The Lisa Files

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The Lisa Files by Lisa Carver

Index |

November 19, 2001

On the last day of the season at Canopy Lake Amusement Park, I saw the most marvelous show. Four ladies and four men danced and sang hits, forming an intoxicating octagon of gold, whizzing limbs. They didn’t seem to notice the chill in the air, or an entire summer’s worth of tobacco particles lining every crack in the ground, or that their audience kept drifting away to eat or ride or throw darts at balloons. Or that one performer’s speech impediment came through on every song. How did the troupe maintain their tremendous glamour despite the odds? The head-to-toe lamé might have played a part. But mostly it was the the sex magic of synchronicity. Let yourself be choreographed and feel the heat.


I grew up on cheerleading and acrobatics — activities where your lycra-ensconsed body echoes all those around yours. When you find perfect sync with those around you, and with those who performed these same motions in this same order before you were born, you become something larger yet lighter than a human being: movement. One person dancing is expressive. Many persons doing the same dance is intuitive, ancestral. It feels inevitable. Just as BDSM gives you a role to play complete with key words and predictable exchanges so you don’t have to think but just feel, so does synchronised anything set you free within its tight little cage.


In fact, the best thing about mob mentality is that loss of personal responsibility and choice can loosen up longings that each of us, alone, would be too embarrassed to ever make happen. When one girl on the team shaved her legs for the first time, we all went home and copied her, then at practice the next day were twelve twelve-year-olds caressing each other’s calves and exclaiming: “Oh! Oooooh.” Next thing I knew, I was a teenager, an anarchist and a long-distance runner. There was nothing sexually charged about my new solitary ways. When I split off from the team, I split off from feeling their legs.


Years passed, and I had many adventures, but still there was a hole in my heart. I needed regimentation. Finally I let it back into my life for an hour at midday on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, in the form of aerobics at Planet Fitness. Memorizing Grapevine Right, Threepeat Hamstring and Squat felt like I was slipping back into innocence. It was both joyous and scary to watch my legs become just one set among dozens of lady-legs in the mirror-covered walls. I was like a piece of ice in a cloud when the temperature rises that last half-a-degree and it becomes water once again: I could do nothing but fall with everyone else. The one person facing the wrong way — our instructor — would bark something out, and our chorus of sighs was as together as our mindless legs.


Eventually, I quit aerobics. It was too hard: I had to show up on time, keep buying new ugly outfits when my old ones acquired unsightly stains, and the pack was still giving me dirty looks after all those months — I think their endorphin-honed radar picked up that I wasn’t there for the same reasons they were: weight control and health benefits. They could spot the group exercise pervert in their midst!


The next step was so obvious — it was like finally realizing your true nature and hitting yourself in the face that it took this long. Group sex! Group sex has the copycat quality of aerobics or cheerleading, and the lonely feel of running, all at once. Orgies are born of the rebel’s secret longing for the mob. People who take part in group sex don’t necessarily like it. But they believe in life! They’re democratic. They know that all people have something to offer, and some right to receive. Whereas the abstainers, I believe they’re afraid of something. Exposure? Synchronicity itself, which means the temporary abolition of your personality, your individuality? (A stream is no longer a stream where it joins the river.) Beauty is ephemeral and, I believe, not to be hogged. (So why is it, you ask, that group sex participants are so often ? well, okay, they’re ugly! Yes, but nevermind that — we speak not here of aquiline noses, but of a generosity of hearts and genitals.)


But my thinking went wrong somewhere mid-leap from aerobics to orgies. Because unlike a cheerleading routine or aerobics workout or even a dance, the sex act cannot be memorized. Well, of course, eventually with one’s spouse there does get to be a usual order of procedure. But no one starts out with an individual cheerleading style they deeply, greedily need to express. We can fall in with the pack and lose our personality for the length of the game and it doesn’t hurt our soul. Sex is the complete opposite of all that. Perhaps sex is the Anti-Synchronicity!


In sex, one person wants to be talked to, another to be overpowered, another to be friendly. And in group sex, which we picture as beautifully as the synchronized swimming of genitals, we must respond correctly and uniquely to every person involved or else there will be awkward misery. So, we must be romantic, aggressive, silly and submissive all at once — and be in the mood for all those things coming our way too. If psychologists are right and we put on a different face for every encounter, then we’re four-faced in an orgy. Maybe that’s what that guy with grizzled chest hair means when he offers to “blow your mind.”


My highly scientific opinion is that we achieve orgasm not only by friction-producing activities, but by becoming a different person. You are Desired-Needed-Wanted person, or Cruel-Lying person, or Married-Person, or The-Boss-In-The-Back-Of-The-Limo-And-Your-Lover- Is-Your-Nubile-Trembling-Virgin-Girl-Secretary person. Hibernation of the true, lonely self frees up the id, legs spread and the orgasm hurtles down unhindered. Even turning into Person-Having-Sex can be enough of a transformation to start the orgasm process. Does that seem ridiculous, when you read it? Well just look at physics: A chair is nothing but rotating electrons; how can we safely sit on movement? We can’t, and we do. And if there happen to be three people in your bed — vying to go down on you and to be gone down on — then you treat each differently, and you are different with each, but it’s simultaneous, and your head pops open and smoke comes out. One of these times I think I might die.

Lisa Carver is the author of the books Dancing Queen, Rollerderby, The Lisa Diaries and Drugs Are Nice. She’s written for Hustler, Index, Icon, Feed, Newsday and Playboy, among others. She lives in New Hampshire.

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