Bang to Rights
Egypt is setting down clear markers in its drive to democracy. According to Arab media, the newly elected parliament is proposing a law giving men the legal right to have sex with their wives up to six hours after they have died.
Now call me old-fashioned – but I’d always been led to believe sex was something to be enjoyed between two consenting people. Where is the consent in this? Even if the wife signed up to it beforehand, like in a pre-nuptial, there’d be no opportunity to change her mind. And unless it’s physically or spiritually possible for a dead person to be stimulated in the same way as a live one, I can’t see where her enjoyment would come from.
Admittedly there’ve been times when I’ve thought that the woman in my bed has not displayed much enthusiasm, and no doubt some have felt the same of me. But to know this in advance would seem about as exciting a prospect as getting Isla the Inflatable out of the bottom drawer.
It also raises a number of technical questions. Would the dead woman still be the man’s wife? And why six hours? Is that the amount of time it would be pleasurable before say the body starts to emit gases or stiffen up. Perhaps it’s the longest a man’s interest is likely to last? With five point four minutes the average before a man reaches orgasm, rising by a power of three for the next two climaxes, add in progressively longer recovery periods and six hours should do nicely before calling it a day.
And when does the six hours start? Maybe the man could delay calling the doctor to squeeze out more time. Or what if the six hours is up and he hasn’t quite finished? Does the long arm of the law step in?
‘Right sir, that’ it. Time’s up. It’s not our fault you started with less than five point four minutes to go.’
What’s more worrying is that Egypt is not that far away – about the same flight time as say Tenerife or Cyprus. Imagine at 10.34 p.m. (apparently the average most popular time for intercourse) listening to your neighbours through the thin, papyrus walls of a Sharm El Sheikh hotel. As the man races to his finale, with the woman’s enjoyment conspicuous by her silence, wouldn’t it be tempting to think:
‘I wonder if she’s … ? Ah well it shouldn’t last more than another five hours or so.’
The Thomas Cook terms and conditions would have to state:
Balcony and sea view £2, Air conditioning £3, Aud-erism £5. Married couples please note that if wives die during the holiday, local laws apply.
I accept that every culture has its own ideas and values. There must be hundreds of rituals across the world, many involving a lack of female rights, that would make the six-hour rule look saintly. And at least this way the woman de facto suffers in silence. But assuming most women don’t die suddenly, wouldn’t it be a darn sight more enjoyable to go for so-called ‘farewell intercourse’ while she’s on her death bed but technically still alive. At least she might be able to help with proceedings; and she’d have the chance to say no if she didn’t want it, and to enjoy it if she did – a proper, shared goodbye.