The Functioning Failures of Foreplay - OZY | A Modern Media Company

The Functioning Failures of Foreplay

The Functioning Failures of Foreplay

By Eugene S. Robinson


Because knowing how is better than guessing how.

By Eugene S. Robinson

Secrets of Success

EUGENE, SIR: I really don’t know how to have this question answered without me feeling stupid for having asked it, and my man’s been shy or maybe even untruthful when I ask him, but how can I improve the quality of the oral sex I give?  — Head Start  

Dear Yo, Ho, Blow the Man Down: I don’t know that you’d ask a guy who owned a car and had driven a car what it’s like to fix a car, but being that I own a penis and have used the penis that I own, I’m more than happy to advise on how to work it from the business end. That’s even if I, myself, have only the most scant understanding of how to do what you’re asking me to advise you on doing better.

But before we get to that, praise must be levied for realizing sooner rather than later that asking your man how to get the job done is probably even a little worse than asking me. Why? Because any answer he gives that doesn’t already fall in line with what you’ve been doing might be looked on as a critique, which, even if that’s what you’re explicitly asking for, runs the risk of making you cranky because you’ll think he’s a dumbass for not having said something sooner. And while he might be a dumbass, he might also be a fool for trying to do that which is most delicate. To wit: teaching you something that will improve your market value in a market that may no longer include him.

Which is to say: Him being able to tell the world, “I taught her everything she knows about oral sex,” might really be some cold comfort if you dump him later. Anyways, you asked about improving and so I will say this: BRIO.

That is, enthusiasm, which is not always speed, works wonders. Any guide that makes the claim of specific SPOTS being useful is also pretty worthless since that’s like praising a chopstick when considering how good a meal was. I mean, a bad chopstick can ruin your day, but a good one won’t make up for a crap meal. So, enthusiasm, variation, use of hands to work places your mouth is not and, weirdly enough, body positioning. I had sex with a woman once who insisted that I remain on my back throughout the duration of what had begun to feel like a special kind of misery because if I stood up she felt “that was too demeaning.”

Yeah. I thought so too. Remember, this is supposed to be fun and something we play at versus grimly attaching ourselves to “getting it done.” So get out there. Have some fun and try different things, and how will you know when you’ve been successful? When that’s all he’s asking for. Which is known as “being careful what you ask for.”


Oh, Bondage, Up Yours!

EUGENE, SIR: I haven’t had what I call vanilla sex for almost 11 years now. I do not miss it. There is no way you could miss that I don’t miss it. I own a dungeon, I make my living as a domme, no one in my present social circle even remembers things being any other way, and still I have to beat off (sorry) men who are confused about what this means. It means, please direct your sexy interests elsewhere, but still … how do I make this more clear without wearing a sign? — Venus im Pelz  

Dear Wanda: How charming, a domme asking me how to sternly advise potential suitors how to fuck off. But I understand that you don’t mix business with pleasure and the day-to-day niceties that dull us and most of our exchanges are not where you best ply your trade. So I am glad to help. OK, ready? Repeat after me: “Have you ever given any thought to the finer points of cock-and-ball torture? Would you like to?” I think you’ll find tourists making quick exits and leaving you with? Gamers!

Foreplay On, Player

EUGENE, SIR: Why are men not more into foreplay? Do not confuse this with one of those “I want to cuddle more” questions, but when my vagina is dry at the moment that you find your penis hard, that means you still have work to do. Since this work ends with sex, why don’t more men make the connection? — Women  

Dear You’re Every Woman: You know I feel your pain. I once had a woman take her clothes off and stare at my still-flaccid penis and exclaim, “Well?!” Like the mere sight of her nude, arms akimbo and demanding an erection, was going to be enough to actually give me an erection. If I had been 18, yes, perhaps. But I was not 18, and I’m guessing 18 or not, your problem remains. However, let me explain that it’s not just cloddishness that creates the unfortunate circumstance of men believing the party begins when their party favor is erect and therefore ready to go — it’s more an issue of so much is riding on that very moment, that all hands are on deck, so to speak.

Or to paraphrase Tony Montana, “It’s hard to be a man-g.”

After all of whatever he had to do to get there, up to and including cleaning his shirt, showering and being entertaining enough to get you naked, there’s that whole erection panic, backed with early-ejaculation panic, settled around the being-discovered-by-the-wife-girlfriend-boyfriend-stray-dog panic that sets in — and, well, he’s got a lot on his mind. So for the first time, when these jitters are most intense, I’d counsel a little patience. However, if you’re well into your relationship, you might remind him if he needs reminding that the vagina is unlikely to run away before he can say hello to it, and maybe he should relax a little and let it play out like he actually enjoys it being played out.

I say this, but I have been quoted as saying in answer to the question, “Eugene, what’s foreplay?”, this very thing: “Foreplay? That’s me driving over here.” So what do I know?

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