Oh Hi Mark


You might notice that I’m not Balls McPhearson, you might also not have noticed that. Either way, Balls has put his advice column on hiatus to seek “the wondrous power of instant worldwide telecommunication networks.” I’m Viv Blanco, and I’ll be your new guide through this wondrous world of emotions, conflict, and penises.

Dear Balls Viv, 

I have a “friend” who is having sex with 2 people at the same time. Does that make her (or him) a slut? 

First, I’m just going to rephrase this question, since my infinitely powerful intellect can already feel your eyes glazing over a week in the future at the first mention of the words “slut shaming.” I hope this is okay, and if not, too bad. By the time you’re reading this, these words have already been immortalized in print and you’re just going to have to deal with it.

I have a “friend” who is having sex with 2 people at the same time. Is that wrong? 

I like this question a little bit better because it allows me to introduce my methodology for determining the responsibility of your sexual activity!

Here’s a simple checklist:

Are you being safe? 

Are all parties consenting? Are you using protection? Are you making sure not to tear anything? Are you avoiding back-alley sex with four strangers in a windowless van full of duct tape, balaclavas, and burlap head-sacks?

Are you being honest? 

Don’t keep secrets. Don’t lie. Are you in a monogamous relationship? Don’t go out behind your SO’s back. Are you in a non-monogamous relationship? Then make sure your partner and your SO know.

Are you having fun? 

Never let anyone or anything convince you that you “should be” doing something or the other sexually. You do you. Laugh, smile, and dress up in funny hats if that’s what you like. I mean it, you do you.

If you can confidently check all three of those boxes, congratulations! You’re all good! If you can’t quite so confidently check all three of those boxes, maybe it’s time to reconsider.

So, having sex with two people at the same time? Sure, go for it. I mean, your “friend” should go for it. Try for 10 if yo—“your friend” would like; shoot for the stars.

On Music To Play During Sex 

“If there’s any possibility of sex, do not leave your music library on ‘shuffle all.’” – XKCD #400, “Important Life Lesson” 

I’d like to, if I may, take a small moment to talk a little bit about the music to have on, and music not to have on when you’re getting hot and heavy. Now, I’m sure you have nothing but the most immaculate of taste in music, but we all have music in our collections that we skip, and I know I’m not ready to try and get intimate to the alluring sounds of Tiny Tim’s “Living in the Sunlight.”

Okay, yeah, Tiny Tim is decidedly “not sexy,” but what is? Well, I’ll tell you what else isn’t sexy: R. Kelly, Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On,” and generic funk music. If you are at a complete loss for ideas and are resorting to music you’ve found in porn and rom-coms, I’ve got a small list of albums that you can put on that are neutral enough to play any time, but won’t ruin your mood when the time comes.

Collide – Beats Antique

Metalfingers Presents: Special Herbs Vol. 1-4 – MF DOOM

All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone – Explosions In The Sky

BBNG2 – Badbadnotgood

11:11 – Rodrigo y Gabriella

These albums range from spicy (Collide) to… well, the opposite of spicy (All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone); hopefully you should find something to suit your tastes there.

On Pick-Up-Artists 

Gals, be on the look-out for pick-up-artists this week; these self-proclaimed “Alphas” are going to be out in droves this week to take advantage of girls who have regrets about being single for Valentine’s Day. Here’s some signs that the guy you’re talking to might be a manipulative bastard who’s just trying to use you:

1) They try to make eye contact, then approach you immediately after making it.

2) They try to break the “touch barrier” very early. They might hold your hand for just a little too long after shaking your hand, or they might hug you very early in conversation, despite the fact you don’t know them.

3) They’ll “neg” you; this is an attempt to play on your insecurities by fitting small insults into conversation. To quote a “seduction guide” on why PUAs will do this, it’s to “blast through the bitch shield.” These are going to be small things, like implying you did a bad job of dying your hair, or commenting on how you need to go fix your mascara because the clumps “make you ugly.”

Even if you are just looking for a one-night stand or hookup, try to avoid PUAs. It’s not worth the risk of spending the time with someone who thinks so little of you, and it’s definitely not worth justifying their hateful and demeaning world-view.

To Pick-Up-Artists 

If you read that above section and think I misrepresented pick-up-artists, or want to call me a “worthless beta” and a “feminist bitch”:

1) E-mail me at viv@synthesis.net with constructive criticism.

2) Get fucked with a spike.

To everyone else, single or coupled (or more), have a wonderful Valentine’s Day! Gorge yourself on dinner, chocolate, and debauchery; make sure to use protection, and e-mail me at viv@synthesis.net with any questions or commentary you might have.