Love & Sex

Talking to Strangers: Los Angeles, CA

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Nerve asks deeply personal questions to people we just met.

Adriana, 30

What do you do for work? 
I'm a freelance art director and a yoga instructor.

Does that get you laid? 
Nope.

Why not? 
'Cause I'm a prude!

Why? 
I guess I judge the idea of doing what I want to do.

Are you saying you're sexually frustrated? 
Yes!

Do you chew a lot of ice? 
Nope. But I chew a lot of gum.

When was the last time you had sex? 
About a month ago.

That's not so bad! With who? 
My ex-husband. Well… the divorce isn't final. We're separated for now.

How's that working out? I'm guessing you miss him if you're still sleeping with him?
Well, I sleep with him because I don't want to have another person under my belt!

How many people do you have under your belt now?
Three?

Are you sure? 
Yes, three. Sure.

Are you just waiting for the "right one" to make sure your numbers don't go up? What are you waiting for?
Maybe I'm waiting for an actual divorce. That might help me feel less weird about the whole thing. Technically, I'm still married, so it just feels weird. No… actually, I think I'm just waiting to stop judging myself for wanting to be with someone else.

Are you saying that you want to be a slut, but you feel bad? 
Yes!

So, if you weren't judging the word "slut," would you be one? 
Yes!

So all you need to do is let go of the stigma and then you'll start having sex with everyone? 
Probably.

How long you think that's gonna take? 
Too long.

How long were you married? 
We've been together for nine years. Married for six of those.

And you still like having sex with him? 
I do! It's amazing.

Wow! After nine years? What's the secret of being attracted to the same person for nine years?
We both just keep ourselves in shape. It's a total physical thing. The emotional connection is what's missing.

I always thought people stop seeing their significant other as attractive once they've known them for nine years. 
Nope. He's hot.

He's hot, but you're divorcing him to find an emotional connection. That takes courage, my friend. 
Yeah. Well… it'll be courageous when I stop sleeping with him.

Sean, 34

What do you do for a living?
I'm self-employed.

Does that help you meet a lot of women? 
Yeah. I make my own schedule, so I'm always out. Anywhere. The library. The club. Coffeeshop. Grocery store. Farmer's market.

That's a good one, the farmer's market. Do you have a pick-up line that you use? "Want to squeeze my banana? It's organic." No? I'm single. 
I don't ever use lines. I'm just myself. Different every time.

Are you dating someone now? 
Kind of. It's complicated.

You just haven't had "the talk" yet? 
No. It's just that she's perfect for me.

I'm not hearing a problem. 
Well… we both have these careers we're trying to pursue. And we love each other too much, so all we want to do is spend time together, and it's getting in the way of our dreams. Love is a distraction.

So, are you just trying to figure out the right balance so you can be in love and work on your careers? 
I don't think there is such a thing as balance. When you fall in love with someone, you can't control anything. If you try to control love, it'll just self-destruct. Love is natural. Love is spontaneous.

Why are you laughing? 
Because I just said that to her the other day, and she called me a "wholesome pimp." She says I always know the right things to say, but I swear it's not planned.

So, are you choosing work over love? 
It's not work. It's just that if we were to get married and have kids, it wouldn't work without us having solid careers. We would want to give our kids a great education. We'd want to have a really fun life. And we just don't have the resources right now.

Are you saying you don't have enough money to be in love? 
No. Love and money are two separate things. When you fall in love with someone, you want to spend the rest of your life with them. And it's not possible right now. I need to get things straight in my life, and love is holding me back right now.

So what are you gonna do? 
I don't know. We'll see. We could take the next six months to just work on our careers, but that's scary. Life is too short. I don't know where my head is at right now.

Good luck. 
Thanks. I love this woman more than any other woman in my life.

Emily, 22 & Chris, 25

How long have you been dating? 
Chris: We just got married.
Emily: This is our honeymoon!

Congratulations! How did you meet? 
Chris: I was running a young adults' church group, and we met through there. We're also both teachers and getting degrees, so I had seen her already and thought she was cute. I asked her out for ice cream.

How did you propose? 
Chris: When I went to her small town, she showed me a really special beach and told me it meant a lot to her, so I always remembered that and that's where I took her when I wanted to ask her. 
Emily: And he asked my dad and everything! He was a real gentleman. 
Chris: I asked her dad for permission in the bathroom. I followed him in there, but I waited until he was done at the urinal.

Did he wash his hands? 
Chris: Yes. He did. We both washed hands before shaking hands.

So what was the moment that you knew Emily was the one for you? 
Chris: I was working at a high school, and I had a very heavy workload. She would come in on the weekends and help me. I don't know if there was one specific moment, but I had a pretty good idea when I saw her at the library filing away books for me.

So, you love her because she helps you with your homework? 
Chris: Yes! In my family, love isn't just flowers. It's sharing the load.

What about you, Emily? How did you know Chris was the one? 
Emily: I think we had been dating for a couple of months when I went to Disneyland with my family. I missed him so much that I couldn't take it.

Did you guys have sex before marriage? 
Emily: No, we didn't! We waited.

So you're each other's firsts? 
Chris: No. She was my first. She had been with some people, but then she had a change of heart. In the Christian community, we say she "got saved."
Emily: In all my other relationships, it seemed like sex was a priority, and not love. So, when I got with him, I didn't want that anymore.

How long did you date before you got married then? 
Chris: One and a half years! It was really hard.

So, it's your honeymoon! How did it go? 
Chris: We're doing all right. We managed to mix it up.

Mix it up? You just started. 
Chris: You've got to mix it up! 
Emily: It's good.

Stephanie, 26

What do you do for a living?
I'm a web producer for a TV show.

Does that every get you laid? 
I have a boyfriend, so I get laid quite often. But it's not my job that does it.

What gets you laid then? 
Being in a relationship and being horny often.

How often do you guys have sex? 
About five times a week. We've been together eight years.

Whoa! Five times a week after eight years.
Well, I really like him.

How do you keep it exciting after all that time? 
We did break up a couple times, for a year each time. So, I feel like we appreciate each other more since we know what it's like to lose each other. Each time, I dated other people, and none of them were as good as him in any way — even sex. So, we just appreciate each other and can't keep our hands off each other.

So, breaking up is the key to staying with someone? 
Exactly.

What do you say when you get hit on? 
I don't usually tell people right away that I'm in a serious relationship, but I would never give someone my phone number. I think it's totally okay to flirt and feel like you've still got it.

What are some tips you have for guys to keep things sexy in the bedroom after eight years? 
Well, I don't know if guys can control this, but my boyfriend can always get it up, so that makes me feel good. And he often molests me in the middle of the night, so that makes me feel good too. I guess the key is to make your woman feel wanted and beautiful. And keep yourself in good shape so you can do a good job during the action. No girl wants to have to be on top all the time because you don't have the energy.

Kellen, 31

What do you do for a living?
I'm a nanny.

And does that get you laid? 
Nope.

What does? 
My willingness to please.

Good answer! Are you pleasing someone lately? 
Not really.

How can a guy get your attention? 
A nice old car is a good start. I wish I were getting hit on more often. Ideally, I'd like a line that shows they think about the important things in life or current events.

So, your ideal guy would come up to you and ask you what you think about the Republican primary? 
We'd talk about the Keystone Pipeline, perhaps.

Uh, it sounds like you date some riveting folks. 
I'm just looking for a Jewish cowboy.

Does that exist? 
There are a few.

You just mean rugged, right? Not someone who actually lassos cows?
I mean… I have cows. My family has a cattle ranch by San Francisco. I'd love a guy who can hang out on the ranch, Davin a little, and hang out with the gays.

What's Davin? 
It's the way the Jews pray.

And your ranch has gays on it? 
Yep! It's a lesbian cattle ranch. My moms are lesbians. I have four lesbian moms. Two of them live on a cattle ranch. So, I need someone who's gonna assimilate. It's pretty hard to find.

Have you ever dabbled in lesbianism? 
I ate pussy in high school.

How did it taste? 
Salty? It wasn't my thing.

Blow jobs? 
Love 'em.

How do you think having lesbian moms has affected your sex life? 
I think I may have tried to overcompensate by being overly heterosexual. I was a whore in high school.

How about now? 
I wish I were getting laid more often. I feel like adulthood really puts a damper on your sex life.

Andrew, 45

I see you're wearing SpongeBob shoes. Do you have kids?
I have a daughter.

Does that affect your dating life? 
I don't date. I don't have time. Plus I'm taking a break from women. I have about two ex-wives already. The first one went and turned gay. And the other one just kicked me out a few months ago.

What's it like having two ex-wives? 
Expensive. Got married in Vegas twice. I won't get married in Vegas again. And if I ever do get married again, I will definitely do the pre-nup thing.

When you were standing at those two altars in Vegas, did you kind of know in the back of your mind that these women weren't the ones? 
Well… The first one, yes. We're both Australian, and it was my first year here in the U.S., so it was sort of a "safety in numbers" thing. And the second one… She was Canadian. I knocked her up. We couldn't have a little bastard running around.

Neither marriage was like, "Oh, I'm so in love and I can't wait to marry this woman?"
Not really. I had more hope with the second though. I was excited to have a baby.

And dating is on hold now? 
I can't afford it! I'm paying alimony and child support.

Who's better in bed: Americans, Australians, or Canadians? 
Oh, I don't know. I've been through a lot of looks at my age though. Everything from the take-the-pants-off-and-an-airbag-explodes-in-your-face to a Brazilian. You never know. Doesn't matter where she's from. But, my last wife was really fun because she liked girls too. We would have lots of fun picking up girls together.

How did you guys do that? At bars? 
No. There are places you can go. Websites. We were swingers for four years, and it was freakin' fantastic. I have to say, I've had the most amazing sex life. I had sex standing up in the lobby of the Hard Rock Hotel.

With your ex-wife? 
No. This was when I was young and virile.

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