The Happy Trail

A chemistry lesson

Someone of the sex you fancy walks into the room and suddenly you’re acutely aware of their very presence. Your senses sharpen, like a cheetah lusting after a distant zebra’s plump rump. Why do you have the sudden urge to whisper in that person’s ear, “Take me?”

This immediate, inexplicable attraction to someone, even while knowing them little or not at all, is chemistry—like a moth to a flame.

Think for a second, if you will, of a person that you’ve seen that gives you butterflies, or maybe someone that makes you get all sweaty and start babbling.

Now, the huge nerd in me could rattle on about major histocompatibility complexes and hip-to-waist ratios, but the truth is that attraction’s usually pretty unexpected. You can look at a person and not feel anything, while your friend gets all hot and bothered at the mere sight of that object of obscure desire.

But if, when you do feel that pull toward someone, the sexual tension becomes so thick you could cut it with a spork, you should acknowledge and respect it.

As a personal philosophy, I used to hold my relationships to two standards: trust and respect. Somewhere along the line, however,  I added chemistry to this list. Trust and respect can be earned (within reason), but chemistry can be more difficult to “work on,” and is a bummer to miss out on.

This standard of chemistry can be difficult to implement, as you want to give people a chance if they express interest.

Say, for example, that you get asked to coffee or on a date and you aren’t immediately attracted to that person, but you decide to give them a chance. I think it’s a good idea to go on one date to see if sparks fly. If they don’t, it’s important to be honest with your date.

This honesty is the hardest part because it can be pretty bleak and feelings get hurt, so wording is important to minimize that hurt.

As this IS a sex column, I can’t help but note that chemistry is like currency in the bedroom. Just like skrillah, you want just enough to be comfortable.  And, in this case, to have hot, hot sex.

There’s a quote that goes, “There are too many mediocre things in life to deal with, love shouldn’t be one of them. Anything less than extraordinary is a waste of my time.”

This Jill Robinson quote really speaks to me, but instead of love, insert “relationships” or “my sex life.”

As my brilliant colleague once wrote about in The Happiest Trail on Earth, you shouldn’t have sex just because you can. If you aren’t pumped about it, chances are it’s going to be a lukewarm experience.

The bottom line is to make sure you want to rip your partner’s clothes off when you’re deciding if you’re DTF.