And you thought the Gandalf-on-Frodo slash fiction that circulates every time there's a new LOTR installment was unsettling? You have no idea. Or actually, maybe you do. I didn't, though, until longtime Bitch contributor Noah Berlatsky asked me if he could write about the Obama slash that's apparently been sweeping the nerdier corners of these Internets for some time.
Tell me more, I asked him. A few days later, he wrote back with a change of heart. "It's just not worth the psychic trauma." Well, folks, I'm here to say that it kind of is. Welcome to the LiveJournal community called Polifics, where users can post any artifact of political cyberwonkery (LolPols!), but where unholy tales of political couplings amongst 2008's main players are the main attraction.
Take "Smile, For Your Heart is Breaking," a story of Michelle Obama returning to a campaign-trail hotel to find her august spouse with an unlikely companion in compromising…oh, jeez, just read on.
When she creeps into the hotel suite at one in the morning, though, and hears deep moans coming from the master bedroom, she feels her heart turn to jelly.
Who is he with? she wonders, tongue dry and heart thumping. There aren't that many women on the campaign team, maybe it's Linda---
"Joe, oh my God, Joe..." She hears his voice, clear and persuasive, caught up in passion and lust with his Vice Presidential candidate.
Those who prefer not to picture the country's leaders with breath jagged and ties askew, or indeed in any scenario not involving pants, take heed: presidential skin-on-skin follows. (Note, however, that I didn't say hot presidential skin-on-skin.) The well-organized forum allows you to search for fanfic by both rating and pairing, which is handy in that it ensures that users looking for a PG-13 Obama/Rahm Emmanuel tongue kiss don't blindly stumble into an eyeball-searing NC-17 tryst involving Al Gore and… I can't even type it, but it rhymes with "Porge Gush."
I want to make clear that I am all for slash fiction: It's imaginative, it's goofy, and, with the exception of the aforementioned too-close-to-NAMBLA-for-comfort wizard/hobbit pairings, it can be pretty fun. But I don't know. As the job of U.S. president has become one that's more pop cultural than ever it's become de rigeur — at least in the realm of opinion polls — to imagine yourself having a beer with your Commander-in-Chief. Next go-round, are the pollsters going to be asking about Slippery Nipples? I mean, if you really do want to find out what happens when Jack Kemp just happens to idly fondle a silky hank of John Edwards's magnificent hair as they talk strategy, be my guest. But don't say I didn't warn you.
UPDATE: Noah adds some more links at his blog.