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Sex and Sucking Toes



What is sex? This is a question that has troubled me for some time, and soon, it appears, we will have a definitive answer. Next week our president will go before the grand jury and tell them if he had sex with what’s her name—is it Monica Lipinsky, the ice skater, or Tara Lewinsky, the chubby girl on Beverly Hills 90210? Our president has so many girlfriends it’s hard to keep them all straight.

But back to sex. Before our president tells the grand jury whether or not he had sex with the young lady who claims to have a blue dress stained with bodily fluids, as well as dirty poems by the famous onanist Walt Whitman—dress and poems supposedly tokens of the commander in chief’s affection—it will have to be firmly established exactly what constitutes sex.

Remember that the leader of the free world denied that he had sex with that woman. He actually said sexual relations, which may, or may not be the same as sex.

Now, personally, I don’t care if he had sex or even sexual relations with that woman. (Thank goodness he didn’t say that girl, because then people would think he was talking about Marlo Thomas, who happens to be married to Phil Donahue, whose sex with Marlo is entirely normal, except for the times when Marlo makes Phil wear Groucho nose-glasses during oral sex, at least according to gossip and gadfly Bud Weed, who has an endless fund of such naughty tidbits.)

I agree with the Victorians—anything goes vis-a-vis sexual relations as long as you don’t do it in the streets and scare the horses. Today, however, what our president does with Tara or Monica or Enid in his study or his bedroom or at Camp David or on the ninth green at the Burning Bush Country Club is something we have a right to know. Furthermore, if he lied about it (in our century, the only people known ever to have lied to anyone about sex were Marv Albert and Tom Welch—in recorded history, there is no evidence that women have ever lied about sex) the trusting American public, then our guardians of public, not to say pubic, virtue will demand impeachment, house arrest, cold showers, sex counseling, in addition to having his picture appear on Internet sites listing known sex offenders.

But what is sex? Time magazine took a poll to see what sorts of acts counted as sex. I used to think that what Frank Joklik said about the Olympic spirit could also be said about sex: you know it when you see it. Not any more, as evidenced by the Time poll: 87 percent said oral sex was sex, and 7 percent said it wasn’t. (What Time didn’t report was that another 6 percent said oral sex wasn’t sex, but something that induced a sense of suffocation.)

As far as touching each other in the genital area either directly or through clothing, 69 percent said it was sex and 25 percent said it wasn’t sex. That 25 percent is a lot of people, but Time’s polling sample contained an inordinate number of tailors, cosmetic waxers, and professional quarterbacks. The missing 6 percent hadn’t touched anyone else but themselves, and only when bathing or going to the bathroom.

The most surprising statistic from Time’s poll was whether romantic kissing constituted sexual relations. Forty percent said yes, and 53 percent said no. More than half of Americans said there was nothing sexual about romantic kissing! The image comes to mind of millions of Americans out there casually and unsexually exchanging saliva, sucking tongues, and transferring bits of broccoli from mouth to mouth. Instead of a friendly handshake, millions of Americans are apparently greeting the plumber or the cleaning lady with a prolonged and passionate French kiss.

So I’m still confused about what counts as sex these days. There is a glimmer of hope, however. I was thumbing through a recent edition of Podiatry Today and came across another poll, this one having to do with whether toe-sucking qualified as sex (remember those photos of Princess Fergie getting her toes sucked by her bald-headed financial advisor?). The podiatrists were firm in their convictions! They know what sex is: 95 percent said toe-sucking was sex, and only 5 percent said it was part of a pedicure.

Therefore, until I see a genuine photo of our president sucking Monica/Tara/Enid’s toes, I vote to keep him in office. Stand up for America!