Total Drek

Or, the thoughts of several frustrated intellectuals on Sociology, Gaming, Science, Politics, Science Fiction, Religion, and whatever the hell else strikes their fancy. There is absolutely no reason why you should read this blog. None. Seriously. Go hit your back button. It's up in the upper left-hand corner of your browser... it says "Back." Don't say we didn't warn you.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Today on Total Drek: Penises!

Every now and then readers send me tidbits of news or interesting information that make it into a blog post. I generally rather enjoy this reader participation as it reminds me that I'm not just talking to myself here. In any case, a reader, who shall remain nameless because that's what he seems to want, recently sent me a rather fascinating article about penises. No, I'm not kidding. Specifically, this article is about the apparent revelation that Indian men have small penises:

A survey of more than 1,000 men in India has concluded that condoms made according to international sizes are too large for a majority of Indian men.

The study found that more than half of the men measured had penises that were shorter than international standards for condoms.


Over 1,200 volunteers from the length and breadth of the country had their penises measured precisely, down to the last millimetre.

The scientists even checked their sample was representative of India as a whole in terms of class, religion and urban and rural dwellers.

The conclusion of all this scientific endeavour is that about 60% of Indian men have penises which are between three and five centimetres shorter than international standards used in condom manufacture.

First off, I think we can all thank the celebrated English wit for that "length and breadth" remark. It's nice to see that the British have gotten over their colonial guilt enough to make subtle wang jokes at the expense of their former subjects. Indeed, bravo. If it makes you feel any better, India, the English were pretty hard on us after the Revolutionary War. They're just trying to distract us all from the terrifying headgear of their royal family. More importantly, however, while there is ample opportunity for humor here, it is at least somewhat misplaced.

Many societies are obsessed with the size, shape, or quality of certain bodily parts. Here in the U.S., for example, this is apparent in the form of breast fetishism, the consequences of which we've touched on before.* Similarly, penis size and girth are regarded as important issues speaking to a man's potency. A man with a small penis, it is thought, will be an unimportant man. Perhaps fortunately for men, our penises are less susceptible to casual evaluation** than are a woman's breasts, and so we are spared some of the more aggravating consequences of penis fetishism. How women put up with that shit, I'll never know.

In any case, as often as I object to breast fetishism*** it at least isn't likely to get anyone killed. Sadly, however, the current problem Indian men have is:

Doctor Chander Puri, a specialist in reproductive health at the Indian Council of Medical Research, told the BBC there was an obvious need in India for custom-made condoms, as most of those currently on sale are too large.

The issue is serious because about one in every five times a condom is used in India it either falls off or tears, an extremely high failure rate.

And the country already has the highest number of HIV infections of any nation.

So, yes, while obsession with breasts is certainly an issue, and it does impact many women's lives (not to mention produce some truly shitty jokes) it isn't likely to spread life-threatening disease. Unfortunately, however inclined we may be to crack jokes at the expense of Indian men and their tiny penises**** the issue is one of life and death.

Mr Puri said that since Indians would be embarrassed about going to a chemist to ask for smaller condoms there should be vending machines dispensing different sizes all around the country.

"Smaller condoms are on sale in India. But there is a lack of awareness that different sizes are available. There is anxiety talking about the issue. And normally one feels shy to go to a chemist's shop and ask for a smaller size condom." [link added for the sake of immature humor]

Which is sad and ironic considering that Indian men are only smaller in comparison to non-Indian men. Small is, after all, in the eye of the beholder. Fortunately, there is something of a solution to this problem:

But Indian men need not be concerned about measuring up internationally according to Sunil Mehra, the former editor of the Indian version of the men's magazine Maxim.

"It's not size, it's what you do with it that matters," he said.

"From our population, the evidence is Indians are doing pretty well.

Ah, yes, "it's not the size that counts, it's how you use it." Bold, new advice that has, indeed, served women well. For that matter, men have had and interesting time with it as well.

Seriously, if that's our public health solution to this problem, we're fucking doomed.

* Those of you who are laughing because I used "touched on" following the word "breast" really need to watch less Beevis and Butthead.

** A friend of mine, of course, would want me to comment here that men do show off their penis size, but in terms of what they do. So, for example, common wisdom is that a man who owns a certain kind of car must be compensating for a small penis. If that's true, then judging by my car, I must have a penis the size of a baseball bat.

*** Which is somewhat ironic given how eager I am to mention breasts on the blog at every opportunity. Not to mention provide links, as though you don't know what they are.

**** And, no, I'm not above it either. I've been trying, though.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel I must call you on your propensity to show actual pictures when discussing female sex organs, but not including pictures like this when discussing male sex organs. I think it only fair... - A Non-Impartial Reader

Friday, December 15, 2006 8:44:00 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Site Meter