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Stats & Data

October 14, 2010

Smart, sassy and strangely seductive - it's relationship advice for the love challenged.

Amanda Fox is a writer, satirist, cat and people wrangler, and all around smart person. Sometimes, she gives advice about sex and relationships - because she's had that and been in one for a very long time. When she does, she calls herself Fern. 

Dear Fern,

I’m a happily married woman who has been with the same man for more than a decade.  The thing is, over the past couple of years, I’ve found myself becoming more and more interested in women, and I’m not talking about wondering where they got their hair done or where they bought their shoes.  I’ve never done anything sexually, but I think I might like to try it.   I love my husband very much and I would never want to hurt him, thus I am feeling guilty about my desires.  What should I do?


Curious about Crossing the Border

Dear Curious,

“Guilty” is for axe-murderers and pedophiles.  Besides, you haven’t even done anything yet, so relax.  As for your burgeoning desires, it wouldn’t matter who or what you wanted to do something with – woman, man, clown, judge, dog, or horse – assuming you got married under conventional pretenses AND assuming you don’t want to live a life based on lies, then exploring your sexuality outside of being with your husband is an issue you need to address first. 

You do realize however that it IS possible to incorporate fantasies of this nature into your marriage without actually sleeping with another person?  Throw a DVD in the machine and let the fun begin.  Geez, there are only about a billion movies out there with woman-on-woman action – say, “Lesbian Love” or “My Lesbian Babes”.

Now, if the illusory act doesn’t do it for you and you absolutely MUST tame a tiger, then you’re just going to have to talk it over with your hubby.  Somehow though, I don’t think he’s going to mind.

In fact, I imagine the conversation going something like this –


“Yes, Sweetcakes.  What is it?”

“I think I’d like to try getting it on with another woman.”

“You mean sex?”

“Yes, sex.”


“Would you mind?”

“Can I watch?”

“I don’t see why not.”

“Great.  When do we get started?”

Now, if it were another man you were interested in sleeping with, well that would be a whole different ballgame.   For another nine innings, read on…

Dear Fern,

Married almost fifteen years, my wife and I have always had a very open and honest relationship.  A while ago, the topic of sleeping with other people came up, and I told Maggie we should try it.  You only live once, right?  But Maggie isn’t so sure.

Even though she admits to wondering what it would be like to have sex with another man, she just can’t seem to get her head around the idea of actually doing it.  She says, “I don’t think I could ever do something like that.  What if one of us fell in love with the other person?  What if I got pregnant with another man’s baby?  What if it ruined our marriage?  What if, what if, what if…” Personally, I think she worries too much.  What’s your take?


Ready to Swing in Sacramento

Dear Ready,

What’s that you say?  You want to become a world champion skunk tamer?  What a fantastic idea.  It’s going to be so great when you win that black and white trophy, when you are standing on the podium and the whole world is cheering your name.  It’s going to be tough though.  I mean, it will likely involve you spending week after week, month after month just hanging out in the forest.   It will likely involve people angrily telling you that you stink.  It will likely involve you getting the occasional round of rabies’ shots…

All kidding aside, this is a TOUGH question.  And for tough questions, I usually look to a higher power for the answer.

First higher power:

Everyday, on my morning run, I pass this guy sitting on a bench at the park.   Usually, I simply wave a friendly hello, my iPod headphones plugged securely in my ears.  The other day however, I accidentally tripped over a branch.  My iPod went flying and I fell to the ground.  As I was rubbing my cut knee, I looked up at the guy.  “Hey,” he said. “Did you know that drinking horse semen can make you live longer?”

My first thought was, “Goddamn, I would NEVER drink something like that, what with its mutating bacteria and such.”  My second thought – “Why is this weirdo talking to me about horse semen?”  Anyway, long story short, we became friends, and yesterday, I received an invitation to his one hundred and fifth birthday party – just sayin’.

Second higher power:

Squirrels.  Have you ever watched them running around outside? They dart this way and that, stopping and starting, jumping and scurrying, driven solely by their innate desire to find nuts.  Like groundhogs, they often get run over. 

Third higher power:

Logic.  It’s like you just finished a twenty-mile run and you came into the kitchen to find a large glass of liquid sitting on the counter.  In an effort to quench your insatiable thirst, you begin downing the drink.   Part way through however, your mother walks in and says, “Hey, why are you consuming that battery acid?”  What do you do?  Do you finish it off, or do you stop and immediately call 911?

Now, if these three examples don’t prove helpful, here are a few famous quotes to further clarify things:

Choices are the hinges of destiny – Pythagoras.

A life lived in love will never be dull – Leo Buscaglia.

If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is – Author Unknown.

Everything in life has both a good side and a bad side – Heartsarentreversible via Craigslist.

When it comes to sleeping with people other than your spouse, if things are going bad, stop – Fern.

Never say never – Justin Bieber.

Finally, if you do decide to try this, could you please document your experiences and send me a copy on Blu-ray – for research purposes only, of course.

Dear Fern,

I am a proud black woman, living in a mostly white city.  The problem is, there just aren’t very many black men around for me to date.  I don’t see myself with a white guy.   I mean, how would we relate?  Thus, I fear I may end up alone.   Any advice?


Lonely in Glen Falls

Dear Lonely,

They say that when you’re starving even dog crap tastes good, so you couldn’t be THAT lonely or you’d take what you could get even if it meant dating blonde-haired, blue-eyed Graham from down the street. 

But don’t feel bad.  I completely understand where you’re coming from.  See, when I was about six years old, I had this thing for eating peanut butter and raisin sandwiches.  That’s all I ever wanted – breakfast, lunch and dinner.  In my opinion, nothing else tasted as good.  It’s funny too, now that I think of it, because my mother always indulged me.  “There are worse things she could eat,” she’d say to my father, who was more on the strict side when it came to getting your four food groups.  “Besides, I’m not arguing with her about it.”

“Good,” I thought, when I heard them talking.  “I can eat as many peanut butter and raisin sandwiches as I want and no one is ever going to stop me.”

Then there was the time in tenth grade when I only wanted to wear this one pair of Sergio Valente jeans.  They were my favorite – dark blue denim, high waist, tight fit, fancy swoosh on the back pocket.  “Aren’t they perfect?” I remember saying to my best friend Kelly.  “Why would I wear anything else when these pants make my butt look so good?”

As perfect as my jeans were – I mean they really DID hug my curves in all the right places – and as good as those peanut butter and raisin sandwiches tasted, I eventually realized that there were OTHER jeans to wear – Jordache and Chic – and OTHER sandwiches to eat – peanut butter and cheese, and peanut butter and pickle.  

Speaking of “other”, I saw a sign awhile back that read, “Everyday, do one thing that scares you.”  I believe it was in the window of a Lululemon store, and no, I’m not a fan of overpriced yoga wear, but whatever.  The point is, I wholeheartedly agreed with the message, i.e. that “scary”, “uncomfortable”, “different” and “other” can be good for you. 

Seriously, what if Ernie had never befriended Bert simply because their heads were two different shapes – Ernie’s like a football and Burt’s like a cone?   Where would we be then?  That’s right.  We’d all be screwed.  Thus, I think it’s time for you to experience someone a little different simply BECAUSE it might be challenging.

Besides, you must realize by now that what makes you “you” is you – not the guy (or girl) you are with OR the color of your skin OR the color of anybody else’s skin OR the size of your shoes OR the affability (or lack thereof) of Tom Cruise’s personality.   Yes, it is possible to be a proud black woman married to even the whitest white man.

And really, how hard could it be to relate?   Do you have trouble asking Caucasian Bob in the next cubicle at work to borrow his stapler?  Probably not.  And that’s all a relationship comes down to anyway – “Can you pass the milk please, dear?” 

The only difficulties I see arising come in the form of sex-drive discrepancies, in-laws, religious beliefs, division of household labor and child-rearing practices, and who doesn’t have problems in these areas? 

Certainly, there ARE white men out there from which to choose, and just to give you an idea, I’ve listed a few examples:

You say you want a guy who likes soulful music.  I say how about Robin Thicke? 

You say you want a hunky, hulky football player?  I say how about Brian Urlacher, John Lynch, or (double yum) Tom Brady?

You say you want a guy who can dance.  I say how about Justin Timberlake or (pushing it slightly) Channing Tatum?

You say you want a guy who can rap.  I say how about Eminem?  OK, not so much.

You say you want a guy who can rock a purple shirt.  I say how about Johnny Depp or Mark Ronson?

You say you want a guy who is “sear your pants off” sexy?  I say how about [licking lips] Mark Wahlberg?

Now, I’ve tried damn hard here Lonely, but if you still don’t find any of what I’ve suggested helpful, your do have the option of moving to another city.   I think Atlanta would probably work, though you’ll excuse me if I say that this would be taking the easy way out.