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?)
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
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?
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