All these Slutty Mouths and Noses, Fully Exposed in Trader Joe’s-es
Have you ever noticed how sexy, gross, beautiful, or vulgar mouths can be?
From birth we were desensitized to the flagrant displays of other people’s mouths. Many of us never gave it a second thought as people spoke and ate, breathed or sang, pursed and licked their lips, right in front of us. We shared their air and looked their mouths dead on.
Then the Covid pandemic hit and everyone who wasn’t a jackoff went masked in public spaces. Masks, in non-jackoff spaces, became the norm. For more than a year our minds were retrained, some of us compensated for our covered mouths with more emotionally meaningful eye movements and mimetic physical gestures to express ourselves, and we grew accustomed to mouths being hidden.
In recent weeks and months, in less jackoff areas as the jackoff ones jumped the gun long ago, as restrictions began to be relaxed or lifted, and mouths began to reappear, they returned with theretofore underappreciated significance, as objects either of allure or repulsion. It’s not just that during the heavy masking period we all began imagining that we were able to see people’s breath as if it were a noxious tangible presence from which we had to recoil and dodge around, but that mouths themselves became so unfamiliar, became even taboo. Suddenly we all realized that the human mouth (and nose) had in a sense been relegated to a status similar to that held by breasts and butts, if not vaginas and penises.
Realizing this, we’ve all had the thought that perhaps orthodox Muslim women who wear niqabs have been onto something. Though we also then questioned what exactly it was they’ve been on to, because the thing is, mouths, and noses, and hair, and everything else that is covered by a facial veil is made more alluring by its being covered. Putting aside that even when women make the personal choice to wear any kind of covering, which is their right and must be respected, it is still a practice rooted in patriarchy and misogyny, and springs from the idea that men are such helpless rutting idiot beasts that it is the responsibility of women to conceal from them potential temptations, covering things up, making anything more secret or hidden, adds to its allure, its taboo appeal. Whether a good or bad thing, that virtually any part of a person can be deemed erotic or vulgar and covered for that reason, is open to interpretation.
This of course led us all to think about the virtues of nudism. While certain body parts will always be arousing or repulsive, our puritanical covering of particular parts has only made them more so. While some may assume that nudists are nothing but a bunch of horndogs who want to live in perpetual hairy hippy orgies, this is rarely the case. For the most part, nudists are simply more comfortable with their bodies and those of others, more comfortable with being human, because in removing the taboo against nudity they desensitize themselves to the appearance of all body parts. If we let go of our Judeo-Christian-European body shaming, and eschewed our shirts and pants, we’d be as well adjusted as them, no longer obsessed with tits and asses.
By medical necessity, we covered our mouths, and in the relative aftermath (it’s not over, but a lot of folks are acting like it is), the reappearance of mouths has been akin to public nudity. Naturally, we are all a bit flustered. I, like literally all of you, have wrestled with these thoughts and the reappearances of human mouths. When certain people speak and breathe unmasked in my direction, I all but jump back, away from the germs spewing forth from their vulgar facial holes, and have to resist the urge to roundhouse kick them in the mouth. When other certain people speak to me unmasked, I have to resist the urge to leap the space, plant my own vulgar facial hole flush against theirs and swap every germ we have. Whether I wanted to kick someone’s mouth or kiss it, the novel impulse was powerful. I know you have felt it too. I am here with you. We will become accustomed to people’s naked, slutty mouths again. But it will take time. Be strong.