Where there’s a surface, there’s a man waiting in the wings to draw a penis on that surface. Case in point: @dicklatte — the classic Instagram account dedicated to pictures of lattes with dicks drawn on the crema.
These phallic compositions breathe new life into the dick-on-a-surface-industrial complex, with their surprising attention to detail and inventive weirdness (especially considering they’re designed with several meticulous flicks of the wrist on the surface of a latte).
Back in 2016, BuzzFeed spoke to the creator of these milky pricks and discovered that this Banksy of lattes (he prefers to remain anonymous) started this whole thing by accident. “I was trying to pour a heart, but at the last second, a perfectly shaped penis plopped out onto the cup. I laughed and sent a photo to my friend, and we giggled. I promised to get it right the next day, but then it just kept happening,” he told Buzzfeed. “Finally, I just took the extra milk foam and poured some balls, added a few details with the tip of my thermometer, and called it a dick latte.”
But let’s venture beyond the coffee cup, into the realm of, well, literally any other surface, to better understand why dudes love drawing dicks.
All the dicks.
Psychoanalyst Vanessa Sinclair told Broadly in 2016 that the art of drawing dicks has everything to do with flexing power — or in this case, lack thereof. “Essentially, the people who are drawing penises over and over again are trying to assert that they have the power,” she explained. “That they have the phallus and do not lack. That they’re not vulnerable. It’s the same classic example of older men who buy a sports car or motorcycle when their physical health and strength begins to decline.”
Dr. Pollens, a clinical adult and child psychologist, agrees in part with Sinclair that dick depictions stem from men’s anxiety over their own penises. “They’re worried about how powerful their genitalia can affect and oppress people so they want to show it off,” Pollens told BTRToday in 2016. But he adds that when it’s done in more private settings, it’s less egotistical and more inquisitive. Per BTRToday, “He explains that this can be healthy for growing boys, because in a way it contributes to some feeling of ‘mastery.’”
As this Kotaku article from 2013 points out, although dick drawings gained serious momentum after the movie Superbad (which featured the famous dick-drawing featurette above), drawing dicks on surfaces can be traced back centuries — to the 1600s in England, for example. “You can go back to a massive chalk drawing on a hill in England, circa the early 1600s,” writes Stephen Totilo.
Going back even further — like a lot further — the first penis picture can be traced to the very earliest humans. “Go all the way back to the oldest petroglyph ever discovered on Earth. We’re talking about the oldest rock carving by a person anywhere,” adds Totilo. “Carved, scientists say, supposedly about 10,000 years ago.”
The fact that the earliest human men were cave-dick scribblers says a lot about humanity and even more about men specifically. But one thing is clear: Men have and probably always will be obsessed with schlongs — even when they’re in their coffee cup.