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26
Jan
0
Posted by on in Gay History

 

Psalm 133:1-2
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that runs down upon the beard, Aaron’s beard, that runs down to the hem of his garments.

Why am I quoting a psalm from the Bible? We are just released a new porn compilation, Love a Man with a Beard 3, on DVD and streaming, and it's pretty obvious that the passage above refers to a beard. Not just any beard, but the beard of the first high priest of Israel. But something is happening on the beard. Oil is running down it, profusely. Why?

The Talmud makes the connection between these this passage and another passage in the Bible, Leviticus 8: 10, 12. Psalm 133 makes concrete heaven’s response to the actions of Moses and Aaron as they fulfilled their roles as servants of God. Moses and Aaron were brothers who stood together as one unified presence before God, especially as Moses anointed his brother Aaron for the service of the tabernacle (which contained the famous Ark of the Covenant); together they blessed the people (Leviticus 9:23). In their culture, blessings were physical: fertility (the end result of sexual prowess in Biblical culture) and wealth, as well as spiritual/emotional ones such as peace and intimacy.


 

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19
Jan
0
Posted by on in Gay Popular Culture

 

 

Zucchinis posed to look like cocks and balls

Actually, according to various Internet sources, the "big" zucchini is actually a small summer squash.

And also, not just because of its phallic shape, but really and truly an aphrodisiac (see below)!

Some zucchini facts:

Zucchini is really a fruit, not it is treated as a vegetable in the culinary world. It is the swollen ovary (yes, a female part, despite its phallic shape) of the plant it comes from.

The indigenous peoples of Central and South America had been eating zucchini for thousands of years, but the zucchini we eat (and it really didn't become popular in the United States until as recent as thirty years ago) was developed in Italy. Zucchino in Italian means “small squash.”

Now, here's the connection with sex. Apparently the roots that zucchini grows on absorb minerals that build both red and white blood cells, enhancing the circulation of oxygen in the blood. Thus, if one eats this vegetable before sex, your performance will improve markedly. I haven't found case studies that prove this yet, but check out the aphrodisiac blogspot for much more detailed information.

And, for men who suffer from health issues related to the prostate, nutrients in zucchini also reduce the symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy (BOH), a condition in which the prostate gland enlarges and leads to complications with urination and sexual functions in men.

There's even a recipe for an aphrodisiac salad which features chopped zucchini and that other vegetable associated with strength and virility and Popeye, spinach. Yes, they call it the sex salad.
 

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12
Jan
0
Posted by on in Gay Popular Culture

 

 

Older woman dancing with arm motions to the YMCA

In the 1970s, a youngish housewife in the west suburbs of Chicago dances to this tune on the green shag carpet. She gets her toddler to do it, swinging him by the arms. Her high school age son looks on with a combination of horror and embarrassment.

More than 40 years later, at her grandson's bar mitzvah in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, Bubby Ruth Goldstein (known for her get up and go) takes over the dance floor from her hip hop loving grandson and his friends when the band, in an effort to get everyone involved (an exhausting but necessary requirement for such functions), tries the nostalgia trick. It works.

Has this song become only a nostalgic camp crowd pleaser? Perhaps. I know the current Village People perform primarily on the nostalgia circuit (I saw them at gay Halsted Market Days and at “straight” Taste of Chicago because these popular commercialized festivals attract multiple ages and they need the “older crowd” of boomers with the spending power these days).

But there's a history behind and after it which, despite the campy appeal of the piece, is quite interesting because what we normally seem to think is true about this song ain't necessarily so.

According to Felipe Rose, the group's founder in an interview with the Huffington Post, "I don't think Jacques' intent (Jacques Morali, the original producer of the group) was, 'Oh, I'm just going to put together a group for the gay audience,'" says group member Eric Anzalone (the biker). "He knew the music industry and he knew if he had a hit in the clubs -- which, in the '70s, the gay, the Latin clubs -- that was the place to be." Thus, perhaps, the gay subtext was not meant originally.



Village People band photo

But then, also according to the Huffington Post, explaining to Rose that the controversy was actually about whether Victor Willis (one of the original members, no longer peforming with group, the leather guy) was against it being used as a gay rights anthem, and not about whether he was against Russia using it at the Sochi Olympics, Willis said, "To the band? Well first of all, the song was never written about anything to do with gay... "It was just a filler song, based on the ex-producer seeing the YMCA sign during lunch and asking us what it meant. Sure, there was ambiguity and they were using a double entendre, but it was really just supposed to be one more song to fill out the album."

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28
Dec
0
Posted by on in Gay Popular Culture

 

 

Banana eating and sucking a cock in a fruit bowl from The Night Before
Yes, we have no bananas …

Bananas have become pretty much a staple food in America (and also a source of much sexual innuendo, see below), but they are a comparatively recent addition to food culture in Western civilization.

It's obvious that before the opening up of the New World and global trade routes and technologies that bananas weren't easily accessible to Europeans. But even as late as the Victorian period, when one could buy them, they weren't exactly a popular food item. And not because of Victorian prudery. Many Victorians complained the fruit tasted like soap.

By 1910, however, bananas were consumed widely enough that slipping on a banana peel became a trope in Western physical comedy
 

Cartoon businessman slipping on a banana

According to Wikepedia, an American comedy recording from 1910 features a popular character of the time, "Uncle Josh", claiming to describe his own such incident:

Now I don't think much of the man that throws a banana peelin' on the sidewalk, and I don't think much of the banana peel that throws a man on the sidewalk neither ... my foot hit the bananer peelin' and I went up in the air, and I come down ker-plunk, jist as I was pickin' myself up a little boy come runnin' across the street ... he says, "Oh mister, won't you please do that agin? My little brother didn't see you do it."

The song “Yes, We Have No Bananas” was written by Frank Silver and Irving Cohn and originally released in 1923; for many decades, it was the best-selling sheet music in history. Since then then the song has been rerecorded several times and has been particularly popular during banana shortages.

Banana shortages occurred during WWII in England primarily because of the Japanese takeover of Malaysia; in America, which did not suffer such an involuntary shortage, they had become such a staple of cookery by the 1950s that bizarre concoctions such as the ham-banana casserole and ham and bananas hollandaise appeared in cookbooks.Ham and bananas hollandaise image from cook book

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14
Dec
0
Posted by on in Gay Popular Culture

 

 


Lately I've been spending too much time on ladders. Literally. I moved house, my next door neighbor and other friends have asked me to help them with projects that involve ladders, and the Bijou Video office moved. All that moving and packing and sorting and fixing and hanging up items usually involves some kind of ladder. Up and down, down and up.

In the Old Testament, the patriarch Jacob supposedly experienced a theophany when he saw angels ascending and descending on what some have claimed is a ladder (or was it a stairway?). Lucky for him.
 

Jacob's Ladder painting Michael Lukas Leopold Willmann

Now, pretty much everyone has heard about not walking under a ladder, because it supposedly brings bad luck. And not just literal (like the ladder falling on a person).

So, what is it about ladders? Stairways to heaven or holes to hell? Or both simultaneously?Jacob's Ladder painting Blake

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