Hi, it’s me, Gary the sex-writing goose, with the special dispatch pertaining to the L’s new Sex Issue. As you recall, in it we ask a variety of sex professionals about their work, and the affects it has on their personal sex lives. One of the people interviewed, of course, is pornographic film actor and professional celebrity Ron Jeremy, who you probably know from such films as Swedish Erotica 26 and Caught from Behind 2: The Sequel, or possibly from his poster in the dorm room of the guy on your floor who sold weed sophomore year. Because the kids can’t seem to get enough of the jolly guy with the bushy mustache and unnaturally large penis, here’s the complete version of the interview that appears in the magazine — it was, as you can imagine, way too long, big and massive to fit in the L.
Interview conducted by Mary Block, from questions developed by interviewer and Benjamin Sutton.
1) What is your age?
Oh, you’re heartless. What a way to start. I feel like I’m in my 30s but I’m 55.
2) What gender do you identify as?
3) What is your sexual orientation?
4) What is your race?
5) What is your profession/job title?
Performer. Although some people like to make a joke and say "per-whore-mer." I’d sayâ€¦entertainer. I do a lot of things. I lecture in colleges, Triple X church. You can say actor/entertainer. You can say actor/comedian/lecturer.
6) What is your current relationship status? (Please answer as you see fit.)
Well I just met you, honey! Where is 718, anyway? Uh, what’s my relationship status? I’d say… interesting.
I’ve had 5 girls in my life that I’ve said the words â€˜I love you’ to. The fifth one, her name is Juniper. She was my girlfriend for 3 1/2 years and now she is my best friend; she’s not my girlfriend. Really a very very strong love. When we were together we called it "roommates with romance, R&R". Now we we’ve split, we have an even funnier term. We’ve split but we have joint custody of the turtle. Cherry the tortoise. So I don’t say "ex-girlfriend," I don’t say "current best friend," I say "mother of turtle."
7) What, for you, qualifies as sex?
I don’t believe in the President Clinton definition that you have to have intercourse. I love these guys when they got caught and they say, "Oh look honey, it wasn’t sex, she was just blowing me." Then the wife goes and says, "Ok, I’ll go and do the same thing." "NO NO NO! OK it’s sex it’s sex!" I think, theoretically, starting with a French kiss is sexual. You know, friends don’t do that. Back to the question of sex, I’d say it starts with anything that involves the sexual organs. Or the boobies. And of course full-on sex is sex, and oral sex. And most people agree with me, unless they have an agenda.
8) How frequently do you engage in sexual activity?
Couple times a week, there’s no definite number. I could have a few in one day if I go to some big fancy party at Hugh Hefner’s mansion or something, some cute little playmates. Anywhere from like three to five times a week, or it could be nothing for a week. It often gets started in a very comical way. I have a standard deal. I say show me the boobies I’ll show you the penis.
9) How did you enter into your line of work?
Well I was doing theater. Plays in New York, Off-Broadway. I studied under Joel Zwick, at Café La Mama. Then I did Playgirl magazine in 1978 October, they published it. My ex-girlfriend sent in a picture in. I was approached to do porn after Playgirl. I said, "I can act, I’ve had training." I spent a half an hour in makeup; they never showed my face. I’m a classically trained actor; I can emote beyond "uuunnhhh".
10) How do you feel that your work influences your personal sex life?
To some extent. I think it both helps and hinders. It helps because of all the things you learn on a set. All the girls I’ve been with have helped teach me to be a better lover, you know: watching girls with girls, watching people who are good at it and emulating [them]. It hinders you because, if you know you’re gonna have a big day, you can kind of shy away from [sex] in the bedroom. Often you have to hold back. Me, with girls I’ve dated they say, "Great. I’m with a well-known porn star and he won’t have sex with me." Made it kinda funny. But the next day we’d catch up!
11) What are the positive impacts of your profession on your personal sex life? What are the negative impacts?
Both. You travel a lot in porn, but it helps because you can share your experiences with your other lovers. Me and Gene Simmons have talked about this. It’s an alternate lifestyle, and I’ve really seen it work. Men have long understood it; women are catching up. You know, they didn’t have terms like "boy toy" when I was a kid. Now I have guys calling me up crying, saying "I was just a one-night stand to her!" GOOD! Now you understand what we did in high school and college. It’s like that Meatloaf song. It’s about time they catch up. You know, I lecture in colleges around the world; I’ve seen huge changes. Women not only want good sex, they’re demanding it. You know there’s types of sex: there’s recreational sex, then there’s making love. I don’t care if Juniper has some guy when I’m out of town. I don’t like the guy — make that known — you know, make that noise, "ugh!" and get out of town. I’d get really jealous if they were having candlelight dinner or walk on a mountain top, or walk on a beach or hold hands. I’LL KILLYA! Or cuddle! YOU’RE DEAD! Cuddle! You know I’d really be heartbroken if she was in there cuddling somebody. That would eat me alive. But just to stick the dick in and leave? Because I’m out of town or she wants a little variety? It’s fine. I’ve always had a strong belief, since back when I was in high school — what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. And girls are catching up.
12) When have you felt the need to implement a separation between your personal and professional roles, in terms of sex? If possible, please name specific instances.
I thought that in the beginning. Then I started to realize that I am kind of a sleazy little bastard. You know, I don’t just put Ron Jeremy up on the porn shoot and then I’m Ron Hyatt everywhere else. I’m under contract with a company called Metro Interactive, but I work a lot less. There are times when I might not be in the mood [to be famous.] You know, if I’m with Juniper in a restaurant, it takes away a little bit from the moment, a candlelight dinner, "Yo Jeremy! Man, dude!" You know, some people are rude, I’m out with Juniper and someone goes, "Man, you got a big dick!" It takes away from it.
13) How do you wish sex were different, given your personal and professional experiences?
I wish women would communicate more in terms of what they like and what they don’t like. They’ll tell their best friend, their hairdresser. Tell US! We’re the guys that are in there! Men like a little direction. They want to give the girl the best time possible. I’m not saying like a drill sergeant: "Get that thing up! Get that purple-helmeted soldier at attention." But you know, in a gentle way. Men love that, LOVE that. Not like "you suck at this." You can say it in a positive way. "Try this, try thisâ€¦"
My second half of the advice is with swinging. Don’t act like the extra person is better than your wife or your girlfriend. It’s a new phase; you do feel itâ€¦Woman’s got a fifty, fifty five-year-old husband. Now she’s got a twenty two-year-old kid with a muscular body rammin’ her crazy. Don’t go berserk and yell and scream, you know, and then with your husband, "oh yeah, that’s it, right there, ho hum." The most important one is still your spouse, lover, whatever. Same thing goes for the guy. Keep looking at your wife. She’s still the important one. Don’t act like this person’s anywhere near the one you care for.
14) How has your job affected your partners’ perceptions of you?
Well, she knew it on the way in. We were in Hawaii once and we met this couple. She was amazed at how quickly I could get into it and keep the ball rolling, keep the swing happening. You know, a man sees a new face, he could screw mud. He could be with the Lee sisters — Ghast Lee and Beast Lee. You know, we’re like that. We’re dogs. Girl needs the whole gestalt. She was fascinated by that, but that wasn’t so much the business. I don’t think that it’s changed [my partner's perception of me] at all, except for being a better lover. I mean even when I was a teacher I had a pretty good sex life, and when I was working as a waiter up in the Catskills. You can still see me on a lot of Catskills websites. What’s your ethnic, by the way? (MB: Excuse me?) What’s your ethnic? (MB: I’m just sort of like a Western European mixâ€¦) Oh ok. Religion? (MB: Catholic?) Oh, ok. There’s a big thing about the Catskills, lots of Jews go up there. They call it the Borscht Belt. I got a lot of my beginnings as a sexual nutcase up there. In the summers, as a waiter. Long before porn. My first picture in Playgirl magazine was taken up there. Deluxe building of the Paramount Hotel in Parksville, NY, home ofâ€¦Isaac Asimov’s parents, [someone] from Sha Na Na.
You know, so like, Juniper and me, we had some quarrels about the lifestyle, but she didn’t meet me as a librarian. I mean, back when I was in junior high school I didn’t believe in total monogamy. By the way, I never would’ve gotten into porn had I had better breaks on Broadway. In fact I would’ve preferred never to have gotten into it. But I did porn, I have no complaints, I did it. It was a good second choice but it was a second choice. One thing people give a lot of credit to, and I’m not sure I do, is astrology. I’m a Pisces. For some strange reason, more porn stars are Pisces than any other sign. Isn’t that weird? It might be a coincidence; who knows. But a guy named James Sullivan did a survey, he looked at the calendars. He found, like, overwhelming Pisces. What are you? (MB: I’mâ€¦I guess I’d say I’m a Virgo.) Oh, ok.
15) How has your job affected your partners’ attitudes towards sex?
Well like I said before she wasn’t thrilled when I didn’t have sex with her because I had to have sex that day, or I had to leave town. She’s 11 years younger than me, she’s in her 30s now, but [when we were dating] she was in her 20’s, and girls that age want a lot of sex. And I’m really good at sexâ€¦once in a while. And with the same person especially, I mean I could do a different girl every night, but — I’m just being honest — with the same girl, it’s different. With the same person for many yearsâ€¦ As the years went by, it started to get a little more difficult. I mean you love the person to pieces, but the actual sex, with the same body. I’m not saying I wouldn’t try, because I know that making love and making like aren’t the same, but I had a problem with it. It’s true. Most people do too. I mean, she could be in great shape. Women are great lovers â€˜til the day they die. We suck. And I want to give her the good ride that she deserves. I always say, Viagra and Cialis are the greatest gifts to monogamy. Because they help you do your own wife.
16) Has your work ever put you in a situation were you were uncomfortable, or felt you’d gone beyond your personal sexual boundaries?
You always do that. I mean when you’re on a shoot. I mean, I’ve been on a boat where everyone got sick and vomited. But I mean, on slabs, I’ve shot in graveyards — fake graveyards, but on a stone. I’ve had sex on a moving horse and carriage. Of course, you get tested all the time. When you do Shakespeare you get tested. You know, "can you handle this?" You know, you’re doing iambic pentameter, you sound like a dumbass New York white boy. It usually sounds better when it’s a British accent. You know, the 15 girls scene was probably just that. I was the best-known male actor in porn at the time. That was a real test. You had to really pace yourself and internalize and not climax too soon. And to make it even more difficult, they made it all rubbers! That was during the era of AIDS and a lot of scary things going on, so [with] each new girl I had to get a new rubber, put it on, take it off, put it on, take it off. Not for oral sex, thank God. I was very proud of myself, But I did it, I did the pop shotâ€¦ that was a tough tough tough scene. Even the owner of the company came down to offer me a Viagra. "Nope. Not gonna do it. I’m doing it a capella, gonna see if I can do it. But don’t go too far! With that Viagra." But you know, I did it! I was so proud of myself. It worked. There were ups and downs to it. Literally. It’s not what you’d consider fun.
17) Has your work ever pushed you to expand your sexual comfort zone?
A little. I was never into B&D or S&M. But I directed the John Bobbitt movie. Then they wanted me and John to do a movie together and I said what the hell, I’ll do it. And it was just so comical. Watching us fall down, get banged. Once they wanted me to suck on a dildo and I wouldn’t do it â€˜cause I hate dick so I faked it. I covered it with my hand and I was sucking alongside of it and they said, "Ron!" It looked more comical than anything else. I had to crawl on the ground with a leash. I did a lot of things I’d never done before, because I’ve never been into that world. There’s nothing wrong with that world. But that was something past my comfort level — but the girl was very nice. She said, "We’ve got a big baby here." I said "Yes we do!" But other than that, porn can be uncomfortable anyway. You’re doing a scene, you’re not really in the mood, you’ve got problems with your family or a breakup. Uncomfortable locations, like I said. Crazy outfits.
Once they wanted me to be a little more mean. I’m more the white bread [type] — I’m not one of the kinkier performers. One time they wanted me to be a little rougher on the girl, you know, spit on her or pull her hair. I wasn’t really good at that. That was kind of uncomfortable for me.