As promised last week, here's a second batch of letters that found their way into the mailbag of Tony LaFemina, Orlando Weekly's unlicensed but enthusiastic teen-sex counselor.
Dear Uncle Tony:
I don't know if other guys have this problem, but every time I go to the store to buy condoms, I get mortified and chicken out. Something about the experience has me too petrified to complete a single purchase. I don't want to have unprotected sex, so I know the only solution is for me to get over my phobia. What do you suggest?
You're not alone, my young friend. Even the biggest of our world's big swingin' dicks has been known to shrivel up when it comes time to hand over a cache of lambskins to some dried-up sourpuss of a retiree in a hairnet. But I think the real intimidation doesn't start at the register; it starts with the condom boxes themselves. Ever take a good look at them? It's all pictures of incredibly hot chicks with enormous mounds and eyes that demand, "Satisfy me now." You know that nobody you're going to be stuffing with those rubbers is going to look anything like that. So you put the box back in shame and leave empty-handed.
If the folks in the latex business really wanted to move some units, they'd slap on a picture of some butt-ugly heifer who's Wesson-oiled herself into a catsuit and has a mashed-down Kool dangling from her canker-ridden lips. More likely than not, she's who you're going to end up in the sack with. And that's why you need protection. Every time you pick up a packet of rubbers, you should be thinking, "Do I want to share my precious DNA with that?" Like a buddy of mine says, "The company slogan ought to be 'Trojan. Because you don't even want your friends to know she exists.'"
Dear Uncle Tony:
I'm a female high school junior who's starting to think about birth control for the first time. After weighing all my options, I've decided to go with the rhythm method. But I'm not sure how to figure out which days are the ones when it's OK for me to have sex. Can you help?
Rhythm and Flow
You came to the right place, sweetheart. Charting your monthly fertility period is so easy a kid could do it.
First, figure out how long your menstrual cycle lasted in each month of last year. Find the shortest cycle and subtract 18 from the total number of days. Then count ahead that many days from the day your current cycle started. On that day, you're just starting to be fertile, so stop having sex. Now subtract 11 days from your longest cycle of last year. Count forward that many days from the first day of your current cycle. That's the day your fertility period ends; a day later, you can go back to having sex. Finally, refer back to your longest cycle of last year and count forward that many days from the start of your latest cycle.
Now start praying like hell.
Dear Uncle Tony:
I'm a girl who just turned 17, and my life is already a total mess. My biological father is an alcoholic and drug addict who sexually abused me from the time I was seven. When I was 13, I gave birth to a mongoloid baby because my mother wouldn't let me have an abortion; instead, she beat me black and blue for being a "slut."
Finally, the state got wise, took me out of that awful house and put me in a foster home. But my new mom and dad were Internet pornographers who forced me to perform live sex acts with other girls in streaming video.
On my 16th birthday, I ran away. Since I didn't have any money or relatives to stay with, I ended up hooking up with a nü-metal band. I'm traveling the country in the back of their van, turning tricks for the road crew and hiding their smack in my colon when we travel across state lines. These guys are dirty, ignorant and mean, and they make me talk like a toddler while they stand around in a circle and masturbate. If I can't get out of here soon, I'm going to kill myself. Please say something that will give me even a shred of hope.
What are you wearing?
Dear Uncle Tony:
I'm a dude out in Illinois. Me and my friends read your column last week, and we've all decided you're the shiz. When you told that chick she couldn't get pregnant if her guy shot his wad in less than seven minutes wow, that was great. Thanks for the awesome work, and keep it up! (Heh heh. Thought you'd like that.)
Tony in Training
Thank you, little paisan, from the bottom of my heart. It's responses like yours that are going to keep me going while we journey together through this grand experiment in mutual edification, or some shit.
You know, it's not always easy being your Uncle Tony. I constantly have to go to the mat with people who don't want you kids to know the truth about a little activity I call Delivering the Honey Ham. They'd be just as happy if you stayed totally ignorant of your own bodies. That way, they could pretend none of you ever get bare-ass naked and impersonate psychomotor epileptics, like mature adults do.
How I wish the members of your generation could have grown up in my day, when there were actual street corners to learn this stuff on. But until something out there changes, I guess we're going to be seeing a lot of each other. Thanks for reading.