The long and short of it

A survey suggests that American men may lag behind their Brazilian brothers in penis length.

Published January 25, 2001 8:22PM (EST)

It's a slow news day in Brazil when the major newsmagazine Istoe publishes a cover story on the nation's obsession with large penises. The controversial article, which contains a survey concluding that Brazilian men sport longer schlongs than American men do, has males of both countries reaching for the tape measure.

According to the research conducted by Brazilian urologist Paula Palma, the size of your average Brazilian boner reaches 5.7 inches (14.5 cm), whereas the average measurement from an American tube steak lags behind at a measly 5 inches (12.9 cm).

"The tendency is that Brazilian penises are bigger," Palma told Reuters, no doubt with pride in his voice. "But American men shouldn't be upset about this small difference."

Palma claims that a man really needs only a 2.7-inch penis to enjoy intercourse with a woman because only the first 3.1 inches of the vagina are sensitive. The rest of the vagina, the depths of which have often been plumbed by well-hung porn stars, is devoid of sensitivity, added Palma, and can experience pain from such monster penises.

One might ask Palma, "So if small penises work just as well as larger ones, and if size doesn't really matter, why the hell do the survey in the first place?"

One would have to wait in line to criticize the man. His numbers are already in dispute: The tests were conducted on 150 Brazilian men, but his American penis stats were borrowed from a 1997 study by the American Urological Association.

Palma has another vocal detractor in his own country. A survey of 2,188 penises in southern Brazil conducted by Dr. Bayard Santos revealed that the average johnson clocked in at a hefty 5.9 inches (15 cm), half a centimeter longer than Palma's results. Santos knows his way around a penis, having written the essential bedside book "The Measure of Man."

Playing up the size differences between American and Brazilian units is pointless, according to Santos, who insists that for a woman, length is less important than width. Anything with less than a 3.5-inch circumference, therefore, just isn't going to cut it with the ladies.

Santos also believes that a large trouser snake is an important symbol of masculinity, and defends the practice of penis enlargement as a benefit to self-esteem.

As luck would have it, Santos also practices penis enlargement. His latest project, a bid for the Guinness Book of Records, is a man's penis that Santos has enlarged from 4.3 inches to an impressive 10.6 inches.

(Santos can be reached through the usual channels.)

By Jack Boulware

Jack Boulware is a writer in San Francisco and author of "San Francisco Bizarro" and "Sex American Style."

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