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Is The Mobile Phone Killing Sex?

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There was a time when lovers would meet once. The man would decide to pursue a courtship and the woman would signal her openness to it. Most of their communication would occur through letters—letters filled with the most passionate expressions of tenderness, affection, and desire. They would see each other occasionally. A formal engagement would not be long in coming, and they would get married. After so much time spent apart, after so many days filled with nothing but thoughts of the other, the intensity of the sex would be life-altering.

This all gave way to a much looser and informal way of meeting people. Jazz culture changed everything. Walking into a club filled with strange women, a young man would see one in particular he fancied; he would approach her, talk to her up, and take her out. One date would lead to the next, and the sex would soon follow.

The dating life of my own youth resembles the above scenario. There was something about the atmosphere of being in a large crowded room with music pumping and drinks flowing. Back then there was nothing to do but talk to one another and dance. The women stood in groups, or sometimes even alone, waiting to be approached. There was much in the spaces between the ripe young bodies gathered in the club. There was lust, yearning, an all-consuming feeling of wanting to be noticed, to be touched, to be taken home and ravished—this held true for both men and women.

The mobile phone seems to have done away with all that. Going out nowadays presents a depressing scene. All the girls are on their cell phones—reading and sending text messages, looking at the updates on their Facebook thread, in a word, doing everything possible to take themselves mentally out of the place they are in. I sometimes wonder why people bother to go out at all if they are so unwilling to circulate and be approachable.

This goes for the men as well.

We are too busy and distracted to create an atmosphere in which the promise of intimacy and romance can thrive. You cannot lock eyes with a beguiling stranger if your head is constantly in mobile screen, you cannot look at ass, hair, lips, and tits if you are too busy on Snapchat, you cannot enjoy moments of intense attraction if you are not paying attention to who is around you.

It is no wonder that we are in so desperate need of Tinder. Given how distracted we are in public spaces—spaces filled with beautiful single women—we have no choice but to go hunting down dates on an app. But even when we’ve met the girl we are still not quite with her. We still do not want to put away the phone; neither does she.

So here is my challenge gentlemen. Spend an evening on your own or with the boys. Come to an agreement before hand to switch off your mobile phones. Go to a bar and then to your favorite nightspot. Look around, smell, see, listen, sense—take in the atmosphere around you. Flirt, touch, and make love with your eyes to a girl that takes your fancy. Do not be distracted. Put away your mobile phone for the evening. Focus on being pleasant and engaging with the person you’re with. Build up the intensity between you. I promise you it will lead to a better night of passion.

About Christopher Reid

Chris was born in Washington, D.C. and lives in Britain. He works as a blogger, essayist, and novelist. His first book, Tea with Maureen, has just been published.

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