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JWR 2.3 - Dick Stick

 

Well, Iíve been thinking about complaining.  Youíll be happy to know that Iíve decided to not do such a thing.  Jeff will be especially happy.  Jeff.  God.

 

So I was flipping through the channels the other day past crap sitcoms and crap dramas and crap TV movies and crap music videos until I landed on the Travel Channel.  No, it wasnít Best Vacation Homes hosted by Sam Brown--I wish!  It was a documentary on the Yali tribes of Papa New Guinea.  And you thought all I watched was wrestling.  Pshaw.

 

I think what caught my attention was when the narrator said ďCannibalism.Ē  He said as recently as 1969 a pair of missionaries were killed and eaten.  Yet you have camera crews freely taping and interfering.  I guess you could make the generalization that cannibals do not like Jesus.  Yeah, cannibals and Romans.

 

Ever since The Gods Must Be Crazy, starring N!Xau (pronounced da-click-xa), the idea of living in a desert or a jungle has not appealed to me.  I just canít give up my shoes with the lights inside.  Those things are so cool.  As I walk, they light up.  You can follow me in the dark.  You canít follow N!Xau in the dark.

 

Thereís this one crazy aussie, Alby Mangles, who travels mainly through Australia with a camera crew doing some things like the Crocodile Hunter, but Alby mainly meets people, not reptiles.  Anyway, heíll always wax philosophical about leaving his life and just living out in the outback on his own, off the land.  I saw this one episode where he met up with this American who left his city life a few years back to live on his own like Tom Hanks in Cast Away.  Man, was that guy creepy.  He stuttered and was all twitchy, especially around other people since he spent the majority of his recent life alone or limited time with the Aborigines.  But youíll hear Albyís accented voiceover talk about the beauty of the land and the wonderful simplicity of the people.

 

Which is very true.  Untouched land is some of the most beautiful you will ever see.  And the people who live in such a culture where they donít have cars or computers or cell phones or movies or Hollywood or a j-o-b job are, indeed, simpler and happier.  Think about the things that make you unhappy and you can trace the root back to the way we learned to look upon ourselves and others by out societal norms.  (I swear, I could have done so well in sociology.  Itís just common sense with multi syllabic words to describe what these things are--euphemisms, Stacy.)  Yali and Bushmen donít have our societal norms.  For example, you think youíre fat?  Well, why, because you donít look like a supermodel with long, slim extremities and supple, perky breasts and a GREAT ASS! and me, with my head all the way up it?  Ferocious, arenít I?  Something comes over me when I think of a womanís ass.  Whoo-ah.  But (butt...ha!), because you donít look like a one-named model who makes fifty thousand Canadian dollaredoos a day, you may get to thinking that youíre not as good as her.  Okay, itís been the topic of many a movie and how many girls from your high school attempted suicide because the were ďtoo fatĒ or ďtoo uglyĒ?  Well, I went to school with about three hundred girls in my class and I donít know how many attempted suicide because of those reasons, so Iím not the one to ask.  Maybe Mr. Visor the counselor, míkay?  Now, if you had, say, three people in your graduating class, you may have a better idea.  Back on track, weíre supposed to feel bad because we donít fit the preset mold?  36-24-36: no.  6-pack: no.  Blond hair, blue eyes: no.  Make Hollywood and models disappear and who would tell you how to look?  Youíd all look how you looked.  You look at the ladies from the tribes?  Theyíre not very attractive.  Theyíre not uniformly skinny or chubby, no bras mean you sag a LOT.  No hair salons means that not only do you have to do your own hair, but you canít dye, highlight, bleach, frost...No clothes means no girls crying because they canít buy racist Tommy Hilfiger styles.  No makeup means you look like you look.  Nothing to hide behind.

 

Take away your job that helps other people then yourself get richer and you have your whole day free.  Letís not bullshit, you have a job because itís how you make money to buy the things you no longer do or make.  The money you make prostituting or whatever yourself goes to buy food so you donít have to grow, cultivate or kill or raise your own, gas and electricity so you donít have to live in a hot place or cut down trees to burn or burn dung for heat, clothes so you donít have to shear your own wool or pick your own cotton and weave them into a strand and then knit them into clothes or skin an animal to make itís skin into a pelt, housing so you donít have to construct your own shanty, lean-to, shack, bungalow, hovel.  Emerson said all you needed was food, shelter and clothing.  Emerson was right.  Or was it Thoreau?  One of those crackers.  Without your job, or without the whole job structure, all people would work to benefit the community.  Farming, hunting, gathering, weaving, building all together and then you can play your reindeer games until the sun goes down.

 

And if you donít work, you get eaten.  Eaten like a two dollar--no, a fifty cent--no, a buy one, get one free, does-anyone-have-change-for-a-nickel? trash bag hoe.

 

So thereís drawbacks to living in the Yali tribe.  Oh, my God, buddy, I havenít even told you the horrible part yet...

 

The men in the Yali tribe...and all I wanted was an explanation for this when I turned it on.  See, the Yali donít wear clothes.  The women wear neck bags that go across the tops of their heads and hang behind them and kind of a pouch in front.  The guys sometimes wear a slinky-like thing around their torsos (and their best hoops on special occasions like weddings) and the only thing that keeps if from slinkying all the way to the ground, as far as I can tell, is the penis gourd.

 

What is a penis gourd, you ask?  Well, basically, they grow these gourds for the sole purpose of wearing.  They pick the gourd, heat it up, take the insides out, dry the shell over a fire and you have a penis gourd.  Before they explained it, we were trying to see how in the hell it stayed on and in itís rigid upwardly angle.  Not to beat around the bush, the hollow gourd, sometimes three feet in length, goes over the penis much like a rigid condom, and no, Jeff, these will not flush down a toilet.  Now, they donít walk around with a constant erection so the hour hand pointing at two is accomplished with the use of thin bark, almost rope-like, that ties to the end of the penis gourd and attaches to the waist of the guy.  Itís tough to see so it looks like thereís this protruding, thin mass where a penis should be.

 

The really interesting thing is Yali men donít know why the tradition began, what it accomplishes or signifies, but without the penis gourd, or dick stick as I have taken to calling it (euphemism), they would feel naked.  Never mind the fact that the scrotum (or ball sac) hangs freely.  No, thatís not embarrassing in the least.  Penis gourd swinging one way, balls swinging the other.

 

The Yali men were helping one of theirs in making a home.  They gathered planks and more strips of bark.  The skeleton was tied together because they have no nails.  And I had to think a three-foot penis gourd must get in the way as you work.  God knows I have troubles sometimes, you know what Iím saying?  I thought it would be funny if one guy tried to get up only to discover he had tied his penis gourd to the house.  ďHey, Mac, help me out, I tied my dick stick to your house.Ē  ďWell, itís mine now--the dick stick, not--Ē

 

Yes, and the penis gourds break easily, which is why you got to have a few on hand, in stock.

 

The program was rated TV-M.  For mature audiences--17 and over.  Because of violence.  They showed a mock battle, kind of a training scenario if a rival tribe invaded.  It was pretty weak.  Not because of the nudity.  So, the naked bodies arenít really nudity.  Thereís no warning that says ďThis program contains breasts and ball sacs not to mention a shit load of booty.Ē   No, it didnít.  You could make the argument that the Yali donít consider it nudity because they donít have Donna Karen fashions to cover up with.  Sounds pretty good, their culture says nothing is wrong with butt and breast and scrotum, so you can show it on TV--they donít say anything about TV, thatís us talking.  So, then, by that rationale, you could televise what goes on in a strip club because they donít see anything wrong with their nudity.  So, it canít be that reason.

 

I think it would have to go with intent.  You can show the Yali as they are in everyday life breasts and sacs and all because theyíre out tilling the field or chopping down trees or making a hut; theyíre not gyrating on some guyís lap for twenty dollaredoos.  They just donít show that part.  I saw a pregnancy on TLC one time.  They got the camera right up in there and, man, was that icky.  Youíd think I could come up with a better word than ďicky,Ē but naah, icky it was.  Thatís why guys stand behind the head of their wife or whatever, so they donít have to see the baby plop out and all everything else that falls out.  And it does.  Itís a miracle if itís your kid, I think.  You canít just be walking by and all of a sudden see some lady giving birth and youíre hit with, ďOh, itís such a miracle.Ē  Nuh-uh, mcNasty.  With cheese.

 

Speaking of...I'm pretty hungry.  Think I'll make myself some mac 'n' cheese.

 

John

 

Copyright © 2001 John Lemut