Sure, Russia remains a homophobic, human-rights nightmare ... but do Americans get a day off work to screw around?
Russia is celebrating its eighth annual ‘day of conception,' where employees are urged to take the day off to have procreative sex. The strange celebration is "part of a gesture to increase Russia’s struggling birth rate," The Independent explains.
In past years, prizes — mainly Jeeps — have been given to couples who give birth exactly nine months from conception day. The unofficial holiday is mainly observed in Russia's eastern region of Ulyanovsk (birthplace of Lenin), where the Governor has been pushing employers to recognize the scheme as a legitimate reason to miss work.
Nothing about this makes any sense to me, logistically. Why can't Russian couples just have sex at night, like normal working people the world over? And considering the fact that the average sex lasts about five to seven minutes, isn't a whole day for getting busy a little excessive?
Obviously, the idea is more symbolic than practicality-based. Like in many industrialized countries, Russians are dying quicker than they're being born, prompting quite a social/political panic over women whose uteri stay empty.
Although Russia seems to be the only country with a take-off-work-for-sex day, many countries have launched their own versions of fertility campaigns. In 2010, the South Korean government designated the third Wednesday of every month “Family Day" and closed down offices at 7 PM.
Most bizarre campaign probably goes to Singapore, where a song produced by Mentos mints in 2012 urged citizens to "do their civic duty" and make love for Singapore. The smooth jam features a woman sexily crooning "It's National Night..." while a male voice raps things like "The birthrate won't spike itself."