The editors think “sleeping with someone” means snuggling really hard for the whole night and loving each other. That’s how babies get made.
Jennifer: I think many women have a notion that not sleeping with a man on the first date will cause him to stick around. In my experience – and through talking to my male friends – men don’t ditch you because you sleep with them on the first date, men ditch you because you’re the kind of girl who is obsessively focused on how to make a man stick around. It’s not so much the sleeping with as it is the squealing like a lobotomized schoolgirl – even if only in your head – about how he’s OMG THE ONE – when you’ve known him a total of 7 hours. If you go about your life afterwards without focusing on him too much, being polite and somewhat available, but also willing to walk away at any second if you’re not getting what you want out the relationship, well, it’s been my experience that men are MUCH more likely to stick with you.
Ashley: Am I supposed to argue as if I disagree here? Like: Fuck you, Jennifer. Clearly, if you do things that bottom-feeding women’s magazines say and memorize the countless tips and are the sort of person preoccupied with “snagging” a “guy,” you are going to attract really great men who are thoughtful and interesting and driven and talented. And they’re going to want to wife you!
Jennifer: Oh no! The editors agree!
Ashley: I don ‘t like the cut of your jib.
Jennifer: I think women who believe that not sleeping with a man on a first date ensures that he will love you are simple minded morons. Men’s interest has little to do wth sex unless sex is the only thing you have to offer. I think.
Ashley: We need to find a way to argue with each other about this.
Jennifer: Oh, phooey. No, I’ll just type more words.There is a wonderful quotation in Peter Pan, of all places!
[Mrs. Darling] was a lovely lady, with a romantic mind and such a sweet mocking mouth. Her romantic mind was like the tiny boxes, one within the other, that come from the puzzling East, however many you discover there is always one more; and her sweet mocking mouth had one kiss on it that Wendy could never get, though there is was, perfectly conspicuous in the right-hand corner… [Mr. Darling] got all of her, except the innermost box and the kiss. He never knew about the box, and in time he gave up trying for the kiss. Wendy thought Napoleon could have got it, but I can picture him trying, and then going off in a passion, slamming the door.
Ashley: Peter Pan is so weirdly erotic.
Jennifer: I know. I think there’s something to that, though. That idea of keeping something for yourself. Always have some innermost kiss that no one ever quite gets. It’s the quality of something elusive that makes women interesting, not just when they will or won’t spread their legs.
Ashley: If someone tried to initiate sex on a first date with me, I would not go on a second.
Ashley: Yeah, that’s not my scene. I mean, I wouldn’t be pissed about it. And this isn’t a moral judgment of any kind.
Jennifer: I’d be offended, probably – unless it was a man I desperately wanted to sleep with. And then I would be too busy to be offended, because I’d be having sex. But that’s happened hardly ever.
Ashley: I’m too private. Sex with strangers has absolutely no appeal and it takes a long time for someone not to be a stranger. So someone who wants to have sex on the first date is, in all likelihood, fundamentally incompatible with me.
Jennifer: I generally feel the same way. The times – fine, time – that I have deviated from that are times when there had been a history beforehand.
Ashley: Which is consistent with what you’re saying.
Jennifer: But if you see a man, and want to sleep with him on the first date, heavens, why not? Just be able to be comfortable never seeing him again. Always, on some level, even if you’ve been with someone for years, be aware that you might never see them again and feel that while you’d be sad life would still go on, and you would be okay, because you’d still be you. I think the real risk of first date sex is just that it might make YOU more emotionally attached. Basically, if it’s going to make you go all bunny boiler, know that’s not a good decision for you. So hold off. Fair? If you’re capable of enjoying it and feeling that if you never see him again you will always think of him fondly, well, how wonderful! By all means! Sex away! Look, on a first date, I’m not standing in the bathroom thinking “omg, I hope he grabs my boob!” That line of thinking is hilarious and insane to me. I’d be trying to figure out if I even liked him. Judging. I’d be sitting there judging. I love that stuff.
Ashley: This is boring. Why are you so oppressed by the patriarchy?
Jennifer: BUT I’M NOT. This entire conversation has been presented by my smooth European alter-ego, Ellen Olenska. Ellen fucks when she feels like it, then tosses them cab fare. She keeps her high heels on the entire time. Ellen loves danger for other people in the sack.
Ashley: I’m terrified of you.
Jennifer: If I opened m mouth to speak now, you would see that my accent has become Romanian. I mean, dude, that thing about “be aware that one day you’ll die alone?” I don’t know if I actually do that, in practice. Even though intellectually I’m very aware of that. I think there are times I’ve taken that intermost kiss, stuck it in the innermost box, wrapped it with some Easter Egg printed paper and presented it to people.
Ashley: Your labia are typing this, aren’t they? I’m never going to sleep again. You know I have a sleep disorder. This is terrible.
Jennifer: I’m clutching a high heel in my labia. Sorry, Ellen Olenska is.
Ashley: LIKE THE SARLACC! Oh my god. I’m never sleeping again. Boba Fett is trapped inside of you. Is this how I lost my keys? My sunglasses? WHERE DID MY SHOE GO?
Jennifer: Ellen “ate” them.
Ashley: At least this explains why those sides of beef and turkey drumsticks keep disappearing from the office refrigerator. I can find some solace in that.
Jennifer: Okay, but there’s a point that there’s probably some difference here between what we know is true and the way we actually behave. While I do believe in maintaining, always, some emotional distance for your own benefit as well as the fact that it will make you more attractive to others, there have been men whose facebook profiles I have checked like 5 times a day. That’s not very “even Napoleon couldn’t get that kiss!”
Ashley: Well, I’m completely consistent. But yes, you have all this WASPY affectation about intellectual distance and stunted emotional development and blah blah blah Valium blah blah blah, but in practice, your giant disembodied vagina is snail-sliming around the office right now, frothing with much indolence atop the water cooler and beating its lips like some kind of fleshy pink Mothra.
Jennifer: You understand me. The innermost kiss – it’s yours Ashley! It’s always been for you!
Ashley: I will be the Boba Fett in your vaginal sarlacc pit, gestating there, adoring you from within.
Jennifer: I will shut you out afterwards to keep you wanting more. You won’t hear from me for like a week. I will not return any of your texts. Then on Friday I’ll be like “dinner? Half an hour? The Four Seasons?” You will drop whatever you are doing and run.
Ashley: Do you want a foot rub?
Jennifer: You know the heels stay on.
Ashley: My hands and heart, they bleed for you.