Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sex Education with Mr. M

Although a young man, my 9th grade biology teacher Mr M had the demeanor of a much older, experienced teacher. The only human emotion he would display to his students was annoyance. He had shared only two personal facts with us: he was an identical twin whose twin had a similar job in a neighboring district and that he had recently fathered a child. Both of these facts were mind boggling: that there were two crabby automatons out there and that somehow he had done the dirty deed unless he had discovered a way to father a child without actually doing it. Possibly.

Only high performing students were allowed to take biology while in junior high. Mr M had the reputation of being an especially demanding teacher. His rule Neatness Counts kept my brother from taking his class. Though I was probably his best student, I remember him sighing when he had noticed that I had clumsily punctured my worm's alimentary canal during a dissection. My fellow students name for me: The Butcher. (On the other hand, I was one of the only students to remove the skull from my fetal pig without the brain's contents oozing out; the secret-use fingernails instead of the crude tools supplied).

I had missed out on the 7th grade sex class as somehow my permission slip was lost. In 5th grade we were treated to learning in a segregated by sex classroom the wonders of our changing body which turned out to be a long Kotex commercial. The whole period thing was news to me. I felt blind sided as everyone else knew. My mother meanly told me that I wouldn't have to worry about it for a long time as I was so unfeminine even though I started my growth spurt early.

Mr M spent a long time discussing venereal diseases. In those days, there were only two. By law, he was not allowed to discuss contraception but he made it clear that if one had sex outside of marriage, VD would probably result. Eventually he had to go into the mechanics of the sex act which he did in his robotic voice. According to him, one of the differences between men and women is what initiates desire: anything initiates desire in men. All they have to do is look or think of a woman and they are ready to go. To activate a woman, however,  takes work. They must be touched!! I wondered to myself how he came across this gem of information. Personal experience? Read it in an official textbook? He did father a child after all (how?) I had to laugh. Unfortunately I did it out loud and was kicked out of the classroom until I learned some manners.

He let me return the next day without me having to display that I had learned said manners and I refrained from telling him how wrong he was. I ended up missing his clinical description of the sex act, amusing according to my sources, but they dared not show it.

Reliable sex information in those days was hard to come by.  My friends and I purchased the breakthrough Everything You Wanted to Know About Sex but was afraid to ask a few years later. We bought it nervously as we were not sure if it was legal to sell us the book. As I looked the oldest, I bought it. Not that this book was all that reliable. For instance: how to tell if a woman really had an orgasm? Answer: she is covered with a bright red rash afterwards. I had never even heard the word orgasm to describe  anything the woman experienced. Maybe Mr M had mentioned it during my banishment.

Today I am an election day widow again. Steve is assigned to a nearby student ward that mainly foreign grad students live in. Sometimes only one or two voters show up the entire day at that particular polling place. He left before 6 am and I might not see him until 10 tonight. I am looking forward to no more robocalls for a while. Do they ever work? They just annoy me especially on my cell phone.

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