by Kelli Collins
Working where I do, I’ve had my fair share of conversations about length; the sort of discussions that start small then grow and grow, with everyone pontificating about their penis preferences. If frank talk about the lap taffy isn’t your bag, feel free to exit the page. No, really, it’s okay. Come back next week for a rousing post about appropriate tea service in Regency romances. We’ll wait for you to exit…
All delicate flowers gone? Good. Now the rest of us can come to grips with an irksome little trait found in nearly all erotica: HUMONGOUS penises. In my experience, an author can forget to mention the hero’s name, but doggone it, everyone’s going to know about his gargantuan, huge, massive, stretched-to-his-navel knob. Nine inches seems to be the most popular length (I’ve seen up to 14. Fourteen!). And did I mention the ubiquitous “velvet-covered steel” texture? But that’s another post…
I think any good penis conversation worth shaking a stiffie at should include some requisite data. So let me just whip this out: A 1995 study published in the Journal of Urology capped the average erect penis at 5.08 inches. Is that masculine scoffing I hear? Perhaps you’d prefer the Kinsey data, still one of the most exhaustive studies on penis size to date. Good ol’ Al has the median one-eyed monster at 6.2 inches. Interesting note: Kinsey’s study has the average African American at 6.3 inches; hardly a ball-busting difference. (One source, ChaCha.com—which seems even more questionable than the ever-questionable Wikipedia—gives black males a generous 7 inches. “It’s twue! It’s twue!”)
But far more interesting to me is the female perspective. For instance, in a 2005 internet survey of more than 50,000 men and women, a whopping 85% of hetero chicks were happy with their man’s size (a positively flaccid 6% considered their man “smaller than average”). Then there’s the highly unscientific and wholly impromptu survey of twelve female friends—those I would have considered the randiest and most likely to be size queens. You could have knocked me over with a penis pump when a surprising eleven said it’s not the size of the bat, but the swing of the stick.
So why the fascination with size in erotic romance when—if my meager research is anything to go by—most women just don’t seem to give a damn? Is it really a fantasy for most readers to be impaled upon a 12-inch love-lever? Is there some romance-writing myth that says royalties will wilt without a substantial schlong? Perhaps authors assume most fans don’t want to read about what they might already have at home. Or is it as simple as, “Hey. It’s fiction…so why not?”
How do female readers feel about the ever-present, bigger-than-average boner? I’m woman enough to admit the very real possibility of screaming in fear at the sight of a 14-inch penis. And guys? Do you snicker at romance heroes’ unrealistic appendages? Or do you perhaps feel—dare we say it?—the slightest bit intimidated by your fictitious counterparts?
These are the questions that keep me up at night. Even after some exhaustive lovin’ from my own humongous, gargantuan, huge, massive man.