Friday, November 6, 2009

Lost in the Fog (Part 2) ‘A Brief History of Car Sex’

(TO MY FAMILY. DON’T READ THIS. You asked for warning. Here it is.)

Lost in the Fog
(Part 2)
‘A Brief History of Car Sex’

We didn’t have sex. Not yet.

As we leaned in towards the iPhone to map our whereabouts in the thick of the autumnal mist, our heads met. How odd the first time we touch should be with the front corner of our foreheads. Perhaps there had been an unconscious hug hello preceding it, but that didn’t count. This was the real thing. And it was sweet. Momentarily innocent. I wanted to stay here like two kids sharing an Etch-a-sketch. For once, I was appreciating the restricted space the car provided. I wanted to not be moving forward. Let me wallow in expectation, desire building like the steam from a witch’s cauldron.

I was not going to have sex. Not yet.

In fact, I’ve rarely ever had sex in cars. Never once in high school. (Probably because I never had sex in high school.) Thinking about it, I’ve only had sex three times in a car, which I expect is a far lower number than your average red-blooded American, and an insanely small number for a guy still single and 39.

The first time was “breaking up-sex” with a girlfriend of many years. It was just after New Years and freezing out. We clumsily climbed into the back seat of her parents’ Buick. We weren’t allowed to stay in the same room in her folk’s house, so we were starved for physical connection after a week of family Christmas activities. And we knew this would be the last time. It was almost solemn. But we did it anyway. We stopped in a lot en route to the train station which would serve as the departure point from her in my life. She found some way to get on top of me, but it was awkward, and cold and frankly a miserable way to end what had been a dear and loving, intimate and formative relationship. I wanted to gaze into her green eyes and survey the beautiful landscape I was giving up sole authorship of, but I wasn’t afforded that opportunity.

The second time, I nailed a no-name hippie chick who was passing through Blue Lake, California where I was spending the summer learning to be a clown – taught by a past master of the Russian Circus. My weird life. My roommate was a stoner who had as great an appreciation for ‘Humbolt County’s Finest’ as I had fear of the stuff. You’d never guess I’d be inhaling from a stem even once a few years later. Luckily, curiosity hasn’t killed this cat yet. I didn’t want to indulge in the purple haze back then because of a general paranoia I’d developed around drugs (though I’ve never been paranoid while on drugs ironically). I wasn’t specifically thinking about the ‘This is what your brain looks like on drugs' girl in the wife-beater smashing up the kitchen, but I think you combine one part crazy ass Rachael Leigh Cook with a two parts disapproving Nancy Reagan and strange things bake in this boy’s skull. And though I’ve since lost my fear of the sticky green stuff, my roommate’s general comatose stance (if you can call it that) for the entire summer further scared me off from so much as a puff, even though I was planted smack dab in smokers nirvana all summer.

Knowing he rarely left his room in that state, and fearing his stoned eavesdropping through the paper thin, 70s, fake wood panel walls, I drove out with this girl to a thick of redwoods and pulled off to the side of the road. I put the top down on my newly acquired, used convertible so we would be less confined. The chilly summer stars danced above us through the crisp air. It could have been romantic with the right person, but I consciously decided never to ask her so much as her first name. Hell, I don’t even know how I indicated I wanted to sneak off with her from the dinner we’d met at. And as this was the closest I’d ever come to anonymous sex, I felt an extraordinary freedom. I could ask her for anything I wanted without shame or fear of repercussions. I could be the beast I fantasized about. I thought of a way to take advantage of the air rights I’d obtained by lowering the roof (how often can you stand in a car and have sex?) So I dialed up my database of hackneyed lines from the half a dozen VHS porn tapes in my repertoire and made my ask.

Request denied.

She was probably afraid I’d hit her rainbow wool knit skullcap and ruin the thing. And in truth anticipating velocity and trajectory in these matters can puzzle even a trig whiz. So we had a fumbled straight ahead brief bit of humping. She sat facing nearly straight ahead and I greeted her in some contortion. Sadly, we were still quite cramped as convertibles aren’t known for their capacious back seats – even if we did have some headroom.

I never even got to see the stars.

The third time, I was first-dating an experienced JDater, sophisticated and slinky. I was fitting in a glass of wine before a birthday party, so I had few expectations. I’d recently had a drug-addled run-in with a Craigslist girl who requested I pick her up at a gas station as the first stop to a night that got weirder and more dangerous with each passing minute. I was still trying to digest the whole scene by writing the heck out of it, and when this new dame asked me what I was working on, I got coy. I said perhaps I’d tell her on our second date. This was not a story for mixed company – especially one I wanted to make a good impression upon. So, of course, she was intrigued. Still, I really didn’t think it appropriate to discuss the details of the night with the waif who turned out to be a hooker whom I didn’t have sex with just a few weeks earlier. The crack smoking aspect of that wild ride might turn her off as well. But she seemed to be getting annoyed with my elusiveness. I figured the date would crash and burn if I told the story, but it was spiraling down because of my not sharing anyway, so I figured what the hell. I would try being completely honest even if this sealed the fate of the date. I fully expected she'd never want to see me again long before I got to “The End”.

As I dug into the story, her lawerly legs began to rub against mine and I began to realize that this tale was somehow an aphrodisiac. I didn’t realize just how potent it was until I walked her to her car. I took advantage of the newfound chemistry and kissed her good night. Not just a peck, but a full court press against her car door. What did I have to lose? Ready to leave after a good smacker like that, I was completely surprised when she opened the door. The rear door. We slipped into the back with an unspoken excitement and maneuvered around the back seat into a near prone position in her black Saab SUV (finally a vehicle with a little bit of room to maneuver!) And, parked right at a meter on Hillhurst, with hipsters strutting by, we had a hot and panting shag as she braced herself against the tinted passenger side window behind her. Not a soul paused to stare, even though the vehicle was well lit by the amber arc lights above. Somehow, emerging through the mutual laughter of delighted surprise, I excused myself to the birthday party I’d already told her I had to attend. Strangely, my speedy departure seemed most appropriate. I don’t know how you follow an act like that. Even more bizarre, we ended up dating for a while and we’re still friends today.

So with a mere 33% success rate, I wanted to ride the anticipation as long as I could. And frankly, I still didn’t even have a greenlight for a kiss. For Godssakes, we’d met less than an hour ago. No number of martinis could account for that.

But maybe the fog had gone to her head and I could...

Wait. In all those scary movies, it’s the kids who have sex who’re the first to lose their heads. So we were taking out lives in our own hands if I let things go forward.

(TO BE CONTINUED)

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