Man Roots Culture: DAVE REEVES on GINSENG (Arthur, 2005)

Originally published in Arthur No. 19 (Nov 2005)

Man Roots Culture
By Dave Reeves

Fall is here, and it’s time to think about how you’re going to maintain your erection for the long winter months. Buying Viagra pills might do the trick, but face it, you are going to be broke after giving all your money to the gas man, so take my advice and pick up a dub sack of American ginseng instead.

Buying ginseng is like buying drugs; you’re going to get ripped off unless you know the deal. They won’t have it at the hippie health food store because hippies are afraid of the awesome power within. For the real you have to go to Chinatown. Go in any place that has a neon ginseng root in the window, or a picture of ginseng on the sign.

If you aren’t overwhelmed by the smell of the ginseng when you go in the door then you are not in the right place. The best places will have barrel after barrel of various roots and then thousand dollar roots laid out in little boxes to look like little people—hence the Chinese name that ginseng was bastardized from: Jenshen, or “man root.” These roots are prized as much for their size as for their shape and the super fat ones will supposedly do the same thing for your penis, which is the real reason they call it a “man root”.

The ginseng clerks are going to come at you like you are a hipster tourist, pushing inferior Chinese or Korean ‘sang, but you must remain adamantine for “American Ginseng.” And don’t let them talk you into any Chinese medicine bullshit, either. You didn’t go there to get skinny or to divine the future, you are there for S E X that will disturb the neighbors. Don’t ever forget that, no matter what they offer you. Tell them you want the 20 bag of American ginseng, cut into dime-size pieces. If they don’t have it, leave.

Take a piece of it out of the bag and stick it between your cheek and gum and let it dissolve for an hour or so until you finally chew it up. The flavor is bitter at first, but soon the sweet sweet nectar of immortality runs through your chi, hooking up your digestion and breath. You can feel your immune system double up and, according to the Soviet scientists, your cells grow more resistant to radiation.

The stuff you get will be probably be the typical gateway ginseng from Wisconsin. Start with the low dollar varieties as a novice, or else you might be overtaken by sexual urges and masturbate to death on the way to see your beloved (by the way, make sure you have some ass lined up before you do any of this). Later, when addiction takes hold, you will sell one of your many children for a rare wild root of Panax quinquefolius poached from North Carolina or Virginia.

Unfortunately, this strain will die out within our lifetime as it has been hunted to near extinction by sex-crazed hillbillies. The conscientious ginseng abuser will order a ginseng plant from Horizon Herbs (, which has everything for the modern spice witch, including hard-to-find ingredients such as henbane and belladonna. (You can also Amazon it for $3.99. —Ed.) It’s every American’s patriotic duty to plant some ‘Sang today or else our children’s, and our children’s children’s sex lives will be cold and uneventful affairs.

2 thoughts on “Man Roots Culture: DAVE REEVES on GINSENG (Arthur, 2005)

  1. Pingback: DEFEND DAVE REEVES. | Arthur Magazine

  2. Pingback: UPDATE: Arthur Magazine's anti-authoritarian "Do the Math" columnist DAVE REEVES released from jail, now doing forced labor | Arthur Magazine

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