Jan 2012 23

by Darrah de jour

Lux Alptraum is the 29-year old editor of pop culture giant Gawker Media’s sister site Fleshbot — the web’s North Star of sexuality and adult entertainment. It garners 1 million uniques a month. Given that Fleshbot is edited by a woman, there’s a delectable juxtaposition of raucous imagery meets female-approved editorial. So when Alptraum says, of porn star Sarah Vandella, “[She] is so sweet and sassy that you just want to c*** all over her face,” there’s a simultaneous squirm and awe that goes on as a woman. Did a chick just say that about another chick? Yup, folks, she did. So, in an era where prostitutes have publicists, and football stars do PSA’s about a woman’s right to choose, we couldn’t help but wonder: is Lux just a pliable paper femme molded by the boy’s club she inhabits? Or, is she our new Linda Carter? Let’s get down and dirty with this Lower East Side babe and find out!

Darrah de jour: You won my heart with those doe eyes when I read 21 Questions With…in New York magazine. Plus, you like Hello Kitty. I’m in love already. What is the compliment that you receive most often from men?

Lux Alptraum: I don’t know! I’m apparently really good in bed.

Ddj: So, you’re a 20-something successful single living in NYC. What’s different about your experience versus Carrie Bradshaw’s in Sex and the City?

LA: [Laughs.] My apartment is a lot more expensive than hers is. I write more than one column a week. I don’t have anywhere near as many shoes as she does. And I live on the Lower East Side, not Uptown. I think I dress better, too. I’ve always felt more like a Samantha, as trite as that is to compare yourself to a character on Sex and the City, but I think Carrie is driven to find something serious, whereas Samantha is just looking to find something that works.

Ddj: Back in 2007, you began your blog Boinkology — the convergence of culture and sex from your unique P.O.V. You attained a great following from that. Did Gawker discover your blog and then reign you in to be editor of Fleshbot?

LA: Kind of. I showed off my writing on Boinkology, which is kind of how Gawker found me. But it was also through friends that worked there and they connected me. When they needed a fill-in, they called me in and then they kept me on.

Ddj: Did you have any hesitance before stepping on board, because of the graphic nature of what you’d be looking at each day?

LA: No. I’ve always been in adult content prior to this.

Ddj: You host the Fleshbot Awards. Tell me about that?

LA: The Fleshbot Awards are the only awards show for sexy pop culture. We’ve done it twice now and they’ve been a success each time. The awards break down into two categories: we have culture awards where we award things like sexiest movie, sexiest fashion, sexiest TV show, sexiest art. We’ve had everyone from Alan Cumming to Molly Crabapple in the culture awards. We also recognize crossover stars. Last year’s mainstream to porn one was Levi Johnston and porn to mainstream was Sasha Grey. This year, Chyna, who went from being a wrestler to being a Vivid movie star was our mainstream to porn crossover and Joanna Angel was our porn to mainstream. The award show is about recognizing people who are doing really awesome sexy stuff that promotes positive ideas about sexuality, celebrates the human body, celebrates sex. We also have really awesome performances. It’s about celebrating everybody – trans people, gay people, straight people, of all different backgrounds. It’s a one of a kind event.

Ddj: I read somewhere that you used to be a roller-derby girl. Tell me about that?

LA: I was. For three and a half years. I got involved with Gotham Girls in 2004 when they were just starting out. I didn’t know how to skate, I learned to skate to play roller derby. It was interesting too, because when I joined it was really rough and tumble and loose, and roller derby itself was very punk rock. It’s still punk rock but back then people were still figuring out what the sport was going to be. It’s gotten dramatically more athletic and more professionalized. People got rid of the silly costumes and…train hard and take it really seriously — which I think is awesome. What started off as this ‘let’s get drunk and hit each other’ type thing has become a serious sport.

Ddj: Riot Grrrl turns Lilith Fair?

LA: Yeah, yeah. More like being a garage band to getting really, really serious about your music.

Ddj: What was the name of your team?

LA: Queens of Pain.

Ddj: You wrote an amusing yet very useful guide to casual sex called, Booty Call Like A Boss. I consider it the Thomas Guide of booty calls, meets Emily Post, ahem. What is the most common and fatal mistake made by men and women when trying to ascertain a F.W.B. type relationship?

LA: Not being upfront and communicating what you want. And that’s not just about casual sex, that’s with all sorts of relationships. But, I think a lot of times, people are too scared to say what they want because ‘what if I say that and it’s not what the other person wants?’ Or they are not sure what they want or they’re worried about offending the other person. So they keep going and hoping it will work out the way they want. I’m guilty of that too. On the flip side, let’s say you want to be in a relationship and you don’t communicate that because the person has explicitly said they don’t want that and you keep going hoping it will turn into something else. Having ridiculous expectations and not communicating. You can’t hold regret. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with casual sex obviously, but there’s something wrong with having casual sex when that’s not what you really want. It’s just damaging and you’re doing yourself a disservice and setting yourself up to fail by entering into a situation where you want something completely different than what you’re communicating you want. It’s entirely possible that the person will end up being your boyfriend or girlfriend, but it’s entirely possible they won’t. I want to go on the record as saying that serious relationships can come out of casual sex. You can have sex on the first date and end up marrying them. I’m not trying to slut shame.

Ddj: In 2011, Slate published an article called “Sex is cheap: Why young men have the upper hand in bed, even when they’re failing in life.” This bold piece, written by a man, asserts that partly because of porn, “the market ‘price’ of sex is currently very low….Porn gives men additional sexual options — more supply for his elevated demand — it takes some measure of price control away from women.” What do you think about the so-called price of sex? Do women really have less power because men have more access to porn now?

LA: There are so many things that baffle me there. Number one, I don’t know why anybody would watch porn rather than have sex. The whole “price of sex” thing bothers me because it bothers me to see women set up as gatekeepers. I often feel like, in my relationships, the dudes are the gatekeepers. I have a way higher sex drive than any guy I’ve ever dated. It’s weird, this idea of women using sex to get security or stability or a relationship. Other than for reproduction, I don’t think people should use sex to achieve some larger goal. Even the idea of premarital sex. It’s only premarital sex if you intend on getting married.

Ddj: You wrote a story about Deep Throat star Linda Lovelace for The Atlantic recently. You make a comparison between Lovelace and porn star-turned-actress Sasha Grey. What do you see as the bind between the two ex-adult performers?

LA: Grey’s not been particularly enthusiastic about the adult industry since she started focusing more heavily on her mainstream career. She’s not involved with any adult industry stuff and I feel like she’s gone on the record as saying she wants to get away from porn. She’s not the adult industry boost that once she was.

Ddj: Is there a general distaste for Grey in the adult industry?

LA: I can’t speak to what other people feel, but she went on the record numerous times saying that she wasn’t going to be like Jenna Jameson and she wasn’t trying to get out of the industry and that she loves her work and then she pretty much turned her back on it. She comes across as a bit of a hypocrite.

Ddj: Two Lovelace biopics are underway, one with Amanda Seyfried and one with Lindsay Lohan’s replacement, Malin Akerman. If you had the casting powers, who would you net to play her?

LA: I think Amanda Seyfried is pretty good. I’m curious to see what happens.

Ddj: Do you consider yourself a feminist?

LA: Yeah, of course, absolutely. I think feminism is a philosophy based on the idea that gender should not be the primary consideration when you are dealing with a person.

Ddj: What’s your favorite dive bar in NYC?

LA: The Double Down Saloon on Avenue A.

Ddj: What’s the best spot to meet single men in a busy city?

LA: The Internet.

Ddj: I saw some of your food posts on Facebook. Are you veggie?

LA: I’ve been vegetarian for 22 1/2 years.

Ddj: Before we go into Flash Five, I want to get your opinion on something. We have an ongoing debate on SG Radio about texting versus calling. What would you rather get from a suitor, a text or call?

LA: A text. I don’t remember the last time I talked on the phone with somebody I was casually involved with.

Flash Five:

Ddj: Favorite Comic Book?

LA: A Child’s Life by Phoebe Gloeckner

Ddj: Vice?

LA: Sex

Ddj: Favorite place?

LA: My bed

Ddj: Any Regrets?

LA: I try not to regret things. I try to learn from them.

Ddj: Best Advice you’ve ever received and from who?

LA: I was very sad because my ex was moving away and I said, “You are the best thing that’s ever happened to me.” And he turned to me and said “You are the best thing that’s ever happened to you.” Not sure if that’s advice, but they’re good words to live by.

Ddj: You’re your own hero.

LA: Yes.


Post-feminist sex and sensuality expert Darrah de jour is a freelance journalist who lives in LA with her dog Oscar Wilde. Her writing has appeared in Marie Claire, Esquire and W. In her Red, White and Femme: Strapped With A Brain – And A Vagina columns for SuicideGirls, Darrah will be taking a fresh look at females in America. Hear her being interviewed about female sexuality on the, visit her blog at, and find her on Facebook.

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