From March 21, 2018
Until I saw one irl, I thought vaginas were horizontal.
And before you get all weirded out… no, this isn’t an embarrassing tale about losing my virginity, nor is it a horrible story of sexual abuse. It is a tale of childhood innocence.
Growing up and learning, you start with nothing, and then you are given pieces of information and must make connections based on what you already know. As a child of 6, I very correctly knew little of the female anatomy, but I, also, was very curious.
I knew from the playground, four facts about boys vs. girls:
Fact 1: All girls were plagued by a contagion known as cooties to which they themselves were immune, but, if contracted by a boy, resulted in an incurable, and often deadly, condition. Luckily, I had been vaccinated.
Fact 2: Girls were born on Venus, and boys were born on Mars. Though, I hadn’t worked out how we all ended up on Earth.
Fact 3: All boys were destined to make the interplanetary jump again to Jupiter to get more stupider; whereas, girls were meant to stay here on Earth and go to college to get more knowledge.
Fact 4: Boys had penises and girls had vaginas.
Working with this little information, I began to deduce the distinction between male vs. female genitalia.
I knew what a penis was. I had one. It’s what boys used to pee out of. Therefore, I concluded that a vagina must be what girls used to pee out of. I also hypothesized that this appendage must be in same relative area on girls as it was on boys.
The rest of my knowledge came from formal interviews with classmates through which I learned that the vagina was not an appendage at all, but a second mouth from which girls peed out of.
So, in my mind, I now had a very clear image of what a vagina was. It was a second mouth, located in the lower pelvic region, from which a girl peed out of.
But, what exactly did it look like?
Did it have teeth?
Could it chew?
I had to know. My curiosity was insatiable.
So one day, on the playground, I went around asking the girls in my class if they would show me their vaginas. This tactic resulted in the majority of them fleeing in fear and crying. But one particularly entrepreneurial classmate saw this as an opportunity, and she struck a deal, “I’ll show you mine, if you show me yours.”
It sounded like a fair trade to me, so off to the woods we went (looking back on it, my elementary school teachers did a poor job chaperoning).
“You go first,” my business savvy classmate said, and so I unzipped my pants and exposed myself to her. She seemed pleased.
“Now you,” I said. So, she lifted up her dress and showed me her goods. I was less impressed.
“Where’s the teeth?”