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Porn in the woods.
August 3, 2005 1:01 PM   Subscribe

Porn in the woods. Did you, as a kid, find porn in the woods? I did, and I have noticed this is a worldwide phenomena. Why the porn in the woods? Where does the porn in the woods come from?

Yes, this is a serious question.
posted by mr.marx to Society & Culture (116 answers total) 82 users marked this as a favorite
 
Uh, privacy? Why else?
posted by agregoli at 1:02 PM on August 3, 2005


i did, indeed, find porn in the woods as a kid. in the ravine behind my grandparent's fields.
posted by quadrinary at 1:03 PM on August 3, 2005


It's left there by people who are done with it, dropped it in a hurry, or left it on purpose to come back to later. Folks who look at porn in the woods can't, for various reasons, do it at home.

Or they're really turned on by trees.
posted by Specklet at 1:06 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I once found some porn hidden in the bushes in a park behind my house. I think it's caused by other kids.
posted by delmoi at 1:09 PM on August 3, 2005


On two separate occasions I found full-length pornographic novels (not romance, but straight up porn) in the middle of the street outside an elementary school. Someone had to have planted them there - how could you lose two book within a couple of weeks in the same spot?

In the woods? That's because people can't take it home and hope to share the love by leaving it for you to find.
posted by dual_action at 1:09 PM on August 3, 2005


It's left there by people who are done with it, dropped it in a hurry, or left it on purpose to come back to later. Folks who look at porn in the woods can't, for various reasons, do it at home.

...which is why, when we found ours, I always assumed it had belonged to Craig's brother Dave. He was four years older.

Craig's sister got me high for the first time too. Ah, 1980.
posted by scratch at 1:10 PM on August 3, 2005


Back in junior high, a friend and I stumbled across a locked pirate treasure chest full of booty that belonged to his older teenaged brother in the woods. Being resourceful lads, we unscrewed the hinges and took our first steps into a larger world. Kids these days have it easy with teh Intarweb.
posted by keswick at 1:13 PM on August 3, 2005


I've found more than porn in the woods. While I was participating in an archaeological field school in Chicago, our site was in a forest preserve that was a prime cruising grounds. We found not only porn in the woods, but a 9" black rubber dildo.
posted by ursus_comiter at 1:14 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


How in the heck do you know that it's a "worldwide phenomenon"?
posted by yclipse at 1:16 PM on August 3, 2005


I've never found porn. There's a hilarious David Sedaris story about finding porn, but I can't remember the name of it. It's in either Naked or Me Talk Pretty One Day.
posted by peep at 1:17 PM on August 3, 2005


A friend of mine had a summer job on the grounds crew of a college in St. Paul. One day, he was working on some undeveloped land on the fringe of campus, and came across a little fort built in the woods. He saw a couple of early-adolescent kids looking anxiously at him from across the street, and assumed that it was their fort. So he nodded, gave them the thumbs-up to indicate that he wasn't going to do anything to it, and left.

The next day, he decided to give the kids a surprise, and stocked their fort up with Playboys and a 6-pack of 3.2 beer.
posted by COBRA! at 1:18 PM on August 3, 2005 [17 favorites]


Maybe I can help explain this phenomenom.

When I was in 4th grade or so, a kid in the neighborhood had lifted several dirty magazines from his dad's personal stash and the gang of us kids fought over them and then finally went out into the 'woods', the undeveloped area behind our neighborhood, and buried the stash near our fort where we would basically own them jointly and peruse them at our leisure.

This was in the days when porn was a difficult commodity for a young boy to attain. The kids these days have it easy.
posted by letterneversent at 1:19 PM on August 3, 2005


My husband and his friends found a cache of porn under an old stump in the woods behind his babysitter's house. It was apparently neighborhood, communal porn, there to be enjoyed by generations of local youngsters. If you're young and worried about your mom finding your stash, the woods seems like a good hiding place.
posted by junkbox at 1:20 PM on August 3, 2005


Weird. I didn't even notice the previous fort-related anecdote. Boys are the same the world over.
posted by letterneversent at 1:21 PM on August 3, 2005


Yes, I too have found porn in the woods. In more than one location.
posted by Pollomacho at 1:26 PM on August 3, 2005


Not an answer per se, but in support of your contention that this indeed a worldwide (or at least widespread) phenomenon, I give you the Scud Mountain Boys' "Penthouse In The Woods" (embedded WAV file). They use the word "archetype," for goodness sake.
posted by hwickline at 1:26 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


(I'm going to use the past tense here, because I think that kids these days aren't bothering to hide their porn outside when it's just easier to download it.)

I agree with the theory that it was stored outside because it was usually stolen/borrowed from an older person (brother, father, creepy uncle, whatever). We also ran across several boxes of magazines at the side of the road, which could be someone sharing their stash with the world (or could just be laziness).

However, storing porn outside does have potential downsides (besides the obvious weather-related issues). A friend in elementary school had his stash found by the family dog, which proceeded to rip it to shreds. Not only did my friend lose his porn, but his parents were quite upset with all the torns pages of nekkid ladies that blew all over the yard. Obviously he hadn't stored his porn deeply enough in the woods.
posted by flipper at 1:32 PM on August 3, 2005


Yes. A plastic grocery bag filled with Disneyland/world magazines, a dildo and lube. This was under a tree stump near a fairly well traveled hiking path. It still skeeves me out.
posted by Constant Reader at 1:36 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


My husband and his friends found a cache of porn under an old stump in the woods behind his babysitter's house.

(I swear I don't mean to be a jerk, that just made me chuckle. Some husbands could probably use a babysitter...)
posted by amro at 1:37 PM on August 3, 2005


To answer the last question: the porn in Jim's Woods near my friend Jim's house was put there by me and Jim. I forget where we found it, but we took it to the woods to look it over. When we were done with it we sealed it in a plastic bread bag with a wire twisty and stashed it in a hole in the bank of the creek. When we visited it again we found that (1) a creek bed is not a good place to keep valuables made of paper, and (2) a wire twisty does not seal a bag very well. It was destroyed badly enough that we threw it out.
posted by booth at 1:39 PM on August 3, 2005


COBRA!: Was the college St. Thomas, by any chance? (No, I didn't find it, but I went there.)
posted by GaelFC at 1:45 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


No, Hamline. But I bet there's lots of stuff stashed between the St. Thomas campus and the river.
posted by COBRA! at 1:48 PM on August 3, 2005


Very interesting answers this far. It hadn't even occured to me other kids might be responsible, since I've met many people who have found porn in the woods as kids, but none who have stashed it there themselves. I always figured it was some old guys getting off on jerking in the woods. If there even is such a fetish, I don't know.
posted by mr.marx at 1:48 PM on August 3, 2005


Some husbands could probably use a babysitter...

Ha! Mine as much as the next woman's, I'm sure. Obviously mister junkbox was quite a young lad when he found the porn; I don't think we've ever settled whether the porn's proximity to the babysitter's house was a coincidence, or the result of other kids staying there in the afternoons and leaving a stash nearby in the woods.
posted by junkbox at 1:53 PM on August 3, 2005


How in the heck do you know that it's a "worldwide phenomenon"?

Found some in the woods near the housing area when I was a kid in Germany.
posted by ereshkigal45 at 1:55 PM on August 3, 2005


When I lived in Michigan, there was this beautiful art installation created by an artist who'd found porn in the woods as a child. It really affected him--he credits it in part with a huge loss of innocence, and even goes so far as to claim the date of his discovery the end of his childhood and beginning of his adolescence. As an adult, he cuts up thousands of old porn magazines to create detailed, gorgeous collages. There's something unsettling about them even at the outset--and then when you read his artist statement and look very closely, it's disturbing and kind of wonderful. I wish I could remember the artist's name. I was also surprised by how many of the men at the installation had found porn--I'm a girl, and all I ever got was a couple of Hustlers left over from our house's previous residents.
posted by hamster at 2:00 PM on August 3, 2005 [3 favorites]


Manhood is unsettling.
posted by letterneversent at 2:02 PM on August 3, 2005 [4 favorites]


There was a very-lamely half-built log cabin in the woods near my house. I never found porn there, but I did once find half a dozen empty whipped-cream tubs. Looking back, I wonder if some really stupid kids misunderstood when they heard that they could get high off whipped cream, and sat and ate 6 tubs of the stuff.
posted by MrMoonPie at 2:08 PM on August 3, 2005 [4 favorites]


Not exactly in the woods (although it was outside), and not my idea of porn; but Constant Reader's story reminded me of when my brother and I followed the instructions in Big Secrets, locating Walt Disney's crypt in Forest Lawn. There was an open cardboard box nearby, which contained some objects: the most remarkable was a snapshot of a man, naked, from the rear; with a long feather coming out of his ass. As for actual porn found in the woods, when I was young, sure; but never intact -- partial pages, ripped from magazines, weather-damaged.
posted by Rash at 2:10 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


It was pretty common to find porn in the woods in Canada too. There was a small bush maybe a kilometer from my house. It's been developed now, but at the time it's where us kids went for porn, beer and our first adventures with the opposite sex. I've never deposited the porn but it wasn't uncommon at all to find a magazine near one of the communal firepits in the middle of this bush.

I would guess that most of it originated from a fathers stash. I know my dad had his porn stash cleverly concealed... beneath his bed, the top shelf of the closet, beneath the workbench and on top of the book case. My friends and I would raid his stash occasionally (which he must've noticed) and it'd pass between us concealed in gym bags or rolled up and placed down in our socks.
posted by substrate at 2:13 PM on August 3, 2005


When I was about 9, I came across porn in the woods... while walking with my Dad.

We were exploring the wooded campus around a health care facility. Don't remember why I was there, maybe we were killing time while my brother was getting checked out. We were climbing a hill, with a clearing at the top with a large boulder in the center.

My dad was up ahead, I remember seeing him take a large rock and place it atop the boulder, hiding something. Catching a glimpse between the boulder and the rock, I remember seeing garishly colored type on the telltale wrinkled strata of many pages having been soaked in the rain.

My dad said something offhand, and nonchalant, I don't remember what. We walked around a bit in silence. That was it. We continued our ramble back down the hill.

Strangely enough, I have no recollection if I knew it was porn at the time. While the memory of seeing is fixed in time (to the walk on the hill) the connection of the sight to the knowledge "that was porn" could have happened in the next instant, or years later. The making of this connection has no external event so I have no idea when in time it happened. In the meantime the sight and it's meaning have fused in my memory, so I cannot remember the experience as seeing something not-porn.

I sometimes imagine the experience from my father's point of view. It must have been embarrassing for him, and frustrating. The boulder was atop an empty clearing. His nine-year old son is right behind him. The one rock available was too small to be effective, it teetered atop the rounded boulder, threatening to fall off. I can imagine the sense of futility he felt, the shame of hiding, and therefore in some way owning, an object of the world he wished to hold at bay.
posted by sol at 2:20 PM on August 3, 2005 [3 favorites]


One of my favourite books, "Goats" by Mark Poirier, has porn in the woods.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 2:24 PM on August 3, 2005


Totally found porn in the woods, moldering Penthouses. There is probably a good sociological reason, touched on many times in this thread.

I would prefer to attribute it to some benevolent semi-supernatural source, however.
posted by Divine_Wino at 2:26 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


When I was 11 I lived on Clark Air Base in the Philippines. A friend and I discovered that the Stars & Stripes bookstore tossed out their old Playboys, Hustlers, Oui, etc in a dumpster. So we spent a couple of afternoons digging about 150 pounds of porn out of there. It was a chore carrying all those magazines to the bus stop, and while waiting for the bus we sorted through them and gave the extra copies to the Filipino groundskeepers that were waiting there. It was hilarious -- as many of them were on a $40/wk wage, the copies really made their day.

We stored the porn in an abandoned underground concrete transformer vault behind the neighborhood, all of the mags organized by title and issue. The only thing we did with them (especially at that young age) was look at the pics and take pride in our "library". Eventually the neighborhood kids got wind of it and it become a "library" in every sense of the word. The porn library operated for about two weeks. I think eventually one of the parents found out about it, because we went out there one day and the vault was empty.
posted by rolypolyman at 2:26 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


Yes! I found porn in the woods as a kid. My assumption is that some of it is put there to stash it; some was just left there after it was looked at; and other porn is trashed there after having been examined elsewhere, since putting it out with the garbage is risky.

Based on the responses here, I am now convinced that the odds of finding porn in the woods may even approach the odds of finding it stuffed under a motel mattress. Thoughts?
posted by Clyde Mnestra at 2:29 PM on August 3, 2005


I have never found porn in the woods, but I once witnessed the accidental opening of a large and unusual porn stash. I was working in a lab that used a mini-computer, a machine whose operator was an elderly, jovial sort of guy. One day, the ceiling of the computer room collapsed for some reason, and large chunks of plaster landed on the filing cabinets below. The cabinets and the operator's desk toppled over, their contents spilling out. And instead of the expected data tapes and code listings, we found hundreds, perhaps thousands of hardcore porn magazines, a dust-covered, thick carpet of them that now lay on the floor for everyone to see. The horny operator, and, as we suspected, his equally horny wife (who was working in the same department) had used the computer room for years as a storage place for their porn.
posted by elgilito at 2:33 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


I blame the Gideons.

Furthest afield: in woods 250 miles from home.

Ya think this is one of the unconscious motivations behind geocaching?
posted by NortonDC at 2:35 PM on August 3, 2005


We used to find porn all the time in the woods - As I'm more urban these days, I never stumble across any, but a funny vestige of my 12 year old porn-obsessed self remains whenever I come across the water-damaged remains of a magazine on the street and unconsciously look twice just to make sure it isn't porn. (I of course have no idea what I'd do if it ever turned out to be porn.)
posted by jalexei at 2:48 PM on August 3, 2005


I found a whole box of porn found in an empty lot one morning while walking my paper route. My hormonally infused self took it as a sign from God. Before reading this thread I had no idea God was sending so many messages to so many troubled children. Yay God!
posted by Suck Poppet at 2:55 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


We didn't have the woods -- I grew up in Hollywood.

Me and my friends found porn behind the dumpster -- gross, hairy, Mexican pornography. We looked at it in amazement, more for the, "we shouldn't have this" then anything else and then burned it so no one would think *we* left it there.

(Of course, my dad worked in the porn industry at the time and I had a rack of 16mm in my dining room that made the porn we found look like Disney. But still, it was non-parent mandated porn! It was taboo!)
posted by Gucky at 3:11 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


I grew up in what is now Suburbia USA but what was then The Sticks. One or two subdivisions surrounded by undeveloped woodland and, yes, my first glimpse of a naked woman (being impaled by the empire state building) came from a porn mag found in the woods.

I always assumed this happened a lot because kids hid their pornography in the woods so their parents would not find it.
posted by absalom at 3:17 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


When I was 11 I would jack off in the woods with the neighborhood slut next door, never much porn though.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 3:26 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


I remember finding a 'lesbian' mag on my way home from grade school in a ditch. The women were shaved and for a few years I was under the impression that women had no pubic hair. So porn can be a bad instructor, to say the least.

On a related note. When I was in my early 20's my roomate was a guy who had been buying magazines for years, with his mothers permission, and they amounted to several boxes. He decided one day to get rid of most of them. We went to the local dump where you back your truck up to this cliff and toss your garbage over into the fill which is about 15' below. So we start throwing all these magazines over and we are throwing them, basically one at a time, giving them one last look, and they're blowing all over the landfill. Other men start noticing what were doing and we were suddenly surrounded by guys asking us if they could have them. They were so happy, they even went into the fill to collect the ones we'd thrown. I felt like Santa Claus.
posted by joseppi7 at 3:32 PM on August 3, 2005 [7 favorites]


"No Tim, I will not get you porn. You can get it from railway sidings like everyone else..."
"But I'm an adult! I'm supposed to leave it there!"


I never found porn in the woods, due to living in suburban Los Angeles. I did, however, find naked tranvestite polaroids outside a high school bus stop.

I really should've kept those...
posted by Katemonkey at 3:47 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


Hell yes, we found porn in the woods. In two places, one in a hollow just off of where the golf course had a hole in the fence to retrieve balls hit out of bounds, the other in a weird makeshift "fort" (made out of stove doors and random sheet metal propped on a fallen tree). Both had a selection that went from normal (Playboy) to hardcore (Oui) to fetish (Juggs, Legshow).
And I know that when the old magazines started to deteriorate, we got more from Tom's dad's stash.
But now, instead of a fort, the kids have a mattress back there. My girlfriend calls it a "felony bed."
posted by klangklangston at 4:30 PM on August 3, 2005


While out cycling with some cretinous acquaintences we had stumbled upon some discarded porn in a tree however it wasn't in the woods per se, more like the forest-like trimmings surrounding the city's industrial estate.

It was like - ooh, porn! Erm, lets go break something.
posted by rc55 at 4:38 PM on August 3, 2005


i recall a plane trip to Hawaii where some businessman had left a penthouse (or was it hustler?) sitting in the magazine pocket of my sister's seat.

suprisingly enough I don't recall my mother taking it away from us, but then again, a year or so before i was born she was training to be a sex counselor, so maybe she knew best.
posted by fishfucker at 4:49 PM on August 3, 2005


I have both found and left porn in the woods. It's a grand tradition, though with the Intarweb, I can't believe the amount of printed porn is anything like what it was in the early 70's.
posted by tommasz at 4:50 PM on August 3, 2005


I found porn in the woods, too.

What with all the other reports of same, I'm starting to think I've been shirking my duty as an adult. I shall have to buy up a rack of porn and distribute it throughout the woods this weekend.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:55 PM on August 3, 2005


I suppose with wifi and a laptop you can find porn in many places.
posted by buzzman at 5:03 PM on August 3, 2005


I found a Playboy fold out under a bush in my neighborhood when I was a kid. The Playmates name was Ellen Michaels - apparently it made an impression.
posted by Carbolic at 5:59 PM on August 3, 2005


Growing up in the city, I never found porn in the woods. I never even found enough trees in one place to constitute a "woods."

However, along the lines of "finding porn and growing up thinking that women don't have any pubes," the street and even the elementary school yard was so littered with condoms and crack viles (y'know, with the color coded caps) that I occasionally had moments of wonder as to how they fit a condom in that tiny little container. It didn't take very long to realize that while the detritus was related, neither was a container for the other.

Sex education and drug prevention education were pretty much a waste of time considering that we learned most of the course content just by glancing down alleyways on our way home from school.

I hear stories of people's childhoods that involve finding porn in the woods, setting stuff on fire, destroying abandoned cars, and blowing things up and think to myself that there must be something to growing up in the suburbs or a rural area. There wasn't as much room for us to get away with that kind of mischief in the city. Many more neighbors and the cops tend to show up a little quicker.
posted by Jon-o at 6:02 PM on August 3, 2005


Totally found porn in the woods, usually alongside empty beer cans and ashes from a small fire. Figured it was kids swiping from their parents. There was also a small stash in the boys room of my elementary school in the ceiling above the urinals. Good times.
posted by plinth at 6:34 PM on August 3, 2005


...was so littered with condoms...

I have to admit that, having seen plenty of used condoms before ever seeing one in its package, the first thing I blurted out (upon being shown one by a buddy) was "How the hell do they get them in there?"

That question became a taunt I was subjected to for some 6 years or so...
posted by jalexei at 6:36 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


I have found porn in the woods. I have also found porn in barns for what I assume is the same reason. If you're a kid and you live in the country, or maybe even the suburbs, keeping your stash outside someplace is a good way to keep it private [from your parents at least, and siblings] and give you time to peruse it at leisure without being disturbed.
posted by jessamyn at 6:50 PM on August 3, 2005


Did you, as a kid, film porn in the woods?

Swear to god that's how I read it, and was extremely jealous.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:11 PM on August 3, 2005


When I was a kid, I was perusing the stacks at my local library. I pulled down one book (was it the reference section?) and found a porn magazine in it.

That got checked out.

My mom was impressed at how often I asked to be taken to the library after that. Unfortunately, like a Vegas jackpot, the thrill of porn in the library book was not repeated.

Nevertheless, that was the start of a life long love of books. (Libraries are made from dead trees...and trees are the stuff of woods...so, this counts as porn in the woods, right?)
posted by extrabox at 7:19 PM on August 3, 2005


Never in the woods. But a friend and I did find a briefcase in a back alley in Pittsburgh, in a pile with a nice suit and whanot. We spent a few days in his father's kitchen, playing with the locks and trying to jimmy it open.

Eventually it opens - the code was 987, I think. That took a while, starting from 0.

Inside was a six-inch sheaf of manila folders and magazines, and a few hundred polaroid pictures of an enormous sex party. A good time, it seems, had been had by all. We, being 11, were delighted. We were also bad at keeping secrets, so the offending briefcase disappeared within a week or so.

I think it was even returned; some contact information led to the guy, who explained that his car had been stolen the week earlier. Presumably the thief didn't need the evidence...
posted by metaculpa at 7:33 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


I used to find all kinds of hidden porn around the Boy Scout camp. Once, we found a copy of Hustler Letters--you know, all the dirty stories that are supposedly true? Some guy offered to buy it for three dollars, but we figured out if you tore the pages out and sold them for 25cents each, you could earn more. We made enough for ice cream at the trading post.

Also (completely off-topic), my great grandfather was a medical photographer who took all kinds of pictures for governmental studies. When we were kids, we found all of his pictures in the attic, I'm talking really graphic pictures of naked men and women with tumors and amputations and skin disorders. People with holes in their faces and oversized swollen genitalia. Really gross stuff. I used to take neighborhood kids up to the attic and let them look at them. Mind you, this also all took place in a funeral home. This, for many of you, explains a lot about me.
posted by ColdChef at 7:37 PM on August 3, 2005 [14 favorites]


I grew up near a freeway overpass in Queens. We went down there pretty often on our bikes to mess around. The one time that we found some porn down there, we also found a guy behind one of the freeway pillars with a gun. I dropped my bike and ran, and my friend took off on his bike without looking back (nice friend). I hiked back up the hill and found my dad racing down the street in the car, looking for me.

We didn't spend alot of time looking for porn after that.
posted by stamen at 7:57 PM on August 3, 2005


Yep - I found my first porn in a fort in the woods. the woods near my house were littered with forts, and each had porn in them. I would sneak out and steal the magazines from them.

This was around 6th grade, and it was a big awakening for me. Porn was like a trasure hunt. I found porn under my dads bed, at friends houses, and later, when I had a job, behind the seats of trucks.

I kind of developed a problem with it, until I got a girlfriend, then later, a wife.

I remember vividly this one girl in hustler, and I remember she was the most beautiful girl I had ever seen. To this day, I think she shaped my idea of beautiful... Haven't tracked that one down yet...

aaah good times...
posted by quibx at 8:02 PM on August 3, 2005


When I was in the 8th & 9th grade, I was a porn dealer.

I aquired all the Playboys from about 1985 to 1996. Double issues of quite a few of them. I'd just keep about five of them in my backpack when I went to school, selling them and giving them away during lunch.

I later passed the remaining library over to my younger brother.
posted by blasdelf at 8:22 PM on August 3, 2005


Porn in the woods is a worldwide phenomenon.
In sixth grade, I took my first trip to Versailles, (also my first trip to France) with members of my French class. As the rest of my classmates explored the hall of mirrors and looked at god-knows-what-else, my friend and I wandered through the gardens. It was raining, so nobody else was there, and we were probably looking to get into trouble. At the far end of the garden, next to a tree on the far side of the reflecting pool, we discovered a small soaking wet hardcore porn magazine. We flipped through it, put it back and wandered back to the group.
I’m sure you can all come up with a joke about the French national treasures, and porn.
posted by geryon at 8:33 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


We had tame communal porn in and around our fort which was located in a wooded (undeveloped) area at the end of our street. But, once, while delivering newspapers on my route, I came across a mangled copy of Hot Splits or maybe it was Hot Slits, on the edge of the street near a wooded area.

In any case, the macro (close-up) shots of the various female genitalia blew my sheltered 11 year old mind. I actually tossed the magazine back on to the ground (In disgust!) before deciding that I had better bring it back to the fort for closer inspection. It was gone the next day. No clue where it went but it was probably for the best. Ah, Childhood...
posted by shoepal at 8:36 PM on August 3, 2005


I was introduced to Rodox hardcore at age 9 by this very phenomenon, in the suburbs of Canberra, Australia. I didn't know exactly what they were doing in those pictures, but it looked kind of fun by their expressions.

It's bizarre thinking about it as a late 20th century rite of passage for young males - great question just for the resulting anecdotes and nostalgia of simpler times :)
posted by elphTeq at 8:39 PM on August 3, 2005


Yes. On a number of occassions. Once, finding individual pages and scraps spread all over an out of the way wooded area. The other time, benefitting from other kids' woods porn -- was walking near an area once where a bunch of kids were looking at porn. I was on a sidewalk a little ways off, but they were loud and it was obvious what they were doing (talking about big cocks and such).

I told my friend and we doubled back a little bit later when it was clear and raided their stash. No more than five minutes later, walking by the area, we heard from the woods screams of "WHERE THE HELL IS IT?" and "WTF?" We smiled, and quickly moved the hell away from that area (we were outnumbered, and younger than the other kids). The friend stashed the porn in his place until he got busted and lost it all.

Then he tried to steal a mag from a store and got busted.

Soon after that, we weren't friends anymore (for unrelated matters).
posted by mkn at 8:40 PM on August 3, 2005


In suburban Southern California (the OC), there was indeed porn in the woods. "The woods" consisted of a small secluded county park about a mile from my house. It was down in a ravine and the houses around it were blocked by thick trees. It was definitely a place for shifty kids to smoke out and read porn.

In sixth grade a friend was there searching around and found a tall stack of Playboys in a tree fort in the park. It was pretty easy to find, in an obvious tree and an obvious fort, with the stack right in the middle of the floor. It was communally used, and we would head up to the fort to look at the pictures if we didn't see anyone else around.

I'd occasionally look at playboys back then until one day my friend and I were talking about it, joking about how funny the women's faces looked and sort of pantomiming the movements. We were in my driveway doing this, goofing around with the garage door open and it wasn't until I was sort of in the middle of it that I noticed my mom was doing laundry, right there at the back of the garage and had probably seen and heard everything.

I didn't look at porn in the woods after that.
posted by mathowie at 8:46 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


Found:
A wet cardboard box of vintage playboy, on the side of a road.
A neat stack of penthouse under a bridge, in the woods.
A strange new source of communion with my fellow man, today.
posted by 31d1 at 8:49 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


well, there was porn in the empty lot next to my friend's house. i think he put it there, after he stole it from his grandpa.
posted by Hackworth at 9:00 PM on August 3, 2005


Not only IN the woods but BURIED in the woods. I built a fairly extensive treehouse behind my parents house. One project included digging a drainage ditch along the soggy path to the site. The excavation exposed a super-8 film entitled "Shower Head". I haven't been right since.
posted by Oddly at 9:06 PM on August 3, 2005


When I was in 3rd grade or so, some friends and I found several boxes of discarded porn mags (Cherry, Hustler, etc) in a dumpster at our apartment complex. We stashed them in our hideout in a nearby creekbed. As noted above, creekbeds make lousy porn hiding places, and after a particularly bad storm, all was lost, though we did find ripped up bits of pages floating around in the creek for the next few days.
posted by sad_otter at 9:22 PM on August 3, 2005


Yep, found porn in the woods. Twice, I think. Once in a water drain pipe, and I believe another time in woods-woods.

I can't decide whether a Santa Claus or Easter Bunny joke would be more appropriate here, based on the sheer number of people who've experienced this.
posted by socratic at 9:22 PM on August 3, 2005


I found a mildewed old copy of Playboy in the woods once. There were a lot of kids in my neighborhood, so I assume one of the teenagers hid it there and forgot about it.
posted by me3dia at 9:37 PM on August 3, 2005


How about gay porn found on a dusty creek ravine in the middle of a mid-sized New Brunswick city on the way home from school?

I shit you not.

Brock. He’s built” read the headline alongside photos of a puffy, poorly-hung blond bodybuilder squinting in bright poolside sunlight.

It made my year.
posted by joeclark at 10:19 PM on August 3, 2005


I found porn in the woods as a child. Growing up in the woods this actually occurred on a number of occasions. When I got older I worked for the Forest Service for a number of years as a firefighter. One summer I was assisting a fire prevention officer for a while. He told me all the places he had found porn and all the places he had masturbated to said porn. He was fond of saying "pile of fuck books" (his words not mine), and said he once found a whole shed full. Said it took him four trips after work to get them all. He was obsessed with these type of finds. I suspect he may well have been responsible for others finds. In fact I think many of my fellow employees may have been. On a side note he also chewed tobacco without spitting and smoked all day long while insisting that the windows to the truck, his truck, stay closed.
posted by iwouldificould at 10:41 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


Yep, found some in the ravine behind my place when I was 10 or 11. It was seriously icky gay porn, and I'm straight. I looked at it and it didn't turn me gay.

(when I say icky, I'm talking about defecation, fisting, etc. I don't really have a problem with people looking at gay porn if that's what they want)
posted by Kickstart70 at 10:46 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


Porn in the woods = same reason people fuck in the woods. No private place of their own to get off, so they head outdoors. You never fucked in the woods when you were a teenager? Hell. Doesn't even sound like you ever stashed a magazine in the bushes out back. You must have had your own in-law residence as a kid :)

Now, above and beyond porn, if you hike and live in the Bay Area you probably have stories about happening upon men fucking in the woods. Nothing against gays. I just haven't seen it happen with a hetero couple/group - nor heard from anyone else who has. But I have come across men in the woods. Oh yes. I have come across men in the woods.
posted by scarabic at 11:25 PM on August 3, 2005 [1 favorite]


A friend of mine says: "The answer to the question is 'otherwise the circlejerk during the huntin' trips would be gay.' If I had a mefi account, I would offer them that insight."

And to answer the question myself, yes. I found a Hustler in the woods near the grocery store when I was about 12/13, and also the homemade kind - two nude polaroids of a couple in the mud near my bus stop (right next to the woods). I don't know why it was abandoned there. I used to think up stories for the polaroids though. Like, that maybe they broke up and one of them threw the pics out the car window as they tore down the street in a rage....
posted by Melinika at 11:25 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


Some buddies and I found some porn down by the railroad tracks when I was about eleven. Railroad ties are made of wood, right?
posted by kindall at 11:30 PM on August 3, 2005


♫ If you go down to the woods today, you're in for a big surprise..♫
posted by peacay at 11:58 PM on August 3, 2005 [2 favorites]


I was exploring an abondoned cement plant, I found a space sheltered under a slab that was stuffed full of an amazing assortment of womens underwear hundreds of bras panties and girdles stolen from clothes lines all over Fremont County Colorado. The porn was Sears catalogs. I've found porn in Big Sur Ca. also.
posted by hortense at 12:03 AM on August 4, 2005 [2 favorites]


Once, in a semi-abandoned homeless squat in the southern East Bay, I came across a collection of TV Guides dating back over 20 years. I took one with me and laminated a few pages, which are now over 30 years old. WTF? I have no idea.
posted by scarabic at 1:49 AM on August 4, 2005 [1 favorite]


I wrote a bit about this about 3 years back....
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:53 AM on August 4, 2005


Count me in. Like others, I found the odd tattered pages here and there in the woods around Forest Hills Cemetery in Malden, MA. Mostly garish glossy pictures of screwing, blow jobs, etc, but on one occasion, black porn! (MA is a pretty white state). I'll never forget one of the shots from that one. It had a grimacing mustachioed guy hitting it from the back, with a quote superimposed in pink: "Damn bitch, you so tight". I was 11 or so and experienced what I guess you could call the Simpsons reaction: "Oooooh, Gross!" "Yet strangely compelling..."
posted by Scoo at 4:38 AM on August 4, 2005 [1 favorite]


Yup. Me too. Out back of our house, when I was about 7 or 8, was a big yard full of industrial scrap - old boilers, railcar chassis, etc. We weren't supposed to play in there, which meant, of course, that we often did. Plenty of porn was found, though at that age it was more curious than titilating. The yard was surrounded by woods, so I suppose this counts.

Years later, hiking on the moors in Yorkshire, I stumbled over a blow-up doll protruding from some undergrowth. Which was a little odd.
posted by normy at 5:43 AM on August 4, 2005 [1 favorite]


Me too, stacks of them in the gully that we used to cut through on the way home from grade school. I had always assumed (though I haven't thought of it for years) that they were left there by gross older men.

Of course it makes sense that other kids would have stashed them.
posted by Cuke at 6:25 AM on August 4, 2005


Yeah, it is a worldwide phenomenon, I found some near our (illegal) camp site in Portugal once, and brought it back, saying something like "Hey, look guys, it IS a worldwide phenomenon". The porn was kicking around the camp for a coulpla days when the cops arrived, as they did periodically, to move us on. One particularly obnoxious cop found this stuff, immediately blamed it on me, declared I was "an enemy of the Portuguese people" and threatened to have me deported. All wind and piss, but he did draw a gun on me on another occasion.
posted by Joeforking at 6:27 AM on August 4, 2005


Add another yes vote: I found a giant stash in a wood fort in a small undeveloped area behind a suburban subdivision in St. Louis in probably 1984. Get this: it was in an Atari box to protect it from the weather! Definitely the work of older kids in the neighborhood.
posted by Mid at 6:46 AM on August 4, 2005 [1 favorite]


Once in a water drain pipe

Yeah, growing up in El Paso, TX we didn't have any "woods" per se, but there were these drainage ditches that would run pretty much the length of our side of town. Like secret back alleys that sometimes ran behind developed areas, and sometimes ran through just undeveloped no-mans-land. I found porn just off the side of the drainage ditches, and sometimes in them. Drainage ditch porn is more dried out and sandy than mildewey.

But then, I've also found woodsporn in the suburbs of Chicago and in Austin TX. Hardcore underground swinger mags, and then a boatload of Playboys, respectively.
posted by 23skidoo at 8:55 AM on August 4, 2005


I have come across men in the woods. Oh yes. I have come across men in the woods.

Bukkake?
posted by five fresh fish at 2:03 PM on August 4, 2005


The only porn-fining experience I've had was when I was walking around after school with my friends and there were bits of pron magazines scotch taped all over the place. A few hundred yards with every foot or so having some peice of anatomy on it. We laughed so much.... on of the most bizzare things ever and none of it had been there at lunch.
posted by Suparnova at 2:48 PM on August 4, 2005


I first found Porn in a trash can along the route of my paper route and it changed my perspective on life. So I would agree with some of the comments above.
posted by zudfunck at 3:18 PM on August 4, 2005


Yep, sure did. Whenever we found it in the woods though it was always worse for the wear from the elements.

Right now I'm trying to imagine what a porn-viewing session was like for the person who would leave these behind for us to find. ("Walden; Or, Life in the Woods" by Henry David Thoreau. Includes newly discovered notes on Thoreau's masturbation activities on the banks of Walden Pond)
posted by SawBeck at 6:03 PM on August 4, 2005


I found porn in the woods, and every guy I've ever asked has also found porn in the woods. At least all the guys who grew up near some woods. Some girls too. I've never met any adults who have admitting to stashing their porn in the woods though.

The woods by my house were not very big, and we knew pretty much every kid who played in them, and I'm pretty sure none of those guys stole the porn from their dads and stashed it in the woods. They would've bragged about it for sure.

I remember being all pre-pubescent and being totally thrilled to find such contraband. It was awesome, and I'm still very, very thankful to the pervert who left it there for us! You opened my eyes, my friend, to the wonderful world of naked ladies.

Now that I think about it though... Do you think there was some creepy old dude who planted the porn and hid off somewhere with binoculars watching a bunch of 8-12-year-olds discovering his stash? Ew.
posted by elvissinatra at 3:08 PM on August 5, 2005 [1 favorite]


Hey, I did too.
Never once thought about it as odd until now.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:16 PM on August 5, 2005


Sure I found porn in the woods as a kid. But there were teenagers who build underground forts in the woods near the school I went to, so we knew its origin.
posted by terrapin at 6:00 PM on August 5, 2005


"Porn in the Woods" would make a cool band name.
posted by terrapin at 6:01 PM on August 5, 2005


As a freshman in high school me and a buddy used to walk by a smashed VCR tape in a small stream near the woods by his house. For many months we wondered about it, commenting on it every time we passed by it, talking about how it was probably a discarded government tape with top secret UFO footage. I think we really believed that's what it was too, because we were nerds and we weren't too bright. The first time we saw it was probably around the end of summer, and we would continue to run by it occasionally throughout the fall, but this is up north, so once winter hit the ground was covered for many months. Come April, when all the snow disappeared, we came across it, still there in the same spot, looking much the same after being frozen in the stream all winter. We had forgotten about it and were impressed that the tape was still there after so much time. More convinced of a government cover-up than ever we started talking about how the information on the actual tape might be salvageable, despite the broken case and weather damage. So we scooped it up and took it back to the house, where we spent the whole afternoon untangling the film, polishing the mud and dried dirt off of every individual frame and putting the tape into another VCR cassette.

I suppose the theme of the thread kind of takes the punch line out of the story, but we put it in the VCR and needless to say it wasn't a UFO cover-up tape, just the first porno (or ruined bits of one) I ever saw; Ron Jeremy I believe. i remember us feeling rather triumphant about it, as if we had managed to rescue and resuscitate a kid who had been drowning in a lake. After awhile though my friend got paranoid that his mom might discover it in his room, so he took it out back and chucked it deep into the woods. I think a year or two later we happened by it back there, broken, looking much like it did originally.

They moved out eventually, so I'm sure the same cycle has repeated itself two or three times since then with the same tape.
posted by dgaicun at 1:39 AM on August 6, 2005 [1 favorite]


I did, once... Never thought it was so common, just thought it was my lucky day.
posted by hypersloth at 5:51 PM on August 7, 2005


I found porn in the woods, and I grew up in Darwin, Australia.
posted by JPowers at 2:01 AM on August 10, 2005


I've never found straight-up porn in the woods, but I have found two things that some reasonably close. once, on a hike around my house, I found a discarded box for a huge, spikey dildo under a bridge. then later, I was searching the mountains a few towns over for the ruins of a haunted mansion called corpsewood and found both the ruins and a catalog of gay porn videos.
posted by mcsweetie at 6:07 AM on August 10, 2005


This has become one of my favorite MetaFilter threads of all time.
posted by ColdChef at 7:14 PM on August 11, 2005


Wow, this thread is still open? I just went for a walk through the woods where I work and found somebodies stash. At least the top few I could see were all newish and in good shape. The industrious owners used a plastic 5 gallon pail to protect it from the elements. I was going to take the bucket to work and throw it out until I saw the stash. Instead I'm an irresponsible adult, I closed it and left it.
posted by substrate at 2:20 PM on October 16, 2005


5th grade Catholic Church dumpster.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:59 PM on December 5, 2005 [1 favorite]


A WorldWide Phenonomem? I recently found a rolled up jerk-book in a drainpipe high on a concrete wall on Lamma Island here in Hong Kong.

Japanese Schoolgirls, I seem to recall.
posted by DickStock at 6:18 PM on January 7, 2006


Amazing. Do you all really not know that porn grows on trees?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 7:56 AM on January 19, 2006


I too found porn in the woods by my house as a kid - I remember a naked lady swimming underwater and there was a guy in a frogman suit with an underwater camera filming her. I always assumed it was left there by a creepy guy. This was the first of many wonderful, often difficult-to-make-out porno finds I stumbled across there, including one that had a lady with three breasts!

I eventually figured out I could store these finds in a very thick cardboard tube which I stored under our back deck. Eventually, my father said found them, put them in the garbage, and said, "I think there's something of yours in the garbage" or whatever. I claimed ignorance, and can still remember looking at that tube sticking out of the trash and feeling so sad.
posted by stinkycheese at 9:22 AM on January 19, 2006


I am apparently the only person on earth who has never found porn in the woods.

Yet.
posted by unSane at 10:16 PM on April 14, 2006


If I'm not mistaken, one of the versions of the Viz Profanisaurus coins a term for porn found in the woods: Grumble.

In my experience (UK), torn up scraps of 'jazz' were common place in woods and hedgerows. As 12 year olds we were as tuned to finding grumble as pigs are with truffles.
posted by NailsTheCat at 7:34 PM on May 1, 2006


Found it on two seperate occasions. Both in a dry creek bed in very thick woods behind my house. One, a strange Japanese magazine, was very carefully wrapped in a bag and I still remember had a price tag of $45. The other was a moldy Hustler that probably had been passed around the neighborhood kids for ages. We tore the pictures out and put them on trees along the path as a gallery of woods-porn.
posted by rabbitsnake at 5:53 PM on May 2, 2006 [1 favorite]


No mr.marx, I found porn in the quarry (grustag), which was next to the woods. Exeption that proves the rule?
posted by dabitch at 3:49 PM on May 7, 2006


First porn I saw was a freind's dad's stash. Friend was 4 years older. I didn't care for the porn much, except I liked boobies (and still do, although I'm gay).

However, when I was a kid, my dad used to hang out at a friend's bodyshop. The bathroom there was papered with Playboy centerfolds. Some beautiful ladies, for sure. This was in the older times, when playmates still looked like humans.
posted by Goofyy at 12:25 AM on May 8, 2006 [1 favorite]


Oops, forgot to say, I have indeed found porn in the woods. Sadly, no gay porn.
posted by Goofyy at 12:25 AM on May 8, 2006 [1 favorite]


Spent a lot of time in the woods as a kid; never found porn. Some friends once found a stash you could measure in bushels, concealed in a run-down barn on school property (the middle school was newly built and I believe the stash predated it).

What I have found in the woods is: A teal dress, a black bra, panties, and an empty condom wrapper, all at the same location. 'Well,' I said to myself, 'I think it's pretty clear what went on here.' And then had second thoughts, 'cause if she arrived in the clothes, what did she leave in? It was not a large forest, and surrounded on all sides with suburbia ...
posted by eritain at 7:38 PM on June 2, 2006 [1 favorite]


What did she leave in?

A hurry, it would seem.
posted by emelenjr at 8:37 AM on June 11, 2006 [3 favorites]


There's a good comic book about this.
posted by ITheCosmos at 3:24 PM on June 20, 2006


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