sasha_feather: trinity from The Matrix (trinity)
[personal profile] sasha_feather
Or, spirit of the staircase!

I participated today in a free screening for oral and throat cancers. It took 5 minutes and I was feeling uncharacteristically talkative to the people running it. For example I told the woman taking the forms: "You should have check boxes for male, female, and other." (I doubt she took me seriously.)

So after I finished having the screening (the doc looks in your mouth with a flashlight), I was talking a man who was passing out the flyers. He was a friendly middle-aged guy that was sort of easy to talk to. He told me the risk factors for these cancers are tobacco use, alcohol use, and HPV (human pappilloma viruses).

"Well," I said, "Hopefully that will go down because now there is a vaccine." (Gardasil.)

"Or, teens could just have regular sex!" he joked, and laughed. He was referring to the fact that oral sex, ie blow jobs, are a risk factor for HPV causing cancers of the mouth and throat.

"Well, that's not going to happen, they just need to get vaccinated!" I said at the time.

What I wished I had done is either gotten scarily calm, or scarily angry, and scared him into NEVER SAYING THAT AGAIN. It was totally inappropriate for a number of reasons.

1. "Regular sex" is a figment of the imagination that exists in a subset of straight people's minds, and is centered around penis-in-vagina hetero sex. It erases queer sex, oral sex, manual sex, kinky sex, etc etc etc.

2. His so-called "regular sex" still transmits HPV-- to women, who can then get cervical cancer.

3. There was more than a strong whiff of victim-blaming to what he said-- if people get cancer from HPV, it's their fault.

People are such assholes! This guy told me he used to be a study coordinator!

ETA I just occurred to me that this man could have been attempting to flirt with me by making a risque joke about blowjobs. Such a lesbian am I-- I was totally oblivious.

Date: 2011-05-11 11:29 pm (UTC)
meloukhia: A person dancing in the rain, viewed from the waist down (Dance time)
From: [personal profile] meloukhia
YIPES. That is appalling. It's so hard to come up with a response to things like that in the moment.

Date: 2011-05-11 11:29 pm (UTC)
laceblade: Katara and Zuko...AS NINJAS! (ATLA: Ninjas: Katara & Zuko)
From: [personal profile] laceblade
Gross. Was this the pretentious douchebag standing outside the cafeteria?

Date: 2011-05-11 11:43 pm (UTC)
laceblade: Kumiko and Reina from Hibike! Euphonium anime, Reina holding Kumiko's face w/one hand, faces close enough to almost touch. (TSCC: SO HELP ME)
From: [personal profile] laceblade
ALSO-ALSO, WTF, like teenagers having sex is the only way HPV gets transmitted?? PEOPLE STOP BEING HORNY WHEN THEY TURN 20. TRUFAX.

Date: 2011-05-11 11:46 pm (UTC)
epershand: An ampersand (Default)
From: [personal profile] epershand

Date: 2011-05-11 11:47 pm (UTC)
epershand: An ampersand (Default)
From: [personal profile] epershand

Date: 2011-05-12 12:00 am (UTC)
epershand: An ampersand (Default)
From: [personal profile] epershand
Or maybe he just thinks only cunnilinguis is normal sex.That's not a bad attitude for someone to have!

Date: 2011-05-12 12:25 am (UTC)
meloukhia: A person lying down, back to the camera, with long reddish hair streaming across the ground (Lying down)
From: [personal profile] meloukhia

Date: 2011-05-11 11:55 pm (UTC)
holyschist: Image of a medieval crocodile from Herodotus, eating a person, with the caption "om nom nom" (Default)
From: [personal profile] holyschist
I...don't think I can interpret that as flirting, because if it is it's fucking appalling. ("Hi, I'd like to fuck you but I only believe in PIV sex in the missionary position" = not the best pickup line.)

Date: 2011-05-12 12:25 am (UTC)
meloukhia: A drawing of an elephant (Elephant drawing)
From: [personal profile] meloukhia
Yeah, it doesn't seem like flirting to me. Then again, I am very bad at reading flirtatiousness. But uhm. Yeah.

Date: 2011-05-12 12:29 am (UTC)
epershand: An ampersand (Default)
From: [personal profile] epershand
Agreed, that doesn't sound flirtatious to me. Unless he REALLY REALLY REALLY doesn't know how to flirt.

Date: 2011-05-12 12:40 am (UTC)
holyschist: Image of a medieval crocodile from Herodotus, eating a person, with the caption "om nom nom" (Default)
From: [personal profile] holyschist
Regardless, what a jerk!

Date: 2011-05-12 12:15 am (UTC)
jesse_the_k: Perfectly circlular white brain-like fungus growing on oak tree (CKR fuck no!)
From: [personal profile] jesse_the_k

You did pretty well in the moment.

My spirit-of-the-staircase would have been a sophisticated, well-thought, kick in the head.

Date: 2011-05-12 01:57 am (UTC)
j00j: rainbow over east berlin plattenbau apartments (Default)
From: [personal profile] j00j
I am notoriously bad at noticing flirting, but if that is flirting it is really terrible flirting D: D: D: . Nothing like implying that an important part of many peoples' sex lives is irregular! And from a person I assume works in the medical field! Thanks for judging. And if he's a study coordinator he should be better at not making assumptions =P

I was at a party last weekend where someone called various kinky sex acts "perversions" (and not in the "ooh fun" sense). I am *so happy* to be back in Philly with my usual queer/queer-friendly kink-friendly crowd. Argh. ETA: And I had no idea how to respond at the time, since I wasn't exactly feeling safe or wanting to explain that he was talking about me. Later I decided I should next time make some sort of comment about how I didn't think safe and consensual things adults choose to do were perversions. [personal profile] skola also brought up looking for some sort of educator/advocate class-- I'm not likely to do a ton of education, but it might be useful.
Edited Date: 2011-05-12 02:00 am (UTC)

Date: 2011-05-15 02:31 am (UTC)
j00j: rainbow over east berlin plattenbau apartments (Default)
From: [personal profile] j00j
*hugs* Thanks.

Yeah, I tend to freeze up and not know what to say in situations like that, especially when it's personal and not something I've dealt with before. It was easier to call people on transphobic comments at the same event, since I've had practice with that. And it's not about me/it's sometimes easier for me to call people out on behalf of others, rather than on my own behalf...

Date: 2011-05-12 06:22 pm (UTC)
amadi: A bouquet of dark purple roses (Default)
From: [personal profile] amadi
I'm kind of the queen of l'esprit d'escalier, (and I want a pretty French tiara for it, dammit) and I tend to channel that into slightly scoldingly toned educational phone calls or letters to superiors. I'd be all over the study coordinator for this one, because that's how I roll.

I can't imagine the chilling effect on study participation that douchebag's comments could have if he said them to the wrong person.

Date: 2011-05-15 05:11 pm (UTC)
eggcrack: Icon based on the painting "Kullervon kirous ja sotaanlahto" (Default)
From: [personal profile] eggcrack
UGH. Sleazy insensitive doctors are so much fun, eh? >_


sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)

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