Your vagina: gateway to information

More information is always good, so I have to endorse this brand new initiative from our government.

It doesn’t go quite far enough, though. Evolution has screwed mankind over by making women’s fertility cryptic—many primates express overt signals as they become receptive, such as swelling and reddening of the vulva, and we don’t get any visible signs at all. Let’s use technology to return to those halcyon days, and imbed women with LH monitors that change color: from gray on infertile days, to pink as hormone levels rise, to flashing red to announce, “She’s ovulating, boys!” I wouldn’t suggest anything as crude as mounting the device on her vulva, though: on the forehead would be fine.

The device should also have some ports to enable coupling it to fashion accessories. Wouldn’t a police siren hat plugged into the fertility monitor be attractive?

I better patent this idea, quick.


  1. Torbjörn Larsson says

    So subtle. I like the cryptic ways of women – it isn’t just the fertility, you know. All part of the fun game.

    Cryptic fertility may be a social glue, and the recurring ovulation is a boon. But doesn’t the bonobo make do anyway? Hmm, maybe we *are* screwed over…

  2. says

    Actually, the lack of female reproductive signals works out in our favor, boys. Evolutionally, if women were more overt about their fertility, we wouldn’t spend any time trying to get nookie, except for once a month. The fact that women hide their fertility means that we get sex, more or less, whenever we want it.

  3. JohnBentley says

    This sounds like the book Primal Urge by Brian Aldiss. Written back in the 60’s, it had the government of England mandating that everyone had to have a metal disk mounted on their forehead that would glow pink to red when the wearer was sexually aroused. It was mostly about outing everyone’s secret passions (all the gays were outed, including the totally repressed). Not a great book, but a fun concept.

  4. andy.s says

    Wouldn’t work! The drive to reproduce is an UNconscious urge.

    At the conscious level we bachelors try to avoid getting our paramours pregnant (paternity suits cost money!).

    A woman signaling receptivity would be avoided like the proverbial plague.

  5. Hairhead says

    Hah! Another person who read the Brian Aldiss book. I always thought it was perverse the way he described the various people who were outed: the homosexuals, the rapists, and (most intriguingly) the “autoerotics” who went about in a continuous state of sexual excitement.

    As for the signalling of fertility, well, many men would stay away, but the fundie all-sperm-are-sacred guys would be leaping on these women, with or without permission. In fact, I believe that mnay of these fundies (like the fundamentalist Islamists who use the excuse of needing four male witnesses to legitimize rape) attack ANY fertile female, under the logic that God doesn’t want any eggs wasted.

  6. Withheld says

    As one of those vagina carriers boys, trust me, the clues/signals are there. Study and observe more.

  7. Judy L. says

    while the hormonal cycle can effect a woman’s feelings of friskiness, female sexual interest (or “receptiveness”, as it’s typically called, since female sexuality is considered passive) isn’t confined to her fertile period; maybe this is the evolutionary adaptation our primate ancestors got when they traded-in their puffy vulvas.

    an external signal of fertile periods (other than mucking about with your cervical mucous) would be SWELL for we females to use to track our cycles (there are devices available in europe that do this), but other than signalling men who don’t want to procreate to avoid us (as andy s. has suggested), it sounds pretty useless for the average guy.

    the state should to keeps its eyes and ears (and political or religious agenda) out of the reproductive tracts of its citizens.

  8. Judy L. says

    whoops! last sentence should have read:
    the state should keep its eyes and ears (and political or religious agenda) out of the reproductive tracts of its citizens.

  9. says

    Interestingly, what signals are there, social conventions (e.g. about covering up / washing away smells, etc.) ensure are hidden away from sight.

    It’s all very interesting, eh?

  10. Stogoe says

    Speaking as a non-vagina carrier, Withheld, these Clues are oft too subtle and contradictory to be relied upon. We simply need more evidence upon which to act or not to act.

  11. says

    Since when do women not have external indicators of increased fertility? My bosom and rear end get pleasantly plump every 28 days, right on schedule, the week before my “Aunt Flo” (I think Newt Gingrich called it an “infection”) visits.

    And no matter how consciously our boyfriends want to avoid pregnancy, that instinctual urge to spread their seed is too good to pass up.

  12. Interrobang says

    I wouldn’t mind having some more overt signals myself. I’ve never had a regular cycle in my life without technological assistance. 28 days?! I wish. Sometimes with me, it’s like 21 days, then 90 days, then 42 days, then ?. This probably means I’m not optimised for reproduction, which makes me happy anyhow. I have better things to donate to society than my genetic information.

    I wouldn’t mind being able to monitor the status of my menstrual cycle, but on the other hand, I wouldn’t mind if it disappeared altogether — unfortunately, all the available options for doing that kind of suck in other ways. What a Hobson’s Choice!

  13. k. says

    “We simply need more evidence upon which to act or not to act.”

    Hmm…how about asking and listening?

  14. Mooser says

    Not “vagina envy”- it’s called “Venus envy”

    And if you can’t tell when a woman is ovulating, or close to it, you’re just not paying attention.
    I always knew, back when those things mattered to me.
    These days, when I can tell, it’s just a signal to me to fake a headache.
    I have adopted the very wise attitudes of the Papuan natives- contact with women is enervating, and besides it’ll sap your strength.
    Of course, sitting in a longhouse listening to other guys lie is just boring.

  15. says

    The women I’ve spoke to and the biology books I’ve read suggest that there is a tremendous variability in “noticability” of certain aspects of the menstrual cycle, etc. This thread confirms that …

    Though, I’ve never heard of anyone whose rear end gets bigger until now. Interesting.

  16. Buffalo Gal says

    Keith – it’s simple. A few pounds of water weight land in the butt. You may not notice, but a woman’s jeans sure do.

    j – “information”

  17. David Harmon says

    Interrobang: ” I’ve never had a regular cycle in my life without technological assistance. 28 days?! I wish. Sometimes with me, it’s like 21 days, then 90 days, then 42 days, then ?. ”

    Have you kept a log of your periods? One possibility is that your ovaries may just be running on different-length cycles. If you can spot the separate cycles in your log, you can at least predict the future pattern. (Usually the two ovaries settle on the same length, opposite phase, but sometimes, for whatever reason, they don’t.)