Crystal Harris overshares about sex with Hef

Crystal Harris, the Playboy mogul's "runaway bride," tells the world about their sex life -- and things get ugly

By Mary Elizabeth Williams

Senior Writer

Published July 27, 2011 2:59PM (EDT)

Hugh Hefner
Hugh Hefner

Crystal Harris would like you to know she barely ever came into contact with Hugh Hefner's penis. On a Tuesday edition of Howard Stern's show, the Playmate, "Girls Next Door" star and woman who jilted Hugh Hefner just five days before their planned wedding last month divulged the intimate secrets of their not-so-intimate relationship. "He doesn't really take off his clothes. I've never seen Hef naked," she told Stern, a stunning admission from a woman who dated a man for two years.

But the details didn't stop there -- she told her host they'd only had sex once. And when Stern, in his typical prodding manner, asked, "Were you like, 'Aren't I sexy enough for this guy that he doesn't want to bang me?' Or were you like, 'Thank God?" she hastily assented to the latter. She also readily affirmed, with a squicked-out nod of the head, that she not only hadn't had an orgasm during what Stern described as a "horror situation" encounter, but that it only lasted "like two seconds." "Then I was just over it ... I just like, walked away. I'm not turned on by Hef, sorry." I think someone just got herself permanently exiled from The Mansion.

Harris sure seems to be trying to leverage her status as the "runaway bride" into a new reality gig lately. She's been enthusiastically doing the talk show rounds this week, telling Joy Behar how she's holding on to the three and a half carat engagement ring Hef gave her, and explaining on "The View" that Hef only wanted to get engaged for her sake anyway.

The image of Hef -- silk-robed, Pepsi-swilling, and eager to service a harem just as soon as the Viagra kicks in -- persists so mightily because Hefner himself encourages it. He's not some tamed old lion, smiling indulgently at the lassies young enough to be his great grand-daughters. Instead, he still presents himself as a rutting satyr, a guy who can "make love a couple of times a week." And surprise, that might not be exactly how it goes down.

The notion that image and reality might not have everything to do with each other isn't exactly shocking. Likewise, any 25-year-old might reasonably have her doubts about hitching her wagon to a man sixty years her senior -- no matter how generous the "allowance" she says he gave her was. And when that man is notoriously unwowed by the notion of monogamy, well, as Harris put it to Behar this week, "It didn't make sense to have more than one girlfriend but get married to one."

What is flat out uncool, however, is for a woman who's in no way been wronged by her almost-husband to badmouth his prowess to the world. He may be 85; he may be Hugh Freaking Hefner, the man who all but invented the word "playboy"; but he's still a human being. And by all accounts, a pretty decent one. And lady, you can't go complaining about how uncomfortable you were with his other girlfriends while simultaneously shuddering at the memory of that one time he briefly penetrated you.

No real person can possibly be sexy all the time. Not a hot 25-year-old blonde, let alone an octogenarian, But like his generations upon generations of bunnies, Hefner has built his whole persona on sexuality -- the youthful, ever-ready and rarin'-to-go all-night variety. It's a persona that's likely partially real, and largely clever aspirational image. Which makes Hef, in many ways, the ultimate Playmate.  

By Mary Elizabeth Williams

Mary Elizabeth Williams is a senior writer for Salon and author of "A Series of Catastrophes & Miracles."

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