I enhanced my sexual skills by watching squirrels

It’s a metaphor, see? Or maybe just live-action cartoons.

I don’t know how it happens, but many of the sexiest, most satisfyingly intimate moments that I’ve had with my lover have not been in the bedroom. We’ve had our clothes on, and we’re not even talking about sex. Not even using innuendo.

Maybe we’re playing bananagrams at the train station. Or walking around looking at weird trees in other people’s front gardens. Maybe we’re leveling art criticism at a statue. Oh, what about that one time that we sat on a park bench in Montreal and made up a running monologue for the local squirrels that was a cross between WWF commentary and a children’s story. The squirrels didn’t seem to care about the funny voices, they were busy scrounging for the last hidden nuts, but that’s okay, we weren’t doing it for them. We were doing it for us.

I will remember that silly squirrel day forever, and I am not exaggerating when I tell you that day, and other days and moments like it, make our sex life, like, ONE THOUSAND TIMES HOTTER, and it was already scorching.

Why? Because it was all play. So much in the world around us was and continues to be play. Not that we can’t take things seriously, when we need to catch a train, for example, or when we are discussing each other’s career goals. But our standard M.O. seems to be… play.

So many grown-ups think they have grown out of playtime, or they keep it confined to specific games or contexts like the basketball court or video games. This is a mistake. Unstructured play teaches us important things. When we were young, play taught us things like cooperation and communicating and basic laws of physics vis a vis trajectory and doll heads. These are things we learned from play when we were young.

Adults learn different things from unstructured play, like trust and knowing who is not going to laugh at us for our worst silly voices. I mean BEST. Best silly voices! Non-sexual play with our partner(s) can give us advanced instruction in cooperating, or maybe we need more practice at not giving up at a game when we lose.

Play exposes us to the linguistic rhythms in our lover’s head, word games flying back and forth so fast, you’d think you’re not really picking up anything, but it’s there, and you play, the more comfortable you feel with rhymes and puns and your lover’s own verbal style. Play talk between adults is actually some advanced-level linguistic action.

Play adds extra dimensions to the everyday world that we are moving through. We may be walking to the tram “in the real world,” but we are also moving through a world populated by robots, or perhaps one in which every passersby is a spy or a chef or something that is not what they seem. We learn how to speak those extra dimensions alive, so that we both can see.

The best part? That is all happening right there on the pavement, with other people walking around us. We are having major personality/communication breakthroughs all the time, right there in the middle of the street.

Non-sexual, unstructured playtime makes this all possible, and the benefits they bring are TOTALLY transferable. Trust and language and imagination… these are all things that my creative sexy times need. Playing with these qualities outside of sex gives us lots of practice, which is important, because I want that playfulness more almost than I want any particular kind of sex. More than anything in sex, I want my partner to be right there, stepping into the daring and silly and experimental right along side of me.

And for me, at least, making up back stories for nervous squirrels seems to help get us there.


What’s your favorite non-sexy fun time thing to do with your partner(s)? How do you play? If you liked this piece, consider showing your love by becoming a patron of mine over on Patreon! Your small (or large!) per-piece contribution keeps me out there, doing sex-aware theatre and writing sex-aware shit like this.

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