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"Just chill the fuck out,” I say to my penis.

But it won’t listen. I’m having a (decidedly one-sided) mental conversation with my penis in my parents’ living room. I’d been sitting there, minding my own business, when it suddenly decided to conduct a surprise inspection of the inside of my boxers.

We have a complicated relationship, my penis and I. You would think, us both being 33 years old, that we might have come to some kind of détente regarding the proper time and place for it (I am self-consciously avoiding referring to it as “he” although to be honest the juvenile temptation is there) to spring in to action, so to speak. That it is able to is not the problem. I’m not sure where the cut-off line generally begins, but if my slowly-creeping-toward-middle-age friends are to be believed, I should just be happy it shows up to the party at all. Or at least with any frequency. But, as the comedians say, timing is everything.

My penis would make a lousy comic.

So anyway I was sitting on the couch, having the usual non-conversation conversation with my mom. And while we waltzed our usual waltz (“Have you met any nice girls?” “Not lately, Ma.” “Maybe you should go back to school.” “I’ll think about it, Ma.” “I wish you’d call us more.” “I’ll try, Ma.”), I was petting the family cat, Brantford. And he was purring.

Now obviously I wasn’t thinking about my Mom. And I definitely wasn’t thinking about the cat. But he was vibrating right in my lap. A physiological response ensued, and the next thing I know, I have an erection.

That brings us up to date.

I’m going to pause right here to dispel a few of the misconceptions you might be having at this moment. I’m not sexually aroused by cats. I’m not sexually aroused by my mom. I’m certainly not sexually aroused by the combination of cats and my mom. In this particular moment I’m not sexually aroused by anything other than the fact that a vibrating object (which could just have easily been an electric toothbrush or, you know, a vibrator) is making incidental contact, through the fabric of my pants and boxers, with my genitals.

I’m also not advocating cat adoption for those of you out there with erectile difficulties. I do advocate cat adoption because lots of cats need homes, and I’m not saying you shouldn’t get one if you also happen to be one of those who can’t get it up. Just please don’t adopt a cat because you can’t get it up.

To return to my current dilemma, I’m now deeply ensconced in a rather compromising situation involving a parent, a pet, and a granite member. A new concern at this point presents itself: my lap has become an increasingly uncomfortable place for a cat to relax upon. Unfortunately I’m not in a position to reveal to my still chattering mater the contents of my loose-fitting pants, which would be readily apparent if not for the fidgety feline. This left me with but one choice. I thus have to spend the next four or so minutes physically restraining an angry cat from jumping away by firmly holding him against my hard penis. All the while I have to give the impression that everything is normal, that I’m paying a modicum of attention to my mother, that the no-longer-purring-but-increasingly-hissing cat in my lap is still happy to be there, and that I most definitely am not some kind of sick weirdo. Luckily, either through simple ignorance of the situation (possible) or willful disregard (more likely), I never get the impression that my mom catches on to what is happening less than five feet from where she sits. Eventually, things settle down, and life continues.

But my boner concerns persist.

The ironic thing about my stiffy conundrum is that, although getting it up isn’t a problem, I’ve actually become very bored with the actual sexual act.

It’s just too much work.

When I was younger I really put a lot of effort into the whole thing, mainly because I was surprised I was having sex and was really hoping for a return engagement.

Maybe some word-of-mouth referrals as well.

As I got older, however, I discovered that as much as I looked forward to getting laid, and as much as I wanted to have sex with pretty much every attractive woman I saw (and see, as this part of it hasn’t really abated), once I was actually in the act I was both easily fatigued and generally unimpressed with the whole endeavour.

Being on top, for example, tends to be a whole lot like doing pushups. And no matter how nice the area of my anatomy directly affected feels, it’s not nearly enough to make up for the agony the rest of my body is in, at least not for an extended period of time. Exercise sucks. (I’m also aware that I may just be horribly out of shape, but let’s put a pin in that.)

Sex with her on top would appear at first glance to be the easier way to go (for me), but you really can’t just lay there doing nothing without starting to feel a little guilty, so you end up going through the motions of making an effort (that really awkward rapid upward pelvic thrust, for example), which when you come right down to it is no different from actually making an effort.

So now I do this thing where I get on top, and I put it in, and then I sort of roll us over onto our sides. I then writhe around a little bit. The position has a name I’m sure - the Lilting Orchid, maybe, or the Siamese Chokehold. What is definitely the case is that it’s one of the laziest ways possible to have sex. It has the added disadvantage for my partner of putting one of her legs to sleep as her thigh is stuck supporting one of my hips, cutting off circulation through her femoral artery. All in all it’s thoroughly unsatisfying, but at the very least not energy intensive.

Sometimes, because I’m also easily bored, I like to mix it up while still maintaining my all-encompassing laziness. So I get on top, and I put it in (that’s my opening move), and then I pull my arms out from under me and just sort of flop down on top of my partner. I’m literally not supporting any of my own bodyweight, which is now fully borne by her face and chest. Then I just kind of wiggle my hips. This is the sum total of my energy expenditure. The major downside to this method is that if my partner is significantly shorter than I am, I am distracted by the constant fear that I may be on the verge of smothering her to death. I imagine orgasm becomes infinitely harder to achieve once your partner is dead. Maybe my penis and I would keep trying though. We’re troopers.

Until that exciting day arrives, however, my penis and I are doomed to spend our days existing in a sad limbo between uninspired boners and uninspiring sex. At least we’ll always have Brantford.

One of the easiest ways to create something that white people will like is to create something that will allow them to feel smart but doesn’t require a large amount of work, time, or effort. There is, however, a catch. Whatever it is that you create cannot be a shortcut. You see white people like the idea of getting smarter quickly, but they don’t like the idea of people thinking that they are lazy. It is a bit of a paradox, but it does explain why white people only like Cliff Notes if they are part of some sort of hilarious college story about last-minute studying for an exam. And why they consider it highly unacceptable to use cliff notes or Wikipedia to get a rough understanding of a book you don’t want to read.

Unfortunately being able to create something that makes you feel smarter without having to do a lot of work has been very difficult. So only a few ideas have ever gained traction with white people, the most notable of which being documentary films and public radio. However, in the past decade a new item has been added to this very short list-TED Talks.

The TED Conference is an invite-only affair that brings together the smartest minds from around the world to share their knowledge and wisdom with the attendees. Additionally all of the talks are made available online and as podcasts so that white people are able to watch or listen to them at work or during their commute.

These talks are like college lectures, except that they are free to listen, shorter, and white people aren’t hung over and pretending to listen.

Due to the broad audience watching the talks, TED speakers generally take very complex ideas and boil them down into a simple engaging presentation. So when a white person finds out that you have a PhD and visits and attempts to engage you in a conversation about String Theory, you should know that all of their understanding comes from a twenty-minute talk they listened to while running on a treadmill. You should also be aware that the average white person considers their knowledge on the subject to be on par or superior to yours.

Sadly, TED Talks are not all roses and NPR approved comedians. For many white people, TED Conferences are actually a source of sadness and depression. This comes from their dreams to attend a future TED Conference in person. But with a price tag of $6000 and an invite-only policy, many white people are simply unable to attend. This is a new concept for white people as they have successfully been creating and joining expensive exclusive clubs for over one thousand years. Popular examples include: private schools, politics, and ice hockey.

Note: It is not advised to try to use sarcasm when trying to console a white person about their lack of an invitation to the TED conference.

“It must hard for you not being able to get into an expensive, invitation only club. As a non-white person, lets just say I have some experience in that field.”

“You didn’t get into MENSA either huh?”





The two have met head to head countless times, but always with the same result. Paper beating rock, and rather handily for that matter. It was not until late last night in Madison, Wisconsin in the Sigma Epsilon fraternity house that Rock would be triumphant over Paper.

The game plan for Paper had remained the same for many years. Paper would ‘cover and smother’ the rock into submission by simply blanketing the rock, rendering it useless. The strategy worked for years, and often went unquestioned by fans and players alike. The strategy and game play was roundly accepted until there was a game of rock-paper-scissors to determine who would get the two remaining pieces of pizza from the other side of the room.

“When I was thrown out there, I was truly thinking that there would be Scissors waiting for me. I thought the worst it would be was another rock.” Stated the winning Rock in a post game interview. “Boy was I surprised when I saw a paper.” Rock was ready to accept defeat when he pulled a move years in the making. “I thought I could use one of my edges to scuff and rip the paper” Rock stated as he relived the moment.

Rock (top left) Celebrating Victory With His Family

Rock did just that, roughing up and scratching the paper until it was a mere shadow of it’s former self. The move used was similar to the time-tested ‘bash n’ smash’ that Rock regularly performs on Scissors, but had never before been tried on paper. “I didn’t see it coming.” said a forlorn Paper immediately after the defeat. “It’s going to be a long flight home, and there is going to be a lot of finger pointing, hand gesturing and fist clenching but I am going to get through this.” While paper has learned to accept repeated defeats to scissors over the years, this one especially hurts. In a statement released by Paper’s publicist late last night he said, “I would like to congratulate Rock. At this point I just want to get healthy again at which point I will deal with the results of the game.”

Paper After The Loss

What is not yet known are the long-term ramifications of this result on the entire Rock-Paper-Scissors league and rules. Paper plans to appeal the ruling with the commissioner, and the results of this appeal may be felt for years to come. This appeal is met with support by Scissors (known league-wide as a staunch traditionalist), “Look, I see where this is all going. Pretty soon, Paper will be finding a way to wrap itself around me and then where will we be?” At press time the league could not be reached for comment but an official ruling is expected by the end of the week. While controversy swirls around last night’s contest, some are still basking in victory.

“I am so damn proud of that rock!” Cried Will “Sully” Sullivan, who, because of Rock’s bold move won the right to stay on the couch and not fetch the pizza. “I think what he did was a gutsy call, it took some real stones to do that.”

Elsewhere around the league, Rock defeated Scissors, Paper tied Paper, and there was one recall for playing on the ’3’ count and not ‘shoot’.

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