Walter Mencken 11:31 a.m., Feb. 1
EXCLUSIVE! Interview with Pulitzer-Prize winning photographer A. Source
Man who took picture of Bob Filner's Press Secretary Lena Lewis sipping from schlong straw tells the story behind historic photo.
By now, we all know the story: A. Source was attending the Las Vegas bachelorette party for Lena Lewis, Press Secretary for San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, a man accused of inappropriate sexual conduct by no less than 3,458 women. Lewis, in a move common among bachelorettes, took a sip from her Bride's Cup using a straw shaped like a male member, and A. Source caught the moment on camera. Two days later, Bob Filner resigned as Mayor, and Source's photo went on to win the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for photography.
We can't show you the photo, which A. Source gave exclusively to Team 10 at 10news.com. But we can show you this screencap of a Google Image search for the photo, so that's pretty good:
In their comments, the Pulitzer judges wrote:
"Sometimes, the most powerful comments on a situation come from the fringes of that situation. Eddie Adams' famed photo of a South Vietnamese general executing a Viet Cong lieutenant in the streets of Saigon didn't depict the more famous horrors of that war - napalm bombing, the massacres of entire villages, etc. Indeed, it didn't even indicate America's presence in the conflict. But the intimacy and immediacy of the image was enough to highlight - to make personal - the larger nightmare. Source's photograph operates in much the same way. Though the genders are reversed - a woman doing the objectifying - and the context is recreational rather than professional, the image captures the warped sexual power-play that infects American politics, and indeed, American culture in general. Also, the way we use humor to protect ourselves from acknowledging and dealing with the problem.
To be sure, many brides-to-be suck penis straws, just as many men shot other men during the Vietnam War. But the fact that it was this woman, at this time, sucking this particular penis straw, together with the fact that Source was there to capture the image at just the right moment, is what makes this photograph extraordinary and significant."
Now, SD on the QT is proud to present a brief interview with the notoriously press-averse A. Source about this amazing shot.
SD on the QT: How did you get the picture? Were you planning it?
Source: I didn't know when I took that picture. I mean, I know when I took it but I didn't know what I had. When I took it, when she raised the penis straw to take a sip of her drink, I didn't know she was going to do that. I thought she was just going to threaten to do it. I seen her reaching for the straw, and as she reached for the straw I just brought my camera up with her straw and took the picture as quick as she brought it up. Well, it turned out that's when she sucked on the penis straw. From the time the picture was taken the penis straw was still in her mouth.
SD on the QT: How did you feel after you took the picture?
Source: Nothing, nothing. No. I felt absolutely nothing when I did the picture I logged onto Facebook and I uploaded the image and I captioned it, "I think I got somebody sucking on a penis straw," and I went out to lunch. It was that simple. I've seen so many people suck penis straws. When I took the picture, it was so... Anybody could have taken it. I had nothing to do with it. It happened and I was there."
More like this:
- Is that my Penis? — Jan. 21, 2010
- What's so funny? — July 8, 2009
- Charlie Didn't Mind — April 26, 2007
- Mr. and Mrs. Downer — Sept. 1, 2005
- Developing Nude Photos, the Invention of Coffee, and the Necessity of Toothpaste — Jan. 10, 1980