It's Not the Sexting, Stupid
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE
Because having your privates go public shouldn’t be a cause for alarm.
By Eugene S. Robinson
Penis Pic = 1,000 Words?
EUGENE, SIR: A neighbor — whom I met only once, right after I moved in, and with whom I exchanged phone numbers on that first meeting — sent me a photo of his penis. I called the cops and filed a police report. My friends thought I went overboard and could have jeopardized his future employability. I wanted there to be a record of the incident in case he went any further. Thoughts? — TM
Dear Transcendental Meditation: I love all of the misplaced concern for the errant penis-pic sender. Like sending an unrequested penis pic is benign, funny and almost — dare we say — harmless. The sentiment here, unspoken but not unnoticed, is: What’s the big deal? It’s just a penis. You’ve seen one before, you’ll be seeing one again, and this is the modern and functional equivalent of saying “hello,” isn’t it?
Here’s some news: No, it isn’t.
But a better, non-screechy way of approaching it is from the vantage point of efficacy. For this I turn to an inveterate penis-pic sender, and former porn-film reviewer, Jimmy the G. Over the course of his sex life, JTG has slept with 112 women. By his own estimation, he has sent a total of 37 unwarranted, unrequested and possibly unwelcome penis pics, in part, he says, “because I thought it was funny. But this was like 15 years ago. It was still a new angle of attack in the ‘getting sex’ department.” Of those 37 penis-pic recipients — an assortment of bank employees, women he met at parties and waitresses he cross-triangulated through Facebook — JTG bedded three.
Think of it like this: If you went to a café to get a cup of coffee and out of the 112 times you went there, the café had coffee only THREE times, well, you’d be a fool to keep going back. And yet JTG did, leading me to believe that this wasn’t being done because it was effective. No, the exact opposite. It was being done with an expectation of failure, so not to seduce, but to upset the apple cart. Not a modern way of saying “hello,” but a modern way of flashing.
So: Fuck that guy. Or rather, don’t.
Being responsible for others’ failures in life is not your responsibility. And, oh yeah: Your friends suck. Your neighbor exposed himself to a stranger in more ways than one and you did the right thing, reminding me of that scene from A Bronx Tale. Now? Youse can’t leave. Yep, he got what was coming to him.
A Damned Good Ducker
EUGENE, SIR: In a past column someone asked you what turned you on. You’re so very clever with the words, sir, but my wife and I noticed you didn’t answer the question. You can’t call your column “Sex With Eugene” and avoid this like that. So, what does the “expert” like? — Kenny
Dear Kenny’s Dead: I did answer the question, but since the question also came up at the “Sex With Eugene” event we just had — specifically, what were my qualifications for giving youse advice (two youses, one column, qualification enough?) — and here, again, I get it. This is the functional equivalent of you asking your shrink why he or she is a shrink, and while most shrinks will stonewall you, I’ll tell you right out: Because I’m largely unfamiliar with shame. And nothing that is human is foreign to me, and I’ve been this way for a while.
Flashback to high school sex ed class. The teacher, a gym teacher, thought it great fun to get all of these wised-up New York kids in a room for an hour and make them uncomfortable.
“Any questions? C’mon. I can never shut you kids up, and now? No questions?!” She looked around the room, enjoying the discomfort. “EUGENE? How about you?”
Asking me anything? Mistake. “Sure, I have a question: Does the use of a foam contraceptive ruin the quality of cunnilingus?”
She, now fire-engine red, stammered, stuck. “I, uh, hmm … I don’t know.”
Score one for the smart-ass. So, what I like? Everything. With the exception of coprophagy. Don’t look it up. You’ve been warned.
Goose vs. Gander: The Lesbian Chronicles
EUGENE, SIR: I’m in the eighth year of being married to a man whom I dated for four years before marrying. Our relationship is great; sex is great. But I have been thinking that I’d like us to mix in a third, and I’d want that third to be a woman, an idea which my husband seems into. What he’s not so into is that I don’t want him to also have sex with her. I don’t mind if he watches, but I thought this could be my thing. Am I being selfish? He won’t budge, even though I told him it’s better than me cheating on him. What should I say to change his mind? — Name withheld by request
Dear Judy Collins: Forget it. I’m not signing off on this. While all praises due you for being frank about what you want and what you don’t want, the fact that you’re clear about your desires doesn’t make those desires mutually desirable. Or even OK. Unless, of course, your husband goes along with it. Which he isn’t, since what you’re asking for is a free sex pass. It makes little difference that he’s being allowed to own it a little bit by just being there — this is all about you and, frankly, if you’re nostalgic for those days when every 24 hours was 24 hours about you, well, there’s something for that and it’s called divorce. Not even open relationships encourage the binding of the other partner into sexless spectatorship.
Unless THAT is the/your fetish.
Which it doesn’t seem to be. So, yes, you are being honest but also honestly selfish. And realistically, the only thing I can think that would change his mind is for him to be unshackled, if not to enjoy the other woman as well, then to enjoy someone else, somewhere else if you’re not interested and/or willing.
That is what’s commonly known as “fair.” Also, threatening to cheat? Not nearly as sexy as it might seem when you’re saying it. Notice I said “threatening.” The first time it’s not a threat, it’s a warning. If it’s mentioned again, it’s a threat, since those who are serious never just threaten. They, Yoda-like, just do. So while I’m not advising you to cheat in so many words, I am saying that sometimes not everyone’s needs can be met and you gotta do what you gotta do. Just don’t say I told you so.