One night, when I was about 13-years-old, my dad caught me doing unspeakable things to myself and said, “You know, if you keep that up you’re going to go blind.” And I said, “Dad, I’m over here.”
I’ve been telling that joke since I was 19-years-old, working in a bar, trying to get tips. It landed every time, probably because most people can identify with the premise. Not the idea of getting caught, but that it’s something that everyone does, no one admits to, and almost nobody talks about. And if they do, it’s in jokes, horror, or very quietly with your best friend with whom you’ve entered into some sort of mutually agreeable suicide pact. After all, we’ve been told that masturbation will: make you go blind, stunt your growth, make you go insane, give you hairy palms, give you acne, and according to some, will send you straight to Hell, regardless of how many charities you donate to or lepers you cure.