Premature Ejaculation: Bedroom Faux-Pas or a driver in the evolution of language?
Driven by an unprecedented increase in the prevalence of premature ejaculation in and around our flat I was compelled to expose its true nature. Rather than being an embarrassing “problem” which men to this day struggle to overcome, I see it as a prime example of antagonistic coevolution in action.
For many years, men have been embarrassed and ashamed by premature ejaculation, or “temporally truncated sliming” as it has become known amongst the scientific community. However, there may be an underlying evolutionary background to this phenomenon that should give our hasty brethren cause for celebration.
Our primate ancestors lived in groups to decrease the likelihood of predation, and while this group structure provided safety in numbers it led to another problem: a monopoly whereby the burliest male individuals would have preferential access to females in heat, and prevented their more feeble counterparts from dipping their wicks. There would appear to be two options for subordinate males in this scenario: adopt Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson’s patented micro, mini and mega burl routine (densely packed steroid cycles) and outsize their rivals, or find a way to subvert the system.
In a move that would have huge implications for our species, subordinate males decided not to challenge the dominant males physically. Instead, they went behind their backs and chose to only attempt to woo females when the burly males were sleeping or fighting each other. This so called “sneaky mating” opened up a whole new world of possibility for them: no longer would they have to sit in a corner watching coital relations and furiously tugging, now they could join in too. Presumably some males still preferred the voyeur approach, but alas, scientific study on this subject is at best sparse.
However, the downside to the sneaky mating approach was that there was a very limited time window in which they could hope to press home their advantage. One can sympathise, as the majority of males to this day can testify that inadequate preparation time (as well as a variety of other factors) can lead to the necessity for “thumbing in a softy”, an unpleasant experience for all involved. In addition to this, their chopping efforts were further limited by time and noise constraints. To avoid detection and subsequent reprisal from the burl kings, they would have had to initiate and complete their penetration in a matter of moments.
Those males who were able to spread their love in the most timely manner had an evolutionary advantage over their longer lasting (but equally feeble) cohorts, as they were able to mate more frequently and without fear of disturbing and aggravating the dominant individuals. In the same way that successful fish gutters in Chinese factories become quicker and more efficient at removing the gooey bits from our salt-loving aquatic friends, “sneaky” males became more and more efficient at distributing their seed to females in the small time window afforded to them. This is a common phenomenon in the natural world, and is known as social evolution.
Unfortunately it wasn’t all sunshine and roses for our quick-fire heroes, and the process of evolution, which had initially smiled upon them, twisted back on itself faster than George Osborne pulling off his latest tax credit U-turn. While the sub-dominant males were busy patting themselves on the beaks and congratulating themselves on their new found success, the females were becoming less and less satisfied with both the performance of their partners and the suffering genetic quality of their offspring.
At this time, the primitive grunts that constituted communication between individual apes was not sufficient to pass on detailed information about the intimate capabilities of a male. However, in the same way that feebler males became more efficient at unloading, females gradually became better and better at communicating with each other to lambaste the lack of enjoyment they were receiving from their new partners. Over time, grunting gave way to more nuanced dialogue, allowing the specifics of intimacy to be examined and re-examined, often with catastrophic long term consequences for the most efficient among the sneaky community. The worm had turned, and efficient copulation was no longer considered a blessing but was now a stigma associated with poor quality males, in much the same way that mullet wearers were rebranded after its zenith had ended in the late 1980s.
This example represents another skirmish in the evolutionary arms race between the sexes, and should in time be recognised as being as central to the concept of antagonistic coevolution as, in happier times, Harry Kane once was to England’s Euro 2016 aspirations.
The take home message for the speedier performers amongst the modern male population is this: do not bemoan the apparent “predicament” you find yourselves in; instead, rejoice at the fact that your ancestors struggled through adversity and physical abuse to become the most efficient sprog producing machines in existence. You are perfect examples of the way in which humans have adapted and continue to evolve to challenging conditions, and find yourself in the heady company of such notable luminaries (if popular culture is to be believed) as Justin Bieber, Kurt Busch and Missy Elliott’s anonymous lover referenced in her infamous song “One Minute Man”.
*Please note that none of this article is based on any real science. This was merely written for the purpose of encouraging a healthy, and preferably long lasting, debate on what is undoubtedly one of society’s most underdiscussed topics.
Picture credit to: https://www.herbalhard.com/pages/early_ejaculation