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This Week in Sex   
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June 16, 2000


Curious, George?



A group of British mums is up in arms this week over the re-release of a
seven-year-old book designed to teach kids about sex. Mummy Laid an Egg,
by Babette Cole, features a savvy brother and sister who decide that the coy manner in which their parents explain sex — something about a tube and some seed — isn’t cutting it. The book contains drawings of a relatively graphic nature —
including one which shows male and female genitals with an arrow and the
caption “place in here.” Aimed at kids five and older, the book also
features a series of diagrams showing how “mummies and daddies fit
together,” including how they fit together on a skateboard, on a Space
Hopper (an inflatable children’s toy), and while dangling from a hot-air
balloon. Said outraged mum Sandra Cook, “I want my daughter and her friends to use
Space Hoppers and skateboards and balloons for their proper purpose.” A
spokesman for the publisher said there were no plans to withdraw the
book.




All Too Direct Marketing




Also across the pond, the British government announced this week that sex workers are no longer allowed to place their cards in London’s ubiquitous red phone booths. The legislation comes after British Telecom estimated that they remove some 150,000 of the advertisements each month from their seven hundred booths. Home Office Minister Charles Clarke didn’t announce details of the legislation, but he did say that numbers advertised in the phone booths might be blocked.


    

So how’s Dr. Who going to find his escorts?



Command Z! Command Z!



A little advice for pre-teen boys about to participate in mass ritual
circumcision: get there early.


    

That’s the lesson to be gleaned from a nasty little episode that went down last week in Ankara,
Turkey, where doctors staged a two-day circumcision marathon (quick poll:
Who thinks that sounds like a good idea?). More than two hundred boys were snipped
in accordance with Muslim tradition, which requires boys to be circumcised
before they reach puberty. But when it got down to the final two boys, the understandably exhausted docs ended up taking a touch more than they needed to, and the Turkish kids found themselves in emergency surgery to have their organs stitched back on. Local health
service chief Ismet Nardal assured the press that “the operation was
successful,” though he noted that they won’t know until later whether or
not the two boys’ sexual function have been impaired.



Quotes of the Week



“I do have naked pictures of all my ex-girlfriends, but when I asked
whether I could publish them the overwhelming response was ‘No Way!’ So I
decided I would just re-create these photographs.”




— Photographer Mark Helfrich, whose recent book Naked
Pictures of My Ex-Girlfriends
would perhaps be better titled Naked
Pictures of a Bunch of Models.
Among those duped by Helfrich’s project
were, ahem, us.





“I don’t think I could do this in the middle of the day in front of
Macy’s.”




— Photographer and Nerve regular Spencer Tunick, on his trademark nude group pictures, after a judge permitted him a fifteen-minute photo shoot at dawn in Brooklyn.





“As a gay man I am perfectly happy with my sexuality and my life. I can
honestly say that the deepest longings of my heart are satisfied.”




Elton John, writing in London’s Spectator, in response
to a Catholic cardinal’s assertion that the homosexual lifestyle can’t
“respond to the deepest longings of the human heart.”









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©2000 Dan Reines and Nerve Publishing