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My boyfriend and I both like porn and toys, and we’re obviously open about everything and often play with them together. But recently he posed an interesting question that left me feeling like a prudish conservative: If virtual-reality technology is developed such that one can have a sexual encounter with a computerized person (insert favorite famous wanna-fuck object here: Brad Pitt, Jessica Alba, whoever), would that be too close to cheating? He says that it’s just a face attached to a sex toy and nothing more. If porn is okay and sex toys are okay, he reasons, why not combine the two? But I’m feeling a little jealous of my boyfriend’s virtual fuck buddy of the future. What’s your take?
—Worried About Virtual Promiscuity
We can spend all day worrying about terrifying new sex technologies that have yet to be developed—virtual fuck buddies, horse-hung sexbots, Laura Ingraham’s vaginal canal—or we can make up our minds to cross those terrifying bridges when we come to, on, or in them.
As for what constitutes infidelity, well, that is and always will remain a highly subjective matter, WAVP. Every couple gets to decide for themselves just what constitutes infidelity within their own relationship. One couple may draw that line at pornography—well, it’s usually the batshitcrazy half that draws the line at pornography and the sane half concedes the point under duress and masturbates in secret—while the couple next door draws the line at quadruple penetration.
And speaking of infidelity: I’m gonna slap the next big, dumb gay opponent of marriage equality who whines about gay marriage being a plot to impose stultifying monogamy on us and destroy gay sex as we’ve come to blow and glove it. Straights don’t have to be monogamous to be married (or married to be monogamous), and neither do we. We can have our civil rights, full marriage equality, and our sexual adventures, too—just like straight people do.
Gay people who say, “We shouldn’t want to get married because then we’ll all have to be monoooooooogamous!” are just as dishonest—and just as full of shit—as Bible thumpers who say, “They shouldn’t be allowed to get married because they’re not capable of being monogamous!” Drop it, you douchebags. —Dan
Okay! I’m a bisexual woman who dated this amazing, beautiful, bisexual guy who was a bartender at the Gay 90’s in Minneapolis. (Shoutout!) Obviously it didn’t bother me that he liked men, but the thing I just could not tolerate was that after he would come on my stomach he would lick it alllllllllllllll up!!! OMFG I almost threw up every time!
I never said anything, because I’m not one to knock someone’s kinks as long as they’re safe and respectful. But I’m dying to know if this is a gay thing or did he have some type of protein deficiency? —Jizzed Upon in Minneapolis
A gay thing? Not according to my mail—or your example, JUIM, seeing as this guy was bi.
Getting back to my mail: All the panicky e-mail I get from people whose boyfriends, husbands, or FWBs suddenly lapped up their own come is from women. Either gay men don’t do this or they don’t regard the act as so troubling that they feel a need to ask me about it. But in my own personal sex life, JUIM, I’ve never seen a gay man lap up his own come—well, not unless he was ordered to.
So where did this kink come from? Who knows? Who cares? We can look back through this bartender’s life and speculate—maybe his dad forced him to lick his plate clean, maybe he started eating his come as a teenager to destroy evidence of masturbation from disapproving parents, maybe he’s deeply concerned (and deeply confused) about his carbon emissions—but, generally speaking, attempting to identify the root cause of an adult person’s fetishes, turn-ons, kinks, etc., is a waste of time.
It’s a much better use of our time, JUIM, to accept and enjoy our fetishes and our partners’ fetishes with good grace and a sense of humor. What turns us on turns us on, and angsting about it endlessly doesn’t change anything. —Dan
I’m writing on behalf of a friend of mine who is too tired and disgusted to write. The advice is too late for her, but I was wondering if you could send out a few hints to those who partake in golden showers.
My friend is a very nice landlady. She rented her basement apartment to a young woman whose boyfriend visited on weekends. After a couple months, the tenant moved out and my friend went down to clean. The place smelled disgusting and required hours upon hours of cleaning. The rugs in every room were soaked through and the walls were covered with dried urine. She had to rip out all the carpeting.
I just assumed people had the sense to do golden showers in the tub. So, Dan, what are the golden rules? —Irked Lady Landlord
What proof do you have that these two were piss freaks, ILL? Pissing all over carpets and walls is a time-honored way for disgruntled tenants to fuck over perceived-to-be-evil landlords; it is not, generally speaking, a piss freak’s modus operandi. It’s been my experience—ahem—that piss freaks are neat freaks (outside of the tub), the turn-on being the violation of their own taboos and hang-ups around cleanliness. —Dan
I’ve been reading your column pretty much since you started writing it in the early-mid-’90s. When I moved to New Orleans, pre-Interwebs, and discovered you weren’t represented in any local papers, I had a friend clip and mail your column every week so I wouldn’t miss out.
The reasons for the longevity of my interest are not only because you write good ’n’ stuff, but because your advice always nails it. But while I feel that you’re correct 100 percent of the time, I’m curious if you feel that you’ve ever made a mistake.
Are you infallible? Any regrets? —Curious In Louisiana
P’shaw, CIL, I’ve made my fair share of mistakes. I remember one in particular: After giving out some erroneous information about the location of the clitoris (it’s not on the tailbone, as it turns out) and being called out for it, I explained that, on the few occasions that I slept with women, I didn’t make a close study of their vaginas, as that would have made it harder to pretend that their vaginas were, in actual fact, Keanu Reeves’s distressed ass crack. Then I added, for no good reason, that to me a vagina would always look like “a canned ham dropped from a great height.”
I regret writing that, as people screamed and yelled, and I was even refused service in a lesbian bar over it. But luckily for me, the column in which I made that gynophobic but eerily apt crack—I mean, picture it: A canned ham falls from a great height, hits the ground hard, the weakest seam of the can splits, the meat product inside is pressed out through the long, narrow opening as the impact compresses the can, and pink meat unfolds like a delicate, if nonkosher, flower—is so old that it doesn’t exist on a Web archive anywhere and I can plausibly deny ever having written any such thing. —Dan Savage
Dan Savage’s most recent book, The Commitment: Love, Sex, Marriage, and My Family , is on sale now. Send your Savage Love questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. A new Savage Love podcast is available for download every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage.