Scope's most recent addition to their extraordinarily awkward "End the Awkward" series of publications is an alphabet of disabled sex. Forgive me, but this was too good to just leave alone. Sex and disability is a fascinating and under researched topic, so can't you just imagine the dreary afternoon spent trying to come up with an entire A-Z of disabled sexuality. I hate to think how many biscuits they all got through.
Going through the list, I will trouble you with my own guesses as to what they might have come up with followed by a little critique of each subject. So here we go.
A. Given that I was anticipating a pretty righteous and yet baffling start to the list, I guessed Autustic Sex. I was anticipating something along the lines of "Wasn't Dustin Hoffman cute in Rainman?". However, I forgot about the single most sexualised disabled group - amputees. Given the rubbish a lot of amputees go through online, it would have made for an interesting discussion. It was, if anything, rather simplified.
B. Whilst trying to guess, Deb mimed a clue. That didn't help as much as you might have thought. I didn't even manage a guess and Burlesque really is scraping the barrel. Again, you could have interesting discussions about how disabled bodies fit surprisingly well into the Burlesque aesthetic, especially as it's often tainted by the dark shadow of the Freak Show.
C. Thoroughly unimpressed by B, I guessed that C stood for Cucumber. Which makes marginally more sense than Coffee. Or Coffee? Because Coffee? is the universal euphemism for "Fancy a quick macchiato upstairs?". Which explains why Starbucks has done so well. Given that I don't drink coffee, I suggest that we create more euphemistic consumables. Cucumber is perhaps a little too obvious, although "Do you want to come upstairs for a cucumber sandwich with the crusts cut off?" is pretty much on my level.
D. Given that most Disabled Loos are considered hot spots for illicit sexual activity, I thought they might feature in this list as something to be reclaimed. But no, they've gone for the rather more chaste option of Dating. Which seems wantonly Dull.
E. For epilepsy? Electroshock therapy? Or, if we're being a bit more sensible, emotions? Nope - Experimenting! Firstly, I felt rather robbed because the person interviewed has non-EPILEPTIC seizures! So close! But it's a rather miserable little story about how sex with a disabled person can be 'weird'. And in the example, it's weird because someone might have a seizure during intercourse rather than any of the hundred other more extreme examples of 'weird' I can think of. Of course, none of those weirdnesses even compare to the weirdness of, say, having sex with someone who really enjoyed Chopper Chicks in Zombie Town. Or someone who enjoys coffee. Or someone who came up with the idea of a Disabled Sex A-Z. *shudders* Weeeeiiiiirrrrrd.
F. Heh. It's not what you think! No, it's not that either, I checked. Ooo, flagellation! I didn't think of that one! No, still wrong. F is for Flaunt it. Because, as we've learnt with Free the Nipple, the way to change any attitude is for people to post naked photos of themselves online. In all seriousness, it would be great to see more variety in the images we see around us, and particularly in those of a sexual nature where white, very young, perfectly proportioned and apparently non-disabled women dominate. However, that's not so much up to us as it is up to advertising companies who think that 'perfection' sells.
G. Gay! I got this one straight away. But this is wonderful - listen to this.
G is for Gay… or bisexual, or lesbian, or trans.
It's not, you know. Otherwise it would be gisexual, gesbian or grans. So does this mean that disabled people should start sleeping exclusively with grandmothers now?
H. So fed up, I didn't even try to guess. But whoever wrote this thing was either messing around or hasn't got into any trouble while trying to get their lumbar rearranged. Happy Endings apparently, in this case, have nothing to do with insalubrious salons but is, in fact, the *heart warming* tale of someone who had to wait a lifetime (or at least until they were in college) in order to meet their eventual spouse. Move over Brief Encounter.
We'll have to wait now for Scope to continue this fascinating series. I suggest you spend the rest of the day trying to come up with your own guesses for what they might come up with for the rest of the alphabet.