Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A good night for sex

Last night the Green Street Arts Center hosted a reading by the editor, and three authors, who have contributed to Dirty Words, A Literary Encyclopedia of Sex.

While the topic is such, that one would surely expect a crowd of curious listeners, the Middletown audience only numbered a couple of dozen. To be fair, it was a Tuesday night (a lovely summer Tuesday night at that); this was the second central-Connecticut reading and there was a joint meeting of the Redevelopment Committee and the Public Safety Committee on the other end of Main Street. And perhaps Middletown, with most of the student population of Wesleyan absent, is a bit more prudish than I might have guessed.

There was no need to be abashed, because while the language was sometimes blunt, the readings were sensitive, insightful, and often hilarious. Sam Brumbaugh, a novelist from Northampton, and coincidentally the producer of Be Here To Love Me, the great documentary about singer-songwriter Townes van Zandt, read his entry about fobbing - the act of weeping during sex. Hartford-born writer Mary-Ann Tirone Smith, gave a hilarious recitation about her first hum job. Dan Pope, a novelist now living in West Hartford, revealed a cross-border journey that ended in coitus interuptus. And editor and author Ellen Sussman revealed the truth about her brother in an essay on commitment, or lack thereof.

If you have any questions about the terms I mentioned above, you may want to get a copy of Dirty Words, and, shall I say, bone up.

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