Looking Back on… The rant heard ’round the internet. (8/19/02)

Hello everybody, and welcome to Your Hot Cup of Rant. I’m your host, who you can endearingly refer to as Rantmaster Mark, or Mark, or Rantmaster, or even Betty. (If you don’t get that last one, watch better movies before you come back, I don’t know what to tell you.) Anyway, we as a collective are a group of whack jobs and shitheads devoted to giving you, yes YOU, reasons to fear for the sanity of the world at large. I am the site’s general content provider, moderator, editor, and general lord and master of all you presently survey. (This was the official “first post” on the actual site proper; I’m skipping a bunch of the archived email list rants because they’re tough, even for me, to get through.) Roll call works as follows:

S.W. Winchester is the webmaster. He makes sure the site stays up and that it’s updated. He might write something once in a while too, so stay tuned. (I do not believe that he ever did. Anyway he was my roommate at the time, and we were good friends for a while, before it became apparent that we weren’t two people who should be living in the same place at the same time. He’s basically moved elsewhere and is doing okay for himself as far as I know.)
Caillech is chief DVD reviewer, though she may throw reviews to other categories. (As mentioned prior, she’s one of my exes, and still a good friend.)
VideoXDrone is chief game reviewer, though he may throw reviews to other categories. (This is Mr. J. Rose, as we’ve mentioned before.)
Strykn is chief music reviewer, though he may throw reviews to other categories. (A former friend of ours collectively, no one really talks to him much anymore for reasons I don’t care to get into.)
And if you’re wondering, yes, I copy/pasted that and retyped the names/jobs. I’m lazy, but at least I admit it. Besides, there’s descriptions on the cast page, so there you go. (I might eventually repost everyone’s original cast pictures, as much for my own amusement as anything else, and to see how Mr. Rose’s art has evolved over the years. Don’t hold me to that though.)
DR. M.D. is our general ranter on things that irritate him and him alone. (Another former mutual friend, though we were never really friends, so much as I knew a bunch of people who were friends with him. He’s another person who just drifted out of the group.) My rant style is more one of passing along information, and trying to entertain while doing it. (For variable definitions of the word “entertain.”) He’s only out to entertain, and if he informs, bravo, have a drink. (I suspect most readers remained sober throughout.)
And finally, Exyt is out old crotchety bastard, who rants on anything he thinks up as it suits him. Call him the stream of consciousness writer. Oh, yeah, he’s offensive like you would not believe, so if he offends you, yell at him, not me. (Ah, yes, the other Marc. Still friends with him, to the extent that Facebook allows. His political posts are always interesting, though his friends fucking terrify me.)

Having gotten that out of the way, let’s get to the meat and potatoes: The definitive rant. The one that will be the first ever for the site, and the one that will define us to those reading this from now until the end of time. (Or about 2005, when the site originally shut down, anyway.) Please note, this rant will be up for the whole first week, as we work out the bugs in the site. (Also because I wasn’t terribly imaginative at that point and the video game industry wasn’t as pants-shittingly insane as it is now.) Also, no sense going on to the normal schedule just yet, as most of the above writers are lazy bastards and haven’t DONE anything yet. (No, I don’t know why I’m not friends with most of the people who used to work on the site with me, why do you ask?)

Alright, sex.

No, seriously, sex. I mean it. Stop laughing. (Were we supposed to be laughing because I was overweight or unappealing? I usually understand my own self-deprecating humor, but I don’t get that one.)

Sex is one of the most important things in life, bar none. (Says the twenty three year old. These days I’d say sleep is one of the most important things in life, and sex is somewhere in tenth place.) We dream about it, whole books and movies have been based on it, and it defines us as a people. Scott Adams (the writer of Dilbert) once said (and please note, I’m paraphrasing) “We as people are made up of three base emotions: Stupidity, selfishness, and horniness.” (He also explained that pets are better than people because you can contain them to stupidity and selfishness, so long as you get them fixed, which you can’t do with your friends without a lot of whining. Man, early Scott Adams, prior to all of the weird sexist controversies I don’t entirely understand because most of us stopped caring about him half a decade ago, was the best.) And really, besides the fact that I can’t put it better than that, that’s essentially correct. And since stupidity is too broad a subject to cover in one rant (it’s what MOST of the rants here are going to be about), (That’s debatable at best.) and selfishness is really more of a personal thing, not to mention boring as hell to write about, (That’s extremely debatable.) let’s go with horniness, or sex.

So, the other day, I was browsing the web. (Keep up here people, this is important) (No it isn’t, everyone browses the web.) I hit one of my favorite sites to visit, Exploitation Now, a comic about… um, stuff, (Ah, Exploitation Now, a webcomic that originally started out being about a drunk moogle and a chick who loved her tits, and ended up being about said chick’s sister and landlord going on secret agent adventures. The comic actually ended a couple weeks after this went live, amusingly enough, and after a few months I kind of realized that I hate it when creators decide their comic is going to be one thing, tire of that, and instead of wrapping it up and making something else just make the new thing over top of the old thing, because fuck the fans. This is why I never bothered to read another comic by Poe, the creator of the above, or David Willis, who appreciated that I liked Roomies so much that he made a comic where he joked that he was burning all the Roomies books in a fire, because fuck you for liking what I made. See, it’s different when I do it because no one who liked my original site is still around.)  and I notice they wrote a comic about something called a Real Doll. (It was originally that kind of comic.) Curious, I looked it up online, figuring it might just be a joke, or something really, really bizarre I could laugh about.

Oh, my sweet merciful Jesus. (I think we probably all know what Real Dolls are by now.)

Now I consider myself somewhat open-minded, in that I will usually tend to look at things from all possible perspectives before I make a judgment call, but Christ Almighty, this is a hard thing to lock on to. (It’s a silicone doll you can fuck, not the Higgs-Boson, dude.) Essentially, it’s the next logical (and I use that word loosely here) evolution to the blow-up doll. Made from movie-grade latex and silicone, the damn thing is essentially a substitute sex partner. (Well, some people are really ugly and/or lonely, but have a lot of money. Only the best, for your penis… or vagina since they now make male versions, but you can’t say “vagina” in a way that sounds like it rhymes with “best.” Priorities, man.) Now, there are so many problems here that it’s hard to find a place to start, but I think the most disturbing thing here is that they’re also selling it as an option to, say, artists who need a static model for one reason or another. Right. (On one hand, the dolls, at the time, had opposable joints, allowing posing and such, so if you needed a life-sized doll for artwork it was probably more useful than hiring a model every class. On the other hand, hahaha no, no one was buying this unless they were fucking it.) In addition, the damn think looks like it’s dead, which isn’t the most appealing thing to think about when you’re getting busy. (Says the guy who never saw Necromantic.) This might appeal to necrophiliacs, but otherwise it’s damn creepy. They also offer special pieces for the man who wants the most advanced blow-up doll on the market, ranging from closing eyes and flexible fingers, to a fucking NETWORK CABLE you plug into the goddamn thing’s ass (or some such orifice; I should think the ass would be open… ::shudder:: ) (I have no idea where the cable went but I’m guessing it didn’t work well, because from a cursory examination of the website, it’s no longer an option.) so it can moan through your computer speakers, or GYRATING HIPS that can rock with your movements, (Also no longer an option.) like riding some kind of demented S+M mechanical bull. (I like that explanation but it could’ve been better.) And yes, this silicone monstrosity can be yours for about $10,000! (Thanks to the marvels of inflation, the price is about $5,500 with no abnormal attachments. I’ll get into those later.)

I’ll give you a moment to contemplate on that, and to go look up the site: www.realdoll.com. I’m patient; while you look, I’ll go have a cigarette. (That URL still works, in fact, so if you’re bored, have a look around and get back to me whilst I vape a bit.)

…………….

Back now? Good. (Not that I’d know the difference.) Let’s move on, shall we?

Who… no, how… scratch that why… aw, hell with it. Look, people, this is disturbing shit. The fact that something like this exists is bad. The fact that people are BUYING something like this is extremely worse. Howard Stern owns one, so you KNOW this can’t be a good thing! (To be fair, Howard Stern has a shitload of money and can do whatever he wants. Though he’s rich and Alex got tons of ass so clearly you’d think Howard could do whoever he wanted as well, but still.) I mean, you’re essentially fucking a doll! Does this sound like a good idea to ANYONE out there? (The company is still in business a decade later, so apparently so, yes.) And don’t tell me that there are people out there that are too ugly to get laid; I watch Springer sometimes, I see the scumbags that ARE getting ass. If porn is good enough for the rest of us, it’s damn sure good enough for you. (Well, considering how many sex toys exist in the world, apparently not.) And if you REALLY have THAT MUCH MONEY that you can justify spending it on something like this, why in the HELL aren’t you just flaunting your cash in bars? Pretty women will fuck ugly men because they have money, and that’s a fact. (Oh me from a decade or so ago, you’re such a dick. Not that the sentence isn’t true, but if Mae Young had offered me a million bucks I’d have plowed that field like nobody’s business, Indecent Proposal can kiss my ass. Also, if you think about it, $6K for a doll you can fuck whenever you want versus, say, paying a prostitute $500 a session makes a lot more fiscal sense. Alternately, when you have money, but not a lot of money, you’d buy this. It’s kind of like the sexual equivalent of a Dodge Viper, really.)

And the worst thing of all is that these people are essentially marketing this by saying “$10,000 is a lot of money up front, but it’s cheaper than dating someone, and more sanitary than hookers.” (That’s clearly not an exact quote, but yes, that was the selling point for the dolls for a long while.) And this, apparently, is a suitable sales pitch, as enough of these things get sold that this company STAYS in business. Yes, folks, there are people that are willing to spend this kind of money up front because they’d rather not date real women, and don’t want diseases. (Now, as a counter-point, one would argue that you can combat both of these with condoms and one-night-stands, but that also assumes that the same people saying this thing are able to date women, which, one has to wonder.) Okay, diseases, I understand, because no one wants to feel like they’re pissing out a chainsaw every morning, but I find it painful to fathom so many people that hate dating, but love sex. (A decade later and I hate dating and could give a fuck less about sex, so I guess it just comes down to age.)

But waitaminute… this brings up two questions: First, is dating really that bad? (Yes.) Well, honestly, it’s not pleasant, seeing as how we’ve made it into more of a song and dance than it needs to be. I mean, you’re essentially dating someone to see if they’re compatible to you, and you can generally get a feel of that in one date. (A decade later and this more or less holds true, and yet I keep going on two or three just in case, because I’m not very bright.) If you can talk freely with one another, and enjoy it, it’s a good date, period. We’ve turned it into this agonizing marathon of death, complete with TV shows designed to chronicle people’s FIRST dates with TOTAL strangers that they have NOTHING in common with. (I think I was talking about Singles, but honestly so many of those shows have come and gone I have no idea.) And that, I think, is the problem, in a nutshell: people are dating other people that share NO common interests, because they like how their ass looks in a pair of tight leather pants. (Despite how it seems, “Draco in Leather Pants,” as a trope came into existence about four or five years after this, so this isn’t a reference to anything in particular. Though the fact that people will defend Draco and Sephiroth as viable romantic partners despite, y’know, all the evil and quasi-racism and all, says more than I ever could.) The dating ritual has become lying to the person you’re dating until they get reeled in far enough that you can show them the real you, and if they don’t run away, kickass. (On one hand, I believe I was marginally bitter about dating at the time for one reason or another, though not because I wasn’t doing okay with it or anything, so I’m not sure why. On the other hand, I’ve noticed that yeah, a lot of people kind of fib a bit when they start out, which is probably why I don’t like dating at this point. I’m at the point where I basically tell people what I want more-or-less up-front because my free time is non-existent and I want to be clear if shit’s going to work so as not to waste anyone’s time, and people always assume that’s not the case, which is… weird.)

So, yeah, dating is immensely complicated. But that’s another rant. (Which I’m pretty sure I, thankfully, never wrote.) And it’s not the issue here, sex is.

The second question is much more complicated: The people that are buying things like these are essentially weirdoes who can’t attract members of their desired sex, so is this really a BAD thing that they’re not procreating? Well… yes and no. (Though for different reasons than I’m implying.) No, it’s not bad, because if these freaks suffocate in their sleep tomorrow, life will be so much better. Harsh? Oh yes, but keep in mind that these are the people that go into porn stores with cum stains on their pants, so they’re not doing the world any favors. If they all died tomorrow, yeah, the porn industry would take a hit, but we’d all survive. (Honestly, the one thing I’ve learned more than any other is that just because someone has an odd or deviant sexual lifestyle, doesn’t mean they can’t hold down a job and function in society. There are absolutely people who walk around smelling of shame and bodily fluids all the time, but most people who own something like this probably work at normal jobs and do normal shit in their free time, before going home and fucking their plastic doll. I don’t have to understand it, just not judge it.)

But the yes part is much more complex. Essentially, what these people are saying is that they’d rather have sex than communicate, which ties into one of my deepest held beliefs: If we can somehow manage to simulate sex to the point that it’s as pleasurable as the real thing, if not more so, the human race will become as extinct as a virgin in LA. (Considering how many video game companies are in LA… fuck you, you were thinking it.)

And if you don’t believe that, consider how many episodes of Star Trek involved the holodeck. (That’s a common note in fiction: as soon as we invent fuckable robots, we’ll end society. I think Demolition Man kind of made the counter-claim to that one, sort of, but it’s honestly possible that if we invent robots that can pretend to emote before we invent AI we might be doomed from a propagation standpoint. Either that or Aldus Huxley will end up being right, which is also not a future I’m pleased about.)

So yeah, these people that are buying a simulated doll bother me slightly. I can’t see the pleasure in owning a silicone doll, save for making her the website’s mascot or something (because I’m that fucked up). (No, if I were that fucked up I’d have actually saved up for one and bought it. Shut up past me.) I certainly can’t see having sex with what is essentially a goddamn DOLL. But there are people that can, and these same people are the ones that thought phone sex, cybersex, porn websites, and even online porn shops were all GREAT ideas, because they minimized the amount of time spent dealing with people who would have liked to, you know, COMMUNICATE with said people. (To be fair, communicating is hard, man.) These are the people that are pushing the pornographic revolution ahead, and these are the people that will be the first to stand in line to test out virtual reality sex simulation, among other things. (This is, essentially, the reason Blu-Ray won the format wars.) And it’s these people that are eventually going to lead to the wiping out of the entire human race, simply because of our need to NOT communicate with people, whether it be fear of rejection, fear of acceptance, or even just a fear of people. (Considering how many meme posts I saw on Tumblr during my brief time as a member that more or less put truth to this thing, maybe this observation wasn’t entirely inaccurate.)

Or maybe they just like dressing the damn thing up in a sheep costume and fucking it in the ass because none of their girlfriends would do it for them, I don’t know. (As a counterpoint, I will note that this seems to also be a big selling point for the Real Dolls nowadays, as you can order the dolls with all kinds of custom options that seem to cater to fetishes of specific sorts. What kinds of options you ask? Well, you have the fairly typical elf ears and multi-colored skin packages, but you can also order trans kits, so you can create a silicone futanari doll if such a thing is your particular fetish. So, yes, it’s entirely possible people are ordering these to cater to specific fetishes they can’t otherwise fulfill in their every day life.)

But is sex that great? (Our media says yes. I respectfully disagree.) Is it really worth all the fuss? Is worth the mess that is the dating system, the blind dates with people you know nothing about, the numerous bad come on lines, the thousands of dollars in drinks bought, the hookers, the magazines, the movies, or, god forbid, the silicone dolls?

Maybe. (Sigh.)

Or maybe it’s the desire to find someone who you can talk to that is WILLING to fuck you that’s the important point here. Maybe the reason we all seek out sex is because we’re looking for someone who will LET US have sex with them, because we know, if they let us do that, they like us in some form or fashion. (Which is not always the case, as I’ve discovered more than a few times.) Maybe it’s the desire to be liked that pushes us to find people to have sex with, and maybe it’s that desire that forces those deviates of society to buy hookers, or become sugar daddies to strippers, or even buy a doll. (THAT is probably at least slightly true.) Because for that singular moment in time, when they’re in that position, doing whatever they’re doing at that exact moment in time, they feel like they’re liked, and they feel less like a desperate piece of shit that’s been stepped in by the shoes of life. Maybe it helps them feel happy. Maybe it helps them feel like the rest of us do when we actually have a significant other. Maybe it even makes them feel normal.

Or at the very least, it’s keeping them the hell away from me. (Oh, and you were so close.)

And that, my friends, is a good thing.

The world needs an enema. (Remember kids, it’s always good to read shit you wrote ten years ago, if only to remind yourself, “I’m not that person anymore.” Unless you still are, I guess.)

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