On D. Wade, Gabby Union, And Making Sense Of Non-Break “Breaks” And Condomlessness


(Today, Maya Francis makes her VSB debut with a piece that talks about exactly what the title says it would)

I’m going to keep it real with you all and say that there is a very, very small handful of celebrities whose happiness and success I’m actively rooting for. Among them, Janet Jackson and her gotdamnit-he’s-fine-billionaire-husband, Kerry Washington (and Nnamdi by association), Mariah and Nick, Idris and his bowtie.

I really don’t care anything about Dwyane Wade, his divorce troubles, or Gabby Union. I have opinions, and my opinions have skeletons, but I am not that invested.

But, when every single person in the whole entire world spent a week writing status after email after tweet after blog after thinkpiece deconstructing their relationship and our reactions to their relationship from every conceivable angle, I had two choices. Continue not really caring, or trick myself into believing that they’re not celebrities, and offer my opinion then.

I chose the latter.

And since I chose the latter, and chose to re-imagine new identities for Dwyane Wade (Carpenter. Yes, like Jesus.) and Gabrielle Union (Some chick working at Verizon), I have no qualms about saying two things:

1. There’s no such thing as a “break”

There is together. And not together. There is, “I’m need a couple days to avoid possibly murdering you,” and letting all calls go to voicemail forever. Sure, you might need some days to air yourselves out and regroup, but no part of that should include the next man/chick. When your “break” from me includes the addition of someone else, we’re using fuzzy math.

But, I’m aware some of you slept through math. And slept with your math teachers. So, for the Valtrex-sniffing portion of the population who do use sex with other people to get closer to their partners, there’s something else in this that doesn’t fit quite right.

2. Where the f*ck were the condoms?

I know this is a rhetorical question. At this point at least. Still, the whole condomless break sex thing reminds me of a conversation I had with a friend of mine some time ago. Apparently, men don’t just randomly stop using condoms. There’s no man out there who is a serial condom user and decides on one special night not to use one. Men who don’t use condoms, he says, always choose not to use them. Since those last three sentences scared the f*ck out of me, I won’t even attempt to address them. Just wanted to put them there so they’d scare you too.

Anyway, condoms are $12 a box. You get one condom per dollar. That’s less than an Egg McMuffin. Hell, you could get them free from a multitude of places. I mean, they’ll be Durex or Avirex or whatever other off-brand condoms they give out at free clinics, but still. That’s better than nothing. So what never seems to curl all the way over for me in these situations is the conception of #BreakBabies who are living proof of the lack of foresight, or consideration, held for the health of one’s partner whilst sexing someone else… to get closer…to the partner.

One of my personal rules in life is “never make a mistake you can’t fix.” This is why I’m not a Delta. The problem with irresponsible sex – and I’m calling it “irresponsible” in this case because any way this is spun, I think we can agree that it was not the intention to make another baby – is that it’s a shared mistake that can have detrimental, unfixable consequences for individuals who haven’t made any personal decisions for themselves. Wade, and others like him, is lucky that the conversation is just about a baby. And whether you agree with Gabby’s choice or not, let’s just be glad she still had an opportunity to make one.

You can follow Maya @MF_Greatest. And, if you don’t do that, she will follow you. Like, in real life. She will literally follow you to your house. 

The Perfection of The Pull Out Method

Proceed with caution

Proceed with caution. And by “proceed with caution” I mean “don’t even look at it if you don’t know what the hell you’re doing.”

***My latest at Madame Noire induced quite a few insults, admonishments, prayers, and even death threats. Naturally, I thought it would be a great idea to post it here today***

I’ve always been a fan of muscle cars, and after Dodge rolled out a redesigned version of the iconic Charger in 2011—and after a very influential midnight viewing of Fast Five—I decided to buy one.

In the two years since, I have no complaints. It took a little while to get used to it, but I’ve happily embraced the full doucheness of using all 350 of the horses in my engine to speed to Trader Joe’s. Perhaps no one in the entire city has more fun at traffic lights than I do.

Actually, I misspoke. I do have one minor complaint. I have to take it to the dealership to get tuned up quite often. The last time occurred a little over a month ago. I think I needed new shocks or something, I don’t even remember.

What I do remember, though, is that while I was in the garage, waiting for my car, I heard something that sounded like a full locomotive revving up 20 feet away from me. I turned around to find the source of that noise. Staring at me was a Dodge Viper. A $120,000, 700hp Dodge Viper. Damn.

One of the mechanics saw me admiring it, and asked if I wanted to test drive. It apparently was brand new, and was in the garage to get a couple tune ups before going on the dealer floor. As tempting as it was, I had to decline.

Now, you’re probably wondering why I’d start a piece about the pull-out method with three paragraphs worth of words about horsepower, engines, and a bunch of other shit I’m sure you’re not particularly interested in reading about. Stay with me, though. There is a method to my madness.

As the title suggests, I am a huge proponent of coitus interruptus—aka “the pull-out method.” When done properly, it has been scientifically proven to be just as effective as condoms in preventing pregnancy. (Seriously, look it up.) All of the stuff you learned in sex ed about how ineffective it is was, if not completely false, intentionally misleading. It is, for people who wish to have unprotected sex and not have to worry about pregnancy, literally the best of both worlds. And, while birth control pills, patches, and injections can have side effects (and can be quite expensive) pulling out is easy and free!

That said, I do understand why singing its praises in public remains taboo. It doesn’t prevent STD transmission. And, well, it leaves a bit too much up to chance. All a guy has to do is pull out a half second too late and, well, it’s splash time.

Also, I understand why teachers and parents tell young adults it doesn’t, because it’s not something you should even attempt to do unless you’re a grown up who…

1. Knows exactly what they’re doing in the sack
2. Is in a monogamous relationship
3. Has taken every test and every other safety precaution

…which brings us back to the car point.

A super powerful (and super expensive) car like a Viper is not supposed to be driven by an inexperienced driver. You need to have years of experience driving a stick and dealing with powerful cars before you even think about getting behind the wheel of something like that. And, while I do have experience with cars with big engines, I declined driving it because I’m not that comfortable driving a stick, and knew better than to take something like that on the road while relatively inexperienced.

So, would I recommend it to someone? Definitely! It’s a great freaking car. One of the best you can possibly buy. You’d be hard pressed to beat that driving experience.But…only if you know exactly what the f*ck you are doing.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

Signs That God Has a Sense of Humor

And if you don’t believe in God, then feel free to substitute God for Allah, Kool-Aid, Jetskis, or whoever you pray to when times are tough. Should the case be that you don’t pray or send a shoutout up to anybody then, well, just pretend the title of this post is, “Yo, That’s Crazy, Yo.”

So the person up above (unisex deism, FTW!) clearly has a sense of humor. I feel like most people have had moments where something happens and the only reason such a thing would occur is because your God or my God was clearly bored or blinked and shenanigans ensued. Hell, I pretty much say that on a daily basis lately.

Question, is it sacrilegious or at the very least in bad taste to put “hell” at the beginning of a statement when the preceeding statement specifically recognized a higher, assumed benevolent and merciful, being? These things keep me up at night.

So since the statement is so popular and the grass so green, I figured I’d share with you all few examples of what I really mean. #BARS #WHAT #GETLIKEME #SWAGMEOUT

1. Birth control making women sick

Flow with me. We’re all grown here so most of us know a lot of women taking birth control. One thing you learn about birth control as a man is that some pills make women sick. Others don’t. Fellas, next time a woman rejects you, don’t take it personal, their own bodies reject things they put in them…which…is not what she said, but could be if you squinted? Maybe? Anyway, say you’re a woman (pretend) and you forget to take your pill one day. So you double up the next day [Editor's note: I have no idea if this makes any sense. - PJ] And let’s say that you become immediately nauseous. At like 9am. Are you nauseous because of the pill you just took? Or did the pill never take and #wallahmagic you’re with child. Only a humor-loving God would make a pregnancy indicator part of the anti-pregnancy process. That Allah, what a card. Don’t be dating a chick who always jumps the gun. Be up at 11pm and get that late text. #PUN (stolen from Lil Wayne. Attribution Squad).

2. Women being allergic to Latex

This one is kind of the gift that keeps on giving. Except the exact opposite. I need to explain how this even came to pass. On this blog and in various conversations I’ve had in real life with friends, etc, I’ve been amazed at how many women have stated they’re allergic to latex. ESPECIALLY considering (after some quick research) that a solid 95 percent of all sold condoms are latex. After a conversation with a friend last week, I was like, “man, this really is more prevalent than I thought…what the hell are the non-rawdog options?” Turns out, you’re left with lambskin (which is something that I’ve heard about but never even seen) which ONLY protects against pregnancy – not STDs – and/or non-latex, something I didn’t even realize existed. I’m not even quite sure what that means. Is it just rubber? Is it made of fairy glitter? Lady bug wings? To complete the murder, according to Amazon.com, everything but latex is super duper expensive. Seriously, peep the price points for lambskin. It’s like $45 for a box of 12.

The point here is this: God clearly enjoys human fallibility and potential bad decision making. I can totally see a couple learning about the allergy, deciding to try the other options, finding out hoe expensive they are, rationalizing (“well, you are on the pill right? And we both got tested? It’s not like we’re going anywhere…”) then rawdogging it til the cows come home. Only a deity with a sense of humor make a person allergic to the most common form of prevention of things that might kill you.


3. Come to think of it…allergies to grass, air, sun,

While none of those allergies are very funny at their worst, there has to be some kind of sick joke to make somebody allergic to grass, right? Short of being from the polar caps, Mongolia, or the some grassless place, most people are going to encounter grass. So this isn’t funny so don’t you dare laugh, but I’m pretty sure God did that for his own sh*ts and giggles. Which, again, might be sacrilege.

I don’t know, I really wrote this whole thing to talk about the first two because they just seem unusually cruel. And remarkably ironic and hilarious if you set the world in motion.

Again, that God, what a card.

What are signs you’ve seen that show you that God has a sense of humor?


It Turns Out Safe Sex Is Just As Enjoyable As Unsafe Sex!

I love that there’s an article or study done for nearly everything under the sun. You might have to search long and hard, but I’d bet all the money in Prince Harry’s pocket that if you wanted to know the average size of the middle toe on Botswana fisherman who only work on Tuesdays in July, there’s some study out there for it. Granted, that’s pretty obscure.

Well, along the lines of studies that focus on things people ACTUALLY want to know, a professor at the University of Indiana-Bloomington, determined what might possibly be the most “duh” statement on the planet: men and women enjoy sex just as much with condoms as they do without condoms.

The jury’s out on the study that asks about how it feels, which is where most of the debate actually happens.

Researchers reviewing an online questionnaire of the sex habits of men and women from 18-59, found participants consistently rated safe sex as ‘highly arousing and pleasurable’ – the same score as unprotected sex.

Dr Debby Herbenick, from the School of Public Health-Bloomington, Indiana University, who led the study said: ‘This may be because men are more likely than women to purchase condoms and to apply condoms.

‘However, it’s important for more women to become familiar with the condoms they use with their partner so that they can make choices that enhance the safety and pleasure of their sexual experiences.’

While this should be both promising and exciting information to those who work in the latex and condom industry as well as safe sex advocates, I seriously doubt a study like this is going to make anybody go out and grab a jimmy that wasn’t already going to use one.

Here’s why, we already know that sex can be just as enjoyable with a condom as it can be without one. Without can feel better, however, I’m sure all of us have used some condoms that were so thin that we questioned whether or not the condom had come off (sometimes it had, sometimes it was there doing its duty). I remember when the Durex Sheikh condoms dropped, those things scared the bejesus out of me because they never felt like they were on. Whereas Lifestyle condoms on the other hand well, let’s just say their motto should have been Lifestyles “Just say yes to pregnancy!”. Not a fan. Trojans have been consistently at the top of the game forever and they have some ultra thin ultra sensitive brands that give you that “raw” feeling as well.

There’s no substitute for peace-of-mind. And those individuals who need that are always going to use condoms. Then there’s the contingent who has already eschewed condoms in their relationships and shot of sexing some new thing for the first time, they’re not going back to condoms either. This study is great fodder but it’s also common sense and won’t tilt the tide in one way or another.

But I’m glat it exists for the younger kids to be used in sex education so that you can convince them that it will feel just as good and be safer. So maybe that could be one positive, if it helps keep a jimi hat on the wang of some petulantly curious 16-year-old then maybe its all worth it.

Then again, you don’t even need a study for that.

Read more at Guyspeak.com

Why Being A Single Man Is Kind Of Overrated


Pic only chosen because I thought it was funny that this image was the first thing to pop up when googling "single black man"

While most will probably remember 2012 as the “Year Of The YOLO” (and by “most” I mean “like seven people“), it holds special significance for me because it’ll likely be the first year since 2002 where I spent the entire year single. I haven’t completed a full calender year yet — May will make it seven months since the former Lady Champ and I decided to go our separate ways — but because I seem to enjoy doing random anthropological experiments on myself for absolutely no reason (and because I’m an INTJ and INTJs apparently suck at relationships), I’m confident that I’ll make it to 2013 without having to change my Facebook relationship status again.

Anyway, if I could sum up my seven months of singledom in one word, it would most likely be “interesting.” I’ve met some “interesting” people, done some “interesting” things, made some “interesting” decisions, and, most importantly, thought some “interesting” thoughts. The most “interesting” of these “interesting” thoughts? Being a single man is kind of overrated.

Now, as I stated on the day where I wrote about orgasms, “overrated” doesn’t mean “bad.” In fact, as the careers of Tupac and Derrick Rose continue to prove, something can be very, very good — even great — and still be overrated. I’ve enjoyed being single, and will likely continue to enjoy it. But, while it seems like many assume that being a single man (a single Black man, at that) is nothing but an utopic stream of easy popsicles, cold pancakes, and syrupy p*ssy, there are a few downsides.

1. It can be very lonely

As a person who wanted to be single, is a natural introvert, and generally enjoys doing things by himself, I’m surprised by how, for lack of a better term, “noticeable” the solitude and loneliness of singledom can be. Even when seeing multiple people and/or having tons of friends, being single means that you are…single, by yourself, and there may be times when you want to have someone around but there will be no one that you want to be around readily available to be around.

Then, to add insult to injury, if you’re an angsty motherf*cker like me, you’ll start thinking things like “Wait. I’m a single man. A single Black man. My dad named me after Dolemite. Shaka Zulu is my second cousin. People who’ve never even met me call me “Champ” for chrissakes. Why the f*ck do I feel lonely right now?” which’ll make it even worse.

2. You have to wear condoms. And, wearing condoms sucks

If you’re one of the 137 people left on Earth who always has protected sex — even if in a long-term, monogamous relationship — just skip this section and move on to #3. Also, I’ve left a plate of gotdamn sugar cookies at the end of this post as a reward for your duty. Please eat them with a gotdamn smile.

If you’re not one of these people, you should be able to relate to how frustrating it’s been to go from condom-less sex to having to worry about having gotdamn condoms all the damn time. And, even if you’re not actively having sex, “Do I have condoms?” and “Since I don’t have condoms, is there somewhere close where I can buy them?” always has to be on your mind.

Also, from a logistical perspective, they’re a hassle to put on, they smell like a pack of slutty balloons, and “sex with condoms” will always be the Mike Conley of coitus.

There is always the alternative — just don’t wear condoms while single, either — but I think one Cromartie per generation is enough.

(Btw, is it just me, or has the price of condoms spiked dramatically in the past four years? I was last single in 2008, and I don’t remember a box of condoms costing as much as it does to fill a gas tank. Does this qualify as a “first world problem?” If a Black blogger bitches about condoms in the woods, would Kanye’s missing draws make a sound?) 

As much as condoms suck, they don’t suck as much as…

3. Having to participate in the dating game

In a paradox so annoying that I almost didn’t mention it today because I plan on spending an entire day on this sole topic soon, I love meeting new, interesting women but I hate the process that usually goes along with meeting new, interesting women.

I understand (and appreciate) the purpose of the process, but knowing why it’s necessary doesn’t mean that you have to enjoy it.

4. The superficial romantic connections synonymous with singledom gets old

Ironically, the best thing about being a single man — possessing the ability to have myriad short, commitment-free relationships AT THE SAME DAMN TIME!!! — ends up being one of the worst after enough time has passed.

This actually hasn’t happened to me yet. I guess I’m still in the single honeymoon phrase. But, I’m certain it will, and the thought of this happening is already depressing me.

Actually, this entire list is getting depressing. ***Making note to self to make sure tomorrow’s post is about the playoffs or strippers or something***

5. You start to realize some, um, “unpositive” things about yourself

I’ve been in three long-term — “long term” = “monogamous relationship lasting at least a year” — relationships as an adult. Each of these relationships failed, and my wanting to be single was the main catalyst behind each of these failures. Now, because I’ve always been a guy who did all the “right on paper” relationship things — I’ve never cheated, never physically or verbally abused any girlfriends, always followed the chivalry handbooks, etc — I’ve always assumed that I’m good at being a partner. But, these last few months have made me realize that I have some real deficiencies in the relationship department — personality quirks that have subtly sabotaged each relationship I’ve been in.

I wouldn’t quite call myself a trojan horse — the sabotage isn’t intentional (at least it’s not consciously intentional) — but I’m just not very good at this relationship thing right now, and I intend to spend the rest of 2012 trying to figure out why.

That’s it for me today. Fellas — single or coupled up — how do you feel about the concept of singledom? Is it all the beer commercials make it out to be, or do you agree that it may be slightly overrated? Also, ladies, are the “single man problems” expressed today at all similar to any “single woman problems?”

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)