I was having dinner last night with a group of friends somewhere in the Adams Morgan neighborhood when an admirer walked up to me to felicitate and inquire: “what’s next on your list of subjects to write about?” Well, since I don’t have such a list, I didn’t know what to say. As is commonly the case with me, I write whenever the spirit moves me. At other times, I write when I am sufficiently angry or befuddled. There is no routine to my style. I write when I have to write so long as I have ninety or so minutes to spare.
Taken aback by my new found friend’s inquiry, I said, “Sex…I’ll be writing about sex!”
The three members of my table, along with my new friend, went silent for about three seconds and then, almost in harmony, started chuckling…quietly and then loudly, followed by an uneasy silence and an inquisitive look. The stranger then asked: “pornography?” “No, no, no, that’s not what I am going to write about. I am not interested in writing about sex or lovemaking or about blowjobs or things like that. I am going to tell the story of two men, one white and one black, and their experiences with sexing outside their race” was my copious response.
I was thinking along that line because I remember the time a Ugandan friend came to me to reveal his joy-filled heart after his first sexual encounter with a White girl. Not long after that, he partook in a threesome with two White damsels. After all these years, he still revels in the blissful encounters. I also remember the request of a Caucasian colleague whose life ambition was to get into the pants of a Black woman. Week after week after week, that was all he talked about; that was all he wanted for breakfast, lunch and dinner — until fortune smiled at him. He is married to a Black woman now, but he keeps another as a mistress.
Anthony: You mean interracial sex…
Sabella: Sort of…
Bimpe: What’s so different or special about interracial sex?
Sabella: Well, there are those who think otherwise…that there is a world of difference
Ada: I don’t think so, sex is sex; with a black man or a white man…sex is sex
Nwachukwu: Oopss, not from what I know. My experiences are quite different
Sabella: How so?
Bimpe: Are you telling me what we do is different from what you’ve done in the past?
Anthony: Interesting, interesting…
Ada: Why are we having this discussion in the presence of someone we don’t know?
At this junction, I wanted to ask Anthony to leave, or hope he’ll take Ada’s subtle hint and leave. But he didn’t. Three or so minutes later, I thanked Anthony for his remarks regarding my leisure pursuits and hope he’ll continue to follow my work. He shook hands with everybody and was about to leave when his companion, an obvious African — who, as it turned out, has been his wife for six years — showed up. She is from the Indian Island nation of Zanzibar (Tanzania). How do we ask him and his wife to leave?
Anyways, before you knew it, Ada and Bimpe and Aiisha had begun to chit-chat about small and big stuff — there was an instant liking between the women. And before you knew it, a wait staff moved the seats to accommodate our new found friends. Half-an-hour later, Bimpe placed her right hand on Aiisha’s shoulder and asked: “what’s the difference between a black man and a white man?” There was no answer. There was no answer, only a startled and shy look from Aiisha. Then, her husband came to her rescue.
Bimpe: The question was whether there is a difference between what the whites and the blacks do in the bedroom; whether one race is better than the other when it comes to sex, or it is all just in our head? Personally, I read up on a lot of things. I bought the Kama Sutra, the Sanskrit treatise when I was 21 living in Denmark…
Ada: Gosh…I got the Kama Sutra as a present on my 22nd birthday…ha, what that book can do for you…good lord, save my soul from the valley of fire!
Nwachukwu: Really? Does Sabella know you have it?
Sabella: Indeed, what that book can do for ones soul
Anthony: You all are into esoteric sex and toys…
Nwachukwu and I have been friends for over a decade. Until his marriage to Bimpe, I had not seen him with a Black woman. His last and penultimate girl friends were from Venezuela and Greece. Before that he dated a voluptuous red-hair from Texas. And even when he lived in Paris, he didn’t care much for African women. He liked the way non-Africans made him feel in and out of the bedroom. He referred to his French girlfriend’s vagina as the “talker” or the “grabber” because, according to him, her vagina talked to him, grabs and squeezes him. Bimpe’s is the same.
He swore her vagina made him do things he otherwise wouldn’t do: using his tongue and lips and fingers and things like that. He swore he sees apparitions every time they make love. He hears things. He swore Bimpe’s canal did things no other (African) canal has ever done. True or not, I may never know. But ever since he introduced her, I have not stopped imagining things, wondering: is she as good as she is cracked up to be? May the good Lord forgive my soul…I am burning with lust…a fiery desire!
Aiisha: I was untaken, a virgin when I met my husband…
Anthony: From anal to oral, barebacking, ménage a trios, to erotic massage, hogging and asphyxiation to using sex toys like strap-ons and dildo we’ve tried it all.
Ada: Are you familiar with felching, snowballing, teabagging, bukkabe, tribbing and autoeroticism?
Anthony: Welcome to my world… Have you guys tried outercourse, i.e. frottage, interfremoral intercourse, axillary and mammary intercourse, and mutual masturbation”
Bimpe: Hey Aiisha, have you experimented with the Kegel exerciser?
Aiisha: Of course! Of course!! I also bought me a nipple clamp last week.
Nwachukwu: Aiisha, doesn’t your culture forbid any of your sexual menus?
Aiisha: I am sure it does; but according to Alfred Kinsey “The only unnatural sex act is that which you cannot perform.” Whatever we imagine we do if it is not gratuitous. Three years in Paris, five years in Amsterdam and three years in New Orleans, and now DC…whatever remained of my originality was diluted by ‘Tony…
Anthony: It s getting late. By the way, what did you say you were going to write about?
Sabella: “Sex…I am going to write about sex!”
Anthony: In what context?
Sabella: A Black man and a White man and their attitude towards interracial sex…
Aiisha: We look forward to it…it’s been nice meeting you. And thanks for inviting us to your table. I hope we meet again…Thanks!
The conversation was surreal. Most conversations about sex generally take place in the privacy of one’s home. And in most cases, African women are wary of participating in such dialogue or even in admitting to taking part in or liking “outlandish sexual acts.”
The more I think about the conversation, the closer I get to the realization that African women are not as timid as most men may think they are. What their western and Latin counterparts can do, African women may match or do better.
Sabella Ogbobode Abidde
Please, do not ask me about religion. I get the evil look every time I tell people I am an agnostic who teeters on atheism. My world resolves around ethics and the rule of law. That’s it. I have no use for religion: religious convictions are not part of my existence -- the laws of man are good enough for me. I have lived in several cities: Seattle, Miami, Norman, Minneapolis-Saint Paul, Saint Cloud, the District of Columbia, Houston, and Mankato. I am not sure where I am going to live next. And I have never really had a profession, only jobs: been a cook, a dishwasher, a civil servant, house cleaner, university instructor and researcher and so on and so forth. Every so often I get questions concerning the role and place of the African woman. Well, I don’t know; at least not with any certainty. What seems to work best is when both partners work as a team: cooperate, coordinate and collaborate their marital efforts. And they should be mindful of the insidious effect of modernization on the African family.