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Old 10-14-2003, 05:09 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Not Tonight, Honey. I'm Logging On

http://www.newyorkmetro.com/nymetro/news/trends/n_9349/


From the October 20, 2003 issue of New York Magazine.

Not Tonight, Honey. I'm Logging On.
Internet porn is everywhere; even “nice” guys are hooked. So where does that leave their girlfriends?

By David Amsden

For Jonathan—an attractive, Ivy League– educated musician and adjunct professor—it all started a couple of years ago, when he was working as a temp in the sleek offices of a Madison Avenue ad agency. There he was, seated at his desk, half-heartedly going over pitches for new accounts, when a colleague tapped him on the shoulder.

“Hey, man, you gotta check this out.” The co-worker spoke in a whisper.

“What?”

Jonathan—who is 33 and speaks with the hapless charm of a Nick Hornby protagonist—made his way over to the neighboring cubicle, where, on the Mac’s fifteen-inch screen, a pixelated young woman was making love to a machine that resembled a Pilates apparatus. The image, he says, “wasn’t for me,” but it did send an impossible-to-ignore signal to that region of the male brain where curiosity and testosterone intersect. “I was like, Oh, I want to see what’s out there,” he says. “At the time, I barely understood what a ‘link’ was, but it didn’t take too long to figure it all out.”

Indeed not. Suddenly, cyberporn seemed to be everywhere Jonathan went. While in the recording studio, he found that the producer, “a real straight-up guy,” was constantly procrastinating with Internet porn. “Sometimes I’d drop in unexpectedly, like when he was supposed to be mixing my stuff, and he’d be at the computer, staring at pornography, going, ‘Oh, I’m sorry, I’m sorry,’ ” Jonathan recalls. “At first, he had the attitude like, Look at how awful this is, because, obviously, we were both supposed to be these educated men. And I’d say, ‘Yeah, that’s awful.’ But the whole time, we’d be exchanging these knowing glances like, But it’s kind of cool, too, isn’t it?”

It became a once-a-day habit—one that, these days, Jonathan admits has gotten somewhat out of hand. For instance, before most dates, he finds himself logging onto TheHun.net, one of many sites that cull and categorize free porn daily, “so I’m not so anxious.” He now jokes about the Internet as “the vortex of self-hatred” because of how it can turn mere diversion into a self-destructive act: “I’ll have a ton of papers to grade, but instead I’ll be like, Let’s jerk off to the Internet first. So I go online, but then I despise myself. I look up, and my computer says I’ve been online for 47 minutes and I’m like, What the hell have I been doing?!”

His latest foray into teaching hasn’t helped matters: Jonathan uses the university’s high-speed connection to download pornography onto floppy discs, he says, because “my dial-up at home is monstrously slow.” Which, he acknowledges, has produced another unorthodox temptation. “God, it’s so fucked up,” he says. “I go into the computer lab, right? And I’m looking at it, and there are these girls all around in their little cubicles, and, I don’t know, I want to see if I can reach orgasm right there.” Discreetly, he has managed to succeed in this mission a few times.

“I think part of the thrill is the danger element. It’s like a Portnoy thing,” Jonathan says. It’s an apt allusion, except for one difference: Philip Roth’s chronic masturbator, Alexander Portnoy, was a high-school freshman, not a 33-year-old professor.

It’s not news, of course, that men are into porn—or that the Internet has made it possible to delve into the dirty without slipping into the back room at a video store or hunkering down in a Times Square peep booth. But in the same manner that looking for flings online went from deviant to de rigueur behavior, the mass consumption of cyberporn has slyly moved from the pathetic stereotypes (fugitive perverts, frustrated husbands) into the potent mainstream (young professionals, perhaps your boyfriend). Thanks to the advent of cable modems and DSL connections, it’s now easier than ever to scan lewd material in the privacy of your own home. One minute you’re reading the New York Times, and then two clicks on Google and—oops!—you’re downloading highlights from Jenna Jameson’s oeuvre.

And why not? After all, we live in a society that not only has embraced porn but giddily lavishes it with high-brow attention. Frank Rich “analyzes” adult entertainment in the Times. Writer Irvine Welsh revisits the Trainspotting crew as it makes a skin flick in his latest novel, Porno. Timothy Greenfield-Sanders offers a coffee-table book of photographs of porn stars—with essays by literary types—and it’s snatched up by an A-list publisher. Porn is not merely acceptable; it’s hip.

Of course, for those not just talking about it but consuming it, cyberspace offers the luxury of total anonymity. A graduate-student friend of mine who admits to looking at I-porn daily puts it: “You don’t want to rent a porn movie, which in and of itself is seedy, just bringing the thing to the counter. Being anonymous is very cool. You’re watching it in the confines of your own home, with your own music playing—there’s a certain comfort. In my case, I can always turn it off and look at ESPN.com.”

Cyberporn has become the raunchy wallpaper to these respectable lives. A 43-year-old trader at a prominent firm spends much of his downtime trading porn—everything from unauthorized photos of Hollywood stars to twisted S&M pics—with his colleagues. “It’s just something to amuse you when you’re bored,” he says. “It’s just there—like white noise.”

A 30-year-old fashion editor was recently floored to discover that two of her most estimable male friends were skilled navigators of the Internet’s seedier sites. “I was at my country house the other weekend when all of a sudden I see that they were casually staring at ViolentRussians.com and Trannies.com,” she says. “What was most bizarre is how no one really cared.” Emily Kramer, the 25-year-old co-founder of Cake, a “female sexual-entertainment company,” explains that the subject is utterly commonplace among her nouveau-bohemian pals. “It’s like a joke among my close male friends,” she says. “I’ll ask, ‘What did you do last night?’ and they say, ‘I was up till five in the morning jerking off to the Internet.’ It’s just like, ‘Oh, whatever.’ ”

Even Dawson is doing it: In the recent film adaptation of the Bret Easton Ellis novel The Rules of Attraction, there’s a scene in which James Van Der Beek mulls over his options on a Friday night at an elite university, one of them being “I could go back to my room, play the guitar, and masturbate to broadband-speed Internet porn.”

It may be a viable laugh line, but when does it stop being funny? Over beers recently, a 26-year-old businessman friend shocked me by casually remarking, “Dude, all of my friends are so obsessed with Internet porn that they can’t sleep with their girlfriends unless they act like porn stars.” A 20-year-old college student who bartends at a popular Soho lounge describes how an I-porn-filled adolescence shaped his perceptions of sex. “Looking at Internet porn was pretty much my sex education,” he says. “I mean, in school, it was just, ‘Here’s a gigantic wooden dildo, and now we’re putting a condom on it,’ whereas on the Internet, you had it all. I remember the first time I had sex, my first thought as it was happening was, Oh, this is pornography. It was a kind of out-of-body experience. I was really uncomfortable with sex for a while.”

Dr. Ursula Ofman, a Manhattan-based sex therapist, says that she’s seen many young men coming in to chat about I-porn-related issues. “It’s so accessible, and now, with things like streaming video and Webcams, guys are getting sucked into a compulsive behavior,” she says. “What’s most regrettable is that it can really affect relationships with women. I’ve seen some young men lately who can’t get aroused with women but have no problem interacting with the Internet. I think a big danger is that young men who are constantly exposed to these fake, always-willing women start to have unreal expectations from real women, which makes them phobic about relationships.” Also, she surmises that cyberporn may play a role in what she describes as “the truly stunning things women today feel obliged to do sexually with a man—whether it’s something like anal penetration or simply not bothering to please themselves.”

All of which raises a question: How much is Internet porn screwing with the way a generation of young men view women?

If you hang out at Suite 16, the trendy Chelsea lounge popular with Britney Spears and every impossibly lithe model in town, there’s a good chance you’ve seen Rick. He is 24, has shaggy blond hair and a body sculpted from three days a week at New York Sports Club, and, when he goes out, tends to sport a dapper pair of black Calvin Klein slacks and a crisp white Hugo Boss button-down. A graduate of one of the country’s top universities, he is on the rise at a good midtown law firm and shares a Williamsburg loft with two roommates. He hangs out at Suite 16 because he likes “to be part of the scene” and also because the girls—in their teeny tank tops—“are simply ridiculous.”

But, speaking of the girls, there’s one small problem: Rick, despite his good looks, is intimidated by them. “Girls like that are waiting for Derek Jeter to walk in, or a movie star, or a 50-year-old guy to be their sugar daddy,” he explains. “They want someone at the pinnacle of his career, who lives on Fifth Avenue—not someone who lives in Williamsburg with two other dudes.”

Rick has a solution—of sorts. “Thing is, you can find a million girls just like them online,” he says. “And they’re naked, doing whatever you want them to do.” And so he’ll often find himself stumbling home at four in the morning and going online to search out digital copies of the women he’s just seen gyrating on the dance floor. Rick admits his isn’t exactly the healthiest outlook on dating. “I think it’s a substitute for reality,” he says. “What you can’t get through real life, you can get through porn.”

Like many other guys his age, Rick, who has never rented an X-rated video and considers strip clubs “a little gross,” discovered Internet porn in high school, and he’ll tell you about it with all the whimsy of a high-school football star waxing nostalgic about his early years on the JV squad. “I remember it clear as day. It just dawned on me: I can type in Pamela Anderson, and naked pictures of her will come up from Playboy!” But it wasn’t until college, when he was introduced to an Ethernet connection, that looking at online pornography became a daily habit. “Think about it. You’re 18, your hormones are out of control, and you’ve got these beautiful women cavorting in all kinds of sexual positions on the screen right in front of you. You know they’re there. You have to look. Everyone in college these days is pretty into it.”

Though Rick, who has never had a serious girlfriend, doesn’t consider looking at cyberporn a problematic pastime, he will admit that it has affected his interactions with women—and not just those apparitions at Suite 16. “I think it’s made me more picky,” he says. “These girls on the computer are just so hot. Obviously, you want to get with a girl like that. So you may be at a bar with a girl, and she’s really cool, but she’s not a ‘10,’ you know? She’s cool, she’s cute, but you quickly start to notice flaws.” Meanwhile, the women who manage to come off as relatively flawless are curiously categorized in his mind: “Say I see a girl who’s hot, I’ll think, That girl is like a porn star!” At the same time, he adds, “I’d be worried if I met a girl at a bar and three hours later we were in bed.”

Recently, Rick was working late and during a break went online and “typed in ‘Heidi Klum,’ because, you know, she’s so hot.” The browser responded with CENSORED CATEGORY: SWIMSUIT AND LINGERIE. What the hell was this? He tried again. CENSORED CATEGORY: ADULT. It was like being caught with a Penthouse by an eagle-eyed nun. “When I first started there, you could look at porn,” he says. “I’d just glimpse at it when I was stressed out. You just go to Google and type in ‘blowjobs.’ ”

And yet he’s never worried that his relationship with I-porn has veered from campy to creepy. “I mean, come on, porn just isn’t so off-limits anymore,” he says. “Porn’s everywhere, it’s in your face! Jenna Jameson’s a cultural icon!”

She most certainly is—and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Next week, Fox will debut Skin, a Jerry Bruckheimer–produced hourlong drama featuring prime time’s first porn king. HBO, meanwhile, is shooting Pornucopia, a six-part documentary on the world of pornography in California’s San Fernando Valley, and the ladies of Sex and the City have saucily deconstructed porn on more than one episode. The Onion constantly parodies Joe Public’s porn habits (classic headline: IRONIC PORN PURCHASE LEADS TO UNIRONIC EJACULATION), and the hit Broadway musical Avenue Q dedicates a number to Internet porn sung by Trekkie, a character whose occupation is listed on the Website as “Internet Porn Addict.” During a recent rant about the blackout on The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, the cantankerous comedian Lewis Black huffed, “Now, I always heard that the biggest souvenir of any blackout was unplanned pregnancies. Well, I didn’t have any sex during the blackout. How could I? My computer wasn’t working.”

And speaking of Jenna Jameson, she was recently plastered on a billboard in Times Square, she has spoken at the Oxford Union, and her autobiography is being ghostwritten by Neil Strauss, a Times critic.

Perhaps the most explicit evidence of mainstreaming is the recent launch of “classy” sex sites designed to appeal to the smart set. While most are filled with the predictable material (“Gorgeous Asian Kinky Sex” and “Lovely Licking Lesbians” read two links from PersianKitty.com, a popular free site), there are now destinations creeping into the porn pantheon that are a touch more, for lack of a better word, tasteful.

“Recently, I was on a date with a guy, and it came up that he didn’t look at Internet porn. I was shocked! My general notion is that every guy does.”

Currently, the most prominent is SuicideGirls.com, which was launched just under two years ago and gets 500,000 unique visitors a week, making the co-founders, Sean and Missy Suicide (don’t ask), a comfortable living off subscribers and advertisers. The site is aimed at those who thought the shy drama chick with the black eyeliner and the nose ring was the sexiest girl in high school (e.g., every guy in Williamsburg). There are thousands of photos of such young women—pierced, tattooed, bleached, you name it—who are paid $200 to be photographed in the buff. Also, to make clear that they aren’t sexual objects but rather empowered, they post profiles expounding on their favorite bands (Radiohead, Björk), writers (Vonnegut, Bukowski), and sexual positions (“With my boot in your face”). Bizarrely, the site also publishes articles on whether Internet porn is harmful.

“We’re not a porn site so much as a pinup site,” says Sean, pointing out two major differences: (1) There’s no penetration to be found on SuicideGirls.com, and (2) these women truly want to be doing it, “unlike the debased women in mainstream porn who are really just used for the money shot.” It’s a community, he adds. Like Friendster.com—only the girls are naked. It’s the nearest thing you can find to a politically correct porn site.

Dan couldn’t believe it. Here he was, walking across campus on a glittering spring day last year to talk to the school psychologist. Now a 23-year-old aspiring indie rocker with an entry-level job in the music industry, he knew that everyone devoured cyberporn. Guys joked about it, girls rolled their eyes ironically, and one of his roommates, a smart computer-science major, was even considering starting his own I-porn franchise. Nonetheless, Dan was starting to worry about his porn habit.

“At first, it was kind of a natural thing, and then it got compulsive,” he says. “I’d feel unnatural when I went to bed if I didn’t look at it. Then I said to myself, Okay, I’m gonna go a week without it. But I could only make it three or four days.”

Moreover, his once-a-day habit was having some peculiar effects on his relationship with his girlfriend. He was in love, yes, and had been committed to her for over four years, but their sex life remained, for him, let’s just say, “missionary.” However, the thought of discussing this with her made him jittery—after all, in all other respects, the relationship was working—and so, he says, “I’d use Internet pornography to get what I wasn’t getting sexually. Say I was really horny. Well, I’d go out with my girlfriend, and then, after, I’d look at it.” On other occasions, he’d peek at it beforehand, much the way certain men rely on Viagra, “and then I’d be like an animal with her, trying to superimpose her with all these images in my head.” Then, during a “break” from the relationship, he found himself in bed with another girl and inquiring, out of nowhere, if he could photograph her nude and post it on the Internet. (No thanks, she said.) “It was like a drug,” Dan says. “I just started to feel so bad about it. I’d think about how these girls I looked at were being exploited, but then I still couldn’t stop. It was totally screwing with the way I thought I should be seeing women.”

Still, there remained something comical—ridiculous, even—about being in the fluorescent-lit office of a psychologist waiting to exorcise his demons.

“So why don’t we start by having you tell me why you’re here today,” the therapist said as Dan sat down.

He took a series of deep breaths. Then, nervously, he voiced his concerns. “Oh, relax,” said the therapist. “There’s been a lot of guys lately coming in to talk about the very same thing . . . ”

“I couldn’t believe it!” Dan recalls with a chuckle. “I never went back to her. I told myself, Okay, I made an effort to stop looking at it.” He pauses for a moment, then adds, “But it didn’t change anything.”
‘It’s really a slippery slope,” says David Marcus, a psychologist who runs a counseling group for men who hope to curtail their cyberporn habits by chatting openly in a half-circle. “It’s not as if looking at pornography of any sort is, hands-down, a bad activity. Certain men are inspired by it, and others with low sex drives can use it to get aroused. Couples, too, can often use it positively.”

Nonetheless, Marcus is certain it can have negative ramifications, and at the San Jose Marital and Sexuality Centre, where he works with Alvin Cooper, editor of the book Sex and the Internet, they break them down in pretty crude (if seemingly random) terms: “Our research has shown that if you spend more than eleven hours a week looking at Internet pornography, then it is starting to become problematic.” Not that all men who’ve become compulsive consumers are eager to be treated. “Most of the men I see are here because their girlfriends are annoyed—they think it’s almost like having an affair. Others found themselves in trouble or even fired for looking at it at work.”

It doesn’t take a Mensa card to understand the appeal of limitless free and frisky women to the male mind. Still, Marcus says, there are more complex factors at work. “It makes sense in a way, because, especially in urban environments, our professional lives are very much go-go-go!, and we put our emotions to the sides,” he explains. “Porn can provide an instant soothing to emotional stress.” Ursula Ofman, the Manhattan-based sex therapist, agrees: “The Internet provides such an easy out that you can manage without any real-life contact for a long time,” she says. “And since Internet porn is so accessible, it’s often very difficult to wean men from it.” Marcus prefers to classify I-porn consumption as a compulsion rather than as an addiction. The difference? “There’s an anxiety component to it,” he says. “In medical terms, we call it ego dystonic, which basically means that it’s a behavior that goes against your sense of self.”

Jill was in love. It was the late nineties, she was a sophomore at a competitive state university, and she found herself smitten with Kyle, a junior with a confident strut who also happened to be the editor of the school newspaper, which won him instant parental approval. By the end of that year, they were a serious couple. Jill knew that she had discovered not only true love but, to put it bluntly, great sex as well.

So when, after a year, she learned that Kyle spent quite a bit of time looking at pornography—first online, then, eventually, on videos too—she wasn’t immediately put off, despite being a psychology major who seriously questioned the morality of porn. “I was the kind of girlfriend who was up for anything sexually,” says Jill, who is 25, has hazel eyes, and works in PR. “When we were having sex, he’d call me his porn star, and I thought that was hot.”

In time, this changed. Kyle would sometimes e-mail her links to sites “he thought were really hot,” which made Jill more than a little uncomfortable. Sometimes, she’d drop by his house for a surprise visit and he’d have already “exhausted himself” with the computer. Then, when she was a senior, the campus scandal of the year was when “a student videotaped herself masturbating and someone intercepted the tape,” Jill says. “People were mass-marketing it on the Web.” Kyle at that point had moved to New York, where he quickly made a name for himself in publishing. “He heard about it and asked me to get him a copy!” she says. Later still, he suggested they watch a movie together, which turned out to be a bad idea. “I figured we’d laugh about it, but all of a sudden he was so serious and into it,” Jill says sadly. “I wanted to giggle, and he was raring to go. I was like, ‘Can we turn this off?’ I was grossed out a little.”

They have since broken up, and have stopped talking. “He was a lot more innocent when he was younger,” she says. “He was looking for love and companionship. Now he just wants a good lay. I’m sure he’s looking for some huge-breasted, tight-assed bitch.”

Now that Jill is single, she finds that porn has also complicated her general outlook on men. “The other day, I was on a date with a guy and somehow it came up that he didn’t look at Internet porn,” she says. “I was shocked! I mean, my general notion is that every guy does.” And there’s something else she finds disconcerting: “The few experiences I’ve had with guys who don’t look at it, the sex hasn’t been very good.”

That said, she’d like to find a man “who doesn’t need to look at hard-core sex every night—online or anywhere else.” These days, she feels “very jaded about love and sex,” but every so often, she finds her cynicism dissolving. For instance, she’ll be out with friends, lounging in a bar on the Lower East Side, sipping a beer, and surrounding her are plenty of clean young men. Many have impressive careers. Many are quite witty. In general, they all just seem so . . . nice. As she puts it: “I think it will be really rare, and hopefully it will happen, that I can meet a guy who will be happy with only me.”
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Old 10-15-2003, 06:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
Tilted
 
That story is so true. I have wasted so much time on the stuff.
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Old 10-15-2003, 06:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Never once have I turned down sex for porn....my computer on the other hand....
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Old 10-16-2003, 05:09 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I have friends that play MMORPG's and they would rather play these games at all hours of the day than go out and meet people that they could have a relationship with. They also have the characters get married online.

I mean if this what you want that is all well and good. I just don't understand why a person would want to give up that physical closeness of meeting people.

But hey to each, their own.
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Old 10-16-2003, 05:44 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Damn interesting article.
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Old 10-16-2003, 06:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Not now; playing bf1942.
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Old 10-16-2003, 08:08 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Man you know how much porn I could of surfed while I read that article!
Maybe their is hope for me yet, good article!
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Old 10-16-2003, 09:10 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jedbeck
I mean if this what you want that is all well and good. I just don't understand why a person would want to give up that physical closeness of meeting people.
Some people don't enjoy what the rest of us like to call the 'real world.'

Meeting people is vastly overrated though; most people simply aren't worth the time or the effort. Look to any college campus or corporate workspace for the proof.
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Old 10-16-2003, 10:04 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Yeah, I think thta if anyone has ever hd a relationship they would know it is not all fun and games. Now the internet porn, that's all it is.
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Old 10-16-2003, 10:23 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I can understand the attraction they have for it. The computer is safe, and it is easy to be something you are not. However I still prefer the up, close, and personal relationships in RL.
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Old 10-31-2003, 04:30 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Uh..Ohhh.

Quote:
“What’s most regrettable is that it can really affect relationships with women. I’ve seen some young men lately who can’t get aroused with women but have no problem interacting with the Internet. I think a big danger is that young men who are constantly exposed to these fake, always-willing women start to have unreal expectations from real women, which makes them phobic about relationships.”

OMG, this is me! I...have a problem.
 
Old 06-17-2005, 04:00 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Holy crap. Upping. I read the whole thing. This is very eye opening. I think I may have an addiction. Sad thing is, I don't even see this changing my online porn habits Back to my search but I definitely think this needs more responses.

Asta!!
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Old 06-17-2005, 04:56 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Hehe I don't think that article is really about porn addiction....

Its a big infomercial for some porn sites
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Old 06-17-2005, 07:10 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I won't trade electronic for real that's for sure.

To take a few lines from the hit musical Avenue Q:

The Internet is for Porn
Quote:
TREKKIE
The internet is for porn!
KATE
Trekkie
TREKKIE
Me up all night honking me horn to porn, porn, porn!

KATE
That’s gross you’re a pervert
TREKKIE
Ah, sticks and stones Kate monster
KATE
NO really, your a pervert
Normal people don’t sit at home and look
At porn on the internet
TREKKIE
Ohhhh?
KATE
What?!
TREKKIE
You have no idea
Ready normal people?

NORMAL PEOPLE
Ready--- ready ----ready

TREKKIE
Let me hear it!

TREKKIE AND GUYS
The internet is for porn!
PRINCETON
Sorry kate
TREKKIE AND GUYS
The internet is for porn!
PRINCETON
I masturbate!
TREKKIE AND GUYS
All these guys unzip their flies
For porn, porn, porn!.
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Old 06-17-2005, 07:19 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jedbeck
I have friends that play MMORPG's and they would rather play these games at all hours of the day than go out and meet people that they could have a relationship with. They also have the characters get married online.

I mean if this what you want that is all well and good. I just don't understand why a person would want to give up that physical closeness of meeting people.

But hey to each, their own.
My wife and I met while playing MMORPG's, so there are still some of us that like the human interaction. We dated for 2 years and have been happily married for 7 months.

To be on topic to the thread, online porn/mmorpg/sex/painting/school/work etc....all of these can be a problem if they dominate your life so much that nothing else seems important.

An addiction by any other name. Just some things are easier to get addicted to. The trick is moderation and balance.

-tenchi
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Old 06-17-2005, 07:29 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Whew! What a long article... it took me longer cause I had to go and surf some more porn... but I came back and finished it eventually.
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Old 06-17-2005, 07:55 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
but I came back and finished it eventually.
The article, or yourself?

In all seriousness, its very very easy to not meet people. The Internet is incredibly easy, and having naked people at your disposal is far easier than having to go out and convince someone to get naked. For quite a while I thought that I might just end up playing MMORPGS and looking at porn for the rest of my life, and not have to worry about the scary idea of meeting people in person...

Its amazing how that all changes when you meet a really awesome person... porn and video games alike both seem so ..lame.
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Old 06-17-2005, 08:49 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mind_Storm

That said, she’d like to find a man “who doesn’t need to look at hard-core sex every night—online or anywhere else.” These days, she feels “very jaded about love and sex,” but every so often, she finds her cynicism dissolving. For instance, she’ll be out with friends, lounging in a bar on the Lower East Side, sipping a beer, and surrounding her are plenty of clean young men. Many have impressive careers. Many are quite witty. In general, they all just seem so . . . nice. As she puts it: “I think it will be really rare, and hopefully it will happen, that I can meet a guy who will be happy with only me.”

Good effing luck! such a creature doesn't exist. Even if you think they don't or wont, they will. Oh yes they will!
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Old 06-17-2005, 02:36 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Man, I think the world would revolve a little happier in its orbit if people would do two things: A) quit being so hung up about sex and B) communicate.
I find that Martel and I are insanely communicative about everything, including sex. If he wants to watch porn, great, but he does it when he wants to and is always respectful of our sex life. If he finds himself masturbating without me a lot, he knows it's because there is a lack of communication about our sex life, so we make an effort to fix that. Also, we are very adventurous together, and always have been, and we like to watch porn together. I think the main issue with guys who get addicted to porn is that no one was around to teach them how to be confident within themselves so they *can* date women who are a "10."

Yet another thing I'll tack onto the "List of things to do when I'm supreme dictator of the universe"....
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Old 06-17-2005, 03:47 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I look at internet porn, but for some reason I actually prefer my imagination to porn most of the time. I look at it maybe once every two weeks, sometimes more... I don't know why, but I just don't find it all that addicting.

It has warped my notion of sex I think though. I haven't ever had sex, but I've watched it thousands of times from all different positions and now I assume that is all always acceptable. My SO recently said she was down for anything when we were talking, but not rear entry, which I just assumed was one of the main ways people had sex.
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Old 06-17-2005, 03:56 PM   #21 (permalink)
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^ Hmm wish I was like that. I've never had sex either but I'd think all the guys who haven't had it would enjoy watching it a lot. I'm starting to think perhaps my addiction is more to masturbation than the actual porn itself. The porn is just a tool I use to do it. I have no girlfriend so masturbation is kinda the only thing I do have. Also I think the porn is a curiousity thing as well, but mainly just a tool.

My mind is too complex and always thinking. I find myself actually getting distracted sometimes during the fantasizing process. It's different when I have something right in front of my face to focus on. No thinking to it just watching and enjoying.

Hmm yeah I need a girl I'm actually quite pathetic

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Old 06-17-2005, 03:59 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Well I masturbate almost every day, I just don't use porn to do it... so I guess we are in the same boat sort of.

I think porn has helped me a lot though (along with this forum) to get a much better understanding of sex and how it works. Some porn at least.
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Old 06-17-2005, 04:03 PM   #23 (permalink)
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^ Yeah I agree. You're never gonna find any that covers intimate sex though. But then again I think somehow we'll know what to do anyway. Haha just imagine if she was like Woman: "I love you" Man: "Yeah baby? You like a fat dick don't you?"

Asta!!
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Old 06-17-2005, 04:03 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Or........... GASP!!!
You could just look at porn TOGETHER with your S.O


Have we really created a society where men (and some women too I assume) feel more comfortable fucking off in the dim light of his/her computer screen?

people are so fucked up in their little internet worlds . . . they need to GET OUT MORE.


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Old 06-17-2005, 04:33 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I don't know how anyone could prefer porn to the real thing... I haven't had sex, but a night of making out with my S.O. is so much better than jerking off to porn in my room.

And asta that made me laugh just imagining it.
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Old 06-17-2005, 04:49 PM   #26 (permalink)
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^ Total agreement. I look at it, make use of it and WISH there was a girl there instead.

Haha thats what I'm here for man!

Asta!!
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Old 06-17-2005, 06:53 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fett56
I don't know how anyone could prefer porn to the real thing... I haven't had sex, but a night of making out with my S.O. is so much better than jerking off to porn in my room.
Quote:
Originally Posted by K-Wise
^ Total agreement. I look at it, make use of it and WISH there was a girl there instead.
Thats 100% exactly me too. I've had a few girlfriends (am single right now though), but am still a virgin. I don't look at porn too often, maybe once or twice a week - sometimes less, sometimes more. All it is to me is a temporary substitute for the real thing. Similar to what Fett56 said, I'd much rather even just cuddle on the couch with a girl than sit in my basement with the Titty Board (which is my sole source of porn these days). Floorplay obviously doesn't make me orgasm or anything, but it satisfies my lust cravings much better than jerking off alone. Being with a girl just makes me feel good about myself. Like an orgasm for the mind I guess you could say. Thats something porn can never do.

I believe it was also Fett56 who mentioned prefering his imagination to porn. I'm the same way. Even if i'm not jerking off, I love to just lay in bed and use my imagination to play out senarios and fantasies, some lasting as long as a half hour, if I can keep concentrated and stay awake. Thats actually how I can put myself to sleep if I can't get to sleep otherwise. It's very relaxing.

To get back on topic of the article, internet porn has always been my sole source of pornography (by the way I didn't read the entire article). I've never even bought a Playboy or other magazine, and have never rented a porno movie. I've always just used the internet because it's so easy and convenient, and see no reason to go out and spend money on something that is available for free in much higher quality and quantity. In the last year or so, the Titty Board has been pretty much my only source of porn. Occasionally i'll visit the links board and see if there are any interesting videos floating around or something like that. I prefer pictures to videos though, even when jerking off. Maybe 1 out of 4 times i'll watch a video instead.

Sweetpea mentioned watching porn WITH your girlfriend. This is something I would love to do, but have never had the chance. Most of the girls i've talked to about porn are opposed to it, and think it's pretty gross to look at it. None of my girlfriends have been interested in watching it. I think it would be pretty fun to watch it with a girl and make commentary about it. Make jokes and just talk about it like people talk about movies or TV shows when they watch them together. Seems like it would be a huge turn on,
It's not really something you could do with buddies, because chances are you'll be getting a hardon when you watch porn which isn't something I'd want to have when around my male friends.

Last edited by todd; 06-17-2005 at 07:21 PM..
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Old 06-17-2005, 07:09 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Todd I'm almost exactly the same as you in this respect. I've never paid for any porn either, and Ive never had any sort of magazine either.

I like videos better though.

the hun is the place I go in the rare event that I do go.
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Old 06-17-2005, 08:48 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Yea i always thought that using a magazine would be kinda uncompfortable. Holding it and jerking off seems like it'd be a big hastle.

Also i couldnt help but think while i was reading the article "These are alot of good porn sites." Guess that a little counterproductive.

But to get back on topic i think just like alcohol or any drug you can get addicted and too much of any good thing can be bad. So i'd say to just keep it to some kind of moderation. I personally use it more often when i am single. I almost feel like i am cheating when i have a girlfriend cause like others have said its a lot better when she does it. She even gets kinda mad when i've spent myself the night before and the payoff isnt as big.
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Old 06-17-2005, 09:56 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetpea

Or........... GASP!!!
You could just look at porn TOGETHER with your S.O


Have we really created a society where men (and some women too I assume) feel more comfortable fucking off in the dim light of his/her computer screen? people are so fucked up in their little internet worlds . . . they need to GET OUT MORE.
Share, porn?!

Anyway, this reminds me of a vicious cycle my buddy ponted out regarding video games. Oddly enough, it applies here.

Geek is socially inept and seeks games for comfort. Geek becomes lonely. Geek tries socializing. Geek's lack of interpersonal skills have caused him to be ridiculed, embarresed, hurt, etc. Geek continues to believe that games treat him better than people. Continues gaming. Game never hurt him. Game always there.

I guess the same may be said for porn.
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Old 06-17-2005, 10:13 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Personally, I used to look at alot of porn. Everyday... all the time, even on here. But now, I don't even think about it anymore. I admit that I was addicted back when I was 16/18 but right now it doesn't have a place in my life.
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Old 06-18-2005, 04:42 AM   #32 (permalink)
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After writing this, I noticed none of the paragraphs are really connected. Apologies.


Well, it's obviously one more thing to be addicted to. There are very few things people can't become addicted to. Is anyone actually surprised by this?

Relationships are the single most important thing to humans. Don't try to argue; it's a fact. We wouldn't exist if it weren't true. Because of this, they become a little big to handle. I've had two great girlfriends, 4 and 2 years respectively, but I didn't ask either one on a date. I was scared to death to, and I still am. Internet girls can't say no. The appeal is simply undeniable.

While I'm in a very sexually satisfying relationship, I still look at porn. It's not a replacement for real intimacy. It's just something different. I like to try lots of different kinds of ice cream, but cookies n cream is still my favorite. I also like to share my ice cream. It usually tastes better that way.

Some guys watch porn because they feel inadequate. Some girls are afraid of guys watching porn - because they feel inadequate. Does this make sense to ANYONE? Both sides of the relationship are fucked up because they're too afraid to talk to each other. The problem is not porn. The problem is people.

Quote:
“I think it will be really rare, and hopefully it will happen, that I can meet a guy who will be happy with only me.”
She later added, "so I can control every aspect of his life." If you can't recognize that people are curious by their nature, you're in for a long ride. I think this quote was a terrible end to an article that might have been insightful, otherwise. It suggests to you that the only possible way a person can be healthy is to never look at pornography. If you even look at it, and you're not disgusted by it, you're a bad person. Yeah, ok Inquisitor Torquemada.
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Old 06-18-2005, 01:42 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 777
Share, porn?!

Anyway, this reminds me of a vicious cycle my buddy ponted out regarding video games. Oddly enough, it applies here.

Geek is socially inept and seeks games for comfort. Geek becomes lonely. Geek tries socializing. Geek's lack of interpersonal skills have caused him to be ridiculed, embarresed, hurt, etc. Geek continues to believe that games treat him better than people. Continues gaming. Game never hurt him. Game always there.

I guess the same may be said for porn.

Good point.

But being married to a gaming geek and very shy man........ all he had to do was smile at me and say hello and i was hooked

There are women out there who adore the shy type guys, me included, my point in my initial post was if these guys (and some women) just got a little courage up, turned off their computer and said hello to a real life woman, they just might meet their future wife and end up happy.

I'm sorry if my initial post came off a bit agressive . . . i just know there are allot of really wonderful men sitting in front of comptuer screens instead of meeting women and with just a little courage, i think they would find the real world would treat them quite nicely.

Sweetpea
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Old 06-18-2005, 03:31 PM   #34 (permalink)
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I found the porn thing hitting rather close to home.

For years my ex bought me subscriptions to Playboy as a birthday gift - I eventually asked her to stop because I just didn't have room for them (sort of like the shelves of National Geographic that eventually had to go). All the magazines I threw out - Playboy, Geographic, Time, I first went through and cut out pictures to keep as a reference library (a library of visual images is called a "morgue" for those who didn't know). I did hang on to a bunch of magazines that were "classic" - various anniversary issues, the Jimmy Carter interview etc.

The ex and I even had picked up some videos, and time to time would make sure the little ones were asleep and set up a love nest in the living room for viewing etc.

Move ahead a few years and I have a wife who for months was basicly bed-ridden (bad reaction to flu shot). I am working full time, drawing 4-5 hours a day, doing the 4 kids thing, the housework etc etc.

My drawings often use the female form as a framework, or reference for composition simply because it is so beautiful and visually accessable - people feel an affinity for different pieces in part I think because there is an inherent rightness given by being constructed around the female form. And I find the female form just so completely beautiful in the abundance of variety there is.

Anyway, I would have an idea and no picture in my morgue. I looked on the sites the guys from work were always logged on to for pictures to download for a virtual morgue. It became a game - get 6 pictures before leaving for work. Do you know how hard it can be to find quality images of beautiful women without the picture being raunchy, cheap or involving some sort of penetration? Anyway, the ex wondered what I was up to on the computer before I went to work,and found the morgue and flipped, and we separated.

We got back together, went to councelling for years (there were other issues such as a particular child we have etc etc). But eventually I noticed that for years (like, probably most of my married life) things weren't working and the wife looked more and more ill and etc etc. We talked about how we were basicly dysfunctional, didn't want to begin to hate each other because of that, so we separated again - this time for good.

Long post - key factor was that soft core cruising can have an effect too. I do think it was more the fact that the ex had doubled in size and felt ugly and worthless and that she'd recently met a sympatico guy, more than that I looked at photos of ladies, but still....

I still cruise the Titty Board, and AlmightyZeus.com a couple of times a week. Don't see it as an addiction but that could be me wanting to look good. Don't feel like a pervert though
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Old 06-18-2005, 04:10 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 777
Share, porn?!

Anyway, this reminds me of a vicious cycle my buddy ponted out regarding video games. Oddly enough, it applies here.

Geek is socially inept and seeks games for comfort. Geek becomes lonely. Geek tries socializing. Geek's lack of interpersonal skills have caused him to be ridiculed, embarresed, hurt, etc. Geek continues to believe that games treat him better than people. Continues gaming. Game never hurt him. Game always there.

I guess the same may be said for porn.

I know exactly what you are talking about with this. I almost got into that cycle the first 2 years of high school... I played games a lot, had few friends, and had terrible social skills. I wasn't overweight or anything, played sports and ran but I was terrible at talking to girls. I don't know what got me out of it, but I'm glad I got out. I was also a lot more into porn then... kind of went hand in hand (no pun intended).
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Old 06-18-2005, 09:50 PM   #36 (permalink)
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before I got a real girlfriend, the only thing I knew about girls was what I'd seen in porn. no mojo whatsoever, consequently.

pretty much in the same ship as fett56 was in high school....

however, I have never, EVER felt as though watching porn would be better than sex.

I was a bit shocked when the first boobs I saw up close had nipples that werent what you would have seen in porn...but I got over that in about 2 seconds.
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Old 06-19-2005, 01:50 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Heh, from reading the thread title I thought this would be somehow related to World of Warcraft.

Good article.
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Old 06-21-2005, 08:40 PM   #38 (permalink)
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That was a good article. And come on, looking at porn for only 11 hours a week is complusive....bastards.
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Old 06-22-2005, 07:08 AM   #39 (permalink)
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This was a great article. The abundancy of online porn is really starting to change the social dynamic between men and women. The people out there who haven't had sex yet (men and women) and look at online porn, may get the wrong idea. Men thinking that women like rough sex, when many do not, at least not all of the time. Men on the other hand rarely last 15 - 20 minutes when they don't have any experience (yes, I know there are execeptions). Basically my point is that we are skewing our expectations of the opposite sex.

I know that this affects men more than women. Like the article explains, perhaps men like a certain kind of sex, and the woman they love really isn't into it, well they use the internet to fulfill what they need sexually and then go off to their signifigant other. Is that healthy for the relationship? Men are getting a "quick fix" with the net, vs taking the time to get a woman ready for sex. You don't have cuddle your computer afterwards, well if you do, you have bigger problems. How much romance is left in the world if a man is more arroused by the internet than by a real woman. Of course we all know there is no substitute for the real thing, but how will future generations know if everything turns to cyber.

Notice the increase of child porn on the net? It's on the news almost monthly. Some authority figure (priest, teacher, etc...) is found with child porn, or in some cases just porn ont their computers. For the child porn, that is a real problem, but how much can we blame the user, why aren't we doing more to catch the people putting this stuff out there.

Now, everyday legal porn being downloaded by teachers, priests, nannys, whatever. It is natural to want to view this material isn't it? The article even points out the guy working in the office who gets called over to his colleagues computer to see what was on it. Although he knew it was wrong, he still felt an attraction, that feeling of not being able to look away and that burning question of what else is out there.

Most everyone now has at least one computer in their house. I would say most of those have some sort of internet connection. With alcoholics, they have to go and purchase their addiction. However what if someone was standing in your livingroom and offering it to you for free. You can't tell me that it wouldn't be harder to quit. Cigarettes, same thing. We all know that there is free porn out there and all it takes is one click. Heck, even trying to go to a harmless site can bring up images or advertisements for porn. Yes, we have to make the conscience decision to go to that site, or do a search, but it is really hard to say no.

Am I for banning porn websites? No way. Heck I myself visit them, it is like a challange to see if you can find what turns you on for free. I also don't believe in censorship. I agree to find the purveyors of child porn and clean that out completely. Obviously there is a healthy and unhealty viewing of porn. Some people are into it, others aren't. Where is the unhealthy line drawn? Does it depend on the person, the relationship? Could internet porn help bring down the number of sex crimes or make them go up? Time will tell how this new medium will affect our society on a mass scale. One thing is for certain, as has always been said: Sex sells.
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Old 06-22-2005, 07:22 AM   #40 (permalink)
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What an article. I'm not sure if I should be commending you more for posting it in the first place, or commending the people who have responded with thought-provoking opinions. 777, I love your bit about video games and their effect. Doesn't any addictive behavior act in such a way? There are these cycles that one goes through. Compulsive cleaning is one I deal with...

Porn is a touchy spot for me. I despise it, but understand that it's somehow an integral part of male culture. I also don't particulary enjoy lude comments at work either, but as a non-ugly chick in the theatre it's pretty impossible to ditch them. I swear somehow all the evil of the world is bundled up in porn... but then again, I am told that there is some classy stuff out there. If it were somehow artistic or creative from a technical standpoint, maybe I'd be more attracted to the stuff.
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