|Rectify my mudflag
story by Jim Bartley /
Feb 19 2004
Little Tommy Dodd was well acquainted with the overripe fruit at Ruth Ann’s knishery. The cafeteria always had its share of leather bags and nudgers among the brummies. He often saw Aunt Matilda there, and enjoyed watching her lollygag in the buddy booths with her chicken. Auntie also had a passion for cleaning up the kitchen — a real chutney ferret, this old coffin dodger, eating jam and poundcake at the servants’ entrance, then moving on to plums and scooby snacks, which she preferred unsliced. (Mind, every putty-pusher in the place was a jaw queen or a cakpipe cosmonaut. Bent-up otways abounded at Ruth’s peg house.)
One day Tommy arrived to find Auntie’s muck spreader jammed tight with a German helmet, mercilessly wielded by a humpy catalogue man. Tommy was hung like a mouse and quite proud of his tiny set of lace curtains, but (being a mattress muncher since boyhood) what he most loved was having his meat pillows skewered by a fat burrito. Anticipating a slam-bam, he watched dreamboat withdraw from Matilda’s pulsing stench trench. Cupid’s toothpaste began to spurt from the hunkster’s monstrous Roto-rooter, laying strings of albino custard across Auntie’s flaccid mudflaps.
Tom’s peewee piccolo twittered in his lunchbox. As Beef-a-roni tidied up, Tom quickly glanced through his recently purchased copy of Outbursts! A Queer Erotic Thesaurus. Approaching the still-panting fudge packer, he half-turned, wiggled his tush and cooed over his shoulder, “Bury your bone in my backyard, you saucalicious spunk-rat Howard.” Demigod sneered at little Tom. “Howard? I’m a Darth, Betty. Dilate your o-ring for someone else’s spigot.”
AD Peterkin is a Toronto psychiatrist with an encyclopedic potty mouth — or potty pen. Author of academic books, Peterkin has penned two other general interest books (a more wide-ranging erotic thesaurus and a history of beards). With Outbursts! he has created perhaps the ultimate queer bathroom reading. There’s nothing quite like having a dump while browsing nearly 400 euphemisms for the associated musculature. “A,” of course, is for anus, “B” for buttocks. Those are section headings, followed by roughly 250 words for the orifice and the remainder for its gluteal frame. Of course there’s considerable conceptual overlap between the buns, the crack and the hole itself. Peterkin, though somewhat cocky in name, first impresses as a sort of rampant linguistic proctologist. His lexicon offers more rear entries than for any other body part except (you guessed it) the almighty tubesteak. This book boggles the inner dictionary even as it tickles the nether parts.
Let’s go back to Tom and Matilda. Ending with surly Darth, the paragraphs above employ a mere 50 of Peterkin’s terms for gay folk, their bod parts and their favourite activities. Aunt Matilda is a snickering term for an older gay man. Tommy Dodd is your generic fag. A knishery (need you ask?) is a free sausage outlet. Chutney is what accumulates behind your o-ring. Balls and cocks are plums and scooby snacks. Bent-up otways are horny pervs. German helmets, mudflaps, spigots... well, if you need them spelled out you’re erotically challenged.
You may legitimately wonder where a word like “otway” came from. Or “gingambobs” (balls), or “gadooch” (vagina), or “gynander” (lesbian). Peterkin won’t enlighten you on these and other intriguing words, but he can be forgiven — there is simply too much arcane info here to be explained in 150 pages. Still, on every page a handful of arresting and/or bewildering terms are given interpretive notes — the most gratifying part of the book. You will learn that when a British Matilda refers to balls as “quongs,” the old dear is employing a disused gay lexicon once exclusive to Britain, called Polari — a code language unique to the place and period (1930s to ’70s). “Bod,” “trade,” “troll” and “basket” are all terms from Polari that have survived and crossed oceans.
There are 10 pages of synonyms for gay male, nine pages for cock. Every twinkletoes has his shmendrik. Lesbians have three pages of monikers, while their honeypots merit merely another three. Every tootsie has her map of Tasmania. (Dust off that world atlas, you housebound Lilith.) The lesbo deficit may suggest a certain bias on Peterkin’s part, but mostly reflects the historical record — over two millennia of global male swagger and phallus-love, gay and otherwise.
Peterkin’s bibliography lists 32 books and 19 websites, but he doesn’t need proof of the digging he’s done. Park this book next to your bidet for a year and you may spontaneously start dropping euphemisms to silence a room. Or leave it by the bed. If someone asks you to talk dirty you can go full throttle. “Yeah, oh, yeah... rectify that mudeye you whoopsie felcher... hose me, hose me! You like that bit of Navy cake, doncha... boop me, Betty. Boop me!”
* Jim Bartley writes on books in every other issue.
OUTBURSTS! A QUEER EROTIC THESAURUS.
Arsenal Pulp Press.
149 pages. $19.95.