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Sue Johanson's Sex Talk

Published January 30, 2009 at 11:43 a.m.

Reports of sexting got you worried about the state of sex education today? Sex expert Sue Johanson was certainly hot and bothered about the information adolescents are receiving when she spoke to a packed auditorium a couple weeks ago in the University of Vermont Davis Center.

The 78-year-old sex educator and former talk show host gave a lively lecture and led an anonymous question-and-answer session for an event sponsored by UVM's Center for Health and Well-being. I had the chance to speak with her beforehand, and I had prime viewing of her suggestive and acrobatic antics from my seat in the front row. I know for a fact that my grandmother is not that flexible!

Ms. Johanson started her career as a sex educator after finding that as easy as it was to talk to other people about sex, she preached and moralized to her own kids. Since then, she told me, she has devoted herself so much to improving sex education that she has even taken to the field to learn tips from Toronto prostitutes on how to keep sex both erotic and safe.

Before opening the floor for questions, Ms. Johanson emptied her bag of sex toys onto the table onstage and gave her personal recommendations to the crowd. She travels with them to every lecture she gives, which can make going through airport customs a drag. "Don't ever get behind me at the airport!" she says.

Unfortunately, the talk ended abruptly when the audience and Ms. Johanson were informed that the Davis Center would be shutting down for the night... but not before one male student had the chance to ask if participating in the winter naked bike ride could have caused certain sexual, er, malfunctions. That's certainly one argument that hasn't come up in the debate over shutting down the biannual bare tradition.

Editor's note: Sorry it took so long to bring you this report. Mariah filed it shortly after the talk and I didn't see it until just now! Yikes! Sorry about that. -- Cathy Resmer

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