[Editor's Note: This blog entry contains MATURE CONTENT. Usually my stuff is readable by the children as long as you're not too strict with the issue of profanity. This one, however, is about sex. Some folks are a little touchy about this issue...]
I nodded in agreement. “Men.” Men. Argh.
Okay, let's just take it as a given that no matter how much you love a man, the Imbalance of Sex thing is a problem. Women are romantic and would like to savor the experience on special occasions. Men would like to fornicate like bunnies every morning and every night. It is true: women are from Venus while men are from some planet on which sex is the only important functional task required of sentient life.
And don't think under normal circumstances that I'm not appreciative. I'm a forty something mother of three. I have stretch marks and flabby boobs and at least 15 pounds more than I should. I never wear make up, and I cut my hair like clock work every 6 months. I'm incredibly, unbelievably, amazingly lucky to have a sexy hot hunk of burning man like DrC interested in my battered and poorly kempt frame. He thinks I'm sexy. He wants my body! He finds me incredibly stimulating!! Woo hoo!!!
But, for crissakes, it's 90 degrees and overcast. I'm so hot that sweat is rolling down my neck and pooling under my breasts. My face looks like I took a wash cloth, soaked it in olive oil, and anointed myself. I smell bad, I feel sticky, two minutes out of the shower I feel like I've been dipped in pig shit. And if that isn't enough, my nose is running, my eyes itch, and my head hurts.
So pardon me if my first reaction to a firm bump in the rear portions by an interested male while my hands are buried deep in dirty dish water is to elbow him in the groin. I find the thought of sex in this climate about as unappealing as an after dinner snack of chocolate covered deep fried maggots. But nothing I say seems to discourage him. I can't slap his hands off my boobs without covering myself in suds and soap scum. Even growling does no good since in the strange language peculiar to men in heat, he interprets this as a come on.
So I completely sympathize with Meri. Men just wake up with this idea, and it's all you can do to get the idiots to come to their senses. Every woman reading to this point will not doubt sympathetically agree with Meri and I, “What the hell are they thinking?” While every man is probably asking himself, “Umm.... what's the problem? You're already hot, dirty and sweaty.”
Before we left, my husband and I wondered mightily what would happen to our sex life when we moved aboard the boat and sailed away with our children. On the one side, we were always more relaxed, uninhibited and – shall we say – active on vacation. More time, more energy. On the other hand, a boat is a really small echo chamber making noisy, uninhibited passion a bit awkward to say the least. Sound carries on water, by the way, so unless you want all your neighbors to also share in the moment... While there you go. On balance, I probably thought that we'd do it with approximately the same frequency but enjoy it more. DrC, of course, assumed we would simply do it more. Our vision of our sexual future was a direct by-product of our respective gender expectations and wistful hope rather than a pragmatic analysis of possible outcomes.
In the end, it's neither, both, and other. I'd have to describe us as healthier, our marriage stronger now than at any time in the 20 years we've been together. Part of that strength is an improved and healthier sex life. A really good reason to never go back to working full time is that when you're clocking 60 to 80 hours a week, there is not a particle of physical or emotional energy left for sex. Boat life does make for creative timing, interesting variations of doing it in utter silence, and no real necessity to ever have the “sex talk” with the children since I'm afraid all boat kids are inevitably exposed to a bit more of the practical complications of sexual activity than your average youngster. But I've spoken with enough boat couples on the subject to know, you too can have a good sex life out here cruising.
No, I mean it.
“Okay, but just this once and only if you promise to stop grabbing my tits for 24 hours as a sign of your appreciation of my sacrifice."