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  • Dirty Talk: The Other Oral Sex

    Dirty Talk: The Other Oral Sex

    By Ambrose Diaz

    Even for people who are sexually open, the act of talking dirty — or ‘erotic talk’ as most of the experts call it — can be a bit of a stumbling block.

    It achieved infamy on a late, great Seinfeld episode when Jerry tried unsuccessfully to talk dirty with his girlfriend, asking her if she was wearing the “panties that your mother laid out for you.”

    In an effort to overcome that kind of awkwardness, here are some tips on how to talk the talk. Apprehensive? Well don’t worry — erotic talk is really nothing to fear. It’s a very healthy way of sharing an erotic experience. As Dr. Carol Queen, author of Exhibitionism for the Shy says, it’s just another form of sexual communication.

    “Today I can ask for exactly what I want sexually, and learn my partner’s preferences, via direct questioning and fantasy talk. Communicating this way will maintain — even heighten — our level of arousal.”

    Overcoming Oral Bashfulness
    If the very thought of erotic talk makes you want to take a lifelong vow of silence, there are a few baby steps you can take. Dr. Queen suggests working on your shyness by talking out loud to yourself while you’re masturbating. Don’t worry if you can’t muster up a coherent sentence — just making sounds is a good start. As Dr. Queen says, “If you think erotic words or phrases while you coo and gasp, you will find that as you get more turned on, the words will superimpose themselves onto the sounds.”

    Just Express Yourself
    It’s important not to blow erotic talk out of proportion. You don’t have to prepare notes or talking points on cue cards. At its core, you just have to express yourself. Giving and receiving feedback during sex is the best starting point to engaging in erotic talk. Saying that you really like something that your lover is doing counts as erotic talk, so repeat after me: “I love it when you do that.”

    Move from general phrases like the one above to more specific phrases like, “I get so hot when you lick my nipples…” or whatever it is you like having licked.

    Let’s Play ‘Optometrist’
    Asking your partner questions while you’re having sex is another effective erotic talk technique. Just like when you’re having your eyes examined by the optometrist, ask your partner if (s)he likes it better “like this” or “like this.” When they tell you which method they prefer, ask them why. Bingo! You’re engaged in an erotic conversation.

    As you continue, keep communicating. Find out what you can do to make your partner happier by asking, “What can I do to make you come?” My optometrist has never actually asked me that question, but I always wish she would…

    Vocalizing how you’re feeling, how you want to feel, and what you want to do is the very essence of erotic talk. Once you’re comfortable with that, you can branch out into more fantasy-filled conversations where you don’t necessarily have to be talking about what’s actually taking place in the bedroom. When you use words to express whatever your fantasies are, you can place yourself in absolutely any erotic situation you want.

    Phone It In
    When you can’t, for whatever reason, be in the same room as your partner, put your erotic talk to good use, let your fingers do the walking, and engage in the some phone sex. It’s the safest sex you’ll ever have and as Bonnie Gabriel writes in her book, The Fine Art of Erotic Talk, “A telephone tryst can serve as a vehicle to keep your romantic feelings alive, to enhance intimacy, to build erotic anticipation, and to fuel your sexual fantasies.”

    Gabriel suggests a number of ways to phone it in, like having an erotic conversation every night before bed, setting up the phone call with an anticipatory playful email during the day, and including erotic details that are “specific to your partner and not just elements of sex in general.” (Best to use your Hotmail account rather than the office email system for this one — Ed)

    When it comes time for your orgasm (eargasm?), Gabriel says “If you find yourself becoming too aroused to continue talking, express your growing excitement through your breathing, sighing, and other passionate sounds. Remember, your voice is the only line of connection with your lover here, and you want to keep that line flowing with sexual energy.”

    And when you’re done, say a little prayer for Alexander Graham Bell. If he only knew what he started…

  • Is Sex with Strangers Liberating?

    Is Sex with Strangers Liberating?

    By Jenna Stone

    It’s a popular perception and a theme common in pop culture and it goes like this:

    Hooking up with a stranger leads to hot, no-holds-barred, button-popping, get-out-the-rug-burn-ointment sex…

    …Clothes-tearing, furniture-busting, sweaty, walking-funny-the-next-day sex. Sex with a stranger is supposedly waaaay hotter than sex with a long-term partner. You know, sex with a long-term partner: boring, repetitive, now he’s going to do that thing with his tongue again because I said I liked it that one time sex.

    This is why the theme is so often paired with the cheating theme. Perhaps the most famous movie example is the ecstatic shagging between Dan (Michael Douglas) and crazy Alex (Glenn Close) in Adrian Lyne’s Fatal Attraction. (Lyne, who also directed Indecent Proposal and Unfaithful, is clearly a student-slash-fan of cheating). That Alex woman could boil a mean rabbit and she was a great lay. What’s not to love?

    Cheating isn’t an absolutely necessary part of the equation, though. Stranger-banging is still regarded as wilder than committed-relationship-banging regardless of whether you’re actually in a relationship or not. It’s why we often have the best sex of our lives during the first three months of any relationship, when everything is new and exciting. One way to keep the novelty alive is to do it with new people.

    A recent study released by the UK’s Dating Direct found that more than one in three single women confessed to meeting someone for no-strings-attached sex — which is sort of a broader definition of what we mean here.

    After all, once you have sex with someone more than once, they’re not technically a “stranger” anymore but can still be wild and new. The line lies somewhere between “That was great. What’s your name anyway?” and “Get your cold feet off my side of the bed. Thanks. G’night.”

    Those who don’t quite have the guts to do it can read about it. It’s a subject we have found enticing since Lady Chatterley got down with the gardener. Heck, adultery gets name-checked in the Old Testament. French journalist Catherine Millet caused a scandal with her 2001 memoir, La Vie Sexuelle de Catherine M., an account of her doing it with pretty much everything that moved over the course of 30 years.

    More recently, UK memoirist Suzanne Portnoy made a name for herself chronicling her sexual awakening after ending a 10-year marriage in her book The Butcher, The Baker, The Candlestick Maker. Her newest book, The Not So Invisible Woman, reveals more of Portnoy’s exploits and encounters with “a different man each time, sometimes multiple men.”The entertainment publicist and single mother of two has said that time is one issue. With a career and kids, how is one supposed to cultivate a new relationship? She also says, “I love that first kiss, first touch and first sexual experience with a new partner. I dress up, my body feels heightened and it turns me on. You just don’t get that in a long term relationship.”And that’s the thing, isn’t it? We feel that for something to be “exciting” it has to be “the first” which isn’t necessarily true. Skydivers probably get excited every time they jump. Also, there’s this idea that there are no “firsts” with a long-term partner.Recently I was reading an article in which the author discussed the one-night stand in such a manner, extolling it as a situation in which you can really let go and get wild, because you don’t have to worry about seeing this person again. And I thought, “Yes, that is a pervasive view… but why?”

    “When people are in relationships,” says Cory Silverberg, a certified sex educator and founding member of the Toronto-based, co-operatively owned sex shop Come As You Are, “and they say they want the sex to be better or hotter, usually what they mean is they want it to be the way it used to be. One of the hottest things about sex is the unknown, the mystery. It’s either the mystery of what someone is going to be like in bed or, once you’ve had sex with someone, the mystery of what’s going to happen next.”

    Silverberg muses that part of the problem is how easy it is to habituate our sexual practices and fall into patterns. “So, people think ‘I would never have anal sex with my partner but maybe if I had sex with a sex trade worker and I was paying I’d want to try that.’ We habituate our behaviors and set boundaries and then treat them as though they aren’t negotiable. And we do it in a way that is unspoken. People don’t talk about this stuff a lot. It’s just established in the beginning of the relationship.”

    But people change over time and if you’re going to spend years with the same person you’re going to want different things. You don’t watch the same television shows over and over again for 40 years. You might not have the same taste in books now that you had 10 years ago. You don’t still wear the same ridiculous platform shoes you wore in 1998.So why should we be expected to do the same things in bed over and over again, right? But the problem then is you have to ask for what you want and most of us are simply not comfortable doing that. (Might I recommend drinking? Or maybe finger puppets…)Silverberg says, “With our partners we are often much more worried about judgment. If I’m going to have a one-night stand, what do I care what that person thinks of my fantasy about wearing a dog collar or having sex with my ninth grade math teacher? Whereas exposing those fantasies to my partner who I’m thinking about building a life with and whose family I’ve met might feel like a greater risk.”Interesting. After all, one might think that if you’re going to talk to anyone about your sex life it should be your partner, the person you supposedly share the most with in this area and the one person who would, hopefully, not judge you. It’s the person who has seen you in all sorts of states of vulnerability.

    Well one might think that but one would probably be wrong. Silverberg says, “We can assume that most of us feel some shame about our sexual desires. Exposing something that I feel shame about to someone I’ve opened my heart to is a big deal.

    “If I expose my fantasies about being dominated and wearing a dress to a total stranger, the worst that can happen is they can say no. But for a partner to say no can feel like a bigger rejection.

    “They might just be rejecting the idea of having sex with me while I’m wearing a dress but I can feel that as a rejection of me as a whole person. So, there’s a greater emotional risk and a greater practical risk. So, we don’t do it. Instead when we look for newness, we go out and we cheat.”

    We cheat because we’re chickenshits, which makes perfect sense.

    “We have this incredibly untapped well of eroticism inside of ourselves,” Silverberg continues. “We have all sorts of fantasies and desires we don’t expose to anyone. And that’s really what we should be doing. But we go the safe route because we’re scared.”

    And so we cheat. It’s AMAZING how many people cheat.

    One way to avoid this is to have some sort of discourse. If you’re going to be in a monogamous relationship for a long time you’re going to have to check in once in a while.

    “Hey, is that thing I do with my tongue still working for you?”

    “Actually, I’m glad you asked. Not really. And I was wondering if you’d mind putting on these boxing trunks and this mouth guard…”

    See how easy that was?

    If you’re NOT in a relationship, there’s no real reason you can’t keep having (SAFER!) sex with random people. But you might eventually find yourself wanting more. After all, sex isn’t the only relationship first. There’s the first time you kick his sorry ass at Trivial Pursuit, the first time you laugh until you pee (just me?), your first vacation, first place together, first kid… life is full of firsts.

    You might find that, after a while, random sex gets old, even if it’s always with someone new.

  • Piercing for Pleasure

    Piercing for Pleasure

    By Lola Augustine Brown

    Tattoos aren’t the only ubiquitous bodywork out there these days.

    As piercing in general has become more mainstream, so has the piercing of people’s naughty bits.

    Today there are a myriad of ways you can pierce either your nipples or genitals in order to create a sexier aesthetic and increase the amount of sensation you receive in your most erogenous zones (and the sensations you give to others).

    It used to be that erotic piercings were only popular with punks and the S&M community but Daryl Nicholson, a piercer at New Tribe Tattoo and Piercing in Toronto says that nowadays, the seemingly most unlikely people come to get their genitals and nipples pierced.

    “Its all ages, all types, there is a really diverse group of people that want these piercings,” he says.

    Out of the Ordinary
    When Alicia Green* first heard another woman discussing her clitoral hood piercing she was initially horrified at the idea. “She kept telling me how fabulous it was and I just couldn’t believe it,” says Green. “But my mind started wandering and I asked her a million questions; four months later my curiosity overpowered my fear of needles and I went to get it done.”

    Getting her clitoral hood pierced “Hurt like a son of a bitch for a few minutes” but healed in three weeks and has given Green tons of pleasure both physically and mentally. The majority of genital piercings do heal very quickly. A clitoral hood piercing can be completely healed in six weeks. This is thanks to the increased blood flow in one’s nether regions. Most piercings anywhere on the body will heal within 2-3 months, though sometimes the process can take up to a year if there are factors such as ill health or other problems.

    New Sensations
    Knowing that she has a secret hidden in her undies is pretty thrilling for Green. “I am one of those people one would look at and never consider that I have hardware between my legs,” she says.

    Piercer Nicholson says that although plenty of 18-year-olds do come to get erotic piercings, it’s often the types you’d never expect, such as the 40-year-old-men in business suits who come to get both nipples pierced or older women looking to add a little zing to their marriages.

    Having her naughty piercing means that Green finds unexpected pleasure in the most mundane things, such as riding a bike or climbing stairs (especially if the bead on her clit ring is in the right place). “Not warning a partner prior to that first naked exploration can be pretty amusing,” she says. “I love that look of shock when they find the X that marks the spot.”

    Temporary Pleasures
    It isn’t just the permanent piercings that are growing in popularity. So-called ‘play piercings’ are temporary piercings often placed in patterns or designs. A common example is a “corset piercing,” for which multiple pairs of rings are inserted on either side of the spine, then laced up with ribbon to form a corset. These are something that Nicholson is being asked to do more of in the past year.

    There are degrees of play piercing and some people go deeper than others. While some people engage for aesthetic reasons, others just enjoy the sensation of being pierced. Google it and you’ll find images involving hypodermic needles. The ones we’re talking about are done using fine needles to avoid tissue damage and create minimal scarring. The piercings are usually taken out (by the piercer) the next day. Nicholson says that these are most commonly requested around fetish nights and for models doing erotic photo shoots.

    Fun for DIY Enthusiasts
    Many people also enjoy doing play piercings as part of kinky sex, and some even go as far as to do their own permanent piercings in the bedroom, although experts wouldn’t advise that anyone pierce something at home without expert supervision. Despite the fact it is not advised, the materials needed to do piercings and detailed instruction on how to perform them are readily available online.

    Sasha Vier had her nipples pierced by her boyfriend and says it was an incredibly hot experience. “He talked with a professional piercer about how to do it and bought everything that they’d use to do it in a piercing shop. All the equipment was sterile and my man did a fantastic job,” she says, “then we had hot sex while the endorphins were still charging around my body. Mmm.”

    However or whatever you get pierced, you need to take really good care of the wound as it can easily become infected while healing, which can cause scarring or disfigurement. Making use of that piercing too soon will delay healing and increase the length of time needed before you can truly get enjoyment form it.

    And, because your piercing is an open wound, you are more at risk of transmitting or receiving sexually transmitted infections. Remember kids, safety first!

    * Names changed for privacy

  • Booty Call Etiquette

    Booty Call Etiquette

    By Ambrose Diaz

    It’s time to check your ideas of morality and emotional involvement at the door because today we’re talking about a little thing called the Booty Call.

    The Booty Call lives in a lovely grey area somewhere between the one-night-stand and the relationship and serves to supply consenting adults with a high-energy sexual release without the baggage and time involved in dating.

    You probably won’t find the term Booty Call in the dictionary… yet. But it seems like the phrase has slowly crept into our common vernacular, so much so that there are already rules (both written and unwritten) governing how to behave.

    After conducting some strenuous research on the subject, I have gone through my field-notes in an attempt to supply you with nine simple rules about the Booty Call.

    1. Brunch is the Enemy of the Booty Call
    This may seem a little harsh but the one and only purpose of the Booty Call is to get off. Once you’re done, get up, get dressed and go home. If you’re having a Booty Call because you don’t want to sleep alone, you’re in dangerous territory and emotional involvement is lurking somewhere around the corner. If you end up sleeping over, there’s only one place for things to go and that’s brunch. Brunch is the enemy of the Booty Call. You didn’t make the call because you wanted to chat over a cup of coffee. Your friends can supply you with that.

    2. No Timetables
    So… you’ve called your Booty Call Cohort (BCC) every Saturday night for the past two months? Bad move! The key to successful Booty Calling is to keep things uncomplicated, relaxed and elastic. If you make the call on a schedule, things are going to get very stale very fast. And if you wanted stale sex, you would just go ahead and get married (he kids, he kids! — Ed.)

    3. No Meeting in Public
    Again, this may seem a little harsh, but this rule is definitely a good one to follow. Remember this: meeting your BCC in public is called “a date.” You and your BCC should only live in an erotic fantasy world that doesn’t exist outside of the bedroom.

    4. Look Good
    Yes, the sex is almost guaranteed. No, it’s not a date. But you’re still going to have to make an effort to look and smell good. Make sure your Booty Calls get accepted by staying on top of your outward appearance. After all, letting things slide with the way you present yourself is for those people in long-term relationships (what a comedian…– Ed).

    5. Expect Nothing
    The Booty Call should only be made (and accepted) by those who want to have sex at that moment. If your BCC stops calling you or stops accepting your calls, don’t take it personally. Remember, it was never a personal relationship to begin with. It was purely sexual and had no strings attached.

    6. Be Open & Honest
    I know this sounds dangerously like “relationship talk” but trust me, as long as you and your BCC know where things stand right off the top, and then you won’t have to deal with any real relationship talks later on. Just be tactful and make sure that you’re both on the same page. Once you see you’re both on the same page, feel free to have sex on it.

    7. Be Safe
    It’s the 21st century: should I really have to go into this? Just remember to protect yourself so you can enjoy Booty Calls well into your golden years.

    8. Please Please Me, Please Please You
    Be a generous lover. It doesn’t cost you a thing. As much as you may just want to get off, remember there is someone else involved here. If all you’re thinking about is yourself, then yes you may have just screwed your BCC, but you’ve also probably just screwed your chances at another Booty Call down the line.

    9. Timing
    No calls before 9:30 pm. No calls after 1:30 am. The Booty Call is definitely not for everyone. You have to be able to draw a distinction between the emotional and the sexual. But if you do it right, the good times are guaranteed. Just remember: don’t call collect.

  • Rules for the One-Night Stand

    Rules for the One-Night Stand

    By Sarah Fielding

    Originally, ‘one-night stand’ was a term used to describe a travelling theatre show appearing in a town for one night only.

    Today, the term is synonymous with a sexual encounter that neither party expects to become anything more.

    According to a 2005 Durex Sex Survey, 44 per cent of adults worldwide have had a one-night stand. Australians especially seem to love their no-strings affairs, with a massive 60 per cent of Aussies surveyed admitting to a carefree shag… or two.

    With numbers like this, odds are you too will experience a one-night stand some time in your sexual life. Chances are you’ve already had one. Or more.

    But for the uninitiated or those sensitive types who find the love ‘em and leave ‘em approach difficult to grasp, these tips will help you master the art of the non-committal, guilt-free romp.

    Widen your Hunting Ground

    Managing a one-nighter is a hell of a lot easier when you’re out of town on business, on holidays or when there is virtually no chance you are ever going to see the other person again. Things become more complicated when you’ve hooked up with a neighbor, roommate, co-worker, friend of a friend etc. Remember: The fewer degrees of separation, the more likely it is that things could get messy. Think before you act, particularly if you’re getting frisky with a boss, friend or (gulp) someone else’s significant other.

    Take Aim on your Target

    Traditionally, one-night stands involve individuals who have not known each other long and who engage in the bare minimum of getting-to-know-you activities before deciding that a sexual encounter will ensue. But whether you meet your new bed buddy online or in a bar, the first thing to make absolutely clear is that you are both after the same thing — mutual, non-committal sexual gratification.

    Playing at Home
    There are arguments for and against doing the deed at your place. If you stick to your home turf, you will know the sheets are clean and you won’t have to stumble home in the dark… or worse, early morning light. On the downside, if you’ve got roommates or thin walls you might prefer somewhere more discrete and private, like their place.

    “I live in a new block of apartments and the walls are not very soundproofed. I know this because the night after I brought a girl back here — she was a real screamer — I got a note under my door from my neighbors,” says Phil. “Very embarrassing.”

    Playing Away
    Playing away from your place means there’s no chance of seeing your roommates (only his/hers, but hey, you’ll probably never see them again either). You get to be mysterious and keep your address to yourself. And best of all, you can get up and leave without laying there wondering how the hell you’re going to kick your conquest out of bed and out of the house.

    “The sex was great but his sheets were horrible,” says Belinda. “They looked like they hadn’t been washed in weeks — and that he’d been doing quite a bit of… entertaining. While he was in the toilet, I quickly pulled up the comforter, and we did it on top of it instead of the crusty sheets.”

    Kick out the Jams
    So, you’ve managed to hitch a ride out on Route 69 and are no longer travelling solo. Good for you. Now’s your chance to indulge, explore and let your imagination run wild. No-strings sex means you can let your inhibitions down. You’re not anxious to impress or concerned about what the other person really thinks of you, so you can let go and run wild.

    “My advice is to treat your one-night stand as the chance to do something wild and dirty, something you would probably never do with someone you were in a relationship with,” says Amy. “You’re probably never going to see them again, so what do you care if they think you’re a freak?”

    A Little Less Conversation…
    One-nighters are not the place for deep and meaningful conversations or bonding over shared hobbies and interests. If things are going to plan, the only bonding you’ll be doing will be from the waist down. But it would be virtually impossible to conduct a no-strings fling without communicating on some level. In these instances, less is more.

    Three things you should always say:

    “Pass the condoms.”
    “Pass the lube.”
    “Thank you!”

    Three things you do not want to hear:

    “I think I love you.”
    “Where is this relationship going?”
    “Who are you and what are you doing with my wife?”