By Sally Schloss
W.C. Fields once famously said, “I never drink
water, fish f**k in it.”
Truer words were never spoken. Think about it. There you are sitting in your favorite restaurant remembering the amorous night you spent with your sweetie, or you’re getting your haircut and gossiping about someone else’s sex life—when the imaginary camera in this fantasy, pulls back and zooms out to take in the street, the neighborhood, the city, the country and finally, the planet. But instead of this visual ending with the familiar space shot of our green and blue earth we see, in a God-like way, our globe teeming with life. We see crickets and swallows, dolphins and giraffes, bumblebees and bed bugs, pussycats and crocodiles (to name but a few)—all having sex. The sound track to this sweeping panorama is a fantastic din, a crescendo of mating noises. If we were to add humans into the mix and were able to do a statistical analysis of all sexual activity occurring within any given minute, we might be able to say with confidence that the number of acts would be in the bijillions. (Bijillion sounds like a lot and since there is no actual statistic that I’m aware of that provides this number, I thought it was as good a mathematical expression as any).
What we do know is that scientists estimate that there are 5 to 100 million species on the planet and they have only identified 2 million of them. Or, another way of putting it is we have only become acquainted with about 10% of the creatures we share the planet with. Who can even guess how many members there are within a species? We also know that as of February 2009, the world's population was estimated to be about 6.76 billion and it’s predicted that by 2040 the world’s population will reach 9 billion. Yowser. That’s a lot of sex.
If we are the only planet in the universe that has produced life, then I think we can safely say that we are also the sexpots of the universe.
Or as Mae West would put it—“It's
not the men in my life that count, it's the life in my men.” I think this aptly
sums up what all females feel about all males, whatever the species. However,
for most creatures I would venture to say, that “life in my men”
translates into the life giving, procreational stuff, since the point of
all this coupling-up is to create ‘little me’s.”
As if realizing what a heaving, sexual, ball this is we live on weren’t interesting enough, discovering the demented mating strategies nature has evolved for some species will boggle your mind. Read about it in my next column Deadly Animal Sex.