A mildly sadistic friend of mine posted this on my Facebook wall:
It could piss me off if I let it. The idea that this dude might be taken seriously as a candidate for president is either laughable or COMPLETELY FUCKING TERRIFYING, and for my own mental health I simply MUST choose to laugh. I took the 2004 election very seriously and it nearly killed me. I’m not exaggerating. When Kerry conceded, my knees failed, I collapsed on the couch and started oozing fluids from every orifice on my face. It was exactly like that scene in “Transamerica” where Felicity Huffman loses her shit and sobs, gasping like she’s been socked in the gut, with drool hanging like stalactites from her wide-open mouth. I spent three weeks after the election unable to taste food or write complete sentences or sleep more than 4 hours in a row. I lost almost 15 pounds. (“Emily, you look great! How’d you do it?” “Stress and depression.” “…Oh.”)
So for my own wellbeing, I’m allowing myself to experience this video as I would a quiz show where I, a member of the viewing audience, know the answer, and the person on the show is fumbling and stumbling and guessing and flubbing. Meanwhile I’m shouting the answer* tauntingly at the screen and calculating how many washer-drier combos I would be winning if I were on the show.
If I viewed it as a Q&A with a guy who stood a chance at being President, I’d throw my computer out the window and then bash it to pieces with a sledgehammer. I’d rage and sob and scream. I would spend an awful lot of time with my computer away at tech support and an awful lot of money on therapy and antidepressants if I were paying serious attention to the primaries. So I’m ignoring them as best I can, and viewing what I can’t avoid with the detachment of a Buddhist.
And that is how a sex nerd copes with Republican primaries. Ignorance and detached humor.
I must add, if he had played this for the laughs it got:
“I’m just gonna tell you from my own personal life, abstinence works.”
I might have found myself actually liking Perry, if for nothing else, for his comfort with his own lack of sexual appeal. Self-awareness is a good trait in a candidate.
Alas, he failed to notice the humor. He probably also failed to note that he could very well be conflating “not having intercourse” with “not having a vagina.” Nothing beats being male for making sure you don’t get pregnant, so here’s a sex nerd top sex tip: if you’re going to choose abstinence as your pregnancy prevention strategy, choose a back-up method like not having a vagina and uterus, just in case you accidentally have sex.
*Teaching abstinence doesn’t work to prevent pregnancy and STIs for a large number of reasons, but one important and rarely appreciated reason is that abstinence as a harm reduction strategy has the highest failure rate of any method – very approximately 50%. People just SUCK at using abstinence. You think they’re bad at using condoms? You should see them try not to have sex!