In Our Darkest Hours, We Celebrate the Best of Humanity

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand and Twenty, it is exceedingly easy to view our current state of affairs through a pessimistic lens.

Over here in the United States of America, this past week has been rough. Worldwide, the past three months have been a doozy. Nothing seems normal anymore. In calmer times, “boring” is considered a bad thing. Today, we’d all take “boring” in a heartbeat. I know I would.

Between COVID-19, economic shutdowns, financial anxieties, rampant unemployment, and here in the U.S., protests and riots caused by the death of an unarmed black man at the hands of police, it’s understandable why our opinion of humanity would be at its lowest. What started as an outrageous tragedy in Minneapolis has cascaded into a nationwide nightmare chock full of angry demonstrations, social unrest, riots, property destruction, reckless endangerment of innocent bystanders, and lives uprooted. It doesn’t appear as though the people smashing windows and burning down buildings have ever considered the negative effects this will have on poor people and racial minorities. But then again, thinking isn’t an activity an angry mob will often participate in while throwing bricks at car windshields.

It would be an overstatement (an insensitive one, to be exact) to say that this is our Darkest Hour. This isn’t blitzkrieg. This isn’t the Nazi invasion of Europe. This isn’t the Holodomor or the Holocaust or the Rwandan Genocide or the Tiananmen Square Massacre. But that doesn’t mean people aren’t hurting. Around the globe, the novel coronavirus is still killing thousands of people and causing social/economic/political destruction that will last for years to come. So this is less about our current situation and more about Bad Times in general, no matter what form it takes.

During the Bad Times, people often resort to enjoying the basic things that make life worth living. Food, cooking, music, art, movies, sports, literature, poetry, gardening, exercise, and so on. In times of uncertainty, we seek certainty. And enjoying a bowl of spaghetti and meatballs is certain to bring you joy. Or watching your favorite childhood movie. Or reading your favorite book again and again. Or tending to your plants. Or painting the sunset from the comfort of your back porch. We know that we’re in the midst of the Bad Times, but hopefully these storms will pass and we will see bright clear skies once again in short order.

But in addition to certainty (and stability), we also seek reminders of a better future. It’s not just relishing in past glories, but also looking forward to happier days ahead. And this can be done by appreciating humanity at its best. It’s easy to see humanity at its worst (just turn on the TV or scroll through endlessly terrible Twitter takes). But humanity at its best is right around the corner if you know where to look.

For me – and, I suspect, for many of you as well – I look to female bodybuilders as my shining beacon of hope. It didn’t occur to me until fairly recently that part of the reason why I admire female bodybuilders so much is because they represent the pinnacle of human achievement. They don’t shatter the glass ceiling. They prove to us that there is no ceiling to begin with. That ceiling is an artificial social construct that exists for no other reason than we think it exists. Unfortunately, believing it exists is enough to give it so much power.

But those who are able to escape from the limitations of other people’s narrow imaginations will find themselves accomplishing things they never knew were possible. Society says a woman with big muscles isn’t sexy. Alina Popa proves them wrong. Haters say men will never accept or celebrate female bodybuilders. The legions of guys who attend bodybuilding shows, pay for sessions, and support FBB entrepreneurs would like a word. Whenever you try to put an FBB into a box, she will inevitable break out of it and carry on with or without your approval.

When I see photos of Cindy Landolt, I see the Peak of Human Potential. Not “Female Potential,” but actual “Human Potential.” Miss Landolt is more than just a regular flesh-and-blood human being. Her body is art. Her life is a celebration of what it means to be human. Her achievements inspire those around her to become better. It’s as though Cindy has transcended her original form and reached a new level of purpose. Her purpose is to add beauty to the world. As long as she lives, Cindy is just like a rainbow, mountain range, cherry blossom tree, or sunrise over the horizon. She’s a beautiful part of nature who reminds us that the Good Times didn’t go away. They’ve just been temporarily overshadowed by the Bad Times.

FBBs will never become mainstream, but that’s not the point. My point is to demonstrate why female bodybuilders are important to our lives. We are deeply attracted to them, both physically and emotionally. During times of stress, tumultuousness, and social upheaval, we desire to be reminded of things that brought us happiness. For many of us, strong beautiful women bring us this happiness.

Instead of focusing on humanity at its worst – which is easy to do right now – we’d rather focus on humanity at its best. At its brightest. At its most inspirational. Female bodybuilders are just the magic elixir we need to satiate this craving. You cannot help but look at a female bodybuilder and think to yourself, “Damn! I didn’t know people could get that sexy!”

Indeed, such a feat is in fact possible. When I see photos and videos of female bodybuilders flexing their biceps, I see the limits of human potential being challenged. Expectations of what is or isn’t possible subverted. I see women who refuse to be shackled down by sexist beliefs and take matters into their own hands. Sometimes, quite literally. They’re picking up weights with their hands, with each repetition making them stronger and stronger and stronger. Just take 30 seconds to scroll through Jessica Sestrem’s IG account. Don’t tell me she looks “manly” or “unfeminine.” Don’t tell me her large muscles make her a tomboy. She’s as girly as someone can possibly be. And she has enormous biceps that put most guys to shame (even guys who regularly workout). If she were to get even bigger, do you doubt that she’ll continue to be as gorgeous as she currently is? I don’t.

No reasonable person expects FBBs to transform society at large. But for the small number of us who do appreciate these ladies for who they are, they offer us comfort during the Bad Times. The Dark Times. Our Darkest Hours. They remind us that humanity at its best can be as beautiful, aspirational, and transcendent as anything you can imagine. People can be terrible at times. But every once in a while, we deserve to have our faith rewarded. We deserve a sliver of light in a world of darkness.

Female bodybuilders are that light. Maybe not for everyone, but for us. No matter how insignificant that may seem, that’s all they need to be for us. A light.

Not a savior. Not a miracle. Not a cure for all that ails us. But a light. A bright shining light.

It may not seem like that’s enough. But it is. That’s more than enough.

Thank Heavens for the Clit Pump

Denise Masino proudly showing off her best asset.

Throughout the history of human civilization, there have been several inventions that changed the trajectory of society for the better.

The wheel. The compass. Gunpowder. The printing press. The combustion engine. Vaccinations. The lightbulb. The telephone. The automobile. The computer. The Internet.

These new technologies revolutionized how human beings communicated, learned, traded, survived, and lived. Without getting too deep into the weeds, suffice to say that these inventions – and its descendants that we still use today – have made it possible for our life expectancies to go up and the global population to boom to more than 7 billion people and counting.

Yet, there is one particular technology that we cannot overlook. We must not underestimate its importance to our shared humanity. To not acknowledge and recognize its impact would be intellectually dishonest.

What am I referring to?

The clit pump, of course!

Huh?

Well, that might be a slight exaggeration, but hopefully you get the idea in a tongue-in-cheek sort of way.

The clit pump, in case you aren’t acquainted with its existence yet, is a sex toy that increases blood flow into a woman’s top erogenous zone using a small tube and hand pump that creates suction around the clitoris and labia. It is a device that is derived from the penis pump, a gadget that essentially does the same thing for men. The vacuum created inside the cylindrical tube both increases blood flow to the clitoris and enhances its size. This leads to the nerve endings in the clitoral head becoming more sensitive – and subsequently heightens sexual pleasure.

Women tend use clit pumps to masturbate, as foreplay before actual sex, or alternatively on the nipples, which is also an erogenous zone. Since lots of female bodybuilders have larger than normal clits, it makes perfect sense why they’d love to use a clit pump – and why fans of female bodybuilders love watching them use it. It’s a textbook win-win situation.

Any casual fan of female bodybuilding has probably watched a video or two (or three, or four, or five) of a female bodybuilder using a clit pump to pleasure herself. Some prominent FBBs who’ve participated in such videos include Denise Masino, Amber DeLuca, Brandi Mae Akers, Angela Salvagno, Ashlee Chambers, and Kathy Connors. There have probably been others, but this should give you the idea that this activity isn’t rare or unusual.

Angela Salvagno is redefining how we think women “should” look.

The benefit a clit pump provides a woman shouldn’t have to be explained in further depth. You can probably imagine how much pleasure it gives them to have such a sensitive part of the body stimulated in a sucking manner. Um, yeah.

However, female bodybuilders are a different breed of woman. And fans of female bodybuilders recognize this fact as clearly as anyone. Watching a female bodybuilder use a clit pump is an experience unlike any other. Yes, that could seem like hyperbole, but it does indeed deserve special acknowledgment.

The reasons why we love female bodybuilders and their big clits have been outlined before, but here’s a brief summary: In short, a large clitoris is an outward expression of an FBB’s sexual sovereignty. Unlike the vagina, which is an internal organ that serves – at least from a reproductive standpoint – the purposes of receiving a man’s penis and birthing a child, the clitoris is an external-facing organ that exists for the sole purpose of giving a woman sexual pleasure. It’s hypersensitive and provides her satisfying orgasms. However, because the clit is normally very small, our culture at large (as well as other cultures around the world) doesn’t always recognize its importance to a woman’s sexual health. It’s not talked about at school or at home. Thus, many women across the globe never realize what their clitoris is and what unique function it serves.

Men, on the other hand, have penises. The penis is a much larger external organ that is obvious in its appearance and universally understood to give a man sexual pleasure. No culture throughout human history has ever misunderstood the purpose of the penis. Therefore, boys do not grow up not knowing what purpose this organ serves and what benefits it can provide. It also gives men a sense of unearned sexual superiority because of the obvious nature of this particular organ. Women, however, do not have the luxury of possessing an outward-facing organ that serves an obvious sensual purpose. The clitoris is small and is often overshadowed by the vagina, which can be seen as a “passive” organ that only exists to please the penis during coitus.

We know that the vagina isn’t a passive organ, but that fact isn’t ingrained in our culture’s psyche. However, women who possess a larger-than-normal clitoris are a different matter. They do in fact possess an organ that is both obvious in its appearance and unambiguous in its functionality. It gives a woman pleasure, period. End of story. No need to elaborate.

So, an FBB with big muscles and a large clitoris is a special kind of woman whose sexual independence is punctuated by their enormous genitalia. They are in fact sexual beings who don’t just exist to please others, but exist for their own sake. They don’t need a man to please themselves. They don’t need another woman either, so this is not a matter of sexual orientation or preference. This is a case of sovereignty. This is a matter of our culture giving permission to women everywhere to enjoy their sex lives with or without a partner. It’s about women being able to experience orgasms without any rhyme or reason. She doesn’t need any reason to do so other than she desires to have orgasms. Whenever she wants to, how often she wants to. That is the definition of “sovereignty.” Unfortunately, this simple concept hasn’t always been universally agreed upon.

We’re better than we were in the past, but we still have a long way to go. For sure.

Whew!

A female bodybuilder fits the definition perfectly of a “strong independent woman,” yet our culture doesn’t see it that way. Our culture doesn’t really acknowledge female bodybuilders at all. They’re still at the fringes of the “mainstream” and don’t have a seat at the table. It’s a crying shame, but it’s a reality that FBBs and fans of FBBs have come to accept. For those of us who are aware of female bodybuilders and their vast accomplishments, we’ve come to appreciate their sovereignty. Their long hours at the gym, grueling dietary choices, and financial sacrifices are not lost on us. Nor is their sexuality lost on us. Far from it.

Ashlee Chambers filling that tube with her girly meat.

We all know Denise Masino possesses a lot of meat between her legs. A long clitoris, thick labia, and a fleshy pink vagina await anyone fortunate enough to be able to witness her substantial feminine endowments. But here’s the kicker: Her enormous genitalia doesn’t exist to please a man. Nor does it exist to please a woman. Instead, it only exists to please herself.

A clit pump only emphasizes that point. When you see Denise’s large clitoris become even larger, your eyes become so big you’re afraid they’ll pop out of their sockets. It serves as a valuable reminder that Denise is a sexually independent being. She might be showing off for the camera, but the real purpose of her performance is to prove a critically important point: Her body is capable of providing her immense sexual pleasure and she isn’t afraid to explore these possibilities to its fullest limits.

Denise, and every other FBB who’s shot clit pump videos, is willing to titillate her audience as well as educate them. She’s teaching them an important lesson in female sexuality. She’s schooling us on the fact that women are not passive creatures who need a man to please them. Rather, women are sexually autonomous and don’t have to apologize for being so. These ladies may not mean to make this statement, but they are regardless.

A clit pump, therefore, is a fantastic invention not just because of the primary function it serves, but also for its secondary function. It drives home the point in the most bombastic manner possible that women do not exist to give men pleasure. Women are not second-class citizens. They don’t have to be subordinate to anyone. These concepts are arbitrarily drawn up by our culture and have been passed down from generation to generation. When you see an FBB’s clitoral meat nearly fill up the entire tube, your jaw drops to the floor not just because you’re “impressed” by what she has, but also because you finally realize what you’ve been missing all these years: The way women experience sex isn’t radically different than how men experience sex.

Kathy Connors is not afraid to show us her best features.

Yes, there are remarkable differences. Biologically, male and female genitalia are very different. No reason to contest that. Yet, where they are similar is the basic configuration of how orgasm is achieved. Stimulate the genitals during the proper state of arousal…and orgasm will ensue.

This stimulation can be provided by a man. Or a woman. Or herself. Or by a toy. No matter what, the result is the same: Bliss.

There’s even one video where Denise jerks her clit off between her fingers, similar to how a man would masturbate. She strokes her endowment up and down until she comes. Of course, whether she actually climaxed in that moment is beside the point. What’s more important is how much guys watching this can identify with Denise’s actions. We’ve all been there in some form or fashion. It’s supremely arousing to see a lady do what we’ve been doing since we were teenage boys. Denise is a fine looking lady who’s strong, confident, intelligent, sexy, and proud of what her body can do for her. She isn’t ashamed. She isn’t embarrassed to have a large clitoris that provokes Internet trolls to make denigrating comments like “She’s actually a man!” or “Gross! That’s what steroids will do to you!” Denise isn’t a man of course, and not only are these idiots totally wrong, they’re missing out on enjoying an entire facet of femininity that many of us deeply appreciate.

FBBs who use clit pumps aren’t redefining “femininity.” Instead, they’re expanding the definition of it. Big muscles, large genitalia, and an assertive personality can also be feminine. FBBs aren’t trying to be like men; they’re trying to be a better version of themselves. When we see Angela Salvagno stretch her golden brown labia as far out as it can go, we’re reminded that she’s showing off her feminine body in all its glory. We’re not seeing a masculine-looking figure inhabiting a female body. We’re seeing a nontraditional womanly body that doesn’t conform to our preconceived notions of what “feminine” should look like.

These truths can go over the heads of far too many of us. However, clit pumps play an integral role in tearing down these barriers. When that clear tube is filled with 2-3 inches of meat, our philosophical paradigm shifts completely. We finally recognize the irrefutable truth that female bodybuilders are exactly that: females who build their bodies up to proportions that shatter our expectations. And they build their bodies in ways that go beyond their muscles. It includes their genitals, too.

Witnessing a cute girly girl like Brandi Mae Akers filling her tube with a couple inches of clitoral meat really proves the point that our perceptions of “masculine” and “feminine” are completely wrong. Our brains struggle to comprehend how someone so unmistakably feminine can also have such large genitals. How is that even possible? Then, she jokes about walking around in public with the tube still attached, giggling at the possibility of strangers stopping dead in their tracks when they see a pretty young lady like herself sport a substantial endowment between her legs. What a sight that would be!

Brandi Mae Akers says “peek-a-boo!”

Whether we’re dealing with a pretty girl-next-door like Brandi Mae or an intimidating Alpha Female like Amber DeLuca, both of these ladies force us to reevaluate how we should view the differences between men and women. Personally, when I see Amber proudly filling that tube with her large clit, I don’t feel insecure or apprehensive. Instead, I feel a sense of kinship and commonality with her. I feel like she isn’t all that different from me. She’s obviously quite different from me in every aspect of life, but in that moment I feel as though we’re two sides of the same coin.

Male/female. Masculine/feminine. Blah. Why does it matter? What’s the difference? Differences do exist, but why are we so focused on them all the time? Can’t we just celebrate our distinctions, recognize our similarities, and enjoy what every single one of us can bring to the table? I pray the world may wake up and finally realize that we’re tearing ourselves apart for no good reason.

In closing, we should be grateful that there are a number of female bodybuilders who are not afraid to pump their clits for the entire world to see. They’re not ashamed of what Mother Nature has endowed them with, as well as the side effects of living life as an elite bodybuilder. But it’s not just that they’re not afraid; they’re proud of their bodies. They take pride in being unique. They relish being able to shatter our preconceived notions of human sexuality and gender identities. They’re taking all of us to school one way or another.

Every time they film themselves using a clit pump, they’re planting seeds inside our imaginations of what women are actually capable of being. They aren’t people who “lack a penis,” but instead are people who affirmatively “have a vagina, labia, and clitoris.” These parts do not singularly define their identity, but they certainly play a role in shaping how we view and treat them. We take pleasure in watching them experience pleasure. And whether we know it or not, we’re becoming better people, little by little.

As they expand their clits to larger lengths, they’re also expanding our hearts to newer heights.

Like A Tiger Stalking Her Prey: Comparing a Muscular Woman to a Wild Beast

Desiree Ellis is a beast, no question about it.
Desiree Ellis is a beast, no question about it.

Imagine a hungry tiger, crouching low in the sagebrush, stalking an unsuspecting prey. An ill-fated rabbit is drinking water out of a river, unaware of his inevitable fate. He prepares to return back to his home until…

The tiger strikes. The prey is caught. The prey bleeds to death. The tiger eats its defeated victim and walks away from the brief encounter satiated and happy.

The rabbit leaves this cruel and unforgiving world so quickly he has no idea what just happened. One moment he’s enjoying a refreshing beverage from the river, the next he’s being savagely devoured by a bloodthirsty beast searching for sustenance.

So it goes.

Mother Nature can be cruel to the weak and unprepared. Those of us fortunate to live in modern times have conveniences, societal structures, and laws that ensure we don’t need to resort to such barbarity. Human beings do from time to time have to engage in such vicious behavior for the sake of survival, but thankfully that’s the exception and not the rule. Despite its flaw, isn’t the 21st Century great?

Yet, even for us city dwellers (or, Heaven forbid, those of us who live in the suburbs!) the “jungle mindset” has not gone completely away. We may shop at grocery stores, eat at fancy restaurants, drive sporty cars, use smartphones to communicate, read books to learn new information, and enjoy indoor plumbing, but deep down inside, buried in our psyches, we still secretly yearn to live in the wild.

Mankind may have become domesticated, but nature doesn’t go away that easily. We aren’t as far off from our caveman and cavewoman days as we might think (and no, I am not referring to the pop culture fad that is the Paleo Diet). We still enjoy hunting, hiking, athletic competitions, competing with others for a mate, and “earning” our right to live. We may not build our homes out of sticks and stones like the good old days, but we work at 40-hour-a-week jobs in order to pay for the roof over our heads.

Perhaps there’s still a part of us that yearns for our Paleolithic days. Even as a casual daydream. Or as the backdrop of a fetishistic fantasy. For those of us who love female bodybuilders, this fantasy manifests itself through our constant comparison (and association) of muscular women with wild beasts.

How many of you imagined the tiger described in the opening anecdote as a muscular cavewoman instead? How many of you thought about the helpless prey as a small, emaciated caveman who heralds from a rival clan? Or a badass chick slaying a (wo)man-eating tiger? Don’t worry if you didn’t initially. You’re sure to think about that now!

When fans of female bodybuilders describe the women they love, two different analogical themes usually emerge: Deific and animalistic.

Werk it, Aleesha Young!
Werk it, Aleesha Young!

The deific nature of female bodybuilders comes out when we talk about muscular women as being “goddesses” or “angels.” Describing a beautiful woman as an angel is quite mainstream. You don’t need to be George McFly to know what I’m talking about (if you don’t get this reference, ask your kids because they’re going to love it). Even the term “goddess” is more or less common among non-muscular women. But I cannot count how many times I’ve come across – or have personally used myself – terms like Muscle Goddess or Muscle Angel as nicknames for women like Alina Popa and Lindsay Mulinazzi.

It makes perfect sense. Female bodybuilders seem almost superhuman. Or in this instance, above human. And what types of creatures are above humanity? The gods, of course. Like Zeus and Athena looking down upon humanity from their ethereal clouds in the sky, female bodybuilders are like Hercules, a human/god hybrid who is technically a deity but has flesh-and-blood and chooses to live among us mortals.

The other theme is animalistic. One of my favorite football (for my non-American readers, I’m not talking about soccer) players of all time is Marshawn Lynch, a former running back for the Seattle Seahawks and Buffalo Bills. His apt nickname is “Beast Mode” because he runs like an unleashed wild beast when he’s plowing through defenders and picking up yardage. Even though Mr. Lynch (who’s being mentioned in this blog post so he doesn’t get fined) is now retired, he still sells merchandise that blatantly uses the Beast Mode brand.

Other athletes who are hardcore and play with reckless abandon are also often compared to beasts. Ronda Rousey, Rob Gronkowski, LeBron James, Manny Pacquiao, and others come to mind. There’s something to be said about an athlete who puts it all on the line, plays with a savage attitude, and doesn’t seem human when he or she is going about their business.

Bodybuilders, both male and female, are a different kind of animal (pun intended). Unlike athletes who compete in football, baseball, basketball, hockey, soccer, boxing, or MMA, bodybuilding is a sport that’s based on subjective judgement, not head-to-head competition. Most of the hard work is done behind the scenes, or more specifically, in the gym and kitchen. Top bodybuilders aren’t dunking over each other, tackling each other, throwing punches at each other, or trying to strike each other out with a 95 mph fastball.

That’s not to say that bodybuilding isn’t a true competitive sport. It’s definitely competitive in every single facet imaginable. But it’s different than other sports. Not better or worse, but different.

However, the beastly comparisons come into play when we think about the physiques of bodybuilding athletes. They look animalistic. It’s hard not to look at a bodybuilder’s hypermuscular body and not compare them to an ox (“strong as an ox”), bull, horse, or lion. So bodybuilders don’t necessarily act like beasts when they’re on the stage, but they indisputably look like beasts.

Male bodybuilders are often compared to beasts. So are female bodybuilders. So what’s the big deal? Here are a few takeaways:

  1. Beasts and traditional roles of women

For as long as human civilization has existed, certain gender stereotypes and roles have also existed. Chief among them is the role of men being the hunters and gatherers and women as caretakers of the family and home. The clear-cut domesticated role for women still persists today in most parts of the world. Who usually takes care of the children? Either their mother or nanny (who is usually a woman). In other words, a maternal authority figure.

Men, on the other hand, are the so-called breadwinners. Men today may not actually hunt for their food, but they are encouraged to work at jobs that pay money intended to help put food on the table. Yes, women do make up a significant portion of the modern workforce, but old habits are often hard to break. Going back several centuries, men hunted for food. Women did not.

This social structure then makes the “woman as beast” motif a rather new phenomenon. Only in cartoons, graphic novels, fetish porn, and pulp literature do you see women portrayed as hunters and gatherers in the jungle (both literally and figuratively). Traditional gender roles make this paradigm not only unusual, but contrary to most of human history.

So associating a female bodybuilder with a wild beast is a definitive break from how we’ve traditionally viewed the role of women in our society. The “man as beast” motif makes sense from an anthropological perspective, but not the “woman as beast” theme. The fact we’ve come to view women in this light is fascinating.

  1. Humans vs. non-humans

An animal is not a human, which is stating the obvious. We don’t expect a human being (not even Usain Bolt) to be able to outrun a cheetah or lift more than a grizzly bear. Humans have certain physical limitations. We can’t fly like an eagle, crawl up a tree like a squirrel or swim underwater for long periods of time like a shark. That’s not in our DNA.

When a human being can (sort of) do things that an animal can, the beast comparisons start to roll in. Mr. Bolt is fast like a cheetah. Andy Bolton is as strong as an ox. Ronda Rousey is as lethal as an anaconda. LeBron James can jump like a kangaroo. We know they can’t literally accomplish feats that a beast can, but sports media (and fans) are often prone to employing hyperbole.

Sporting the shades, Roxanne Edwards is not a woman you want to mess with.
Sporting the shades, Roxanne Edwards is not a woman you want to mess with.

For female bodybuilders, this is even more significant. Because women are biologically not as strong as men, when a woman can achieve a level of muscularity and pure raw strength that surpasses many men, the beast comparisons matter even more. Female bodybuilders are human, but seem almost non-human. They totally destroy whatever notions we hold about the limitations of female physiology.

Male bodybuilders are sort of viewed this way, but it’s exponentially amplified when applied to female bodybuilders. Our perceived stereotypes (and scientifically-backed) beliefs about what women can and cannot physically do shatter when we encounter a muscular woman. She tears down walls that we put around the female species. Like Samson pushing apart the pillars at the Temple of Dagon, female bodybuilders defiantly demolish the box put around them with the ferocious strength of a beast.

  1. The fetishization of beasts

You don’t need to be an expert at Furry culture to know what I’m talking about. If you aren’t familiar with the Furry subculture, Google it and be prepared to feel supremely uncomfortable afterward (don’t say I didn’t warn you!). Yikes.

There exists in our culture the element of fetishizing wild beasts. Additionally, there is something fairly normal to this that has nothing to do with bestiality. Sexuality is a raw element to humanity, something that speaks to our base desires and ability to create future generations.

We like to think of humankind as being intelligent, civilized, cooperative, and advanced. Perhaps the smartest and most resourceful creatures who walk this Earth. It may not seem like it at times (just read the news for five minutes) but for the most part, we humans think of ourselves as superior creatures to wildlife in the jungle, fish in the ocean, and birds in the sky.

However, deep down inside there lurks a desire to reconnect to our animal brothers and sisters. It can get boring and tedious being a human, so why not switch it up for a change and live life (even in a pseudo-sexual manner) as an animal? This is less about anthropomorphism and more about believing that people are really no different than animals.

I’m no expert at zoophilia – and yes, such a term actually exists – but that sort of thing indeed does occur among some folks. Not a huge number of us, but there’s definitely something primal when it comes to thinking about human beings as being wild beasts in need of taming and domesticating.

  1. Beasts are a natural adversary for man

Returning to the hunters-and-gatherers motif, another angle to this discussion is the fact that beasts are also a natural adversary to mankind. Wild animals can be a safety hazard. We treat wild animals as food; just like they treat us in similar fashion. Beasts are not just a common opponent to humans, they often can be an existential threat to humans!

The popularity of the Planet of the Apes and Jurassic Park movies speak to this. People are, for whatever reason, naturally worried that someday their global dominance will come to an end. Endless warfare, environmental disasters, economic collapse, destruction of the civil social order, and other unknown threats ominously loom in the distance. We experience all these things now, but it can get worse, right?

Right. Or not. But fiction rarely gives us a rosy picture of the future. History has taught us that those in power are always paranoid about losing it. That goes for kings, queens, presidents, dictators, mob bosses, war lords, and other people in positions of power. Human beings of all shapes and sizes are the same way. Will super intelligent apes or genetically reconstructed dinosaurs eventually replace us as the dominant species on Earth? It’s doubtful, but one never knows how future events will unfold.

Kim Birtch has gorgeous eyes.
Kim Birtch has gorgeous eyes.

This deep-rooted fear might explain why people have a natural inclination to demonstrate who’s boss. People hunt wild game, eat meat, keep pets, and trap animals in zoos for a variety of reasons, but one hidden reason might be our subconscious desire to remind these beasts who’s in charge. Every time we eat a steak we think to ourselves, “This is what you get for being lower on the food chain!”

Therefore, when men who love female bodybuilders start to compare muscular women to beasts, the same phenomena might be happening. Men, on a subconscious level, view a muscular woman as a threat to his social dominance. She’s bigger and stronger than him, which goes contrary to what thousands of years of biological evolution has brought to us. So in order to retrieve his lost masculinity, he imagines muscular women as being a wild beast in need of domesticating. She’s like a hungry tiger who is threatening to unmercifully consume him and his family. How will he manage to survive?

Perhaps this explains why many guys (not me, but I’m not judging anyone) love to wrestle female bodybuilders. I prefer sensual muscle worship, but I do not speak for everybody. They want to “defeat” her in a battle of physical prowess. While this “victory” is more symbolic than anything else (fantasy wrestling is just that: a fantasy come to life), nevertheless it provides him emotional comfort that he’s still a man and she’s still a woman – regardless of how much muscle she’s packed on her body.

Beasts are either defeated or tamed. A defeated beast is forced to either become food or retreat back into their domains and lick their wounds. A tamed beast can become a subordinate or a partner.

Wow. Who knew female muscle fetishism could be so deeply psychological?

  1. Beasts lack inhibitions and manners

The last point speaks to why many of us love female bodybuilders in the first place: Female bodybuilders are rebels. They defy our expectations for what women are supposed to look like. They defy their biological limitations. They defy their socially-constructed subordinate role to men. They defy our standards of beauty, femininity, and masculinity. They do this whether they intend to or not.

What theoretically separates humans from beasts is that we’re civil and rational while beasts are uncivil and primitive. We live in air conditioned homes. They live in caves and makeshift nests. We can do algebra, calculus, perform symphonies, and write poetry. They can’t conceive of such activities. We can cooperate for mutual benefit. Beasts are forced to kill each other for the sake of survival.

But whenever you read about terrorism, war, political corruption, and crime in the news, it’s hard to say with a straight face that humans are civilized. Who are we to talk? We can be just as violent as a pack of wolves attacking a lone deer.

Beasts, however, lack inhibitions and manners. They are not expected to follow such protocols of rational behavior. A hungry tiger can slaughter a group of defenseless rabbits and none of us will blink an eye. A deranged psychopath can shoot up a public place like a school or a shopping mall and we (justifiably) look down upon that person with shame, disgust, and repulsion. People must behave in a certain way. Animals are, for whatever reason, not expected to do the same.

Beautiful legs on Autumn Raby.
Beautiful legs on Autumn Raby.

In vicarious fashion, maybe we envy the beast for not having to follow these rules. We are jealous that female bodybuilders have the self-confidence to pursue their dreams despite what society says – all the while we don’t possess even a fraction of those convictions. We love muscular women because not only are they physically beautiful, but because they’ve given themselves permission to do whatever they want to with their lives regardless of the consequences. That’s pretty cool. How many of us are willing and able to do the same thing?

We love female bodybuilders because they aren’t dainty flowers who feel constricted by social mores. They defiantly break those molds and create their own rules. They feel free to grunt, bust their tail, and sweat buckets at the gym without a second thought to what anybody else thinks. Their lack of “manners” is liberating. We get a sense of vicarious pleasure from watching this unfold.

I apologize if this post took an unexpected dark turn, but discussions about human sexuality isn’t always a bed of roses. Sometimes it is necessary to travel into the Dark Unknown in order to shine a light on Greater Understanding.

To summarize, there’s something undeniably animalistic about female bodybuilders. From the perspective of straight men who love female muscle, we fantasize about muscular women being wild beasts because it speaks to how we view our place in the global order. Are we at the top? Or at the bottom? Do we have power? Or are we powerless? Is our masculinity celebrated or squashed? Are men the stronger sex or are we secretly afraid that not all of us are able to carry this mantle?

Like the tiger hiding in the sagebrush, these questions are lurking in our minds. And like the tiger’s helpless prey, answering these questions may eventually lead us to an unpleasant confrontation.