What the fuck does it mean to fuck a bike?” Reverend Phil Sano asked the crowd at C4 Workspace on Monday, March 8. The dozens of San Antonians assembled in the King William community space were about to find out. Sano was screening Bike Porn 3: Cycle Bound.
Bike porn is both everything and nothing like you might imagine. For the Reverend, it’s a full-time job. The 33-year-old Portland resident, ordained by Seattle’s Church of Bicycle Jesus, spends a substantial part of his year on the road, peddling porn, and the off-season looking for next year’s batch of independent, cycle-centric, erotic films. The ones that eventually roll out on tour need only pass a single criterion: “If it inspires me to ride my bike or have sex, I think it’s good enough,” says the Rev.
Sano commenced his first-ever San Antonio Bike Porn event with a few words about the many pleasures of cycling, then burst into a stirring and unexpected song (“We’re bound together and the two of us just roll as one”).
A silent stop-motion called Cyclust kicked off the film programming, and its rainy-day palette and naturalistic girl-on-girl action modified my expectations for the evening. The even-shorter short that followed, Sperm, a clever black-and-white, culminated with the titular cell penetrating a bicycle gear. It wasn’t so weird to watch porn in public.
The “bound” element of the tour’s title became more pronounced in No No No Yes, wherein a boozing, scantily clad woman unlocked her bikefriend — a gentleman with a seat strapped to his back, handlebars to his neck — and proceeded to caress his parts. Velorotic, a non-narrative, vaguely neo-noir-ish short featured much of the same, only the objects of affection were actual bikes. You’ve Been a Bad Bike was a lighthearted erotic riff on Hostel-type torture porn. The strung-up victim? Take a guess.
Those in attendance seemed to have come fully prepared for bicycle-seat fellatio — only the final and most graphic film, Tour de Pants, made anyone shift in their seats. An all-girl gang-rape fantasy will do that. The cycling protagonists of Tour are racing for top prize, the Golden Panties, but it’s so hard not to get sidetracked. In one of the less racy diversions, a cyclist goes off course to choke the chicken. When he came to fruition, the SA crowd cheered. “Good for you!” one patron cried.
Sano made a point of noting that public porn-viewing, as a tradition, died out after the ’70s, and that events like this one help us define our community standards of obscenity. Asked about what measures he takes to ensure that his message isn’t marred by ethical failings — such as underage or coerced participants — he affirmed that he relies on his relationships with filmmakers to avoid trouble. Cycling has transformed his life, and Cycle Bound is scoring disciples. Morrighan Clinco jumped aboard the tour minivan in Tucson: “I’m a bikesexual, and I didn’t know until a few days ago.” •