Mar 282017
 

There is a thoughtful piece on Rocket City Mom about how to talk to your kids about pornography. Obviously, that’s a different discussion now than it was thirtysomething years ago when I first hit puberty.

My “pornographic” education was rather tamer. At 12 I saw the video for Don Felder’s “Bad Girls,” and just…whew. Wow. This is freakin’ great. I mean, how could it get any dirtier than this?

Sigh. Can we have the off-the-shoulder top back in style, please?

It wouldn’t be too much longer before my friend David and I would discover a few magazines in my dad’s closet—magazines whose title rhymes with Bent Mouse—which then contributed their own bits to our respective mosaics. You know, the photographs of naked women were nice, but in hindsight, they really weren’t the main takeaways. It was mostly the ridiculous letters that made their marks. We read about all kinds of goofy shit that I thought was going to be a lot more common that it turned out to be.

(Or maybe it is, and I’m still living a really sheltered life, but I kind of doubt it.)

Then there were the teen skin comedies of the ’80s, which, once captured onto VHS, were treasured possessions indeed. Your Revenge of the Nerds. Your Hardbodies. Your Goin’ All The Way!—a strange little low-budget example that HBO must have run a bit. I bought an old VHS rental of that one on eBay ten or so years ago, then digitized it so I could enjoy it on my computer screen at my leisure. As I type, it’s probably the raciest thing on my hard drive.

The first actual X-rated film I saw was Devil In Miss Jones—practically an ABC Afterschool Special compared to what kids can effortlessly punch up today.

Coda

In this post I’ve lightheartedly enjoyed remembering my first exposures to dirty pictures. Part of that is simple nostalgia, but a more sociologically important component of it is that I really did have one of the last “innocent” childhoods in this regard.

Pornography is a far graver problem now than it was in the early ’80s, when I was first coming of age. It’s a lot harder to have a “silly” exposure to it now. The exploitation is exponentially worse; the depictions and consequently warped realities of its young consumers far more serious.

If you can relate to what I’ve written above and smile, please do. But then please do go read the linked piece on Rocket City Mom.

And watch BoWilliams.com for further posts on 21st-century pornography and what we need to do about it.

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 Posted by at 10:01 pm

  3 Responses to “Generation X: the last “innocent” porn consumers”

  1. Yup, those letters were ridiculous, haha. If it makes you feel any better I have not experienced anything like what we read. What we saw was alarmingly tame compared to what our kids (or anybody for that matter) can pull up quite effortlessly nowadays.

  2. I long for the days when the only porn a parent had to worry about was PB and PH.

  3. I was having this same conversation the other day. When I was a teenage boy, with all of the raging hormones that go with it, I could not even imagine the warped and distorted view of sex that the internet can cultivate. As a father of daughters, my thoughts and issues may be different, but it affects society as a whole.

    On a funny note, I can remember the scene in Animal House when Belushi is looking in the sorority window and rewinding that video tape and replaying it so much it made a mark in the playback that my parents noticed…

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