Dec 29, 2007

The Ugliest Grail in Town

Father Juliano's Dream Car

Put a Bag On That Car. A NYT story about Branford Connecticut Catholic priest, Alfred A. Juliano, and his obsession with car design. Father Juliano, attempts to create the world’s safest car, which results in the ugliest thing ever seen on four wheels.

If you’ve been following along, I’m considering cars to be symbolic of vessels/cups/grails - the divine feminine. Any story combining Catholics and cars is like nitro-powered symbolism. Catholics (the traditional guardians of the grail - Mary) have, like Father Juliano, turned the grail religion into something pretty damn ugly, and then top-coated it with a gorgeous “candy apple” paint job. Silk purses come to mind.

Lately, the Catholic paint job is showing obvious wear, which opens the meme gates to the Jedi Knights Templar - the next pretenders to the throne. Which to me is small comfort - kinda like choosing between Democrats and Republicans. At the end of the day, they’re all playing on the same team.

It may well be that the divine feminine is inherently wild and dangerous, like a big cat, and while the attempt at Catholic abstinence (or Red Cross Safe Sex) is understandable, that is entirely missing the point. Maybe sex isn’t sexy if it’s not somehow... dangerous. LIke a sports car. Car = risk = sex = grail.

The Shaguar

In Austin Powers - International Man of Mystery, Mike Myers drives a Jaguar XK8 - a spotted cat. Austin is a male sex god - Dionysus - an archetype that really IS a mystery to the West. Overt male sexuality, while no longer strictly taboo, is still strongly discouraged. Men can be men in every way a man can be, as long as we don’t show actual dick. See Adam Star’s post at Inside the Cosmic Cube: Mystos Mustela for his inspired take on another Dionysian - Wolverine.

After Austin is revived from cryogenic sleep, he is taken to a room where he is presented with his possessions - which include a “male enhancement” vacuum pump (the black hole/vacuum/ultimate power source of the universe). Like Peter, Austin denies ownership at least three times - though in the end, he confesses. A remarkable scene.

My middle name is "Danger”

The short-lived television series The Ugliest Girl in Town made its debut in 1968:

Timothy Blair is a Hollywood talent agent. He falls in love with Julie Renfield, a British actress, visiting the United States to do a movie. After that movie is finished, she returns to England. To get his mind off her, Timothy dresses as a hippie and poses for his brother Gene, a photographer. When the photos appear in a magazine a modeling agent in England sees it and assumes that it's a woman, and he offers "her" a job. Knowing this would be the only chance to be with Julie, Tim accepts and dubs himself Timmie. Tim has two weeks vacation time to spend as much time with Julie as he can, but when as he is about to leave with his brother, Gene loses £11,000 gambling. Unless he pays him back, Tim has to continue being Timmie for a while longer.

The Ugliest Girl in Town... is a boy.

Agent Smith relaxing around the house

Back in the day, women were forbidden to act in theatre, so men played the feminine roles. The sex of the actor is actually besides the point, and if you’ve ever seen a good drag show, you understand - it’s all about attitude. The feminine must be expressed, even when men are the only actors available. The masculine is made feminine. It’s a drama still playing out in gay bars, every night of the week.

This is a disjointed post, and if you've followed along it's in spite of my writing, not because of it. I'm grappling with the roles of gender, the masculine and feminine, tops and bottoms, and the mercurial nature inherent in the sexual unions of men. When I look at the world as a sort of divine play - a cosmic dance, then I begin to wonder about my role, and the role of my people. In less than 40 years, gayness has come along way, baby - from "the love that dare not say its name", to the favorite vice of priests and senators. I suppose that's progress, but I could wish for more.

Sometimes I think gay people are ugly ducklings, somehow lost from our true home, being raised by another species! We're not ducks at all - we're swans - and one day we'll real-ize it. In gay slang, a bodybuilder is a “Muscle Mary”, which pretty well wraps it up.

Tom Katt - born again porn star


JB said...

Michael, first of all, that car at the beginning isn't that ugly, and I might have a go at it after a few drinks.

Second, the role of homosexuals is clearly artistic in nature. I remember a Native American creation myth (not sure which tribe though, Lakota maybe?), saying that the first two human beings were gay men, and that the Great Spirit created them to paint the world in all the colors of the rainbow (I s**t you not), because the "Two-Hearts" (as many tribes call them) have an eye for beauty.

You should also remember the Greek/Platonian version of the story, that in the beginning there three genders, pure men (who were only attracted to other pure men), pure women (who were only attracted to other pure women), and male-female hybrids, who scared the s**t out of the gods and who were later split in half both physically and spiritually, and became the poor lonesome heterosexuals, always literally searching for their OTHER HALF.

Lastly, I should mention that I've been having sexual fantasies about Chris Crocker (the "Leave Britney alone!" guy), and I'm strangely comfortable with the idea. He's pretty cute. ;)

Adam Star said...

See "Eye on the Tiger" for my comments on this post. Just trying to keep things as disjointed as possible...

Michael said...

I was doing some editing this morning, and I accidentally pressed "save as draft", which made it disappear, right as Adam was commenting, which I think, made his comment vanish as well. Sorry about that. It did come in via email, and I'll post it after this if it remains lost in the ether.

JB - thanks for bringing these other creation myths to my attention - fascinating. Chris Crocker, hopelessly devoted to a goddess who barely even knows he's alive. Hmmmm. :-)

JB said...

"Chris Crocker, hopelessly devoted to a goddess who barely even knows he's alive".

You bastard, lol :D

How DARE you reach into my subconscious mind like that? And comparing "my" Manon with dumpy Britney is like comparing the finest red wine with diet RC Cola.

But seriously, the last time Britney was "sexy" was during the first half of her first video (dressed as a schoolgirl) years ago. ;)

Michael said...

Adam said (in Eye on the Tiger):

"Michael, thanks for the plug. Loving the Austin Powers as Dionysus. Of course! "Do I make you horny?" is probably the most apt Taurian Dionysian phrase imaginable. Austin typically appears clad in wine colored velvet, or blue (for the blue apples/grapes?). Then, check this out, his nemesis/alter-ego/brother is one of those illuminated Doctors I haven't gotten to yet, Doctor Evil. Their conflict is pure Apollo/Dionysus."

Yea, baby! Dr. Evil is amazing. Note the grey outfit - blue vs. grey. He's dissatisfied with his son (Seth! Green) so he makes a mini clone of himself, and I can't help but see a genital (Genesis) reference there as well.

One of my favorite parts of this movie is when Dr. Evil chastises No. 2 for being more concerned about making money than doing evil, which is a hilarious inversion of "the love of money is the root of all evil".

I could go on, well, I guess I already have.

Michael said...

JB - lol! Which reminds me of a song:

Kiss me with your mouth
Your lips are better than wine
But wine is all I have
Will your love ever be mine?

Devin said...

Another great 'oldie' post Michael!!
the comment 'after a couple of drinks i might have a go at it' made me laugh -the car story was fascinating-and somewhat bizarre to me -I am always able to follow your thinking whether you are 'wondering/wandering' a bit in your writing -which is unusual -to me anyway-or 'on target' so to speak -
I didnt realize Mr Katt was a born again --hmmmmm-he is a hot dude for sure

'alla' best to you and Var from
dEvin sin laden{:-P)>*

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