I Wouldn’t Bank On It

***NB: I started writing this on 2nd September. I finishing and posting it on 6th October. I did what I so often do with things that I start writing – text messages, notes, anything – which is, get about halfway through, get bored, stop with the intention of completing it soon and then promptly forgetting all about it for ages. As it is about an Internet Thing, and Internet Things change quicker than your best granny-panties on a Hot Sunday (what), the page this article is on about is probably fairly obsolete. Oh well. I am woman, hear me ramble.***

The Wank Bank. Its a thing, you’ve most likely heard of it, probably in the jokey context of someone seeing a photo of their male friend baring his glorious hairy nipples and slight beer gut in a ‘comedy’ mankini saying something along the lines of “ooft, that’s one for the wank bank!” – but with the implication that “the wank bank” is actually a place to store aesthetically pleasing pictures that would inspire you to knock – or rub, or stroke, spank, vibrate, whatever – one out.

There’s essentially nothing wrong with keeping a collection of images that make you happy in your panties. I’ve got one. A few, in fact. Generally, these are private things. But recently I noticed a Facebook page by the name of The Wank Bank appearing on my newsfeed. Curious, I had a little flick click and found it was a) exactly what I’d expected and b) a little depressing. So, I’ve come here, to the safety (??) of my blog, to have a little lament about the General Shiteness Of Things, using this particular Thing as one example out of many. Below, I just do my usual trick of describing things in a disgruntled, sardonic, but hopefully vaguely amusing way for the sake of it – there is no argument, conclusion, or ground-breaking intellectual stuff, so if that’s what you came here expecting, you’d be best to skip off now. (You have been warned. So if you comment moaning about the lack of any of the above, I will bite you).

The Wank Bank features lots of pictures of heavily made up, scantily clad women, doing things that no one actually ever does unless they’re getting a ‘sexy’ picture taken (or indeed taking a sexy picture of themselves, an often ill-fated activity as it is damn near impossible to keep a steady hand whilst manoeuvring yourself into some of the poses described below), like grabbing on to their boobs whilst lunging forward, eyes closed and pouting. Or leaning to the side, head cocked, with their mouth hanging open a little bit*.

(*I have names for these poses. I like to call the first one “Holy shit a wasp just stung my nipples!”, and the second, “Awkward-Paralysis-You’ll-Probably-Start-To-Dribble-Soon”)

This page has become very popular, and so each photo is accompanied by over 9000 comments, mostly from appreciative males who seem to have invested wholeheartedly in this bank. Most of the comments – as I was expecting – are sexist, aggressive, and objectify the women in question. Pretty much all of them describe what these charming men would do to the photographed girls – lets call them the Bankettes. Not what they would LIKE to do to them. What they WOULD do to them, with hardly any acknowledgement of the part female agency and consent would have to play in such acts as those described in these delightful comments copied verbatim from the page:

“u no i wud not leave that aloan lol”

“I wld b in tht bath with those hot n sexy women n fuckin n sucking them.oooooooooooh yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeah”

“Pull them panties to one side and ground an pound lol”

Obviously, I am not saying that the fact of not acknowledging consent in a Facebook comment of some random woman’s boobies means the author of the comment wouldn’t acknowledge consent in real life. But, the fact that these kind of comments are just so commonplace downright creeps me out, and suggests a fucking ridiculous attitude that seems to be part and parcel of ‘lad culture’.

These comments are also a baffling and hilarious demonstration of male ego – lets bear in mind here that a large majority of the commentators look like they’ve stepped straight off the set of Jeremy Kyle and into the nearest kebab shop, armed with a six-pack of K cider – i.e. probably NOT the sorts of specimens that shit-hot girls like the Bankettes would ever dream of letting near them. (Although I suppose, one COULD argue that the fact that the Bankettes seem to seek validation and attention by wriggling around half-naked pouting or biting their lips in front of a camera suggests that actually, they may not be *that* discerning. I’m not saying that that’s my opinion. Nor that it should be yours. I’m just throwing that out there).

Another thing that made me uncomfortable about the Bank is the sheer fucking hive-mind of the comments. Of the comments that don’t fit into the pattern of those I posted above, there are three other main kinds. Below, I’ve posted examples of each, along with the typical kind of comments they are met with:

Comment Response this is met with when  posted by a man Response this is met with when  posted by a woman
“Ew, fake boobs and too much make up, I think natural beauty is prettier” “mate u must b fukin gay” “Ur just jel cos ur fat and ugly”
“Err she’s not fit 2/10 would not bang” “mate u must b fukin gay”  – I haven’t really seen examples of this kind of comment being posted by a woman. –
Funny comment on the mise-en-scene of the picture e.g. “nice vase” “mate u must b fukin gay”” Generally ignored

See? Hive-mind. A big, homophobic, hive-mind. Mmmmm.

There is also a massive use of the word ‘slut’ in the comments, used to describe the Bankettes. Ok, I realise I have already mentioned that the fact that these lasses have taken these photos in the first place could perhaps be used to attempt to assume certain things about them. But the last time I checked, the definition of ‘slut’ is basically a woman who has a whole lot of sex with a whole lot of people a whole lot of the time. Meaning that the braying accusations of Sluttery are completely groundless. Unless there is some really really small print Photoshopped on to the pictures that provides a graphic commentary of exactly what sexual acts the Bankettes have done, how many people they have done them to, and with what kind of frequency. In what can only be described as an act of top-notch investigative journalism, I zoomed in to some of the pictures and put my face really really close to the screen but I couldn’t see any writing and after a while the boob-pixels started to hurt my eyes. Which presumably means the guys who are convinced the Bankettes are ‘sluts’ must have better eyesight than me. Which suggests that whoever it was that claimed masturbation makes you go blind needs to rethink things a little bit. That is of course, assuming that most people who trawl through photos on a page full of pictures of attractive semi-naked girls masturbate a lot. Then again, I too masturbate a lot, meaning that most of the content of the last couple of sentences is actually completely irrelevant to everything. Crikey, aren’t random series of baseless assumptions confusing and fun?

Peace and fucking. x

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