Forget the dick pics – what’s your IQ?
I have this friend that does the Web thing. Y’all know what I’m talking about. That whole Black Gay Chat, Adams4Adams, I’m-gon’-send-you-a-three-word-message-and-hope- you-toot-the-booty-up thing. And just because I have nothing better to do, and because my computer is set up to display on my TV screen (dick photos are hard to ignore on a 27″ monitor), I look over his shoulder as he surfs these sites.
*shakes head* Damn, y’all, is this where we are as a community? What does it say about someone when the only pics they post are of their dick and/or ass? How about, “I’m afraid you won’t want to get to know me unless I show you the body parts you might want to sample”? With that in mind, isn’t it funny when their About Me section is a rant about how tired they are of meaningless sex and being used by people who don’t care about them? Dear ones, YOU were accomplices in your own objectification. Why get upset when somebody completes the job?
Then there’s the thug drag. This is not a holier-than-thou thing for me – I’ve tried the hardcore look too. You almost can’t be a Black man without slipping on that hypermasculine stereotype to see how it fits. But maybe curiosity is the root of the problem. Slipping the thug outfit on is easy – slipping out of it is the problem. Like Medea’s poisoned dress and Venom’s body suit, it has a tendency to weld itself to the wearer. Even if you claw free, the tiniest fragment remains a part of you, leaving potent, indelible memories of what it felt like to be the object of fear and fascination, desire and disgust, even if only briefly. A fitted with size 40 Rocawear jeans, an XXXL white tee and some Timbs is a sartorial haiku on the state of Black masculinity in America and beyond. In the photos people post to attract whomever, this style of dress becomes a guarantee, a quality control stamp; “I’m a real nigga [sic],” it says.
So I wonder – with the presentment of (presumably) desirable body parts and the process of manhood authentication by wardrobe, is there space to actually reveal oneself to another person on these sites? Back when people used to troll CollegeClub and BlackPlanet the way they do these sites, I used to try to get people to open up about themselves, to talk about more than top/bottom/vers, yourplace/myplace/theho-tel. The results were astounding – most of them were creeped out. I could gaze on the extreme closeups of their scrotums all I wanted – sidenote: MOISTURIZE the twins before the photo shoot; some of y’all’s nuts look like the damn Gobi desert – but a conversation deeper than “So wut do u get in2” was an invasion, even a violation. So I gradually learned to ignore those messages and showed no interest in the new sites when they appeared.
A few times I did get some real feedback from some guys, which led to some really hot phone/cybersex, which leads me to what I hope is a good final thought – why should an exchange so inherently impersonal end in actual physical intercourse? This is why so many of the kids are runnin around bowlegged and brokenhearted with the clap… if you’re going to provide fantasy for others and indulge in the fantasy they provide as well, why would you then make yourself available and vulnerable to them in the very real flesh? It takes a stronger psyche than most of us possess to do that and remain whole. Why not lift eroticism out of space and time completely and let it end as it began, a mindfuck?