I’m a smoker and my partner is a nonsmoker. He says his face goes numb when I give him head. His theory is that the penis is permeable and is absorbing the nicotine in my saliva. It’s a good theory, but it’s only his face that goes numb–his cheeks and lips, not his whole head or his dick head. He really enjoys it, so it’s not a problem. I’m just curious whether or not he’s right. –Not Underestimating My Blow Jobs

I haven’t the faintest idea what’s happening to your boyfriend’s face, NUMB, but I’ve seen pictures of what’s happening to your lungs. My advice: quit smoking, and if your boyfriend’s facial numbness during blow jobs subsides, well, then he was right about the nicotine. Don’t want to quit smoking? Then your boyfriend should find some other mouth to stuff his junk into.

I’m sorry if that answer wasn’t very helpful. Or sympathetic. But smoking? Ick. Stop already. Yuck. Gross. Blech.

Moving on, I was all set to do a really kick-ass column this week on cuckolding–wherein a straight man watches, or is told about, another man having sex with his wife or girlfriend–when one of my coworkers walked in with a pan of pumpkin pot cake. She told us that the cake was a complete failure as a drug: she’d eaten two pieces the night before and hadn’t gotten high at all. It was, however, pretty tasty cake, so she brought it in to work to share with everybody.

Well, it seems that my coworker’s tolerance for THC is a lot higher than mine. I had one little sliver of cake–maybe two–and now I’m so fucking baked I can hardly see my laptop. I shouldn’t be writing a column in this condition–goodness, what if someone were to actually take my advice?–but deadlines are deadlines, and no editor will accept performance- dehancing drugs as an excuse for missing one. So I set aside the contentious cuckolding issue until next week and scrounged up a few questions that, even stoned, I can’t screw up. Or can I?

As an 18-year-old Canadian gal, I feel compelled to tell you that you rock. On to business: forgive me if this is an asinine question (how often do you hear that?), but how do I put it tactfully to my boyfriend of 1.5 years (and going alarmingly strong!) that I think I want to do him with a strap-on, in part because I’m pretty sure from things he’s said that he’d enjoy it? Is there even a way to put it nonbluntly? I would rather suggest it subtly if I can. Any information regarding obtaining said object, such as prices, sizes, etc, would also be much appreciated. –Timid in Toronto

You think you want to do your boyfriend in the butt with a strap-on?

Well, TIT, I think I speak for straight boys everywhere when I say this: no straight boy is going to offer up his butt cherry to a girl who isn’t completely certain that pegging his ass is something she absolutely, positively wants to do. Not something she’s contemplating, TIT, not something she’s mulling over. Because the last thing a straight boy wants to hear once he’s face down, lubed up, and white knuckling the sides of the mattress is “Naaaaaah, I guess not.” Actually, that’s the second-to-last thing he wants to hear. The last thing he wants to hear is “I didn’t know there’d be so much blood.”

So before you broach the subject, TIT, you’re going to need to commit. You need to present this idea to him with so much passion and fire that he understands that you wanna, gotta fuck that beautiful little ass of his. Can you accomplish this while being tactful, nonblunt, and subtle? No, no, and no. There simply isn’t a tactful, nonblunt, subtle way to tell a man that you want to fuck his ass. There is no comforting euphemism, no way to soften the blow. You’re just going to have to let him have it, TIT, if you ever want to let him have it.

As for pegging supplies and equipment, check out the goods at these fine Web sites: babeland.com, goodvibes.com, grandopening.com, comeasyouare.com, venusenvy.ca, and womynsware.com.

I’m a huge fan and never thought that I would be writing you a letter like this. But how can you denounce the actions of the Craigslist asshole who exposed all of those kinky fellas a few months back, then turn around and praise the actions of the male prostitute who outed Ted Haggard?

Don’t get me wrong, I think Haggard is a hypocritical douche bag. But isn’t what the prostitute did worse than what the Craigslist asshole did, since sex workers are paid as much for privacy as they are for sex? –Don’t Be a Hypocrite, Dan

The crucial difference between the Craigslist asshole and Mike Jones, the escort who outed Haggard, is this: the asshole outed men who were just minding their own kinky business and looking for people who shared their kinks. They were not powerful political or religious figures who were indulging in kinky sex while at the same time pushing laws that strip other kinky folks of their right to wed, adopt, be free from harassment, etc. The men the asshole outed were not towering hypocrites–and Jones outed Haggard for his hypocrisy, not his homosexuality.

I’m an average guy, not a big stud. My relationships with women have usually been long ones, never quick affairs or one-night stands. But there is this woman at work who, little by little, I’ve become attracted to. I’ve been having dreams, real hot fantasies, about her. I found out she’s going to leave her job and pretty much move away. I probably won’t see her again. Any suggestions on how I can approach this without sounding like an asshole? –Clueless on the Job


All unwelcome advances are made by assholes, COTJ, while all welcome advances are made by nonassholes. But since it’s the reaction of the advanced-upon that determines asshole status, and since you can’t know if an advance is unwelcome until after you’ve made it, you have to risk sounding like an asshole or you’ll never get laid. So are you an asshole? There’s only one way to find out: hit on her. Be respectful and upbeat about it, do it at an appropriate moment (drinks sometime?), and wait till she’s no longer employed at the place where you work, particularly if she’s under you.

Send questions to mail@savagelove.net. © 2006 Dan Savage