In the midst of yet another migraine, I’m rereading Lolita and thinking about what happens when one becomes that (to Humbert Humbert, anyway) dull but desirous thing, a “handsome woman.” Bovine, large-bodied, with all the S-shapes curved and grown in. Tumescent, in fact. Off the pill, desire constitutes a persistent and prominent part of my life now. This isn’t an unwelcome development. It is, however, new. The estrogen-progesterone complex had neutralized fantasy and nuked not just the cycles of response in my organs and membranes, but also my sexual imagination.

I write to you, therefore, as a born-again sensualist who’s totally unfamiliar with the female sexual experience as narrated by various women-authored sites on the Internet. I’m thinking of Collegecallgirl, One D at a Time or even Tracie on Jezebel. These women have an impressive understanding of their own pleasure. They tend to report a kind of arousal I’m only barely acquainted with–instantly wet, eager and willing to participate in many acts I find unappealing, or better in theory than practice.

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