Dollars and Sex Retrospective

Today’s post is the one hundredth post for Dollars and Sex and to mark this occasion I thought I would provide a retrospective of the fifteen most popular posts to have appeared here over the past ten months. What is interesting about this list is how diverse the topics are--from online dating to prostitution to monogamy to faking orgasms. Dollars and Sex readers certainly have a wide range of interests!

1. How Promiscuous Are You? Take Our Online TestThe test itself is no longer on the page but the post is still fun to read. If you want to see the results from the tens of thousands who did take the test you can see them here.

2. Sex in ChinaThe Chinese google the search terms “sex in China” a lot. The only possible explanation as to why they search that term so often (and, as a result, end up reading my posts) is that they just don’t have sex often enough.

3. Does Sleeping Around Make People Happier?This post was very popular with Christian websites who were pleased with the results that the happiness maximizing number of sex partners is exactly one.

4. Confessions of a College Pimp This post is a word-for-word transcript of a conversation I had with a man who had pimped his way through university.  It inspired others who had done the same to write me to explain that they were not nearly as mean as this guy.

5. When it comes to Faking Orgasms Who’s Kidding Whom?This posts was so popular with readers we didn’t fake the pleasure it gave us.

6. The Dating Surplus for Chinese Women Much of the popularity of this post, which is a letter from a student who is spending a year in China, came from his use of the phrase "I would rather cry in the back of a BMW than laugh on the back of a bicycle."

7. Free Porn Lowers Rape Rates Apparently the Google search terms “rape” and “porn” are very popular. I don’t judge how my readers arrive on the page. I am just glad they are here.

8. An Online Porn Traffic Surge in Red States? Republicans apparently found a little time to read this page in the days following the U.S. midterm elections despite their increased demand for internet porn (or maybe because of it!).

9. What Explains the Lesbian Wage Premium? This is my most cited post (including in the New York Times) which led to an internet furor over why lesbians are paid more than other female workers.

10. Why Aren't Porn Stars Paid More? Not all my readers agreed with the use of the word “star” in this context, but whenever we talk about pay in the sex trades someone has an opinion on how much a worker’s time is worth.

11. Online Dating Sites Creating “Beauty Inflation”Anna North at Jezebel wrote a post on this one furthering the debate both on and offline about how online dating skews our expectations in romance.

12. Sex in College: It's a Buyer's Market Good post for anyone whose teenage son is refusing to do his homework.

13. Prostitution Paradox: Regulating Brothels Can Spread Disease One thing that sex workers and I can agree on is that there can be too much regulation of the sex trade, but probably for different reasons.

14. Education May Explain Why Rich Nations Prefer Monogamy This post took a shot at explaining why we have institutionalized monogamy in rich nations and made it onto the front page of the UK’s Daily Mail.

15. Do Women Really Value Income Over Looks in a Mate? My very first Dollars and Sex post and still a favorite with readers.  Who doesn’t want to know what matters more – good looks or money?

​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
  • Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Keep reading Show less

Why the ocean you know and love won’t exist in 50 years

Can sensitive coral reefs survive another human generation?

  • Coral reefs may not be able to survive another human decade because of the environmental stress we have placed on them, says author David Wallace-Wells. He posits that without meaningful changes to policies, the trend of them dying out, even in light of recent advances, will continue.
  • The World Wildlife Fund says that 60 percent of all vertebrate mammals have died since just 1970. On top of this, recent studies suggest that insect populations may have fallen by as much as 75 percent over the last few decades.
  • If it were not for our oceans, the planet would probably be already several degrees warmer than it is today due to the emissions we've expelled into the atmosphere.
Keep reading Show less

Vikings unwittingly made their swords stronger by trying to imbue them with spirits

They didn't know it, but the rituals of Iron Age Scandinavians turned their iron into steel.

Culture & Religion
  • Iron Age Scandinavians only had access to poor quality iron, which put them at a tactical disadvantage against their neighbors.
  • To strengthen their swords, smiths used the bones of their dead ancestors and animals, hoping to transfer the spirit into their blades.
  • They couldn't have known that in so doing, they actually were forging a rudimentary form of steel.
Keep reading Show less

Health care: Information tech must catch up to medical marvels

Michael Dowling, Northwell Health's CEO, believes we're entering the age of smart medicine.

Photo: Tom Werner / Getty Images
Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • The United States health care system has much room for improvement, and big tech may be laying the foundation for those improvements.
  • Technological progress in medicine is coming from two fronts: medical technology and information technology.
  • As information technology develops, patients will become active participants in their health care, and value-based care may become a reality.
Keep reading Show less