Personally, P+J liked the tale of this gentleman who came in third place. To call him clueless would be the mother of all understatements: "After stepping around a marked police patrol car parked at the front door, a man walked into H&J Leather & Firearms intent on robbing the store. The shop was full of customers and a uniformed officer was standing at the counter. Upon seeing the officer, the would-be robber announced a hold-up and fired a few wild shots from a target pistol. The officer and a clerk promptly returned fire, and several customers also drew their guns and fired. The robber was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics. Crime scene investigators located 47 expended cartridge cases in the shop. The subsequent autopsy revealed 23 gunshot wounds. Ballistics identified rounds from 7 different weapons. No one else was hurt."
Actually, fictional sex has been the mainstay of men's locker rooms since the first Neanderthals hung out in caves trading hunting stories. (Going from, "Yeah, I nailed her. Ooola was beggin' me for it" to "Sharon Stone? I had her when she was good.")
But let us actually bring some culture into this arena with the announcement of The Literary Review's "Bad Sex in Fiction Award" for 2010. Culling from the press release, "Rowan Somerville is the winner of the eighteenth annual Literary Review Bad Sex in Fiction Award. The prize was awarded for passages from his second novel, The Shape of Her. 'There is nothing more English than bad sex,' said Somerville. 'So on behalf of the nation, I thank you.' The judges' minds were made up by sentences such as: 'Like a lepidopterist mounting a tough-skinned insect with a too blunt pin he screwed himself into her.' "
Tantalized by that snippet of erotica, P+J researched some other award -winning lines from previous years, which we present here:
"Hoyt began moving his lips as if he were trying to suck the ice cream off the top of a cone without using his teeth . . . Slither slither slither slither went the tongue, but the hand that was what she tried to concentrate on, the hand, since it has the entire terrain of her torso to explore and not just the otorhinolaryngological caverns."
— Tom Wolfe, 2004 winner, from I Am Charlotte Simmons
"Her hand is moving away from my knee and heading north. Heading unnervingly and with a steely will towards the pole . . . Ever northward moves her hand, while she smiles languorously at my right ear. And when she reaches the north pole, I think in wonder and terror—she will surely want to pitch her tent."
— Christopher Hart, 2001, Rescue Me
"She made a noise somewhere between a beached seal and a police siren."
— Nicholas Royle, 1997, The Matter of the Heart
And, of course, David Huggins's brilliant prose in 1996's The Big Kiss: "Liz squeaked like wet rubber."
And so P+J.
WHERE DOES HE GO TO GET HIS REPUTATION BACK?
Perhaps you remember this famous quote from former US Labor Secretary Raymond Donovan, who served under President Ronald Reagan. He was indicted in New York along with six other people for their involvement with an alleged shakedown involving the Genovese crime family. All the defendants were acquitted and Donovan, with his career in government service totally shattered, asked the question, "What office do I go to get my reputation back?"