My wife has gotten me into three-ways. I've been enjoying myself, though sometimes it's hard to figure out what goes where.
The erotic temperature of this blog post starts to decline after those first sentences because I'm talking about electrical switches. Sorry.
Our forty year old house mostly has old-fashioned standard light switches, not the more modern-looking "decorator" switches. So my wife went to Lowe's and bought a bunch of switches, both two-way and three-way.
She forgot that a couple of switches at the bottom of our stairs control lights which also are controlled by switches at the top of the stairs. Hence, today I went back to Lowe's to get a few more Cooper 3-Way Switch with Ground.
I was assisted by a guy I've encountered before in the electrical department. He's super-knowledgeable. In fact, today he told me that he worked as a electrician for many years.
Hearing that, I realized he was the perfect person to answer a question that had been on my mind ever since I picked up the first Cooper 3-Way Switch with Ground box.
"Why are these switches called 3-Way? Seems like they really are 2-Way, since the switches are for electrical devices controlled by two switches."
The ex-electrician furrowed his brow. "I don't know," he said. "Never thought about this before. But you're right. The switches allow a light to be turned on and off from two different locations."
I spent an unduly large amount of the rest of my day pondering the quasi (very quasi) erotic implications of this electrical device naming convention. When two people engage in sexual activity, we view that as a two-way.
The switches at the top and bottom of our stairs interact with each other similarly. One can turn on; one can turn off. Both can be turned on; both can be turned off.
However, a three-way involves, duh, three people.
Or seemingly, three switches. My electrical erotic imagination wasn't vivid enough to picture what sorts of playing around goes on with three switches all wired together. But I could easily picture humans doing... this and that.
Thanks to the Great God Google, who knows all, when I got home I was able to determine that my intuition was correct that something is amiss with calling a switch that shares electrical control with another switch a "3-Way."
Wikipedia's Multiway switching article says:
This article follows American usage. Readers in the UK should read "two-way" for the American "three-way" and "intermediate" or "crossover" switch for the American "four-way".
The British and other United Kingdom'ers make more sense with their electrical switch lingo. But we've got the edge on the electrical erotica front with our "three-way" and "four-way."