Sex talk
Speaking of Internet Dating

Simon Sheppard, QSyndicate.com

The Internet has changed our sex lives. The modem is turning out to be the sex toy of the new millennium. Log on and find a sex partner while the Lean Cuisine is getting nuked. Fabulous!

But there are pitfalls. If it seems too easy to make a date, he probably won't show. Guys with "slave" in their screen name usually aren't. Subtract at least an inch from whatever he says.

Fortunately, there are also ways to better the odds of getting what you want - which may be love but is more probably sex.

If you want to post a message now for sex immediately you could always go to Personals. They have boards for men seeking men, women seeking women, or bisexual couples seeking same.

All of these are free and require registration, but that's only to count members and how often they visit. The actual registration does not require your real name or address, so relax.

ICQ is also an option and is international and because of geography, for chatting only. You also don't have to wait for emails or going to actual chat rooms, you can respond by clicking an icon, though you have to register first.

The rules of the road are pretty much the same regardless of where you cruise. So here are a few signposts; your mileage may vary...

It's better to be clear than coy.

Nobody who says he's "into everything" is actually into everything. If a guy's into feet, or being spit on, or he wants to tie three bottomboys together, he should say so; it increases his odds of hitting the jackpot.

Same goes for those into plain old vanilla.

And not everybody wants instant gratification, at least not always. It's frustrating to flirt ferociously for an hour, only to find out that Mr. Sex Object's still at work, going on a business trip after dinner, and anyway he and his boyfriend are monogamous. Being clear about whether you're actually looking to play, and when, is only right.

The personal profile - an option on most sites is a great tool, and like all great tools, should be handled correctly. Accuracy counts; the wannabe who advertises himself as an experienced slave might have trouble explaining to some online Master why he doesn't know what CBT stands for (that's cock-and-ball torture, by the way). And where the profile asks for "birthday," stupid-cute lines like "yes, every year" just don't cut it. Furnishing your age, flat out, ensures that guys into 20-year-olds, 40-year-olds, or 60-year-olds, will be able to find a suitable sex object.

Same with physical descriptions. If a guy just wants to cyber (for the uninitiated, that means typing dirty things back and forth online), then he can claim a huge piece of meat and watch the size queens flock to his door.

But if he's actually trying to hook up, someone's eventually bound to discover that his massive 9-incher is really an average 5-ish. Ethical cruisers measure from their pubic bones, not their buttholes, and tell the truth. There's enough cynicism in this world already.

Exchanging pictures, as fallible and misleading as they can be, is still very, very useful. Sad but true, it's not just what's inside that's important. No matter how great a man may sound, there may be no physical chemistry there. A guy should have a couple of e-mailable pics, at least one of which shows his face. And the one who suggests a picture swap should send first, or at least simultaneously. Pic-swapping games are frustrating and tacky.

Hate to say it, but horny homos have been known to lie. Before making a definite date, a phone call will go a ways toward determining sincerity (and also ensure that Tommy Trick doesn't sound like Donald Duck). There's still a chance Dream Boy will be a no-show, but also a chance he'll appear at your door - or you at his - erect, as advertised, and ready to go.

And that, after all, despite the games and software glitches, is the promise of online cruising. Ah, this Modern Age...

Simon Sheppard is the author of Kinkorama: Dispatches from the Front Lines of Perversion

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