Sex is back! Well at least for me it is. Here's a little background: I'm a prude… well, kinda. I'm more of an undercover prude. I love sexual topics, I really do. I just don't like speaking publicly about them. I often try to steer clear of sexual topics and innuendos, but sometimes I wish I could throw some around. And just not some weak “that's what she said” stuff; I'm talking about some downright naughty stuff.
While recently shooting a web series with my friend and comedy partner, Rocco, such a situation occurred. We were shooting with two incredibly funny and cute female friends at Rocco's house. Being the gracious host he is, Rocco showed the girls where the amenities were located and when referring to the bathroom he said, “Here's the bathroom, where you girls can fix your makeup, hair, take a shower, maybe shower together if you're pressed for time.”
That line was a direct hit, it killed! The girls' playful smiles and giggles attested that. As I sat there, I went into the recesses of my mind to play one of my all-time favorite games: “Why can't you be like other people!” I wish I said that; why can't I bring myself to say things like that to girls? They ate that up with a knife and fork and asked for seconds. You see where I'm going with this.
Then and there I decided there has to be a better way! A Festivus for the rest of… no, seriously -- I knew it was time for a change. I had to become more comfortable with sexuality. So I went to the experts. The fine folks at The Pleasure Chest.
The Pleasure Chest's motto is: Making Life Sexier since 1971. It's the sex toy and novelty store with locations in several states, including my home state of New York. Besides being a novelty store, The Pleasure Chest hosts weekly sexual workshops. The topics range from “how tos” to talks about human sexuality. And the best part? They're free!
According to the store manager, The Pleasure Chest believes sex education should be easily accessible to the public. So I got brave, put on my big boy pants and I went downtown. Then I was told the workshops take place at their Upper East Side location-- so I had to go uptown. It was a small price to play for the educational and informative evening.
Upon arrival, I would be greeted by a cavalcade of dildos, butt plugs, paddles and nipple clamps. I have never been so taken back and yet so comfortable in my life. Now for those of you wondering what type of crowd goes to a sex shop, know you're not alone. I wondered about that too.
Would I see leather clad mistresses cruising the aisles with their ball-gagged slaves? Not really. Who did I see? Normal everyday people. There was a scrub-clad nurse buying lube, and an older gentleman looking at bondage ropes with a young lover. There was a sharply dressed couple who looked like they attend sex parties with Donald and Melania. You know, pretty normal people. It was like walking down the aisles of your local CVS, but instead of condoms and shampoo, there were condoms and non-adhesive bondage tape… seriously.
So here's what I learned:
I pride myself on being punctual, so I usually show up for engagements a healthy 30 minutes early. This gave me time to look over The Pleasure Chest inventory. Boy, was I in for a ride!
They literally have it EVERYTHING! Any type of toy for any type of kink imaginable. Whips, paddles and dildos, oh my! And what a stupendous selection of dildos. They have 'em in every shape and size. You get a dildo! You get a dildo! And you get a dildo! The Pleasure Chest is all about inclusiveness, so if safer sex is what you're after, they have you covered with a wide variety of condoms and dental dams.
You can line up by the dildos
“You can line up by the dildos” is exactly what the young shop worker nonchalantly said to all of us who were there to attend the class.
It served as a great ice-breaker and clearly set the tone for the evening. We then proceeded to a basement reminiscent of the one used in "10 Cloverfield Lane." But sadly, John Goodman was not there to greet us, which was really too bad; I always wanted to know if he thought "Roseanne's" final episode was awful as well.
So what was waiting for us in the basement?
Meet Susan. I swear that's what they named her.
Kink: Grown up cops and robbers
BDSM was the topic, but that would evolve into a talk about kink at large. When you decide to get raunchy and kinky with someone, you enter a whole new world: a fantasy zone. You can be who you want to and do what you want, as long as it's cool with your partner, which brings us to the next and most important point.
Consent and Communication
“Sensations without consent is not kink, it's abuse.” That point could not be stressed enough. Even knee-deep in the throes of passion, one should always concern him or herself with the feelings and wishes of their partner.
It's the cornerstone of being a good lover and a good human being. A good lover also knows how to communicate sexually. Our instructors implored us to dump the stock, “so what are you into?” line, and instead uses more specific terms such as, “Are you into this (insert sexual act or action here)?
Specifics are your friends. Use them! There's nothing worse than beating around the bush, unless what you want is to beat around the bush… yes, I made that joke, and I stand by every word!
If you're a novice at kink, our instructors suggest starting with some simple role play. It adds structure and allows you to get out of your own head and into someone else's. (I was tempted to spin a joke out of that one.) Whether it's teacher/student, cop/robber, boss/secretary, even Kanye/ T. Swift, just make sure you immerse yourself in the character and the scene. It's sort of like improv but with more sex. And we all know there's a ton of sex in improv… a TON. Of course, there is. Why do you think so many people do it?
As it was said in some credit card commercial, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” For me, the class was that step. There's so much more I could tell you about like, the different types of bondage ropes and the orgy that ensued after class, but that would be a lie. What's true is this: Like the Titanic, it's only the tip of this iceberg.
There's more to come from my continued journey, so stay tuned.