The following is an abridged excerpt from "The De-Textbook: The Stuff You Didn't Know About the Stuff You Thought You Knew" [Plume Books, $23.00]. The book debunks myths about everything from dinosaurs to Ancient Rome, to the often bizarre sex tips included in Cosmopolitan.
Cosmo says: Shake his nuts like you’re playing Yahtzee.
The most amazing oral sex I’ve ever had was from a woman who jiggled my balls back and forth with her hand, like she was shaking dice in a cup. I thought I was going to explode! - Curtis, 33
Here’s the first tip that “Curtis” is really “nonexistent”: the exclamation point at the end. Tip-off number two: drawing a comparison between the rapid rattling of hard cubes in a hard cup to any testicle-related sex act without audible gagging.
Cosmo says: Yank his crotch hair.
A little-known erogenous zone: the area between a guy’s navel and his penis. Lick it... or gently tug the hairs there. -Cesar, 28, “Sex Tips from Guys,” Cosmopolitan.com
Hey, ladies, have you ever heard a guy use the expression “He’s got me by the short hairs”? Was the guy using it in a positive way? No, because it’s meant to convey the image of somebody grabbing your pubic hair and causing so much pain that they can make you do anything. Nobody unwraps a gift at Christmas and says, “Thanks, Grandma! This Xbox 360 will really get me by the short hairs!”
Cosmo says: Give his wiener an Indian burn.
Make two fists around my shaft and twist them in opposite directions as fast as you can. - Jamie, 30, “100 Sex Tips from Guys,” September 2004
For those of you who never had older brothers, this technique, when applied to the forearm, is called an Indian burn. When done to the penis, it requires a new term completely. Something like “a crime a million times worse than murder.” We’re not even joking at this point. Seriously, don’t do this. Your boyfriend will not like it. He will lobby to have it banned by the Geneva conventions. They will build grim monuments to the men who have had this done to them with plaques that read “Let us never forget what Cosmo did to those fine men on that terrible day.”
Cosmo says: If he shares the details of his day, he must be hiding something.
Don’t be fooled by a guy who offers up tons of minor bits of information about where he’s been or what he’s been doing.
These are the paranoid ramblings of an insane mind. Sharing details about his day is a sure sign that he wants to talk with you about his day. The open exchange of information between two people who spend time together is generally seen as normal behavior by most societies, probably because society is cheating on you.
Cosmo says: If he swallows while talking, he’s lying.
When a secret is big enough that he’s worried he may lose something important if it’s revealed, research shows that his esophageal muscles will start to constrict, causing his throat to dry up. So if he begins swallowing a lot during your conversation, it’s because he’s trying to loosen up those throat muscles.
Or because he just smoked pot to ease the stress of dealing with your daily accusations of infidelity. Are you nervous about something? What are you nervous about? What are you hiding?
Cosmo says: If he wants more sex from his girl, he’s cheating.
Yes, maybe he’s just extra-horny or you’re looking extra-hot, but a sudden surge in his sexual appetite can also be a sign that something’s awry. A man who’s hiding something won’t want to connect emotionally through conversation because he’s afraid if he does, he’ll spill the secret.
So far, your good friends at Cosmo have taken two signs of a healthy relationship—he tells you about his day, and he wants to have sex with you—and turned them into reasons you should be on alert.
Cosmo says: If he’s overly protective of his gadgets, he’s hiding something.
The main way that trysts are found out is through the discovery of incriminating e-mails, IM chats, cell phone texts or bills. So if he’s being unfaithful, he may guard his gadgets or act really defensive when you innocently touch his phone or computer. It should be a giant red flag if he readily gave you passwords in the past, and now he’s more evasive.
If the Patriot Act taught us anything, it’s that the only people who value privacy are terrorists. Remember: If you encounter literally any resistance when trying to suddenly snatch his phone out of his hands, he’s hiding something. And after you so generously pulled out all of his pubic hair last night, too!