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A number of years ago, I gave one of my books the subtitle “The Adventures of a Mildly Perverted Young Writer,” and ever since, I’ve been the recipient of quite a few interesting invitations. I’m no longer young, but I am still mildy perverted, though with less energy. Most recently, I got an invitation from a company called Metro Event Planners to attend, for free, a class they were offering called “Sex Tips to Drive Women Wild.”

I decided to accept this offer, thinking I might learn once and for all where the clitoris is, was and has been located since I first lost my virginity twenty-five years ago on December 31, 1981. Of course, I would also learn where the clitoris has been located long before 1981, if I was to regard the history of female genitalia from a less self-centered point of demarcation.

There was a brief period in 1990, when I was twenty-six and read a book on the female orgasm called For Yourself, that I had, momentarily, a firm idea where the clitoris is, but it was some kind of high math, and my mind couldn’t hold onto the information for long. I was like that character, Charlie, in Flowers for Algernon, possessed with great knowledge, but only for a limited time.

So for years, I’ve been pretty sure that the clitoris is this bump I feel at the top, and it seems to please women when I stroke it, but I’m never fully confident that I’m in the exact right place. It’s kind of like that F. Scott Fitzgerald notion that there’s always a better party than the one you’re presently attending. Thus, I often wonder if I’m touching the urethra or a swelling in the labia, and just by chance happen to be brushing the clitoris, and that’s why the young lady feels good. Who knows? Also, whenever I perform oral sex it’s usually quite dark and I can never see what the hell is going on down there. And then when the lights are on, which is rare, I tend to close my eyes and just let my tongue communicate my ardor.

I decided to accept this offer, thinking I might learn once and for all where the clitoris is, was and has been located since I first lost my virginity twenty-five years.

You see, I’m something of a gentleman, even if I once labeled myself perverted, and it never seems quite proper to stare, like a stamp collector, at your lover’s vagina. Somehow it’s not respectful. So I sort of treat the vagina like a solar eclipse, and just try to glimpse it from an angle. I do like unabashedly gazing at a woman’s bush when she’s standing up and we’re getting dressed in the morning. I’ve always been more of a Playboy kind of guy as opposed to being a Hustler sort of fellow. Unfortunately almost all bushes seem to have disappeared. I don’t know if it’s Chernobyl or some other ecological disaster, but I haven’t seen pubic hair on a woman in years. Well, that’s not entirely true. There are a few bushes left, but not many.

The sex class was held in a large building in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan. I had been directed to go to the sixth floor and to tell the receptionist that I was there for the Metro Planners course.

The sixth floor, it turned out, was in the business of renting studios to various dance troupes. In the lobby area, when I arrived, there were about a dozen women in tights flitting about, and there were three African men carrying drums. I wondered if I was in the right place. I approached the receptionist — a young, disinterested blonde.

“I’m here for the Metro Planners class,” I said.

“Take a seat,” she said, deeply bored. She was staring into the blue glow of her computer screen. “Someone will come find you.”

I squeezed past some sexy girl dancers, took a seat on a battered couch and wondered, as a dancer bent over to stretch, if this was the right kind of place for men who needed sexual help to be taking a class. A musical-theater group came out of a studio, and some of them were still singing a showtune. It was all very festive. An adorable brunette carrying a clipboard then stood in front of me: “Are you Jonathan Ames?” she asked.

“It depends,” I said.

“I recognized you from one of your books,” she said, smiling. “I’m Blaire Allison. I run Metro Planners. I’m the person who wrote to you. There will be two others taking the class with you, so you won’t be all alone.”

“Are you teaching the class?” I asked not without hope — I thought she was awfully cute.

“No, one of our erotic educators will be leading the class,” she said.

“Oh,” I said, trying to hide my disappointment.

“I’ll come back for you in about five minutes; we’ll start at eight.”

“Okay,” I said, and she disappeared down the long hallway.

Then a man in a dark suit, wearing a black wig, approached the desk. He had yellow coloring and noble features. As a bald man, I am an expert at spotting wigs, which, as in this case, give themselves away by the manner in which they ride up their owner’s neck. He was a handsome fellow, but the wig was a mistake. Nevertheless, I can appreciate the desperation and the loss of judgment that losing one’s hair can cause. For years, I had a comb-over, which I was in denial about, until one day I attacked my head with a pair of clippers like a prison guard working over a new inmate. This man looked around the crowded lobby, and then mumbled to the blonde, trying to affect discretion: “I’m here for the eight o’clock class.”

“Which class?” asked the blonde, not taking her eyes off her computer screen.

“The eight o’clock class,” the man mumbled again.

“Which eight o’clock class?” exhaled the blonde with annoyance.

I could see the man with the wig faltering. He had forgotten the necessary password: Metro Planners. And he certainly didn’t want to tell this young girl that he was there for the sex class. He muttered again, uselessly, “The class. . .”

“Which class?” she repeated. I couldn’t take it. This was torture for me and for the man in the wig. I had to jump in and save the fellow.

“He’s in the Metro Planners class,” I said, which could have been wrong, but I was sure I was right — the wig, the embarrassed eyes, I had seen these exact symptoms in my fellow men in peep shows before Mayor Giuliani destroyed Times Square.

“Have a seat,” the girl said to him.

Shortly thereafter, Blaire Allison came out and quickly intuited who my classmates were (the third student was a happy, curly-haired youth in his mid-twenties). She led us down the hallway of dance studios until we came to our own little box-like room.

We men sat in three folding chairs, and in front of us stood our smiling, cute, red-headed teacher. Blaire took a seat at the back of the room.

“I’m Heather,” said our instructor, sitting down on a folding chair. She was wearing black slacks, a purple, frilly tuxedo top and low heels. “I’m bisexual,” she continued, “and, of course, I’m a woman, so I’m coming at this from two places of experience. So I just want to commend you. It takes a lot of courage to be here, and it takes a lot of courage in the bedroom.”

She seemed a little nervous. She was blushing somewhat — she had fair skin to go with her red hair. She said, “Can each of you give us your name or a made-up name, and why you like to go down on women?” She looked at me to start, and I was a little taken aback by how quickly we were jumping into things, so I idiotically said, “Did you ask why we like to go down on women?”

“Yes,” she said, smiling.

“Well, my name is Jonathan,” I said, suddenly brave, “and I like to go down on women because I like to be lost in there, just disappear in there, and I like to make women feel good.” I hoped that Blaire, sitting somewhere behind me, was taking note.

“I’m Craig,” said the curly-haired boy, following me, “and I like to go down on women for the same reason that Jonathan does.”

“I’m Aresh,” said the bewigged man, and he stopped there, showing some self-respect, unlike Craig and myself.

The first thing Heather covered was the breast. Blaire gave each of us green balloons. I had trouble tying the knot on my balloon and felt embarrassed. I’ve always struggled with balloons. I nearly asked Craig to tie my balloon for me, but then at the last moment I rallied and got the thing knotted.

I air-sucked my balloon, and Heather said, “You have to practice,” and I whined, “I don’t like the taste of balloons,” so she didn’t press the issue.

Heather demonstranted how to stroke the breast using her balloon. It was fairly basic info, though she went on to suggest licking all around the breast and the areola before sucking on the nipple, explaining that this felt good for a woman. Then she wanted us to suck our balloons to practice our “suckling.” I air-sucked my balloon, and Heather said, “You have to practice,” and I whined, “I don’t like the taste of balloons,” so she didn’t press the issue. Aresh and Craig, hearing my protest, took their mouths off their balloons. I felt bad that I was leading a small rebellion.

After the breast, we moved down below. We were presented with a diagram of a vagina, and I was happy to see that the clitoris was located just where I thought it was: a little bump at the top!

Heather told us that we were to first to “pet” the whole area — hips, legs, belly. “Then, after petting, the next is swirling,” said Heather, indicating a motion that we might use with our fingers on the clitoris. “But keep the hood down,” she warned. She had mentioned the clitoral hood while showing us the diagram, and indicated now that one should “not lift the hood,” that the clitoris was too sensitive to be exposed this way. This was very good information. I had known there was a hood there, had heard about it, but I had always mistakenly thought that the clit and the hood were joined or something. I didn’t know that it could be lifted, like the hood of a car. Knowledge!

After swirling, Heather told us that there was “good old finger fucking,” and that each woman was different as to how many fingers she might like inside her. In fact, throughout the class, Heather kept reminding us that all women are different. This echoed what a friend of mine had told me one night in a bar. Before taking the class, I had asked her the most common mistake that a man makes in bed, and she launched into a passionate, somewhat intoxicated speech: “I don’t like a guy who keeps doing the same thing that must have worked with some other girl — some Cindy! Some kind of Vulcan Death Pinch that he’s developed. Every girl is a new map. Girls are like mini-golf courses. There are lots of holes. There’s a windmill and a village. We’re not all some Cindy!”

Heather went on to tell us that for most women the G-spot is two-to-three inches inside, and that the best way to get a woman to ejaculate was to stimulate her G-spot.

“When a woman ejaculates, what is it that comes out of her?” I asked.

“There’s a build-up of fluids,” she said.

“It’s not urine?” I asked.


I didn’t go into it, but one time a girl ejaculated on my face, and I wasn’t sure what the hell had happened, but I had liked it — it was warm and lovely.

Feeling talkative, I then said, “Can we go back to the clit a moment?” Heather nodded her assent. “Well,” I said, “a lot of times when I’m manually pleasing a woman, my finger slips off what I think is the clit. What should I do?”

“Try to keep your hand grounded on her pubic bone,” Heather said, which didn’t fully satisfy my concern — my finger would still slip even if my hand is grounded — but Heather pressed on to the next subject. “Let’s move on to the ladies’ ultimate pleasure,” she said, “but while you’re having the box lunch, don’t forget the rest of her.”

I didn’t know why oral sex was the ultimate pleasure, when some women might prefer intercourse, but I kept quiet. Heather explained that while we went down on a woman, we should continue to touch her with our hands. She also said that at first we should tease the woman with our tongue. “Don’t act like a heat-seeking missile, going directly for the clit,” she warned.

“I can’t help it,” said Craig, good-naturedly.

Heather then told us about licking the labia up and down, and after we did that we should also suck each labia. “Inner labia can stretch and swell,” she said. “They’re kind of like the testicles. But just suck one labia at a time, otherwise she’ll close up. As a girl gets more excited, she wants to open up.”

“Why does sucking on two labia at once close her up?” I asked.

This, upon reflection, was an ignorant question — to suck on two labia at the same time is like drawing a curtain across a stage. Heather didn’t use this metaphor, but with simple language she explained to me that getting two labia together at once would close off the opening to the vagina.


At this point, Blaire handed out halved peaches, and we all practiced licking them, which I took to much better than the balloon. For about a minute, Craig, Aresh, Heather and I all practiced licking the labia and licking the clit. “This is a good peach,” I said, breaking the silence. Then I asked, “What about the girl, who after you’ve been down there a long time, can’t seem to come. Any advice?”

“Oh, yeah,” said Craig, knowing full well what I was talking about.

“In that case, you might want to lift the hood,” said Heather, “but you really have to ask permission first so that she’s ready.”

After that, Heather wound things up with a brief mention about using dental dams, and that when playing with food, like syrup or fruit, that you should not get these items in the vagina because the sugar can cause yeast infections. She also mentioned that you can suck on an ice cube and blow on the clit, but “don’t blow air into the vagina, you can blow bad things up there.” Being on the safety-conscious side, I appreciated these bits of advice.

The class was over. We hadn’t covered intercourse, but I had learned a great deal. Blaire collected our balloons and peaches, and we three men said goodbye to the ladies, and walked sheepishly down the hall, past lots of sexy dancers, to the elevator.

Alone in the elevator, I engaged in some locker-room banter so that we wouldn’t feel like total losers — men who had to take a sex-class, and then slink past young girls in leotards.

“Heather kept talking about vaginas as if you can see them, but I always make love in the dark,” I said.

“Me, too,” said Aresh.

I plunged my middle digit in about two inches, counting off the distance with my finger along the inside of the young lady’s vagina the way you march out the steps between your car and a fire-hydrant.

“So I don’t think I’ll ever find that hood, let alone figure out how to lift one.” Aresh and Craig absorbed this bit of news soberly. I continued in a more upbeat tone, really playing the class clown. “I didn’t say it when we were in there, when I asked about female ejaculation, but one time a girl did ejaculate on me and I nearly drowned, but I liked it.”

Both men laughed. “So what did you guys think, overall, about the class?” I asked.

“Most of this comes naturally,” said Aresh with wisdom, “but it’s good to learn a few things.”

“My girlfriend took the blowjob class that they offer women,” Craig said, “so she wanted me to take this class.”

“Only fair,” I said. “And now you can go home and practice on each other.”

Then we were out on the street. And what do you do after you take a sex class togther? Exchange numbers? Go for a drink? No. You shake hands goodbye and quickly disperse, staggering into the night as anonymously as possible.

The next time I made love I really tried to put into practice what I had learned, and I have to say the results were excellent. I licked the areola and the whole breast before hungrily attacking the nipple like a starving child, and the young lady in question seemed quite pleased.

On the oral-sex front, I then made a concerted effort to lick the labia, which was something I’ve been guilty of neglecting in the past, and again the results were quite good. I also plunged my middle digit in about two inches, counting off the distance with my finger along the inside of the young lady’s vagina the way you march out the steps between your car and a fire-hydrant. I may have actually located the G-spot, if I’m judge to by the gasps of pleasure that were elicited. And at opportune moments, recalling what Heather said about women wanting to open up, I applied gentle pressure to the inner thighs, spreading the legs further — this seemed to be a good tactic.

Nevertheless, all this was conducted in the dark, and I couldn’t really see what I was doing. I fumbled with my finger on the clitoris, and felt very nervous about lifting the hood by accident, now that I knew it could be lifted. I wonder how many hoods I’d accidently jarred over the years. A chilling thought.

Well, I didn’t have to lift this young lady’s hood. After attending to her labia and tapping her G-spot, I licked her bump, which I was 90% certain was the clitoris, and after about ten minutes she had a resounding orgasm. There was no ejaculation, but there was a lot of leg-quivering and moaning, as well as the well-articulated phrase, “I’m coming!” which seemed to certify the job as well-done. When she was finished, she pulled me to her tender breast, where I listened to her happy, beating heart, and I felt like both a good student and a good lover. For one night, anyway.


Jonathan Ames is the author of six books, including Wake Up, Sir! and What’s Not to Love? He is the winner of a Guggenheim Fellowship and the loser of an amateur boxing match in which he fought as The Herring Wonder. To see more of his work, visit


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