Two scorching-hot, rod-iron pokers tipped with Vienna sausages to shove up my ass, please, and maybe another caustic drink to further blunt my numb-down-theres. To absolutely nobody’s surprise and amazement, Nude Nite – Orlando’s perfunctory tip-toe through its pubic erogenous zone, ruffled dress all aflutter – is upon us again, this year promising even more sensual erosion upon its naughty premise of stillborn, still-life sexuality all dressed up as something “to do.” Guess what? It’s Saturday and I need something to do.
“What am I going to wear?” Karen breathes heavily into my portable sex hotline.
“Ha, nothing, ha,” etc.
I got a cucumber-and-bleach taste of what to expect when I inadvertently stumbled upon something of a Nude Nite launch party at the Peacock Room earlier in the week; I thought I had fallen into somebody’s office key-party trap or a romance-novel book club. Ratty-haired matrons of menopause and probable seashell sculptures threw their heads back in pink-lipsticked, patterned-blouse rapture, while I tied a balloon around my head and discussed the mass production of Billy Manes dolls – basically Barbies with hair-chops filed down to virtual sexlessness – with lovable mushroom Doug Rhodehamel. There was little coital enterprise and hardly even a hangover.
Tonight, with Karen adjacent to my plastic breastlessness, I’m anticipating even less.
“But there’s a line around the block,” Karen’s breasts bounce against each other, taste like chicken and make the sound of the ocean.
“I don’t do lines,” I sniff, smelling nothing.
We’re whisked in like legendary porn stars, assured that the mayor has just left, and pressed into the Pink Floyd meat grinder of a “cultural” night out in Orlando. Limbs and joints are rattling against each other, wafts of cologne and perfume are mingling in close-quartered toxicity, music is blaring, Ron Jon T-shirts are stretching and we’ll all be served on a white-bread roll later, with ketchup. Or jelly.
“Is that all there is?” I Peggy Lee, while doing some sort of cinematographic pivot-twirl to take it all in. Unfortunately, no.
Up on a few blocks approximating a runway, the catchall performance art of the Drip people is about to wow another unpleasant low-end social mixer. Donning nude-colored body-wraps, a duo of one girl and one gay bandana shift their midlevel Martha Graham takes on interpretive dance to something decidedly new-agey and tribal. Soon after, the girl reaches into what looks like a hornet’s nest (but is probably a prop-womb) to cover herself with red jelly (which is probably prop-placenta); the bandana follows suit, but there is no jelly left, leaving his already middling Drip to drop. Oh, Orlando.
I want to be born again … somewhere else.
“You have to give me a confession before you get a piece of my candy,” sweets a nun with a habit and a tray full of penis and booby confections.
“I confess that earlier I masturbated all over a nun costume,” an obligatory drunk man falls to his knees. “Is that enough?”
“I have to pee,” Karen drips a little, pulling us deeper into the fray and then leaving me unattended like an unfisted jelly womb. I am open season.
“Have you seen the topography of a vagina?” The worst words ever invade my ear cavities, while an arm attached to hair-extensions grabs my hand. It’s real estate agent Kelly Stevens’ hair and arm, both of which have apparently been instrumental in assembling this strangely cock-blocking voyeurism installation. She drags me just past an older man and his exposed-to-be-sculpted Vienna sausage and into some antiseptic projection room or abortion closet. On the wall are continents covered in pubic hair.
“It looks like Three Mile Island,” I cringe. “And it looks like hurt.”
“There are 64 black-and-white slides of a vagina,” she gashes. “They’re done by Keith Pomeroy. You have to read his artist’s statement.”
Only if it’s written on the inside of my eyelids and laced with tranquilizers. Kelly goes on to gossip about this past event organizer and that embezzlement, effectively lining the path of her house-selling, culture-swilling C.V. with jewel-enhanced water features. She carves some artful distinction between naked and nude, and I start to fade away. To be fair, she’s trying. To be not fair, I’m not.
“Have you considered an installation chronicling the topography of my asshole?” I fart. “Or, how’s about a semen waterslide!”
Ah, slippery slopes. A club kid situation appears in what Marilyn Manson might have called a naughty nurse outfit in 1997, and frankly I’m bored. This is how parents in Florida expect their kids to look at 17 now. If they don’t, their kids are either smart or on drugs … or both.
Karen rejoins me just in time for us to shake the sex-promotion spin and tumble into the sexless governmental one. Patty Sheehan is here with her girlfriend, Joss, and they’re both fully clothed. I ask why, coyly.
“I can’t get naked,” Patty chastes. What does she mean? Is she a filed-down Barbie, too?
“Me neither,” I play along. “I’m numb down there.”
Skip the hot pokers. It’s time for a new metaphor.[email protected]