Considering the young girl’s fate in the previous post caused me to reflect on my own experience with the opposite sex at a younger age.
Some men attract women like flowers attract bees; others can’t wish for a sniff of the blossom. As best I can remember, play was segregated during my early years. Girls did not join us in the swamps, woods, or streets: we got too dirty. Later, after moving to a new neighborhood, I had as many female as male friends, but we all played the same less-dirty games. I had heard of sex, but had no idea when or how to do it. Besides, we were too young and having fun doing other things. I did attract one girl at the right age (some of the lines in What Gives? work), but it did not last long. Following that, there was a long drought filled with fantasy and frustration, during which I seemed to attract only grandmothers and children (all merely harmless moments of friendship or companionship). I did not pursue women to find company for the moment, because I felt the need to find a permanent partner and friend. Few candidates showed up on my radar screen, and the few that did were invariably of the Different Drum variety. The lyrics of the Jim Croce song, Thursday, applied to every serious interest: “I was looking for a lifetime lover, and you were looking for a friend”.
Twice in my life, women have tried to seduce me (that could be the all-time record for low achievement). Once, I was on a train to Norway; in Sweden, a girl invited me to leave the train with her. I was too chicken, fearing foreign laws. The second time was in the army. It was time of increasing female recruitment, none of which were allowed in combat units. Being a non-combat aviation unit, mine had many young recruits in the lower ranks. As with college, most young girls sought a husband. I was single, was an officer, and drove a Porsche. What more could a young, single girl from a poor background want? One Saturday, when I was alone in my office, one attractive, well-built specialist in a tight tee shirt, abandoned her mop in the corridor and plopped onto my lap. When she tried to kiss me, I turned my head and asked (notice that I did not say “ordered”) her to return to her mop and forget what she had attempted. At another stage in life, I might have been tempted; unbeknownst to “Sam”, I had something better. As Paul Newman once famously said, "Why go out for hamburger, when you can have steak at home?"
Oh, by the way, I lied earlier: three women have tried to seduce me. She gave out and I gave in. I’m still together with the best friend any man could want to attract...and keep. The steak at home is still the best...
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.