Back to School
On November 6, 2008, the urbanist Mike Davis delivered a lecture at the University of Washington. (Read his books City of Quartz and Planet of Slums—they will make you a better person.) The lecture was about how humans had seriously fucked up the environment. But there was hope. What could save our world? "Just look around you," said Davis. "The University of Washington is a small utopian city that economizes on residential space, they are called dorms, within public environments for learning, research, performance, and even human reproduction. Its dense physical shell, which is situated on a modest but beautiful campus footprint with multiple public transit links, offers the potential to achieve radical per-capita reductions in energy use, waste, and carbon emissions that would be impossible within a sprawling suburb of the same population... Ivy, by the way, is good insulator."
The university campus is the ideal society. Even more than that, it is the most human society possible. We are the learning animal. Our brains are huge and develop very slowly. Chimp children, for example, mature much faster than human children. After two or so years, the chimp stops asking questions. The chimp just wants to get on with life. We, on the other hand, can't stop learning, we extend childish wonder deep into adulthood, which transformed us into the book-reading, history-learning, formula-memorizing ape.
And fucking is at the center of the student utopia. (Davis incorrectly called it "human reproduction." Students do not fuck to reproduce anything; they fuck just for the pleasure of it.) Now, here is something you may not know: The human male has a large penis. Yes! Even the smallest penis on a human is larger than the largest penis on a gorilla—the erect penis of an adult gorilla is about 1.5 inches. Why is the human so well equipped? The theory is this: Early human communities maintained peace by transferring competition between males for females to a competition of sperm for the egg. So what a male needed wasn't muscles like a gorilla (there is no peace between adult male gorillas), but a penis that could penetrate deeper than everyone else's. Right after a woman fucked you, she fucked another guy, and his and your sperm competed for the prize. Everyone got laid, and the rest was left to the sperm. (You can read more about this sperm theory in two excellent books: Sex at Dawn by Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jethá, and Dazzle Gradually: Reflections on the Nature of Nature by Lynn Margulis and Dorion Sagan.)
The point is this: Your body was designed for multiple sexual partnerships. The campus has lots of potential partners. This is utopia.