It doesn’t take a classics major to figure out the derivation of the word. It comes from the Greek word, Aphrodisiakos, referring to Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. Candidly, I’m not terribly sure that so-called aphrodisiacs are popular because of anything at all to do with love. More likely, we’re talking about something that “gets us in the mood…hot-to-trot…horny.” What’s fascinating is this topic cuts across every single category of age, color, IQ, race, social status or financial status there is. In short: Pretty much everyone on planet Earth is interested in Sex, more Sex and better Sex.
I’m betting five bucks now, that someone out there is scanning ahead for the sentence you think is about to come, the one that says, There’s no such thing as an aphrodisiac. That isn’t going to happen. By the way, I’m not talking about the little blue pill now. This is not an essay about a very specific chemical that was…(ready for this?) accidentally discovered by scientists looking for something else entirely… a pill to alleviate angina and hypertension. Viagra, as it turns out, wasn’t so hot at doing that, BUT….. try to imagine that historic moment when some guy with a clip-board looked down and said, …“Hey…guys!!! We might be able to use this stuff after all!” Viagra affected men’s plumbing…nothing else. Period.
In much the same way that Viagra was accidentally discovered, PT-141 was discovered when a company in New Jersey was searching for…. (I’m not making this up) a tanning enhancer! Once again, there was a historic moment. The guys being tested were getting highly aroused. Unlike Viagra, however, which just works on one’s “plumbing,” PT-141 does not pass “Go” but travels directly to the brain. Better yet…it looks like it works even more effectively on women. Maybe there is a God and maybe She’s had enough with the Viagra!
PT-141 really does do the job. This drug is in its final testing by Palatin Technologies in New Joisy… state of my birth. Viagra works strictly on the circulatory system of…well…we have to call it something. Viagra sends blood to Oscar Meyer while PT-141 goes right to your brain and actually puts you in the mood whether you’re male or female. No joking.
Nuts and Bolts…no pun intended. A comparison between PT-141 and the three PDE-5 inhibitors ( 3 versions of Viagra) :
Viagra: Forty percent of men never refill their prescriptions for Viagra. Thirty-three percent don’t receive any benefits from the PDE-5s. Because of how it works, PDE-5s also present a potential for unsafe cardio-vascular effects.
PT-141 in Men: Men experienced significant relief from Erectile Dysfunction, regardless of the severity. 50% of men experienced 50% or more relief across the board. Side effects for men were as follows: Occasional facial flushing. Occasional post nasal drip. Occasional metallic aftertaste in some men. Not to be coy, but it seems like the benefits really outweigh the drawbacks…significantly! Fingers and toes crossed that this becomes available this spring!
Viagra, a Personal Observation: Please keep in mind that I am attempting to address this subject in a manner that is neither juvenile nor tasteless. The potential is off the scale and people…men in particular, avoid this topic like the plague. Ready? Let’s get to it. Though I have never asked a doctor for a little blue pill, about two years ago, I went for my “guy exam”. My doctor is also an old friend and for most of the session we exchanged stupid jokes to make things go easier. At the end, I’d checked out okay and then he tossed me a little plastic tube with 8 or 10 of the infamous blue pills. He said, “Yeah, I know,” before I’d even had time to protest. He said, “Though you didn’t even ask for them, I have my own test going on. Just let me know what you think of ’em. They’re on the house.”
I went home, showed them to Pam and she started laughing. We’ve all heard outrageous stories which I will leave to your imagination. A week later, I called him up. “Well?” he asked. “Well…they do what they promise they’ll do but… It’s just a little weird…They had nothing at all to do with actual arousal or romance or desire…just mechanical.” I flushed the rest of them cuz it felt stupid. Frankly, I wasn’t impressed. I guess if you’re a gigolo and have to go to “work” they do that job. As far as what you’d hope they’d do… not so much. And if you check the stats, most guys don’t go back for refills.
The old-fashioned way: If you’re lucky you live to get old enough to be concerned with this sort of stuff. When I read advice columns in the New York Times or Cosmopolitan, Esquire, etc. giving advice on marriage and remaining sexually interested (interesting) I always look to the age of the writer. This week, a gal of 28 was giving advice on how to rekindle the “flame” in marriage once you’ve been married for…God, I don’t know…three years? Pamela and I chuckle at this. Show me the winners…people who are still crazy, happy, and horny after 30 years, 40, or in our case 45. Listen to those people, not the ones who still have training wheels on their marriages.
Olfactory Aphrodisiacs: Oddly, there have been extensive studies performed to isolate exactly what does…and what doesn’t serve as an aphrodisiac. You might be surprised. First off, I’m happy to say that 95% of women are NOT turned-on by guys’ cologne…particularly in the dosages most men use. Listen-up guys: Women much prefer a guy to smell clean and guy-like. It’s that simple. Wood smoke doesn’t seem to hurt, either.
Men are attracted to pheromones, though there’s a flip-side to this equation. Women in particular, seem to be able to sniff out if there’s some genetic reason why a man might be unacceptable (distantly related). They also seem to key-in to a guy’s natural smell. In my college days, I did, indeed, have several girls that seemed to like… the way I smelled right after a work-out, no Ban Roll-on, no Hai Karate.
Oh, another factoid...one which I don’t actually understand. Apparently, the smell of pumpkin pie increases men’s penal blood flow by 40%……sounds cheaper and a lot yummier than a blue pill. If you have some hot guy coming over to your house, you might try baking a pumpkin pie! In Elizabethan times, women would take slices of apple peel, rub it under their armpits and give it to their suitors. The smell lasted for days and these were termed, “love apples.”
Visual Aphrodisiacs: Men vs. Women: The old proverb goes: Men are turned-on by what they see. Women are turned on by what they hear. I believe there’s truth to that, though in light of the recent explosive block buster (of a book) 50 Shades of Grey, I’d add, women are turned on by what they read as well.
The Absolute Best Aphrodisiac on the Planet: Guaranteed! No pills, no sprays, no nothing. Just your brain. I have not spent weeks researching to see if there are any How-to Books for Men or for Women, showing them how to daydream in just the right way to get them in the mood. But from many decades of personal experience I can guarantee you 10,000 percent that it works. It’s just that no one talks about it……till now. If you’re reading this, you know I have over 20 books and novels out there. And in my “spare time” I create sculptures. At the very least, I think that puts me in the satisfactory category as far as conjuring-up-stuff is concerned. Here are a few of the very basic scenarios I actually use and which are extremely effective not just for me, but Pamela as well…..arguably Pamela even more.
Count Dracula: I attack in the dark of night when Pamela is asleep. My target: that warm, soft part of the back of her neck. It doesn’t begin with a bite…that comes later, and I can become utterly lost in this alternative reality. I won’t insult, nor try to titillate you with too many details, but I will share one very real consequence of this dreamscape. On one particularly amorous occasion, I whispered deeply in her ear that I wished I could see (and attack) the back of her neck more often. This was followed by a small, quick bite. Literally, the next day, her hair was quickly styled shorter, her neck always partially exposed for potential biting. Pamela is very happy with her new styling, and so am I. The back of the neck is as important as anything I can think of…and delicious. Just try not to draw blood. Hickies are okay.
In my mind, Pamela has been…a camp counselor, a camper (that I’m saving after she’s tipped over the canoe), a French professor who keeps me after class, a stew (as opposed to a flight attendant) who has nowhere to stay in Paris. Pamela has also been (this is harder to explain) the mother of some fictitious girl I’ve been dating, she’s been a nurse, a patient (I’m a shrink in these scenarios), and a ballerina just coming off stage, (this one was true) , and well…it goes on and on and on. I pay great attention to details, what she’s wearing, the music, her choice of underclothes…including fabric (always silk) and color (mostly black). In my mind a whole little play…plays out. When you’re in that play, it’s very stimulating.
Is it stupid? I don’t think it’s any stupider than paying $50 for a pill that only affects your plumbing. In short, it’s great and everyone’s happy. To balance on the other side of the coin, Pamela really, really likes Zorro, but she LOVES Count Dracula, too, and strangely, guys who can use a chainsaw…boy am I in luck on that one. Your fantasies can and should vary. The point goes back to an old song from the 50s: Standing on the Corner...watching all the girls go by. One of the more memorable lyrics is, “Brother, you can’t go to jail for what you’re thinking.”
Prime Directive Rules: Respect, Love, Empathy, + brush your teeth, gargle, shower occasionally. Although these should go without saying, you will not believe how many spouses roll their eyes toward their mates when I see them. I think I’d add EAGERNESS to the top of that list. There is nothing so attractive as running into someone who just really really thinks you’re neat!
P.S. Okay… You can blame this observation on Pamela! After just proofing this article, Pamela concluded that things continue to be how they continue to be. Women like cucumbers and men like pie.