Sane Sex Life & Sane Sex Living

Some Things that All Sane People Ought to
Know About Sex Nature and Sex Functioning;
Its Place in the Economy of Life,
Its Proper Training and Righteous Exercise

H.W.Long, M.D.

Authorized Edition
Eugenics Publishing Co., Inc.
New York
© 1919

This is a book I picked up at an estate sale a few years ago, despite its plain cover. Although published long ago it actually gives fairly accurate and good advice for sexually active people and those preparing to be. Much of it is outdated, with the advent of AIDS, birth control and women with higher consciousness. Of course by today's standards, I can't help but wonder what "sane sex life" might be. There are telephone lines devoted to sex and ads in the back of most newspapers and magazines. There are sex chat forums on computers.

When I first started to IRC (Internet Relay Chat) a few years ago one of the first people I met online was a man who used the nickname of "Ahab." Ahab was a friendly enough sort, he was completing law school in Philadelphia he told me. Ahab was a happily married man with an attractive wife whom he loved.

Ahab and I would send messages to each other sporadically. We would casually chat about our lives much like any two strangers would. Now and then Ahab would attempt to turn the conversation toward sexual matters and I would always tell him that it was a topic I had no interest in discussing with him. He was persistent though, and would ask me questions designed to broach the topic from different angles. His persistence only made me think of the obsession of his namesake in Moby Dick.

"For a happily married man," I told him one day, "you sure exhibit a high interest in sex. What would your wife say?"

"My wife knows about this and doesn't mind," Ahab responded. "This isn't real, this is only words on a computer screen."

"Don't you ever worry about falling in love?," I asked Ahab.

"No," he answered, "I never meet the people I talk to in Real Life."

One afternoon I was online and Ahab typed a personal message to me.

"What are you wearing?" the message asked me.

"Old jeans and a tee shirt," I answered truthfully.

"No, no!" Ahab typed back, "you need to tell me something else, something sexy."

"Why?" I asked him.

"Because," he responded, "Everything you say here is in your mind, in your head. It all comes down to just one thing when you are online."

"What's that?," I asked.

"How fast can you type with just one hand?" Ahab answered, attempting to sound provocative.

I ponder this question, and of course for me as a computer teacher it has far reaching implications for change, should it ever catch on. I can envision keyboarding as being included in the health units of the future in public schools. It would also give rise to various expressions regarding the reputation of those who type fast. I personally am a lousy typist and still use the four-fingered modified hunt and peck method, so I would likely have a reputation of being "lousy at keyboard."

So this old book needs an addendum. A chapter on computer sex in the 90's where the foreplay and the act itself is solitary and mostly cerebral. Where people don't argue infidelity, but what the definition of infidelity actually is. Where it's easy to be the perfect partner and the only lament is the loss of something that never really was. The chapter might open with a slight edit to the Zen question: "What is the sound of one hand typing?" Oh, and it would come with a disk. "Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing." For only one hand.

Comments may be directed to:
Laurel O'Donnell
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