Nibbles: The Circumcision Wars, Vogue Italy Plus-Sized Nudes, Transgender Vocabulary, Roman Sex Act Flowchart

Plus sized models, Vogue Italy June 2011

  • Celebrating body diversity, Vogue Italia’s June 2011 cover shoot features plus size models in a lush setting for a story of undeniable sensuality and elegance. Captured by Steven Meisel, models Candice Huffine, Tara Lynn and Robyn Lawley strip down to boudoir ensembles from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana and Agent Provocateur. Vogue Italia’s June 2011 Full Gallery (, above)
  • A San Diego-based group known as MGM Bill is pushing for state and federal laws banning male circumcision. The acronym stands for Male Genital Mutilation, and the group argues that men deserve the same protection afforded to women by the federal Female Genital Mutilation Act. The Circumcision Wars (
  • “Today, we address the language and meaning of words regarding transgender issues – many of them are actually very new words. We also uncover why English makes it particularly tricky to use transgender vocabulary at first glance. As a user, you know the power of a well-used word, so read on and fortify your vocabulary.” What does “transgender” mean exactly, and how does the English language handle gender? (Hot & Trending Words Daily Blog at, thanks Daniel!)
  • “I made a flowchart indicating acceptable sex acts for male Roman citizens (as distinct from women, slaves, freed men, or provincials, all of which had different rules). Then I made an oversimplified chart because I am silly” Roman Sex Act Flowchart (, via
  • California’s adult movie business is under pressure – internet piracy and the economic downturn have slashed revenues, while state regulators seem set to win their long battle to make actors wear condoms. (Features Star Trek XXX and Bobbi Starr.) Californian porn industry’s ‘perfect storm’ of troubles (BBC News)
  • Ellen Barkin, John Benjamin Hickey and director George C. Wolfe were on Charlie Rose to talk about the Broadway revival of Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart” about the early days of AIDS. “The Normal Heart” on Charlie Rose (Viviane’s Sex Carnival)
  • OMGLOL Not written by The Onion! > “Some marriage therapists caution that women can become as dangerously unbalanced by [romance novels] entrancing but distorted messages as men can be by the distorted messages of pornography.” Romance novels can be as addictive as pornography (
  • In what is being hailed as a world first, the Central Bureau of Statistics of Nepal has given official recognition to its third gender or Meti citizens. Nepal census records third gender (gay persons of color)
  • Great new sex-positive Hepatitis C sex and pleasure site: “The goal of this website is to promote Hepatitis C awareness within the kink community so we can all continue our sexy adventures in the safest way possible.” SaferSexC (

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  1. @Aranjedeath – I don’t think they’re plus-sized in any way. It’s what the fashion/women’s mag industry thinks is plus sized. Foolery. It will take them 50 years to catch up to regular sized women, and then another 50 to get that this is what many men consider sexy.

    The circumcision issue is so upsetting. When it’s needed, it’s a godsend – and different cultures should have their rights respected. I do know a lot of men who wish they’d had a choice. I also find that I’m an unusual American woman who generally prefers her men uncut – but that’s just because it’s “more to play with” and I have no idea about sensation, as it’s so subjective from one man to another.

    There’s also a hell of a lot of incorrect information about cleanliness and infection. We need an unbiased medically sound report on cut vs. uncut. Few Americans know that uncut men have more protection against infections because the foreskin keeps antibacterial glands intact – much like the vulval/vaginal ecosystem.

    I can’t imagine the shaming uncut American men must go through – though I have heard painful stories. We desperately need more education about this all around, and to get Americans to stop thinking they’re the only country with penises in the world. Most of the rest of the world is uncut.

    But good luck getting anyone to have a rational conversation about this as America experiences its first public dick pic (Weinergate). Know what I mean?

  2. My grandfather had a similar experience to anon – adult, medically necessary circumcision. He told my father it was the most horrible thing in his life and the time leading up to it was miserable. He made me promise to have my boys circumcised (the conversation made him cry). I didn’t have boys so I didn’t have to make the decision. The experiences of my grandfather and anon make me feel this needs to be left to the family even though I understand the point made by the other side.

  3. Are those ladies really considered to be plus-size models? I would call them, at best, normal-size models. Maybe even a bit smaller than the average, depending on the country.

    I’m still on the fence about the circumcision bill. It seems like a dumb government encroachment, but it also seems to be preventing a pretty dumb (read: useless) operation. I just can’t figure out which is more offensive so I can pick a side. I’d love to see a convincing argument either way, but right now I’m stuck between `govt trying to rule people’s personal lives (with possible popular approval)` and `finally stopping an optional religious practice some people take issue with`. I just don’t know which one I should pick.

  4. Regarding the romance novels- this infuriates me! I personally don’t read romance novels (i happen to be a woman who prefers porn…) but i just don’t understand how people can be fast to blame the WRONG side of the equation. People are flawed, and whatever they choose to cling to doesn’t matter- the same could be said about teenagers who are obsessed with anime/japanese culture- but we don’t go around saying japan is unhealthy! People have a natural tendency to obsess over things, and when it starts to become an unhealthy obsession, well that’s a sign that they are unsatisfied with some aspect of their lives, not because the thing they are obsessing over has given them a false standard for reality and thus they become unsatisfied with the real reality.

    I’m not a psychology expert at all, but this is what seems logical to me… so yeah, my 2 cents.

  5. Huh, presented without comment. That’s an improvement; usually any reporting on opposition to cutting off parts of babies’ penises is accompanied by a largish helping of sneering at people who acknowledge that a radically different degree of harm is involved vs. female genital mutilation, but in principle mutilating helpless, non-consenting children is unethical and unacceptable even if they happen to be male.

  6. Wouldn’t it be a good thing if porn stars wore condoms? And for those who dislike the law I’m sure plenty of amateur porn and porn made outside of California would still be available.

  7. As someone who has undergone a medically necessary circumcision in his adult life, I feel comfortable saying that I wish it had happened at an age where I was too young to remember it rather than at an age where I can. With that out of the way, I can tell you exactly how much sexual satisfaction I’ve lost from the procedure:


    It really isn’t like FGM at all. It’s not like your entire penis is removed, or even “just” the head. Sex is still great and orgasms are still just as awesome.

    Though I don’t think this was always the case, I strongly suspect that anti-semitic (both anti-Jew and anti-Muslim) sentiment is the main driving force behind the recent upswing in the “war on circumcision.” My own personal experience does not bear out the mutilation claims, which most people can only speculate on.

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