27 Seconds of 8mm

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For Lois

Every once and while the rumor of this movie’s existence surfaces again in our community and, I’m pretty sure, I’m the one who started it in a post I wrote, over 15 years ago, on a now long-dead fetish board. So I’ve decided to step forward and clarify what I actually saw.

First of all, I never said was her for certain. The footage was black & white 8mm, grainy and scratched, cut together roughly out of bits of film that looked like it had survived being burned.

Now, this was way before the internet and the only way pervs of a feather had to meet one another was through ads in the back of sleazy porn magazines. It was only by pure accident that I even saw this guy’s ad in one I had stumbled across. I was so just surprised to see anyone that felt the same way I did (we do) that I wrote him. We swapped a couple of letters and he turned out to live not very far from me so, when he offered to show me his collection of pictures and such, I took him up on it and made the trip. We didn’t really hit it off on a personal level, though. Frankly, he was way too obsessive and weird for me. He would go dumpster diving behind salons, for example, and said some kind of creepy things. I didn’t contact him again for a couple of months after my visit and, when I did write him again, the letter came back marked that he wasn’t at that address anymore. It wouldn’t have surprised me if he had done something that had landed him in jail.

Still, he was not lying about his collection and I saw some great stuff like I never thought I would (you kids have it so easy these days) and that 27 seconds of film he had gotten from god-knows-where and spliced together himself, was his pride and joy. He only played it for me twice, projecting it on a sheet he had thumb tacked to the wall. That, and the stills he had made by enlarging certain frames, was all I ever saw of it.

As I remember, the camera catching it all seemed to have been set up and left running by itself, the angle of the shot never moved at all. There were 3 people visible, a man and two women. The woman in question was lying on her back on some sort of covered, low platform; like a coffee table or a large ottoman. Her arms and legs were bound to each corner and, most of the time she kept her face turned away from the camera like she was afraid to show it.

The man, whose upper body was out of frame the whole time, was sitting behind the bound woman, his pants down and rubbing his erection (no more than average size, despite what you might have read in later versions) on her head, which looks freshly shaved. You can see shaving cream behind her ear and both her head and his erection are shiny, maybe from oil. The other woman keeps her back to the camera as she shaves the bound woman’s pussy with the kind of razor like my father used; one of those ones where you’d twist the handle and the top would open up to put a blade in. I remember this woman’s nails and hair looked like she had just had them both done.

So, was it really her? He was sure convinced of it and pointed out several reasons he thought so. He claimed the man and the other woman were Irving and Paula Klaw and the man’s body type did look similar to pictures I’ve seen and the body of the bound woman could have been hers. Also, she was wearing a garter belt and stockings identical to the ones she wore in well-known photographs. At one point the man grabs her by the head and forces her face towards the camera, but only for a second. Even seeing the blown-up frames, I couldn’t be certain. The lighting was bad and her lipstick was smeared. Her eyebrows were familiar, but the expression on her face – a raw mix of shame and lust – was unlike any of the playful, girlish grins and grimaces one associates with the pin-up queen of the universe. I just don’t know if it was her or if I just wanted it to be.

But, there was a mirror on the wall in the shot. And, enlarged, you could see pretty clearly the refection of a wig on a wig block; raven, blunt-cut waves, and those wide, thick bangs she gave her name to.

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