Monday, October 17, 2016


I keep a little side-list of articles I want to revisit so I can think about them some more.  A few of them are so startling that I have to wait to settle down a bit.  The quotes below come from an article like that.   I hadn’t read “lithub” before.  I recommend reading the whole article, though it’s misleadingly focused on writer’s block and elves.  I suppose the author was distancing from taboos a bit, and so am I now.  

Here are some quotes to give you an idea.

Question: If you could pick a single writer to make an effective, compassionate statement about identity politics to a divided literary community, who would you pick? Would it be a schizophrenic, autistic person who’d authored an e-book called Space Raptor Butt Invasion?

In 2015, science fiction publications let black writers contribute less than two percent of all published stories. The exclusion extends to the fictional realm: a genre that routinely depicts mythical beings and wild alterations of the human form often inexplicably fails to depict nonwhite human beings.

In the past few years, a right-wing group of sci-fi fans called “the Sad Puppies” have formed to attempt to reinforce the dominance of white males in the genre. More recently, an extremist offshoot called “the Rabid Puppies” have amped up attempts to upset the anti-racist people they call “social justice warriors.” 

Chuck Tingle” is the nom de plume of a Billings, Montana, writer who produces a unique brand of self-published e-books. His stories—he calls them “Tinglers”—are eccentric gay porn packed with bizarre references to dinosaurs, unicorns, and outer space, along with copious uses of the term “buckaroos.” They range from the abstract (Gay T-Rex Law Firm Executive Boner) to the politically up-to-the-minute (Slammed In The Butt By Domald Tromp’s Attempt To Avoid Accusations Of Plagiarism By Removing All Facts Or Concrete Plans From His Republican National Convention Speech) to the exceptionally high-concept (Pounded in the Butt by My Own Butt/).

Whatever else he might be doing, Chuck Tingle clearly applies the seat of his pants to a chair each day and puts words on the page, unfettered by what other people might think.

Eight months ago, Chuck Tingle’s son did an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. “To answer the first question that I always get, Yes, my father is very real,” Jon wrote. “He is an autistic savant, but also suffers from schizophrenia.”


I haven’t read any of Chuck Tingle’s books, not because I’m afraid of porn but because I’m afraid of Amazon.  And also I’m afraid of Billings, where the UU group is anti-ministerial and there are rattlesnakes in the bluffs.  In the past I have tried to imagine what was beyond Japanese “tentacle porn” which resulted from a prohibition on depicting penises.  Octopus tentacles became the metaphor, but then they became, well, tingly in their own right.

Getting it on with a triceratops pretty certainly tops grabby sea creatures.  That’s what’s beyond.  Once I did write a little sci-fi bit about Godzilla mating with King Kong and producing Bigfoot.  But it wasn’t very erotic.  And then there was the one about the Thunderbird fighting the Water Monster, but that was a takeoff in my Blackfeet legends version of Conan and it was more of a thriller.  Still, those mythic creatures are based on the bones of pterodactyls and plesiosaurs found on the high prairie.

When I returned to Portland in 1973, it was in the midst of a joyful outburst that was culturally released by dropping the fuss about genitalia and just being frank.  It was not some determination to be in the faces of Puritans, but a true joyfulness in the basics of bodies.  I particularly recall mugs with handles that were naked men and women, not shaved as in today’s asceticism, but hairy with strands made by pressing clay through a strainer.  It was boisterous, fantastic and great fun.  

In Old Town a whole building was given over to arts and crafts shops, some randy and some not.  I don’t quite know what happened to this building with so much inspired handcrafting and cooperative art.  I suppose the building itself wasn’t up to code — wretched infrastructure again.  Or maybe the politics went sour.  Or people moved on.  Or the homeless people overwhelmed the project.

So now comes this gleeful Chuck Tingle gently mocking the Romance genre with his book covers, which show the conventional six-pack chests only down to the waists — no butts, just the pretty young men (authors?) that old gays like.  Also mocking the whole puffed-up importance of old-school publishing and their bourgeois regard for pretty bound books with prestigious titles.  The stories are a send-up of powerful old whitemen on the way to extinction, clinging to their Viagra prescriptions.  (Googling did not reveal whether dinos had dicks.  It’s doubtful.)

Hugo Trophy

So in the end (sorry — puns creep in) I had to start the free trial of Kindle Unlimited and read one of these butt books.  It was the one about the Sci-Fi Awards, the Hugo, which are quite phallic.  They’re supposed to be rocket ships, but you know what rocket ships and their launching mean metaphorically.  It looks a bit long and sharp to be comfortable, nothing like the soft plastic technicolor little motorized gizmos one sees in advertising.  I’ve learned to google most “erotic” helpers so discovered that a “tingle” is a modest insertable stimulator as well as separately meaning things like lotions with ingredients that make the skin tingle.  The word is used a lot for various named products.

The thing about butt-play, thinking about it from a tiresomely philosophical angle, is that it comes from behind like a predator; is the “animal” way, “doggie style”, slightly dirty; and cannot make a baby (puppy).  Boys in the classroom are not embarrassed to imitate it or to use it aggressively, sort of same-sex herking or jerking or whatever that suggestive dancing is called.  But it is sometimes demeaning and even deadly, as cop-related incidents demonstrate.  Film scripts seem to prefer it.

I downloaded “Helicopter Man Pounds Dinosaur Billionaire Ass” which mixes corporate technology with sexual predation, with sci focus on nano-bloodstream helicopters and transformation.  It’s Jonathan Swift territory with an Oscar Wilde attitude.  To have such a writer show up in Billings, Montana, tells you quite a lot.  The comments from readers are obsessed with finding out about the author.  So far as I know, no one has identified him as belonging to what is supposed to be the elite and profitable “Montana writer” category, but then those who decide on such things still haven’t caught up with “Montana Gothic” or even “Steam Punk.”

In Billings race obsessions are more about Native Americans than African Americans.  Asian-Americans are another undefined category.  But Billings is tied to Colorado and its resource corporations recovering the Cretaceous era deposits popularly thought of as involving dinosaurs — as the Sinclair logo shows.  The interesting aspect of their mascot is that it’s phallic at both ends.  It would be a mistake to turn your back on one.

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