Reality TV puts sex on the table

22nd June 2001 at 01:00
THE only sex education we got at our Methodist school was through Miss Crump, who suddenly became both fat and called Mrs Vassmorgenlandt.

When we asked why she was so fat, we were told it was because she had a baby inside her - from which it was presumed she was a cannibal and that it was inadvisable to be left alone with her.

As with most children, we lived in a confused vacuum on sexual matters. When I fell and bruised my coccyx, rumour spread that I'd fallen on my penis, which meant I was gay - news of transsexualism hadn't reached Wolverhampton in 1986 - and from which was further confusedly extrapolated that I touched Melanie Lewin's boobies, which I never.

We needed help, and, loath to ask our parents, turned to the telly for answers. However, then, as now, the only sex you saw on TV was women being raped in car parks or, worse, Magnum PI nuzzling a girl with horizontal hair in a hotel bedroom in Miami. So, at the age of 14, I was resigned to having my tights ripped off in the car park of The Hollybush, sould I ever wish to become a lady.

This is why Big Brother makes me happy for a whole generation of children. At some point all those hot tubs are finally going to pay off, and two contestants are going to "do it". And when they do, it will be the first time any kid will have had access to two normal people having a well-meaning tumble.

Like a decent cashmere sweater for under pound;90, you just can't find nice sex in the shops - anyone doing video research would conclude that jiggery-pokery only ever happens between three people on a kitchen table, and, furthermore, that all women have their welcome mats shaved to look like David Beckham's head.

What an impending relief, then, for a whole generation of children to discover that just two people can do it, in a nice bed, with an unmown front garden, and just the six million people watching.

If all this had happened 20 years earlier, I would never have had that fainting fit when Mrs Vassmorgenlandt said: "Catie, I'm keeping you back for lunch".

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