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Date archive for: April 2012

Indecent Exposure

I hate things that make me sound like I’m 90 years old. And that’s what online porn is doing. Beckoning our teenagers from their laptops, iPhones, and tablets, X-rated Web sites are causing me to curse technology and pine for the good old days when smut knew its place: on the pages of a shrink-wrapped girlie magazine on the periodicals shelf of your neighborhood 7-Eleven.

Back in my day, we pored over dog-eared Playboys, passed around Penthouse letters, and stared agog at warbly VHS tapes of Deep Throat — all lifted from our parents’ stash. Or our friends’ parents’ stash. Or our parents’ friends’ stash.

We had to work hard to see porn, and I’m not complaining; we had quite the work ethic. But today’s teens have to work hard not to see it. It’s free, it’s abundant, and it’s a single click away. Most of it is explicit, and much of it (what? I conducted a study) is so in-your-face graphic that you have to wonder if it’s intended to turn off the viewer.

Our teens — and, in some cases, ick, our preteens — are looking at this stuff. It’s not a question of if or when. They. Are. Looking. And how can you blame them? It’s a fascinating alien world. A big-box toy store. A freshly stocked cookie jar. I think it’s healthy for teens to explore their sexuality, and at least on-screen you can’t catch anything. Or create anyone.

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Coregasm

I feel a lot of different things when I exercise: tired, resentful, inflexible. Hungry, gangly, territorial. Sometimes I feel excited about the bowl of Fruit Loops that I will suck down guilt-free when I get home, and occasionally I feel sexy, like a badass backup dancer in a Beyoncé video. Most often — about 15 minutes into any given workout, and again at 24 minutes, and 37 — I feel that I’ve had enough and that it really should be over by now.

Here’s what I never, ever feel when I exercise: toe-curling ecstasy.

Researchers at Indiana University report that some women actually experience orgasms while working out. A study at the school’s Center for Sexual Health Promotion surveyed 124 women who claim to have been sent into paroxysms of pleasure while exercising — during spinning or yoga class, in the weight room or swimming pool like in one of the intex pools you can find online, and while climbing poles or ropes (which makes me picture the word “climb-ax,” which makes me giggle stupidly).

The media is calling these episodes “coregasms” because they’re most often brought on by abdominal exercises — especially multiple sets of rigorous crunches. But let’s call them “gymnasms” because it’s crazy fun to say; try it.

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