The other night I was at a birthday party in Williamsburg. It was a great party. The DJ was amazing, playing all the right 90s dance jams. The alcohol flowed freely, and everyone was good looking with cool jobs. It was one of those perfect Brooklyn nights when you remember why you moved to this city in the first place. Before going into the party I went to a bodega to stock up on cheap beer and cigarettes. Standing in line was a cute hipster boy in the proverbial black horn-rimmed frames. He gave me the once over and a smile. I thought, “Yeah, New York. I got this.”
Ten minutes after entering the party, horn-rimmed glasses dude showed up with two more friends in tow. He came over to me and said, “I had a feeling you’d be here.”
We got to talking and the conversation led to the inevitable question: “What do you do?” He had just started his own magazine, and I told him I wrote a weekly column for The L. He did not ask me what kind of column, and I gave him no further information. I had decided before going to the party that I wouldn’t lead with my sexy foot. This was an experiment to see if I could maneuver my way through social situations without relying on how “exciting” my sexy job is. I am more than a sex columnist god dammit! If I wanted, I could be a funny and cool paralegal. Right?
We went out to the roof for a cigarette and finally—after what seemed like hours of flirting, but was probably just like 45 minutes—we started making out.
It was terrible.
Normally, I would say there is no such thing as a good or bad kisser, rather that kissing, like sex, is about compatibility and communication. It’s all about finding the right person who digs your own unique style.
However, this guy was lapping at my face like he was a dog and I was a left-over pork chop that fell off the kitchen table. I tried to do my usual tactic of saying, “Let me kiss you,” and then showing him how I liked to be kissed through demonstration, but unfortunately he didn’t let me take the lead. In spite of my best efforts he kept up his 13-year-old boy technique of shoving his tongue in my mouth. He’d take it out, shove it in, take it out, shove it in, over and over again. Then he grabbed my ass and started to tongue-bathe my neck. He came up for air just long enough to say, “Let’s get out of here.”
I was not going anywhere with this guy.
Instead, I decided this was the time to let him know exactly what kind of column I write. My thinking was that if he found out I’m the author of a personal sex column he was gonna re-think wanting to take me home. This has been the case in the past.
I said, “So you never asked me what kind of stuff I write.”
“I didn’t. Sorry about that. Let me guess, 800 words on hair dryers?”
Yep, definitely not going home with this guy. Who did he think he was?
“No. I write about my sex life. Every week.”
He pulled back and studied my face.
“Bingo,” I thought.
“That’s awesome. Are you going to write about me then?”
My plan had back-fired.
This is the thing about writing a sex column—there are very few men who understand it. Most of the guys I encounter fall into two categories: those that are intimidated by the column and all the sex involved, and then those that are narcissistic enough to think they deserve a spot dedicated to their love-making skills. I had hoped this guy fell into category number 1, but I’d misjudged him and he was really the latter.
Let me take a step back and re-define my category making here, because it’s a little more nuanced, and there’s a sub-category. There are also the guys I’ve slept with who’ve never read the column. Once, I was at a bar and a guy I had written about walked in with a group of friends. We hadn’t seen each other in months, and we certainly hadn’t seen each other since his story came out. I hadn’t portrayed him in the best light, and I thought I should leave before he saw me. But, I was there to meet a friend and she hadn’t shown up yet. So instead I chose the most reclusive part of the bar to sit down and tried to act invisible. No dice. He spotted me right away and came over. I braced myself for an ugly confrontation. Then, he gave me a hug! I worried his embrace was some kind of trick.
“Lacy! I haven’t see you in ages! How are you? Can I buy you a drink?”
Turns out he hadn’t read the story. In fact, he hadn’t read anything I’ve ever written.
On the one hand, I was grateful. On the other, I thought, “If you wanna sleep with me again—or even in the first place—you gotta invest a little in not only what I do for a living, but also how I identify myself in the world. I would go to see your stupid art show or band, so you gotta read my writing.”
Herein lies the paradox about sex writing. And, believe me, I know it’s not fair. I want men to like me for who I am, and not because my life revolves around sex. But who I am is a person who’s life revolves around writing and thinking about sex.
Let me put it this way: the easiest way to get into my pants is to compliment me on writing. The guys who have said to me, “I thought that one line was so funny,” or “You’re a great storyteller, and it’s refreshing to hear a woman’s perspective with such a strong voice,” are the guys who I’ve bed the fastest.
To be honest though, no one has ever said those lines to me. I thought I would put it in here incase anyone reading was curious about what I really like.
Back at the party, I gently pushed the tongue-shover away from me.
I said, “I don’t think it would be fair to you to take me home, until you’ve read a few of the stories I written. I wouldn’t want to give you the wrong impression. Why don’t we do this, you go home read the column, maybe jerk off a bit, and if you’re still down, then I’m down.”
He pouted for a few minutes but said ok.
I never heard from him again. If he hated the column—or just never read—it I’ll never know. Either way, I think it was for the best.
Maybe being a sex columnist isn’t so bad for my dating life after all. Maybe the column is the best litmus test I’ve ever had for weeding out the bullets well dodged.
Follow Lacy Warner on twitter @laceoface