Wynne, Michael. “My Life in Masturbation”, Kiss and Tell Press, 2011.
“Wynning” at Masturbation
As a reviewer, I have never been at a loss for words or for a way to start a review. Actually that sentence should be in the past tense because today I met my Waterloo. I opened the envelope today to find inside a pamphlet like book with pictures of nude men on the cover. Hmm, I thought, so much for an afternoon of academic pleasures when I have an entire book filled with erotic photos and test alongside. After reading the text and just “glancing” at the photos, I sat down to write and it happened…or, it didn’t happen—how do I do this?
Michael Wynne shares with us his relationship to masturbation with nothing held back. This is definitely not a book for everyone (but I had a great time reading it). Wynne got his inspiration from a pack of playing cards with nude men on them in various states of arousal or erections if you prefer. (A note: the hairstyle are definitely what we see this days—the hair on the head, of course but now that I think of it elsewhere, as well. The pictures are certainly B.M. [Before Manscaping]).
This is a personal look at playing with the monkey and it comes with 20 full color images alongside the text and these images are details from that pack of naked playing cards.
Wynne dedicates the book to his cousins and that is probably because he remembers “silent fumblings with a cousin under the duvet”. He went on to more sophisticated masturbatory techniques like “grinding against a mattress, and doing it in front of a mirror at a time of grief”. He asks how we learned to jerk off and who was our first jerk-off partner (Can you remember and don’t say you don’t because it as significant an occasion as a first kiss or first BJ. Who taught us pleasurable self-abuse— a brother, a cousin, a friend from school?
Wynne not only explores the ways of masturbating, he shows us how our relationship to jerking-off changes with time. We hear from his friends, about fantasies and obsessions. (“Being seduced by a Moscow taxi driver, or the fantasy of playing dead while being fucked, or the obsession with a particular part of the body (the pubic bush, for example”). I must say that he covers a lot here (as you are uncovering yourselves) He is even kind enough to number the paragraphs in case we want to go back for some pleasure. I bet there is more information about masturbation here than anyone thought possible. “Ranging in scope from Onan in the Bible to sex with ugly men to phone sex with strangers, “My Life in Masturbation” is part meditation, part confession, and part smut”. But it is more than that (I am not saying this is literary smut because it is not—it is SMUT); it is also “a comment on how our fantasies and masturbation habits evolve with technology and the ways we live our lives. I can say this, Mike Wynne is my kind of guy and I love that he says what he thinks. My only question is where do I hide the book. I live in a building with 300 Jewish mothers who like to drop in unannounced.
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