"It was about sex, you moron!"

I'm taking a creative poetry class this semester. I'm doing this because:

1) I know the teacher and his classes are fun or at least allow for the use of humor.
B) I needed an extra elective
III) Why the hell not?

One day, the class was tasked to make a "collage" poem. A "collage" poem is basically a poem that is either constructed from things other people have said or constructed from newspaper headlines. Naturally, I took the more interesting option and looked up funny newspaper headlines to make into a 3 line poem. Here's what I came up with. (Keep in mind, each line is an actual, unedited Newspaper headline)

Prostitutes Appeal to Pope
Stud Tires Out
Soviet Virgin Lands Short of Goal Again

Usually, we go through a class by analyzing everyone's various poems in turn, looking for things we liked and things we thought needed improvement. When we got to my tiny poem, the professor paused the discussion to ask everyone what they thought the poem was about.

I sat there for about fifteen minutes as people talked about the Pope trying to sanctify young prostitutes to save their souls or about how the Soviet regime fell apart. Finally, the professor just cracked and exclaimed, "it's about sex!"

He beat me to it. I thought I had created a barely veiled allusion to the idea of prostitutes trying to chat up the pope but everyone gracefully tried to skirt around it.

Why? Maybe I'm just insane but I thought we lived in a day and age where people could talk about sex openly without fear of persecution. Maybe my class is genuinely prudish. Still, I can't help but feel like this is not the first time I've seen or heard of people trying to desperately evade sexual imagery or references. The whole idea baffles me. Why are there those who live in fear of sexual references? What is there to be afraid of?

I don't think it's about sex being a persecution worthy topic, but it's still kind of uncomfortable for some people to talk about. You know, the sweet innocent girl doesn't want to reveal she's hornier than a spike, or something like that

Or it could just be that everyone was being really pretentious about it and over analyzing it[1]

[1] For this specific example

Some people don't like it . For some as myself , sex is a private thing that i dislike speaking about to people other than my companion . Other are more liberal about it and there is nothin wrong with that . It's all about the individual , some people consider certain things unappropriate and others don't see the big deal .

I personally don't really discuss sex in a public setting , as i personally find it to be inappropriate , depending on the circumstances .

I dont know..I figured people assumed there was some kind of "meaning" to it, judging by the class and all

as for discussing sex...well that depends on the situation..usually I find it to be a private thing

you know...not that I have much to contribute on that topic

Hell... when I was with my ex, I would get embarressed talking about sex with her... it was always an unspoken agreement...

Obviously you don't know your own poems. Clearly it's about fans(prostitutes) whining to Bioware(the Pope) about the ending to ME3(tires out = cum = end!). The last part tells us that it's not going to happen.

I amaze myself sometimes.

OT: Personally I don't mind talking about sex, but it's still nothing I'd like to bring up into an every day conversation.

Maybe they though sex was too obvious, that you put a deeper meaning behind you work.

DanielBrown:
Obviously you don't know your own poems. Clearly it's about fans(prostitutes) whining to Bioware(the Pope) about the ending to ME3(tires out = cum = end!). The last part tells us that it's not going to happen.

I amaze myself sometimes.

That...that was brilliant.

We, as a species, have somehow become afraid of our genitals.

Humans are fucking silly creatures.

Vern5:
snip

What do you expect from humanity? a culture where things that have been taboo subjects off and on throughout history, even the functions of the human body can be comfortably and freely discussed?

Thing is....From what I've seen in myself, and the people around me, we have this way of letting our subconscious attach a sort of...repressed shame and/or disgust to things like eating certain foods, bodily functions (sex included), religious taboos..really anything that we feel isn't spoken of in public or that just 'isn't done'.

It seems like that sort of shame/disgust kind of...builds up the longer you don't genuinely try to break its hold on you.
It's something I think every human being has in common from birth: creating a social and cultural normality and before we realize how disgustingly flawed the idea of 'normal' and 'different' are, our subconscious starts identifying things outside of it to be shameful or disgusting.

Then these taboos are passed from generation to generation. without us even thinking about it we brand our children with our own inhibitions. it's sad. Terribly sad.

Even sadder is the fact that while we can often confront the lesser of these inhibitions and conquer them, the truly deep ones that have been engraved on our minds can be so brutally debilitating that years of therapy cannot undo them.

Iron Lightning:
We, as a species, have somehow become afraid of our genitals.

Have you LOOKED at a vagina? Or a penis for that matter? They look all sorts of freaky!

they're a ton of fun to play with, but still. freaky lookin.

Vern5:
I'm taking a creative poetry class this semester. I'm doing this because:

1) I know the teacher and his classes are fun or at least allow for the use of humor.
B) I needed an extra elective
III) Why the hell not?

One day, the class was tasked to make a "collage" poem. A "collage" poem is basically a poem that is either constructed from things other people have said or constructed from newspaper headlines. Naturally, I took the more interesting option and looked up funny newspaper headlines to make into a 3 line poem. Here's what I came up with. (Keep in mind, each line is an actual, unedited Newspaper headline)

Prostitutes Appeal to Pope
Stud Tires Out
Soviet Virgin Lands Short of Goal Again

Usually, we go through a class by analyzing everyone's various poems in turn, looking for things we liked and things we thought needed improvement. When we got to my tiny poem, the professor paused the discussion to ask everyone what they thought the poem was about.

I sat there for about fifteen minutes as people talked about the Pope trying to sanctify young prostitutes to save their souls or about how the Soviet regime fell apart. Finally, the professor just cracked and exclaimed, "it's about sex!"

He beat me to it. I thought I had created a barely veiled allusion to the idea of prostitutes trying to chat up the pope but everyone gracefully tried to skirt around it.

Why? Maybe I'm just insane but I thought we lived in a day and age where people could talk about sex openly without fear of persecution. Maybe my class is genuinely prudish. Still, I can't help but feel like this is not the first time I've seen or heard of people trying to desperately evade sexual imagery or references. The whole idea baffles me. Why are there those who live in fear of sexual references? What is there to be afraid of?

no i think that they just interpreted more meaning into it than you'd ever would had included.

its something that always happens.

to the talk openly about sex:
sex is still an intimate theme and thing to do.
it has become better and more openly than it was before but people still would not like to talk about it with total strangers in detail.
they might just brag about how they totally f***ed that girl/guy/thing but only to people they somewhat know.

it would be really weird if a complete stranger just came up to you and told you how he totally nailed that chick senseless.

Zen Toombs:

Iron Lightning:
We, as a species, have somehow become afraid of our genitals.

Have you LOOKED at a vagina? Or a penis for that matter? They look all sorts of freaky!

they're a ton of fun to play with, but still. freaky lookin.

To quote Waiting...
"It's so angry!, Oh GOD does that thing have its shots? Put it away! Just put it away!"

OT: I have no idea why people don't like talking about sex, I mean I won't talk about my personal sex life, but I have no problem talking about sex in classes or something like that.

Vern5:
Why? Maybe I'm just insane but I thought we lived in a day and age where people could talk about sex openly without fear of persecution. Maybe my class is genuinely prudish. Still, I can't help but feel like this is not the first time I've seen or heard of people trying to desperately evade sexual imagery or references. The whole idea baffles me. Why are there those who live in fear of sexual references? What is there to be afraid of?

I made a thread about sex recently. I think it is unhealthy to shove such an important aspect of humanity into the closet and to say 'we'll talk about that when it comes up'. I am kind of glad the Escapist is open enough to talk about the subject. Of course, its the only thing the guys back in my hometown would talk about...

Moo!

I'm a professor of Musicology at a university. I do popular music studies. Regularly the songs we talk about in class deal with sex--either explicitly or through metaphor.

After we listen to a song in class, I open up the conversation by asking, "What is this song about? What are you hearing?"

I find, at least for the first month or so, my students are really shy about talking about sex in class. For example take the song by Mae West, "I Like a Guy What Takes His Time"

Lyrics (Note: Mae West moans quite a lot while singing this song, and the trombone is positively filthy)
A guy what takes his time, I'll go for any time
I'm a fast movin' gal who likes them slow
Got no use for fancy drivin', want to see a guy arrivin' in low.
I'd be satisfied, electrified to know a guy what takes his time

A hurry-up affair, I always give the air
Wouldn't give any rushin' gent a smile.
I would go for any singer who would condescend to linger awhile
What a lullaby would be supplied to have a guy what takes his time

A guy what takes his time, I'd go for any time
A hasty job really spoils a master's touch
I don't like a big commotion, I'm a demon for slow motion or such
Why should I deny that I would die to know a guy who takes his time

There isn't any fun in getting something done
If you're rushed when you have to make the grade
I can spot an amateur, appreciate a connesseur in his trade
Who would qualify, no alibi, to be the guy who takes his time

So I ask, what is this song about? No one seems to have anything to say. Until I finally get them to open up.
Is it because my students are prudes? No. These are students who listen to crazy sexually explicit music and who run doing whatever. The hesitation--my best guess--is that while they feel comfortable talking about sex amongst themselves, they feel uncomfortable talking about sex, drugs, etc while in class in front of a professor.

They get over it. Because we are talking about the historical the in sexual attitudes during the 1920s and 1930s using Mae West (and many others) as a sonic example...so there is an academic reason why we are talking about sexual attitudes.

TL:DR -- I'd say your fellow students aren't prudes, they just don't want to talk about sex in front of their professor.

Sure you can be uncomfortable with discussing sex, but being oblivious to it is just retarded. And there IS such a thing as being TOO sensitive. My language teacher told me about how one of his colleagues down in Texas almost got the school sued because one of the female students complained to her parents when he MENTIONED the word "breasts". And this was a UNIVERSITY the guy was teaching. And the parents had actually moved there from California.

At some point people just have to GROW THE FUCK UP!

Iron Lightning:
We, as a species, have somehow become afraid of our genitals.

Humans are fucking silly creatures.

I think thats what makes them such interesting creatures. I dont think I will ever understand why people turn into such prudes when you start talking about fucking though.

Zen Toombs:

Iron Lightning:
We, as a species, have somehow become afraid of our genitals.

Have you LOOKED at a vagina?

It looks like a stab wound and an asshole looks like a puncture wound.

To be honest with you, I didn't really catch it the first time through. The first line made me laugh, but I didn't connect the dots until you told me and I went back to look. So I could see misreading the poem being the reason they couldn't figure it out. That was really creative though! I liked it!

Literature students reading too much into something. Well bugger me sideways...

It's called "Being Too Obvious". No one wanted to state the painfully obvious explanation.

At least, I HOPE that's what the problem was.

Matthew94:
It looks like a stab wound and an asshole looks like a puncture wound.

I guess that's where the slang terms "gash" and "axe wound" for the vagina comes from.

The problem is that people in creative classes always tend to look for a hidden meaning that doesn't really exist. Captcha: namby-pamby

So basically you gave them a meaningless poem, asked them to make meaning of it, and got angry they didnt?

I think there is too much talk about sex. not that it must be hidden. its simply a subject that does not deserve such attention. its an act that satisfy a person. so is eating. why do we single out sex? are there no other subjects that people are interested in nowadays that everything has to be about sex? if i were to get a dollar every time i heard somone say "it would be a good movie if there were nude scenes" id be able to afford to hire a hitman for all of them.

Strazdas:
So basically you gave them a meaningless poem, asked them to make meaning of it, and got angry they didnt?

I think there is too much talk about sex. not that it must be hidden. its simply a subject that does not deserve such attention. its an act that satisfy a person. so is eating. why do we single out sex?

Because sex is a lot better than eating. A LOT.

(Well, I guess a really good steak might be better, but eh...)

SmashLovesTitanQuest:

Because sex is a lot better than eating. A LOT.

(Well, I guess a really good steak might be better, but eh...)

Can't i like both equally? I love my food damn it!

OT: I was following it until the last line, which confused me a bit. Since when were prostitutes virgins again? XD

Either that or the students didnt know eachother well enough yet. It happens, they may open up more later on. Its a more personal subject, not exactly the best converstation starter...

The class you mentioned probably has you looking for all sorts of meanings within everything you look at so the obvious is overlooked. Almost every poem you study has a double meaning. A walk through a park has to represent a journey through emotions or life or something. So your obvious sex poem would have probably been looked at as having deeper meaning than you intended.

Matthew94:

Zen Toombs:

Iron Lightning:
We, as a species, have somehow become afraid of our genitals.

Have you LOOKED at a vagina?

It looks like a stab wound and an asshole looks like a puncture wound.

Yes they do. Thanks for ruining the 3rd last vice in my life. Sex will never happen again for me.

O/T Do like how the the prof just throws it into the open. Shame I wasn't in that class. Thats a perfect time to do the M&M dance.

I personally think it's because in a creatively educational department, appealing to sex, fantasy, or violence is considered the easy way out. If you're supposed to write a ten-page story and five of your pages are a sex scene, you will be laughed out of the class.

Really, the assignment sounds ridiculous and your professor sounds immature in a bad way for an educator. It seems like you made the most of what you were given.

trooper6:
I'm a professor of Musicology at a university. I do popular music studies. Regularly the songs we talk about in class deal with sex--either explicitly or through metaphor.

After we listen to a song in class, I open up the conversation by asking, "What is this song about? What are you hearing?"

I find, at least for the first month or so, my students are really shy about talking about sex in class. For example take the song by Mae West, "I Like a Guy What Takes His Time"

Lyrics (Note: Mae West moans quite a lot while singing this song, and the trombone is positively filthy)
A guy what takes his time, I'll go for any time
I'm a fast movin' gal who likes them slow
Got no use for fancy drivin', want to see a guy arrivin' in low.
I'd be satisfied, electrified to know a guy what takes his time

A hurry-up affair, I always give the air
Wouldn't give any rushin' gent a smile.
I would go for any singer who would condescend to linger awhile
What a lullaby would be supplied to have a guy what takes his time

A guy what takes his time, I'd go for any time
A hasty job really spoils a master's touch
I don't like a big commotion, I'm a demon for slow motion or such
Why should I deny that I would die to know a guy who takes his time

There isn't any fun in getting something done
If you're rushed when you have to make the grade
I can spot an amateur, appreciate a connesseur in his trade
Who would qualify, no alibi, to be the guy who takes his time

So I ask, what is this song about? No one seems to have anything to say. Until I finally get them to open up.
Is it because my students are prudes? No. These are students who listen to crazy sexually explicit music and who run doing whatever. The hesitation--my best guess--is that while they feel comfortable talking about sex amongst themselves, they feel uncomfortable talking about sex, drugs, etc while in class in front of a professor.

They get over it. Because we are talking about the historical the in sexual attitudes during the 1920s and 1930s using Mae West (and many others) as a sonic example...so there is an academic reason why we are talking about sexual attitudes.

TL:DR -- I'd say your fellow students aren't prudes, they just don't want to talk about sex in front of their professor.

i'd say it goes further than just in front of the professor and more overarching to the social situations in that some situations are more formal and you have to act differently in.

Vern5:
Why are there those who live in fear of sexual references? What is there to be afraid of?

Are you sure it was fear? It's a poetry class, right? Which means it's going to be full of pretentious arty types trying to out-intellectualize each other. Nobody wanted to be the der-brain who thought that your clever work of art was about something as "mundane" as sex.

 

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