The Napoleon Dynamite Guide to Good Lovin’

Myself, I’ve always taken the Napoleon Dynamite approach to sex.

It was he of the delicious bass who noted that, “Girls only want boyfriends who have great skills.”

Granted, the finer points of Mr. Dynamite’s approach could use some tweaking (the whole obsession with nunchucks and bowhunting just screams sociopath — very unattractive), but as far as the general details are concerned, I have to admit, I like where the kid is coming from.

Like Mr. Dynamite, I’ve always considered skills to be important, cool, and desirable — in and out of the bedroom. This has a lot to do with the fact that I’m a sex geek. Ever since I was a kid, I’ve read everything I could get my hands on about sex. I’ve researched sex, geeked-out on sex talk with kindred sex geeks, studied biology in college, practiced certain physical and mental exercises related to sex, and am just generally inspired to acquire knowledge on the subject. And, all that on top of actually having sex on occasion.

It doesn’t require any special genius or lucky privilege to become a bonafide sex geek-all anyone needs is a library card. So, it surprises me that more people aren’t sex geeks.

Kickball Skills
When you’re attempting to compensate for some perceived inadequacy, skills can seem so practical. It’s no wonder that nerds get so enchanted by the allure of skills as a solution to life’s immediate dilemmas.

I think that there might be a direct correlation between being socially inept and/or lousy at team sports (“If only I could kick the ball, then everyone would like me!”) and developing an inflated emphasis on “skills” later in life. Be they computer skills, music skills, dancing skills, science skills, ninja skills, so on and so forth — it’s all nerdy stuff which seems to pay off in gangbusters later in life.

Case in point: what’s the nerdiest thing in the whole entire world? It’s got to be Dungeons & Dragons, a game whose premise is a fantasy universe based almost entirely on skills and dice rolls. Coincidence? I think not….

Thankfully, for those of us who were never much for kickball, nerdy is the new sexy. It wasn’t always that way (first definition at dictionary.com reads: “unattractive person”), but at least here and now in San Francisco, nerdy is HAWT. And with good reason, especially if you subscribe to the alternate definition of nerd: “Term of praise applied to someone who knows what’s really important and interesting and doesn’t care to be distracted by trivial chatter and silly status games.”

Like I said: HAWT. Who wouldn’t want to sleep with that person? No doubt, nerddom is one of many routes to success in life and love. Looking back at the movie, it’s worth noting that eventually Napoleon chills on the nunchucks, learns to dance, irons out the rough edges, lets all his inherent sweetiepieness shine through, and wouldn’t you know it, by the end of the movie he lands the girl of his dreams.

Geek Love
People are so obsessed with sex, it seems to me that everyone would want to know everything they could about it and do all the stuff they could to get good at it. It seems reasonable to want the skills. Tricks. Strength. Stamina. Dexterity. But where then are all the sex geeks? How much do you know about sex? How much time and thought do folks put into sex each week outside of the time they’re actually having sex?

I think there’s some sort of idea that if you get too nerdy about sex, too technical, it’ll take away from the spontaneity and feeling of the moment. To that I say, no matter how nerdy you get, there’s nothing in books, nothing that can be found anywhere in the hallowed halls of learning, that can prepare you for the experience of sex. Knowing every little detail about the biological processes of arousal and orgasm can’t take away one iota from the wonder and exhilaration of what the experience actually feels like in the moment. You can have memorized the Latin nomenclature for every flap, fold and crevice of the vagina, but come face-to-face to one and goddamn, that’s pussy, not some lifeless chapter in a textbook.

The obvious reason for not learning and doing everything towards the best loving possible ultimately comes down to priorities, or just out-and-out laziness. Can it really be more complicated than that?

Reap What You Sow
I know that few, if any, of us start off our sex lives with the perfect set of experiences, the perfect education, the perfect nurturing parents, the perfect bodies. Starting from a less than ideal position, we wade through all of society’s fucked up messages and misrepresentations of sex. For some, the journey is more fraught with disaster than others. It’s a crap shoot, especially because so much is dependent on other people and other people are so goddamn flakey/sadistic/stupid/insecure/fill-in-the-blank.

For that reason, I’m inclined to make a million qualifications here because I don’t want to be insensitive to those who have so many legitimate reasons in their lives why my personal standards are unattainable. I’m a man. I’m straight. I don’t know your perspective. I don’t know your life. I can’t say what you need. I can’t say what you want. I can’t speak for you.

Merely suggesting something as radical getting more sleep, not smoking, eating healthy, not drinking too much, getting exercise, practicing yoga and meditation, strengthening and toning the sex muscles, reducing stress — many folks will feel put upon by the insinuation of having to do anything more than they are already doing. Who has time for anything else when time and energy is already stretched so thin? These are not the kind of convenient answers that we like to hear.

Where’s the magic pill or the latest medical breakthrough? Is sex really that important that it’s worth becoming a smartass sex geek?

At no other time in history has the knowledge been so readily accessible to those lucky enough to live in a free society. Never have we been so empowered to overcome whatever real or perceived shortcomings that bar the path to our and our partner’s sexual fulfillments. Never have we been so privileged and fortunate to make sex a priority on par with the other big stuff in life. Sure, it’s hard work not taking sex for granted. But the more I put into it, the more I’m convinced it’s worth it.

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