By Alexa Day
A merry Fourth of July to those who celebrate!
There’s always some measure of conflict about how the Fourth is best celebrated in the States and among Americans abroad. Does the day call for a trip to the beach? A cookout? Baseball game? Fireworks? What would best embody the nation’s ideals? Does the nation still have ideals?
This year, I mark the Fourth of July with one of my family’s enduring American values: I’m working. Work is the backbone of both sides of my family, so it would feel kind of strange to have nothing to do. But the spirit of the American workplace also demands an outlet for distractions. There’s little sense to working on a holiday if you’re not going to spend part of the day goofing off.
So for those of you who are working today, and those of you who are not, I present a brief list of holiday distractions. I just have one request for you all. When you encounter those who are working today, be good to them. It’s not enough to say that freedom’s not free. For a lot of Americans, freedom is damned expensive.
Now go have fun.
1. Playboy is on point as always. Get ready to see the founding fathers in a whole new light as the venerable Bunny Mag takes you on a kinky trip through America’s past. Feel free to break out those factoids when your fellow partygoer insists on the annual history lecture. He probably doesn’t know that Ben Franklin preferred cougars.
Also, this article about Pornhub’s new interactive porn caught my eye — you guys know I love the teledildonics. Pornhub says their interactive offerings are mostly (entirely) for men and their sex toys, but they’ll be sure to have something for the ladies soon. We must fight for our rights, my friends, and hold them to it.
2. OMGYes has been around for a long time, but I’m really just becoming aware of it. It’s a large repository of women sharing their frank observations about what gets them off. (Hint: the clitoris offers a near-infinite variety of avenues to climax, the most pleasurable of which are the least direct.) It’ll cost you to get in there, but $39 is a small price to pay for so much wisdom. Indeed, for some of us, that money is a tax deduction. Ain’t America grand?
3. Teen Vogue has emerged as a powerhouse of American journalism, and I am so, so proud to be able to say that without irony. Its standout political coverage, along with fashion articles and a feature on cake decorating that delivers on its every promise, declares to this nation and the world that the interests of teen girls are diverse, all-encompassing, and not limited to teen girls. Don’t sleep on the girls. Don’t sleep on Teen Vogue.
Guess what made me happiest? You got it — this article on BDSM and consent. It refers to itself as the “teen’s guide to understanding consent in BDSM,” and its crux, that uninformed consent is not consent at all, should be printed on billboards. Also not consent? Coerced consent. Such as when someone threatens to leave the relationship in his helicopter — or other conveyance, whatever — unless you do whatever he wants without complaint.
Actually, you know what? I’m no good at being coy. I’ll just drop a quote here.
“Christian Grey essentially coerced an inexperienced novice into a world of kink— she consented, but she didn’t even know what she was consenting to,” says Gigi Engle for Teen Vogue. “That is problematic and it is wrong.”
Her truth is marching on.
Have a happy Fourth and follow Lady Smut for all the fireworks.