Saturday, May 26, 2007

A Modest Proposal for the Enhancement of the English Language

This was written over a year ago, and never posted due to a massive case of chickening out. But, after this past week, I have nothing to fear from the kind of reaction something as silly as this could get:

I've never meant this to be an "all-ages" blog, but I have previously avoided particularly raunchy issues. (Mostly because I know my mother reads this, and I've never been the type to be comfortable swearing in front of my mom.)

Well, mom (and anyone else easily offended), leave now. Really. You won't want to read this.

I'll leave a little space here, just in case.

It's like spoiler space, only different.

Just enough to get the naughty bits out of sight.

There: that should be enough.

Toni Bentley's book The Surrender is pretty lousy by any yardstick: it's enormously overwritten, and shows a degree of self-involvement unusual even by the rarefied standards of the modern memoir. Her navel-gazing even keeps it from being particularly sexy; she wrote eighty thousand words or so about how much she loves being fucked up the ass, and the reader just wants her to shut up. I read it soon after it was published -- out of pure, unadulterated prurient interest, I admit. (I'm not proud.) But even though it was a short book steeped in sex (and deviant, exciting, forbidden sex at that), it was dull and felt like a waste of time.

(It also made me wonder -- along with all of the other men who secretly read it and will never say so -- if all of the women who enjoy various types of deviant, exciting, forbidden sex are as crazy and self-centered as Bentley. I'm still not sure if that thought is saddening or encouraging: that a relatively sane, normal man has no chance at Forbidden Love or that we're not missing anything because these gals are all batshit insane.)

Anyway, I've never been able to even make a Surrender reference in a joking way at a cocktail party, so reading it has brought no joy or happiness into my life (something I could previously say only about that old loser Henry James). But maybe I've finally been able to change that, and perhaps I can, in a very small way, enrich the English language as I go.

I think Toni Bentley's odd little book can help us create a new word for a common male feeling. I'll explain, but, first, let's set the scene:
Lady or slut, I wear high-heeled mules and keep them on throughout -- or, at least, I try to. The sound of those shoes hitting the floor, pounded off me, one by one, is his sign that things are going well, that now we're rocking, that now she's lost control of her facade, her fears, even her shoes. It's usually when he's deep in my ass that I can't cling any longer to those heels. (The Surrender, p.119)

Horrible, isn't it? And I spared you the three page sequence of Bentley getting ready for Ass-man (I swear to god I am not making that name up) to visit by completely revamping her body, apartment, and life.

Back to the subject at hand: I propose a new transitive verb. To "bentley" someone is to fuck her in the ass until her shoes fall off.

Here's how I expect it to be used:

  • "Damn! See that blonde by the fountain? I gotta bentley that."


  • "John, I'm sorry. I didn't just sleep with your girlfriend. I bentleyed her on your couch."

Or even:

  • "Baby, you're so fine, you deserve a bentley!"
I said "woman" above because I don't expect this will be as useful to the gay community -- men don't typically wear shoes that fall off that way, and are vastly less likely to wear footwear during sex -- but if you're gay and you find this a useful term, more power to you.

It will be most useful before it's in wide use (as with many bits of sexual slang), since it can be used in public sub rosa. So go forth and bentley...or at least talk about it.


Anonymous said...

Andrew, are you putting your free time to productive use?

Andrew Wheeler said...

Johan: "Free time?" Free time!? I've been busier this week than I can ever remember being in my working life -- absolutely frantic.

(I can't say if any of it is useful, but I certainly have been spinning quickly. I've sort-of settled down for the weekend, I guess, though I haven't had more than five minutes to read for pleasure since Tuesday.)

Di Francis said...

I am amused. I shall hopefully implement your suggestion. I think I need a tee-shirt. Bentley-off!



Anonymous said...

Stop, stop! My abs are cramping from laughing so hard! I'll never hear the word "Bentley" again without busting into the same kind of wickedly gleeful howling laughter that currently possesses me. I don't know how I'm going to explain it to my husband without making him read your blog, though....

Anonymous said...

A whole generation of British chauffeurs are going to be deeply disturbed by their new American mistresses demanding "the Bentley at once" and then being disappointed when the driver brings the car around.

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