hand job, (adj)

1 Slang for techniques used in masturbation or sex where the hand in the primate sense is used to grasp and/or manipulate. Unusual dexterity in this area, singles primates out for our unique form of 'sex'*. Though opposablity in the thumb is not necessarily a prerequisite, as demonstrated in the sexual behavior of brachiating gibbons in captivity**1.

Other mammals, and the rest of God's creation, are incapable of giving hand jobs - and hence must masturbate using their environment, (as in dolphins and porcupines)3rhythmically bounce AKA "belly thwacking"-(reportedly observed in stabled stallions 2), fumble with prehensile trunks,(seen in captive elephants3), or struggle with a cumbersome double hind leg grip (as in captive lions)4. The grasping and articulate hand can be seen by many as a gift from a benevolent creator, to be used for fun and profit. Pity the poor manatee that must contend with awkward contortions and a pair of flippers, akin to a nineteenth century adolescent, restrained with anti-masturbation mittens.

Research note

When the behavior first developed and spread in human evolution is unknown, and its implication in the relationship between humans as animals, and animals as captives is unclear. It could be said to be an act of frustration in a highly organized society, but first we would need to research frequency and occurrence in other social systems and unfortunately hand job statistics for premodern societies, have never been collected or found, for what could be said obvious reasons.

*In the social rather than the biological sense.

**brachiators have a hand anatomy optimized for swinging with fingers in a hook rather than grasp, but in lives that man gives them, they make do with the hands God gave them.


1Abnormal behaviour of captive Gibbons at

2Masturbation in horses

3Biological Exuberance. Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity / Bruce Bagemihl / St. Martin's Press / 1999

4When Elephants Weep : The Emotional Lives of Animals / Susan McCarthy, Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson / 1996 / ISBN: 0385314280

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