I did a bad, bad thing once a long time ago.
It wasn’t my idea. I was just good at writing things. That’s why Vinny and Ray (not their names) came and asked me to do it.
Ray was my roommate, but he primarily hung out with Vinny, our next door neighbor, and his roommate Jeremy (not his name either). It was Jeremy, whom everyone called “Jer,” that was the problem.
It would take too long to clue you in to the big picture, so just try to imagine our life as a kind of Lutheran Big Bang Theory that involved four geeky guys and an all-guys dorm instead of four geeky physicists and a New York apartment. That will be close enough.
Anyway, there we were, when suddenly Jer starts to get a lot of attention from a rather well-endowed blond girl from the all-girls’ dorm. Not that it was completely undeserved. Jeremy ran. And jogged. And worked out. And he did it with his tightly wound wiry body stuffed into 70s-guy short-shorts (white with red piping if I remember) and a matching tank top. And, in the spring of our sophomore year, this started to work for him.
And that was not working for Vinny.
It all came to a head one night after a dance when Blondie had been virtually chewing a hole in Jeremy’s shoulder during the obligatory playing of “You’re Still a Young Man, Baby” for the last slow dance (as if anyone needed a reminder or motivation then). Jeremy was alternating between peering down her shirt and stealing a glance at anyone who would make eye contact with him so that he could give them a knowing “Who da man?” look for further public recognition of his new-found savoir faire. Then, Blondie practically drug him out the door by his hair without even waiting for the last song, which was, appropriately, “She’s a Brick House.”
Some time later in the early AM, Jer burst into his and Vinny’s room. He strutted around like a rooster in the coop doing the Funky Chicken and started to crow about his evening. Vinny was not amused. Nobody likes to be woken up to have something like that rubbed in your face.
“Oh my god, Vin” Jer crooned in extacy, “They’re the size of bowling balls!” He cupped his hands to the appropriate size just in case Vinnie was missing the picture. Vin pursed his lips and tried not to look impressed. But his eyebrows gave him away. Jer continued.
“She virtually threw me on the bed. We started kissing and rolling around …”
Things were starting to get interesting. Vinnie sat up.
Vinny stuck his glasses on so that he could catch every detail.
“Yeah? And then what?”
“We made out.” Jer’s voice squeaked a little.
There was silence. Vinny cocked his head like a dog that can’t quite figure out where that high little squeak is coming from.
“Until … I got booted at curfew.”
Jer tried to look as if this were obvious, and this is when it became apparent to Vince that the reason that the making out had gone on so long was that Jer had absolutely no idea what to do next.
“Are you guys gonna do it?” Vince asked.
“Do it?” Jer stopped strutting. It was as if Vince had just gone from the “Double-dare” directly to “Triple Dog Dare” in A Christmas Tale.
“Yeah, you idiot, fuck.”
Jer looked dumfounded at the prospect that this word, which he used casually all the time, might actually pertain to a specific physical act in which he might soon be engaged. “We just made out,” he stammered.
“She threw you on the bed?”
“And stuck your hand up her shirt.”
“And you two rolled around on the bed?”
“Yeah. A lot.”
“For an hour?”
“We rolled around a lot.”
“You gotta be careful, Jer,” Vince ventured in that helpful roommate kind of way. “You’re gonna miss out.”
“What do you mean?” Jer looked alarmed.
“I mean, I think she wants it. And if you’re not going to give it to her, she’s going to get it from someone else. If you go back over there, you better be prepared.”
Jer looked more alarmed.
“Better pick up some condoms from the Health Center,” Vince continued in full advisory mode as he enjoyed watching the bravado drain our of his roommate’s face, “You don’t want to get her pregnant. And besides, she might have a STD.”
That did it. “Oh my god,” shuddered Jer, who was a germaphobe. He was now both genuinely frightened and genuinely relieved that he now had a reason to not put himself in the compromising position of admitting to his roommate and demonstrating to Blondie that he was a virgin, “I hadn’t thought of that. But you can’t get a STD from kissing, can you?”
Vince paused. And that was where it all began.
[Continued in the next installment.]