I’m 22 years old and about to graduate from college. Since as early as I can remember, I have lost interest in girls after dating and hooking up with them a few times. It’s weird because I’m always crazy about the person, and then, like flicking a light switch, I have to end it. Am I just attracted to the wrong personalities, or what? —E.K., Chapel Hill, North Carolina If you were in your 40s we’d be concerned, but it only stands to reason that at 22 you would be playing the field. (In the U.S. the average age at which men marry is 29.) Down the road you might want to pay attention to that “flicking a light switch” moment: Are you addicted to the dopamine high of a new sexual partner, a buzz that always wears off at some point? On the first few dates, do you learn something about the women that you honestly don’t like? Time does reveal complexities in people that cause us to have to accept that they’re not there merely to make us happy. But that level of maturity comes only with age, so there’s no point in beating yourself up about not committing to every girl you hook up with. Better that you end it early rather than drag it out, as long as you do it as honorably and honestly as possible.I’m attempting to grow my first beard at the age of 26. I have been growing it since September and do not plan to shave for a while. How long would it take for me to grow a beard like one of the Duck Dynasty guys’? Can you suggest any strategies to increase facial-hair growth and production?—C.C., Port Jervis, New York
The bushy beard you’re referring to predates by centuries what many people have recently begun to think of as the Duck Dynasty beard. Variations on this impressive growth include what’s known as sunnah in Muslim countries, a hipster beard in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and a skegg in Norway, land of the Vikings. Whatever you want to call it, there’s not a lot you can do to speed the process, beyond keeping your testosterone levels up naturally, since male hormones can facilitate hair growth. To keep your levels elevated, eat healthily, work out intensely and avoid stress. But growing a beard four to six inches beyond your chin can take several years, so patience is really the best strategy.One of my biggest nonsexual fantasies is to travel to London’s Savile Row and purchase a bespoke suit and pair of shoes. I know there are great tailors all over the world, many of them probably closer to where I live, but this is my fantasy. However, I’m not sure how to answer the question about which side I dress on. I’m not even sure I know what the question means. I have an idea, but since I wear boxer briefs and am an average guy, I doubt it has any relevance. What do I say when I’m asked, and how can I sound cool and sophisticated when I respond?—B.S., Louisville, Kentucky
Indeed there are few nonsexual indulgences as satisfying as having clothes custom made for you. There’s a sensuality in the perfect fit, an intimate relationship with your garments that can border on fetishistic and that no factory-made suit can create. “Dressing left or right” is tailor-speak for which side your penis hangs to. In more trim styles of pants, a tailor can add a little extra fabric to comfortably accommodate the penis with minimal visible bulge in the crotch of the pants. No less a source than the online magazine Savile Row Style polled British tailors and reported that most men’s penises tend to dangle to the left. Don’t beat around the bush with a British tailor. During the pants fitting simply say, “I dress left. Do you think it’s worth adding a little extra fabric?” And don’t take it personally if they say no. It’s not an issue with loose-fitting pants. As for helping you figure out which side you dress, we politely decline.
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