The artist has always been a sex symbol of sorts… but what is it about artists that makes them so seductive, despite their tendency to be, ya know, selfish egomaniac drug addicts? Read my essay for New York Magazine HERE :)
My new Breathless for Vogue lists the 10 things I learned about sex and love in 2014. Spoiler alert: Kissing is the gateway drug to sex, and men look like shit after 30. Read more HERE :)
So, an update in the saga of my very drawn-out and pathetic break-up: my ex has proposed going to couples therapy. Yay? But like, does couples therapy actually work? Can it make me less of an emotional cavewoman (as I’ve been told I am)? Or is the whole situation just embarrassing? Read my latest Breathless column for Vogue to find out HERE :)
You might know a lot about sex, but you don’t know everything. Below are 20 of my favorite weird truths that I found on the internet about sex that are guaranteed to either turn you on, gross you out, or at least give you a serious sexual reality check.
1. Harvard University now offers a class called “What What in the Butt: Anal Sex 101.” No, that’s not a lie–the workshop is offered in conjunction with the Ivy League university’s Sex Week, and is intended to help students practice healthy and pleasurable anal sex. How cool is that?? You can read more about it here.
2. Guys, your worst fear is a reality: the penis gradually shrinks with age.
3.There is more to the clitoris than the eye can see. The clitoris is actually close to four inches in length, however three fourths of it is inside body. And the clitoris actually grows throughout a woman’s life. After menopause it can grow 2.5 times larger than it was during the teenage years. (We win!)
4. Masturbation is healthy for you! For example, it’s good for stress management, it’s good for your pelvic muscles, it releases endorphins, it lowers the risk of type-2 diabetes and of prostate cancer, it prevents cervical infections in women, and it helps you fall asleep! Why not add a healthy dose of masturbation to your daily kale salad?!
5. Oh, also, masturbating is one of the most effective natural ways to cure period cramps. (Cheaper than Advil.)
6. Eating semen can make you less depressed! Or, at least it’s packed full of natural mood-enhancers, like prolactin, oxytocin, serotonin and estrone, which are natural antidepressants.
7. The word “vagina” comes from the Latin root meaning “sheath for a sword.” (As a half lesbian, I am OFFENDED by this!)
8. Scary (but also kind of funny): Seventy-five percent of Malawians believe that homosexuality is a “Western invention.”
9. Roughly half of Americans lose their virginity by the age of 17, but 10% stay virgins after the age of 24.
10. Depressing: The American Psychiatric Association listed homosexuality as a mental illness until 1973.
Pic by Stacey Mark
11. 46% of Israel’s Arab citizens say they would be bothered by having a gay couple as their neighbors.
12. 9 Viagra tablets are sold every second. (I wonder if this affects the sale of lube?)
13. A quick kiss burns about 2-3 calories, whereas more passionate kiss burns 5 or more calories, depending on the duration and intensity. So basically if you’re not using tongue kissing is not dietetically worth you time.
14. Unsettling: Over the course of two weeks, a single human male produces enough sperm to impregnate every fertile woman on the planet.
15. 75% of Japanese women own a vibrator, but the average worldwide is only 47%.
16. Duh: Most women get hornier than usual right before their period.
17. Weird: A woman is more likely to consider committing adultery during ovulation than at any other time in her menstrual cycle.
18. 1 in 10 European babies is conceived in an IKEA bed.
19. Some women cum during childbirth.
20. Ending on a sad note: Earlier this month, UK porn was heavily censored–specifically BDSM porn, noooo! The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations introduced a series of seemingly arbitrary moral restrictions on the pornography produced and sold in the UK. Some of the sex acts now banned from British porn are: spanking, caning, aggressive whipping, penetration by any object “associated with violence”, physical or verbal abuse (regardless if it’s consensual), urolagnia (known as “water sports”), role-playing as non-adults, physical restrain, humiliation, female ejaculation, strangulation, facesitting. Read more about this idiotic and moralistic censorship here.
I love getting recommendations about things to watch, read, listen to and look at from my friends and the people I respect. There’s just so much content in the world (aka on the internet) these days, and it can get so overwhelming that rather than consuming anything worthwhile, we just end up staring at Instagram instead. This is why a little guidance is often helpful. So, even thought you didn’t ask, I’m offering myself as your internet guide for the day. (You’re welcome.) Below are five things that I’ve seen/listened to/read in the past week that either made me smile, made me smarter, or blew mind :)
1. Gore Vidal on 60 Minutes
My spirit animal Gore Vidal–the incomparable writer, essayist, playwright and critic–was the master of being highly intelligent, entertaining, funny and provocative all at the same time. If only everyone (or at least me) had those skillz! I recently watched a profile of Vidal from a 1975 episode of the TV show “60 Minutes.” The piece follows him to parties in Italy, on an American TV circuit, and sees him talking about everything from sex to politics to celebrity to the benefits of being a slut. It’s only 16 minutes long, and you can watch it HERE. (And if that’s not enough, there’s a full length documentary about him on Netflix now that I also recommend!)
2. Bret Easton Ellis talks with Rose McGowan
If you haven’t listened to the Bret Easton Ellis podcast, then you should, because it’s incredible. It’s predominantly Bret having conversations with interesting/indie filmmakers and artists about film and culture, and practically everything that comes out of Bret’s mouth makes my brain and heart flutter. (He also has a very sexy voice.) So many of the podcasts are good that I was having trouble choosing one to recommend, but last night I listened to his chat with the actress-turned-director Rose McGowan, and it was so interesting. Admittedly, I was not a huge fan of McGowan’s before listening to the podcast, but I’ve been converted. In their chat, the two largely discuss gender politics (both in film and in real life), dynamic female characters in film (and the lack thereof), the male gaze, feminism, and my fave film of late, Nymphomaniac. Listen to the podcast below.
3. Rebecca Solnit on “mansplaining”
By now you’ve probably heard the term “mansplaining”–meaning, when a man feels the need to explain something to a woman in a patronizing and condescending way, even when it’s clear that the woman knows more about the topic under discussion than the man. (We’ve all been there!) Well, the now famous essay that subsequently spawned the term mansplaining was written by the wonderful Rebecca Solnit, and it’s as hysterically funny as it is enlightening. Read it HERE.
4. High Maintenance
Is High Maintenance everyone’s favorite show? It’s mine! If you’ve been living under a rock, High Maintenance is a comedy web show about a weed dealer, and each episode is a hysterically precise character study of a different New York person, or group of people. Below is my favorite episode. It makes me laugh and cry, and is a total cute alert! (p.s. because of the show’s atypical format, it’s OK to not watch the episodes chronologically.)
5. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on why we should all be feminists
Ya know how in the Beyonce song “Flawless” there’s that part where she samples a woman talking about feminism, which starts with “We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller…” and ends with “Feminist: the person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes”? Well, that sample is taken from a Ted talk titled titled “We should all be feminists,” given by one of the most amazing women in the world, the renowned Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Above is her speech from which the song samples in its entirety. It’s illuminating, entertaining, funny and deeply personal. I really recommend that everyone watch this, especially boys–feminism is not a girl issue, it’s an everyone issue!