A As In Zilch

By Charles Alexander

Parting Glances

There's been a bland addition to the soup. (Or is it stew?) The label on the can now reads LGBTA. The LGBT stands for the usual spicy noodles and meatballs; the A stands for asexual, as in "An asexual is someone who leaves the room and nobody gives a damn one way or the other."

Frankly, I've never encountered anyone who wouldn't dare or care for a diddle, but I once met a guy who said that until age 30 he hadn't wanked alone, with a partner, or in the happy-go-lucky company of a circle jerk. (He traveled exclusively in square, knee-jerk circles.)

I have no idea who tumbled him down the slippery slope of fun and games, and it wasn't me who escorted him hand-in-hand (or whatever) picking cherries along life's sunny rimrose path. But I do recall hearing about another 25-year-old bloke who had no libido, period. Zilch.

Turns out his problem was organic. He had a tumor pressing on that part of the brain responsible for getting it on and off. Once an operation was performed, a whole new world of libidinous adventure opened: courtship, marriage, children, divorce, alimony, child support, burnout, and overcompensatory total exhaustion . . . .

Poor guy. He shudda stayed in bed with his socks on.

According to a Brock University (St. Catherines, Ont.) study this newly outed asexual breed of homo-sapiens (emphasis on syllable three) makes up one percent of the population. Findings are detailed in The Journal of Sex Research (I have a lifetime subscription with coupon-clipping privileges) and New Scientist.

According to New Scientist, "The response level is close to the percentage of gay people . . . which is around three percent." (I don't mean to quibble but a two percent difference when it involves millions of people is quite a difference. But don't get me wrong. I'm not putting asexuals down. I just don't want one to hit on me.)

New Scientist admits the results are controversial and offers a caveat: "The closest we have come to understanding human asexuals comes from studies -- mostly surveys -- of people who report not having sex." (And do they cheat on their income taxes?)

Having not had sex myself lately, I suppose I qualify by default. It's reassuring to feel not wanted, er, wanted, er, whatever.

New Scientist coyly adds: "If asexuality is indeed a form of sexual orientation [Aside: Is starvation a form of eating?], perhaps it will not be long before the issue of 'A' Pride starts attracting more attention. Activists have already started campaigning to promote awareness and acceptance of asexuality." (P'town nursing homes.)

Lest anyone think yours truly made any of this up, let me hasten to assure you that the flat champagne has indeed already been uncorked. An Asexual Visibility Education Network exists, with online store. AVEN sells T-shirts: "Asexuality: it's not just for amoebas." (Earthworms or Michael J)

As expected, the fundies and Focus on the Family are having fits of righteous dysentery. Ex-Asexual Ministries (Amoebas for Jesus) are being activated in "strongholds" like Boston, Hell MI, and the Greater Zug Island Bar & Grill.

A4J Founder Rev. Pat Freeloader says, "We want to save these anemics who won't procreate or have the decency as good Americans to even try to have an abortion. The next thing you know they'll want to marry each other, form Straight-Asexual Alliances, and serve in the military and seduce our troops."

Asexuals of America, UNITE! (Divide and conquer.)

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