Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Secret (by Phila)

If you're a woman -- and you must be, or you'd be bowhunting or watching porn instead of reading this blog -- you've probably spent a lot of time wondering what motivates you to have sex.

Thanks to important new research of some type, undertaken somewhere in Texas, the mystery is solved...for the moment. It seems that unlike men, straight women have sex for a baffling variety of reasons, which include extorting household chores out of their partners, extorting presents out of wealthy men, and yielding to male demands for sex in order to "keep the peace."

Science also informs us that while some women have sex out of pity, they're more often motivated by a selfish desire for something other than sex.
While it may not come as welcome news, some women have sex out of sympathy, with one admitting: "I slept with a couple of guys because I felt sorry for them."

But many have more selfish motives, with financial or material rewards a major factor.

In one survey of students, nearly one in 10 women admitted to "having sex for presents". Others said: "He bought me a nice dinner", "he spent a lot of money on me early on", "he showed me he had an extravagant lifestyle".
It's not clear how many "others" you have to add to "nearly one in 10" to get "many." But who cares? The important thing is that women are a bunch of goddamn gold diggers, by and large.

Changing the subject, did you know that some women pursue sex for its own sweet sake?
And rather than love or romance, for many women sex is just about fun.

Six in 10 university students said they slept with a male friend who was not their boyfriend. "Life is too damn short to be waiting four years to have sex again," one said.
With that strange quote, this article -- which is called "Secret's out: why women really have sex" -- ends as mysteriously as it began. Did any of the six in 10 women who slept with non-boyfriends do it for presents, or a nice dinner, or out of pity? We'll probably never know, though we can certainly speculate. The one thing we can be pretty sure of is that some many most women are deceitful schemers.

Don't let that color your impression of their survey responses, though. It's likely that they're telling the truth here, for once, since they're just confirming what the people who matter have always suspected. And besides, why would anyone lie about this?
One woman even admitted to having sex just so her husband would put the rubbish out.
If he were asked, her husband might admit that he puts the rubbish out just so he can have sex. But I suppose that wouldn't be nearly as interesting to the average reader...especially since the article is about women's convoluted psychosexual problems, rather than men's funny little quirks.

Besides, suggesting that the sexual division of labor might have some bearing on a lot of these "findings" would instantly transform the article from an informative look at current scientific research to a shrill feminist polemic. Which would be unprofessional, at the very least.

The article makes no sense at all, as journalism. But considered as a sort of ideological peep show, articles like this one do follow a certain lurid carnival-barker logic. Just like at some carnival striptease, the Mystery of Womanhood is revealed to the rubes with clockwork regularity, as often as the market will bear. And just like at a carnival, the mystery is as phony as the revelation. Still, as long as people continue to line up for it, it's as true as it needs to be.

So various adaptations to male demands are portrayed as a glimpse at the "reality" of female desire. And since reality can't be reduced to this portrayal, there's a nagging feeling, again, of some persistent mystery, and the whole cycle starts over: What are women really like? What do they really want?

One approach to the problem would be to consider the role that male domination plays in formulating these questions, let alone socially acceptable answers to them. But since a journalist can't acknowledge our culture's bone-deep misogyny without forfeiting the objectivity upon which all really serious people insist, whatever theory fits the available facts must be close enough to correct. As Sherlock Holmes said, "After eliminating the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, is the truth."