Saturday, 31 October 2009

Dr. John Butler’s Electro-Massage Machine

I found this article in the Scientific American. Absolutely hilarious. (And the poster is a gem too.)

One of the first electrical appliances made its way into the home as a purported medical device. For a sex toy, the vibrator’s roots seem amazingly antiseptic and clinical. Prescribed as a cure for the curious disease hysteria, the device for decades found clinical application as a supposed medical therapy.

Derived from the Greek word for “uterus,” hysteria occurred in women with pent-up sexual energy—or so healers and early physicians believed. Nuns, widows and spinsters were particularly susceptible, but by the Victorian era many married women had fallen prey as well. In the late 19th century a pair of prominent physicians estimated that three quarters of American women were at risk.

The prescription of clitoral orgasm as a treatment for hysteria dates to medical texts from the first century A.D. Hysterical women typically turned to doctors, who cured them with their hands by inducing a “paroxysm”—a term that hides what we now know as a sexual climax. But manual stimulation was time-consuming and (for the doctors at least) tedious. In The Technology of Orgasm: “Hysteria,” the Vibrator and Women’s Sexual Satisfaction, science historian Rachel P. Maines reports that physicians often passed the job off to midwives.

The invention of electricity made the task easier. Joseph Mortimer Granville patented an electromechanical vibrator in the early 1880s to relieve muscle aches, and doctors soon realized it might be used on other parts of the body. That innovation shortened treatment time for hysteria, fattening doctors’ wallets.

Patients were happy, too. The number of health spas offering vibration therapy multiplied, and the service was so popular vibrator manufacturers warned doctors not to overdo it with the modern appliance: if they met relentless patient demand, even mechanical vibration could be tiring. By the turn of the century needlework catalogues advertised models for women who wanted to try the treatment at home, making the vibrator the fifth electric appliance to arrive in the home—after the sewing machine, the fan, the teakettle and the toaster.

The vibrator’s legitimacy as a medical device declined after the 1920s, when Sigmund Freud correctly identified paroxysm as sexual. In 1952 the American Psychiatric Association dropped hysteria from its list of recognized conditions. When the vibrator was again popularized years later, women no longer needed the pretense of illness to justify a purchase.

Friday, 30 October 2009

New Life, New Life

On Wednesday, I set the ball rolling for what is to become my new life.
I've started to apply for Universities, and started researching what I have to do, in order to start this prospective new life of mine.
For years I have been looking forward and obsessing about moving to London. I know the city like the back of my hand, yet nothing terrifies me more. Despite being a frequent visitor I've previously viewed city as my playground, but now that I'm looking at London through the eyes of a potential student and future resident, it couldn't be more alien to me.
I'm terrified that I won't get into the University I want, I'm terrified that when I get there I will run out of money and be cast onto the streets, and even though I have lots of friends there, I'm terrified of feeling alone.
So now, t-minus 10 months to go and the stress is already mounting. I'm going to need as much help as I can get.


Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Display Purpose Only

Under the Motorway
suspended in Air
Outlived thier Purpose
forever Displayed.

Rebel rebel

Last night I grew tired of walking. I climbed upon the bendy bus.
I understand why people can't stand these ridiculous looking vehicles: Not only are they a disaster to look at, they're a pain to get around when driving in traffic. Not to mention, the fact that you can climb onto the back without having to flash a ticket to the driver means that many take advantage and just don't pay.
See, by nature I'm very bad at being a "rebel" (I also see the term as very outdated, I just can't think of any other word that would fit at the moment). Even the other day, while purchasing a calzone and coffee from a chain notorious for ripping off its customers, the girl at the counter had forgotten to actually charge me for the pizza roll. Instead of running with this, I was quick to correct her. I just can't deal with guilt, even when it's minimal and silly.
Anyway, I didn't have the change on me for the bus. So I did what most of my friends do on a regular basis and just hopped on anyway. In doing so, my only thought was This is going to be that one time when the cops run on board and make everyone hold up their tickets and Oysters and I will be left empty handed which in turn will be RED handed and I'll be arrested and shipped away to some defunct transit prison!!!!!
Of course such thoughts quickly leave when I realize, Hey, I'm totally getting away with this. I'm riding the bus for FREE. Screw you Boris!
A few stops later, though, my face froze in horror. Two stout ladies in ugly neon uniform quickly boarded the bus. FUCK!, I thought, It's bloody rush hour! Of course they're going to do routine checks!
They headed in my direction. I whipped out my mobile phone and started ghost texting, as to not make eye contact or seem too awkward. I heard some mumbling coming from one of their walkie-talkies. They grew closer. I felt my face turning bright red. My heart was in my throat. I almost wanted to cry out I'LL PAY THE FINE PLEASE END THIS TORTURE!
Thankfully, I didn't. They passed by me and headed towards a man in the back. There was quite a commotion, I suppose they were hunting him down specifically. During their confrontation, I pressed the "Stop Here" button and jumped off. I only managed to reach halfway to my destination, but I was content with dragging my legs the rest of the journey. I have learned.

Sunday, 18 October 2009


Walking in the dark I try hard to ignore the feeling that someone, or somthing is watching, judging.

With each step comes the overwhelming sensation that I am getting forever closer to the eternal abyss, the point of no return, the moment each of us must face.

As I look ahead nothing stares back, there is no consciousness, good or evil to give purpose and no comfort to be found in the emptiness for that which lies ahead.
I am greeted only by a foreboding pressure which tightens as I advance......

Matthew Suter

Saturday, 10 October 2009

'UNION' Jack.

The EDL is also expected to gather there at about 5pm.
Police issued a stern message to troublemakers.

Ch Supt Gerry Donnellan, of Greater Manchester Police (GMP), said:

"If people come to Manchester to protest they are legally entitled to do so. As soon as they step over the line between lawful protest then we will be taking positive action against those individuals. If you are going to come to Manchester and think you can get away with shouting racist, inflammatory remarks, you can expect us to respond."

For the first time in my life I was scared of walking through Manchester alone, and I've had a knife pulled out on me before and wasn't fazed, I've walked through a Rangers Football riot that looked like an apocolypse before but today the atmosphere was Tense. Tactical Units and Police Horses littered the roads.

I got out of work and turned the corner, three guys with Union Jack flags on their shirts stared me straight in the eye with a sharp glint of disgust.

"Hmmmm, interesting."
I would wear that flag with just as much pride, the difference is: Your hatred is only going to result in self-consumation. Are you absolutley sure your pure breed?

Meh, Fuck 'Em.
And with that thought I skipped off home with my head held high.


Lust lust lust

(More paintings)

Is it weird to find these guys to be so attractive?

Also, if you have the chance: Check out the Gay Icons exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery. It's a fiver to get in, but it's worth it, and it's in its closing days. The photo of Joe they've been using for the ads is reason enough...

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

The Emblems of Tragedy

Lately I have been at a low point, where I wasn't feeling inspired by anything. I live in an area full of culture and arts but felt a bit lost. There are so many people around here that put their whole selves into what they do, whether it be music, paintings, sculptures, films, any of that. But there is also a crowd bound with a pretentious mentality. Whether it's those who believe they're the next big thing, or those just jumping on the band wagon. I just haven't felt enough genuine passion lately.
This past week I have turned into something of a tourist, even though I live in London. I have family visiting, one person in particular has never been in this city before. We've been going to see as many galleries, museums and exhibitions as possible (especially the free ones).
I have been living here since June, and I have taken in a lot of the art scene but more so the east end sort of thing. The only major museum I had visited was the V&A Museum of Childhood for its Roald Dahl exhibition. I hadn't really thought about the bigger places.
Seeing modern art at Tate (like the Warhol room) was spectacular. The Natural History museum took almost four hours, and then we followed that up with the Science Museum (who have the most amazing Wallace and Gromit themed exhibit... it's not just for children!)
BUT! It wasn't until we reached the National Portrait Gallery that I really started to take everything in. I suppose I have a bit of ADD with galleries sometimes, in the sense that I don't appreciate everything as much as I should. I sort of zip through rooms sometimes, only aiming to see a certain peice. It's a bad habit, and I don't mean to act ignorant. I am just not an art buff by any means. I can't see what's special about a blank canvas with some blue lines on it.
Anyway, the National Portrait Gallery. I was already excited with seeing a full sized version of Blur's "Greatest Hits" cartoons. The Twiggy collection was classic and there was a slightly creepy painting of Paul McCartney's face. It wasn't until I reached the more historic pieces that I became completely entranced.
One in particular that struck me was learning about an actress named Sarah Siddons. I found this portrait in particular to be so haunting. I just wanted to look at it for hours.

Sarah Siddons was a famous actress from the late 1700's to the early 1800's. I had never heard of her before I found her pictures but I find her to be so captivating. I feel as if I understand even just from paintings why she was such an important figure. Which is exactly what the artist wanted, I'm sure.

We also took a look in the National Gallery. We spent about two and a half hours in there and I still need to go back because we didn't get to see everything. The oldest paintings in particular were the most captivating. Many of them religious, but their textiles, especially those painted on gold leaf, were breathtaking.
This was another favourite discovery. It's from the year 1468.

All I want to do now is paint, sketch, sing, create a ridiculously lavish set and pose for someone else! Anything.
It has been so long since I have felt this inspired, creatively speaking.
I am certainly not taking these places for granted from now on.

Always and Consistant.

...then I play my guitar and everything doesn't seem so bad anymore.
Playing a riff that uplifts and makes me happy.
Plucking minor chords to calm me down.
Striking a whirl of barre chords when I'm angry.
Sometimes I can't believe the range of sounds I get when I let my mind wander.
My guitar is and will always be my first love,
forget the guys I cried over and yearn after.
My guitar makes my heart sing and fills me with wonder. Always.


Friday, 2 October 2009

The Fox's Cry

The Fox's Cry flies through the sky,
Like a missile through the hart
Like one ready to die with no alibi
Like an arrow it pierces the dark