What We Need Is A More Detailed Sex Quality Rating System

What We Need Is A More Detailed Sex Quality Rating System

With all the vagueness inherent to the various rating systems on which we rely, from movie and video game ratings to 1-4 star quality reviews for everything from restaurants to porn websites, you’d think someone would have come up with a more specific set of ratings for something by now.

Still, everywhere you look, it’s just a row of quality stars, or a number of tomatoes, or some equally unspecific phrase like “mature audiences only.” (Calico’s husband technically is an adult, sure — but is he “mature”? Not by a mile.)

Even when it comes to something important, like ranking our quality sexual encounters, or the quality of our sex lives, we humans can’t seem to achieve clarity. We hear about “bad” sex and “good” sex, or even “consistently mediocre” sex — but what, exactly, do those words mean? And why isn’t there a handy color-coded chart to accompany them?

If you’re frustrated by all this vagueness, have no fear: Calico has again come up with the solution. Find out what that solution is in her latest post, “What We Need Is A More Detailed Sex Quality Rating System.”

sex quality

– Calico Rudasill, Sssh.com Porn Movies For Women and Couples

One of my lifelong pet peeves is the phenomenon of rating systems which simply don’t provide enough detail or nuance to be useful.

Take the much mocked, color-coded old Homeland Security Advisory System, which rated the risk of impending terrorist attack on a scale of green (“Low”) to red (“Extreme”), for instance. Once that thing was established, there was never a green rating and rarely a red one, meaning that we were constantly poised somewhere between a “general” risk of terrorist attack and a “high” one – and about all we knew about what those ratings meant was that the former was lower than a “significant” risk and the latter was… well, somehow greater than significant.

Rather than replace the color-coded system (which we have, with fancy new “bulletins” issued through something called the National Terrorism Advisory System), I’ve always felt we should have added more colors to provide gradations of risk between the five we had, along with more detailed text to accompany those additional colors. 

Mauve could indicate “kinda/sorta worse than elevated,” for example, while aquamarine could sit somewhere between “don’t worry about a thing, folks” shamrock and “keep a 24/7 cable news channel on your TV constantly for the next three days, just in case something to panic over comes up” teal.

Well, Consistency is Good, Right?

Most quality rating systems suffer from this kind of vagueness, from movie ratings (if we have a “PG-13,” shouldn’t we at least have “PG-9” and “PG-16” to give it some context?) to video game ratings (are we talking about “mature” strictly in the sense of older than 17, or mature in reference people who have finally stopped acting like teenagers, something my husband apparently isn’t going to do until he’s in his sixties?).

Worst of all is our language for rating the quality of our sex lives – for which there is no governing body or industry association like the MPAA or ESRB, so far as I’m aware. This lack of guidance from an official body leaves the rest of us struggling to communicate about the quality of the sex we have, a fact highlighted by a recent letter to The Guardian.

“My boyfriend and I have been intimate for several months, but the sex is consistently mediocre,” writes an unidentified reader. “Neither of us climax, and often I’m not sure whether I’m giving him pleasure. Our communication about sex is essentially nil; it’s just assumed that it will happen when we’re in bed together.”

Oh my. Where to begin?

Perhaps understandably, in her response to the letter, the Guardian’s Pamela Stephenson Connolly focuses on the stated difficulty in communicating that the letter’s author references in her complaint. My focus, however, is on the rating I emphasized in bold above – “consistently mediocre.”

On the one hand, there’s not much to be said for mediocrity, even when it’s consistent (just ask any Miami Dolphins fan).

On the other hand, if sex is consistently mediocre, at least that suggests it isn’t “quality” sex, even if it never rises to good sex.

I suspect you can see where I’m going with this….

Where I’m Going with This

Speaking of improving communication, I think our collective communication about the quality of sex would be greatly benefitted by a standardized rating system – and because I do miss that old color-coded terrorist threat matrix, I think our sex ratings should be color-based, if only to make the inevitable infographics surrounding the rating system more aesthetically pleasing.

Here’s what I propose for a new Standardized Sex Qualtiy Rating System colors and the textual explanation thereof:

Emerald green = The sex is Amazing AF

Shamrock green = The sex is still Amazing, but not quite Amazing AF

Pickle green = Really, Really Good sex – but his penis reminded me just a bit too much of a pickle

Cobalt blue = Pretty Good sex, but could have been better (just sayin’)

Cerulean blue = Pretty Good sex – but if you care about his feelings, maybe rate it Cobalt, instead

Navy blue = Pretty Good sex, but with a sailor this time

Bumblebee yellow = OK sex, but certainly nothing to write home about (unless your family is both very close and very open with each other like that)

Lemon yellow = OK sex, but he had funky spunk

Canary yellow = OK sex, but since he’s into golden showers, I really should hydrate better beforehand

Marmalade orange = Consistently Mediocre sex

Cantaloupe orange = Consistently Mediocre sex and he puts on elevator jazz in the background

Fire orange = Consistently Mediocre sex, punctuated by the occasional need for a course of antibiotics

Lipstick red = Bad sex, but I’ll give him one more shot if he promises not to try to “talk dirty” this time

Cherry red = Sex so bad, the only way to make myself feel better was to binge on chocolates afterwards

Wine red = Just like Cherry, except substitute port wine for chocolates

There! Now, doesn’t that make things easier? 

With my world-bettering mission for the day hereby accomplished, it’s time to grab my husband and retire for a sexual encounter that should, if history is any indication, land somewhere between Shamrock and Cerule – er, I mean Cobalt.

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