What follows is a response to Lt. Ilia's latest posts. I do not have many memorable lines to share, but I will share the story of my love life. I write this at the risk of confirming Ilia's suspicions and boring all of you to tears. I am taking her bait and daring to go into vague detail about my lengthy sexual history. It is lengthy because it now spans three full decades; this does not mean that I am very experienced. The events below are in chronological order, to the best of my recollection. I've omitted names; trust me when I tell you I remember them all.
Close call: At a swimmer's house, shampooing her hair in the downstairs bathroom with her parents nearby, she showed me her breasts and let me touch them. Her parents were of the mind that we'd been in there too long and called us out; I never got that chance again. [This might have been for the better; even at thirteen her little black book was quite full, and it had many names with stars beside them...]
First time: I was fourteen; she was sixteen. She said, "I'm horny." I had never even heard that word before then; I added it to my vocabulary immediately afterward. She turned up pregnant (by me) weeks later. Her foster father compelled her to get an abortion, then he informed me that I would be free to see her again, just as soon as I got castrated. I took a pass on that one.
Another close call: After becoming the boy who batted .1000, with such a mortifying result, my "sex life" went through a mortification of its own. As a freshman in high school, things got hot and heavy between me and a young lady. There was a lot of necking and grinding with our clothes on; she wanted more and found it elsewhere. [Given her reputation before we dated, this might also have been a very good thing...]
Second lover: A cheerleader in Mr. Seay's science class took pity on me in the aftermath of my previous close call. She thought I was cute and was impressed that I was not at all intimidated by her--"Hey little cheerleader!" was my everyday greeting for her. I rode the bus home with her one day; her parents were both working and we had at least a couple of hours. We were necking and so forth when she asked me, "Where's the cat at?" Naif and literalist that I was, I looked around the room for the Felis cattus. I soon learned a good bit about double entendre and figures of speech. The strong feelings I subsequently developed for her cursed me for the following fifteen years. [I was in love without her most of that time...] She left me after taking an interest in an older guy; he sometime later physically abused her. What an asshole!
Third lover: One of my younger sisters' friends decided that she wanted me for a day. She was cute enough and horny enough, so I went along. We hit four or five different spots; the first one found me thoroughly embarrassed when her sister walked right in. At the end of each session she said, "Thank you!" which struck me as bizarre because I thought we had been in the deal together. The next day she made it clear that she had no further use for me, and I did not really miss her after that.
Fourth lover: This one could have gotten me arrested. Her older stepsister had taken a shine to me, so she had to have me. I was nineteen; she was thirteen. Her mother had no problem with that. We'd routinely stop at one of the picnic tables or one of the benches behind the backstop at the aptly-named Bushey Park, then I'd walk her the rest of the way home. One day she told me she was pregnant and broke up with me. I talked to her mother to try to prevent a second abortion for which I'd have to take the blame. She informed me that her daughter was and had been on the pill; no pregnancy; no problem.
Fifth lover: The older stepsister mentioned above decided that she wanted me despite my having fallen for her little sister's seduction; she also didn't let the fact that she was engaged to a friend of mine stop her. We went to his family's campground one weekend. It came time to take a shower; we walked to the public facilities there. We had to share the shampoo, so I went into the women's side with her and took an adjacent stall. There was a two-by-two cinder block hole at floor level in the wall between the stalls. I remarked to her that the water on the floor made a good mirror; she replied, "The mirror works both ways!" That was another close call; I never even kissed her until the night before she moved in with me.
The evening my fifth lover moved in with me, we were consummating our relationship when my second lover showed up. Her sudden appearance was in response to a letter I had written her two months earlier, which I was under the impression she should have received seven weeks prior. I had (evidently) given up hope for her or lost faith in her; when she told me that she had just read the letter that day and that it had hit home, I was totally screwed. I couldn't kick #5 out, and I couldn't level with her that I cared more for this other girl than I did for her. #2 decided to give me the necessary space and time to deal with the issue; by the time I did (a year and a half later, when #5 moved back in with her mother after her abusive stepfather left), #2 was otherwise occupied pretending to be either a JAP or a member of some dude's harem (of one).
Sixth lover: In college I became slightly attracted to a French woman who, like me, was several years older than our classmates (23). We were in her dorm room sort of getting down to business when she mentioned some recent lover who was an Algerian football (soccer) player or something. The timing was terrible and the thought a complete turn-off. She persisted and proceeded to lick practically every inch of my body, which eventually got me going. I turned in a rather weak performance, but what really upset her was when she came back from the bakery the next morning and found me gone. [We remained friendly despite that; I even accompanied her on a mission to Philadelphia, about which I may one day write.]
Seventh lover: Right around my twenty-sixth birthday, after my academic failure was complete, I was living with my brother and his fiancee and another guy. I had just started painting in Tenleytown. My soon to be sister-in-law had a friend who liked me at first sight. After some flirting and cooing and such, I decided I could like her back. I went to Lake Needwood one afternoon and carved our initials in a tree. That Saturday, before I went to do some paralegal work (I worked part-time, on and off, for my father's two-time attorney), I took her to the tree and asked her to go steady with me. She assented, we kissed passionately, then I took her home and headed to work.
When I got to the client's house, he asked if we could go up the road and get cigarettes. I agreed, and we drove to a nearby gas station. He pulled up to one of the pumps, right behind a familiar-looking car. It was #2's white 442; I almost had a heart attack. I was thinking, "Here we go again..." but I still got out and said, "Hello!" She was obviously amazed at the way I was dressed; she had grown accustomed to seeing me with disheveled hair, in a t-shirt and torn blue jeans (I was grunge before grunge was grunge). Once I established why I was dressed up (and when she got her bearings), I asked her what she'd been up to. She pointed to the front passenger seat of her car; in the child safety seat was a pretty tow-haired two-year-old. She smiled at me, and I remember thinking that she (or someone quite similar) should have been my daughter.
I took that remarkable, coincidental encounter as a sign; I was free of my promise to love #2 forever. I figured that meant #7 just might be the one (yeah, I know...). Within two weeks she gave me her virginity; we spent the next four years determining that we were not meant to be together forever. When she left me after I aborted an attempted return to college, I wrote one of my bad poems:
I remember how it was when, no matter the time of day; my lovely A*****l would fall fast asleep in my arms, when we were through making love;
I remember how it burned when she learned I was unworthy, of the respect one should have for one's mate or a fellow human being;
I remember how she left me without sleeping even a wink, the last time we made love;
Business as usual; maybe she'll see me around; she hoped not...
So began and ended my Jewish dating experience.
Eighth lover: Maybe a week later, I was with the Tenleytown crew, riding in Ike's van that had an exhaust leak somewhere on the inside. Corky got it in his head that we should stop for a beer or two or three. We ended up at a little bar and grill somewhere between Olney and Glenmont, MD. The waitress was a gal I knew from high school; rumor had it back then that we had been lovers, but we had never gone past first base together. It was nice to see her and vice versa; she gave me her phone number and told me, "Call me soon." I recall Corky being sort of impressed at how that went down; I had gone from near despair to "Let's get it on!" in practically no time at all.
On our first "date," she paid for a flying lesson for me at one of the smaller regional airports. It was an unforgettable experience that sparked my creativity and spurred me to produce another bad poem. I won't inflict it on you here, but I'll say it was cliché and involved happy landings.
We made love that night, after she was done with work. Her mother had her (three!) kids for the weekend. The situation could not work; she was hung up on the kids' father and I couldn't see me dealing with that and his children. I bowed out gracelessly...
Almost exactly a year later, #2 tracked me down again. She said she hadn't stopped thinking about me since that day at the gas station. She said how she had fully expected me to interrupt her wedding; I pointed out that I hadn't received an invitation (or seen any notice). She talked about how her marriage was as good as over; she wanted to see me. I gave her directions to the place I was staying near Georgetown University; she left work early one day and came by. She liked what she saw: t-shirt; blue jeans with no holes; not bad looking balding head. She had to have me. I got caught up in the moment: I had let her go completely; she had finally come back to me (yeah, I know again...).
We were in the throes of passion when an overwhelming sense of guilt and shame and horror hit me--coitus interruptus--"I can't do this!" I had sunk to the lowest depths in my pursuit of what I thought would be the highest heights. I told her that she had to go be married. I told her that she had to go down every road possible to work things out with her (two) kids' father. I told her if that didn't work, she had to knock down trees, make new roads and go down them. If that failed, then she was to go down all those roads again. I started to drink heavily regularly after that; I wanted nothing more to do with Love.
Ninth lover: A customer at the truck stop I found myself working at in 2003 decided she wanted me. I obliged, to my dismay and regret. She hadn't much of a come-on, and I couldn't get into it without one. Worst sex ever...
Tenth lover: I let an older woman seduce me; she was no great shakes, but she knew just how to treat a man (tip of the hat to Ronnie McDowell). She got possessive; I ran. [She kept a monster dildo on her nightstand; it made me feel very small...]
Eleventh lover: A meddlesome coworker asked me what I thought about a customer who was wearing pajamas. I made the mistake of saying, "She's cute," which is a line that works more often than not when delivered properly (who doesn't want to look "cute?"). She was another older woman; there ensued a bit of a competition between her and #10; they both lost.
Twelfth lover: Another customer, whose older sister was a coworker, was unhappily married to some guy who wanted to play video games all the time. She asked me if I wanted to go shoot some pool after work. After shooting pool and drinking beer, etc, we went to my place. She wanted me; I told her she was too married for my tastes. She threw him out the next day, and we started seeing each other. She screamed, "Oh, Peter!" a lot in the following months, in a very good way. I was going to start getting serious with her (I had the nerve to call #2's work phone after hours and leave a message, "The wedding's in June; maybe I'll send you an invitation."). I planned to bring her with me on vacation to meet my siblings. Then fate intervened.
Ultimate lover: Another coworker sort of caught my eye. I had known of her for a couple of years, but she had been otherwise occupied and I didn't bother. She had worked at the store several years before I started there; she had just finished her second BA and had come back to the store to ease her transition from student to worker. We were working a shift together behind the counter, and I was attempting to solve a quote-acrostic to kill time. She came over to my side just as I was struggling with a clue: Greyhound-like dog; 7 letters. She looked at the puzzle for a second and said, "Whippet!" It fit and facilitated completion of the rest of the puzzle. I knew right then that there was trouble afoot; we complemented one another perfectly.
One day the following week, she drove me to a nearby town to pick up a gift I'd gotten #12 for Mother's Day; riding beside her felt so right, like nothing in my life had ever been right before. We took the gift to my parents' house to keep in the garage. She and my father spoke and smoked together. A day or so later, my father told me he had been really impressed with my friend; I told him, "So am I." I wrote her a letter suggesting that I might have feelings for her and that it might be a big mistake for me to marry #12. She wrote back that she agreed, then she mentioned a vivid dream she had about (our) tow-headed kids playing in the yard. This had come on the heels of her waking up completely sober--after having passed out shit-faced drunk--bolting upright and shouting, "Oh my God! He's the One!" [Imagine that!]
The day of her graduation arrived; I had to work during the ceremony, but another meddlesome coworker suggested that I go to one of the local honky-tonks with them that night to help them celebrate. I met her at her house beforehand, we partied a little bit, then we went to celebrate with our coworker. Afterward I spent the night at her house, in the guest bedroom; we have been together ever since. [Sorry, no more details...]
All's well that ends well, right???