You shouldn’t mix your private life with your professional one. For instance, if my editor had not known I were the father of a 5-year-old he never would have proposed that I volunteer for a silly investigation into the reported sperm donor shortage in France. Of the 350 donors in 2006, only 250 were selected, giving birth to 1,122 babies. And despite a big ad campaign last year, the rate remains too low--parents asking for frozen cum will have to wait up to two years to get their hands on a sample. So of course I could not refuse the charitable opportunity to jerk off with a purpose or to potentially inseminate a famous Parisian actress dating an impotent French writer.
I was sad to discover there are no sperm banks in France. There are in other advanced European cities, but not in France, where you’ve got to go to a generic hospital to make a gift. I was looking forward to stepping into some kind of Cronenbergish place. Let-down number one.
Inside, the secretary’s voice was warm but firm, making me feel like I wasn’t dealing with the most gratuitious move ever. I started stressing over the responsibilities involved in such deep action as giving sperm, even questioning at what cost I'd been squandering my daily squirtings. To give sperm, you need to be younger than 45, have procreated already, and get your wife's consent. I began to fear some utter bullshit would make me ineligible during one of the five necessary appointments with the spluge sergeant. But after grabbing some information and calling a friend who's a doctor, I believed that as long as I didn't spontaneously mutate into an AIDS-infected psycho, I'd be fine.
I had my first interview the day after the first call; I guess they weren't joking about that shortage. I prepared masturbation material (aka a cellphone collection of photos from Purple's blog), not realizing this first encounter would only be used as an introduction to public cum-giving, plus a little preliminary psychoanalysis. The building looks like a remnant of Chernobyl, but the great thing is that the sperm office has its own floor, so when you press 6 and you’re a man alone, the nurses in the elevator know what you’re there for. It makes you look like a philanthropist.
A nice-looking scrub takes me to an office where she and her superior brief me about my donation and want to know about my motivations. "I want my sperm to be useful again," I say, "but my wife doesn’t want another child." I remain surprisingly coherent, even when they switch to subjects such as anonymity, something that could disappear next year in France. Test tube babies who want to know their genetic parents are rising up, and it's become a serious issue. I tell them I stand for anonymity because I don’t want to live with the idea of a 20-something knocking at my door in the future claiming he’s my son. The boss guy looks at me suspiciously. But he wouldn’t be your son," he says. Oh.
I fear that if they’re so tough now, the next interviews are gonna be a pain. It will mostly be feelings babble, plus bio-assessment of my squiggly germ cells. Can't they just let me squirt in a tube? When I start speaking about genetic inheritance versus love and education, I feel like a persuasive man who’s thought his shit over. I ask them about the shelf life of a donation--can it be used 100 years from now? Nope. Since there are so few donors, the sperm will be used during the next two years for no more than ten inseminations in order to prevent inbreeding.
And then, surprise! They tell me I will produce a sample today. I damn myself for not getting my pornfolio ready. I’m taken to a small room by the cute scrub who's so embarrassed to show me the procedure it’s charming. I want to tell her she’ll be more efficient than the dirty mags but I lack the guts and the discourteousness. Sure, I've washed my parts before, but rubbing them with antisceptic was a whole new experience. This is about to be the cleanest jerk-off in history.
The most exciting photo in the porn collection is a simple portrait of Mazarine Pingeot, daughter of François Mitterrand and personal sex fantasy of mine. The room is boring, and so is the Modigliani painting of a naked woman on the wall. I’ve got to focus on my regular mental images: friends, wife, experiences, fantasies, ending thinking of the scrub giving me a blow job. But it’s more tedious than usual. I’m half stiff but still manage my way through to spit out a small amount of essence. In the rush, the cover of the recipient falls to the ground. I was warned this thing had to remain unspoiled. Errr.
I leave the cum drops where I was told to and leave like my acknowledged masturbation were the most common thing in the world. Later in the afternoon, I got a call from the scrub telling me my sperm was not topping their quality demands because it lacked mobility after freezing. First I thought, Cool, I’ll avoid the next steps. But then I felt sad not to be able to help a couple of French artists procreate. Then I felt upset. Not only will I not ever potentially jizz inside Anna Mouglalis, I also just gave genetic reason to what'll likely lead to my extermination when bionazis come to power. Worse than a 20-year-old knocking on the door, eyes dripping, whispering, "Daddy?" is being sent to some camp for not carrying uber sperm.
Well, fuck them. My real kid who belongs to me is fucking better than anything they concoct will ever be. And as the scrub gently reminded me, my sperm is good for me but not for others. You bet! The population of impotent bohemian bourgeoisie is just not ready yet, so fuck all of you! I’ll keep my sperm for myself, so your girlfriend can go stuff her uterus with someone else’s.