Friday, April 16, 2010

some seventies fads must stay dead

togas make me involuntarily shudder. with them they bring back a deluge of hideous memories of a decade of 70s meets 80s all mashed. my semi-naked parents [as pictured above] had & went to toga parties. lots & lots of them. they were consummate fantasy goers. i guess we have more in common than i like to admit.

inspired by the national lampoon's breakout film "animal house" which featured a not so risqué [but stll quite primevally arq-like] yet infamous fraternity toga party scene [with john belushi dead anting], pseudo-graeco roman decadence experienced some kind of renaissance when it crossed over from frat life & bombarded popular culture in the late seventies to coincide with late adopters jumping on the free-love and drug vibe. the toga became a symbol of debauchery. orgies & the sexual revolution are so much easier sans underwear, especially when you BYO bed linen.

first lady, eleanor roosevelt ironically got in on the act fairly early & hosted one of the first known toga parties ever in the white house. i can't work out whether i like that concept or not.

swingers parties do tend to be frequented by people you definitely don't want to see without their clothes. and then some swingers are still gatecrashing the presidential palace nowdays...

regardless of a modern conception of sexual orientation, greeks & romans often engaged in anal sex. the toga guaranteed the convenience of a quick fix. according to wiki the penetrated partner was known as "sperma suscipio" while the penetrator was referred to as the "eltonius".

secret documentation reveals that the roman catholic church has been suppressing the truth about the historical prevalence of anal sex for centuries. biblically endorsed sex for hetero couples was encouraged allegedly to retain the sacred bond between a priest and an altar boy separate. don't even get me started on monk porn. toga-like robes.

most women didn't even wear togas in the ancient world. only prostitutes donned such garb, which i guess works well with the pornification of the original intentions stemming out from initiation rites/celebrations in american colleges at the time.

for suburban explorers in the late 20th century, such clothing was probably an excellent excuse to exercise sexual curiosity in a still cloak & dagger environment where all types of experimentation including [but not limited to] homo-eroticism, were still something largely living in the mainstream closet. with the toga came a liberation of sorts.

these people were baby boomers raised under the shadow of cold war conservatism by parents born of the depression, so they ate everything on their plate and tried not to be too different. the free love generation had a slow trickle-down effect compounded by distance from the source but accelerated post vietnam outside of the states. there was no internet for fast free exchange of ideas or imagery. sheets & what they represented were wild!

theoretically it's all out now & we have the freedom to be who we are without having to make excuses or hide. theoretically.

mechanisms such as the toga could comfortably remain in the realms of extinction or dormancy like glenn close in the fatal attraction bath. still who am i to belittle with my victorianisms the love for dress-ups & extroversion?

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