Okay yeah sex is good but have you ever had the creamy crab and shrimp risotto from Quaker Kitchen after your first day of classes and followed it with the creamy tiramisu for dessert and your body literally shook—well, in the case of this strategically named dining hall, quaked—with pleasure?
William Penn establishing Pennsylvania as the Quaker province in the 1680s directly caused that line to be written—nay, happened only for that line to be written, I’m convinced. Best domino effect in history.
And yeah sex is cool but have you ever argued your case to your organic chemistry teaching assistant the day after the scores for the final were released, because he was, quite literally, edging you to an A, and then winning the argument (by a sweet, sweet technicality) to receive the singular point needed to take you over the edge?
In hindsight, perhaps I wouldn’t have needed such a saving grace if I had spent more time studying organic chemistry instead of the anatomy of my boyfriend. But unfortunately I was too distracted having my guts rearranged to care more about rearranging carbocations. A sweet victory was achieved in the end, though. One arguably sweeter than the other.
Because yeah sure sex is great but have you ever had a scaldingly hot shower after days of cold showers (because the dormitory you pay a disturbingly large amount of money for, in the Ivy League institution that gets a disturbingly large endowment every year, had decided to stop running hot water for a few days in the middle of the winter cold) and felt all of your worries and cares melt away with your skin?
Yeah sex is nice but have you ever had your dad jokingly hold up three fingers, your mom question why he’s holding up the symbol for the Mockingjay from Hunger Games, only for your dad to tell your mom to read between the lines? And she innocently asks if it means “I love you” but what he really meant was to literally look between the lines to see that he’s holding up his middle finger to jokingly flip someone off. But you can tell he really loves her because he chuckles adoringly and nods. And he tells her what it actually means but that he prefers her interpretation. And she laughs, and he laughs, and you laugh with them both.
And you think to yourself how easy love must be. How wonderfully easy, to just laugh.
And yeah sex is good but have you ever binge watched all of the Spider–Man movies, from Tobey Maguire to Andrew Garfield to Tom Holland, in the span of winter break because he’s your boyfriend’s childhood hero and it’s the closest thing you’ll get to watching your boyfriend growing up? And your eyes are getting tired, but his eyes are lighting up, and all of it’s worth it just to see that little—kid smile on his face.
Then you realize just precisely what you’d given him: the power to break your heart, and the responsibility to take care of it. Because you’ve fallen hard (though hopefully not as hard as Gwen Stacy), but he’s there to catch your fall.
And of course sex is good but have you ever opened your door to your best friend holding up a cup of thai tea, with less ice and 75% sugar, because she remembered that’s how you like it, without ever asking for it? And you thank William Penn, or Ben Franklin, or whoever built that TeaDo on Chestnut Street, for what’s actually the best domino effect in history.
But if we’re talking about domino effects I should raise the contender of tracing my history on the palms of my grandmother. How her existence has led to mine, how her embrace means more than just a hug from a person, because it’s past and present colliding, it’s future being made.
Then you realize that yeah sex is good, but perhaps intimacy is even better.
To know yourself—love yourself—so well that you take care of your body with a creamy crab and shrimp risotto, that you rejoice in your own accomplishments, no matter how small—because size doesn’t matter here.
To find love in the smallest moments, in silly jokes and Marvel movies, in knowing your best friend’s boba order by heart, in cooking food with your grandmother, in living so fully, so brightly, so vividly your heart might burst.
So yeah sex is good but have you ever written about things that are better than sex and poured so much of yourself into it, put too many self—incriminating anecdotes to be truly anonymous, and felt more bare and more naked than you do during the physical act?
Ah, well, never mind. Nothing beats an orgasm.