4.18.2013

cock fight, tiger wars

unsigned virility totem found at Goodwill

So one day last week I got a text-with-photo from Jeff: "Dick totem. Best purchase ever." I responded the next day: "What the hell is that penis sculpture and which thrift store was selling it?" The Mormons at D.I. would never put up a quad of angry lingams for sale, and I figured the same was true of the Christians over at Salvation Army. The culprit turned out to be Goodwill. I should have known. Goodwill will put out anything for sale—like a half box of pregnancy tests, a partial stack of adult diapers, or a hammer without a handle. However, Jeff admitted it was "an awkward experience waiting in line with it in front of a family," just this "guy holding some wooden dicks."


carved virility phalluses, secondhand

He claims I've taught him to think ahead about buying presents throughout the year, so he snagged the penis totem for next Christmas' white-elephant gift exchange among his group of dude friends. (Shhh!) I'm sure it will be the hit of the December party season. Taken individually, his friends are successful, smart, and above-average: electrical engineers, computer VP's, graphic designers—guys with rental properties and cute wives and such. But taken as a group, they resemble a frat house, with the adolescent-spy show Archer their favorite series viewed each week from somebody's hot tub.


carved wooden phalluses via Goodwill

Jeff brought over the unsigned carving last weekend to show it off in person. It's much more, shall we say, solid in real life, a true presence. My housemate walked into the room unexpectedly, and I said, "Uh, can you believe Jeff found this at Goodwill?" "Oh, yeah," my roommate said with an arm wave. "They have those in Thailand, only they're much smaller and worn around the neck—you know, for virility."


lingam face, close-up

Speaking of virility, the theme of the week, yesterday I happened to read a Condé Nast article by E.L. Doctorow about a tiger-slash-birder expedition made to a couple Indian nature reserves in the early 2000's. In it, he cited some depressing tiger statistics. Myself, I'd rather see a bunch of carved wooden phalluses with Easter Island faces decorating someone's house than think about all the endangered tigers around the world shot and killed so the Chinese can grind up and eat large cat penises in traditional medicine. Just because some cultural practice is old, doesn't mean it isn't full of baseless superstition. Who decided eating tiger balls would keep an old man active in bed? Let's be more open-handed with our Viagra and save tigers from extinction, shall we? Just because, as Doctorow was told by a tiger expert, tigers tend to eat the genitals first when a man is captured screaming as prey, it doesn't mean we have to reciprocate. What's going to happen when humans are the only hunters left at the top of the food chain? Do we start hunting each other? How exactly did Homo sapiens get left in charge, anyway? Humans blow each other up for fun—or maybe to underline a debate point. (Who really knows?)


wooden virility totem, Goodwill-thrifted

Jeff refused to take his lingam home the other night, so the crew of stern cocks has been sitting on top of my bookcase, standing guard while I sleep, though not so far contributing in any way to my dreams. But maybe they'll bring luck to my job hunt. Go team!


wooden lingam set, thrifted at Goodwill

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