Monday, August 29, 2011
It is my job to keep myself on the very forefront of knowing and understanding the latest medical technology as it becomes available. Amazing advances that significantly improve human life on this planet are happening nearly every day. But when it comes to medicine and how it applies itself to sex, pleasure, and reproduction (or avoiding reproduction) I am often sad how little there is to report.
My whole life I've been waiting for a viable, temporary male contraceptive and I am utterly shocked that we cannot seem to figure out how to keep sperm from flowing out the end of a penis without permanently severing, tying, and cauterizing the vas deferens. I got really excited by the VasClip, and even some crazy ideas that came out of Canada about placing glue in the vas deference that would block sperm flow until the patient had it surgically removed. Alas, we've found that even while restoring the function of the vas deferens isn't a problem, even for traditional "cut and burn" vasectomies, keeping the patient's body from learning how to destroy its own sperm is. As it turns out, not allowing your sperm to leave can cause your body to begin fighting it off with its immune system as though it were a virus. So, no vas deferens blocking methods are going to be FDA approved until the return to potency efficacy is ~100%
So in with the hormones, which I'm not a fan of for men or for women. Jade can be an awfully mean person when she's on oral birth control and she can turn on you on a dime. One minute you are hanging out enjoying pleasant conversation and the next you are crawling around on the floor chasing your testicles that she cut off midway through her last sentence. The hormones that seem to work pretty well for male contraception is one we all know too well, testosterone. It is the stuff that makes men manly and hairy and smelly and all that stuff. When given in relatively high doses to men via subdural injection, it sends a message to the testicles which sounds something like this. "We got plenty of testosterone already, shut down all testicular operations. Thanks for your cooperation." Then the patient's gonads just take a long nap until testosterone levels in the blood drop to unacceptable levels. While I'm sure that you and I can think of plenty of reasons why this is a horrible idea, I'm certain that this will be the continued strategy of drug companies who are looking for a way to market to people trying to not have ugly babies.
So bring on the sterilization for those who never want ugly babies or for those who have had enough cute ones and don't want to take the risk of
rolling an unlucky bounce off the back of the craps table. The vasectomy is the absolute best choice for couples who wish for permanent sterilization and who's gonad-toting half isn't a wimp. As far as discomfort goes, I'd rather have another vasectomy over even minor dental work. I took diazepam the day of the procedure and couldn't care less what the doctor was doing down there and spent the next day on the couch watching bad science fiction movies holding an icepack on my scrotum. Honestly it was mildly uncomfortable more than it was painful. It is a small price to pay for a lifetime of sex without worry. The new techniques don't even use needles or scalpels so I fail to understand why men are scared of this technique at all. If you are one of those freaks who read the internet looking for stories of guys complaining about Epididymitis after the procedure, you really need to understand that of all the medical procedures that you could have, this is one of the safest and most effective.
For female birth control, the options are as abundant as the choices in Jade's Amazon wishlist. To add to the pill, we now have the patch and the ring and I believe they are even working on tiara with matching earrings. :P Since I'm against hormones so much (due largely to the fact that I like my testicles where they are) I am confused as to why anyone who was planning on not needing to get pregnant over the next one to five years would choose anything but a non-hormonal copper IUD. Just listen to the advertising for these things. No pills. No hormones. No daily or weekly routines. No associated weight gain. Yes, this last one was right off of ParaGard's website. In my opinion this is the absolutely perfect solution for nearly any woman regardless of age or whether or not they've had kids yet. When you go looking for these you may encounter doctors that will steer you away from them if you are younger, or haven't had kids. You might even find doctors who don't endorse their use at all. If this happens to you, get a new doctor. I know a lot of women who have these and LOVE THEM and they are all ages and most of them don't have kids, a good sign that they are working :P. I've talked to lots of doctors about IUDs too and have found that not all doctors are good at what they do and the ones who prefer prescribing pills to patients are the ones that don't innovate. They were the ones in school that probably didn't hit all the extra-credit available to them.
My favorite thing about copper IUDs is that the manufacturers don't know, or more accurately claim to not know how they prevent pregnancy. Listen to the Dr. Bloom video on this web page ParaGard isn't a barrier like a condom or a diaphragm…" "It works primarily by blocking sperm from reaching the egg and fertilizing it." Does anyone else find these two statements contradictory? Later in the video she can be quoted saying, "It sounds pretty easy, right? It is." The reason that I find this bit of corporate fast handing so interesting is that they don't want to admit that it is very likely that sperm is fertilizing the eggs but because you've got a coper wire in your uterus, your body is going to kick that egg out like a star destroyer jettisons its trash before it jumps to light-speed. Only Boba Fett is wise enough to know the difference and most of the pro-life nut-cases aren't nearly crafty enough to start chanting and making posters that say, "IUDs are an abortion a month!" So I say, rock on with the careful wordplay and pretending to not understand something that may upset crazy people.
For female sterilization, tubal ligation has been used for the past 80 years to keep sad situations like the Duggars from becoming reality TV shows. It works but let's be very clear, it is no minor medical procedure, it is major surgery requiring the patient to undergo general anesthesia. if you are getting one because your partner is to wimpy to get a vasectomy, please give me his approximate location and I'll kick him in the balls hard enough where it may not be a concern for you any longer. Luckily, advancements in laparoscopic surgical tools made it possible to perform a very effective female sterilization without even making an incision. The Essure implant is a small coil that is inserted through the vagina, cervix, uterus, and finally the fallopian tube where it stays. With in a few months it bioincorporates itself like the Borg and causes a scar to form blocking your eggs from ever seeing the light of day, much less one of those vicious chromosome carrying sperm.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
2 Eggs, cheese, veggies (we prefer peppers, spinach and scallions.
1. TIP! When cracking your eggs, use a butcher knife to score the egg. It makes the edges nice and smooth so that you can separate the yolk without tearing it.
2. Separate one yolk and put it aside for later.
3. Wash and prep your veggies.
4. Chop veggies as desired.
5. Salt and season veggies to preferred taste.
6. Whip eggs to even consistency.
7. Optionally, add a splash of soy milk. It changes the density of the omelet.
8. Set burner to low temp.
9. Evenly oil pan.
10. Pour egg mix into pan.
11. Rotate pan so that eggs creep up on the side. This will give your omelet a flakey edge.
12. Evenly distribute veggies and cheese on top leaving a small, yolk-shaped void in the middle.
13. Allow to cook until the edges can be peeled off the side of the pan.
14. Carefully place the separated yolk in the center.
15. Fold edges of the omelet.
16. Once folded, flip omelet upside down and continue to allow to cook until yolk warms.
17. Carefully slide omelet out of pan onto plate.
18. Serve and enjoy.
Friday, August 26, 2011
So...one thing you should know about me is I am really great at starting projects. The follow through, on the other hand, is not one of my strengths. So if something requires only minimal love and care, it is my friend (thus explaining many of my problems properly caring for Kidder Kaper :P ).
Now, I love gardens. I love them in May and June. When July hits, I am bored (the sunny beach and a good book are always calling my name by July). I will water them if there is a drought, weed them in bulk when the flowers are being overtaken, and that is about ALL I can give my garden. But at the same time, when August rolls around, I am desperate to harvest tomatoes, zucchini, peppers and green beans. My love of the vegetable garden can be attributed to my Grandpa. He was an adorable, short, dark haired, full-blooded Italian. (I strongly urge you not to pronounce Italian with a long I at the beginning lest you want the wrath of Jade to come down on you) and I was his favorite grandchild. He had a small, sun-filled yard, with a lovely vegetable garden. He planted rows in exactly the same spot every year. Tomatoes, green beans, zucchini, cucumber, green peppers. He watered them every day and once a week put Miracle-grow on them. I grew up enjoying special family recipes all summer long that featured his perfect harvest. The things my grandparents and my parents made from his harvest are cherished memories. The last two years of his life, he was slowly dying from cancer. I stopped by his house several times per week to do some housework, help with grocery shopping, and for those last two summers, do all the garden labor. He taught me how to plant his vegetables from seed. He taught me how to weed it properly, and he lovingly instructed me on the proper use of Miracle-grow.
In the spring of 2010, I told Kidder that I wanted a vegetable garden for Mothers’ Day. We live in the country, so I needed his help in building a fenced in garden so the deer would not eat every last thing I planted. He was amazing. He designed the garden, picked up the supplies, and we built it together. When it was all fenced in, we had 16 yards of garden compost delivered and he brought it into my garden with the four-wheeler. By mid-May, it was time to plant everything I started from seed (first inside under a heat lamp, and then outside on the deck, bringing the plants in each night to protect them from the cold evenings). I had watermelon, squash, pea pods, beets, carrots, and of course my favorites, tomatoes, green beans, zucchini, cucumber, green peppers. I even added oregano, basil, sage, and cilantro. I watered these plants diligently through June. They looked like crap. They were not growing. Nothing was producing flowers that would lead to vegetables and when they did, the flowers would fall off with no result. My harvest was pathetic. By the end of summer, I produced two squash, one bunch of stringy carrots, six peapods, and enough green beans to make a side dish for dinner one night. I was so angry. I even used the stupid Miracle-grow about once a month (which is a lot for me based on my tenacity).
Now when things go wrong, I usually blame just about anything other than myself, so I automatically assumed that either my garden wasn’t getting enough sun (must task Kidder with cutting down a few trees) or my soil was crap. As it turns out, my soil was indeed crap! Lorax gave me a soil tester for my birthday last summer so this spring before planting, I used it and found my expensive 16 yards of garden compost was completely lacking in Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium. Since I did not have an extra $400.00 laying around to buy an additional 16 yards of decent soil in May, I bought a few bags of potting soil to try to give my plants a chance this year. For each plant I put in the garden I dug an extra big hole and filled it with my fancy potting soil. I maintained my watering schedule through June and used Miracle-Grow once or twice. Thankfully we had much rain this year so my lack of watering did not cause many problems.
Now that it is August and I am greedily awaiting my crop, I am happy to report that I have had a decent harvest. I have picked enough green beans to feed my family four times. I have already picked four small zucchini to make the old family recipe of fried zucchini as well as a few fat ones to make zucchini bread. I have pulled four peppers out and used them in soup and eggs, and I have at least 20 green tomatoes that I am hoping will ripen without splitting. My carrots and beets are looking a little pathetic, so I am waiting a few weeks to pull them out of the ground, but other than that, I must say that my laissez-faire attitude has pleased me this season. Imagine what I can accomplish next summer when I further amend my soil, water and fertilize at least a few more times, and make Kidder cut down a few more trees to up the time my garden spends in the sun!
Thursday, August 25, 2011
One of the stereotypes of Minnesotans that I find to be very true is that people make friends for life. What I mean by that is that for many of us, our best friends as adults, are often people we’ve know since high school or even grade school. Don’t get me wrong, this is one of the things I love about my life in Minnesota. I have history with most of the people I interact with that is loaded with great memories. But (there is always a but, isn’t there?) I have recently started to realize that this mindset makes it difficult to expand your social circles.
Take kids sporting events for instance. My son recently started playing football. He is on a team that is filled with kids who have been playing together for a few years and he is the new guy. Now kids can make friends and fit in easily, but as a parent, trying to break into the mom-clique is no easy task. Even the dad’s tend to stick to themselves and talk to the “guys” they know well. Now I am a relatively friendly person, if a little shy at first. I have no trouble meeting “Non-vanilla” people at social events. They want to meet new people, talk, and find new common interests so it is easy to walk up to a group of people talking about something and just join in the conversation.
This is not the case on the playground! I find myself trying to join into the conversation and one of two things happen. I get a relatively blank stare with a “polite” smile or I get lost in my own thoughts because what they are talking about is so boring I just can’t follow (ie; discussing their 11 year old sons’ bathroom habits or setting up junior high “play dates”).
I make friends much easier in situations where I can smile a lot, flirt a little, and ask strangely personal questions to really get to know someone. I am pretty sure that this kind of behavior on the playground will not only turn me into an outcast but also make life difficult for my children. So for now, I will do my best to pick appropriate topics and step out of my comfort zone just a little by being bold and introducing myself to those mom’s despite the fact that they look at me like I am not one of them because our kids did not go to the same pre-school. Maybe I will meet someone I have something in common with that way. Wish me luck!
Kidder Kaper is a published author, sex educator, activist and game designer. The overwhelming catalog of his work can be found at http://www.sexisfun.net Email him at email@example.com
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
I really look forward to hearing/seeing what Gay Rick and Laura Rad do now that they have complete control of the show. I suspect that I'll be their biggest fan, and in all fairness, perhaps their loudest critic, but I am completely confident that they'll do right by the audience and by the mission that created the show in the first place.
I could so very easily walk away from all of this at this time of my life. I could kick back and take it easy, be a selfish hedonist and hang my gun on the wall. I cannot deny that there is a part of me that finds a newly discovered serenity in walking away from Kidder Kaper, and to be honest the major reason that I'm not, is Jade.
When I began this whole sex educator, podcast, activist-thing, it was something that made Jade uncomfortable, embarrassed, and was the source of many relationship conflicts for us. The only thing that carried me through in the early stages of my career was the letters from my readers and listeners that shared with me their personal stories and how my efforts had helped them have better sex, relationships and indeed many who claimed I'd saved their marriages. It was impossible for Jade to truly condemn me for doing what I was driven to do. Helping people is something that we both value.
Then something changed around the time when I signed the book deal with Penguin. The show had gained significant listenership and my press mentions were always memorable to say the least. Jade had fans of her own and got a taste of fame and I kinda think she liked it. I also started making money from the sexisfun.net operation around that time, but for me, money was never my motivating factor. I think that to Jade, money just meant that my efforts were legitimized. She stopped referring to my SiF gig as a, "hobby." This was a term she used that I found exceptionally hurtful, as to me, it was nothing short of a mission that I passionately perused.
When I felt as though I'd accomplished what I needed to accomplish, I began considering my retirement. I'd imagined all the significant ways in which to kill the monster that Kidder had become but Jade wouldn't have it. She liked the props that came with being in the Kaper entourage and even said, "If Kidder dies, what happens to me?" To which I would respond, "You mean Jade?" Yes, it is strange how the alias becomes the person and vice versa. For me, Kidder was a name under which I projected my ideas, but for my wife, Jade gave her the freedom to become the strong sexually powerful woman that she is.
So here we are. We are Jade and Kidder, the Kapers, if you will, with her help, I realize that there is still significant and important work to do. Jade wants to continue recording the Bathtalk show and I think that the show has potential to be great. Of course it will only be great if we care enough to supply the audience with what they want and need. If it is important to the both of us there is a lot we could accomplish. Only time will tell if it is. We've also decided to begin blogging together and she's committed to two contributions per month. Again, only time will tell if this is a commitment that she's capable of fulfilling over the long haul. I for one am very excited to see what she has to say and encourage everyone to encourage her to find her inner-writer, storyteller, and advisor that I know she can be.
So I'll match whatever she submits, story for story and this is my first blog entry. With it I've taken the maiden head off this blank page and covered it with my own digital ink bukake. For fans that have known us, know that I cannot be censored or to be censored is so demoralizing to me that I will only continue with this shared project if I feel allowed to write what I feel like writing about. There's a reason that all of my published articles are merely optioned re-prints taken from media outlets where I have total editorial control. I'm not good at taking orders and never pretended to be. When you see my name on a document, you certainly can be sure that what you are reading is the truth, as I see it, and that if I write it, it is something that I care, most often, deeply about.
One of the things that I care about is having healthy, fun, exciting, enjoyable, and lasting relationships. I care about raising healthy, emotionally secure, intellectually enabled, ethically enriched children, who become adults capable of finding purpose in their lives. I care about philosophy, and making at least a decent attempt at fixing flawed ideology. I intend to write about all that I care about on this blog, and I indeed hope that we are capable of providing something significant, or if not, perhaps a laugh. We've got recipes, crafty crap that scrapbookers will dig, activities for making time spent with offspring a little more enjoyable, sex advice, stories and just about everything that we think is kinda cool. It will be a learning experience and the discovery should be interesting, or at least entertaining.
With hopes for your reading, comments, and enjoyment, this is the first post in the Jade and Kidder blog.
Kidder & Jade have been married for 14 years, have two kids, a dog, and take pride in figuring it out as they go. Hear there adventures, misadventures, and get everything from craft ideas to sex advice by subscribing to their weekly blog, podcast, and other antics at www.bathtalkweekly.com
Kidder Kaper is a published author, sex educator, activist and game designer. The overwhelming catalog of his work can be found at http://www.sexisfun.net
Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org