Thrashing heads

Sort of related to our “Things That Only Happen in Romances” entry: What is up with all the heads thrashing in ecstasy in romance novels?

I was feeling kind of blah during the weekend, so I picked up a few old favorites and skimmed through my favorite bits, many of which involved the nookery. And the women? All of their heads, they thrashed. Often fitfully, and right before orgasm, or as the heroes initiated something shocking to their sensibilities, like having their tongues say “Hello, luv!” to their clitorises (clitores?).

The men grunt, groan, shudder and grind during le petit mort, but ne’er do they thrash. Is head-thrashing a girly thing to do?

I have to admit, I’ve had my fair share of really, really hot nookifying in my time, but never have I thrashed my head. Because dude, OW, WHIPLASH. But maybe I’m missing out on something?

I haven’t seen porn stars do it too often, either, but then I haven’t watched much porn—anyone want to weigh in on the state of head thrashery in hardcore flicks?

The only time I thrashed my head with any regularity was when I was 16 and really, really into Guns n Roses and Nirvana. Oh, also that one time when I was 14 and my brother was driving me back from school, and our Toyota got sideswiped by a Proton Saga. Head-thrashing was brief, but suitably vigorous and snappy.

Why can’t these romance novel heroines act like more conventional slutbags, and be satisfied with arching their backs and making keening sounds of desperate desire? All that vigorous head movement makes me think of this girl, who, God knows, did a whole lot of thrashing.


Random Musings

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  1. 1
    MM says:

    Is head banging classified under thrashing? Because there have been times when some inconsiderate bast*** has moved the wall/ headboard/metal railings 3 or 4 inches forward.

    Love the blog BTW… it makes work so much more bearable!

  2. 2
    Erin O'Brien says:

    Dear SBTN,

    Someone had to take the bait. From the plural for clitoris is clitorides, which I think is pronounced clit-or-e-deez.

    Who knew?

    ; )

  3. 3
    Amanda says:

    Jeez. Clitorides?! Personally I vote for clitori.

    As to the thrashing, headbanging G & R orgasm, the image will forever live in my head.

    Thanks, Candy

  4. 4
    Shaunee says:

    Ah, but having ones head bashed into a wall whilst experiencing the big O isn’t voluntary.  You wouldn’t, say, bang your head against the wall during a particularly passionate session of self (gotta get me a new dictionary,  masturbate wasn’t in mine) lovin’, would you?

    You really wouldn’t, right?  Right? *desperately*

    With that in mind, I conclude that head thrashing is totally a chick thing employed to encourage studly man’s most enthusiastic cooperation. 

    WE have no need to have our ego stroked during the entire sexual process.  Imagine a guy doing this:  missionary position is in place, hips moving like a piston and his head is moving like one of those sunflower pinwheels.  We all know we’d have a chamber pot at the ready for when he hurls split pea soup all over you.

    I say we boycott head thrashing.  Squealing like a pig should definitely be enough of an indicator that we are either having a world class orgasm or that we are trying to get you (Mr. Manly Man) through this process with as little fuss as possible.

  5. 5

    Hmmm… always had a sneaking fondness for cliterati.

    And there was me thinking that the “pleasantly sore” muscles experienced by heroines the day after a wallbanger were located somewhat lower than the neck. But have now reconsidered, since I recall that while misspending my youth, nothing was quite as painful, muscle-wise, as the morning after the mosh pit before.

  6. 6
    sherryfair says:

    The Clitorides.

    Anyone else think this sounds like a constellation?

  7. 7
    Candy says:

    Erin: Thank you. I now have a new word to play with, whee!

    Hey, anyone ever tried looking up “vaginae” on Merriam-Webster on-line, clicking on the audio pronunciation guide and hearing the dude say “vaginae” over and over and over? ‘Tis marvellously funny. (‘Tis also not my idea, but one Steve from popularized.)

    But have now reconsidered, since I recall that while misspending my youth, nothing was quite as painful, muscle-wise, as the morning after the mosh pit before.

    YES. Really, there’s no pain quite like neck pain. I remember being barely able to move my head back in yon Good Old Days.

    The Clitorides.

    Anyone else think this sounds like a constellation?

    Yes. One that’s notoriously difficult to pinpoint, but trust me, once you do find it, you’ll be ecstatic.

    I also think it sounds like an ancient Greek playwright. Aristophanes, Euripides, Clitorides… What kind of plays did Clitorides write? Tragi-comedies?

  8. 8
    Doug Hoffman says:

    As a connoisseur of Le Porn, I can tell you: no thrashing. Lip biting, that’s my personal favorite.

  9. 9
    Doug Hoffman says:

    I forgot to add that your knowledge of classical times is woeful. Clitorides is the muse of porn. I thought everyone knew that.

  10. 10
    Lisa says:

    Oi. Ow. The one time my head thrashed or at least did a semblance of thrashing, I had muscle spasms in my neck and shoulders so badly, I couldn’t get out of bed or turn my head for 2 days.

  11. 11
    Erin O'Brien says:

    Let’s face it, muses of porn, odes to Sapphos, and multiple orgasms aside, if and when there is ever more than one clitoris in a room, the person reporting on same will undoubtedly use a four letter and much more manageable word that starts with C, ends with T and contains one other consonant and a vowel (not U). He or she will throw an S on the end and, like it or not, there will be no argument among readers about usage and everyone will know exactly what said author is talking about.

  12. 12
    Sandy D. says:

    I think the head thrashing (especially side to side) is necessary so that the heroine’s long flowing locks can be appropriately displayed.

  13. 13
    Alyssa says:

    Thank you! I’ve noticed this in a number of romances, too. It yanks me right out of the moment as I’m reading and makes me think that the heroine is the victim of some terrible disease causing her to thrash uncontrollably.

    Another thing heroines do a lot is bite their lips. It’s time for authors to come up with descriptions.

  14. 14
    k says:

    So just last night I’m reading Jennifer Crusie’s Charlie All Night and in the very first sex scene, Charlie throws his head back, all thrashing and everything, and calls it ectasy. So that’s at least one hero who had to head bang. (and I thought, hey, there was just that entry …)

  15. 15
    Michelle, the Diva says:

    I’ve always thought of it as an “Orgasmic Seizure”.

    And that CAN’T be good.

  16. 16
    Miki says:

    I haven’t really noticed “thrashing”, but the one that’s been driving me nuts lately is “mewling”.  And this wussy little noise is attributed to kick-ass heroines as well as the more meek-and-mild types.

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