Steel Drivin’ Man

As many of you are probably already aware, Kevin from kapgar and author Carly Milne have put together the Grassroots Blogger Book Marketing Campaign to benefit RAINN, the Rape and Incest National Network.
Here’s the scoop from Kevin’s site:

“April is National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, and it’s a big month for the Rape and Incest National Network (RAINN). The organization’s goal is to raise enough money to be able to offer victims of sexual abuse, sexual assault and rape an online hotline offering counseling and assistance 24 hours a day, seven days a week. RAINN’s Chelsea Bowers, Kevin Apgar and Sexography author Carly Milne have banded together to launch a one-of-a-kind online fundraising event to help RAINN reach that goal… but they need your help! All you have to do is do what you already do – blog, but with a twist.
Carly’s book, Sexography, is both a tragic and comedic memoirs about her journey of sexual self-discovery. And now, it’s your turn to blog your own version of Sexography. Even if you’re not a “sex writer” per se, we want to encourage you to explore the comedy, fear, silliness, scariness, million-and-one emotions and million-and-one experiences that are mental, physical, emotional and spiritual, all of which make up the rich tapestry of sexuality.”

So since sex is a topic I rarely cover, I figured now was as good a time as any to break that barrier. A few quick notes, though:
If you are:
a) uncomfortable with the topic of sex toys and self-love, or
b) in any way related to me…
… please know that you are reading at your own risk. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Steel Drivin’ Man – Part One
I had walked past the store dozens of times, always glancing in without being too conspicuous.
Tulip, an Intimate Toy Gallery, the sign said. The delicate lace curtains spoke of a Martha Stewartly quiet elegance, but the leather whip and harness in the window told me otherwise. As I would peek in the welcoming yet daunting doorway, I would catch a glimpse of row upon row of cheerful, brightly colored silicone apparatuses.
For all my perceived open-mindedness, I had to admit that I was a bit of a sexual luddite when it came to self-love. Some habits die hard. As with any form of technology, there are the “early adopters,” the “me-too’s,” and the “Ohmigod, how is it possible you don’t already own one of those’s?”
I just recently figured out how to text message, so it should be clear into which category I fell.
But much like John Henry, that steel drivin’ man, I was a believer in the human spirit. As the tale goes, that salesman came to town with promises of a machine that could do the work of ten railmen, better and faster. Old John knew that no steam engine could out-pace the brute force of his pounding flesh, and I felt exactly the same way.
“T’ain’t no machine can beat me,” I thought.
Over time, though, curiosity started to itch at me like a fresh mosquito bite on my ankle. What if it’s true, what they say? What if this technology is the wave of the future? What if it really is faster, better, more efficient than me? Do I want to end up like poor John Henry, a dead winner?
So I decided that I would go into that store, but not right away. First I needed to educate myself so as not to seem the rube. I hit the Internet hard, spending time on all the key sites: Good Vibrations, Come as You Are, Toys in Babeland, all of them. I studied the makes and models, read customer reviews, learning everything about battery life, charging time, noise level and portability.
I was ready.
It was a Wednesday evening when I finally walked into my local adult toy store. I remember this because it was a calculated decision. I didn’t want to go there too close to the weekend, lest I seem like I had nothing better to do, and too early in the week just seemed wrong, like going to a bar at 10:00am.
It was a small store – intimate, just like the tagline said – and made me feel like I was walking into one of those exclusive clothing boutiques in the hipster neighborhoods. You know the ones – where each table has only one sweater lying perfectly in the center so you don’t dare touch it. Except here, the center table was stacked high with every possible type of vibrator known to woman.
Like a ninja, I slithered along the walls, past the nipple clamps and ball gags, toward the bookshelves. I’m just here to read, because I’m a reader, I said to myself. There was one other customer in the store, and she was at the checkout counter, so I quickly occupied myself by perusing the lesbian erotica section, admiring the collection of hand-blown glass dildos, and flipping through the position-a-day calendar to see what was on my birthday… until finally I heard the words I was dreading:
“What can I help you find?”

[To Be Continued]

If you decide to donate to RAINN as part of this awareness campaign, be sure to write “GBBMC2008” in the “More Information” box and note that you came from Run Jen Run. And if you’re interested in joining all the other bloggers promoting this cause, you can sign up at Kevin’s site through April 15th. Thanks!
Click here to donate!

19 Responses to “Steel Drivin’ Man”

  1. kris dresen Says:

    Finally! Your blog gets good! :-)
    When my baby sister got married, my mom sent me to Good Vibrations to “pick something up” for the couple. I decided a gift certificate was about as much thought as I ever wanted to put into their sex life.

  2. shari Says:

    Hand-blown glass? Seriously?? That just sounds frightening to me. Wouldn’t it break? I mean… ahem… nevermind. Forget I mentioned it.

  3. asia Says:

    OMG, you cant leave it at that! I hate TO BE CONTINUTED! That is totally not cool Jenny.

  4. sizzle Says:

    I’m glad you’re doing this too!

  5. vahid Says:

    it’s medical grade glass, shari, it’s nearly impervious to anything you could do to it over the course of a normal weekend. Don’t ask me how I know this.

  6. jenny Says:

    kris: ha! don’t get too excited… even my sex-blogging barely rates a PG-13.
    shari: that was my initial thought as well, but they’re actually really sculptural and artsy.
    asia: that’s to make you think it’s going to get dirty.
    sizzle: thanks! you and all the others inspired me to join in!
    vahid: why, you little kinkster, you! :)

  7. peefer Says:

    I love the tie-in to Ol’ John Henry. You are awesome, jenny.

  8. Karl Says:

    Vahid, sex toy expert, now packaged with his very own lube!

  9. Jen Says:

    Whoa – I’m already glad you’re in on this project, since this is the first entry I’ve read of yours and I already feel like I know you. I love that you looked for your own birthday in the calendar – I always thought I was the only one. Keep it up, and quickly – inquiring minds and all that!

  10. You can call me, 'Sir' Says:

    Appalled, I am. The plural of apparatus is apparati.
    I expect so much more from you, Jenny.

  11. You can call me, 'Sir' Says:

    Appalled, I am. The plural of apparatus is apparati.
    I expect so much more from you, Jenny.

  12. Tracy Lynn Says:

    *taps foot impatiently* DUDE.

  13. jenny Says:

    peefer: ha – thanks! maybe someday they’ll write a folk song about me for a change!
    karl: who knew he was moonlighting?
    jen: wanna know the sad thing? when i looked up my b-day, it was essentially missionary position. even sex calendars know i’m dull.
    sir: you’re thinking of cactuses. (and btw, when i first wrote this, i actually did wonder if it was apparati… then i looked it up to make sure. )
    tracy lynn: dude. you must chill!

  14. Cheryl Says:

    I, too, am impressed by the steel-drivin’ comparison. It’s both literary and dirty, as all the best books are.

  15. churlita Says:

    I loved everything about this post, except the “to be continued” part. Now I’m going to stalk your blog even more.

  16. claire Says:

    Nothing makes me laugh quite like your blog does. I’ll be totally impressed if you accepted help from a store clerk.

  17. Dustin Says:

    On a scale of 1-10:
    Shockingness of Jenny’s Post: 7.3
    Shockingness of Vahid’s knowledge of glass adult toys: 9.8
    Pretty much my virgin eyes are scared for life.

  18. MOM Says:

    Ummm, I hope you know that I read your blog on a daily basis.
    Notice I’m NOT saying anything further until I see the second installment. But you know I’m not getting any younger…my heart and all that. (ROFL)

  19. jenny Says:

    cheryl: all the best books really are, aren’t they?
    churlita: yow – i was going to drag it out until next week, but maybe i should change that plan…
    claire: oh, you have no idea claire. no idea. :)
    dustin: no kidding! i can’t wait to grill him on this in philly!
    MOM: good god woman! TURN BACK NOW! it only gets worse from here. who do you think you are? kris dresen’s hippie mom? that warning was for you! we must never speak of this again.