Originally published October 13, 2005:
What would you make of someone who intentionally leaves a pubic hair on your toilet seat every time he visits your home? This guy is ostensibly straight (married, even). I'm gay and my boyfriend and I have known him since college.
Anyway, I initially thought the pubic hair thing was just a coincidence, but for five years now I've found a single pubic hair on my toilet seat after every visit from him. He and his wife come over about once a week, and he always uses "my" bathroom (instead of my boyfriend's, which is just as convenient), so it's been pretty easy to isolate the source of the pubes. I realize that some people shed more than others, but he's not a hairy person, so the shedding of several hundred pubic hairs in the exact same location is obviously not just by chance.
Because I'm not attracted to him, I don't give much thought to his numerous hang-ups. But the pube thing has me a bit puzzled, if only because it's so damn weird. I can't decide if it's a demented attempt at eroticism, a passive-aggressive insult, or something else entirely.
Puzzled By Pubes
My response after the jump...
Here's an interesting, seemingly unrelated anecdote, PBP: I bought a new legal pad a few months ago and when I went to use it a photo fell out. It was a picture of a man and a woman having sex. The image wasn't some random porn shot clipped from a magazine; no, the couple in the photo were average looking, the photo was of poor quality, and it was clear from the angle that the man in the photo was holding the camera when the picture was taken. So how did it get in my legal pad?
There are freaks out there—and I use the word "freak" in the sex-positive sense—who get off on leaving pubes, photos, semen, and other sexually charged ephemera in places where innocent bystanders will happen upon them. Take, for instance, the perv—I use the world "perv" in the sex-positive sense—who sent me this note: "I like jacking off in strange settings," this perv wrote, "because I get really turned on by leaving my cleanup refuse in open view for whomever may be next in line to use the bed, toilet, or what have you after me. For example, when I was on an overnight train I left my tissues in a magazine rack next to the bed. The idea of strangers handling my semen is just too much to resist."
I suspect your college buddy derives a similar thrill from leaving his pubic hairs on your toilet seat. Is this about some secret attraction to you? Maybe, maybe not. Like the perv who leaves his used tissues in magazine racks, the pube perv has no way of knowing that you even realize he's placing stray pubes on your toilet seat. What's more, I doubt very much yours is the only toilet seat he's terrorizing. (Hairrorizing?) He's probably doing it to dozens of his friends and the gender and sexual orientation of his victims may be irrelevant.
So what do you do? Well, you could walk up to him in front of his wife holding one of his pubes with a pair of tweezers and say, "I believe this is yours" in a loud voice. He'll deny it, of course, which will force you to lay out your case—something that will be difficult to do without sounding like you're sexually obsessed with him. It would be wiser, therefore, to tape one of his pubes to a piece of paper on which you've written, "Knock it off, perv," and mail it anonymously to the hairrorist. Since he won't know which one of his numerous victims sent the note, you'll be doing everyone he knows a service.
Oh, and one last thought to help put things in perspective: I have a letter in my inbox from a man who indulges a similar impulse when he uses his friends' bathrooms. But he doesn't just leave his pubes behind: "I quickly rub one out," he writes, "and then put a tiny amount of my come on my friends' toothbrushes. I know it's wrong, and I feel bad about it, but I can't stop." Those pubes seem positively benign in comparison, don't they?
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