A philosophy of desire (NSFW)

A philosophy of desire (NSFW)

We all know the things we want. And we all know the things we want that we don’t tell anyone else about. We lust, we hide, we lie, we cheat, we need. We desire. It’s inherently, truthfully, human. So, what is desire? According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, it’s to want or wish for (something) : to feel desire for (something) to want to have sex with (someone) to express a wish for (something) Since Antiquity we have tried to explain our wants and needs, and why they hold so much sway over our actions. Desire is what drives all of us, and, at least according to Hobbes, is the reason we as humans do anything. Or, even simpler, desire is as Elizabeth Anscombe says, “The primitive sign of wanting is trying to get.” Pleasure-based desire The most ubiquitous, and perhaps the most powerful, are pleasure-based desires. Why spouses cheat on spouses, why people break laws to get what they want, why Fifty Shades of Grey (pictured right) makes housewives blush en route to $85 million on its opening weekend and $571 million worldwide. A simple explanation for why this happens comes from Denise Cummins Ph.D. in Psychology Today: “Part of it, of course, is simple curiosity in bondage and sadomasochistic sexuality (BDSM). That part is simple to explain: The pain and fear that comes with sadomasochistic sex causes the brain to shunt blood flow away from its executive “decision-making” areas (frontal cortex), which results in an altered state of consciousness in both the giver and the receiver. Like autoerotic asphyxiation or cocaine, experiencing fear and pain can heighten sexual gratification, but at some cost.” But, if you look at the photo, it could...
Restaurant run: Low light for food, fantastic, and categorical phantasm

Restaurant run: Low light for food, fantastic, and categorical phantasm

We are at the restaurant after the gala. It’s our restaurant. The lighting is low, except for the menu cards lit with lights almost neon, garish and hanging over the service station like the dashboard of the old car your mother used to drive. We speak in your voice; the way you speak; the way you talk to the one you love simply, the one with whom you share a table, a meal, a drink while casting sidelong glances at other tables to see what they’ve ordered, if they are enjoying it, are they enjoying themselves? Where will they go tonight after the throbbing streets subside? The server stands table side and is a short man with dark hair slicked back long behind his ears. He glistens in the changing light, a layer of sweat on his forehead. Candles on the tabletop, dripping wax. He pours wine with the nose of someone who doesn’t like to be wrong. Who would never be wrong, no, not in the presence of such treasured and esteemed patronage. “The autumn composition, miss,” he says with a voice that recalls Rome and other empires long gone, “Beneath a magret de canard. The season is fantastic and it will be the chef’s pleasure to prepare it medium rare.” “For you, sir,” he says, “the squab.” But we smell the richness of the glace de viande and Soubise, roasted pear and blueberries, vinegar, wine the way kings and conquerors looked down on their meals of great conquest. Like the skin of pure and perfect women waiting in sheets and velvet, and the carved statues of great...