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Salad tossing has hit the mainstream

By Rik Weatherby, September 17, 2015 —

Everyone’s eating ass in 2015. Anilingus — the oft-forgotten, so-bad-it’s-good step-sibling of cunnilingus — involves using your mouth to sexually stimulate your partner’s anus.

But, like dating someone with a face tattoo, we’ve only just started to positively sanction the act of making out with someone’s butthole. And that’s only because we’ve all started talking about it.

Ass-eating populist Jhené Aiko strutted into the mainstream this year with her song “Post to Be.” In it she sings “I might let your boy chauffeur me/but he gotta eat the booty like groceries.”

And Aiko’s not the only popular artist talking about eating butt. Nicki Minaj rapped about salad tossing in her song “Anaconda,” while Miami rapper Trick Daddy recently proclaimed himself CEO of the Eat-A-Booty Gang.

GQ, Gawker and Cosmo all wrote about the “booty-eating renaissance” in 2014, months before Salon published an article entitled “Ass is the New Pussy: Why Anilingus is on the Rise.” Most of the media chatter started after Allison Williams’ character received anilingus — what she called “ass motorboating” — on an episode of HBO’s Girls.

Clearly, I’m not here to break the story on the mainstream embrace of anilingus. That’s already been done. I am here, though, alongside Nicki, Jhené and Mr. Daddy, to tell you that the underlying objections most people have towards the practice are completely alarmist.

Sadly, though, negative stereotypes live on. Ass-eating hasn’t yet reached the ubiquity of, say, the blowjob. The think pieces have stopped flowing and ass-licking is leaving its cultural honeymoon phase. As anilingus sits on the rim of normalcy’s inner circle, we should remember the lessons of its ascension.

Society-at-large only comes to terms with outliers after years of exposure. No one bats an eye when someone gets a blowjob, but the practice didn’t come into fashion until the middle of the 20th century. The societal taboo was removed only after years on the cultural fringe.

And that’s what all this talk of rimming will add up to. Cultural movements feast on shock value. Allison Williams’ ass became the butt of a thousand think-pieces because it gave people something new to talk about.

But exposure and normalization deflates the buzz. And once all is said and done, a new word is added to our vocabulary, and a new skill to our sexual-moves list.

To bring this a little closer to home, I’d argue that you can apply the same principle to the university experience.

Maybe you didn’t smoke, snort or fuck your weekends away in high school. But university is hopefully a place where you’ll stop scoffing at the people who did. This place is going to expose you to things you had no idea existed. Maybe it’ll take four years of cultural references for anilingus to normalize itself in our minds. And maybe it’ll take four years of university to get comfortable with some of the new things you’ll be exposed to.

Don’t wall yourself in or let prejudice undermine how you feel about the books you’ll read, the people you meet or, heaven forbid, the weird sex stuff you might try.

So go ahead, eat it. Eat it like groceries.

Rik Weatherby is a fourth-year political science student. He writes a monthly column about sex called Like Groceries

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