It just keeps raining and raining here in New York tonight. There is an awning just outside my apartment window and the sound of every drop is magnified on its surface. Makes the rainfall sound more pointed and relentless to me. I don’t mind light rain, but heavy rain tends to keep me inside and I feel a bit of cabin fever.
I’ve been busy writing my newsletters for porn websites as well as my product review column about everything from horror movie documentaries to sex toys. I’ve also done a couple of good columns in my weekly “Notes of a Rebel Subbie” series for a very kinky site called Domme Dose. It’s definitely “for adults only” but if you’re interested in various aspects of the erotic practice of female domination, especially what is known as “financial domination” or “findom” (where subs “tribute” their dominatrixes with gifts and money) check out the link here.
To relax my mind on the weekends, I like to go to flea markets sometimes, and last weekend I was making my usual rounds when my attention was drawn to this colorful tapestry:
Maybe I should check out REAL bellydancing again sometime soon...
It took me a moment to realize that this fun, if somewhat cheesy item, was another copy of the same tapestry that I had bought on 14th Street and hung in my office at Charles “Chip” Goodman’s publishing company in the mid to late 1980s when I was the editor of magazines such as Stag, Cheeks, and Girls Over 40.
As you can see, Stag was a venerable men's mag title...
This title was my brainchild, and I edited it lovingly from 1988 until 2005.
When I started doing this mag in the late 80s, the term "cougar" had not yet been coined.
I had a nice comfortable private office crammed with books, magazines, and besides that tapestry, pinup art on the walls. There was one particular poster by the late Dave “Rocketeer” Stevens of a beautiful blonde that I remember fondly; I wonder if I still have it somewhere in my archives. This was my personal headquarters in the corporate hive where I edited my writers’ stories and articles and erotic letters, hammered out the “girl copy” for the pictorials (the seductive prose inducing the readers to take out their weiners, if the pictures hadn’t already accomplished that), and where I edited the sets of 35mm slides that would make up the layouts of the models in the magazine, as well as provide the covers for each issue.
I used to sit with that bellydancer tapestry opposite me as I smoked cigarettes (not that many, as I never smoked heavily, and all I did was puff, not inhale), drank coffee, had a chocolate chip muffin for breakfast, and threw around ideas over the phone or in person with my various talented contributors who provided some very entertaining copy. (I’ll do another post sometime just about my writers, so that’s why I’m not giving their names now.) Occasionally a potential model would come into the office and I would take a few test Polaroids of her, often posing her in front of that bellydancing tapestry.
Sometimes I listened to Big Band music when I was writing in the office, and a younger colleague said when he heard the number “Goodbye” by Benny Goodman he thought of me sitting in that office working. I used to also sometimes wear vintage clothes in those days, double-breasted jackets and topcoats from the 50s, and I could dangle my cigarette under a fedora with the best of ’em.
Like any hard-boiled scribe, I kept a bottle of Jameson in my desk drawer for spiritual emergencies. Not that I’m a big drinker, although I do like my shots of that fine Irish whiskey.
Can’t believe that ended almost twenty-three years ago, when I became a freelancer. Seems like, you know, yesterday. Almost…
Well, back in the present day now, the rain seems to have slowed down a bit outside my window. Maybe I’ll go out for a little walk…not too far from my house is the building where I used to work for Goodman. These days, the building is right next to the only Hooters in Manhattan. Too bad it wasn’t there in the 80s…I’m sure it would have been a regular spot for our expense-paid lunches with porn scribes, porn photographers, and the occasional porn stars!
Come to think of it, I got to enjoy a bit of the Mad Men type of work life, even if in a more modest way.
I got the scans of the magazine covers from a site called OldMags.com, which sells a huge selection of vintage adult magazines, as well as other kinds of publications. They even have pages which feature issues of Fox, when it was put out by Montcalm Publishing, for which I did many porn star interviews and video reviews in the 1990s. Those pages can be found here. I don’t work for Old Mags, but I’m just acknowledging the source of the cover photos above. I obviously took the snapshot of the bellydancing tapestry myself.