Great Moments in Journalism: Losing It

Thanks for your many fine submissions to our Great Moments in Journalism project; please keep them coming. Today's nominee springs from the pen of Laura Sessions Stepp, famed chronicler of the wingman phenomenon. Anyway, the piece in question is a searing investigation into the age old question of why women tend to give it up for the first time during the summer. Hit the jump for some pure journalistic gold.

There were a lot of passages we could have chosen in this one, never mind all the uses of "lover," and "made love." But it's all encapsulated in the lead:

Sometimes the memory comes out of nowhere. Maybe you're sitting on your deck on a summer night after the kids have gone to bed. Or stuck in traffic after work, thinking about the 800 things you have to pack for vacation. A certain song comes on the radio, and all of a sudden it's summer, years ago. You're 16 or 17, and there's a boy, and you're looking at him and thinking, "It's going to happen. Not now, but soon."

And it did. He's the one you lost your virginity to. Remembering, you may feel a small smile tug at your face. Or a touch of sadness.

More girls lose their virginity in the summer than at any other time of year, according to researchers at Mississippi State University. There are all kinds of reasons. You remember. You had more free time and less supervision. You met a new guy at church camp whom you'd never see again, or were about to say goodbye to an old friend before you both went away to college. Maybe you were in love or maybe you weren't, but those sticky summer nights almost demanded surrender.

There's plenty more, but we warn you in advance, it doesn't get any better than this.

Hot Fun (or Not Fun) In the Summertime [WaPo]