December 5, 2011

Sex: Where Survival Becomes Pleasure

So I got to thinking about sex today. That's not exactly news worthy, as any post-pubescent male will attest. However, all this thinking about motivation and survival and pleasure cast the typical carnal thoughts in a different light. It seems obvious--too obvious--to say sexual desires are fueled solely by desire.

I know this flies in the face of thousands of years of stereotypes and jokes. I'm sure any woman who reads that opening paragraph thinks I'm not thinking with any head. But I'm being as serious as I risk being here. Physical attraction is a complex experience for at least this guy, and I think it's because more than just pleasure is at stake. Sex is a game of survival as well.

Life before the internet
Consider the following. What's the physiological point of getting it on? Making babies. And where do babies get their genetic make up? Their parents. So what are babies to parents? A way to pass on their genes to a future generation. A way to survive beyond their current body's own mortality.

But there's the rub. We don't nub and divide like yeast. We're sexual, not asexual. We need someone else to contribute the other half of our future, and that person has their own life, their own personality, their own way of dealing with this world. That's when it starts to get complex. I'll be damned if the source for that other half is someone I would despise having to deal with the rest of my life. I don't care how gorgeous someone looks rolling out of bed; if they're a royal pain in the ass, I will continue to pass on the pleasure.

So from my thinking, physical attraction is a filter for whether the other half of our offspring will be capable of getting them a chance at reproduction. That in turn is a way to preserve our own genes, at the cost of dilution (tanstaafl). At the same time, personality and character compatibility are a filter to prevent us from committing a murder, and that preserves my genes in the present.

From a stranger conversation this weekend: "Having kids doesn't mean the end. But you gotta find the right mom."


  1. That second to last paragraph is spot on. There are all sorts of physical triggers that hit us on an unconscious level.

  2. People get up to so much mating that doesn't involve procreation though.

  3. Agreed. I never have understood guys who go for bimbos. Intelligence, and just an interesting personality, are an important part of attraction for me.

  4. Or we could all be like ducks and our offspring would be the results of rape 99% of the time.

  5. Get prepared to be damned, people get sick of each other after the thrill is gone

  6. So true, yeah some mindless bimbo that's a pain in my ass may look hot and all, but if one slips past the goalie, I'd be stuck with her forever in one form or another, giving me a life long pain in my ass. So forgo such acts, have to find the potential right mom first. Although there was a time I didn't think like this, got lucky in more ways then one..hahaha

  7. @Mark: Fair enough, but what has led sex to become so damn awesome? As a teacher once told me, "it's all a trick to make more butterflies."

    @Elliot: People are into all sorts of things. I've met guys who are all about high-maintenance women, even though that's far from what I'd look for. To each their own, eh?

    @R.gers: I didn't get the reference, until I caught a segment on NPR yesterday that discussed mating geese. Brutal!

    @Pat: A few shots off the crossbar will change your perspective.

  8. That's an interesting way to see things but I'm sticking with men generally look for looks and women want money and power.

  9. I think R.gers is just explaining how evil ducks are. They rape a lot and even engage in homosexual rape, just like dolphins =)

  10. fap to survive... probably the next title of an x-movie

  11. Lol I'm digging the last quote xD And you're right...humans are weird in that way as opposed to all other mammals (except for dolphins which I've heard are the only other animals that fornicate for pleasure instead of basic primal needs)


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