever enjoyed the sensation of ribbed condoms, I have great news for you about the Twisted Crystal dildo; the swirling glass textures combined with the generously shaped tip mean you can feel things you’ve only dreamed of; dip the bodysafe borosilicate glass into some cooled (or warmed!) water for a temperature shift and this gently curved gem can send you right back to the Garden of Eden (get it?).

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Three bottles of Uberlube, a translucent liquid in a clear glass container with a pump top

A prince(ss) among lubes, Uberlube is reliable, silky, long-lasting, and perfect in almost every way: the fact that it’s silicone-based means it can’t be used in direct contact with silicone toys or prosthetics. But hark, a veritable midsummer night’s dream: all the toys recommended here for temp play are borosilicate or stainless steel (minus the Scarlet Couture balls below), and an absolute dream to use with Uberlube; you’re free and clear to slip ‘n slide the night away. While you’re at the freezer, pop the bottle of lube in there for a few minutes, too, for a delightfully shivery sensation later. And if you wake the next morning with some record-breaking high-humidity sex hair, our NSFW consultant Carolyn loves to remind folks that Uberlube makes a great makeshift hair product for smoothing out flyaways.

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People who always wanted septum piercings but instead bought a removable one they could take on and off before seeing their parents for the weekend and ALSO love nipple stimulation will want to run not walk to grab these nipple rings! Totally removable, they can be worn to titillate you or a partner, to bring in some light nipple sensation during other play, AND can be popped in the freezer or warm water to bring the heat up or down in the bedroom.

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A shining stainless steel butt plug, with a wide looped handle on the end and a tapered bulb for insertion

One could argue that there is no more perfect plug, full stop, than this nJoy; certainly our reviewer felt this way, and said that the Pure Plug made them sound like “one of those people just discovering their clits for the first time.” If the smooth, sensual weight of stainless steel already does it for you, you’ll probably also love being thrilled & chilled by adding some temperature play to the mix.

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A pair of opaque glass balls nestled one next to the other in a silicone housing, which includes a loop at the end for removal.

When Cardi said “I do a kegel when it’s inside,” she wasn’t talking about these insertable glass spheres in a smooth silicone harness designed for kegel stimulation, but you could be! These can be used throughout the day for a sexy slow burn of engaging your Kegel muscles, and the glass spheres offer lots of options for temperature sensations, from warming to help address any soreness to tossing them in the freezer for “a playful shock to the system.”

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Visit Eve’s Toys and enter code AUTO at checkout for 50% off one item & free shipping on orders over $20 in the US. (Note: Some items are only eligible for free shipping and a partial discount. These items are noted in the post.) 100% satisfaction guarantee.