Guest Post: 7 Reasons Why The Brits Are Uptight About Sex
1. The Conservative Party. The Conservative party specialise in a particular duality; Tories like very much to keep things business and respectable at the front, but murky, duplicitous and even sinister at the back. When I say ‘back’, I mean of course that hidden away room in the tower out on the west wing of their country pile in the depths of Surrey where they keep the, er, apparatus. This dual existence means that, instead of embracing their sexual tastes as part of their identity as they should, they prefer to hide them away and keep them under lock and key and then present this as some sort of honest virtue. What a crock.
2. The Victorians. Perhaps the definitive age in British sexual mores, the Victorians have a lot to answer for. The Victorians had a tendency to tie up and repress the bosom of their emotions in a corset or a strait-jacket and take away its air, suffocating it, starving it. Their bedrooms cold and draughty, their beds stone slabs when compared to the kind of things on offer for bedrooms today.
Of course the figurehead for this smothering of desire was the Queen herself, all jutting chin and jowel and brimming with disdain for any show of open affection: a real ice Queen. Imagine her now, faced with the flesh-fest on Geordie Shore. She’d cancel Christmas and cut off supply routes to the north-east in an instant.
3. Female Suppression. For so long in Britain, the prevailing cultures – political, social and sexual – were patriarchal. You might well argue that this is still the case. The idea of discussing female sexual desires and needs was anathema; it was all one way stuff, if you excuse the image. That whole concept is based on male control and male control is predicated on holding stuff back in case things start slipping out of their hands. Again, you’ll have to excuse the image there. Sorry.
4. Stiff Upper Lip. Brits love to be seen as old warhorses; stoic in the face of unremitting adversity; taking every blow on the chin but never giving in, always soldiering on. The old stiff upper lip. If only they’d be a bit happier about keeping something else stiff? This piffley-idea of sanctified stoicism is laughable when you think of it. It’s like the Brits have seen Sisyphus and thought what a good idea his lot in life looked like.
5. The French. Brits are terrified of the French, how they smoulder, casually turn on and turn off their passion switches, how they can make even the most trivial of actions look effortlessly cool. More than anything else they are terrified of the French having sex. And being better at it than the Brits. The Brits think that if they pretend it (ie sex with the French) doesn’t exist, then the French cannot be better at it than us. It’s an ostrich shoving their head in the ground scenario. The French know their heads are better used elsewhere. Haw, hee, and indeed, haw.
6. Class. As a nation, the Brits are utterly obsessed with class. It defines every social occasion, every coming together on public transport, every purchase they make, every personal affect. Sex of course should and does transcend any pseudo-idea of class but the Brits being the Brits think that certain sexual habits are only to be associated with the underclass whereas everyone uses a variety of vegetables as part of their sexual role-play games don’t they? Don’t they? No? Oh.
7. Eros: not just a waiter. The name ‘Eros’ to a Brit is more likely to be associated with the waiter who brought them cheap plonk in that holiday complex down on the Costa del Torquay, not the God of Love. Cupid rhymes with stupid as they see it – the Brits will always find a way to undercut, downplay and not face up to the force of true sexual emotion when they should just let everything go, open their arms wide and embrace Eros to their hearts. Even if he is a bewhiskered, doddery old fella with breath that smells of cigarettes and dried shrimp. Especially, then.