Oral Hygiene Queen

My Photo
Location: Midwest, United States

I floss daily, brush after every meal, and trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries.

RSS Feed

Sunday, July 23, 2006

P-Town Confidential

I promised I would not keep any secrets about my wild week in Provincetown, but nothing too juicy occurred. The only really exciting thing that happened was when my Old Man, O, and I were held up at riding-crop point by a gang of wild-eyed leather boys in tight black chaps demanding we hand over all our sex toys. We'd left our dildos and butt plugs back at the inn, so we had nothing to offer. They tied me and the Old Man to a quaint, rough hewn driftwood fence using studded leather restraints, and they were ready to start baring and whipping our asses right in front of O. when the clever little tyke piped up and offered them his sippy cup. They looked at its sleek design, its sloped, blunt-ended cover, and its whimsical images of suggestively smiling trucks, decided it was good enough, and set us free. We breathed a huge sigh of relief as we watched their taut and well-tanned asscheeks striding off down the narrow street.

And then I woke up from my daydream, drool festooning my chin, as the Old Man approached me with my ice cream cone. In reality, it was a chill week hanging out in the hottest gay vacation spot in Massachusetts. Provincetown is to Boston as Fire Island is to NYC, and it's quite fun to enjoy sea, sun, and haute cuisine with hoards of happy, proudly out gay and lesbian singles and couples strutting their stuff in a tiny, centuries-old seaside village.

This was our family's second visit to P-town, and like last time, it was mostly positive. I appreciate being in a place where gay folks are out, comfortable, and safe -- I wish it were that way everywhere. I'm glad to have my kid see boys and boys holding hands and girls and girls smooching. It's great to witness two cute women hugging and nuzzling and, when I make eye contact and smile as I pass by, have them smile back uncomplicatedly. There's an assumption in Provincetown that you're either gay or you're cool with people being gay. It feels good.

It's also interesting being the minority for a change. I admit I feel a little less inclined to hold my Old Man's hand as we're strolling in Provincetown. And that's okay. But there's also sometimes a look that me, the Old Man, and our beautiful little spawn get as we're walking around, especially in the primarily-gay East end, where we stay. We get it more from gay men than from lesbians. Sometimes it seems a bit cold. Sometimes it borders on hostile. In a way, I can understand it. But I also find it saddening.

(The Old Man and I actually have a running debate with ourselves whether the cold look arises from our being a band of straight breeders, or whether it's more about the fact that we're scruffy lower-middle-class riff-raff. Provincetown is a pricey place overrun with artsy rich folk, and we could never afford to spend a week there without my grant to study at the arts center. But I think it's more the straight-couple-with-kid-in-tow thing.)

One afternoon, after I'd been in my poetry workshop all morning, the Old Man said "Maybe we've been misreading the vibe around the neighborhood -- O. and I were getting a lot of smiles and small talk from gay men as we walked around today." I observed that without me there, the Old Man would come across as neutral, possibly a gay dad, and certainly not necessarily a straight one. This led us to talk more about the reception the three of us often get in the East end of P-town. I took the perspective that it made sense in a certain way: I could see why people who might get hostile looks from straight people would react coldly to straight people running around in their gay vacation haven. Maybe we were just killing their buzz, and I found it hard to really fault them. The Old Man objected. Wasn't the very fact that we were staying in Provincetown evidence that we weren't homophobic jerks? And shouldn't it be heartening that we were bringing our kid to an actively pro-gay community? Wouldn't a state supreme court judge considering, say, a gay marriage case be more likely to make a gay-friendly ruling if he or she had grown up seeing gay people just living life, expressing affection openly? That judge (or that pro-gay teacher or that self-accepting gay adult) could be O.

Though we never reached a conclusion on that debate, we did have some decidedly positive experiences with gay men, as well. Gay couples are much more likely to smile upon our cute little boy if he's fawning over their cute little dog. Or, of course, if they have a cute little young'un of their own.

I myself had a positive (and not imaginary) experience with a friendly leather boy in tight black chaps (and a black leather motorcycle cap and studded black chest harness) when I stopped by M.G. Leather to pick up a BDSM postcard to send to Feral Mom. (Disappointingly, they had no raunchy postcards, but I did get a nice, basic pride postcard. And now that we're already back from our trip, I'll get it in the mail soon, I promise.) Here's how it went:

Leather Boy: (smiling brightly, with a twinkle in his eye) Find everything you were looking for?
Me: (Staring openly at the spiked cock rings and alarmingly ginormous veined dildos behind the counter) Huh? Oh, yes!
LB: (Humming along with Sade's "Smooth Operator" as he rings me up.) That'll be one dollar and thirty cents.
Me: (Unable to believe I'm getting such a bargain. I'm buying several postcards! And this is Provincetown!) Oh! (Handing over exact change.) Here you go.
LB: Now, if you ever need anything, you be sure to look us up on the web. (Hands me a postcard featuring one of his leather boy colleagues and the store's web address) We have lots of new items for the ladies!
Me: Thank you! I will!

A heartwarming end to a lovely family vacation. (And, incidentally, my poetry workshop kicked my ass in the best sense of the phrase. But that's a different kind of ass-whipping.)

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Heh Heh... I said Pee Town

I'm taking my pasty-white ass, my beautiful son, and my sweet Old Man and heading up to the tippy-tip of Cape Cod for a week of beach-going and poem-writing in Provincetown, Mass. Mornings I'll spend in a poetry workshop and afternoons I'll spend on the beach lounging and swimming and trying not to get a sunburn. If I'm lucky, I'll come home as pale as I currently am.

E. and O. beaching

So, I'll see you in a week. In Vegas fashion, visitors to Provincetown like to say "What happens in P-town stays in P-town," but I promise if anything really good happens, I'll tell all.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Nude Beach and More

Two weeks into our month-long stint with the Jersey Shore in-laws, much fun is being had. The crowded house is creating various opportunities for spontaneous bonding and geeky family fun. Impromptu sessions of Mad Libs involving four generations occur (my husband's Grandmother, classy and still beautiful at the age of 85, offers the verb "glide." Her great-grandson O. offers the adjective "crappy.") After seeing Orange and her cohorts in Wordplay, the Old Man and I are doing the New York Times crossword daily, usually with invaluable bits of help from his parents and sister. My goofy-sweet in-house sister-in-law is busy planning my high-strung Brooklyn sister-in-law's impending tea-themed bridal shower, and I am busy trying to make as many inappropriate suggestions for said shower as possible. (Can we have a tattoo artist mark us all indelibly with the names of the bride and groom? Expand the theme to Tea and Tats? How about a wet t-shirt contest? Of course, that would make it Tea and Tits.) My mother-in-law is taking these clearly facetious yet disturbingly insistent suggestions with admirable aplomb.

We are also getting in lots of beach days, which helps greatly at keeping up morale. We've had a day at Manasquan, the beautiful beach community where my Old Man grew up, and a day at Ocean Grove, a pretty shore town that has maintained the super-cool Victorian houses and hotels along its beachfront. Most of our beach time has been logged at Sandy Hook, a long stretch of shoreline near my in-laws' place. Sandy Hook boasts the only nude beach on the Jersey Shore, and last week we spent an afternoon at that particular beach.

The Old Man and I have had plenty of beach days at Sandy Hook's nude beach, even a couple with his folks along for the ride. It's that kind of nude beach. There's a clothing optional section and a please-keep-your-suit-on section, and everyone coexists peacefully and happily. Even in the nude section, the bare-assed beachgoers tend to be in the minority, with lots of dressed and semi-dressed folks mixed in. I really like the nude beach because it's the freakiest beach I've ever been to on the Atlantic coast. (The Pacific coast is another thing - I lived in Venice Beach for a stint, but that's a different story). Weirdness is the norm, even among folks who aren't baring all, and in general the culture seems to be one of acceptance. It's a beach where the tanned and teenaged hardbody emphatically does not rule. The naked folks on Sandy Hook come in all shapes and sizes, and everyone seems very comfortable with their bodies, however big, small scrawny, flabby, or saggy their various parts may be. (Though sometimes I do find myself hoping the nudists have sunscreen on some of those parts...)

The day we went last week the vibe was a bit different, though. The percentage of nudists was markedly higher, and for some reason the vast majority of them seemed to be men, some of whom were not maintaining what I consider the appropriate me-to-you space ratio at the beach. In other words, when sitting on the beach, I don't really care to be face-to-groin with some strange guy's package. Particularly when it is not, in fact, packaged. There was one incident on the day in question that was particularly discomfiting. Sitting on my own on near the water, I looked over my shoulder at my Old Man and O. playing catch further up the beach. They were just starting back toward me and so a minute later, when I sensed someone coming up behind me, I turned expecting to see my guys. Instead, I saw some strange guy's guys swinging free about ten inches away from me, as in "Hello Mr. Cock and Balls, how do you do?" The man in question walked on and the moment passed, but not without eliciting a shudder from me.

Still, I stand by my assertion that the nude beach is cool. One off-kilter day will not scare me away. I am down with any place that rejects the standard double-edged sword of titillation mixed with puritanical fear of the naked human body so evident in most of American culture. Plus, as a pasty-white woman, I appreciate being in an environment where beach beauty is more broadly defined. And even though I will probably never do it (the very thought of nipple burn!), I like the idea that if I ever got the urge, I could strip down to my altogether and frolic in sand, sea, and sun.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Satan's Party Dip

A few days before our big trip out East, we drove up to the Chicago suburbs to attend to my cousin's college graduation party. In preparation for the party, I went with Cuz to get the ingredients for a dip she wanted to make, a dip she called, simply, "beer dip." I followed her through the isles of the Jewel, horrified, as I watched her chuck the ingredients for this dip into our cart: a 24 oz. can of Miller Lite, six (count 'em: six) cartons of Philadelphia cream cheese, a bag of pre-grated mild cheddar cheese, a packet of ranch dressing powder, and a couple bags of barrel-shaped pretzels to dip into the dip. I was afraid.

We got back to her house and she mixed the ingredients together. I watched as the beer bubbled and sizzled amid the coagulating cream cheese. I knew I would not have any of this dip. I vowed I would not. The addition of the bright orange shredded cheese and the dusty packet of ranch powder did nothing to weaken my resolve.

But when Cuz had stirred in just the right amount of Miller Lite to the cream cheese concoction to feel the dip was perfect, she turned to me and asked me to try it and give her my opinion. Okay, I would have one pretzel-tip of dip, just to assist my cousin on the day of her party.

I picked up the pretzel. I dipped. Feeling selfless and full of apprehension, I tasted. I was shocked: it was good. Really good. It was creamy and rich and had a nice little beery bite. Eew, Mikey! I liked it! I had another pretzel-tip full, and another. After ten or twelve beer-dip-laden barrel-shaped pretzels, I decided to stop.

But I could not. For the rest of the fucking party (or at least ‘til the beer dip ran out), I was a slave to that bowl. I kept coming back for more. I ate more cream cheese in one afternoon than I had eaten in the previous six months. I don’t even like cream cheese.

So, this is a warning. Do not make this dip. If you’re at a party and you meet a dip that fits my description, stay away from it. It is pure evil.

(But if you’re ever tempted to make it, say for a party you’re having, I recommend that you try using a really nice, flavorful beer like, say, Bell’s Amber, and freshly grated sharp cheddar. And if you do, please invite me, because I’d be interested to try just a pretzel-full, or maybe two.)