"Leaving sex to the feminists is like letting your dog vacation at the taxidermist." -Matt BarryYou can feel it coming. You look up; there he is--and oooh he is so sexy. You look to the right; a mirror--and oooh you are so sexy. The music is sexy, the sheets are sexy, the carpet is sexy. You could sop this man up with a biscuit and lick the bowl. You exfoliated, pumiced, shaved, oiled, plucked, waxed, toned, shampooed, conditioned, moisturized and even did fifteen minutes of pilates. The only thing you’ve ingested all day is a Green Machine Naked juice and half a banana. You're in fighting form. It’s been months. You like him, so you decide that waiting a requisite three months to make sure you really felt something may not be enough, so you wait five. More Rules than Sex and the City, but you figure for once you’ll give it a try. You’re about to be rewarded for your virtue and patience. The music is great; you feel like you’re in a late night VH1 Soul video. Jodeci. 1993 Jodeci. And he’s amazing, better than you ever thought. You’re so hot you feel faint. Your head feels like your neck just boiled over. Your lungs feel like they’re encased in armor. A lone tear slips down your cheek. You can't believe what's about to happen. Since you can so rarely get to where you want to go manually these days, you’re thankful for this man. You appreciate this man. You’re excited about what he’s about to do for you. It’s coming, it’s coming, it’s coming. You even say aloud that it’s coming, following which, he [understandably] takes a cue to follow your lead. It’s coming, it’s coming. Yes…yes…yeees...no? Suddenly all motion is suspended. Mr. ‘I Got This’ is on his back, smirking to himself, smiling at you, putting a hand distractedly on your shoulder, just enough to say “we’re making contact so you’re definitely not a whore” without further overheating himself. Because he, of course, just had an orgasm. You had…a good time. There’s nothing wrong with "a good time". I’m not of the school of woman that gets absolutely livid when she doesn’t climax—annoyed, yes, but livid, no. I’m of the live in the moment and have a best-of average. But men are taught to expect an orgasm from the time they begin having sex. Women, conversely, are fundamentally taught not to expect very much at all. Instead, we’re guided towards looking forward to the icings and cherries of sex—the foreplay, the intimacy, and of course, the ever-popular being held afterwards. Sadly, I know women who engage in sex solely for the opportunity to be kissed and held afterward. Of course, my gut tells me that these same women lie there like child prostitutes during the whole thing, but the fact remains that sex is not something that’s wildly exciting for them. It brings a whole new life to the saying “men get laid, but women get screwed”. The thing is, these are intelligent ladies who know what it takes to get off. These are not girls who learned the mechanics of the birds and bees in prepubescent bunk bed trysts in their parents’ house before stumbling out into the world with immature ideas about lovemaking. We are educated, brilliant women who waited until we were old enough and informed enough to be in touch with our bodies, at one with our sexuality before we invited a man to be a part of it. We, of all people, should know what it takes to make it to the big O. And that, as Ro recently suggested, may be the problem. Because we’re so educated about sex and so conversant about what makes it good, is the passion not slipping under the radar with all of our practical insight? Is all the sophistication and highbrow knowledge we’ve acquired about sex making us unable to fully enjoy it? Are we too smart to come? If you ever played the piano or rode a bike, you learned that with some of life’s most gratifying accomplishments there comes a process of learning the basics and subsequently replacing those learned nuts and bolts with emotion, sailing on instinct and feeling. True genius, after all, lives there and not in topical education. And so despite all the intricacies we’ve come to understand about making love, it’s not rocket science nor is it the SAT. It always has been and always will be about the feelings behind it. No one who thinks hard about sex while they’re doing it is going to enjoy themselves as much as they could if they were able to release the tension and just be. The fact is that, often, knowledge creates inhibition. And inhibition has absolutely no place in the proverbial bedroom. While I see a huge problem with women who are inhibited or have some issues revolving around sex that prevent them from climaxing, I’m also inclined to throw some blame at men in the situation. Because men have proportionately more sex than women, I’m of the belief that they sometimes opt to treat us like a number and not a name. Word to the wise: what worked for Tracy might not work for me. Just because most of your ex-girlfriends got bored after 20 minutes and pretended to come doesn’t mean you can close up shop with me when the clock hits the 21 minute mark. I am totally unashamed of the fact that I’m a 25-30 minute kind of girl. If you can’t hold it together that long, it’s not my problem. Anyhow, men are guilty of applying their “moves” that they think are so fabulous to every sexual situation rather than tailoring their efforts to the person at hand. That doesn’t help the situation. What also doesn’t help the situation is women who consistently fake. When you fake they think they did a good job. It’s just like training a puppy, just like giving Toto a bone for peeing right on the freshly-cleaned carpet. And what sense does that make? And then the other major problem is a preoccupation with the relationship as an entity, as in where it’s going and what the sex “means”. This is the most valid, because it’s the hardest to discount. Intelligent women who are out of the promiscuous/experimental stage of their lives have sex less and less for the fun of it and because it’s readily available. The more experience we gather in life, we find that do want it to mean something. We realize more than ever that we hold tremendous value within us that we’re not [always] willing to sell down the creek for a little stimulation. We want the men we take to bed to know that, and if any little part of us senses that they either don’t grasp or disregard this fact, it can take us out of commission sexually. Because sex relies so heavily on confidence and self-esteem, when that’s rattled so is your good time. It’s hard to get yourself in an orgasm place with a man you’re not sure values or cares about you enough. I’m not knocking sex without a finish. A good romp in the hay with no real completion is, after all, the equivalent of a 15 minute scalp massage. Far be it from me to come down hard on scalp massages. But sex is supposed to be something that both parties enjoy to the fullest, and I know I’m not alone in my silent-but-deadly resentment resulting from a man’s untamed elation following sex that didn’t benefit me the way it benefited him. It’s never fair that sex not provide us equal thrills with men, and it’s far from right whenever sex is something women feel they have to do to achieve intimacy. Maybe the next time it’s just us and them, we should try to take ourselves out of the moment. Forget about Cosmo and Glamour and Kama Sutra and The [New] Joy of Sex 1992 Edition. Forget about how smart we are and what’s going to happen afterwards, and if they’re going to act right and how much they like us. Forget about the procedural technicalities of touching them here and doing this and that… just make it about your pleasure. Make it about how we feel about them, how they feel about us right then in that moment—make it something that comes from our hearts and not our heads. No pun intended. The point here is to get all women to a place where we expect our own pleasure, not just to be a source of someone else’s. Getting kissed and coddled and held is wonderful, and if that’s truly your cup of tea, more power to you. But honestly, that exchange is not fair. If you’re bringing the ultimate gratification to someone, they should be doing the same for you—whatever it takes to get there. Doing your part to let go is important, but so is a man doing his part to help you get there. So no more freebies, ladies. Let’s truly make this the Year of Yes. Every guy you take up with should understand your position: yes, charity is the new sexy, but sex is not the new charity.