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12.02.2008  BY EM & LO
According to new research out of Bradley University in Illinois, Brits are the most sexually liberated of all the big Western industrial nations, trouncing France, the U.S., Spain, Greece, Australia, even Italy. (The U.S. came in 6th, behind Australia but ahead of France.) So much for that stiff upper lip! The researchers asked 14,000 people in 48 countries questions about one-night-stands, total numbers of partners, and attitudes toward casual sex, in order to come up with an index measuring how sexually liberated we all are in both thought and behavior.

David Schmitt, a professor of psychology at Bradley University who oversaw the research, thinks that Britain's high marks may be due in part to the fact that it's increasingly socially acceptable for women as well as men to engage in no-strings sex. "Historically we have repressed women's short-term mating and there are all sorts of double standards out there where men's short-term mating was sort of acceptable but women's wasn't," he says. Other contributing factors, according to Schmitt, are a move toward equal pay and equal rights for women, a move away from young people saving themselves for Jesus/marriage, and, of course, a highly sexed popular culture.

11.04.2008  BY EM & LO

It's sexy. 'Nuff said.


Photo via Splash

If you care about reproductive rights and sexual freedom (and reading this site means you probably do), then there's only one choice for president tomorrow, and that's Barack Obama (okay, there's Ralph Nader too, but too much is at stake for a symbolic vote this year). If you understand that abstinence-only sex education does more harm than good, that gays are people too, that pharmacists' religious beliefs should not stand in the way of your access to birth control -- then make sure you pull the level or punch your card or fill out your ballot Democratic tomorrow. (Even Barack isn't ideal on gay marriage, but at least he's opposed to definitive constitutional amendments, whether state or federal ones, denying gays equal rights and he supports repealing the unfair and old-fashioned "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.) Being pro-choice is not just about making sure abortions stay safe, legal and rare, it's about the right to privacy; the right to family planning; the right to have access to decent, accurate, appropriate information that can save people's lives; the right to marry the person you choose -- even the right to buy and sell a sex toy and enjoy it in the privacy of your own home without it being a felony (we're talking to you, Alabama). So instead of blowing off work to read this site, blow off work to do your civic duty. If you elect Obama-Biden, we'll be here when you get back. If you elect McCain-Palin, well then, who knows how long we've got before we're shut down...

10.24.2008  BY EM & LO
Photo via

A weekly round-up of our favorite sex-related musings on the Web:
  • Violet Blue can't figure out why everyone assumes she wants to see the Sarah Palin porn-alike. She says she's afraid to check email because she doesn't want to spend the next four years scrubbing her eye sockets with Brillo pads.
  • What would Friday be without FAIL Blog? But tell us, is this Best Man Fail real or fake? And does it make us terrible people if a small part of us hopes that it's real?!

10.21.2008  BY EM & LO

Madness, sadness, and general lameless online...

10.20.2008  BY EM & LO
Video still via

We're ashamed to say it: We have been known--in the past, amongst close friends--to utter the phrase "That's so gay" when what we really meant was "That's so stupid." We figured, hey, we're constantly talking about gay rights and the importance of legalizing gay marriage, and we call out homophobia whenever we see it (even if you don't always agree with us). Plus, we love gay pride marches and Ellen. So people couldn't possibly think we meant harm by it, could they?

But what we didn't bank on with all those weak justifications is the harm we do people who don't know that we know better. And, well, we should know better. We do know better.

So we are sheepishly linking to these three excellent PSAs by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). Turns out that we're not that much more mature than 16-year-old boys with cheesy mustaches. And we are way out-matured by Hilary Duff. But it's the cashiers video that made us feel truly contrite. Perhaps, as penance, when something is stupid, we should say, "That's so Em & Lo."

No, seriously: you need to tell them.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is the official shrink handbook: it's a phonebook-style guide to every mental health diagnosis or illness out there. Or should we say "mental health illness"? Because unfortunately, the DSM has a history of being a bit behind the times--for example, "homosexuality" was listed as a mental disorder until 1974 (listen to the amazing story of how being gay was taken off the list by This American Life). And, according to the DSM, engaging in kinky sex is still a sign that one is weak in the head.

09.09.2008  BY EM & LO

A roundup of recent sex-ish news-ish stuff...
  • The Times Style magazine has a great roundup called "Dudes in Guyland" on the various books out recently about, you guessed it, men (with a special focus on that charming male credo, "bros before hos").

09.08.2008  BY EM & LO
Debbie Nigro, a blogger at divorced women's hang-out, is sick and tired of being called a cougar. It's not that she's a stranger to the appeals of the younger man--far from it, in fact--she just hates what the moniker has come to mean: "The word 'cougar' just makes it sound like older women are pouncing on innocent young men, when truthfully we are 'treating them' to the experience of wisdom and an occasional expensive dinner. Neither side in this romantic pairing initially embarks innocently and without agenda." Just look up "cougar" on to see what she means: phrases like "overly surgically altered wind tunnel victim" and "an absolute sad and bloated old horn-meister" are enough to drive any older woman to the nunnery. Or the bottle.

Oh, let's be honest here, you don't even have to venture out to You can start right here, with yours truly. We once wrote that "cougar hook-ups often make us feel kind of sad inside." And in New York magazine last year, we said that good moms are MILFs and bad moms are cougars. In other words, Demi Moore is a MILF but Dina Lohan is just a speckly old cougar, as Gawker so memorably put it. Or MILFs are sexy librarians and cougars are mutton dressed as lamb. Consider us put in our place: We are the original cougar haters, and we are sorry for it. ...

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Em & Lo, more formally known as Emma Taylor and Lorelei Sharkey, are the self-proclaimed Emily Posts of the modern bedroom.

Dr. Kate is an OB/GYN at one of the largest teaching hospitals in New York City.

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