Friday, December 14, 2012

Inclusive Metaphors for Sex



    http://www.blackmediascoop.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/Screen-shot-2011-02-23-at-2.03.39-PM.png
We've all heard the baseball metaphors for sex, whether we know it or not.  1st, 2nd, and 3rd base are the most popular, but there are more. You've probably heard of "scoring", "hitting a home run" and "striking out" as well.  This metaphor even runs deeper than the physical act of sex, and those who are gay or lesbian are referred to as "playing for the other team".


http://images.wisegeek.com/baseball-player-hit-ball.jpg          This metaphor places value in "getting to a base" but sex isn't something you can "get" and it shouldn't be the point of a relationship, the way scoring is the point of a game. Another way that this metaphor is flawed is that a baseball game is between two teams who are working against each other, and sex really shouldn't be that way because it implies that only one "wins." The formula of baseball also doesn't fit because you can't skip around from base to base, but have to follow a precise pattern, and even more than that, a set of rules where certain actions can give the other "team" an advantage over you, which really sends the wrong message about sex.  Finally, baseball is only for the young, able bodied players at the top tier of their level.  Any metaphor for sex should be all-inclusive, and account for everyone.

          Al Vernacchio, M.S.Ed., a high school teacher, teaches a class on sexuality, and has suggested an alternate, and better, metaphor for sex.  This is the pizza metaphor.



http://www.800degreespizza.com/wordpress/wp-content/themes/800degrees-vimeo/img/slides/woodfire-pizza-on-marble.jpg          People can eat pizza just because they want to, or decide that you don't want it at all. You don't have to schedule a time place for it, and there are many different kinds of pizza you can choose from.  You can choose 1 slice and feel full for the rest of the day, have a whole pie to yourself, or eat some, then come back for seconds later in the day.  You can also eat pizza with anyone you want.  You could have it with your partner, but alone is fine too. Pizza also comes with different toppings, and you can put whatever you want on it. The goal when you're with a partner, is to find a group of toppings you both like.

          The most important reason that pizza is a better metaphor for sex is that you would never order a pizza without discussing what you want on your pizza with the person you're sharing it with.  You talk about what you like, and what kinds of things you really don't like or won't eat. Communication and negotiation are very important before beginning a sexual relationship.  You should know your partner's preferences and they should know yours.  This will lead to a safer and, ultimately, more satisfying experience for both of you.

If you like this metaphor, and want to read the original article or visit the website, here is the link.  The article was written by Carly Dreyfus in 2010 to Scarleteen.com

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