My two cents in the vajayay “controversy”

As I don’t watch much tv and I hang out with the old folks, I did not hear the term vajayay until it hit the blogsphere.

 My first encounter with the word was praise of it on feministing.  From there I heard it was popularised by “Grey’s Anatomy” not because the writers felt it was something a woman would say, but because “vagina” is offensive. Another critique is that is sounds childish because of the repitition of sounds, (jayay). Then feminsiting points me to this article.

now Jessica did a wonderful job deconstructing the article at Feministing, but I have a few of my own comments I’d like to make. (and possibly repeat)

Personally I think the word is neither here nor there. It doesn’t offend me particuarly, but i’ve always been hard to offend with a single word out of context. It depends who says it and how that I might be offfended. No, the word itself doesn’t rile me up. it kind of reminds me of Poonani (sp?) which is what my sister and I used to call it. Yes I do think it is childish and if anyone said to me, “I want to stick my dick in your vajaya” I would find it disturbing, or funny or both depending on who said it. It seems like a very nonsexual sounding word. good for discussions of it when you don’t want to sound sexual, or for kids to say, or to relate funny stories about.

 But this guy is rediculous.  He makes me want to scream “vagina” at the top of my lungs over and over again.  

here he claims there isn’t a good word for the female anatomy:

Funny how we’ve never had similar trouble with our own plumbing: pecker, johnson, shaft and rod always seem to do the trick just fine. But things have always been more complicated when it comes to women.

And not just for what we guys call it, but women’s usage, too.

Vagina has always been out there, but it’s never been quite right. It’s uninviting, and seems to have an edge to it. There are plenty of other choices, including the dreaded c-word, which is nasty.

Harvard psychology professor Steven Pinker counts at least 1,200 terms for the vagina in the history of the English language.

But we’ve never settled on any other.

Ummm right you’ve settled on exactly what for the male anatomy? He mentions 4 different words for penis then complains there isn’t a particular universal slang word for vagina.
He then makes euphamistic references to it throughout the article. He maked oh-so-punny references to “the female zone”, “but I refuse to beat around the bush”, “has got us thinking outside of the box”. So he finds nothing wrong with using these other words for vagina, but because there isn’t a universal word it’s just not good enough? Personally I find the idea of a universal euphamism for vagina to be more than disconcerting.

There is nothing wrong with a silly word like vajaya, but if that is the only word we are allowed to use that would mean there would never be a serious discussion of female anatomy again. How would men feel if they wrere coerced into feeling like they had to use the term “ding-a-ling” or (my personal favorite) “rumpleforeskin” to refer to their genitals? Especially if (in this fantasy land) we were allowed to say vagina as many times as we wanted in a tv show about medicince but had to resort to “ding-a-ling” after a couple times of saying the word penis.

Perhaps oppressed? We should not have to settle on a single euphamism for our genetalia, and we should be able to use the clinical term.

The feminists, it seems, have a proprietary interest in female genitalia.

Oh the horror I have a proprietary interest in my own genitals. It is my body, right? I guess he thinks it should be his body, as evidenced by this:

Unlike the starkly clinical vagina, I see a vajayjay as a happy and inviting place, with a warm and fuzzy connotation. Vajayjay says “hello . . . welcome” and “open for business.” “Vagina” screams textbook. “Vajayjay” says Facebook.

Personally I don’t want my vagina to say “open for business”. it is mine to with as I choose. (and I choose very carefully). I only want to welcome those I want. not the whole world, and especially not this writer.

There is one sentence I agree with (and i have to take it out of context to do so):

It has such a sense of taboo that nobody feels totally comfortable talking about it…

Yes it is taboo in this culture to say vagina. but that is why some people are upset with this new word. The word Vigina shouldn’t be taboo. If we use the term more, we can be free from taboo. And maybe the word vagina would be more “comfortable”.
Of course I cut the above sentence in half. in context it is:

Vagina is a tough word that refuses to roll easily off the tongue. It has such a sense of taboo that nobody feels totally comfortable talking about it – not even women, but especially men. So use of the word remains almost exclusively to the feminists

Because feminists aren’t men or women, we are not human. We are outside of humanity. This implication really irks me.

in the end i think that talking about vagina’s is a step in the right direction even if we call them something else. But we should not only call them something else and still need to work toward calling them by their proper medical name.

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. That guy’s article is so typical it only really warrants an eyeroll from me. Men being sexist? Shock! Horror! How utterly … predictable :p

    The first time I came across the word vajayjay was during my performance in the Vagina Monologues, so suffice to say the word has a rather positive connotation of reclaiming vaginas and womanhood in general. I’ve always preferred “fannyboo,” though that could just be because the way the girl said it was universally hilarious.

  2. Yeah…. I suppose I could just eyeroll. If it were more over the top I would…

    also as a mathematician, the internal logical inconsistencies really irk me! GAH!!

  3. You have to wonder with Grey’s Anatomy. Considering the fact that one of the stars is gay. Maybe they thought vajayay would be less insulting to his mindset. I know a lot of effeminate gay me who seem to have a problem saying the word “vagina”. Most of the time they use the slang for vagina as an insult to women. That cunt, that fish, that aquarium, that fishbowl, fish market. I truly find those “fish” terms insulting because I happen to be born of a woman. And quite happy that I came out of a vagina into this world. I once heard a gay man using those insults in describing a woman he hated and i finally told him to shut up. I reminded him that his mother was a woman and without the so-called “fishbox” his sorry ass wouldn’t be here. He was taken aback by what I said and then became flippant stating he was insulting all women, just the one he hated. I left it alone because there is no use in arguing with a fool. But now i have to write a post on this in my blog because it made me realize something…

  4. […] 10th, 2007 This is something of a continuation of my comment on NakedThoughts web blog.  Thanks to her i now know what a “pootananny” is.  I had heard the word before but […]

  5. I say vajayjay. I love it. I use it in writing. It’s fun and hasn’t been used by men to demean women so it’s neutral.

    With my 6 yo daughter, I say vagina. But, it’s a little inaccurate because what I’m usually talking about is her vulva and labia. Which feels way too weird to say.

  6. Oh dear God.. What is wrong with you, Tracee?


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