David is 18, at a friend's house. They and the friend's older sister have come back from skiing. After the sister has changed and left the house, they go through her room in search of her diary. When his friend is too engrossed in the diary to notice, David wanders off and discovers her underwear in the closet. He picks up the underwear and smells it. He's amazed. Nothing he has smelled has ever struck him like this. His cock gets so hard it hurts. It speaks of something vague that contradicts everything about women he has ever known.
He hides the underwear, takes it to bed with him, and sleeps with his nose in it, wearing out the funny smell.
"You asshole," says his friend when he sees the panties. "Get the fuck out of here."
*His First Whiff of the Real Thing*
David is 19, curious, and has graduated from National Geographic and the Penney's catalog to dirty magazines. He has not surfed the Internet yet. On his 19th birthday, with money in his pocket and a trembling hand, he pulls a dirty magazine from a bookstore shelf and buys it. He races home, pulls out his penis, and flogs it silly. The women he sees are thin, busty, zit-free and without dimples; they become the center of his world.
David strikes up a romance with co-worker Jenna at BurgerQuik. They cast eyes at each other across the kitchen. She blows him a kiss. He wags his tongue at her. She makes a wanking motion. At night, they neck in the park behind BurgerQuik.
After his first year of college, David is back slinging burgers at his culinary alma mater. So is Jenna. She has an apartment. She lets him inside the apartment, then inside her.
David is amazed. He especially loves going down on Jenna, and how her thick hair seems to intensify her female odor. The smell flies in the face of everything her makeup and fancy hairstyle suggest about her. It's earthy, dirty, worldly, and yet unworldly. She likes that he enjoys her crotch so much.
For his part, he makes damn sure she doesn't see his stacks of girlie magazines when she visits his house.
David acts on something he read once, about how pussy is a wonderful place to fall asleep. He naps with his nose in her font of life. And he wakes up with a high he has never felt before. He wants this. Needs this. It is the spring of his sexuality.
Later in the summer, the bush is gone. Sheared off with a razor and powdered. "Hmm," he says. "Kinky." And he goes muff diving. But there's not much smell, and no high. He resorts to going down on Jenna in the mornings, when her smell is stronger. He likes it when she absentmindedly doesn't wash down there for two days.
Then she introduces flavored candy as a way to "cover up the smell." He doesn't care for candy pussy, and he begs her to go a few days without washing, to cultivate the smell that is otherwise missing. She says no. He eventually forgets about the special high he got that one night in spring. But eating pussy has lost its magic. David returns to his magazines.
At 20 and at a different college, David realizes he is increasingly attracted to smooth-skinned, small-waisted, big-busted, vapid girls. Yet he is disillusioned, but doesn't know why. After reading an editorial on the evils of pornography in the college newspaper, he realizes he is an addict and becomes worried.
One of the responses to the editorial was, "At least you learned from your past. I'm 47 and I keep repeating it. I just got back from yet another trip to the dirty bookstore, where I blew another 200 bucks on the same old crap I already have piled up in my closet. Why don't I learn?"
David doesn't want to keep repeating his past, as short as it has been. He doesn't want to marry the kind of woman he fantasizes about.
David throws out all his 87 porn mags, reluctantly, after gazing at them sadly for one last time. It is like a funeral for him. But he does it with a sense of hope--and begins reading radical feminist philosophy. He likes the sense of certainty that it offers. He becomes ashamed of his male gaze, his lookism, his phallocentrism, his role as a gender oppressor, the notion that he has somehow raped all the women in history by virtue of being male. He spends his time deliberately not looking at women or thinking about what they look like naked. He smiles inside, feeling liberated. But in the dark confines of his bed and his mind, his fantasies become more prurient than ever. Determined, he reads even more feminist philosophy. He graduates to the lesbian separatists. David wishes he were a lesbian. With their absence of phallocentrism, he reasons, they must have the key to whatever he is looking for in a woman.
Damn my cock, he thinks.
In his spare time, he classifies all the cunts he has smelled. He remembers them all distinctly. Ashley's was sharp and strong, even after a shower. Jenna's was sweet and kinky. Michelle's was just plain nasty – she smoked a lot and ate lots of pork. Leia's was mild and kinky and could smell good after two days without washing. Every time he sees a woman he likes, he finds himself wondering what she smells like down there. Am I normal? he wonders.
The more radical feminist philosophy he reads, the more he finds himself masturbating and fantasizing. One day, while browsing a used bookstore run by radical leftists, he sees pictures of naked women who haven't shaved any of their body hair. He hides behind the book racks so no radical feminists will see him looking for pictures of naked women. He sees thick tufts underneath the arms, lush triangles between the legs, hairstyles that went out of fashion twenty years earlier, wide hips, and even one pair of buttocks with a lot of cellulite. And the women look quite satisfied.
David doesn't find landing strips, pubic triangles, or little dots of hair surrounded by an ocean of bare skin exciting. He doesn't really like the completely shaved vulvas either. He wants to see the real thing. He realizes he really likes pubic hair. Thick, nested, and parked between big, happy thighs.
*The Modern Feminist*
David attends radical feminist gatherings in college. He sits on the outsides of the meetings. Men must be limited to a support function, he reasons. He agrees with everything he hears about the male gaze in pornography, about how most women would be better off as lesbians. His mind begins to wander at the meetings, wondering instead what all these women would look like naked.
He meets a particularly nice one who has been eyeing him for many meetings. One day she approaches him and they talk. And talk. And talk. And talk at the nearby coffeehouse. And talk the next day at the same coffeehouse. And find themselves at her apartment on their way to her bedroom, wading through Ani DiFranco CDs, some low-budget lesbian porn, and a variety of books by feminist authors whom David knows contradict each other.
The lesbian porno catches his eye. "Maybe I can have my cake and eat it, too," he thinks, aware of the pun. He resolves to peruse it later.
When she pulls down her pants on their first night together, he sees not the full, liberated radical feminist bush he was expecting, but a thin strip of hair over her pink lips. He doesn't see the tufts of armpit hair he'd been hoping for. He is unable to smell the scent he has been hoping for: there isn't enough hair to convey it. David is confused.
"It's the attitude that we don't have to be bounded by society's ideas of what is feminine," she explains to him.
"But isn't that hair feminine? Isn't it part of the package?"
"Yes, but it's all about choice. Something as simple as choosing whether or not to shave is an exercise in choice. Also, it helps to control odor, especially in the summer."
David isn't satisfied by that argument. His dining experience that night is uneventful. The next morning, they peruse the lesbian literature.
"It's no different from the crap I used to look at," he says, dejected. "Where is the bias-free depiction of female sexual beauty? Look at this: pubic mohawks all over again. I feel like I'm looking through the latest issue of 'Barely Legal Snatch.'"
"At least they're kissing on the mouth," she says.
"Yes. You've got me there. They're kissing on the mouth. You don't see a lot of that in regular porn. But tell me – where's the thigh-humping?"
David soon finds himself smelling panties in the apartment's laundry room when he can. Even the freshly washed ones have a faint trace of woman.
*What a Guy Wants*
David discovers the Internet. And Internet porn. Lots of it. Lots of bad Internet porn. But then he discovers the "Search" key. He types in "natural women," "hairy women," "unshaved," "hairy armpits," etc., and finds pictures that amaze him. He creates a log of dozens of search terms that he checks every week. He develops a very large folder of pictures. He prints out a book of them. He is happy for a time, masturbating all alone in his apartment with pictures of natural goddesses in the woods raising their arms in joyous embrace of the earth and damning their razor culture.
But he wants a flesh and blood woman. Photographs can't hug him back.
*The Lean Years*
David does not encounter any women who meet his standards. He tries to admit his selfishness and accepts women who are great in every other way. But the physical spark is gone. Deep down, he is a caring, open man, but he cannot get beyond what he sees as a lie foisted upon the feminine body by the media, by ludicrous sexual standards, by his own sex, by his expectations, and by women themselves.
He becomes disillusioned with women. For the next two years, he hardly dates, and he rarely has sex. He encounters his own uncooperative dick and sighs that he is becoming an earlier casualty of the modern age. He devotes himself to work. When not at work, he is pale and unhappy. He watches the news a lot. When he gets a new computer, he doesn't bother to import the bookmarks of his old favorite hairy women sites. This time, he bookmarks news sites and forestry pages.
One night, while at a going-away party at work, he sleeps with the going-away girl. They have been flirting for months, and he half-heartedly makes his move. His penis, however, is just as half-hearted. Despite her stand that it is okay that he just rub himself on her, David gives up and goes home.
"If there's anything a woman can't stand, it's a man who defines himself by his dick," she tells him as he tucks his shriveled manhood into his jeans.
"Sorry," he admits.
*The Summer of Bare Skin*
A year later, David attends a nude beach an hour away. He has no problem pulling down his trunks in front of women, and he no longer worries about unwelcome erections because he never gets them anymore. He doesn't get turned on very often anymore, and he doesn't much care. He is content to admire women without getting aroused. He pulls out a book, puts on sunglasses, lowers his head, and reads while a few dozen naked women walk, sit, and otherwise exist close to him and his thoroughly limp dick.
Finally, he decides to look at them. He looks over his shades at all the women on the beach.
Naked women, he thinks. All kinds of them. Walking in front of him. Female flesh--black, white, small, large, tanned, pale, smooth, wrinkled, tall, short. Some standing still, talking and drinking soda, and others playing volleyball, their pubic mounds heaving slightly as they jump up to hit the ball. He begins to marvel at the variety of faces, hairstyles, smiles, bright eyes, thighs, stomachs, arms, breasts – even feet – in front of him (and the anus he briefly spotted as a woman bent over).
Many of them have shaved their pubic hair into little triangles, strips, or nothing at all. Even some of the men have. By his third trip to the beach, David realizes he has stumbled across a meat market. Great, he sighs. Not the "judgment-free haven where the true person is laid bare," as a nudist Web site advertised about the clothing-free lifestyle. He sees primping, preening, and posing. But it doesn't bother him or his limp penis any more.
*One Day He Sees Her*
Over near the side of the beach, about fifty feet away. He has never seen her before, and she is inconspicuous, yet she jumps out at him. She has wide hips that move dramatically as she walks. They taper sharply to a narrow waist. Her body is an anomaly to David. He has never seen such a contrast between waist and hips. But he is amazed at the way she walks. She walks slowly, almost deliberately and contemplatively, and each movement seems to him like an exercise in losing oneself in one's walk. She is obviously taking her time, not going anywhere, not affecting a particular look or style.
He is watching her naked ass as it does its little dance on the sand. David looks around the beach – no one seems to be watching her. She is walking languidly down the beach, the tiny waves licking up her ankles.
Then she turns around. David watches as she walks up the beach toward him. Her breasts – 32B's, David estimates – don't move as she walks. He immediately notices a huge black bush that spills over the traditional female nesting area and climbs up to the navel and onto the thighs. His body begins to tingle. He thanks God he has 20/20 vision. From its place between his body and the sand, his penis begins to grow. And grow. And grow. He quickly reaches down and scoops out a handful of sand to give him more room to grow.
Then she raises her arms up to straighten her hair. David dies for a second, then wakes again. He sees big forests of thick, black hair under her arms. He is now so hard that he must adjust his body a little to the side to give his cock more room. David has never been so turned on. The thirty or so people at the beach, most preened so nicely, don't seem to faze the woman. She doesn't seem to faze them, either.
For the next hour, he watches her from behind the safety of his sunglasses. His cock stays hard for almost an entire hour. Other bodies move past him, tanned, shaved, muscular, stylish. He does not notice them.
The next Saturday, David is at the beach again. He takes a spot where he had seen the young woman sit before. He scoops out some sand underneath his crotch area, just in case. He opens up a book and reads, ignoring the many people who walk past him in all their naked glory. He waits. And waits. And waits. And grows sleepy. And drifts off to sleep. And inadvertently turns over and starts snoring.
He dreams of the hairy, big-hipped woman. She is walking toward him in all her glory. His eyes open wide as he sees her slow, confident walk carry her his way. She is leaning over him, the hair on her head hanging down and blotting out the sun. Her dark eyes gaze into his. Then she is straddling his face. An overpowering aroma hits his nose before she is on top of him. Once her thick jungle hits his face, he writhes uncontrollably, so intoxicated is he from that rich perfume.
David wakes suddenly, feeling something in his groin. He looks to see a large, thin, plastic ring around his apparently erect cock. All around him, people are giggling. "Dead ringer!" he hears a woman say. David sits up and looks at the ring. He reaches down and removes it, looking at the thing.
"It's a Frisbee," the woman says. "A ring Frisbee."
"I see," he says without looking at her. "You have good aim." He examines it, trying to imagine how it flies in the air. Still, without looking at her, he beckons her forward.
To his horror, it is the woman. THE woman. THAT woman. Close up. In person. But covered with a swimsuit.
"Umm," he croaks, "is this ring yours, or are you just happy to see me?"
"I should be asking YOU that," she laughs. "I just saw you lying there at full staff, and I thought, how many opportunities like this will I have again? I didn't mean to offend you."
David struggles to speak. Then he smiles at her. "I'll let it slide just this once."
"Mind if I sit here? This is my usual spot."
David nods his permission. His penis is still quite erect, and he places the Frisbee ring over it again. They both laugh. He studies the woman. She is about 25, like he, and as they talk about the book he is reading, he steals glances at the thick, black armpit hair that is on display as she reaches up to pin her hair. She sees him looking. She sees him looking at her hairy thighs, and her very hairy calves and feet.
Their conversation livens and moves to other topics. David's penis eventually calms down. She looks at that part of him and jokes, "Finally. I thought I was going to have to splash a bucket of cold water on it."
"My name is David," he tells her. He hands her Frisbee back to her.
"Chantelle," she tells him, and they shake hands. "If I'm not mistaken, David, I think you're a bit enamored of my body hair."
David sighs. "Yes, yes I am. I don't mean to sound like an obsessed pervert, but it's such a breath of fresh air. It's a burst of reality. It brings back memories."
Chantelle describes her lengthy battle with hair, what it has meant to her, and the freedom she felt when she first packed up her razors, her creams, and her shavers and tossed them out. She is an interior designer by trade, is financially secure, drives a Chevy, has not been laid in three years, has a bronze statue of a football in her living room, and is everything he did not expect her to be.
She invites him to play Frisbee. Before doing so, she strips off her bathing suit. David looks away out of modesty. Chantelle notices this.
They meet at the nude beach four more times before David asks his new friend out. For a whole evening they talk and talk and talk. Chantelle presses him on many issues. He responds quickly and without hesitation. She has no time for shyness. He presses back on her. She answers his questions with animated expressions and hand movements. They are more naked to each other than they were on the beach.
David feels at ease with this form of nudity. He forgets about the thick hair under her arms and between her legs. At the end of the night, he offers her a kiss, which she accepts. They do not fuck. Instead, they part ways.
David does not masturbate when he gets home. The tension burns in his cock, in his chest, even in his jaw. But for the first time, he is content to just feel it. He likes the pain. David falls asleep feeling happy for the first time in years. On the other end of town, Chantelle ends her evening in largely the same way.
*Happily Ever After*
It is Indian summer in late September. After three months of dating and seeing each other naked on the beach (and only on the beach), they still have not gotten past first base. David is okay with that. So is Chantelle. The crowd at the beach is down to only ten people. As he and his girlfriend lie facing each other and sip soda from a bottle, he is unaware what any of the other people even look like.
By 4 o'clock, they are the only ones remaining on the beach. David invites Chantelle to walk up and down the shore with him. He splashes water onto her. He chases her. She chases him. She pinches him on his ass. He pinches hers. Then, without warning, they embrace. The dance has begun.
For the first time in years, he is inside a woman. For the first time in years, she feels a man, not her own fingers, inside her.
He puts his nose to her thick nest. He can feel the fur on her thighs rub his cheek. Immediately, he is hit by waves of rich feminine smell, like the ocean, but seasoned and pungified by the hot sun. He hasn't inhaled this kind of aroma in years. For ages, eons it seems, his face is glued to that earthy ravine, drinking in its salt, its ocean, its heat, its primordial reek.