Reports are the Japanese are hard at work inventing new orientation letters for export.
Reports are the Japanese are hard at work inventing new orientation letters for export.

I admit it. I am afraid of the sort of person who boasts of being a card-carrying LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM member. I would not want to be in a room alone with one of them, nor would I leave any under thirty in their care unsupervised.

It’s not that I’m afraid of my person or my soul, you understand, but I would positively dread having to listen to a LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM enthusiast chatter away on “gender theory”, perhaps those most stultifying subject known to mankind—excepting speeches by Nancy Pelosi, of course. Can you even bring yourself to imagine being lectured on, say, “Feminist solidarity after queer theory: the case of transgender“?

It is by now clear that feminist politics needs to speak to (and be spoken by) many more subjects than women and men, heterosexual women and lesbians. How—in theory and in practice—should feminism engage bisexuality, intersexuality, transsexuality, transgender, and other emergent identities that reconfigure both conventional and conventionally feminist understandings of sex, gender, and sexuality?

Maybe that passage would have been just tolerable as a way to pass the time before the warden came to get you for your final walk, except for a footnote appended onto “transsexuality”:

There is some political debate about whether “transexual” is a spelling preferable to “transsexual.” Some critics have suggested that an integrated rather than a compound noun avoids the problematic implication that transsexuals “cross sexes.”

Incidentally, that’s exactly the sort of thing many predicted we could get as a substitute for scholarship when universities went on their female-hiring binges to fulfill their quota of that sex (or is it ssex?) and so avoid charges of femaleaphobia.

All this was on my mind when I contemplated the new LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM theme house at Wesleyan university, a real place. Wesleyan, I said, named after John “Method in his Madness” Wesley. Would he be proud? Boy.

Open House is a safe space for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Queer, Questioning, Flexual, Asexual, Genderf**k, Polyamourous, Bondage/Disciple, Dominance/Submission, Sadism/Masochism (LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM) communities and for people of sexually or gender dissident communities. The goals of Open House include generating interest in a celebration of queer life from the social to the political to the academic. Open House works to create a Wesleyan community that appreciates the variety and vivacity of gender, sex and sexuality. [Edited]

Flexual? Must have something to do with those sweat-soaked cushy yoga napkins carried everywhere by women wearing ridiculously colored stretchy pants. Fashion hint: Ladies, no, you do not look good.

And, say, are pedophiles and woofies considered members of “gender dissident communities”? I’d guess yes.

That’s a better question than it first appears. Are there any behaviors that are still considered perversions? You can’t go by us uneducated civilians who still suffer from our various phobias, but do any academically trained gender theorists admit the existence of perversion? I don’t know the answer. Maybe one of you could wander into the Wesleyan LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM safe house and ask one of its habitues about that subject. If this person grows angry with you, punch this person in the nose. If this person complains, tell her/him/hyr/em/it you’re a sadist and got sexual satisfaction out of it. This person will have to let you go.

Now for the real reason for this column. To boast and brag. A year ago a contest to guess the next “orientation” letter was launched here.

What will be the next letter? Until recently, smart money was a second B for “bestiality.” Letters do not have to be unique; but if they did, then Z for “zoophile”, their preferred term. In Sweden and Germany, “Here, boy!” carries a different connotation than Stateside. But bestiality, while legal in those countries, is under fire from animal “rights” activists who are concerned about emotional scars on the Fluffies of the world.

I later modified that Z to W for woofies, which is a politer label.

None of us guessed the exact string used by Wesleyan—who could have?—but that there would be an agglomeration to LBGT most of us correctly forecasted. And since our forecast was right, it is good evidence that the theory which drove the forecast is true. That theory is the loss of essence, about which more another time.

We end with a quiz. Without peeking above, what were the exact letters and order of those letters in the new Wesleyan house of non-judgmentalism? Bet you don’t remember!


  1. Katie

    The only question this raises is the ordering of the letters and what this signals. Some letters appear before others, perhaps suggesting their importance–that is, do L’s have more social currency than D’s or M’s? I object to the judgmental nature of this term, in that some letters are perceived to be better than others simply because of their placement.

  2. People love to study things that interest them, and for many, themselves are the most interesting things there are. I would find analyzing my own sexuality as interesting as a geological survey of my navel, but to each their own… very, very much so.

    So, whatever. At least they’re happy with it. If you’re going to be a narcissist its probably best you stay away from subjects that don’t involve you personally. Otherwise, we’ll have LGBT Calculus, LGBT International Trade studies, LGBT civil engineering, etc… Though the civil engineering could be really funny… Is it a bridge? Is it a road? Is it okay to ask?


  3. Oosh, I think the LGBT kids would still somehow be a less annoying than the YAF kids. Wrap yourself in a dress or a flag, either way it’s jut a wrapping.


  4. Gary

    Two questions come to mind: 1. When will civil war break out between competing AlphabetSoup factions regarding the correct inclusion and/or order of letters? 2. Will the list become so atomized that someone eventually aggregates it into a standard set?

  5. I’m reminded of Justice Potter Stewart. When it comes to defining your gender, I know stupid when I see it.

  6. Milton Hathaway

    JMJ: YAF kids? Never heard of ’em. Let’s see . . .'s_Foundation

    I’m in process of re-org’ing my donatees, with an eye toward shifting emphasis to planting seeds for the future; this group looks like an excellent candidate. (I’ve decided that my generation, and older, are hopelessly comfortably destructively ignorant, and the only hope for the future comes after we all die off.)

    Thanks for the tip. TLwimw, I guess.

  7. Briggs


    An unnamed Source emailed and said, “I’m beginning to think that Jersey McJones is paid to comment on your blog.”

    That so?

  8. Paid in corn chips!

    Back in my career days, I was paid not to talk.

    The reason people are cynical about your position on global warming (or whatever you want to call it) is that it seems like you are going out of your way to make an argument about something that only has a downside for very certain and particular interests, and those interests are connected to almost everyone who makes your argument, while all told, the opposite position would be best for the vast majority of humanity and all the flora and fauna of the Earth. Meanwhile, you appear to be a Catholic, and rather devout, and yet see nothing untoward about this. Do you understand this? I don’t see how an otherwise very rational person wouldn’t at least see why that perception is.


  9. I always assumed “Jersey McJones” was merely a rhetorical device, in the spirit Galileo invented Simplicio. His commentary is suspiciously too perfect (as the uneducated pompous buffoon), to make other explanations barely plausible.

  10. Johan

    JMJ, are you omniscient? Because it certainly sounds that way.

  11. ad

    So JMJ, it doesn’t matter if the AGW folks are wrong, as long as they are wrong for the right reason no-one should query the science and try to improve it?

    If I went back to college i’d join the DOM community.

  12. ad

    That’s DOM as in Dirty Old Man. Though maybe I could give the other meaning a try, just to get in the spirit of things.

  13. DAV


    Well it IS pretty scary when you put it that way. Wasn’t that one of the movies on Chiller Theater — The Attack of the Many Lettered Abbreviation?

  14. Yes JMJ’s argument is that a scientific question is to be decided based on assumed moral consequences. Not an argument as such, but an appeal to feelings. I can’t see how anyone would be paid to write stupid things, especially since people sitting on either side of the fence would mutually agree such an argument is stupid–and separate from the merits of any rational position.

    Regarding sexual identity politics: I don’t see how it is the business of the state, or even academia, to intervene or not intervene. People may do what they wish so long as the activities are consensual and no harm is done to those involved. However, wearing one’s sexual predilections as a badge of honour is patiently silly. A sexual attraction or fetish is not superior or inferior to any other. Female sexual attraction is not superior to or less superior to male sexual attraction. It just is. Protesting pigeon holing by creating an infinite series of pigeon holes, is oxymoronic. Academics might better spend their time working on ways to increase the self esteem of their students. Preferably not by dispensing with labels by creating labels. If other people do not find your sexual predilections tantalizing, it’s best to acquire the maturity not to care. Which is superior to obsessing over ways one might convert others to your likes or dislikes.

  15. max


    I cannot get the end but the portion of the acronym I can decipher is obviously:

    together to
    questioning the

  16. max

    aargh, forgot the next three:

    granted by

    the DS is beyond me but I am fairly certain the terminal M is media

  17. DAV

    DS is beyond me but I am fairly certain the terminal M is media

    Democratic and Socialist

  18. DAV

    Perhaps apropos:
    Michigan gym reportedly bans woman over gender identity complaint

    “Planet Fitness is committed to creating a non-intimidating, welcoming environment for our members,” the statement read. “Our gender identity non-discrimination policy states that members and guests may use all gym facilities based on their sincere self-reported gender identity.

    I wonder how they determine the sincere part or is it obvious someone self-reporting to identify as a woman couldn’t possibly be lying?

  19. LOL! Hey, Nitschke, stupid is not understanding what I said, something you have in common with “ad” (sic? ;).

    If we can utilize energy more efficiently, independently and together, and cleaner, why not? We’re exporting LNG while burning coal – and if you think coal isn’t filthy then you’re an idiot. We’re fussing over a pipeline from one of the filthiest sources on the planet, to export it right out again – The Canada’s Bung-Hole Pipeline aka Keystone. Oil money is apparently one of the most corrupting forces of human nature everywhere you look. And in Iowa every candidate for President must swear an allegiance to corn fuel, the Meth to oil’s Cocaine.

    The status quo seems like it will get very tenuous in the future. Other than for a few interests, I see pretty much all upside for the country if we pursue a policy of retooling the energy infrastructure, and less pollution is certainly one of those upsides, but only one of many. And it certainly doesn’t mean all one thing or another, in case you decide to bring this out on the schoolyard.


  20. One definition of troll is to continually post off topic about one’s personal obsessions.

  21. Nick

    Posts like this make me upset about the lack of commitment to a podcast because this sort of wit works so well in audio. I would personally fund this (slash force you to do it) if I had the means. One day.

    On another note, “Meanwhile, you appear to be a Catholic, and rather devout, and yet see nothing untoward about this. Do you understand this? I don’t see how an otherwise very rational person wouldn’t at least see why that perception is.”

    Translation: I would love to look at your arguments, but I first must look at your hominem.


    Translation: facts and arguments are futile – we all know that ideological allegiances and motivations undergird all science.


    Translation: being omnipotent and omniscient, I have all knowledge of all causes and effects and even if global warming itself weren’t true, all of the causes and effects that it entails are only good and the things it is against are only bad. While I am very sure about the causes and effects that come from supposing the truth of global warming, I guess I can say I’m not totally sure about global warming itself.

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