A – Z of Sex

Chris Donovan

From “Aphrodisiac” To “Xylophone”, here’s your alphabetical guide to all things sexual (okay, we made ‘xylophone’ up - but it caught your attention, right?)

A is for ABSTINENCE. The safest way to avoid getting pregnant or contracting a sexually-transmitted disease is to abstain from having sexual intercourse entirely. It’s not a whole lot of fun, admittedly, which is why it is not very popular. A is also for APHRODISIAC – meaning any food, drink or other thing that enhances libido and improves sex. Bananas, avocados, chocolate and chillies are said to be especially proficient in this regard. But they also say that power is the ultimate aphrodisiac. We say: try whispering in someone’s ear just how divine and sexy they look...


B is for BDSM. A combination of the abbreviations B/D (Bondage and Discipline), D/S (Dominance and Submission) and S/M (Sadism and Masochism), BDSM is a catch-all phrase covering a wide range of non-normative sexual activities, including mild spanking and other role-playing activities. Formerly an underground interest, the widespread success of movies such as Secretary and Fifty Shades of Grey has done much to popularise BDSM in recent times.


C is for CONTRACEPTION. Any method used to prevent pregnancy. These include condoms, the pill and the cap. While no form of contraception is totally safe, some are more effective than others. C is also for CONSENT. Before having intercourse with a partner, make sure that you have their willing consent.


D is for DREAMS. We have them all the time. Erotic dreams, that is. Sometimes we remember them. Sometimes we don’t. Often, they involve us doing things that we really, really, really would like to do with unexpected, interesting and even hugely exciting people. But we haven’t. Yet.  D is also for DILDO. A sex toy, usually explicitly phallic in appearance, used for vaginal penetration or other activities during masturbation or with sex partners.  Dildos come in all shapes and sizes, and are made from a variety of materials from rubber and silicone to glass and steel.


E is for EROTICA. Literature or art intended to arouse sexual desire. Not quite the same thing as pornography, which is ubiquitous on the internet, erotica uses the power of suggestion to greater effect, with a strong emphasis on sexual fantasies.  Check the work of Anais Nin, if you want to be impressed.

F is for FOREPLAY.  Any kind of sexual activity leading up to, but not including, full intercourse. These activities can include kissing, fingering, oral sex and masturbation.  Females usually need longer foreplay than males to become aroused. Thus the expression, “Men are like microwaves, women are like ovens.”

G is for G-SPOT. An area within a woman’s vagina that will create a lot of sexual pleasure for her if it can be located by her partner. G  is also for GPS. If only there was a GPS to help men find the g-spot, the world would be a far happier place!


H is for HORNY. The state of being sexually aroused. Particularly difficult to deal with if you’re practicing abstinence (see A). H is also for HOT PRESS. Be warned: reading this publication can sometimes make you horny. Perhaps you should take a quick walk?  


I is for the INTERNET. Possibly the greatest informational tool ever invented by humankind, the internet is basically awash with cute cat pictures, bad blogs and all conceivable forms of sexual activity. The world wide web is a very sticky place indeed so, if you’re chatting to strangers online, be very careful what personal information you give away.

J is for [Ron] JEREMY.  Nicknamed “The Hedgehog”, portly American porn star Ron Jeremy is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records for ‘Most Appearances in Adult Films’ (well over 2,000 in which he has performed, and an additional 285 that he directed). This is despite a joke in the adult film industry that “the kinkier acts some actresses would not perform were bestiality, sado-masochism and sex with Jeremy.”  

K is for KLEPTOLAGNIA. A sexual form of kleptomania, this is the state of being aroused by the act of theft. If you do find yourself involved with a kleptolagniac, it’s generally best to always go back to their place. 

L is for LUBRICATION. A slippery fluid or gel used for certain sex acts, especially those that involve penetration. Some oil-based lubricants can damage the condom so be sure to use water-based ones if you’re using protection, and always read the instructions carefully.  

M is for MORNING AFTER PILL. Taken up to 72 hours after unprotected sex, the morning after pill prevents unwanted pregnancy. In an ideal world you wouldn't need to take it, so be sure to always plan your contraception effectively, especially if you are inclined to have casual sex.  

N is for NIPPLES. The raised bits of skin on a woman’s (or man’s) breasts, nipples are an oft-neglected area when it comes to foreplay (see F). They can also be hugely controversial when publicly exposed on a female. Just ask Janet Jackson. 

O is for ORGASM. Not always reached, but orgasm is the Everest of sexual pleasure for any man, woman or transgender. Microwaves tend to produce more orgasms than ovens, but we're trying to change that! (see F). O is for OBJECTOPHILIA. A sexual attraction towards inanimate objects. Google ‘woman who married the Eiffel Tower’ for more.

P is for PORNOGRAPHY. If you don’t know what pornography is then you’re most definitely not on the internet (see I).

Q is for QUEER. Used to be a term of abuse used towards homosexuals. They cleverly turned it into a source of pride. On a separate note, Q is for Q magazine. Nothing to do with sex, but simply not as good as Hot Press.   

R is for RELATIONSHIPS. Which are at the heart of most sexual activity. Some are short-term. Others are long-term. They all involve people. The best thing to do is enjoy them – and hope for the best. The latest may just turn out to be the longest. If you’re lucky...  

S is for STI. The very last thing anyone wants is a Sexually Transmitted Infection or Disease. So if you are not practicing abstinence, then use a condom. S is for SIN. People used to insist that sex before marriage was a sin. But nowadays, we know better than that...


T is for THRUSH. A small or medium-sized songbird, typically having a brown breast, spotted breast and loud song. Otherwise a mild but very scratchy sexual disease. You decide. 

U is for UNDERWEAR. One of the great things about life and sexual attraction is that you simply never know when lightning will strike. So, whatever sex you are, it’s always best to wear clean underwear. Even if you don’t get unexpectedly laid, you’ll be well dressed in the event that you get run over by a bus.


V is for Vagina Monologues. A theatrical presentation, written by Eve Ensler and delivered by a cast of women. The episodic ‘play’ dealt with sex, love, menstruation, masturbation, birth and orgasm, among other subjects, emphasising the vagina as the ultimate embodiment of female individuality..  

W is for WITHDRAWAL METHOD. A notoriously unreliable method of contraception whereby the male pulls his erect penis out of the vagina just before ejaculation - Not a good idea! W is for WEAR. Wear a condom, you idiot!

X is for X-Rated. An old cinema rating. Which is more than a little dated in 2016. Nowadays most things seem to be XXX rated.

Y is for Y-FRONTS (see U for ‘Underwear’).

Z is for ZZZZZZZZ. Which is what happens to most of us after a heart-stopping, totally immersive, hugely orgasmic and thoroughly satisfying sexual experience.    


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