"The Tingler" is a handheld wand that has cascading metal prongs attached to the handle. The prongs are pliable, and the whole thing is made to flex and fit over your scalp, like a friendly electrocution cap. It looks ridiculous when you slide it down over your hair, but when you pull it back up, oh my. Does it ever feel good. Every nerve on your head pings to attention, and then surrenders, in wave after wave of tingles. Yes, it is a cranial orgasm.
Naturally, Three tries to incorporate "The Tingler" into the routine every night. He uses his most skilled, softly pleading voice. If he can reach "The Tingler" while his face is embedded in a pillow, he holds it up and waves it in my direction. I am relatively immune to his tactics, but the other night I realized he's going to use these moves on his girlfriends. And most of them will do whatever he wants, because girls are stupid.
I know that's a sweeping generalization, but I was a teenage girl once, and I really wanted boys to like me. I based many of my decisions on whether that would be the end result. So I fear for the boys' future dates.
I already have a plan in place to prevent unwanted pregnancy. I am going to by-pass the penii entirely, and speak directly to the vaginas. Figuratively, of course. I'm going to tell them to ignore all the wooing, the promises of forever love, and keep their most private of areas locked up. I love my boys enough to actively try and deny them sex. At least until they're eighteen, or gainfully employed and can afford birth control/child support. And I like to think I will love their girlfriends enough to do the same.
I know it sounds a little unreasonable. Even I doubt the success of the plan. But I still hope they will wait to share sex with someone they love. Someone independent, who can't be swayed by smooth talk. Someone who demands respect. Someone who wants them, but doesn't need them. Someone life-sharing worthy. Someone confident enough to use "The Tingler" on their own terms.
Today's verse, about sex...
[Lying in bed I think about you]
BY JOSHUA BECKMAN
Lying in bed I think about you,
your ugly empty airless apartment
and your eyes. It's noon, and tired
I look into the rest of the awake day
incapable of even awe, just
a presence of particle and wave,
just that closed and deliberate
human observance. Your thin fingers
and the dissolution of all ability. Lay
open now to only me that white body,
and I will, as the awkward butterfly,
land quietly upon you. A grace and
staying. A sight and ease. A spell
entangled. A span. I am inside you.
And so both projected, we are now
part of a garden, that is part of a
landscape, that is part of a world
that no one believes in.