Sporting a do is better than a don’t, because the do, apparently, reduces the risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Using a nationally representative probability sample, doctors at UCSF discovered that extreme grooming of pubic hair may create epidermal microtears that serve as conduits for STIs, or alternatively, extreme groomers have higher incidences of STIs because they engage in more adventurous sex. Curious findings no doubt but in either case the research relied upon a notoriously capricious methodology, the one-shot self- report questionnaire. As noted in the previous post (The Metaphoric Center of Sex) one of the three truisms of sex is that people lie like hell about it. Perhaps folks who are willing to admit extreme grooming are more willing to admit STIs too, which in itself would account for the covariation. The real issue however is not so much the risks of pubic pruning, but the bankruptcy of safe sex. Condoms suck. Putting time and money into developing pleasurable alternatives to condoms safeguards sex for everyone. Lest we forget, we’re all denizens in a tangled world of desire.

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