Connect to share and comment

Love makes the world go round. 

According to the National Sleep Foundation, about one out of ten married adults -- 12 percent to be exact -- say that they typically sleep alone.

I find that number pretty high.

Although, arguably, sleeping alone is probably better for an average marriage than sleeping with people outside the marriage.


Promiscuous queens have healthier hives

About the birds and the bees. Well, mainly the bees.
Oh, ladies, you make me proud. (ChinaFotoPress/AFP/Getty Images)

Have you ever wondered where all the bee colonies have gone in the last few decades?

Apparently, bee chastity is to blame.

Scientists at Wellesley College in Massachusetts have been trying to get to the bottom of the recent dramatic bee colony losses.

Bee numbers have been declining by at least 30 percent every year, according to the US Department of Agriculture, due to the mysterious Colony Collapse Disorder.

The researchers have come to a fascinating conclusion, Discovery News reports

When you are a queen, you are best off being promiscuous.

Here's why:

When queens mate with multiple males their hives end up with greater genetic diversity and more robust communities of symbiotic bacteria living in the bee's guts.

Heather Mattila, an ecologist at Wellesley College, found significantly more gut bacteria in bees from hives where the queens partnered with multiple males.

The scientists wrote in a press release:

We’ve never known how healthier bees are generated by genetic diversity, but this study provides strong clues…Our findings suggest that genetically diverse honey bees have the advantage of broader microbial communities, which may be key to improving colony health and nutrition -- and to understanding factors that can mitigate honey bee decline.

Researchers tested the effects of multiple mates on genetic diversity and bacteria by developing 22 experimentally controlled colonies of honey bees divided into two categories.

Twelve benefited from a queen inseminated with a mix of 15 male bee's sperm. The other 10 had a chaste queen with only one mate.

Queen honey bees only mate once in their lives, so clearly, they need to maximize the action.

Boy, and is it some action. They should start naming S&M clubs after bees.


Electro-ejaculation: the business of collecting elephant sperm

Elephants in captivity are becoming too inbred. That’s where the sperm bank of wild elephant semen comes in.
Elephants in captivity are becoming too inbred. Researchers hope insemination with frozen wild elephant sperm solves the problem. Here, a keeper cares for the sensitive skin of one-year old baby elephant Dinkar at the zoo in Hanover, central Germany, on January 31, 2012. (JOCHEN LUEBKE/AFP/Getty Images)

Just when you thought masturbating over a JC Penney underwear catalog in an IVF clinic was an unfortunate way to breed, think about what poor elephants must go through these days.

It’s called electro-ejaculation.

It works the way it sounds.

A probe is inserted about three or four centimeters into the lower intestine, near the gonadal nerve center.

This is then stimulated with a 5 to 15 volt charge that causes a contraction of the entire reproductive tract, which leads to the sperm being forced out.

According to Thomas Hildebrandt of Berlin’s Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, this is an established medical method for paraplegic men that's been used for 25 or 30 years.

He now performs the procedure on wild elephants.


Because elephants in captivity are getting too inbred, which is why every couple of years Dr. Hildebrandt takes off for South Africa searching for potentially fertile wild elephant bulls, The Local reports.

So far, it sounds like a fairly fun job.

But here is where things get a bit messy.

Once a fertile elephant is identified, Hildebrandt shoots it with a dart.

The powerful anesthetic in the dart triggers a muscle contraction that causes the elephant’s 1.5 meter (five foot) long penis to retract into its cavity and, apparently, it takes some teasing out.

Hildebrandt explains to The Local this way:

The problem is, in order to extract the sperm hygienically, we have to get the tip out and clean it.  

How they get the tip out, the report doesn't say and, frankly, we probably don‘t want to know.

Once they get it out and extract the semen, they immediately freeze it, and later thaw it and test for various diseases.

So far, no elephant cow has yet been successfully inseminated with sperm that has previously been frozen.

But they are working on it.

It’s not exactly a cheap way to breed.


Q&A quickie: How are American "sugar daddies" different from the rest of them?

Meet Helen Croydon, author of Sugar Daddy Diaries: When a Fantasy Became an Obsession
"Women who get into this for money are doomed for failure," says Helen Croydon, author, journalist and broadcaster about dating sugar daddies. (Helen Croydon's archive/AFP/Getty Images)

Frustrated with her stalled career as a broadcast journalist in London and uninspired by naive and needy guys her own age, Helen Croydon joins a website to seek an older man.

She only expects it to be a few fun dates in some fancy bars, but finds herself propelled into a world of Prada shopping trips, fine dining, first-class travel and fascinating, powerful men.

But underneath the glamor, Helen discovers a secret world of men who are prepared to pay for girlfriends – men so busy they consider cash and gifts a surer way of maintaining a relationship than emotional investment.

Helen Croydon’s confessional memoir, Sugar Daddy Diaries: When a Fantasy Became an Obsession (Mainstream, 2011) charts Helen’s journey as she set out to explore her penchant for older men.

So where has it taken her?

I spoke with her recently to find out.

Here's an edited version of our interview:

GlobalPost: When did you develop your penchant for older men?

Helen: I have always had an affinity for older men. I was always quite embarrassed about it, actually. My friends were into guys that looked like they’d stepped out of a boy band and I seemed to be the odd one out. In university, I was a bit of a prude when it came to sex. But when I was 29 and just came out of a stifling relationship, something changed. I felt like I discovered my sex drive. I wanted to experiment, I wanted the thrill of dating, the dinners, romance…

And 30-year-old men couldn’t keep up?

Younger men bored me. I had a huge crush on my older boss at work and that ignited the fantasy to meet somebody older, sophisticated – I imagined sipping a martini in a fancy bar over intelligent conversation. But working in the media with mostly young people, I never had access to these men, so I joined For three years, I was like a kid in a candy store. Men who were interesting and they didn’t try to tie me down. I never knew this whole ‘culture of allowances’ even existed. I never imagined men paid women for something that I was happy do for free.

You wrote a book about your adventures with sugar daddies, using your real name. How has that changed your life?

I was bracing myself for all kinds of reactions. I kept my sugar daddy dating quite secret before and it was a big decision to use my own name. But I felt comfortable enough that my story went deeper than anecdotal dating stories to use my real name and the response was surprisingly positive. Men don’t view me any differently than before. Friends don’t. Perhaps my mum and sister feel strange about it. They just avoid talking about it.

You are now 34. In the US, sugar daddy dating websites have become popular for much younger women. Some female college students use the “allowances” from sugar daddies to pay for college. How do you feel about that?

I wouldn’t recommend it. Not so much because of their ages, but because the motivation should never be “you want to pay for college.” Yes, I accepted material gifts, too, but there were a lot of steps that led me there. I was doing it primarily for the thrill of adventure and to meet somebody interesting. The money was a side effect. Women who get into this for money are doomed for failure.

You are British, but you had a chance to meet a lot of different nationalities of men in London. What did you think about the American sugar daddies? 


'Tofu is gay meat' slogan causes outrage in Germany

It was designed as an advert for the Maredo Steakhouse. It even won a prize. But…
T-bone steak, on the other hand, is totally heterosexual meat. (JUNG YEON-JE/AFP/Getty Images)

A picture of a steak branded with the slogan “Tofu is gay meat" was never used.

But it still created an outrage.

The advertising campaign was developed for the Maredo Steakhouse chain by writers at German ad house Scholz & Friends – but despite winning a prize back in 2009 it was considered so offensive it was never used, writes The Local

Now, almost three years later, someone dug it up from the archives of the Art Directors Club website and passed it around various social networks, where it was met with outrage and passed on, acquiring the Twitter hashtag tofuschwuchtel or “fag tofu.”

Maredo was forced to launch a damage limitation operation and issued a statement distancing itself from the campaign, stressing that Scholz & Friends had approached them asking to use the idea of advertising for a steakhouse in a competition.

Maredo executives had never even seen the images that resulted, the firm said. 

A spokesman for Scholz & Friends told Der Spiegel that the firm apologized and was doing what it could to remove the image from the internet. 

Referring to the image, the agency said, “We would not do that today, and regret that the feelings of homosexual people were hurt.”

There is also a second slogan in the campaign, also shown branded onto a steak: “If one should not eat animals, why are they made of meat?”


Wanderlust Daily Trifle: Axillism

Learn something new.

Axillism, also know as armpit fetishism, refers to the use of the armpit for sex. Yes, that means that an axillist would be sexually attracted to a person's armpit.


Chinese virginity promoter seeking a husband online

There's a catch. No sex before, or after, marriage. Good luck with that.

She has gotten tens of thousands of hits on her online ad for a husband.

But so far, no real takers.

I wonder why.

It’s probably not the commitment to pre-marital virginity that scared most potential candidates off.

It’s her commitment to post-marital virginity.

Tu Shiyou, 38, who runs Preserve Virginity, a website dedicated to promoting virginity before marriage, said she is running out of time to find a husband. 

So she turned to the internet to find one, People Daily reports.

She posted the following list of requirements for a husband, among others:

--Priority to a Party member or civil servant

--No premarital sex

--No sex life in the first three years of marriage (This one is particularly interesting. In my neck of the woods, people usually only have sex in the first three years of marriage).

My question is, does this potential husband need to be alive?


Since it is officially springtime now, here is a spring-related quote by Julian Barnes:

People in love, it is well known, suffer extreme conceptual delusions, the most common of these being that other people find your condition as thrilling and eye-watering as you do yourselves.


Slut and Traitor. Otherwise known as Osama’s widows

One of Osama Bin Laden's wives reportedly sparked a vicious catfight with his youngest wife after calling her a slut.
(MBC/AFP/Getty Images)
We have, it appears, officially entered an era where the s-word has become completely mainstream.

Not sure where the "eight-inch standard" came from, but the average size of a U.S. male penis currently stands at 5.35 inches, according to the International Journal of Impotence Research and 5.08 inches according to the The Journal of Urology.

Actually, I know where the "eight-inch standard" came from.