There is no place on earth that has perfected the art of the booty call like Isla Vista has. On any given Friday night, bedrooms all over town are cashing in on the “Drink, dial, do me” dance that has become a staple of I.V. social living. And hey, if you’re lucky, you just might rack up that one special partner you mesh well enough with between the sheets to christen your fuck buddy.

If you spend enough time lounging around post-orgasm with your hottie of the month, however, a shift starts to occur. There, sexily enveloped Marilyn Monroe-style in 600-thread count Egyptian cotton sheets, high off the euphoria of the last half hour and blissfully engaged in post-coital pillow talk, something stirs within you. Whether you like it or not, they start to become human. They start to become someone you could… like? Date? Actually care about?

But wait. This is Isla Vista. There are no places for feelings in a land where “Relationships suck” is the official mantra. So, you chill out. Ignore the subtle pangs of emotion. Blow them off and move on like the badass that you are.

It’s not until those rare moments of humble reflection where you realize that it wouldn’t be so bad for said fuck buddy to be someone who makes you laugh, makes you think or even knows your last name. What would it be like, you wonder, to aim for something more?

Though commitment in all its forms repels the majority of UCSB’s college crowd, even the most steel-hearted players among us have toyed with the thought of emotional connection on those lonely, dateless nights at home.

Chances are, most of us are looking for the same thing in a relationship: the laid-back brazenness of sending the spontaneous “Fancy a fuck?” text message and knowing that they’ll deliver, coupled with the assurance of knowing that your partner likes you for more than your sweet ass. But such an intricate weaving of relational states eludes even the best of us when it’s easier to shut your mouth, suck it up and settle for what you get.

So what’s a physically ravenous, yet unashamedly human guy or girl on the brink of heightened sexual exploration to do? Achieving that perfect balance between freedom and companionship entails the trickiest of social endeavors: communication.

By lifting the barriers that guard our ability to give it to ’em straight, perhaps we can engage in that taboo discussion of what we want in a given relationship without the other person freaking out and running in the other direction. “Friends with benefits?” Done. “Be my girlfriend?” I’ll think about it. “Just sex?” Well, at least you’re honest — fuck me?

I say to hell with all this I’m-scared-of-getting-hurt/I-get-off-on-game-playing/I’m-too-set-in-my-pimpin’-ways bullshit that gets in the way of each and every single person around here from getting what they really want. I’ll bet my strappy sandal collection that most people’s ideal relationship lies somewhere between the two extremes most of us put up with being forced into.

Some people fantasize about straddling their lover during a heated moment of no-holds-barred bedroom revelry. I fantasize about straddling that deliciously ambiguous line between late-night lover and committed companion. Around these parts, the latter is far more scandalous.

Imagine: a beachside college community like ours inhabited by people who are sexually gratified, emotionally satisfied and… happy?

Damn. What a thought.

Don’t worry — Daily Nexus opinion editor Meghan Palma likes straddling her lovers, too.