Carlin Ross's blog

Dear Catcallers

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 07:59
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Noa Jansma was sick and tired of being harassed and catcalled on her way to class so she decided to do what any self-respected millenial would do: start an instagram account.

@dearcatcallers is a series of selfies featuring Noa with her catcallers.  They all kind of have the same look on their faces.  It's a mix of "I'm being naughty" and "I'm a loser" with a dash of delinquency.  And most of them are old men oggling a 20 year old girl that could be there daughter but I guess that's the allure. 

When young men start posting selfies with their cougar harassers, we'll know that women too have the freedom to be aggressors.

An Interactive Map of Sheela Na Gigs

Fri, 09/29/2017 - 09:54
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Researchers have put together an interactive map of Sheela Na Gigs in Western Europe.  These graven images of older women pulling open their vulvas adorned churches and places of worship in Medieval times and harken back to ancient Egypt. 

It's not surprising that most of these reliefs were taken down and put in church basements like the image I've attached here (it's why so many of them have survived).  The prevailing thought was that Sheela Na Gigs were created as warnings against human lust.  I guess if you were a gay priest full frontal would seem like an admonition against sex. 

The Joy Radiates From This Image

Wed, 09/06/2017 - 08:08
Submitted by Carlin Ross

We are surrounded by so much pain.  From natural disasters (hurricanes and wild fires) to suffering caused by the hand of man (the fires in Oregon and the repeal of DACA). 

When I'm feeling down, I click on my desk top file folder "retreat pics" and gaze at this image.  I remember the love, joy, beauty and pleasure that can be achieved when we love ourselves. 

Thought I'd share it with you.

Here Comes the Pleasure Revolution

Fri, 08/25/2017 - 07:21
Submitted by Carlin Ross
Betty Dodson 1975

There are several media pieces coming out about the Bodysex Summit and Betty's life work. We didn't plan it but somehow interest in Bodysex, the certification program, Betty's 88th birthday and her upcoming episode on Broad City = some pretty amazing press.

This article ran yesterday on iNews and it's pretty amazing. Here are my favorite quotes (and they chose all the best pics):

“Betty started the dialogue by insisting that the clitoris is a woman’s primary sex organ,” says Ross. “Words like ‘masturbation’ and ‘clitoris’ trend with the release of her feminist classic Liberating Masturbation.”

Stretchmarks & Menstrual Rainbows

Mon, 08/21/2017 - 14:58
Submitted by Carlin Ross

I stumbled upon the instagram page of 21-year-old artist Cinta Tort Carto and fell in love.

She traces the stretchmarks on women's bodies with rainbow paint.  She glitters and rainbows menstrual markings on panties, diva cups and tampons.  It's so refreshing to view art that celebrates the power of our bodies while calling attention to misogynistic denigration and objectification:

Taylor Swift in Court = Perfection

Fri, 08/11/2017 - 07:45
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Taylor Swift's sexual assault trial is underway and her testimony is beyond brilliant.

In 2013, David Mueller grabber Taylor's ass in the photo attached here. She was 23 and he was 51. Taylor and her parents decided not to go public because they didn't want the assault to define her career (and I agree with them. America loves women in jep). Instead, they gave notice to Mr. Mueller's employer and he was promptly fired.

Then, like any ass-grabbing loser would, he filed a $3M lawsuit against Taylor for getting him fired. Masterfully, she countersued for $1 (I love this woman). Now they're in court.

It was an Experience Beyond Words

Sun, 08/06/2017 - 19:47
Submitted by Carlin Ross

I was a complete mess heading into the Bodysex retreat. Chasing an active toddler while taking calls and organizing details was a huge challenge. I barely make it through the day as it is so the extra work hurt.

Bodysex is More Relevant with Each Passing Day

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 08:19
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Aside from watching our President manhandle the first lady of France while telling her "she's in good shape", we experienced two major events this week:

A one-trillion ton ice berg broke off of the Antarctic peninsula much sooner than any climate change scientist predicted AND

The permafrost at the North Pole melted flooding Norway's Doomsday seed archive. This is significant because the permafrost holds 2x the amount of carbon currently in our atmostphere. We've had three mass extinctions - one caused by an asteroid and two by the melting of the permafrost.

My Favorite Crotch Shot from National Bikini Day

Thu, 07/06/2017 - 16:31
Submitted by Carlin Ross

God damn it, I love this woman.  In honor of #nationalbikiniday, Amy Schumer published this crotch shot to her Instagram page. 

What's more feminist than body pride and full frontal vulva in this grab-her-by-the-pussy era we're living in?   And let's not forget Amy's Glamour awards speech where she proclaimed that she's "160 pounds and catches mad dick":

Pleasure is the Real Power

Wed, 06/28/2017 - 15:23
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Knowing that this past weekend's workshop would be our last shifted something in a very important way - both for us and the women in the circle. If I had to choose one word to describe the weekend, it would be reverance.

I felt a heaviness heading into the weekend, the anticipation of emotion and possible regret. And we'd decided to let the doc crew film our morning together as we set up the room and had breakfast so I had to be camera-ready and "on". Whenever we shoot, I'm always conscious that someone decades from now - maybe even a century - will stumble upon the clip. I want Betty's work to be properly represented. I want to get it all right. I want my words to have meaning.

Amber Rose's Bush Shot is Feminism

Fri, 06/16/2017 - 08:29
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Amber Rose posted this full bush shot to her instagram account in support of her branded Slut Walk.  Of course, instagram removed it and I really had to dig to find an unpixelated copy.

I'm not sure why breasts aren't obscene but bush is - you can't even see anything.  "White" feminists called her out for displaying nudity and undermining the cause.  For the record, I'm white and a feminist and I fucing love Amber's bush shot.

Megan Jayne Crabbe Found Beauty in the Softness

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 07:47
Submitted by Carlin Ross

I stumbled across Megan Jayne Crabbe's instagram page Body Positive Power and I fell in love.

Above are two pictures of Megan - a before and after her battle with anorexia.  Her message: you can love the body you have now and fuck our diet culture.  She posts pictures and amazing dancing-in-her-panties videos with her giggling rolls of softness:

After doing about 40 Bodysex workshops, I can say that I appreciate all body types.  There's beauty in every dimple, scar, and softness is very appealing (just as much as taut muscle).

Betty's Group Sex Interview in NY Times 1971

Sun, 06/11/2017 - 14:08
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Thank you, John, for sending me the link to Group Sex: Is it 'Life Art' or A Sign Something is Wrong.  This article ran in 1971 at the onset of the Sexual Revolution.  Betty is interviewed and quoted.  Here are some of my favorite Bettyisms:

When I got divorced in 1965, I decided to find out everything I could about sexuality,” she said. “I set about letting go of jealousy and possessive feelings, and understanding I could love more than one person. It was the most important thing I ever did.”

Beauty, Strength, Vulnerability & $100M+ at the Box Office

Mon, 06/05/2017 - 07:25
Submitted by Carlin Ross

Wonder Woman has raked in over $100M in its opening weekend - the highest for any superhero film ever.

Gal Gadot is Wonder Woman incarnate and bad ass in real life.  She's Israeli and worked as a combat trainer.  And she was 5 months pregnant with her second child when she did her reshoots.  The director, Patty Jenkins, knew that she wanted to display strength and vulnerability in her character:

"I’m tired of sincerity being something we have to be afraid of doing. It’s been like that for 20 years, that the entertainment and art world has shied away from sincerity, real sincerity, because they feel they have to wink at the audience because that’s what the kids like. We have to do the real stories now. The world is in crisis.

Bodysex Builds Compassion

Thu, 05/25/2017 - 14:54
Submitted by Carlin Ross

When we book the workshops, I try to book 8 women in each group but there's always one workshop that's underbooked, one that's overbooked, and one that's perfect. This past weekend's group was our overbooked workshop.

We had women from all over the United States - one native New Yorker - and future bodysex leaders from Israel and Canada. More importantly, we had our first mother daughter attendees. I didn't clear it with Betty when I booked them but somehow I knew that it was going to work.