The Protocols of Post-Pandemic Sex Parties
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE
Because nothing will abate the urge to mate.
EUGENE, SIR: The idea of sex right now seems crazy. I’m not saying you’re crazy for writing about it, but do you feel even the slightest bit guilty for talking shit while people are dying? I’m not trying to be a jerk; I just want a real answer. — Fun Is Fun, but …
Dear FIF Butt: Sex can be lots of things, and if you’ve been reading this column, you can see it often is. Sex can be just sex or it can be theater or therapy or, in some cases, protest. Members of the LGBTQ community have seen the most minute aspects of the manner in which they live and love dissected in public forums for the better part of the 20th century in a conversation that’s still far from over.
So talking about sex like it’s depoliticized and not worthy of serious political discussion is, it seems to me, not quite right.
That being said, I can see your point, which, to paraphrase, is this: How can individuals’ interest in a momentary physical release, or expression of such, stand up against the existential interests of a people?
To which I would reply that there’s nothing much more existential than sexual expression.
Moreover, people have continued having sex in some of the most dire times in human history. How do I know? You’re reading what I’m writing, right? Which is to say, you’re alive to read what I, who am also alive, am writing. Someone had to screw to make that happen. Lots of someones. Through wars, famines, floods and all manner of misery.
This is precisely how we keep on keeping on. Thanks for writing.
The Safest Kind of Sex?
EUGENE, SIR: I’m part of a swingers’ group and we’re slowly opening up again — you’re invited to attend any of our return events if you’re interested. As it is also a business, we’re adhering to post-pandemic COVID-19 protocols, so transmission shouldn’t be one of your concerns. I can share the protocols with you, and maybe you could share them with your readers? — Kelly
Dear Kelly’s Heroes: While I can eat lug nuts, I probably should not eat lug nuts, even if lug nut manufacturers don’t specifically forbid the consumption of lug nuts by Mr. Eugene S. Robinson. So while I admire your dedication to solid business practices and your civic engagement, I’m going to have to skip your first few parties back. Thanks for asking, though.
Weirdly enough, your guidelines hew somewhat closely to what New York City, one of the places hardest hit by the virus, is advising, specifically when considering whether or not you can enjoy safer sex and reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. New York’s health department says yes; however, it differs from you about crowds:
“If two is company, then three (or more) is definitely a crowd. Large gatherings of any type are not safe during COVID-19. Close contact with multiple people should be avoided.”
If you absolutely can’t stop yourself, though, the NYC Department of Health advises “a face covering or mask. Maybe it’s your thing, maybe it’s not, but during COVID-19, wearing a face covering that covers your nose and mouth is a good way to add a layer of protection during sex. Heavy breathing and panting can spread the virus further.” But, the authority continues, “make it a little kinky. Be creative with sexual positions and physical barriers, like walls, that allow sexual contact while preventing close face-to-face contact.”
Which sounds about as sexy as getting sex advice from your dad. Conceivably if your club is outfitted with Lucite boxes with holes in them, a superaggressive HVAC system and masks, and no more than two people are allowed in a box at a time, you could have a great time. Good luck trying.
Making Porn Less Problematical
EUGENE, SIR: Did you see that they’re going to stop calling interracial porn interracial? Thoughts? — Chris
Dear Cross: I did see, and while I usually have little time for things that seem purely symbolic, this was one turn of events I didn’t expect from a multibillion-dollar industry that has seemed to run out of surprises. In all fairness, it’s just one company that is going to do so, but I find it a compelling response to the George Floyd protests and the Black Lives Matter demonstrations in our cities and in the industries in our cities.
Black porn stars don’t usually complain about being Black porn stars, but when they do, as they did recently in a piece by former porn star Aurora Snow, they let fly. About pay and the unsurprisingly shitty treatment they’ve received at the hands of an industry that needs them to exist.
A discussion that needs to be had from a labor perspective alone, for sure.