I assumed the title of this latest blog-o-specimen would intrigue not only those with prurient interests, but also horn-dogs throughout the cyber universe. And here you all are! Welcome! (I'll leave it to each of you to decide in which category you belong.)
Before diving into today's x-rated featurette, I wanted to take just a moment to thank all those who took the time to post a comment on my first two blog entries ("Life, Love, Sex, HIV, and Other Unscheduled Events" and "A Chronic, Not Always So Manageable, Condition"), including the dude who so completely misinterpreted the intent of my last blog that he referred to me as "the prophet of doom" and the other fluffernutter who wanted to hold me personally responsible for "exacerbating the psychological collateral our community has been burdened with. ..." Hmm. Nonetheless, thanks to one and all for the lively interchange! Let's keep the conversation going.
I fully realize I owe you all a "part deux" for my "A Chronic, Not Always So Manageable, Condition" rant, and I promise you'll get it eventually, OK? However, today I've got something else occupying my mind -- sex! OK. OK. As a cyber sexpert on The Body's expert forum and a person of Italian descent, I tend to have sex on my mind a lot, but that's beside the point. So without further foreplay, let's get to it, shall we?
The Urban Dictionary defines monkey sex several ways:
Sex with a monkey.
The joyful but tiresome act of sexual intercourse while hanging from the monkey bars.
The communal act of rough ... wild ... passionate ... primatial fornication, usually accompanied by various vocal tones and frantic leg humping as commonly seen in orangutans. It is also customary to wear "Planet of the Apes" costumes when having hot monkey sex.
I can hear you all saying "very interesting, but what does this have to do with HIV/AIDS?" Great question! Thanks for asking! I'm fairly certain you all have considerable personal experience with the three types of hot monkey sex described above; consequently, I wanted to discuss yet another variation: hot monkey FUSION sex. It's central to understanding my response to a persistent "QTND" (question that never dies). That eternal question simply put is: Did monkeying around with monkeys cause AIDS or is HIV/AIDS really the result of a botched governmental/scientific plot?
There can be no doubt the origin of HIV/AIDS has puzzled, intrigued and fascinated scientists and conspiracy theorists since the devastating new disease was first recognized in the early 80s. Theories abound, including:
A secret governmental biological warfare program from the Cold War gone terribly wrong.
A secret plot to exterminate gays and drug users.
The unfortunate consequence of a horned-up safari hunter screwing Magilla the Gorilla.
So here's the real scoop. But, be forewarned: this scoop involves some poop! HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) evolved from SIV (simian immunodeficiency virus) in chimps. This wasn't confirmed until 2006, because, as it turns out, chimps in the wild aren't all that crazy about sticking their arms out for blood tests. Consequently, intrepid scientists had to develop another method for tracking the virus. They did so by isolating viral remnants in monkey turds. Yep, they traipsed through the jungle collecting, schlepping and analyzing monkey poop! (And you thought you had a shitty job!) SIV was identified in several types of monkeys in West-Central Africa. Despite the titillating possibility that HIV jumped from species to species via hot monkey sex with a horned-up safari dude, this is not the case. Sorry to disappoint all you zoophiles (you know who you are!).
We are now quite certain the cross-species jump used the food chain rather than the boudoir. Long story short, here's what we think happened. Monkey #1 (let's call him "Chimp Zero") hunts, kills and eats an SIV-infected chimp of the red-capped mangabey variety as well as another SIV-infected chimp of the spotted nose variety. These two different strains of SIV have a viral quickie-nookie (hot monkey FUSION sex) and WHAM-BAM-THANK-YOU-SAM a new strain of SIV is born. This new strain has the capability of mutating in humans (to HIV).
Now Chimp Zero carrying the new strain of SIV is unlucky enough to get hunted, killed and butchered by a feckless human. Chimp Zero's infected blood gets into the human bloodstream, either by (1) a cut on the hunter's hand (he could have been clumsy with his machete!) or (2) eating an undercooked chimp-entrée (monkey chops should never be served rare!). The SIV then mutates to adapt to its human host and voila! We now have a previously unknown retrovirus with the unique ability to destroy the human immune system. And here's the real kicker, the new virus is spread via humankind's favorite pastime: monkeying around!
Although HIV wasn't formally recognized until 1981, we've now uncovered the virus in plasma samples stored as far back as 1959 from a dude who lived in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
But what about all the snazzy conspiracy theories and government-sponsored scientific plots and programs gone wrong? Well, rational thought is often an enigma to conspiracy theorists, but let's at least try to look at the science (facts) and logic rationally.
As I mentioned, there is sound scientific evidence that HIV has been infecting humans as far back as the 1950s. Does anyone really think crazed scientists were creating highly sophisticated retroviruses in the laboratory in the era that was pre-Beatles, pre-Kennedy, pre-fax machines??? Frevinsakes!!! As Mr. Spock would say, "That is just not logical." Then again, conspiracy theories seldom are!
OK, but what about a highly secret malicious plot to wipe out gays and drug users?!?!?! Well, the epidemic began in rural Africa, right? Rural Africa is not exactly a hotbed of hedonistic gay pleasure domes and bathhouses or intravenous heroin dens! Why would the evil scientists hatch their dastardly scheme in sub-Saharan safari country? Who were they trying to wipe out? Tarzan? True, he did wear only a loincloth (very gay) and was known to be a swinger (from vines), but Jane swears he was straight as a lawn dart.
So there you have it. The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Now all you conspiracy theorists can go back to investigating the giant reptiles that are breeding in the sewers beneath Manhattan.
Until next time, this is Dr. Bob wishing steaming, hot, toe-curling, wake-the-neighbors, own-name-forgetting "safe" monkey sex to one and all.
Want to get in touch with Dr. Bob? You can reach him through his "Ask the Experts" forum, by sending a message to the Robert James Frascino AIDS Foundation, or by leaving a comment for him below. (If it's a private message, or if it includes personal info such as your e-mail address or phone number, we won't post the comment, but we will send it along to him.)