Is Sex Necessary?

While reading over the weekend, I came across a few things that got me thinking about sex.  Not terribly unusual, as most things get me thinking about sex, including the ingredient lists on grocery packaging. (Hmmm.  Polysorbate 80.  I wonder if that makes you horny?)

Looking for a partner who enjoys watching old movies, likes to laugh, and will produce offspring that are more resistant to drought.

The first thing I read was over on  Extra Terrestrial Science, Dad:  Do Not Read This Post!  which contrasted the benefits of sexual and asexual reproduction, and concluded that sexual reproduction is a pretty good thing, even though it requires a lot of work to go out there and find a potential mate and then convince him/her to, you know, mate, because by mixing our genetic material together (how romantic!) we may come up with a new combination that makes babies that are an improvement over us.  For example, they might be more resistant to parasites, or have bigger penises (Hah!  Bigger penises don’t give you any competitive advantage.  Or do they?) and therefore more likely to help the species survive.

At least, I think that’s what the blogger concluded.  I got distracted by the picture of bugs humping featured in that post, so my understanding may have been affected.  Go over and read it yourself to see if I’m right.  Just try to resist the urge to obsess about insect naughty bits for the rest of the day.  Man, I wasted a good Saturday on that.

The second post I found was at Essa on Everything, The Good Old Days Weren’t Always That Good, in which the blogger discusses the frustrations of dating (among other things), and sorta comes to the opposite conclusion: the effort we have to put into finding a potential mate isn’t worth it, and, in fact, finding a mate is just going to fuck with your personal happiness.

As so often happens, while these two arguments were raging in my head, I came across two relevant items in the mainstream press.  The first was from the Atlantic, Are Fathers Necessary? and the second was an op ed in the New York Times Men, Who Needs Them?  The piece in the

Did you ever notice how phallic kitchen faucets are?

Atlantic cites a bunch of statistics and concludes that single Moms are way better parents than single Dads, and the only reason why two parent families fare so much better than single parents is because they have more income, not because they have a Dad around.  I’d like to offer some anecdotal evidence against that theory:  my husband at this moment, while I sit out on the patio writing this post, is in the kitchen, lying on his back under the sink, fixing the kitchen faucet.  We have been without water in the kitchen for two days, ever since the sink sprayer got stuck in the ON position and did not respond to banging it (hard!) against the side of the sink (this always worked before).  So, yes, we have two incomes and we can afford  to purchase a new kitchen faucet, that much is true, but I just don’t have the know-how to do even this simple plumbing task.  I should probably be ashamed of this.

My point (and I do have one) is my husband makes the water in the kitchen.

No, my (somewhat sexist) point is that there is a whole lot more that men contribute than just income and sperm.

Or maybe not.  That’s what I started thinking after I read the New York Times editorial, Men, Who Needs Them? which really got me worrying about the future of sex with the following fun fact: there is enough frozen sperm banked around the world to continue to populate the world for the foreseeable future.  Think about that for a moment.  Right now, every man could be wiped off the face of the earth (just like what sort of happened to the finches I wrote about in What a Pathetic Lesbian I Would Be) and the human race would go on.  And on.  And on.

Except all our kitchen faucets would stay broken.

OK, I have to ask you:  Could the human race go on without sex?  Would you want to?

Royalty free stock photos including the images in this post can be found at Stock.XCHNG.

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19 thoughts on “Is Sex Necessary?

  1. GreedyFrog says:

    I have just told my husband that, since he is incapable of fixing anything around the house, he is pretty much redundant.
    I am afraid Mr Greedy Frog is not very impressed with your post. But I am. And thanks for helping me prove a point! 🙂

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  2. rebecca2000 says:

    Ummm heck yeah we need sex. I do anyway. I go half insane if I have to wait more than a day. Even then sometimes I am turning inside-out. I don’t understand people that could take it or leave it.

    More to your point…yes faucets are phallic like. Oh wait, that wasn’t your point. I think we all need each other. The world would be a very boring place without men.

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    • Karen says:

      It bears repeating, the people who read this blog are horny. 😉
      I’m with you, though. Just because the human race *can* continue on without sex, doesn’t mean I’d want it to. Snuggling up to a turkey baster just isn’t quite the same.

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    • Karen says:

      Hmmm. I’m thinking we’re not talking about actual “cream” with your “coffee,” now, are we? Or do I just have a dirty mind?

      And the sink does work! Hooray!

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  3. Jesse says:

    This is not a popular response, but I am up in the air on this one. Of course, we need it, biologically, which is why we seek it. We are built that way. But think about how much more productive we would all be if this coupling nonsense was removed from our daily existence? Just in terms of time management, it does consume a good portion of our lives. This sounds awful doesn’t it? I’m such a type A person. Don’t hate me.

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    • Karen says:

      No, it doesn’t sound awful and I encourage you to go over and read the post at Extra Terrestrial Science, where Jani explains the benefits of asexual reproduction, too. It’s really easy to just split yourself into two and be done with it and go on with your life, maybe solving the problem of world hunger or discovering the meaning of life. Instead, we devote way too much energy to making sure our hair looks just right, and we don’t smell funny.

      Thanks for the thoughtful response, and congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

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  4. Pucker Up Buttercup says:

    “Except all our kitchen faucets would stay broken.”??? Okay, do you know any actual lesbians? ‘Cuz we’re all about fixing shit! Maybe you should see the movie “Bound”, it’s got a great scene featuring a couple of lesbians and a sink … here’s a link to said scene if you don’t want to sit through the entire flick: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MumJ41ho074. We may not be able to make sperm, but we make household repairs a whole lotta fun!
    PS: Watching this clip will drop you down to 90%, but it’s worth it. Thought you should know …

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