Imagine that alongside independent cafés, and large chains like Starbucks and Pret, there’s an even bigger coffee company: CupHub, where you can get your caffeine fix for free. The only catch is that instead of having a dedicated team of baristas, paid by the company, basically anyone can pop behind the counter and make your coffee for you. Instead of buying coffee to serve you, CupHub relies on people dumping coffee at the entrance to their shops. Sometimes this coffee is legit, other times it’s stolen or tainted in some way. CupHub does its best to try and make sure it isn’t, but inevitably some bad coffee and bad people will slip through the net. Still: free coffee! Woo!
Do me a favour, yeah? Next time a straight couple tells you they’re getting married, would you mind turning to the gentleman in the pairing and asking him: “So… are you planning to keep your surname?” Go on, I dare you. I double-dare you. Ask him, in a cheery tone, whether he plans to take his wife’s name. Watch his reaction, then pop back here and let me know in the comments how that went.
This might sound weird, but I’m actually pretty sick of talking about consent. As a fan of sex, what I really want to talk about is desire. Want. Lust. Need. Craving. But I can’t talk about all those cool things without also having to explain the basics of consent. Because some pricks still cannot drag themselves over this, the lowest possible bar. Consent! Fuck my life! It’s the most boring sexual basic! Consent is vital, of course, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t also dull. Like that bit at the start of a cupcake recipe where they tell you what temperature you should set your oven to – it’s not the most interesting part of the recipe, but without it you can’t make cakes.
I’ve always been envious of my boyfriend’s uniform. It’s not a literal uniform, you understand, he isn’t a firefighter or an airline pilot. His ‘uniform’ is just a basic outfit that he’s able to wear no matter what the day: jeans, t-shirt, hoodie. In the summer: shorts, t-shirt, shirt. On the off-chance that we’re invited to a wedding, he owns one single suit. He never has to scrabble through his wardrobe trying to decide what to wear.
Sexual consent isn’t gendered – at least, it shouldn’t be. If you’re chatting someone up in the hope that you’ll get to have sexy fun with them later, you shouldn’t be putting pressure on them to do things they don’t want to do, no matter what your gender or theirs. So apologies to everyone who knows this already, but I just wanted to pick up my sledgehammer and really slam this point home. Men: your consent matters too.