So there I am getting off beneath “The Creation of Adam” (a smaller piece of Michelangelo’s fresco than you’ve been led to believe) and… on second thought, this might require a preface.
I’ve masturbated on a daily or near-daily basis for long enough that my wanks have numbered well into the thousands. I consider nearly all of these to have been healthy experiences done as a means of release, relaxation, or (I’ll admit) procrastination. But whether day or night, rain or shine, aided by pornography, erotica, or the never-failing smut generator I lovingly call my imagination, there’s nary an experience I would classify as anything other than a perfectly ordinary bit of pleasurable alone time the likes of which any sexually mature individual should find relatable.
Naturally, I’m writing about the exception.
It was my senior class Europe trip, and yes, there I was in Vatican City. I expected to find the papal home base a nice enough stop to round out the cross-continental adventure my friends and I had embarked upon over the past three weeks, but from the moment I arrived I was put off. No matter how impressive the surroundings or gorgeous the artwork, I couldn’t separate the majesty of the place from its history of repression, discrimination, and all the other bad Church shit that I’d come to know and loathe in my inevitable journey from secular Jew to confirmed atheist.
In fact, the more beautiful the holy sights the more irritated I became that this seat of power had such a collection of wonders when their official policies and the influence those policies have had on the world at large rubbed me so firmly the wrong way. Though I’m not certain what my line of logic was (“It was a long trip and we were all very tired,” he said, rationalizing his act of public indecency) I soon got it in my head that it would be a nice little show of defiance if I somehow managed to rub myself the right way before leaving the premises. That’ll teach ‘em to build an empire founded upon the shaming of natural urges! Truly, I am a crusader for justice.
I got my chance in the Sistine Chapel. Well not in it, exactly; there’s a bathroom sort of underneath the building where I stole away and spent some time summoning my own holy spirit while my classmates along with hundreds of other tourists gazed up at Michelangelo’s pretty pictures, never thinking for a moment (I should hope not, anyway) that I was below them having one of the least enjoyable masturbatory experiences of my life.
Despite the sinfulness of the thing, the “sexy taboo” factor just wasn’t doing it for me. But I persevered, not for myself, but as an act of protest against the whole damned institution. Much like Jesus would have.
And yes, just to to say that I had. Because if anyone asks for a good masturbation story, well… here we are. Mercy on my soul.