Oyaji Uke

Tiger and Bunny_birthday animal

Detail from the Japanese BL fan comic Birthday Animal by Akou Susugu (Scanlated into English by Vices and Devices) In this story Tiger has a dildo-like tail (a birthday present from Bunny) which gives him sexual energy but also seems to have a life of its own.

I produced a zine for the Parasite Exhibition Ten Million Rooms of Yearning: Sex in Hong Kong which takes place in five venues in Hong Kong and will be open until August 10, 2014. My zine comments on a collection of Boy’s Love fan zines and slash fiction about tow anime characters,  Tiger & Bunny, and focuses on a reappraisal of the middle-aged male character as “bottom” (In Japanese Oyaji Uke)

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When our ancestors invented writing, ghosts wept in the night

 

I am now researching stories in which scholars go on a journey of enlightenment, but get interrupted and pestered by a ghost who wants to have sex. Judith Zeitlin has written superbly about this phenomenon  in The Phantom Heroine: Ghosts and Gender in 17th Century Chinese Literature (University of Hawaii Press 2007). In her analysis, ghost romance exemplifies the tendency of Chinese literati to displace fear back onto a “specter”– an abstract figure whose loneliness and charm evokes complex feelings of lust, pity and tenderness. The ghost-figure also represents an  “upside down”realm to intellectualism as it evokes powerful feelings of eroticism and melancholia involved in processes of thought and writing.  This is why Zeitlin refers to a poem that captures the underside of intellectual types of work and efforts:

When our ancestors invented writing, ghosts wept in the night

When later people learned to read, their worries all arose

I am not scared of ghosts, and I’ m also worry-free

But at night as I amend the ancient text, my autumn lamp glows green.

(Gong Zizhen, Miscellaneous poem, 1838)

In many of the most glorious stories of ghostly seduction, the realm of Qing (high-strung, passionate and sentimental love) is idealized as a temporary or liminal state of being that then disappears and life goes back to normal.

 

ghost5

Sex scene between two ghost-sisters in Erotic Ghost Story III (1992). The two sister first masturbate when peeping at the third sister having sex with a scholar, then they get together and make love.

While looking at Hong Kong movie classics, I came across a wide range of category III (x-rated) movies with sex scenes between scholars and ghosts. First of all I would like to mention Erotic Ghost Story III (1992), the third installment of a popular movie series directed by Ivan Lai. This movie is set in the Tang Dynasty and features Chu Chung who is about to get married but goes astray when falling into the “other realm” where three ghost-sisters are competing to have contact with him.

The first sex scene is a remarkable and drawn out love scene between Chung Chu and one of the sisters, Yun Meng. As the sex goes by, we find out that the  the two other sisters are actually peeping at the couple through a key hole.  In a remarkable change of perspective, the movies then pursues the sexual fantasies of the two sisters. First the camera zooms in on their beautiful bodies as they are masturbating and fantasizing in separate beds, then it shows how they get together and start making love to each other.  One sister pleasures the other orally and then pours water on her body to clean her.

It is almost as if there is a moment of solidarity between the main narrative—the superb sex between scholar Chung Chu and his ghost–and the side-narrative of sexual chemistry between two other sisters. The side-narrative is not pursued any further in this movie, but it does represents one of the best moments of “accidental lesbianism” in Hong Kong cinema.

becoming-bourgeois (the hong kong way)

I am still stuck in the Festival City, the brandnew ultra-highrise complex in the New Territories, looking onto the Shatin canal on the east side, and onto a magic mountain on the west. The mountain was nostalgically reconstructed by means of a digital effect on my Sony Lumix DMC-ZS3 called ‘pinhole.’  With this device I seek my own moments of Orientalism, not in the sense of exoticizing and flirting with the Chinese (I have tried but got rejected) but by picturing a mythic landscape to salvage this condition that I live in. It is a highly sanitized and top security living arrangement for the Hong Kong bourgeoisie, a place where you are sealed off from the Tai Wai working class and where as humans you can stop saying hello to each other. Here it is only children and the small pets who still display social behaviors. The dwellers of the Festival City seems to be remote and grumpy despite the fact that their choice of apartment reveals that they have landed nicely.

 

So what is wrong then with life in the Festival City? There are no restaurants, no small stores, no vendors of goods, no racks for bicycles, no benches, no lawns, no bars in this place. There are cheaply engineered flower arrangements but no smell of the earth. At sunset we should be able to descend from our top-level apartment and have a little chat with our  neighbors. Just sit down and have a drink, listen to radio music, or sit on a bench amongst smells of the outdoors, gaze at the unknown and fuzzy-chat, practice our Cantonese, our Korean, our French.  Instead, they all stay at home and hire tutors for their multi-gifted children.

This place could be the setting of a mechanime movie about a dark post-human futrure that ends in social protest, the children walking together and occupying the strange sterile walkway that runs through their complex. They once posted security personel on this walkway to direct human traffic in two divided lanes, but the dwellers said “Shit, this really sucks.” The traffic cops were then removed and reassigned duties, but the atmosphere stayed the same. There is still no social vibe, no joi de vivre in the Festival City. It really is a convenient and luxuruous place to live in, but in the end, as Lou Reed sang for the small town children, you know that you gotta get out.

 

Deep Kwoktalk

Last friday I made an appearance on Crystal Kwok’s RTHK talk show Kwoktalk.  It was an amazing and quite relaxing experience as Kwok is very sharp, accomodating and open-minded and we really went into the topic of cultural tastes in porn, online seduction by means of DIY porn as well as male/female body image and queer porn. My session was preceded by Belinda Flanders of the dating website Lovestruck, which is currently making waves in Hong Kong. I will talk more about the unbearable lightness of sex sites (and the annoying “seriousness” of dating sites) in my talk for the Anthropology Society at in the Museum of History on thursday 18 october.

Belinda Flanders, presenter Crystal Kwok and Katrien Jacobs

A New Phase in Life

I still live in Tai Wai but have moved to a building called Festival City, Phase II. This brandnew maximum-security residential complex is nick-named “the shield”  because it is shaped like a tall weapon that cuts right through the urban environment.  It was built in three “phases” and the last one is still under construction. Each phase consists of 5 huge apartment blocks, each stacked with 50 floors of bright and clean apartments , with 4 apartments on each floor.

It could now become a question on the analytical skills section of the Hong Kong college entrance exam–given that each apartment holds an average of 3 dwellers, how many apartment dwellers can we find in the Festival City? And then: How are those dwellers going to interact with each other, if at all, those who paid an arm and a leg to rent or purchase one the highly overprized little cubicles ? (The essay question)

We moved here three weeks ago and will report on private whereabouts and the social affect of futuristic high-rise culture. I start with a glorious view from the living room. I have previously shared dark thoughts about living in Hong Kong’s dense highrise buildings and imaging the sex lives of others–how it is perhaps even futile or impossible to cross the boundary to grasp other people, other bodies, other races.

I am reminded of a talk by Trinh T. Minh Ha  from her book “Elsewhere, Within Here: Immigration, Refugeeism and the Boundary Event,” where she describes “the boundary event” as a process of self-torture where you try to cross over to another culture and confront an obstacle like a big wall. This wall may become a mental fixation and determines life expectations and moods. Then sometimes it is simply the case that you have not realized that you are already living on the other side. This is how I feel about myself and the Festival City. I definitely cannot imagine that I live here, but somehow it is true.

 

 

Filippino lesbian wedding in Kennedytown

Today is my 45th birthday and I had a very sweet day. I received gifts and kisses, a message from my ghost. I also actually attended a lesbian wedding organized by the Filippino lesbian organization Filguys. The young couple Jeczer and Shey were accompanied by their butch-femme “parents” and “grandparents,” and many other lesbian couples, and—-0h my goddess—-what an amazing showcase of queer pride and performance artistry. I have never seen so many beautfiful butches in my entire life, not to mention their sexy looking femme-girls, and it was indeed a very emotional moment for all those involved. Hong Kong can feel like a crusty cold patriarchy but then here we entered a space of love and subversion. Of course this is not a legal wedding but a hijacking of that sacred space of male-female entitlement, and it maintained very traditional Filippino wedding elements, like the wedding rings, and the coins, and the couple being tied together by means of a cord.  The young butch Jeczer was dressed as a golden prince and gave a long and tearful speech, which was much better anything in the British royal wedding. It was also just so nice to be welcomed so warmly, to be invited to give a speech, it was one of the best queer events that I have ever had. And let’s also hope the butch-femme couple is having good sex right now. And thank you my student Ada Lee for inviting me along.

au revoir tai hang!

I am finally moving out of this old city hood into the central new territories, a special kind of mountainous suburbia close to my new university, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. I highly recommend life in Tai Hang but the human electricity that runs through ieventually catches up with you–the frantic mobs, the noises all around, the mammoth constructions left, above, underneath you and to the right. Tai Hang faces the destruction of old Hong Kong and hyper inflation of all real estate. It takes place right before your celestial eyes. If one could just be like the Roman emperor Nero who even observed his city go up in flames and kept singing along  “burn baby burn….burn burn baby burn.”

How A Sex Scene is Implied in A Chinese Poem

 

(Thanks to Carrie Yang for this finding cute sex poetry, for translating it into English, and for annotating it below. Happy christmas everyone and don’t forget to be bad. )

月出煙盡琴簫冷

The moon rose, the smoke dissipated, the flute became cold

階前侯人唯杯影

I waited before the steps for the one with a glass and its shadows

且執木樨眠

Slept with the Osmanthus fragrance in hand

千紅棲碧淵

Thousands of redness rested on green abyss

欲提羅襪去

I was going to leave with my silk socks

聞語還凝佇

But I hesitated upon his voice so I stopped

夢里喚真真

It reminded me how we called out in dreams

掩門辭舊塵

I shut the door and bid farewell to the old dust…

Explanations:

The Poem is written in Pu Sa Man (菩薩蠻)

首句,月出而清,清則不亂,煙盡而寒,無情始

The first sentence, when the moon rise, the whole world cleared up, there was no longer noices and chaos; when the smoke dissipate, it becomes cold…It signified ruthlessness and cruelty.

The flute is widely used to refer to the dick. And the action of “playing(blowing) the flute” is the synonym of “blow job.”

A glass before the steps…You can imagine wither it’s drug or wine.

Redness refers to blood of the woman. The green abyss is from Tao Te Ching…It refers to the virginal.

For the Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced.

(many thanks to Carrie for compiling and translating all these beautiful and poetic expressions)

胸部/乳房BREAST

波 ball (vulgar)

双峰(twin mountain)

咪咪 (mi mi)

奶子 (milk)

豪乳 (grand milk)

巨乳 (huge milk)

玉兔 (jade rabbit)

雪峰 (snowy mountain)

酥胸 (soft breast)

肉丘 (flesh hill)

肉峰 (flesh mountain)

NIPPLE 乳头

红豆 (red bean)

红头 (red head) Read more