Reuters writer Belinda Goldsmith had a great roundup yesterday of “The Women’s Games”, which is what many are calling the 2012 Summer Olympics (which — for those of you living under a rock — just wrapped up this past weekend in London). Here’s a quick summary of the important stats, but the whole article is worth a read.
Last October, when Jeff Ragsdale, an out-of-work actor and stand-up comedian, got dumped by his girlfriend — the kind of breakup that puts your heart through the blender — he decided to crowd-source his loneliness. He posted flyers all around Lower Manhattan that read, “If anyone wants to talk about anything, call me… Jeff, One Lonely Guy.” His cellphone number was listed at the bottom of the flyer in little tabs that strangers could tear off — anyone who’s familiar with New York will be used to seeing these kinds of flyers offering dog-walking services or futons for sale, etc.
We have a dream that one day, people will deal with sex rationally and reasonably. Sure, we know that everyone loses it a little when they’re head over heels in lust — but we’re talking about something much deeper and more ingrained and more screwed up. Like orthodox Jewish men blurring their glasses so they don’t have to look at immodest women… or men visiting prostitutes for emotional intimacy… or the U.K. making it illegal to own depictions of sexual acts (like fisting) that are perfectly legal to engage in (just ask Christian Grey).
Article: Top 10 funny sex scenes
Photo Credit: Everyday Should Be Saturday
Funny sex scenes — at least, those that are meant to make you laugh — are often our favorite kind. Ironically, they tend to portray much more realistic onscreen sex than their serious, sultry counterparts. In funny sex scenes, you get weirdness, kink, awkwardness, jealousy, fantasy — oh yeah, and condoms. For some reason, the only time you see latex onscreen is when the sex is supposed to be funny. Here are ten of our favorite funny sex scenes — though not all of them were initially intended to be funny (we’re looking at you, Clive Owen). By the way, if you’re wondering where AMERICAN PIE and PORKY’S are: We took the liberty of limiting this list to scenes that made us laugh. And we’re not — nor have we ever been — 14-year-old boys.
A friend just emailed us a link to this collection of awesome (and dirty!) graffiti from Pompeii. We know it seems like it couldn’t possibly be real, but Pompeiana.org seems like a legitimate academic site. (They describe themselves as “an online resource for all things Pompeian… a place for original research by scholars in the fields of art, archaeology, architecture and classics.” And the site is packed with stuffy academic papers — seems like an awful lot of work to go to for a prank.) And besides, Pompeii is known for its phallic and erotic artifacts (and, we suppose now, its poop jokes).
The web is littered with Fifty Shades of Grey parodies, but we think that “Fanny Merkin” (a.k.a. Andrea Shaffer, author of Great Philosophers Who Failed at Love) is the first one to get out a book-length parody. Yes, he wrote an entire novel that’s pretty much a line-by-line parody of Fifty Shades — it digs fun at the sex scenes, at the brand-name dropping, at the writing, at the murmuring, at the meandering inner monologues and most especially at Anastasia’s various inner voices. It’s called Fifty Shames of Earl Grey and, yes, there’s a grey tie on the cover.
A few weeks back — in a post about how clutter can be as big an issue in relationships as money or sex — we mentioned a forthcoming book, Significant Objects: 100 Extraordinary Stories About Everything. Well, the book just came out yesterday! So we’d like to tell you a little more about it.
A little more than a month ago we here at EMandLO.com (that’d be me, i.e. Lo, and Em) conducted a poll called “Vulva or Vagina?” Readers had two options to choose from (natch):
Vulva: If we’re talking about female external genitalia, this is the anatomically correct and accurate term. (Plus, it sounds nicer.)
Vagina: That’s what everyone calls it. It’s common practice, common knowledge. Nobody calls it vulva. To do so is pretentious.
Article: Top 10 directors not afraid of nudes
Photo credit: mojeopinie.pl
If you spend a lot of time analyzing movie sex scenes like we do, you might find yourself rolling your eyes at how many onscreen couples manage to have sex without ever showing any skin… or who fall asleep with a sheet covering them just so… or who always put on a shirt and underpants when they get out of bed to pee, no matter how raunchy things just got. Where’s the nudity? Where’s the raunch? Well, if you’re looking to really steam things up this summer, check out the Hot Summer Nights series: every Friday and Saturday night in August, there is a triple bill of films designed to do just that, from Y TU MAMÁ TAMBIÉN to DIARY OF A NYMPHOMANIAC. For further feverish research on your own time, you might want to look up the work of the following 10 directors who are very, shall we say, comfortable with onscreen nudity. And we mean the real kind — not the CGI kind. Only after we finished this list did we realize it was entirely male, which we suppose shouldn’t surprise us — after all, most of the nudity is female. But we dug up male nudity — or, at least, equal-opportunity nudity — where we could. You’re welcome!
This week, we go from conception to being breastfed to leaving the nest to death — it’s the circle of life!
We’re always a little skeptical when sex research is sponsored by a commercial product — as opposed to, say, an academic institution. That said, the commercially driven surveys tend to have a lot of money and resources behind them, and every now and then, interesting stuff comes out of them. Take the new survey from Trojan — sure, it includes not particularly helpful stats, like the fact that 70% of people “are open to trying a new condom designed to enhance orgasmic pleasure.” Oh really, Trojan? And we don’t suppose you happen to know anything about where we could find a condom like that, do you?
While Em was reading her daughter a bedtime story the other night, it occurred to her — because she has read the same stories hundreds of times and thus it is possible to think about potential posts for this blog while reading — that a swift exchange of contact info would have been a much easier way for the Prince to stay in touch with Cinderella. And if the Prince and Cinderella forgot to exchange digits before midnight, then a few minutes of Internet stalking — Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, et. al. — would have fixed that. It’s perhaps not quite as romantic as visiting every woman in the land with a discarded shoe, but it’s a lot more convenient. Also, less gross. (Hello, athlete’s foot. Google that, Prince Charming.)
image: “Self Portrait with My Son 2012″ by Jade Bealle
Because all mamas are hot in their own way, photographer Jade Beall’s new project “A Beautiful Body” invites mothers, both new and old, to celebrate their imperfectly perfect bodies. In a world of airbrushing, Photoshopping and self-loathing, how refreshing! In the coming year she’ll be hitting the road with her now five-month-old son, her partner and her dog in an RV, taking nude and semi-nude portraits of as many women as she can who are interested in participating (and there are a lot!). We recently asked her to tell us more…
Are women’s and men’s fantasy lives vastly different, or are they basically the same except for a few variations on theme and frequency? We suppose it depends on who you ask and what they already believe. Because people’s prior beliefs about how women and men approach sex can really affect the way they interpret research on the matter.
OK, so maybe love is a strong word for North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un’s marriage. But who knows what goes on behind closed doors? In Scotland, doors might be opening for gay couples who wish to marry. Which is pretty much the last country we would have expected it from (except maybe North Korea… and Iran… OK, OK, the Scots aren’t that bad). But while it’s getting gradually easier to marry a same-sex partner across the globe (to the moon and back, even — thanks, Sally Ride), it’s not getting any easier to be a VP in the U.S. (or to get away with cheating if you’re a celebrity, for that matter).
Article: A musical history of wooing women
CDZA (short for Collective Cadenza) is a group of mostly Juilliard-trained music geeks (and we use that term in the most loving and respectful way) that “creates musical video experiments” — in other words, fun viral vids that play upon all sorts of musical themes and genres (think “Evolution of Dance” but with live musicians and no dancing). Ten months ago they created their inaugural “History of Lyrics That Aren’t Lyrics” (i.e. Sha na na na, doobie doobie doo, etc). Then a few months ago they started producing these videos regularly, one every other Tuesday. Some recent examples: “Mark Zuckerberg: The Musical” (“This is the dawning of the page that you share with us”) and “Aces of Basses” (a literal tribute to the Swedish pop sensation using five acoustic upright basses).
“When we take a few moments away from horror and tragedy — not to mention politics and anger — to prove that humor and fantasy survive, there will be one question on moviegoing America’s mind this month… Who would win a fight between Spider-Man and Batman?”
Image from Em & Lo’s sex manual, SEX: How to Do Everything
You’ve probably heard of the Coital Alignment Technique. It was all the rage a decade or so ago. But have you ever actually tried it? Have you tried it again recently? It takes patience. It takes practice. And it goes against everything you’ve seen in porn. But since when did porn cater to what women want? Beyond just following the specific steps below, mastering the C.A.T. requires a philosophical readjustment. Abandon your assumptions that intercourse automatically means a piston-like motion, lots of flailing about and a rush to climax. For the C.A.T., you’ve got to take what some might call a more “feminine” approach to sex: think small subtle movement, full-body contact with a focus on the clitoris and the pelvic mounds and a Buddhist-like repetition of steps that may very well get her closer to Zen (i.e. orgasm) better than any other hands-free intercourse position out there.
Yes, it’s a serious question. An ancient technique called karezza — based on the Italian word carezza, for caress — is coming back in vogue with therapists as a means of addressing more modern sex problems. Karezza refers to intercourse that eschews orgasms for both parties and focuses on attachment and affection. Serious devotees claim that it can overcome sex addiction, female sexual dysfunction, erectile dysfunction and sexual boredom, and extend the honeymoon period of a relationship for, well, forever. Which sounds to us like a bit of a Sophie’s choice: Would you be willing to give up orgasms — or, at least, intentional orgasms — for the rest of your life in order to have a permanently awesome sex life?
Squid have sex for three hours, STDs can cause a rise in foot fetishes, Domino’s Pizza wants you associate date rape with extra cheese, and Charlie Sheen likes to tweet during sex. Welcome to an edition of Naked News guaranteed to make you feel like your sex life is vanilla — and to make you feel OK with that.
Today marks the second weekly installment of the Onion’s new web series, Sex House — a parody of The Real World/Big Brother/Glass House-type reality shows that pretend to be about something other than throwing a bunch of people into a Sartre-esque No Exit living sitch with a bunch of raging hormones and an endless supply of cheap vodka. It’s the first series from the Onion Digital Studio, which according to the Huffington Post, will focus exclusively on non-news parodies. The other three web series airing on its YouTube channel this summer include Lake Dredge Appraisal (think Antiques Road Show meets 1980s public-access TV), Horrifying Planet (think National Geographic meets When Animals Attack meets American’s Funniest Home Videos) and Troublehacking with Drew Cleary (think vloggers with delusions of grandeur).
Jacqueline Samuels has become an overnight sensation. Last month she opened “The Snuggery,” a little cabin in Penfield, NY, where she offers private cuddle sessions for $60 an hour: no nudity, absolutely no sex, just platonic touch that she says studies have shown can have a positive effect on your mental and physical well-being. (She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Brain and Cognitive Science from the University of Rochester and is currently completing her Master’s Degree in Social Work). Well, the Internets eat this kind of thing up, and within days, she went global, appearing on CNN (without her knowledge) and getting inquiries from abroad. Apparently the world needs a hug. So we contacted Samuels via her tasteful little website and asked her about it directly:
Article: It's not you; it's your clutter
When is an item a significant object worth collecting or displaying on the mantlepiece — or saving to sell on eBay at a later date — and when is it clutter? And if it’s clutter, is it threatening your relationship? The subject of household clutter has been on our minds lately. Em was at a reading last week for the forthcoming book Significant Objects, a literary experiment that began its life on eBay. Basically, the editors (New York Times Magazine writer Rob Walker and Em’s old friend Josh Glenn of HiLoBrow.com) wanted to see if attaching a fictional backstory to a tchotchke would increase its value (turns out it did). We’ll write more on the book itself when it comes out next month.
In my senior year of high school, I (Lo) read The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, the first in a three-book series by vampire-genre goddess Anne Rice (who was a fave of mine at the time), writing under the pen name A. N. Roquelaure. Except instead of vampires, she was playing around with fairytale characters in a crazy BDSM world with bondage, whips, suspension, sticky-itchy honey-glazes on genitals, you name it! Her Beauty trilogy from more than 25 years ago was the original “Fifty Shades of Grey” series, filled with kinky sex on almost every page — except Rice’s was actually well written and, if memory serves me correctly, a lot more hardcore.