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Harmon Leon goes where porn is made!

Wednesday, Feb 16 2005
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Editor's note: The following story is rated PG-13 for language and sexual content. Those under 18 must read this while accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.


When I was but a little kid, I once asked my dad how babies are made. He had trouble explaining and went back to reading his newspaper. Fortunately, a neighborhood kid, Kevin Connelly, told me it was the result of a man "putting his 'thingy' into a woman's 'woo-woo.'" Then he drew a crude picture.

Now, let's skip ahead to adulthood. I'm in an industrial section of North Hollywood, across from a sheet-metal shop and ready to be a clothed extra in a porno movie. You know, during the plot parts.


Porn fun fact!: Have you ever thought about a career in porn? Men earn $250 to $450 per sex scene, while women snag $400 to $1,000. That's a lot of crack and pudding!


The first scene's on the roof. Mariachi music blares from the restaurant next door. Planes descend in the background. "What's the movie about?" I ask the jaded boom-mike operator, hoping to prepare for my role. "I'm really not sure," he mumbles.

Ron, a veteran director of some 500 porno films (including The Sopornos I, II, and III), explains the two-day feature shoot of The Contortionist, penned by Raven Touchstone. "This one's about a codependent woman who becomes everyone she meets," Ron, who's clad in stylish suspenders and thick black glasses, philosophically elaborates. "She becomes the victim and the rescuer."

Not to mention that she gets hand-shaken a lot.

Ron gets serious now, even evincing a bit of nostalgia. "Nowadays, people don't want to see features. There's no style, no nothing! The actors used to be responsive," the director says. "Now they're a whole different breed."

"Let's hurry, I got to get home to my wife," barks Harv, who's wearing a police uniform and will portray Officer Dick Husky. Harv is best described as one ugly mofo.


After some small talk about Harv's kids, everyone's ready to roll. I'm wearing a trench coat and a hat for the clothed-extra role of detective. I've chosen to go by the clothed-porn-extra name of Harm-on-Hammer!

"What's my motivation?" I ask the director, who's been kind of oblivious to my presence.

"You walk from this side of the roof, to that side," he mumbles.

I think about it for a moment.

"This side of the roof, to that side," I repeat. "Got it!"

Action!

Cameron, the blond porn starlet with huge fake ta-tas, sprinkles a canister of ashes, supposedly the result of cremation, off the roof.

"More tit," directs the cameraman. "More drama."

I walk from one side of the roof to the other.

"You're under arrest," cries Officer Dick Husky, grabbing Cameron by the waist and exposing her upper body as she struggles and squirms. "You're under arrest for scattering ashes in a public place, indecent exposure, and ... AROUSING AN OFFICER!"

"Aroused?" coyly shrieks Cameron.

Raven Touchstone can write some mean dialogue.


The morning drags on. The set inside is now inhabited by large numbers of older, unintimidating men and sleazy father-figure types. One guy looks about 100; he pages through porn magazines with a very old woman who could pass for a worker at a craft-fair booth. (Could she be Raven Touchstone?)

Being very careful where I sit, I set up camp at the food table. I'm sad to learn that I'm being relieved of my role as a clothed extra. Maybe I shouldn't have smiled and waved at the camera!

"Just let me know if you want me to walk from this side of the room to that side," I tell the director as I put a heap of salsa on a chip.

It's a reality that male readers probably won't believe, but after a relatively short time, a porn set actually does become boring. At least, this one's boring -- until the shotgun masturbation scene starts.

"Harv, what are you doing?" bellows the suspenders-clad director, to help the actor find his motivation.

Like Brando, Harv thinks for a moment.

"She's playing with the gun and her Mrs. Butterworth, and I'm encouraging it," Harv answers.

Cameron, naked, places the firearm between her legs.

"Action!"

"That's it, precious. There's your new best friend. Get intimate with it now!" commands Harv, referring not to his Gerald Ford, but to the shotgun.

Cameron cocks the gun and diddles her Mrs. Butterworth with it.

A group of big, leering guys and gramps around the set get real quiet and start breathing heavily in unison. It sounds like they just ran a 5K.


Porn fun fact!: Did you know Raven Touchstone has penned more than 600 porn scripts in her 20-year career? She was also a child actress and was the voice of the mama doll at the end of the original Planet of the Apes movie.


Let's move to hard-core.

Harv appears solemn, almost meditative. He's a 15-year veteran, yet still nervous. His fingers are pinched around his nose. He occasionally stares intensely off into space. He's getting into character, or waiting for the Viagra to kick in, as if he were Olivier transforming into Richard III, only with a boner.

"We need water on the set," the production assistant announces.

"OK, we're rolling here," says Rob, the producer of The Contortionist and the Milton Berle of porn-set humor. "Cameron, get a dick in your mouth."

The director, with cigarette in his mouth, yells, "Action!" Harv removes Cameron's shirt.

"Hand on her breast again, Harv," a cameraman directs. "Arch your back again."

My stomach loudly grumbles. The jaded boom guy shoots me a look. Naked Harv is now at full attention. I don't find this pleasant.

"Play with the breasts, Harv!"

The camera crew dances around, dramatically switching angles as Harv gets down to tongue exercises. Cameron grunts and groans as if she's having a tooth pulled.

"Guys, let's move this coffee table!"

The actors momentarily stop the monkey dance as the crew removes the piece of furniture.

"Harv, can you turn your head so the shadow doesn't fall on her Mrs. Butterworth?" spouts the suspendered director, taking another drag off his cigarette.

"We got six minutes of tape!" declares the rotund sound guy. "Let's roll out to hard-core!"

Harv and Cameron start going at it with monkey-in-heat fervor, loudly grunting and using various descriptive, declarative sentences. A gramps breathes heavily over my shoulder. I move across the room and nibble into a doughnut from the food table. "These are good doughnuts," I tell the other porn actress, who's 20, has huge fake ta-tas, and goes by the name Honey.

"Weren't you on the Gush II shoot?" Honey asks me.

"No," I say, pretty sure she's mistaking me for Harmon-the-German, my evil porn twin.

On set, the tempo builds. It builds! It builds! It builds! Then the rotund sound guy barks, "Let's change the tape!" Everything comes to a grinding halt. Harv dismounts. Still fully aroused, he takes time for a cigarette and shares his mainstream aspirations to be a stand-up comedian.

Being in the comedy industry, I offer advice to nude, aroused Harv.

"When at a comedy club," I advise, "be sure not to hump anything onstage!"

Harv takes this in, then pulls out a tube of lube and lotions up his Calvin Coolidge. I could really do without that.

"OK guys, we're back to work again!" commands the director.

Cameron starts bouncing away like she's riding a crazed pogo stick.

Again, the moment is short-lived. The production assistant rushes in. "If anyone is not parked in our spots, they're towing cars!"

Everything is brought to a halt.

"Am I good across the street?" inquires Harv of the naked woman mounted on top of him. The worried porn starlet dismounts.

"Can you make sure my car is safe?" she asks. There's much talk about parking and moving cars.

When the parking situation is cleared up, the director shouts, "We're going into reverse combo." Harv lubes up again, re-preparing his Andrew Jackson. Must he do that?

"You guys are doing great!" says the cameraman. "Look over your shoulder, Cameron."

The tempo builds. It builds! It builds! It builds!

"I got a muscle cramp!" Cameron suddenly cries.

Once again, everything is brought to a dead halt.

"Kind of walk around and put some weight on it," yells the director.

Apologetic, Cameron hops around naked. The boom guy takes time to read the paper. One of the grips naps on the couch.


Porn fun fact!: Do you ever wonder why you don't see the Olsen Twins in porn movies? That's because showing the Olsen Twins is illegal!


Things suddenly turn really depressing.

Looking closely at the monitor, the director in suspenders shouts, "Jim, we need a courtesy wipe!" He points to the monitor, right at the insertion point. "I think I see some the Olsen Twins!"

The porn starlet stops monkey-grunting. She freaks out. "What's wrong?! What's wrong?!"

"Nothing," the director says, cigarette still in mouth. "Can I get some baby wipes please?"

"It's just the lube!" she stretches for an excuse.

"I thought I saw something you could wipe off," explains the director. "Sorry to stop the momentum."

The freaked porn starlet storms off the set. Porn isn't as glamorous as it looks.


Porn fun fact!: Did you know the average career span of a porn actress is two years? But remember: Porn years are like dog years, only more so. Each year in porn is 15 years of regular life!


We have no other choice but to break for lunch. The entree: greasy chicken. While I try to eat my greasy chicken, the director and the rotund sound guy watch the Olsen Twins footage as if it were Zapruder footage.

"Have we done anything illegal? No!" the director in suspenders rationalizes. "Have we done anything to stop getting this sold? No!"

What they have done is ruin my appetite.

"That separates the professionals from those who want to be -- they can't handle the pressure," Gino, a seven-year porn vet who is in the next scene, notes philosophically.

I ask Gino to pass the coleslaw. He rambles on, making eye contact strong enough that it goes beyond my comfort level. "When I 'pop,'" Gino explains, "I don't want a lot of guys hanging around, but I still do it. I block it out. I truly go into a zone."

I can't take my eyes off of Gino -- winner of last year's Adult Video News award for Best Oral Sex Scene -- mostly because of his obvious hairpiece. I ask a burning question: "Why do you like porn?"

"I'm kind of an exhibitionist. I get turned on having people watch and guys thinking, 'I want to be in his shoes.' I like acting," Gino says as Honey walks by; he points to her. "And I get to have sex with that beautiful woman."

Rob, the producer and Milton Berle of porn, interrupts. "I made him do this scene where he's shaking hands with a 60-year-old woman."

I have another heaping serving of coleslaw as Honey and Gino, who'll soon be having sex, meet for the first time.

"What have you heard about me?" asks Gino.

"That you have a big Woodrow Wilson!"

"Any notes?" Gino asks.

Honey thinks for a moment. "Don't stick your finger in my Olsen Twins place," she says, pausing. "Unless you ask!"


The day drags on like high school. Right after the director screams, "I don't know where she took off to, but she better be back by 6!" Cameron reappears, looking as if sudden noises would instigate screaming.

"Are you OK?" asks the director in a sleazy/fatherly sort of way.

She nods weakly, like a wounded deer. It's a tender moment that's interrupted by, "OK, let's get some soft-core coverage!"

"God, it's good baby!" shouts Harv as the camera rolls. From this angle I notice Harv has a very flabby ass.

The rotund sound guy reads tech cues from a clipboard. "We got five [minutes of film] hard and three-plus on soft!"

There's a brief discussion about where Harv should praise Jesus. Several of Cameron's body parts are mentioned.

"Can we get it down her Mrs. Butterworth, or is that illegal?" asks a concerned Harv.

It's finally agreed: the bottom. Harv shall praise Jesus on the bottom! Hurrah for all!

They assume the praise Jesus position. Once again, direct, descriptive, declarative sentences are shouted.

I feel a bit nauseous; the greasy chicken, Harv's flabby ass -- it's all turning me off. The producer walks around with dollar signs in his eyes.

"I have four minutes of tape left; do you want him to praise Jesus?" asks the rotund sound guy.

"All right, let's bring it home!" barks the director, captain of a copulating ship.

While being captured from all camera angles, Harv finally praises Jesus. The moment is faked several times for facial close-up purposes.

"And cut!"

I thought there might be some sort of applause or celebration. Instead, the director, with cigarette in mouth, snaps, "Give her two pieces of toilet paper to wipe the Jesus praise off her Mrs. Butterworth!"

Without fanfare, Cameron is quickly clothed for the next scene. With that, I retire from being a clothed porn extra, thinking that, if my dad had brought me to a porn set when I was but a lad, he could have effortlessly explained to me the beauty behind the facts of life.

About The Author

Harmon Leon

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