Ladies, this just in: sex is the most important thing in the world. If you aren't doing it, you're dysfunctional. If you prefer it in bed, you're vanilla. If you'd rather watch Breaking Bad and eat a packet of bourbons, you need a psychological assessment.
It's time to spice it up, get adventurous, experimental, kinky. It's time to bring out the big box of sexual Kleenex and push your comfort zone to the absolute limit in order to achieve a multiple-tantric-g-spot orgasm that lasts for six days and makes you feel like a glowing golden goddess of the night.
On top of this, you need to be hairless from the neck down, thin, tanned, body confident, in possession of a menagerie of dildos stored tidily in a gilded case, perma-horny and most importantly, great in bed. Forget work commitments, the kids and every other responsibility that comes with adulthood, your wild sex life is the top priority and you simply cannot be happy without one - or so the heteronormative mass media would have you believe.
And yet this concupiscent everywoman and her well-thumbed collection of BDSM literotica intimidates me. I mean, do I really have to endure an Ann Summers party with my gal pals and put a vibrator on the end of my nose to prove that I'm a liberated, modern woman? Do I really have to explore the backdoor with the blind abandon of a naked mole rat to show how comfortable I am with my beau? Why should I stomach these exotic flavours when in my heart (or loins, to be more accurate) I long for the sweet straightforwardness of vanilla?
Sure, the very word vanilla suggests something that's bland, unadventurous and neutral. No one wants to identify themselves within these innocuous limitations because it hints at a failing on their part to be spontaneous, sexy and free. Modern women don't want vanilla sex. They want Rihanna's NSFW whips and chains. They want to be like whatshername from Sex and the City. They want Mr Grey in the Red Room with the spank paddle. They don't want to consign themselves to a lifetime of sexual mundanity, wedded to a memory foam mattress in the marital bedroom with the lights switched off and a lukewarm cup of peppermint tea sloshing about on the bedside table. That's olden days - belonging to a time before you could buy a cock ring in Sainsbury's.
But I want to reclaim vanilla sex, if I may. To remind and reassure you that it's a lovely way to spend the afternoon and truly nothing to be ashamed of. Enjoying it doesn't make you any less of a woman or indeed, a man, and you don't have to master the Kama Sutra to be a memorable lover. Vanilla is intimate, stripped of the theatrics of a casual affair and unsullied by the relentless wurr of a rubber rabbit. I'm not saying that I want vanilla every day - who does?
Sometimes I'm up for mango or tabasco or even mint choc chip. But after a long day of life, when I need to abandon cognizance and experience an authentic carnal connection, vanilla is my flavour of choice. And guess what my friends? That's okay.