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First Time

Last night I dreamed of Iran's president Ahmadinejad. No, not in this way. If we want to do this seriously, we need to avoid the puns. In my dream, I was a journalist supposed to interview the tyrant. I had to do so in order to prove worthy of something else, something that was due later this afternoon. I couldn't quite grasp what it was, but I was scared. I didn't want to leave my bed. When I finally woke up, I remembered. Today was the day of my first Independent blog.

I'm German. From a small town called Sankt Augustin for those of you who are really interested. For the rest of you, it's in the West. I've never written a blog before, let alone in English. I don't know which is scarier the online journal or the foreign language but the idea as a whole has clearly caused some nightmares. I am a journalist, that part of the nightmare is true. But for the first time in my journalistic life I understand why columnists are jumpy.

Don't worry, it's deliberate; no one forced me to. After all, there is a considerable difference between the Independent and the dictator. To tell you the truth, I myself offered to write the blog; I thought it might be fun: a German's take on the city, my Santa Barbara diaries, or something like that. Now, I'm not so sure. Suddenly the plan seems rather masochistic.

Then again, I do think about masochism a lot but from a more scientific point of view. This is what brought me here in the first place. I came to Santa Barbara to study porn and I am gladly leaving a bracket now for everyone who feels like reacting. [:]. Finished? Good. I am a visiting scholar at UCSB, and I write my dissertation on the aesthetics and politics of porn; to be precise, on its endless repetition. I admit, sometimes, this project can be scary too. It needs a lot of twisted thinking. And (at the risk of being a spoilsport here) it's much more reading than watching. But as many things in life, it is a challenge, and one that can be very joyful at times. The same, I hope, goes for this blog.

For the love of research. Let's face Ahmadinejad.

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