Michael Fassbender on set
My new camming job with Randy Blue has brought me far afield in search of new gadgets and gizmos and garments for my wardrobe. Beset by a constant call for "toys", I've had to realign my usual weariness of non-human interventions in the bedroom. Unaccustomed to the use of prosthetic plastic penises and averse to their often unflattering aesthetic design, I've had a HELL of a time trying to find a decent dildo I like. So off I go to DC, in hopes of finding the goose to gun my golden g-spot. I can't say I'm completely satisfied (but then again, my satisfaction isn't the matter at hand). Early in my day of shopping I found a near-term solution: a gentle looking minimalist "tool" from Titan Men. What the hell, I bought a paddle too.
Stranded in the nation's capitol with a sack full of sex toys I couldn't bear the embarrassment of exposing my new neoprene friends to the black working class security guards at the National Gallery. Warhol's "Headlines" will have to wait. What to do? Duck into a dark theater of course for a NC17 treat! Sack of toys at my feet, I settled in for artist Steve McQueen's second serious stab at film-making, "Shame". How appropriate.
The film feels "gay" even though the plot ostensibly revolves around a porn-addicted, sex-obsessed heterosexual man played by Michael Fassbender (in real life the alleged distant relative of Irish Republican hero Michael Collins). Oddly enough, McQueen has directed several other homoerotic videos, including "Bear" (1993), and his first feature length film "Hunger" (2008). Despite the proof of his oeuvre, McQueen insists he is not himself homosexual, though he doesn't mind the association. If you should question McQueen's veracity, the wildly exaggerated and inaccurate gay sex scene at the climax of the film should dissuade any lingering doubt. The carefully compartmentalized private life of the film's main character Brandon is upended with the arrival of his fee-wheeling artsy sister. Naturally, crisis ensues. Anyone who knows a friend with a sex addiction (or might suffer themselves) will recognize much of the film's trajectory: the perpetual cycles of disavowal and orgiastic retourné, the frequent trips to the men's room, the filthy office hard-drive-- symptoms of obsession. Expect a beautiful film from this Turn Prize winning director. A nice communist moral sums up the end of the film as well: unmitigated selfish desire leads to the repeated self-obliteration of the human family (nicely symbolized by Brandon's plucky sister and her monstrously scarred wrist). Damn you day traders!
I walked away satisfied, not least by the frequent and shameless peeks at Michael Fassbender's glorious uncut cock and perky ass. But then again, what about people like me? I depend on those same rich day traders to keep my heat on.
At one point in the film, Brandon's sister finds a live chat session open on his computer. "Are you Brandon's girlfriend?" Jasmine, the bare-chested girl behind the screen says, "Wanna play?" "I know just what makes Brandon happy." Jasmine may be the closest thing Brandon has ever had to a long term relationship, but she's only a blip on the screen. Maybe sex workers like Jasmine are the problem? Maybe I'm the one that should feel shame?
Hmph. I gathered up my sack of toys and hit the train home to Baltimore. For what it's worth I like giving men pleasure. Demons aside, we all need to get off. It's time someone tells our story. Solidarity.