Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Twelve times.

Figleaf's latest post about precious bodily fluids reminded me of an encounter that I had a few years ago, and have never quite managed to figure out.

I was living in the city that I'm going to call Nio Essia for blog purposes, just to mix up my science fictional names. The apartment building next to mine was under construction, and being the talkative animal that I am, I struck up a friendly acquaintanceship with the builders. They told me how once, while knocking out a wall, they discovered some sort of document from the late 1800s hidden inside, bearing the names of a woman who had lived there and her twelve (yes, twelve!) children. Their main comment on this discovery was "that woman spent too much time on her back".

I was so gobsmacked at this assertion that all I could muster was a blank stare and a feeble change of topic. Of course, it's both sexist and inappropriate to critique the sexual habits of a woman you've never met, but that was not the surprising thing. What dumbfounded me was the sheer illogic. Having sex twelve times in your life with your spouse is too much? Had they, these 40-ish construction workers, really had sex fewer then twelve times in their respective lives? One of them was married: did he not have sex with his wife? Or was the negative judgment only meant to apply to women who have sex more than twelve times in their lives? These seemed like excessively personal questions, so I didn't ask them (or maybe I'm just making excuses for being too slow on my feet).

I still have no idea what they could have been thinking.

Obligatory intro post

I'm Philadelphia Burke. It seems like as good an alias as any for someone (a) who is more confident in the power of her mind than in the beauty of her body and (b) who is plugged in.

I hope that this blog will be a good place for me to work out my thoughts about sex, books, popular culture, and relationships. I'm not looking to become famous or widely read; I just want a place to hash out ideas, and possibly start a few online conversations with people who are worth my time. If this blog attracts too much bullying, inspires too many people to hit on me, or makes me too worried about how I appear to some abstract audience, it's going to be summarily deleted. Until then, I expect it to be fun, so if you're reading, enjoy the ride.

Don't expect too many personal details from me, and don't expect the details I provide to be accurate. I'd like to keep this blog separate from, say, my worklife. If the author of this blog is Philadelphia Burke, then the person appearing in this blog is her alter-ego Delphi. (Well, hopefully not quite as idealized and plastic as Delphi.)

In summary, hello.