Archive for sexploreum

True lies and the smell of belonging

I know that my callers are possibly/probably/definitely lying, depending on what we’re talking about. The more illegal or messy or “extreme” their fantasy is, the less likely it is that they are doing it in real life. I have to behave as if I believed my callers, just for better phone acting—I don’t want to sound skeptical or second-guess them, obviously—but that’s never really a problem. Some guys make it extra easy for me to think they’re lying.

Like the Sniffer. From the first call I took with him, I never believed in the existence of Wanda’s, his favorite brothel. I do think brothels exist. I just don’t believe that some brothel in the nearly rural South is just coincidentally staffed by a lot of the types of women that the Sniffer happens to like—older, very hirsute, chubby-to-fat, willing to stay “stinky”—types that are not commonly sought after out in the rest of the world. I doubt that he could walk in on a slow Sunday, as he says he normally does, and just pick out two or three stinky, hairy ladies who are willing to give him a free pass to eat out their well-fucked pussies and have them piss on him. There’s too much “that’s not the way the world works” in there.

So I’m used to having to stretch my mind to accommodate the Sniffer’s universe in it. I didn’t think he could lie any harder. He didn’t need to. Just stop there, sir. The tissue of untruth is getting might see-through. But no. He went ahead and put down another layer of bullshit.

He claimed, with all sincerity, that a work-from-home fraud protection representative called to check on some charges on his bank card, specifically the charges that my phone-sex company had processed, and when the Sniffer told the lady what those charges were for, and what he talked about during the phone sex sessions, he said that she not only did not hang up on him, but asked him questions about his fetishes and listened to him jack off toward the end of the call.

He said she sounded fascinated. I said, I bet. He said, “She kept asking me for details and so I gave them to her.” I said, Of course it sounds interesting. I bet she hasn’t really run across anything like this before. Meanwhile, my mind drifted to all of the non-sex phone workers I’ve heard being angry—and rightfully so—about dudes being sleazy at them during a work call. All of them would shut that shit down; none of them would consent to sit there and listen to a man jerking off. They don’t get paid enough for that. Hell, I barely get paid enough for that. Another lie.

But as I agreed and nodded and encouraged him to talk about this phone encounter that almost certainly does not exist, I realized that it’s not just his kinks that he wants indulged; he’s also got a fairly detailed fantasy about how other people feel about these kinks.

That is, by talking about the abundance of stinky, hairy, and charitable sex workers at the local brothel, or pretending that some random older lady checking on his credit card activity would be so interested in his kinks as to give him free phone sex, the Sniffer is creating a fantasy world where his kinks are common. He’s mixing up the bits where he’s special and unique with a world where he is welcomed as a sort of sexual connoisseur, where he could have his choice of lovely (by his standard) ladies with which to frolic, where he could randomly run into women who share his thing, who celebrate it.

Some people thrive on being an outsider, but most want to belong. Apparently even the Sniffer.


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Seven signs that the sex-tip article you’re reading is Terrible

I’ve been systematically dismantling Terrible Sex Tips for over a year now, flagging, reading, and shredding all kinds of sex and relationship pieces in an effort to really pinpoint why they are crap. This research uniquely qualifies me to speak out about how to become a more savvy consumer of such advice piece. How do you know when the tips are truly terrible? What red flags wave brightly from the pages of that women’s magazine or that men’s web site, warning you that what you’re about to read is going to be utter shite?

There are the obvious flags, like loading on credentials that turn out later to be from an online diploma mill, or calling something “kinky” or “adventurous” without discussing the subjectivity of desire, or calling a sex move “the best thing ever.” Oh, and hyperbole is fine when you’re just talking with friends, but I am not your friend, Sex Tip Writer, and your enthusiasm about an activity you just discovered gets in the way of my assessing the actual activity.

Here are seven more warning signs that the article you are looking at is probably Terrible:

  • It includes positions without giving you good reasons for trying them. Usually this is couched in language like “something to cross off the list” or “worth it for bragging rights,” some shit like that. The higher the number contained in the title, the more likely you’re going to have some filler positions in there.


  • It includes positions or activities for reasons that aren’t about sex or relationships at all. I get the whole interconnectivity of everything, and that we’re rarely “just” having fun. But there’s no need to add in exercises for maximizing your sweat time.


  • It talks about public sex without bringing up ethics. It’s not prudish to talk about not involving bystanders in a scene against their will; that’s called “consent”. Some discussion of public sex and indecency charges and the law is also in order, at least mentioning it as a possible concern.


  • It talks about BDSM without safety tips or safe words. How many “spice up your relationship with kink” pieces have I seen that talk about trying out soft bondage, like scarves or ties, without having a pair of emergency scissors or shears on hand? How many advocates of spanking or rape fantasies don’t bother talking about safe words? <sigh> Fuck you very much, 50 Shades of Grey.


  • It pushes a product or specific skill/training as a solution. We understand that people putting themselves out there as experts—myself included!—are trying to drum up business for themselves in some way. But some “experts” are less expert than others, and a ham-handed link between writing and product/service just comes off as infomercial, and does not inspire trust. Also, you can tell when someone has gotten paid off by a PR rep.


  • It speaks generally about desire, usually about what men or women want, and doesn’t really spend any time at all on the real truth, that we are all different.


Why do I care about this stuff? Well, in my growing experience with Terrible Sex Tips, I find that the things that make them terrible often reveal gaps in our collective sexual awareness, or damaging assumptions or problematic myths. These seven signs of a Terrible Sex Tip piece are seven places where we need to do some work.


You help me tear down the terrible and build new foundations for sexual excellence when you become a patron of mine over on Patreon!

CALL OF THE DAY: “She won’t understand”

My surfer dude is one of my few callers who has ever referred to his partner in our conversations, not in a sexual way, but in a “hey, this person exists in my life, and she’s amazing, but I couldn’t tell her the sorts of stuff I do with you” way. That’s a direct quote. So, since he was being really up front about this, I asked the logical follow-up question: why can’t you tell her? And he said simply, “She wouldn’t understand.”

I did not press, because that is not my job, to be a consciousness-raiser and sexuality coach. (Maybe it could be? I’ll get back to you on that. But definitely it is not something I do for my callers.) As far as I know, Surfer Dude is still with his girlfriend, and he obviously hasn’t told her, because he’s still calling me at least once a month, so that I can pretend to be a sexy female UPS driver delivering a new dildo and I catch "Wendy" watching porn and we can do some sweaty, hot, girl-on-girl frottage and pussy eating..

But that one sentence has remained emblematic for me, of the dilemma that so many people face when talking with their partners about their desires: “They wouldn’t understand.”

First of all, we don’t know that "they wouldn’t understand." When it comes to sharing our deep-down sexual truths with a partner, well, we hopefully have a good sense about our lovers’ general open-mindedness and adventurousness or what-not, we don’t know for a fact whether or not they will understand until we share our thing, until we open that door of mystery and see what's behind it. Self-disclosure always carries a risk. Someone who seems strict or uptight may be totally down, and someone who is otherwise very chill may have a private trauma in their past that they are reacting with. Or maybe it is just very strongly Not A Thing for them. We don’t know, so, strictly speaking, “they might not understand.”

And anyway, them not understanding is not the actual fear, is it? There is nothing to fear in someone looking at you blankly, or asking for repeated clarification, or finally, after 30 minutes of careful back-and-forthing, shrugging their shoulders and saying, “I just don’t get it.” Unspoken in that sentence is what we fear what might happen after, if they don’t.

What lies there, in that heart of fear? What might my surfer dude actually be afraid of? What are we afraid of, when we imagine our partners’ incomprehension or non-acceptance of our desires or fantasies or kinks?

  • They might leave us, too disgusted by our revelation to be in our presence for one more day, one more minute.
  • They might laugh at us, and share our secret with others so that they may laugh too.
  • They might report us, if our fantasies are very extreme and on the other side of the taboo line.
  • They might look at our life together as a lie, if they believe, as many people do, that fantasies must mean something in real life.
  • They might look at our life together as a lie, if it turns out that our fantasies actually do mean something in real life.
  • They might look at us as a liar, someone who cannot be trusted because what we reveal doesn’t match up with who they thought we were.

When you look at the array of possible outcomes to sharing our deepest scariest sex secrets, even with someone who loves us, then yes, Surfer Dude's trepidation makes total sense. As it is, he gets by with 10 or 15 minutes of phone sex every three or four weeks, and obviously feels that getting caught in it is something he's willing to risk more than what might happen if he told his girlfriend. We all have to make these judgment calls about our own lives. Sometimes things aren’t safe, emotionally or even physically. I won’t make that blanket judgment call for anyone.

But if you are facing one of these dilemmas, where you think someone “won’t understand,” I hope you’ll sit with it a while, and really think about all of the possible outcomes if they don’t understand, and then… well, what happens if they do?

Is opening that door worth it? Only you get to decide. But that decision should be a conscious one, which you revisit every now and then.

Living life in fear, even little fears, isn’t the best way to live.


I'm no sexuality and relationship coach, but I think about them a lot. It's just one of the many things I do in my writing work, which you help make possible when you become a patron of mine over on Patreon!

CALL OF THE DAY: Hot & Sexy calls and the emotional labor of phone sex

My company has a name for these kinds of calls: “Hot & Sexy.” Hot & Sexy calls are best defined by what they are not: no force, no gender play, no butt play on him, no foot licking, no homo-eroticism, no overt expressions of dominance in either direction. But calling the Hot & Sexy calls “vanilla” doesn’t do them justice, because there are many ways to do vanilla. We kinksters might like to pretend otherwise, but actually there are many possible positions and activities for “vanilla” sex.

For face-to-face sex, this is great news. Lots of terrain to explore, my vanilla people! For phone sex though, this can be BLARGH, and I hadn’t really remembered How Much Blargh until last week, when I took a 7-minute, new(-to-me) caller, who “just wanted some hot, wet sex.”

That’s it, that was all he would give me, even after 30-45 seconds of questioning. He didn’t seem frustrated or anxious about not being able to tell me something more specific; he stayed jovial and raunchy the whole time. He just thought that I could step in and manifest, out of thin air, his own personal paradise of good “hot, wet sex.”

This is what casual entitlement looks like.

He didn’t want to do any work for this call, because hey, he’s paying for it and trying to articulate one’s turn-ons does in fact take a certain amount of psychological exertion. I’m doing the emotional labor here—that is an unspecified and variable but ever-present part of any sex worker’s job—and I knew damn well that if I didn’t suss out his sexual desires, and fast, he would hang up. If he did call back the company, he would blame it on me.

So I did what I always do with these free-floating H&S calls: pick as vague a scenario as possible, launch into it with conviction, and then tailor it down on the fly with whatever feedback I can wring out of him in the moment.

For this caller, I offered girl-on-top; I figured anyone as lazy as this probably would have similar tendencies in preferred sexual positions as well, and yep, I was right!

But wait, I said, are you hungry? (This of course is code for oral.)

“Oh, yeah, I am so hungry.”

Then lie back and let’s 69, I murmured. You’re about to get a really good breakfast.

So we wound up with a fairly straightforward progression from 69 (girl-on-top) to cowgirl, which I figured out from just knowing the one thing: how little effort he wanted to put into the encounter. It’s not psychic, it’s psychological, and holy crap, is it a pain in the ass.

But I couldn’t help coming off of that call with a sort of pride in my abilities. This had been the first call of the morning, only 10 minutes after I had signed in, the day after the first late-night cabaret of the Montreal Fringe. This was at my mental low point of the day, is what I’m saying, And I still managed it.

My instincts are working, even when the rest of my brain isn’t.


Just kidding: MY BRAIN IS WORKING ALL THE TIME, bringing you the best I can do from the worlds of sex, relationships, and theatre. Honor the work by patronizing me at Patreon!

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