A lifetime ago (in the era before mobile phones), timid, virginal, judgmental me met up with a girlfriend somewhere along Avenue Montaigne in Paris one summer afternoon. As we made the rounds of the boutiques, running our fingers along 400-thread count sheets, silk twill scarves, dazzling cut crystal, and smooth calf leather, Susan, I noticed, regarded the merchandise with a stare that was more absent than concentrated. And her gait, it had to be said, was not so much leisurely as it was torpid, even lethargic, as if she had reluctantly been roused from her dreams to pursue that most banal of afternoon activities—shopping.
“What’s wrong?” I asked her when we finally sat down to tea at a café in the Place de l’Alma. “Is everything fine?”
“Ohhhhh,” she drawled, her voice thick with languor, “I just had the most amazing f*ck of my life this morning.”
Well, that certainly explained everything.
There is sex that energizes and makes you want to run the Boston Marathon after, but sometimes the best kind of the sex is the kind that really knocks you out and leaves you feeling spent, sated, and reluctant to do anything else but stay in bed and f*ck again. Which is what Susan had clearly been enjoying earlier that day before she had to drag herself across town to meet me. This was definitely one instance where the gratification afforded by retail therapy was a paltry replacement for the seismic pleasures of an orgasm (or four) rocking your world.
And what’s more, the woman could barely lift the teacup to her lips, but bloody hell, her face was f*cking glowing.
A part of me was shocked by her candor. Another part of me wanted to go on shopping. But most of me was downright envious. “I want some of that, too!” I longed to scream. Instead I sublimated my envy with a generous helping of tarte au citron, hoping its tangy sweetness would overpower those covetous pangs.
Decades later, in New York, I would be using my cellphone to sheepishly text my godparents that I wouldn’t be making brunch that day as planned, pleading an extreme case of jetlag. Then I climbed back into bed, back into the arms of the man I was involved with then, oblivious to the muted glare of the September sun seeping through the windows of his apartment 50 storeys above Lower Manhattan. Within seconds, we were at it again, for the nth time in something like 12 hours.
F*ck brunch. This was so much more satisfying. So satisfying that I not only ditched brunch, but all the New York Fashion Week shows I was supposed to attend that day, with nary a trace of regret.
In echoes of that day with Susan in Paris, I finally managed to drag myself to a very late afternoon tea with a fashion blogger friend at the Peninsula, and stared at him blankly while he raved about Prabal’s show.
“What is wrong with you?” he asked, exasperated.
“Wait,” he added. “You’re glowing! Did you have sex last night?”
Last night, last night again, this morning, this morning again. And again…
Seriously, having sex on the regular, not to mention the attendant orgasms that come with doing so, is great for the skin and a hundred times more potent than any beauty potion promising to restore, rejuvenate, and defy the onslaught of age. You just can’t bottle that glow that comes from your game being strong, endorphins on fleek, the blood running—no, sprinting through your veins—every nerve ending of your body on heightened alert.
Indeed, a Huffington Post article quotes the respected US dermatologist Dr. Amy Wechsler extolling the skin-healing benefits of sex. “When you have sex, you’re bathing the skin in anti-inflammatory molecules such as oxytocin and beta-endorphins. As we get older, we don’t heal as often as we repair. But having sex can turn the clock back on that.”
Which is why, when a relationship ends, and a former partner replaces you with another, a significant but often unacknowledged component of the sorrow/bitterness/anger/indifference/relief (tick the emotion that applies) you feel in the aftermath of a breakup is directly related to the fact that the ex has chosen henceforth to no longer seek from you his or her sexual satisfaction. He or she has willingly foregone the heat of your body, the touch of your lips and the thrust of your loins for another’s. Depending on the intensity of your sexual chemistry, that could be a more crushing loss than his or her affections.
Which is also why they say looking good is the best revenge. There’s nothing like basking in post-coital afterglow and seeing your ex, bloated, balding, and bitter. And you know, without a doubt, that you’re having better sex than he is, if he’s getting any at all.
And, trust me, he knows it.
Next to sex, that can feel pretty f*cking amazing, too.
B. Wiser is the author of Making Love in Spanish, a novel published earlier this year by Anvil Publishing and available in National Bookstore and Powerbooks, as well as online. When not assuming her Sasha Fierce alter-ego, she takes on the role of serious journalist and media consultant.
She will be speaking at the Philippine Literary Festival which takes place from Aug. 28 to 30 at the Raffles Hotel in Makati.