Sex By Numbers: Mind Your Manners

A weekly look at sex and culture, by the numbers. 

Manners are important—in life, in the bedroom, and in the boardroom. This week’s Sex By Numbers highlights some lapses in etiquette, including one we never thought we’d have to correct: answering the phone during sex.

A few weeks: Now that the much talked about pregnancy of Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is over, everyone can commence criticizing the length of her relatively short maternity leave before she returns to work. We say: it may not work for everyone, but let mom make her own decision.

50 Years: Rachel Carson’s seminal environmental work Silent Spring was published 50 years ago. At the time, no one could quite believe a woman wrote the piece, leaving some readers to “assume from the author’s knowledge that he must be a man.” Decades later, the representation of women in science is still low.

1 million: One more reason to be jealous of the super cool and witty “it girl” Lena Dunham: an advice book based on anecdotes from her life is being shopped around to publishers with a price tag of $1,000,000.

33%: Percentage of 2000 polled Brits who think it’s socially acceptable to pick up a phone call during sex. Um, no.

50%: A study widely criticized for being an oversimplification (and a “slap in the face for gender equality”) found that the divorce rate for couples that shared housework was 50% higher than couples where the woman does the majority of the work.

Double take: It’s never a good thing for a celebrity when an old sex tape gets released. For Kanye West, it’s proved particularly bad, considering his on camera co-star is a dead ringer for his current real-life girlfriend, Kim Kardashian. One can only hope she won’t notice.

20 Weeks: UK Women’s Minister has said that it’s “common sense” for the legal abortion limit to be lowered to 20 weeks.

50: Think single ladies over 50 have lost their spark. Don’t be so rude. An Australian study found that these women “are more likely to have a one night stand than their Gen X or Gen Y daughters.”

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