The Facts(?) of Life

I felt I would eventually have to tell you about the birds and the bees. Or, rather, I’d like to tell you about some of the people who tell us about the birds and the bees.

The sex guides we handle at the Book Fair can be divided into two basic categories: Real Ones and Fake Ones. The fake ones are easy to recognize if you look at the ratio of words to pictures. Real sex guides go in for instructions and warnings and insightful emotional sensitivity. (Hey, what better place to be all touchy-feely?) Fake sex guides, published by the people in the smutty magazine business, will have a sentence like “Now these are the parts of the body we’re talking about” and then twenty pages of uncaptioned photos.

But let’s talk about the real ones, or at least my two favorites. I won’t mention titles, because finding your way there is half the fun, but I can guarantee one or both of these will be available in the 2010 Book Fair. They will be found in the Health & Medicine section. (The fake ones will be found wrapped in plastic in Collectibles, and you WILL remember that there’s a security camera, won’t you?)

One is still in print, and can be purchased as a book alone, or in a deluxe set with book, video, and tube of massage oil. I have read the book and I have watched the video. Yes, friends, you may never know the extent of the work I go to for you, but there it is. And I can tell you something about sex you may not have known. People who have sex have very large hands, and they always spread them out flat right HERE, at waist level, whether it’s a still photo or a scene in the video. Oh, and people having sex always stand, sit, or loll at a side angle to a camera, so their hands can stay just HERE. Sex, apparently, is a matter of getting really close and then holding your hands out flat just HERE. Woe betide any adolescent seeking technical instruction from these photos. Can you hear the wailing? “No wonder I can’t get a date! My hands are too small!”

Maybe they’d have better luck with my favorite sex guide. This was produced in Japan decades ago, and used those wooden block modeling statues to take up the hundreds of positions explained in the book. Of course, some of the finer details of these positions cannot be shown because these wooden blocks have neither navel, nose, nor any other physical features: just arms, legs, chest, hips, and head. Just so this wouldn’t get too steamy, though, the “male” statue and the “female” statue are not depicted TOGETHER. No, the position taken up by the “female” is on the lefthand page, and the position taken up by the “male” on the facing page.

Fortunately, the baby boom was already well under way when this classic made it to the United States, or a lot of us might not be here at all.

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