SEX - SCENT OF A VAGINA
Slicing through lower Manhattan's midsection during my frequent walk from my Soho office to my boner-friend's apartment in Chinatown, I cross many multi-cultural sensory experiences. There's the gaudy colored lights strung across Little Italy, accenting the red and white checkered table clothes and tempting window displays of cheese. In Chinatown, there's crates of unfamiliar spices and markets lined with plastic crates of live flopping sea creatures. Yet not all the fish on display are alive, some rest on ice in the early stages of decay. As I walk by the fish markets my face contorts to a classic sick-face, and not just because of the smell. "Pussy smells like fish" jokes flow through my head ("Your girlfriend's vagina smells like Bumble Bee tuna"- Riff Raff) and I become angry. My vagina's feelings are hurt.
In Riff Raff's defense, there is some truth to the whole pussy-smells-like-fish thing. When natural bacteria overgrows in the vagina they release amines that smell, well, fishy. If there's something not quite right going on down there, say a yeast infection, vag smells yeasty like beer. If anything really fucking weird is wafting from your coochie, see a doctor as it could indicate a more serious infection, and maybe you should have used that condom last weekend. But if you take showers (the vagina is self-cleansing, but splashing some soapy water down there can't hurt) if pussy smells at all, it's pretty sexy. Rich, full of delightful musky pheromones that are supposed to turn us on.
I love the smell of my vagina. In fact, when I get anxious I stick my hands down my underwear then put them up to my nose and inhale intensely like Molly Shannon does with her pits in Superstar. Just kidding. But in all seriousness, I think my vagina smells awesome and so do sexy-sex partners. Likewise, in my girlie-experiences I've yet to encounter another whose odor offended me. If a guy ever told me to take a shower before he went down on me, I'd say "How about you get in the shower and rub one out while thinking about One Direction, because we both know you'd prefer that anyway." Sure, pussy doesn't smell like Chanel No. 5 (although maybe Angelina Jolie's does, and that's what Brad's trying to tell us in those bizarre ads) but it doesn't smell like a fish market on Grand Street either. It smells like pussy, as it should.
And by the way, after dangling around all day next to sweaty balls and an asshole, penis doesn't exactly smell like roses either. We just hear more raps about nasty-smelling puss than nasty-smelling peen because women are far more polite and respectable creatures.
DRUGS - TAKE LSD WITH PEOPLE YOU LOVE
On a Friday morning in August of 2008, an Obama campaign volunteer rang the doorbell of my best friend's home. I had just gotten back from a summer abroad in Europe and was visiting her for the weekend before we headed back to school. The night before we threw a party and I took acid for the first time, several tabs lovingly placed on my tongue by a hairy party guest. 12 hours later, my friend and I were still tripping balls. We opened the door for the eager volunteer who handed us pamphlets and asked if Obama had our vote. All I could do was stare mutely because she looked like a water color painting, the driveway was twinkling, and it was all quite distracting. I wish I told her that if she knew the amount of LSD dancing in my brain at 10AM she would not look so worried that we might be conservatives. The Obama lady eventually backed away from the awkward acid monkeys, we shrugged off the encounter and headed to the kitchen to wash our hands with a mango.
That acid trip gave me greater personal insight than you'd get from a sweat lodge session with Oprah. I looked at myself in the mirror (which one should always do with caution while on LSD) and loathed my dyed blonde hair. I saw my dark roots poking through and looked at my green eyes and vowed to stop bleaching my hair. I imagined the insignificance of my weight compared to the mass of the universe and realized how stupid it was to obsess over a ten pound weight fluctuation. I overcame bulimia in part thanks to that acid trip. I spent a long time looking at a spider web and realized the beauty of the seemingly everyday facet of nature, and to this day I can't bring myself to brush away a spider web. As they say, once you open your mind, it's hard to close it.
This acid trip was with people I loved. We ran around in the woods and laid on super comfy rugs and it was fucking awesome. Another time I took it I was with a more questionable crowd while I was getting a cold, on my period, and super constipated. I was anxious the whole time and couldn't stop thinking about poop and how gross bodies are. This is why you should always take acid in a comfortable setting in a peaceful state of mind. To quote the LSD granddaddy himself:
"Acid is not for every brain...Only the healthy, happy, wholesome, handsome, hopeful, humorous, high-velocity should seek these experiences. This elitism is totally self-determined. Unless you are self-confident, self-directed, self-selected, please abstain." -Timothy Leary
ROCK 'N' ROLL - RARE TIMES
When I watch porn I fast forward past any stupid plot lines and get straight to the pounding. I like my porn as filthy as Andrew W.K's underwear; a means to get off to sexual acts I lack the balls to ever actually go through with in real life. I'm sharing my porn preferences with you because Rare Times are no strangers to sharing space with on-camera boning, the Los Angeles boys recorded their first EP “Missionary” in a warehouse filled with porn studios.
Rare Times was created by Anthony Calonico and Alex Talan. Joined by percussionist Chris Parise and guitarist Marcus Andersson, they make four. Marrying opposite ends of the spectrum, Anthony started out as a jazz pianist and composer while Alex worked on electronic productions. Their video for “No One's Looking Out” shows off their grimy side, yet without the visuals the EP sounds more like its relaxing sex position title: “Missionary.” Perhaps the duality of their founders' musical backgrounds allows Rare Times to feel filthy yet comforting at the same time.
If you're doing it right, as Rare Times do, missionary isn't boring. It's catching drips of your lover's sweat with your tongue. It's what you want after sipping dirty martinis (gin, the real deal) in a dark corner of a hotel bar with someone you don't want to break eye contact with. From slipping the olives off the toothpick with my teeth, through the cab ride home, to him on top of me, I want this EP on loop.
“Missionary” comes out February 25 on Feel So Real. Watch the video for “No One's Looking Out” below.