giddyup on a faux horse


Even in long ago Tudor times people knew the importance of exercise. But England’s weather being what it was, getting out and about for a quick gallop wasn’t always possible. Hence the invention of a spring loaded exercise chair or artificial horse

“It was a padded chair fitted on top of stout springs. The springs ran down to the ground and were attached to a wooden base. The rider sat in the chair and rocked himself violently backward and forward or up and down as if trotting briskly on a horse. “


image from Modern Mechanix

Several centuries later and you can buy a more up to date version here

“This is the latest hi-tech horse riding machine designed to give you an effortless exercise work-out, whilst helping you tone and condition muscles known to help you improve your figure. You just sit on the comfortable ergonomic seat, choose a program and let it do the work. To believe it, you have to ride it!”

exercise horse

I’ve never really understood the ponygirl fetish but there’s lots of devotees to this practice. Mariko Sugawa can make it look sexy and so did Maggie Gyllenhall in Secretary. But apart from that there’s something about a metal bit and a billiard ball in the mouth that leaves me feeling cold.

mariko sugawa

image found here

In 17th century France a famous “talking” horse named Morocco could perform mathematical calculations and other feats.

“He was charged with “consorting with the Devil,” but he saved his and his master’s lives by kneeling, seemingly repentant, before Church authorities.”


In 1929, the man who later coined the term ESP, Dr. J.B. Rhine, was taken in by a supposedly telepathic horse named Lady Wonder. Rhine believed Lady actually had psychic power and he set up a tent near her Virginia barn so he could scientifically study her apparent abilities. Lady was trained to operate a contraption—somewhat like an enlarged typewriter—consisting of an arrangement of levers that activated alphabet cards.”

Of course, these animals were not really able to talk or read minds but they probably put on pretty entertaining shows. Whether their performances were as good as this one by Dita Von Teese would depend on how you like your horses…..


Published in: on September 17, 2009 at 9:40 am  Comments (28)  

blowholes and prop men

Just south of Sydney is a charming little coastal town called Kiama. It’s famous for its blowhole and for being the birthplace of Oscar-winning Orry-Kelly.


Orry-Kelly designed the off the shoulder gown that Ava Gardner wore as Venus in the film version of Mannequin


image found here

“To help in the creation of a proper life-size statue to be used in the film, Ava was sent to pose for New York sculptor Joseph Nicolosi. At first clad in a two-piece bathing suit, she saw the sculptor repeatedly stop work to approach her and stare with concern at the swimming costume. “Would you like the bra off?” Ava asked.ava-gardner1-300x235

image by Tom Dunn

Nicolosi averred, and so Ava, after a steady stream of what she described as “hot drinks,” unhooked the swimsuit top and posed with breasts bared. Further sighs from Nicolosi eventually resulted in her rolling the bottom of the bathing suit to just below the pubic mound.

In February the sculptor proudly unveiled his finished work to producer Lester Cowan and was met with a torrent of invective.

“Are you crazy? Her tits are showing! How are we gonna put that in a movie?”


The sculptor was shattered. Another statue was made, this one wearing the belted-at-the-waist off-the-shoulder gown that Orry Kelly had designed for Venus, and America’s morals survived to fight another day.

Someone in the art department then created an eight-inch clay version of Venus, and before it was sent out for casting, publicist Bob Rains decided that as a courtesy they should show it to Ava first. “I took the clay model over to her dressing room and said, ‘Ava? What do you think?’ She looked it over an laughed ‘That’s not my figure.’ Then she pinched off some of the clay from the chest area and stuck it to the rear end. She smoothed it on with her finger and made the fanny bigger. She said, ‘That’s more like my ass.’

modern venus

(Many takes on the filming of One Touch of Venus had to be discarded due to the chiffon gown worn by Gardner on a chilly set; eventually prop man Roy Neal was assigned to follow the actress everywhere with a portable heater to avoid such horrors as visible erect female nipples)

ava nipples

Published in: on September 16, 2009 at 8:04 am  Comments (33)  

fluorescent green gonads

Some people have made a career out of studying mosquitos. Michael D’Antonio and Andrew Spielman did just that, and uncovered some interesting things along the way…..

“Mosquito sex is almost as remarkable as its human equivalent and probably more varied and dangerous. The male house mosquito often leaves his equipment behind after coupling. You have mosquito rapists. You have the satyristic tiger mosquitoes who are sort of like a conquering army who rape the women of the land they’ve subdued.

men are unusual

Scientists have long been experimenting with cross-breeding incompatible strains of mozzies (such as French and German or Californian and Burmese) which results in females laying infertile eggs.

infection control

Research published online in Nature Biotechnology, shows how a team from Imperial College London have altered male mosquitoes to express a green fluorescent protein in their gonads. Coupled with a high speed sorting technique, scientists will be able to identify the different mosquito sexes much more easily than by manually sorting.

mosquito with glowing gonads

Mosquitos, on emergence from the pupa are not instantly ready to have sex. The males have a rear end that must first rotate 180 degrees. They are born with the genital apparatus oriented the ancestral way and need 48 hours to twist it half a full circle. By the time the rear has undegone its twist, the bristles on its shaft have become erect. The mechanism of bristle erection involves the controlled application of hydrostatic pressure at the base.

(I can’t bring myself to post an image of a twisted human penis on the front page but if you  click this link you can see one here)

mosquito national geographic

image found here

Published in: on September 15, 2009 at 8:16 am  Comments (31)  

fan me with your flippers

The late David Foster Wallace once wrote a very persuasive article for Gourmet magazine about lobsters, asking us to consider why we eat them.


cartoon found here

“Up until sometime in the 1800s, lobster was literally low-class food, eaten only by the poor and institutionalized. Even in the harsh penal environment of early America, some colonies had laws against feeding lobsters to inmates more than once a week because it was thought to be cruel and unusual, like making people eat rats”

The article is ten pages long so click the link if you want to read more. It prompted me to investigate the lobster further and to discover some things I didn’t know about its sex life

Usually in a particular neighborhood, one lobster establishes himself as the dominant alpha male. And once his status is secured, he enforces it. Every night, he goes out and beats up all the other lobsters in the neighborhood, kicks them out of their houses, just to remind them who’s in charge.

Females will regularly go and visit the entrance to the alpha male’s shelter after he’s been beating them up. They follow him home, and they perform a variety of courtship rituals.

lobster leaps in

image found here

The problem is, the alpha male is so belligerent, he’s not really interested in romance.  So the females have to cajole him into a romantic mood.


Essentially they do this by drugging him into submission. When lobsters fight and when they flirt they communicate with each other basically by pissing in each other’s faces. They have these little urine-release nozzles right under their eyes, and they squirt urine at each other.

This relaxes the alpha male and reduces his aggression. He starts to swoon a little bit. He fans these little flippers under his tale to spread the urine around his apartment and savor its aroma.

Females do a few other courtship rituals, some little dances and stuff. They have to take their clothes off in order to mate so the female only mates right after she has shed her shell.

By moving in with him, she’s getting protection from the dominant male in her most vulnerable moment.


So she sheds her shell, and this beautiful copulatory event occurs. But the details are probably too racy for……”

national pornographic

If you’re interested in seeing racy details that might otherwise elude you, perhaps it’s time to invest in a Lobster Eye X Ray Inspection Device

x ray

image by Scott Camazine found here

Published in: on September 14, 2009 at 8:53 am  Comments (39)  

conform to this


To take full advantage of fashion trends, we humans have devised some pretty strange contraptions. The bespoke hat, for instance, must fit the customer’s head perfectly. Since 1764, hatmakers have used an invention known as the conformator to ensure their measurements are accurate.


Then there’s underwear. As  regular readers know, nursemyra is devoted to corsetry. But not quite as devoted as some of the women in my grandmother’s day

“I have heard talk about neck corsets. Such a device, of course, if it were truly a corset, would throttle the wearer in short order, however, one British actress, far, far beyond her ‘sell-by date’, did resort to a false neck. This ancient relic of the British music halls had developed a turkey skin wattle below her jaw. The false neck, made of stiffened flesh-coloured latex, covered her own neck and was secured beneath her wig at the back. A projecting piece of rubber fitted under her lower jaw, thus forcing the wattle into that convenient cavity from where it had dropped.

corset_and_neck piece

(You have to strain to see it, but the corset above has a celluloid neck piece attached)

There was even a special position to be assumed for the correct fitting and lacing of heavy longline body corsets. It was known as the Trendelenburg position


image found here

Now not so many women wear corsets, or if they do it’s only for special occasions. Plus there are other things on the market to enhance the less than perfect figure…..


And you don’t have to assume the Trendelenburg position to get into them. Though I imagine men would feel a twinge of disappointment to grab a handful of peachy arse that detaches itself from the young lady’s bottom before he’s even had a chance to give it a playful slap


Published in: on September 12, 2009 at 8:52 am  Comments (31)  

corset friday 11.9.2009

Corset Friday is a bit of a mishmash this week. It was going to be a feature incorporating 1950s bathing suits. But shortly after I started, the battery light in the camera began flashing so I ended up with barely any corsetry shots.

The black swimsuit is a genuine Versace I found in an op shop. The gorgeous floral was also an op shop find and the red suspenders were a gift from a friend…..

mishmash1 mishmash2 mishmash3

mishmash4 mishmash5 mishmash6


Published in: on September 11, 2009 at 9:28 am  Comments (41)  

nimblewrist or speedyhand?

Charlotte Hayes (1725-1812) was one of the major brothel keepers in early Georgian times. She kept records and a price list, though changed the names to protect her wealthy clients.

“A young girl for Alderman Drybones. Nelly Blosson, about 19 years old, who has had no one for four days, and who is a virgin 20 guineas


A girl of 19, not older, for Baron Harry Flagellum. Nell Hardy, Betty Flourish or Miss Birch 10 guineas

stuff with girl

A lively girl for Lord Sperm. Black Molly from Hedge Lane 5 guineas


Gentlewoman for Colonel Tearall. Mrs Mitchell’s servant 10 guineas


For Dr Frettext, after consultation hours, a young agreeable person with white skin and soft hands. Polly Nimblewrist or Jenny Speedyhand 2 guineas

Lady Loveitt, who is disappointed in her affair with Lord Alto, wants to be well served. Captain O’Thunder or Sawney Rawbone 50 guineas


For Count Alto, a fashionable woman for one hour only. Mrs O’Smirk 10 guineas

woman of fashion

Poor Lady Loveitt. She not only landed a dud when she began an affair with Lord Alto, she also had to pay much much more to be well served than any of her male contemporaries……..

Published in: on September 10, 2009 at 8:12 am  Comments (35)  

noble elasticity


Jack Harris (1710-1765) was the author of a list of prostitutes and their specialities. 8,000 copies a year were sold, launching many young women on the path to fame and fortune.

Miss Devonshire: Many a man of war has been her willing prisoner, her port is said to be well guarded by a light brown chevaux-de-frieze… the entry is rather straight, but when once in there is very good riding… she loves to fight yard arm and yard arm and be briskly boarded”

Miss Wilkinson: A pair of sweet lips….descend a little lower and behold the semi snowballs… next take a view of nature centrally…. no gaping orifice, no horrid gulph, but the loving lips tenderly kiss each other and shelter from the cold a small but easily stretched passage”


Miss Johnson: She has such noble elasticity in her loins she can cast her lover to the heights and receive him again with the utmost dexterity

arbus trtansvestite

image by Diane Arbus

Miss Lister: Her vagina is an Elysian font in the centre of a black bewitching grove


Miss Dodd: Is 40 but can still be alluring. She has erotic pictures to revive the impotent and gives a good cup of tea in the morning”

sexy legs by Undergrowth

Teacup found here

Published in: on September 9, 2009 at 8:29 am  Comments (30)  

how far can you chuck?


In 17th century London, some prostitutes developed special talents to earn more money. One of these was Priss Fotheringham who used to play what was known as “the chuck game”

“Priss stood on her head with naked breech and belly while four cully-rumpers chucked sixteen half-crowns into her commoditie. She performed this feat several times a day to acclaim from a crowd of enthusiastic fans.”


In the 18th century this game was played at the Rose Tavern near Drury Lane theatre.

“One of the posture-molls would strip naked and dance on an enormous pewter plate, then lie on her back, draw her knees up under her chin and clasp her hands under her thighs. The descriptions of this performance invite you to imagine what happened next as the drunken customers crowded round.


At some stage the posture-moll would snuff out a lighted candle in an obscene mockery of sex. Plate 3 of Hogarth’s The Rake’s Progress shows the act about to begin. In the background a porter named Leathercoat is bringing in the platter and the candle. Leathercoat, a man of prodigious strength, would for the price of a drink, lie down in the street and allow a carriage to ride over his chest.”


Published in: on September 8, 2009 at 11:44 am  Comments (40)  

you can do the highland fling


Australia in the early 20th century was not a country where dancing was encouraged. Several church ministers banned this scandalous activity, though the Highland Fling was permissable on the grounds that it was viewed as a pastime.

conquest in scotland

In 1928 a troupe of American entertainers performed at the Tivoli Theatre.

Melbourne’s Tivoli celebrated the jazz age by importing the Colored Idea, 35 singers, musicians and dancers fronted by Los Angeles bandleader Sonny Clay. The police went undercover among the jitterbug crowds to monitor fraternising between the black performers and local white women. At 3am on Sunday, March 25, the police raided a city flat and six musicians were sprung drinking and dancing with six white Australian women. The Truth headline: “White Girls With Negro Lovers: Flappers, Wine, Cocaine and Revels”.


image of Louis Armstrong by Lisl Steiner found here

They were quickly deported. Or maybe allowed to dance the Highland Fling instead – I’ll have to check.


Dulcie Deamer was better known as a writer but she loved to dance at the notorious Artist’s Balls in Sydney. An urban myth arose that she liked to dance the streets of Kings Cross at night wearing nothing but a leopard skin. Though photographed in this outfit, in reality it was only ever hired overnight from a fancy dress shop. Dulcie claimed to be too busy raising her children and writing novels and plays.


I don’t know if she could do the Highland Fling but splits were her specialty…..


Published in: on September 7, 2009 at 8:07 am  Comments (23)