The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

2010.10.27 Can I use the word "bonk"?

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Today I would like to tell you about a book I just read. I write that sentence as a challenge to myself, to see if I can actually  do it.

Can I write a column about human sexuality in a family newspaper in America? Maybe in some other culture where sex is spoken of more openly, but what about here?

The name of the book is “Bonk: the Curious Coupling of Science and Sex” by Mary Roach. Roach is a very good science writer. What sets her apart from others is that she also has a great sense of humor.

She’s also willing to insert herself into her research to obtain first-hand knowledge. I won’t tell you what she convinced her husband to do inside an MRI chamber. I’ll just leave that to your imagination.

Many books begin with the heading “Forward.” Not Mary Roach’s. She starts off with “Foreplay.”

Roach explains that she came across a study while hanging out in a medical school library that opened her eyes to sex research. Before that moment, it never occurred to her that human sexual response—like sleep or digestion or any other bodily function—had been so thoroughly studied in the laboratory.

Then she thought about the difficulties of that research: the raised eyebrows, the suspicious wives, the difficulty in obtaining funding.

So what do I want to tell you about this book? Not much. I want you to go to the library yourself and ask to borrow by interloan a book about sex and science. Some of you will be pleased that you did; others will be shocked or disgusted or embarrassed.

Overall, it’s just amazing to learn what’s been studied over the last hundred years or so. Probably the bulk of the research took place since the 1940s (Alfred Kinsey, Masters and Johnson), but there are surprises from earlier decades.

Before humans were studied, other mammals found themselves before the prying eyes of scientists. Much of what was understood—incorrectly, it turns out—came from transferring knowledge gained by watching monkeys, mice and even porcupines.

Roach takes readers to a pig farm in Denmark where research continues on how to produce the most piglets via artificial insemination.

If a sow is stimulated during the process, a six percent increase in fertility is realized. There are five steps to the process, starting with boar slobber. There used to be a sixth step, when the farm worker lay on the sow’s back and.…

I’m going too far here. Let’s change the topic to rats. Dr. Ahmed Shafik of Cairo dressed 75 lab rats in polyester pants for a year. He was interested in the effect of polyester on bonking and learned that those dressed in polyester bonked less frequently. Roach wonders if it was just harder for them to get dates.

There’s so much in this book that I can’t discuss, but I will say this: in a study of odors that women found stimulating, at the top of the list was a mixture of cucumber and Good ‘n’ Plenty candy.

Roach closes the book with a little information about amazing bonking. When she started writing, she had a “naïve fantasy” that she would find a lab somewhere in the world that was working on finding the secret to the greatest of bonk.

With time running short before publishing her book, Roach finally found that lab. It was described in a book written in 1979 by the famous Masters and Johnson team.

There was the usual display of tables and graphs, along with comparisons of “functional efficiency” and “failure incidence,” but this time the researchers stepped aside from the standard science and looked at the quality of the act.

Oh, I didn’t mention the name of the book: “Homosexuality in Perspective.” It was the committed gay and lesbian couples who, shall we say, were really going bonkers.

Why? Simply put, they took their time.

Roach gives her appreciation to all the researchers who over many decades have pursued an undertaking that has been unappreciated, difficult and heavily criticized. But overall, it’s taken us to a happier place, she said, and in her typically humorous way, she closed the book by saying, “Hats and pants off to you all.”

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