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The Daily Tar Heel

Comedy tour teaches sex ed

“The Wonderful World of Boning” is a comedy tour aimed at boldly exploring sensitive subjects such as sex education and reproductive health by making people laugh. The show will start at 9 p.m. at Local 506 tonight.

The tour began as Alptraum’s idea — she has been working in sex education since she was 14.

“I’ve worked in sexual education as a volunteer HIV pretest counselor, which is the first stage of counseling before someone gets an HIV test,” Alptraum said. “For several years, I was as a sex educator with teenagers in an after school program in New York City and I also spent time working a rape crisis center.”

After working to solve sexual health problems, Alptraum conceived “The Wonderful World of Boning” show. At each tour stop, she invites a famous friend to perform with her for a set that is centered around making fun of out-of-date sexual education videos from the ‘80s such as “A Family Talks About Sex,” “What’s Happening to Me?” and “You, Your Body, and Puberty.”

Sophomore Addison Lalier said comedy is an effective way to communicate when discussing sex education.

“It’s not the most glamorous topic, so people definitely tend to zone out and disregard lessons,” she said. “I think adding comedy helps keep an audience engaged and inevitably helps them retain the information.”

For her show in Chapel Hill, Alptraum invited her friend, actress and comedian Sharron Paul, who has appeared on “The Tyra Banks Show” and acted in “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and “Girls are Roommates.”

For a subject nearly everyone is interested in, there is an abundance of misinformation about sexual health. Paul said that a comedy tour was the best way to get people talking about it constructively.

“In my personal life, everyone wants to talk about sex all the time,” she said. “We talk about it in different ways, but we are pretty much willing to talk about it.”

“The Wonderful World of Boning” lampoons the awkward and low-budget videos from sex education from the ‘80s, but there is still work to be done in the modern day. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 27 states still do not mandate that schools include sex education. Twenty-five states still stress abstinence and abstinence-only philosophy in their curriculum.

For Alptraum those numbers don’t add up.

“I think that one of the problems is that, for instance, we don’t treat math as something where we don’t talk about math until you are 18, and then hand you a calculus textbook, because 18-year-olds should be able to do calculus,” she said.

“But that is how we treat sex! We don’t talk about it until you are 18 or until you are married, and then we say ‘Congratulations, here is a condom, you know what to do.’”

arts@dailytarheel.com

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