纽约时报双语:为什么我在这家性用品商店“不受欢迎”?

为什么我在这家性用品商店“不受欢迎”?
Why Won’t Anyone Help Me in This Sex Shop?
DIANA DE VEGH
2021年8月13日
纽约时报双语:为什么我在这家性用品商店“不受欢迎”?

I didn’t see what the problem was. I’m a perfectly respectable woman who knows what she wants and has the ability to pay for it. At 83, I may be a little older than most, and legally blind, but generally speaking, people are pleased to welcome me into their shops and boutiques and promptly move forward to offer assistance.

我不知道这有什么问题。我是一个完全正派的女人,一个知道自己想要什么并且有能力负担的人。我今年83岁,可能比大多数人年龄大了一点,又是一个法定盲人,但是通常来说,当我进入商店或者精品店时,人们总是很高兴地欢迎我,并迅速向我走来提供帮助。

But here? In this sophisticated SoHo sex store? It was like a parting of the waters, with me marooned on a distant shore. No one was asking if I needed help finding anything. Worse yet, the friend I had invited specifically to review and report on the merchandise seemed to have vanished. Had she been magically vaporized in a mist of embarrassment by the array of multicolored dildos greeting us upon entry? What did she expect in a place like this? Variety is their specialty.

但这里?在SoHo区这家精致的性用品商店?那场面就好像摩西分海,而我被孤立在一个遥远的小岛上。没人问我是否需要帮忙寻找商品。更糟的是,我特意邀请来测评商品的朋友似乎消失了。是不是在门口迎接我们的五颜六色的假阳具让她在一阵尴尬的迷雾中神奇地蒸发了?她难道不知道这种地方就是这样的?品类多样是它们的优势。

I had it in mind to purchase a couple of delightful toys because I believe in the pursuit of happiness for people of all ages and proclivities. To this end, I was ready to buy, buy, buy, but there appeared to be no one to sell, sell, sell. Visually impaired as I am (as denoted by my jaunty, bedecked cane), one could surely see that assistance was imperative. Now, more than ever, I needed my companion.

我打算买几个令人愉悦的玩具,因为我相信任何年龄段和有任何喜好的人都可以追求幸福。为此,我准备买买买,但似乎没有人卖卖卖。像我这样的视力受损(就像我手中镶满装饰的欢快的导盲杖所表明的那样),人们肯定知道我需要帮助。现在,我比以往任何时候都更需要我的同伴。

But she had scuttled into some distant corner. She had seemed game, at the start, to accompany me on this shopping expedition. Why was she balking now? Surely it wasn’t possible for functioning adults to be bashful because they’re in an environment dedicated to pleasure. Such a disconnect would be absurd in this day and age, wouldn’t it?

但她已经跑到了某个遥远的角落。一开始,她似乎很乐意陪同我一起进行这场购物之旅。她现在怎么犹豫了?性功能正常的成年人怎么可能害羞,他们正处于一个致力于享乐的环境中。在这个时代,这种脱节很荒谬,不是吗?

My motto is: Sex for one, sex for two, sex for all who desire it. And that emphatically includes those of us who are deep into old, old age.

我的座右铭是:一个人可以做爱,两人可以做爱,所有渴望性的人都可以做爱。重点是包括我们这些高龄老人。

I find prudishness around sex shops baffling. I grew up in the 1950s when many of us were in thrall to Dr. Freud’s pronouncements concerning simultaneous vaginal orgasm. In the world of psychoanalytically prescribed correct sex, the use of accouterments would diminish the primacy of the almighty male organ. Out of the question back then. But surely we’re no longer bound by male ego syndrome.

我发现性用品商店的拘谨令人费解。我在1950年代长大,当时我们中的许多人深受弗洛伊德医生关于同时阴道高潮的说法的影响。在精神分析规定了正确性行为的世界里,使用道具会削弱全能的男性器官的首要地位。所以在那个时候根本不会考虑。但我们现在肯定不再受男性自我综合征的束缚。

Do we really believe that the poor things are so fragile that unless they are a woman’s one and only source of sexual pleasure, they will lose their status as masters of the universe? Why would we impose such a burden on these harried souls? We all know that any right-thinking person wants to please his, her or their partner, friend, passing fancy or recent acquaintance. Such a person will sometimes, under some circumstances, be happy to suggest bringing in reinforcements.

我们真的相信这些可怜的家伙是如此脆弱,他们必须是女性唯一的性快感来源,否则就会失去宇宙主宰的地位吗?为什么我们要把这样的负担强加给这些被折磨的灵魂?我们都知道,任何脑筋正常的人都想取悦他、她或他们的伴侣、朋友、旧情人或新相识。在某些情况下,这样的人有时会很乐意建议引入帮手。

For some of us, the era of the quickie is over. Nonetheless, a midday solo excursion or a teatime rendezvous for one might be just the ticket. No matter the setting, Toys Can Be Us for adults.

对于我们中的一些人来说,匆匆解决的时代已经结束。尽管如此,中午的独自探索或下午茶时间的约会可能就是我们需要的。无论是怎样的设定,成人也可以有玩具。

When people disparage sex shops, they often do so with the cliché that “sex should be natural.” Well, yes, but sometimes sex can be amplified with music, scent, fantasies and toys, as well as touch and stroke. And, of course, all of these additions can enhance one singular sensation as well as delectable duets, trios, quartets and so on. Could it be that we are still estranged from our vaginas? If my shopping companion was overwhelmed or undereducated on such matters, it was my duty to set her straight.

当人们贬低性用品商店时,他们通常会说“性应该是自然的”这样的陈词滥调。嗯,是的,但有时性爱可以通过音乐、气味、幻想和玩具,以及触摸和抚摸来放大。而且,当然,所有这些补充都可以增强独奏的感觉,以及令人愉悦的二重奏、三重奏、四重奏等等。难道说,我们仍然与阴道关系疏远?如果我的购物伙伴在这些问题上不知所措或受教育不足,我有责任帮助她。

Rescue was in order. I knew I had to engage and dispel whatever bizarre notions she had that were keeping her from her appointed task of being my eyes. Why was she not surveying the scene, deciding on an appealing display of inventory and marching us interestedly down that aisle? Was it a question of age? Hers, not mine. She was, after all, a sprout of only 40-ish. Perhaps her elusive behavior might simply be the folly of youth.

需要发起一场救援。我知道我必须聆听并消除她所拥有的任何奇怪的观念,这些观念使她无法完成指定的任务,即做我的眼睛。为什么她不观察现场,选择一个吸引人的商品,然后兴致勃勃地带着我走向那个货架?是年龄的问题吗?那是她的问题,不是我的。毕竟,她是一个只有40岁左右的小嫩芽。也许她难以捉摸的行为可能只是年轻人在犯傻。

Locating my shopping companion at last, I laid a comforting hand on hers. “Speak up!” I said. “Why the timidity?”

终于找到了我的购物伙伴,我把手放在她的手上安慰她。“说吧!”我说。“为什么胆怯?”

“I thought you were joking when you mentioned a jaunt to a sex shop,” she said. “We don’t do this where I come from. Lord have mercy.”

“当你提到去性用品商店逛逛时,我以为你在开玩笑,”她说。“我们那里人可不会这样做。求主怜悯。”

I could almost hear her blushing.

我几乎能听到她脸红的声音。

“My dear,” I said. “Total pride in all of our adventures is another one of my mottos. No shame, no judgment.”

“亲爱的,”我说。“为我们所有的冒险感到无比自豪是我的另一个座右铭。没有羞耻,没有评判。”

Was there a problem with the idea of an old, blind social worker as sexual enhancement guru? Or was the problem my clear voice penetrating the hushed environment? I didn’t know. No use in giving her distressed thinking any more airtime. I grasped her arm firmly, and we sashayed together down the aisle.

将一位年长的盲人社工作为性爱技巧提升大师的想法有什么问题吗?还是我清晰的声音穿透了寂静的环境成了问题?我不知道。再给她时间继续痛苦思考也是没用的。我牢牢抓住她的手臂,我们一起沿着货架走过去。

Pink, purple, baby blue, turquoise — so many intriguing items in such delicious colors. I will not detail the equipment on offer, as I want to encourage personal journeys of exploration.

粉红色、紫色、淡蓝色、绿松石色——这么多色彩缤纷的有趣物件。我不会详细介绍这里卖的道具,因为我想鼓励你们自己去探索。

A bar of music floats through the window, bringing flashback memories with it. An evening of slow, solitary enjoyment. A fragrant bath, self massage with scented body oil, a special playlist, a special menu to assist in adjusting the rhythms of pleasure. How convenient to have that soupçon of electrical energy tucked into the night stand drawer. Instant inspiration. A new, modern meaning for the old timeout.

一段音乐飘过窗户,带来闪回的记忆。一个缓慢而孤独的夜晚。香喷喷的浴缸,用香氛精油给自己按摩,一张专门的音乐播放列表,一个帮助调整愉悦节奏的特殊菜单。把那股电动能量塞进床头柜抽屉里是多么方便。瞬间的启发。暂时休息有了新的现代含义。

My companion and I completed our purchases. Released at last from her preconceived notions, she had gotten into the swing of things and followed my good example: Purple rules! We exited the store swinging twin shopping bags and stood at the corner laughing. Two friends enjoying the snap, crackle and pop of life.

我和我的同伴买好了东西。她终于从先入为主的观念中解脱出来,投入到事物的美好中,跟随我这个好榜样:紫色最棒!我们甩着两个购物袋走出商店,站在街角大笑。两个朋友享受着生活的快节奏、欢笑和潮流。

There should be no age limits on the sensual, sexual life. Erotic energy is always age appropriate. It is a way of being in the world, a gala twist we add to our mundane routines. We flirt with the bus driver, wear a red slip under a black dress, let a perfect piece of chocolate melt tantalizingly on our tongue.

取悦感官的性生活不应该有年龄限制。性爱能量总是适合其年龄的。这是一种存在于世界的方式,是我们在平凡的日常生活中添加的庆祝调剂。我们与公交车司机调情,在黑色连衣裙下穿着红色衬裙,让一块完美的巧克力在我们的舌头上诱人地融化。

Our bodies are our friends — not just trays to carry around our heads. We register the world through our senses. Sources of grounding and delight. And although in old age we are familiar with diminished hearing and vision, let us use our deficits to pull closer to taste, touch and smell.

我们的身体是我们的朋友——不仅仅是托着头的盘子。我们通过感官来记录世界。那是接地气和快乐的来源。虽然在老年时我们的听力和视力总会下降,但我们的感官缺失可以帮助我们拉近味觉、触觉和嗅觉。

We’re in the final act. We can let go of so many things. Climbing and striving, for example. Body shaming, for another. Most of us have come to terms with gravity, as manifested in our somewhat altered body shapes. The self-doubt that can blight even our most intimate moments no longer prevails.

我们正在上演最后一幕。我们可以放下很多东西。例如,攀升和奋斗。再比如,身体羞辱。从我们多少有些改变的身形上看出,我们大多数人已同地心引力达成和解。甚至那些妨碍我们最亲密时刻的自我怀疑也被置诸脑后。

We must center pleasure: It is our freedom. Always available, our sensory reality locates us. It is how we honor the prodigious gift of being alive. We land in the breath, blood and bone of our physical beings. Finally, we belong.

我们必须以快乐为中心:这是我们的自由。快乐始终都在,我们的感官现实帮我们找到它。生命是一个超凡的礼物,这就是我们尊重它的方式。我们降生在我们肉体的呼吸、血液和骨骼中。最后,我们属于彼此。

Why not continue the celebration with some treasures from a sex shop? I live in the complicity of longtime love. Two conspirators, living in the comedy of our messy, complicated and beautiful lives. Toys or no toys, it doesn’t matter. What matters is the laughter. The humor of our preparations for liftoff. Funny but sometimes laced with sorrow. We old ones know we will lose each other one of these days. Someone has to go first. I’m not kind; I pray it’s me.

为什么不从性用品商店购买一些宝贝继续庆祝呢?我生活在长期爱情的共谋中。两个阴谋家,活在我们凌乱、复杂、美好生活的喜剧中。有没有玩具都无所谓。重要的是大笑。我们为高潮做准备的幽默。有趣,但有时也夹杂着悲伤。我们这些老人们知道,不知道哪天我们就会失去彼此。必须有人先走。我很坏;我祈祷是我。

But in the meantime, my focus is on closeness. I want unencumbered, uninhibited and unmitigated mind, body and partner-to-partner union.

但与此同时,我关注亲密。我想要不受阻碍、不受约束和彻头彻尾的心灵、身体和伴侣之间的联盟。

In the secrets of our flesh, my partner and I find each other. We delve and discover. He sits on the edge of the bed, removes his glasses, folds them neatly and places them on the night stand. He is deliberate, my love. He focuses with intention.

在我们肉体的秘密中,我和我的伴侣找到了彼此。我们探索和发现。他坐在床沿,摘下眼镜,整齐地叠好放在床头柜。他是有意这么做的,我的爱人。他有意专注于此。

When he turns his head, I can’t see his expression, but I believe I can feel it, and I know what will come next.

当他转过头时,我看不到他的表情,但我相信我能感觉得到,我知道接下来会发生什么。

He turns off the light.

他关上了灯。

Tucked in his arms, I match my breathing to his. A touch, a word, a caress. I sink down, five fathoms deep. I stretch out, am gathered up. I prepare to fly. We live in old bodies, this man and I, but for the moment, we live — strong in desire, sure in the bright joy of our flight.

蜷缩在他的怀里,我与他同呼同吸。一丝碰触,一声呢喃,一个爱抚。我向下沉,被海水淹没。我伸展开来,被收拢起来。我准备飞翔。这个男人和我,我们生活在衰老的身体里,但在此刻,我们在欲望中强有力地活着,在我们明亮欢快的飞行中真切地活着。

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