Do Jewish men make the best lovers? Ha! I knew that would get your attention. So much more critical a matter than the prospective composition of the next Israeli government. And you know, it’s a question that gentile women occasionally consider when having a good old chinwag about the male of the species. Jewish men do have a reputation for being highly adept in the bedroom, but is it deserved? Or is it a myth propagated by those very same men, all the better to woo non-Jewish ladies? (Yes, dear readers, that does happen, although generally outside Israel.)
An English friend of mine — a lady of a certain age, like moi — swears by Jewish lovers. She has had several and says she adores their ‘dark Jewish looks.’ But colouring is not the same as canoodling.
I believe I’m well-placed to offer a view on this absorbing issue, as some time ago (purely for research purposes of course), I spent a year toiling at the coal face of the treacherous internet dating scene and meeting a diverse range of men — in terms of age and occupation, cultural and ethnic background, and socio-economic status. Of the couple dozen or so I got to know, five were Jewish.
Now, when I say ‘know,’ that might mean in the simple dating sense — going out for drinks or dinner — or in the, ahem, more intimate sense. And a lady never tells. Well, except for me, obviously, as I wrote a memoir about my escapades. And let me tell you, on the whole I did not come away with an overly high opinion of men of any stripe. Such a load of rascals…
But anyway, back to my Jewish chaps. The first was a 40-something, Armani-clad media executive with a renovated farmhouse in Berkshire and a swish sports car. He was well-educated and cultured. A bit smarmy, perhaps, but he told funny Jewish jokes and did a brilliant Jackie Mason accent, and you can forgive a man his failings if he makes you laugh.
Next up was a cocky young estate agent from Hampstead, who was in many ways typical of that smooth-talking, shiny-suited breed. But his patter was tinged with an appealing self-irony. I liked the fact that he didn’t take himself too seriously. And he was undeniably cute.
Then there was an advertising copywriter who hated his day-job and dreamt of being a successful stand-up comic. To this end, he was making nocturnal appearances at small comedy venues around the country. Slightly-built and nervy, he struck me as the Woody Allen of Golders Green (you must have heard of this traditionally Jewish suburb in north London, nicknamed ‘Schmolders Groin’). He was no adonis, obviously. But I soon discovered that he was entertaining company. Humour and intelligence can be as attractive as a great physique and movie star looks.
After him, I met a super-bright young internet entrepreneur who still lived with his family in smart St. John’s Wood (another traditionally Jewish area — London has a few). He was at the cutting edge of the digital revolution and utterly passionate about the technology. A total geek, in other words, but in a charming way. And with lovely manners.
Finally, there was the lecturer who traveled to Israel each year to visit relatives and pay homage to the holy sites. A handsome hunk with a designer beard, he too was passionate about certain things, and I’m not referring here to the Wailing Wall. If you get my drift…
So, now to the big question. No doubt you are eager to know how these fellows stacked up in the Casanova department, as against men of my own, gentile persuasion. Well, here’s the truth. And it might not be what you want to hear. Jewish men are neither better nor worse at the bedroom arts than anyone else. Ardour and sensuality are not culturally or racially inherited gifts, they are strictly down to the individual.
However, I can honestly state that the Jewish men I have known, intimately or otherwise, through both the online and offline worlds, have, as a rule, been more articulate and more literate than the general run of men out there. I’m a writer, so this matters to me. After all, sex is just sex. But a guy in this day and age who can spell and punctuate! That is not to be sniffed at.