Yesterday evening a man named Jon sent me a dick pic. It was a dick movie, actually, presumably of a man getting himself off but I didn’t watch it because why would I. I have never been sent a dick pic. Actually, I still haven’t received one. It was meant for Kara. In an experiment of provocation and a true test of her confidence, Kara posted a picture on Instagram (shown above) of herself posing naked beneath a sweater looking like she might be in the middle of a sexual encounter worth photographing. She added #notop to the description and then she waited. Within three minutes, a man whose handle I would love to share but I don’t remember, followed Kara and she followed back impulsively because she reciprocates with most people who follow her. She hadn’t noticed the “follow back now pls” comment he had left under the photo but she knew immediately what it meant. This man did the equivalent of following Kara home. How convenient its become to have a click-ready-entrance into someone’s profile, their personal space, their room. It’s like leaving your window open at night in case someone wants to see what you and your things look like and then watching them instantly come inside and show you their penis. Jon had left a message for Kara. She clicked knowing what it would be and up popped the video.
Kara’s portrait remains on her Instagram feed. To her, it is emblematic of her sexual achievements. To me, it’s a pictorial rendering entitled I’M ONE OF YOU. Everyone has sexy pictures on their Instagram. Some women have entire feeds featuring themselves in bras. It’s normal. How many dick videos does Jon send out in a day? How many of them are deleted? We’re all such consumerist sluts now, it’s hard to be bothered by any of it. In fact, it’s kind of sweet. He really must have liked her photo (ew).
I use the word slut in appreciation of Kara’s confidence, honestly without judgement. To my insecure brain, sexiness is associated with humiliation and weakness but for Kara it’s a serious rescue from shame. Kara has crafted an online ego that imitates the Who of her that she loves. She takes time to craft images so she can appear to be doing something rather than actually doing it. To Kara, sex is just another activity, healthy and fun so here’s an image of it, right next to the image of her morning juice. If I got that dick video I would have deleted the photo and maybe even my entire account out of fear and self-hate. Kara laughed it off in a way that nearly scares me: How is this normal to her? How is this normal to anyone? Slowly, as I lay in bed, I imagined her sexual past. I have never done that while constructing a fictional character before but, considering she’s an alter ego and not just someone I write into a story, it feels important to decide on her initial sexual encounters and the circumstances surrounding them. I lay there and too many possibilities came to mind for a young, desperately trendy Kara.
It would be unfair to assume that Kara is generically promiscuous but I have an unfair bias. I have never dated anyone, never had a boyfriend, was usually bullied or ignored growing up, I didn’t kiss anyone until I was eighteen and then losing my virginity in my almost mid twenties was so humiliating that I slept with everyone I met for almost two years. No one can call that a healthy sexual confidence. When women are beaming with sexuality I make instinctive assumptions about their wealth of experience. But, I won’t know Kara’s story until I’ve put my bias aside, for now all I know is that she acts as if sex is a part of her body. Last night it invited a dick pic which red flagged the project momentarily for me but then I realized: I can’t slut shame my own alter ego by removing her from the internet. She must follow her slutty heart.
It feels good to sink into the skin of a slut. I used to have a friend who, through the process of educating me about slut shaming, shamed me into feeling disgusted by my own virginity. We were both going to the University of Toronto and both studying social sciences but, whereas I was beginning to feel as though Social Science is a body of disciplines engaged in the study of social mechanics from a variety of angles, my friend seemed to understand Social Science to be That Thing She Mentions When She’s Justifying Her Own Bullshit. She is a Kara: Self-obsessed, attractive, comically sexual. Political Science, her major, became her excuse for engaging with whiny extra-curricular literature that supplemented her superficial interests so that she could prove her intelligence. Most books she referenced were really memoirs disguised as academic studies but some of her books were iconic and therefore hard to make fun of.
Her favourite reference, which I have admittedly never read, The Ethical Slut: A Guide To Infinite Sexual Activities, co-written by Janet Hardy (Sex Educator, Writer) and Dossie Eaton (Family therapist and publicly “sexually non-committal”), used to bother me the most. I have never read the book so I have no right to talk about it or argue with it especially knowing that so many people really love it, but having my (obviously kind of shitty) friend use a published discourse to shame me into believing that without having had sex, I was less than her because she is a Slut and that’s progressive, healthy, hip, it made me so sad and anxious, I really thought I was going to die from vaginal suicide (that’s when your vagina kills herself because no one ever visits her). The book, according to my friend, empowered individuals of either gender to lead their lives with the comfortable understanding that sex is healthy, enjoyable and worth pursuing even if it is unattached to monogamous or long-term commitments. That’s a beautiful ambition! Unfortunately, my friend politicized it with so much arrogance, worshipping this book and believing that anyone who didn’t “get it” was a repressed slut shaming negation of what humanity should be. She seemed to use the book in defence of her choice to sleep with a variety of men but I didn’t care about her sexual choices. I envied them. I would have mimicked them if only I could have found a way to have sex with a man, I was sure I would have been flying around the city exploring all situations involving No Pants. My virginity wasn’t meant to slut shame her. It wasn’t meant to have anything to do with her. Just as her ethically slutty life had nothing to do with me.
Now that I have been in the skin of a slut, oh what a fun feeling it is to know how much time is spent prepping my slutty face, my slutty portrait, it’s a full few hours just to get one picture. I doubt there is a single social science text in the world that bothers justifying that kind of narcissism. My “friend” put the same kind of pressure on me that all these virtual sluts are putting on each other. Are there ethical sluts, yes. Should we end slut shaming? YES PLEASE. But let’s also put an end to the manufactured images, the dick videos, the proof, the false proof, really. All of you posing like this look the same and you look fake. Good sex would melt the makeup right off your face. The fact that yours is bold and perfect is a really idiotic give-away. Let’s just resign to being comfortable sluts. Don’t push it (unless “it” is an orgasm in which case, yeah go for it).
Kara will continue to blindly fit in with trending sexual images. Unless she learns something new. There’s nothing I can teach her because I don’t think she’s doing anything wrong. I just wonder what fuels her obsession with getting Being A Slut so A+ right, it’s exhausting. It also might be dangerous but it’s hard to know. Since it’s only the beginning of this process, until the obsession becomes something new, it’s just part of a constructed ego. And that ego seems to love her boobs.
This blog is updated daily, detailing my transformation into a fictional character who is being crafted for a larger theatrical project. If you like it, please share to social media, follow the blog and come back soon
You can read Kara’s blog at http://www.okkarablog.wordpress.com
or follow her on Instagram @karakarrara