Having Your “Cake” and Eating it Like Groceries (Or Why All Your Friends Are All Suddenly Talking About Anilingus, Anal, and Butt Stuff)

America’s appetite for sex is evolving. No need for fear, this is actually good news for those looking to explore those new and exciting kinks that they’ve held a long-standing secret curiosity about. And here’s the biggest news: those formerly taboo ideas like anal sex and anilingus are now on the menu with a vengeance. And once they take the plunge, people aren’t looking back.

Think that backdoor play is a modern phenomenon? Think again. Long before Beyonce’s rear view turned heads and Nicki Minaj’s anaconda-enticing derriere hit the airwaves, none other than the Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote a song entitled “Leck mich im Arsch;” literally translated to “Lick me in the Ass.” That’s right, nearly 300 years before Marnie had her ass eaten for all the world to see on HBO’s Girls, Mozart requested us all to get familiar with the business end of his rectum.

So what took us so long to catch up? After all, between Mozart’s clever lyrics of “Lick my ass nicely, lick it nice and clean,” and the decade and a half or so ago when Charlotte confessed to salad tossing on Sex and the City, talk about rimming, anal, eating cake and various other butt-stuff related fun was relegated to hushed whispers-nowhere near the cultural embrace it’s seeing today.

Perhaps porn star Asa Akira best (inadvertently) hit the nail on the head when she declared in an interview that “ass is the new pussy.” Culturally, that says a whole lot about what kinds of ass play people have seen as appropriate and what isn’t. Keep in mind that, traditionally, anilingus has been viewed as so downright dirty, naughty, and sinful that even Kinsey never studied it.

But if the bum is really just a new version of the vagina, then that would make the act of having your salad tossed one of innate feminization. Setting aside the usual hang-ups about butts, this adds an additional element: the fact that they are subconsciously intertwined with gender and sexuality. In other words, through the heteronormative lens, anilingus slowly became an “okay” thing to do among the general consensus-provided that the person on the receiving end is a female.

Here’s the thing, though, folks: like so many gendered stereotypes and societal “rules,” it’s BS.

Set aside this ultimately homophobic and misogynist take on rimming, and the idea that ass play somehow makes you gay and you’re left with the truth. There is a high concentration of nerve endings at play down there, and having a tongue between your cheeks just feels downright good, no matter who you are or which way you happen to lean.

In fact, a 2008 study of nearly 1500 heterosexual men, found that among those who had performed anal sex on a female partner, both giving and receiving anilingus was actually fairly common place, with over 24% admitting to performing it on their partner and over 15% said they had enjoyed being on the receiving end. Consider that those numbers are most likely highly underreported, as tends to be the case with cultural taboos. Make no mistake, attitudes are changing, but rimming for men still lies in “iffy” territory for many. It still stands to reason that more men than ever are licking, being licked, and wishing they were getting more tongue.

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