The sexual icons at work in our culture and our lives fall into two categories: fantasy and fetish. By "icons" we mean any imagery that is used and reused over and over for what it represents, for example Marilyn Monroe is an icon, and so is Vampirella. Fetish and fantasy are opposites in at least one important way. The icons of men's fantasies - things like sexy nurses, bawdy housewives, or nude angels - are meant to integrate our values and broaden our experience, while the icons of fetish - things like s&m, cross-dressing, or body part obsession - are meant to isolate our values and ultimately limit our experiences. Fantasy makes us hope and dream of happiness. Fetish tries to replace the intensity of joy with the terror of horror. Both fantasy and fetish involve intense emotion and sexual arousal, however, fantasy is healthy while fetish is not. For example, fantasizing about a sexy wife leads a man to work hard and try to improve himself to the point where he could conceivably attract such a woman, while a french maid fetish pretends that all a man has to do to score a desirable sexual partner is to have a messy room. Perhaps the simplest way to look at it is that a fantasy is a plan that might take one's whole life to accomplish, while a fetish is a fantasy that desires the impossible, and all the energy one devotes to it is simply a waste of one's life. This holds true for any example you care to think of, even this photoset. It's Rhian that turns us on, not the cookies.