Friday, March 16, 2012

March Author Series #12: No Sex Please! We're British by Jenny Twist

I always love having the fabulous Jenny Twist on here. In her usual wittiness, she shares something she was NOT inspired to write. Please read on to see why she insists on...
No Sex Please! We're British

I must have been about eight or nine when I first came across the concept of sex. One of the boys in my class announced that he knew where babies came from and proceeded to give a detailed description to the class. I was shocked to the core of my being! I told him just what I thought about his disgusting suggestions, and gave him several jolly good reasons why it couldn't possibly be true, finishing with “my Mummy and Daddy would never do a thing like that!”

This last argument was so compelling that I convinced the rest of the class, thus setting back their sex education by several years.

There was, at that time, no formal sex education in British schools. I think it was introduced when I was about thirteen or fourteen. By that time my knowledge of sex had increased a little. One of my friends was convinced that you could get pregnant by kissing and she took to brushing her teeth with a frequency and vigour that made me fear for her enamel. I, of course, was far too intelligent to believe in anything so ridiculous. I knew it was all to do with belly buttons. This belief was somewhat shaken when a copy of “Lady Chatterley's Lover” was circulated through the school with the rude bits thoughtfully marked by turning down the corner of the relevant pages. I read all these passages assiduously but was unable to make any sense of them. But I can tell you that it didn't mention belly buttons at all!

If you must spawn, please do so
responsibly!
Our formal sex education lesson was included in series of lessons headed “Hygiene”, which covered such arcane topics as “how to clean your gym-slip with a toothbrush” and “how to repair a ragged hem without shortening the garment” - information which was totally useless to us, as our mothers cleaned our tunics and any adjustments to skirt length were being made upwards, in order to conform with the mini-skirt revolution. The sex education lesson, however, looked like being of much more interest and we attended the class on that morning in a state of pleasurable anticipation.  The teacher, however, seemed rather ill-at-ease and spent some time shuffling papers on her desk before finally launching into a detailed description of the reproductive cycle of the frog. We exchanged bemused glances. This wasn't at all what we had been expecting. The teacher gamely struggled on, getting redder and redder with embarrassment until she finally reached the end of her reading. Then she closed her book and looked up at us for the first time. It must have been apparent from our expressions that we expected more.

“And similarly with human beings,” she said, and fled from the room.

Now, I don't know how it's done in your family, but I can assure you that no member of mine had ever been known to lay frog-spawn. Not to mention the nasty sticky business of having all those males clinging to you for dear life, doing unspeakable things behind your back.

Baffled, we left the room, still no wiser.

Fortunately, some of my fellow students were quite knowledgeable and were prepared to impart useful information behind the bike sheds.

Here are some of the more vital points of which you need to be aware:
1.      You cannot get pregnant if you do it standing up.
2.      You can only get pregnant if you both climax at the same time. (Tricky one, this, as it's impossible to predict).
3.      If you want to have twins you have to do it twice in the same night.

Armed with this essential information, I felt confident to launch myself into the sexual revolution.

And, guess what? To my horror, I discovered that it was exactly as that disgusting little boy had described it all those years ago. My mother and father must have done it. At least twice!

Think about it. Your own parents! It's enough to put you off sex for life!

Given my inauspicious start, it is no wonder that I choose to keep sex scenes behind closed doors.
It is perhaps because the British culture abhors any mention of sex in public that you very seldom come across explicit sex in British literature, D. H. Lawrence being the exception that proves the rule. We have become masters of the innuendo, demonstrated at its most blatant in the Carry On films.

Buy it HERE!
I am happy to hint at sex in my own books, as in, for example, this scene from Domingo's Angel:

     He looked up at her and smiled. “Angel,” he said, reaching up to caress the nape of her neck. She moaned slightly and shifted in the bed. He raised himself up on one elbow and pushed her down onto her back.
     “Domingo, she said, “there isn’t time. It is the feria today.”
     “Now, Angela,” he said sternly. “You know very well that the feria will not begin until midday. There is plenty of time.”
     The marmalade cat got down from the bed and discreetly left the room.

But I draw the line at describing exactly who did what to whom and in which orifice. I'd much rather have a nice cup of tea.

That's the British for you!

 ****

Jenny Twist's stories are guaranteed sex-free, although she is unable to vouch for those of some of the authors she shares anthologies with. She would, for instance, advise all British readers to avoid Curious Hearts at all costs, containing, as it does, one moderately smutty story and two downright filthy ones.

If you would like to know more about this remarkably smut-free author, you can visit her website at: https://sites.google.com/site/jennytwistauthor/
or follow her on:

Amazon: amazon.com/author/jennytwist
Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jenny-Twist-Author/291166404240446


45 comments:

  1. Our parent's generation have a lot to answer for LOL. :)

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  2. Thanks so much, Mysti, for putting up with my ramblings again. And I love your insert picture and caption. You are so good at finding these things!

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  3. Jack, how nice of you to visit. And how right you are about our parents' generation. We are SO much more enlightened!

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  4. Chrystalla. So glad you liked it.

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  5. I had a great lough while eating breakfast. Very funny story indeed.

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  6. So funny, Jenny - and mirrors my own 'education' including the belly button aspect of it all - and Lady Chatterley, of course! Our 'lesson' concerned rabbits, not frogs, but we were left to draw out own conclusions. Then in the final year (i.e. when we were all 17/18) we had THE lesson our predecessors had warned us about. Our spinster form tutor spent the whole 40 minutes warning us about the perils of 'erotic stimulation' while we all stuffed hankies in our mouths to stop us from laughing.

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  7. I wish I'd known all that when you still lived in England! KC

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  8. Hi Bronislava. Hope I didn't make you choke!

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  9. Our sex education in the states, especially this state, wasn't much better back in my day. The kissing myth I'd heard of, but never belly buttons. Were we allowed to say belly buttons? lol Loved the post! Enjoyed the laugh.

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    1. I'm so glad it wasn't just us! Lovely to meet you, Cassie

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  10. Dear Paula
    Isn't British education wonderful! I hope you weren't overstimulated! Your comment had me in pleats!

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  11. My darling KC, what fun we could have had if only we had known!

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  12. What the British may lack (or have lacked) in sex education they have made up for with their wonderfully dry sense of humor. Indeed, a fun piece.

    Thanks

    John M.

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    1. Hi John. I always suspected nobody understood our humour except us, but I've been proved wrong! Thank you, John

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  13. Thanks for entertainment! I love your style, Jenny.

    It's a different story on this side of the pond. I seem to recall a lot of yawning during our junior high health class where sex was explained--although a few myths were definitely debunked.

    I think the biggest value of "formal" sex education is correcting the misinformation one inevitably acquires from the ignorant masses.

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    1. Thanks for stopping in, Daniel! OMG, I remember being so embarrassed in sex ed. We were in middle school and it was during the time before puberty when we were convinced the opposite sex had cooties.

      And I also remember all the parents who vehemently protested having any sex ed in schools, convinced it would lead us all to becoming teen parents. If anything, it did the opposite--at least at the time :)

      Mysti

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    2. Hi Daniel. So they actually told you the truth, did they? Did it make any difference in the teen parent rates? I think in England proper sex education probably reduced it. At least they know something about contraception now. But I'm fascinated that your class thought it was boring!
      What's a cootie, Mysti?

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  14. LOL, Jenny, I'm still laughing and shaking my head. I don't think I can type more at this stage, must wipe tears. LOL

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    1. It's a great pleasure to me to make you laugh, Su. You have been so supportive. Love you lots

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  15. Ah, D.H.Lawrence; he was partly responsible for my sister and I thinking our parents had a porn collection. Ken Russell was the other culprit. Turning on the video one afternoon and watching naked men wrestle in front of the fire - we were horrified!
    Whilst I mention people's 'rude parts' in my writing, I too leave sex unwritten - which is all the better as it's non-fiction.

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    1. I loved the bits about the rude parts, especially the last chicken in Sainsbury's. The image still haunts me. (Anyone who hasn't read Deborah's book is missing out on some vital sex education: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/city-chronicles-a-tale-of-nine-cities/18940992?productTrackingContext=search_results/search_shelf/center/1)- my God, that's some link!

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  16. Great blog. I look after the work of the late Brit author Emy Naso, so when I saw the title I had to come and have a look

    Nicky

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    1. Hello, Nicky. How nice to meet you. Was it what you were hoping for?
      Love
      Jenny

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  17. thanks for the "education" -- I loved it!

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    1. But you must take the lessons on board. Brush your teeth after every encounter and on no account let him anywhere near your belly button!
      Nice to meet you, Tuffy.

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  18. I love these stories, you always entertain me. Very funny! x

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    1. Thanks, Eva. You always make me happy

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  19. I think Americans are more puritanical than you may imagine. I always thought the Brits were a bit more open.
    In any case, I got my sex education from the people I thought knew more than my parents--my rowdy friends.
    A very entertaining blog, Jenny.
    All the best...

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    1. I know a very puritanical American - I'm not saying who! But I don't know how typical that is. Maybe it depends whereabouts in America. So nice to talk to you, Sarah

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  20. Great post, Jenny - I remember all that very well in my Scottish schools! I too like the sex in books left tastefully to our imagination, although I did study DH Lawrence with interest.

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    1. You too, eh? I kind of suspected it would be the same in Scotland. Did you understand D H Lawrence? I think I was probably a bit slow on the uptake. No doubt caused by the initial belly button confusion thing. Love xx

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  21. Jenny, British authors aren't the only ones who skip the sex.

    I'm American, and my sex scenes are mostly behind closed doors, too. But my characters are certainly thinking about it. And I think innuendo is tons of fun. Maybe not as much fun as sex, but still plenty of fun. *g*

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    1. Hi Linda. I agree. In books it's more fun. In real life?......

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  22. Uproarious post, Mrs. T! :) I loved it!

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    1. You are one of my very favourite people. Thanks, Tara
      xxxx

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  23. Jenny, I look forward to reading Domingo's Angel. I love your topic about sex in novels. It gives me food for thought about just how sexy should a sex scene be. :) Steph

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    1. I don't think there are any hard and fast rules. It's just that I, personally, prefer it toned down. You've got it about right for me (I loved The Faberge Secret) but other people may prefer it a bit more raunchy. Love Jenny
      xx

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  24. My mom would like to read your books, as she prefers sweet romance.

    Good luck with your release.

    Janice~

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    1. Hi Janice. I'm so glad there are people out there that do like it. I'm hoping to sell some copies! Love to your mom. xxx

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  25. Growing up I was the only girl with brothers in conservative Massachusetts and looking back I was a handful! As a teenager my parents kept me in a turret like Rapunzel watching my every move. I tell my friend's teenagers now, use protection, they always laugh and their parents
    rolls their eyes, but noone told me ANYTHING!

    Thanks, Jenny. What a fun post. Happy Sunday all!

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    1. How times have changed! I told my boys to be sure they had their Mates with them when they went out on a date and they rolled their eyes and said, "Mum, honestly!"
      I'm so glad this generation has a better idea of what they're doing!
      Love
      Jenny
      xx

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  26. I have to admit to the queasiness of learning that my parents could possibly be doing "that!" when I got my first inclination of "the birds & the bees". You are right, should have turned us off right away!!! Then we grow up and learn all about the good parts.

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  27. When I realised, I assumed they must have done it twice, but obviously couldn't be doing it any more, not at their age. (They must have been all of 35!).

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  28. Very cute!

    I remember back in freshman year in high school when the nun teaching sex education asked the class where the umbilical cord went after birth. No one had a clue.

    Finally, one courageous boy raised his hand and said, "I believe that it works like a fishing pole. The thing shoots out at birth and then gets reeled back inside where it is stored until it is needed for the next birth.

    Lol. I think he eventually became an accountant.

    Great Post!

    Laurel W.

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