It came to pass that my brain became annoyed with my uterus and sex organs, then downright mad, and after a couple years, nobody was speaking to each other.
I went on my way, barely noticing the rift. I focused on other things: My kid. Work. Popsicles for breakfast. A divorce.
My friend Linda performed a reiki session on me, which is a kind of energetic diagnosis and tune up. Independently, we came to the conclusion that my brain hates my uterus. After three miscarriages, I became less interested in making a baby and more in adoption. My body had let me down. But after two years of waiting, I became mom to my magical, funny, beautiful Grace Magnolia.
Basically, the rest of my body had trumped my uterus. It went down like this:
Brain: Hey uterus and sex organs, go f-yourself. Look at this amazing baby I got, and I didn’t even need your help.
Uterus and sex organs: Hey girl, we tried. We could keep going, but we’re a little worn out. You’re a little more “hot flash” than “flash flood” at this point, if you know what we mean. What about the good times? Don’t you remember your wedding night orgasm? Or those fun-filled nights in the log cabin? Mexico?
Brain: Nice try. That was then. You really let me down when I needed you most. From now on, you don’t get to make any decisions. I don’t follow you anywhere and you have zero input on my plans. I’m going to watch Mindy Kaling now, so I’m sure you’ll find something better to do.
Uterus and sex organs: [Radio silence]
It became clear that I needed to get my body aligned and talking again, and that my brain had some amends to make to my uterus. I needed my lower-chakra mojo back.
So I started buying myself flowers and putting on scented lotion. I dressed prettier, if only for myself. I went blonde. And I’m skipping a bunch of stuff that led me to last night’s Bawdy Storytelling event, whose impresario is a friendly, buxom redhead called Dixie de la Tour. Who, prophetically, reminded me when we were introduced that astrologically, yesterday was supposed to be the very worst day of the year. I had imagined an audience full of leather and vinyl-clad goths grinding on each other (which I understand is a very common, rookie mistake). But really, it was a nice room full of cultural types, academics, performers, writers, entrepreneurs and students — regular folk who wouldn’t be out of place in a Santa Monica brunch crowd. It felt like I’d stumbled into an industry party where everyone was talking about niche particulars, except in this case, the particulars were innovative sex toys and various body orifices interacting with other body parts. One Diane Keatonesque sex educator talked enthusiastically about her “demonstration” technique, and then deeply kissed two women. There was a table filled with an incredibly real silicone love doll, some man parts, and a couple disembodied feet. I laughed at the feet, thinking they were a funny foot-fetish prop.
What I loved most, besides the anthropology of being in a new scene, were the stories. I’m a little in love now with a girl named Charlie Knox, who told a funny, sad and deeply personal story of not getting enough from her husband, even after one last desperate effort at total consumption. I cringed at a man’s tale of a fantasy gone horribly wrong, which involved the Northridge earthquake and his date’s parents, who were off-duty sheriffs, coming home early. And I will never, ever receive a package from DHL again without a full haz-mat suit and a gallon of bleach.
I was fine, truly fine, and having a wonderful time.
They brought out one of the silicon feet on stage, which was wearing a strappy party sandal. The kind you’d wear to an afternoon summer wedding, perhaps. But sometimes a foot is not just a foot.
A kindly grey-haired man sitting at the table with us, who could be anybody’s math teacher in his oxford and sweater vest, turned to me with a knowing nod and whispered, “vagankle.” Imagine a foot cut off about 6 inches above the ankle, with a hole where the bone would be. The hole could, if one were so inclined, accept a long object.
My brain froze. I gaped at my friend, I’m sure looking much like a wide-mouth bass. I kept repeating, “Vagankle? VAGANKLE???!!!” I had no words. Except one. Vagankle.
I wanted to run out and see a car crash, Hindnberg explosion, celebrity surgeries gone horribly wrong — anything that would supersede the image of that foot and what some person would do to it. I’m what you’d consider a sexually liberated person. However, I can’t un-think about what I saw. I am trying my hardest to not be judgey or prudish, even though I truly believe everyone should pursue their own freaky brand of happiness.
Hoping my therapist takes emergency phone appointments. And that the people buying vagankles are getting all the love they need. My brain and my uterus are in complete agreement about this.
If you’re dying of curiosity, you can keep up with appearances on BS’s Facebook page. Maybe see you there.