This is your brain. This is your brain on sex.

Something like that.
Scientific American’s Mind has an article this month giving a neural tour of the brain’s sexual response. The article supports Michael Bailey’s contention that women are more flexible in their erotic responding than men, who are more channeled into either same or opposite sex responding.
Here are the bullet points for the Mind article:

-Sexual desire and orgasm are subject to various influences on the brain and nervous system, which controls the sex glands and genitals.
-The ingredients of desire may differ for men and women, but researchers have revealed some surprising similarities. For example, visual stimuli spur sexual stirrings in women, as they do in men.
-Achieving orgasm, brain imaging studies show, involves more than heightened arousal. It requires a release of inhibitions engineered by shutdown of the brain’s center of vigilance in both sexes and a widespread neural power failure in females.

Makes for interesting weekend reading…

Smooth thinking on sexuality: Labels don’t communicate well

Robert Epstein, a frequent commentator on sexuality issues, reports in advance of his Scientific American online survey of 18,000 people regarding precision in defining sexual orientation.  He says,

Although common thinking holds that everyone is either “gay” or “straight,” my new survey of nearly 18,000 people who voluntarily answered an online quiz shows that these terms are highly misleading. Sexual orientation actually lies on a smooth continuum, and the way people state their orientation is often a poor predictor of their true sexual behaviors and fantasies. Someone can call himself “gay” but behave “straight,” and vice versa.

Looking forward to his findings…