Muff Diving in Our Time

Lesbian Public Sex Beyond the Bars

We've learned a lot from gay boys. For years, we not-so-secretly envied their pornos, their cruising rituals, their bathhouses, their promiscuity, their ability to have raw, blatant, unencumbered-by-emotions sex. Red, Throb's other producer, recently teamed with Michael (of the infamous Meatpackers parties) to create an all-genderqueer sex party once a month called Spam. At the inaugural bash in February, Michael observed, "All the men are silently cruising or fucking, and all the women are talking. Men aren't used to there being any talking in a sex club"—and women aren't used to not talking.

It's a matter of training more than anything else. We seldom wink, drop our drawers, and jerk each other off. Spam has created a public space for a back-and-forth dialogue between queers about sex, which, from what I've witnessed, may take the form of a dyke fucking a gay boy in the ass or a fag getting his first mouthful of pussy. Building community alliances has never been so challenging.

But bonding has its limits. While the clothes check is a staple in gay sex clubs, most dykes won't take it all off. A butch with the perfect leather chaps to highlight that big bulge, or a femme with a breast-for-days nightie would be offended at the thought of stripping down. That's partly because of female body issues, but more importantly because what we wear is a critical part of our gender and sexual expression. Unlike the boys, our cunts alone don't dictate who or how we fuck.

Maybe we can learn from gay men how to cruise and follow through. Maybe we can teach them to talk with their mouths full. In the future, perhaps lesbians will have our own 24-7 sex dens and gay men will be the ones taking notes.

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