An Ordinary Man

Or, Men 101

Month: August, 2014

The “clitourethrovaginal complex” (continued)

This being one of the more popular topics here (“no G-Spot! oh, it’s the CUV region now, whew”), it deserves a follow up. The idea of this being a complex, rather than a discrete spot, is not new. Years ago, I saw a charming diagram of two wings trailing back from the clitoris, wrapping around the vaginal canal, with the presenter offering assurances that the whole region was susceptible to the proper touch. It was an amazingly erotic image but I don’t know where I saw it.

It looked something like this:

afterdinnerparty.com's "winged wishbone"

afterdinnerparty.com’s “winged wishbone”

The interesting – fascinating, actually – thing is that it might all be sort of accidental. In describing it to his college students, Professor Richard Wilson, an ordinary man, puts it this way:

“Some of us in biology have come to what we consider an inescapable conclusion – that the female orgasm is an evolutionary artifact and serves no true biological purpose. It is, for want of a better term, a happy accident.”
Tanya stared at him, whether with hostility or merely intense curiosity, so he began his elaboration by looking directly at her.
“To understand this, one has to understand human embryology, which is not that different than any other kind of mammalian embryology. Although the individual’s gender is determined at the moment of conception by the presence or absence of the Y chromosome, the developing embryo does not show sexual differentiation until several weeks later. The blueprints for human anatomy are not all that different between males and females in that most of our systems operate exactly the same way; our circulation, digestion, sensory, et cetera. That’s why males have nipples, even though they normally never go on to secrete milk for the young; they were in the joint blueprint and there’s no mechanism for nature to take them out so they get built.
“Most of the female parts are homologous to the males – or vice versa. Most notably, the undifferentiated embryonic genital tubercle becomes the clitoris in the female and the penis in the male, but there’s quite a listing of sexual homologues available on the internet for those of you who might be interested.” Presumably that would be all of them, with the luckiest going on to make side-by-side comparisons in the privacy of their dorm rooms. He didn’t think it advisable to stand up there and tell them that the mons was the feminine counterpart of the scrotum, or that her inner lips matched the spongy erectile tissue of his dick. Labia was one of those words that was just a little bit too tangible for polite conversation, even in an academic setting. “The upshot of all of this is that the female body receives all of the necessary components to make orgasm possible, even if it is not, strictly speaking, essential for the continuation of the line. But I do not want to leave anyone with the impression that the sexuality of the human female is somehow jury-rigged or cobbled together from left-over spare parts as it is quite likely that its functioning, whatever its origination, has been honed over the centuries in that women who enjoyed sex presumably have out-bred women who do not, thereby tending to perfect it just like any other form of selective pressure. Not exactly survival of the fittest, but of the happiest, I guess….”

With a working title of Men 101, the novel is an unflinching, brutally honest view of male sexuality.

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God Loves Sex?

“Nature has a way of imbuing activities essential for survival with both a negative element and at least a modicum of pleasure that also positively reinforces them; it’s not just that being hungry is uncomfortable; it is that eating is pleasant. A cold drink does not just relieve the nastiness of thirst, it also tastes good. Sleeping is more than the relief of fatigue, it is pleasant in and of itself.
“This is also true with sex, although it is somewhat different. A lack of food, water and sleep will eventually kill you – in a distinctly unpleasant manner – so the increasingly ill effects of doing without any of those three is usually sufficient to compel the organism to try to take care of them. Hunger, thirst and fatigue are not nice; we take steps to avoid them and would even if partaking of food, water and rest were not inherently pleasant. It’s not necessarily the same with sex. Technically speaking, a lack of sex is not going to kill you or any other animal. But courtship can be astonishingly expensive and not always productive, so some animals might just say the heck with it. It is possible that is why sex is so pleasurable; nature wants to make certain you put forth the effort it so often requires. If you think about it, raising young is so incredibly expensive, not to mention potentially dangerous, that you have to wonder, why bother?”

Richard, an ordinary man, explaining to his students why sex might be so pleasant. The title of this post comes from an article in the New York Daily News about a non-denominational church hot on the idea that God loves sex. I’m not quite sure I follow the theology there, but it is clear that few things in life offer quite so much pleasure.

The “clitourethrovaginal complex”?

The G-spot is so much easier to say but the New York Daily News reports that Italian scientists think there is no such thing. Fortunately, they believe in something equally effective, just harder to pronounce, unless you settle for “CUV region,” which sort of sounds like it might be someplace in North Dakota. I’m sticking with G-spot.

Reclaiming Your Sex Drive During Menopause, a guest post by Marie Goldberg

an important posting, with good information

Life in the Boomer Lane

 

While menopause has come out of the closet, the loss of sex drive experienced by menopausal and post-menopausal women hasn’t. We still tend to gloss over such loss or to bury it under articles that scream “How to Have the BEST SEX EVER After Age 50!”  But great sex, or even good sex, let alone sex itself, can’t occur until we look squarely in the eye of the realities at this stage of life. 

*****

By pretty much all accounts, menopause is not a fun time for women. Hot flashes, night sweats, changes in mood, the overwhelming feeling that you are at the mercy of your hormones (or lack thereof!)—these are only some of the symptoms of what could be considered a woman’s “second puberty,” the bane of just about every woman’s existence after the age of 50. But perhaps the most difficult aspect of menopause—as well as the…

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Kate Moss & My Tea Cup

The New York Daily News reports that British artist Jane McAdam Freud commissioned a mold of Kate Moss’s left breast to help her design a Champagne glass. It is a wonderful, but obvious, idea. Years ago, I took a photograph of a teacup because of how intimately it reflected the shape of the relaxed breast, which made it a delight to hold:

tea cup

On a less elegant note, I can’t image there are too many young men around who haven’t wanted to cover their girl’s breast with the rounded lid of a McDonald’s milkshake, especially with that handy cut-out. Boobs are fun – what can we say?

Isn’t a Freaky Relationship Sometimes Just a Freaky Relationship?

I’ve read the first Fifty Shades of Grey, and except for the fact that it’s always fun to see the word clitoris in print, I didn’t find it particularly erotic. In fact, I think I remember a scene in an old Ken Follet book that had more impact on me, and it was only a paragraph if I remember correctly. Even Jaws had a line or two that rang my bell a bit louder. But just when I was wondering what all the fuss was about, I started to appreciate Anastasia’s prolonged debate about throwing in with a guy who got off by hurting her. Had I not by this time accidentally brushed elbows with two wildly different people – one male, one female – who admitted to liking a little pain with their pleasure, the debate would have rang false, but as it is, it was like the boredom associated with Ahab’s pursuit of the white whale in Moby Dick and I saw the literary value to the story. Just like a whaling voyage is interminably long, Anastasia’s decision was that hard to make. At the end, I was pleased that she appeared to decide that pain and pleasure, at least beyond a certain extent, were incompatible (I liken it to salting my ice cream, and in my world, there’d be no need for the second and third parts of the trilogy).

So I was a little suprised to come across a study purporting to link certain risky behaviors of young women with whether or not they’ve read Fifty Shades:

“Our study showed strong correlations between health risks in women’s lives—including violence victimization—and consumption of Fifty Shades, a fiction series that portrays violence against women.”

But what is the meaning of just a simple correlation? With its famously graphic sexual depictions, it seems fairly obvious that the women who read any part of the series are more likely to have been around the block a time or two more than those who did not. That makes me think that for many of those ladies, a little walk on the dark side was just that, a little walk on the dark side.

I guess it depends if a sudden Snap! makes you cringe or smile. Violence against women cannot be condoned, but consensual BDSM should not be confused with violence against women.

P.S. Get help if you cringed – he has no right, or need, to be that way and you do NOT deserve it.

Virginity Pledges Undermine Intimacy (imho)

This seems like something of a no-brainer; men who take chastity vows and rely upon the support of others to help them maintain these (rather unrealistic) promises, get lost after their wedding night, according to a study presented to the American Sociological Society, as reported by the New York Daily News.

Sex is something entirely for the couple to explore, discover, and work out, in fits and starts, in glorious swoopes of passion and potentially paralyzing bouts of awkwardness – nothing could be more private for them. A chastity vow, on the other hand, is more of a public political statement regarding something that is absolutely no one’s business but the two involved with each other. I cannot imagine how one of them would feel hearing the other discuss how they’ve managed to abstain ….

These men have deprived themselves of the love, guidance, joy and friendship of the most important person in their lives for no discernible reason other than to further the aims of the group to which they belong. Public affirmations that we’re NOT doing it are as tasteless as bragging about how you are and neither put the relationship on solid ground.

Madonna’s Vadge

In one of the odder posts I have seen recently, a woman who should know better, Emily Trainham, under the title “Madonna is Officially Desperate Enough to Take Vagina Selfies,” (fishwrapper.com) lambasted her because the 50+ singer had the audacity to post this shot on Instagram:

Instagram | Madonna

Instagram | Madonna

Ms. Trainham was pleased that Madonna later took it down, saying, “She actually had the good sense to delete it this time, but, as you know, the internet never forgets. And now, neither shall we. This image shall forever be burned into our brains, and we will be haunted by it for the rest of our days,” and goes on to beg her to put her camera away because this is “just not working – for anyone.”

I can’t be sure where Emily comes by her disgust for female genitalia but I’ve got news for her; a woman who knows she looks good is entitled to post such a tame shot and it works great for me.

P.S. It’s not really how good it looks, as much as how well it’s used; for guys, there’s no place else on earth quite like it. And I’m not talking to the 30-somethings when I say that….

Rest in Peace, Robin Williams

Far be it from me to psychoanalyze anyone, but the tragic loss of Robin Williams does open doors to necessary conversations and reflections. I’ve read that he was concerned about money, had been divorced twice, and was plagued by addiction issues. But for me, the most significant thing I read is that he apparently retired at night to a different room than his current wife slept in, whether that is true or not.

If you are in your sixties, past your working prime, and not sleeping with a woman you love, you might well be suicidal. I have trouble seeing where you wouldn’t be. It is my situation, and I am hanging on by my eye teeth. It is not a permanent solution to a temporary problem, as many are wont to say, but the only apparent solution to a permanent problem. I cannot fix my situation, anymore than he could fix his, even without addiction issues.

Robin Williams was clearly an extraordinary guy, but at heart I suspect he was an ordinary man, just like the rest of us. The death of intimacy is the death of marriage is the death of the spouse. Maybe that’s not true in his case, but you might want to ask yourself if it is, or headed that way, in yours.

Regrets?

Billy Joel serenaded Christy Brinkley at a concert the other night according to the NY Daily News. She had starred in his “Uptown Girl” video and they had a child together during their nine-year marriage. It’s never been clear to me how a couple can go from loving each other enough to get married to not wanting to be together any longer, but it happens too often. I wonder what these two thought while he was singing a song that obviously has meant so much to both of them? You probably don’t have a million-seller song to share, but you DO have memories, good ones; try to keep it together.