Let's Talk About Sex #1: Can Blueberry Muffins Cause Erections?
I know that students have lots of interesting thoughts going through their minds when they listen to my lectures. That's why I have them fill out daily evaluations asking them to share their reactions to the lectures, tell me what they were thinking about, and ask me any random questions. My students teach me new things every day and I love the opportunity to briefly see the world through their eyes. As Phil Collins once said, "in learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn." I spend the first couple of minutes of each class talking about some of the evaluations and answering their random questions.
The other day I was lecturing about male reproductive anatomy and I discussed the physiology of erections. I explained how the penis can become engorged from many forms of stimulation, including visual, tactile, auditory, olfactory, or cognitive. Some guys might get wood listening to Beyonce, while others might require the sight of a naked partner or even a partner's smell. One student shared that years ago she had a friend who told her he got erections when he ate blueberry muffins. She always thought he was joking. Turns out, he might have been telling the truth! Maybe the blueberry muffins somehow got paired with sex and he got hard whenever he thought about (or ate) one (it's not the first time a guy has gotten off on baked goods - recall the apple pie in the movie American Pie). In any event, there were tons of great comments and questions about men and their reproductive anatomy. Students wondered if a guy could get a blood clot in his penis (it's possible) or whether he could "break" his penis (you can seriously bruise it by slamming it into a wall or the perineum - I don't recommend trying this). I don't have time to answer all the questions in my classroom, so I've decided I'm going to start blogging about them so that you'll get a glimpse of what's on the minds of college students taking a human sexuality class. It's always an adventure!