I was sixteen, a virgin, working at Vons as a bagger. One day an Italian woman named Monique was hired as a checker. Two honeydews sat on her chest; her ass was flat as a flour tortilla. She said she was twenty-six, but Tony the Butcher told me, “Don’t let her make-up fool ya kid, she’s over 30.”

    One night while taking out the trash, I slipped a bottle of Goldschläger into the bag and threw it in the dumpster. After work, I dug for the bottle, sparked a blunt, walked over and met Monique inside her truck.

    “Goldschläger, huh? Out of everything back there this is the best you could steal.” She took a swig. Gold flakes stuck to her lips. “You’re bad for sixteen. You got a girlfriend?”

    I took a fat hit and threw the roach out the window. I always dreaded this question. I never had a real girlfriend before. Sure, I had spidered on the swings with Carianne in the 1st grade, but we were just curious after seeing two 4th graders do it. It turned out to be uncomfortable and impossible to pump our legs together with any rhythm. Then there was Kristina in 2nd grade. I drew stick figures of us holding hands and inside a heart I wrote I like you, do you like me? Check yes or no. She checked yes. We held hands for a few recesses until my friends started picking me last for football, and suggested I’d probably have more fun jump roping with the girls. I had no choice but to let her go.

    In 5th grade, Jenifer and I played footsy under the lunch tables. I thought this meant we were pretty serious so I gave her a $10 promise ring I bought from the swap meet. Her mother said she was too young to date boys and made her give it back.

    7th grade, I used to secretly go to the movies with Shalyn, who at the time, was also dating my best friend Kyle. For most people, the live action film Inspector Gadget was pretty forgettable, but for me, it was when Shalyn finally asked, “Why haven’t you tried to kiss me?”

    “I don’t know, I guess, I didn’t think you’d want me to.” I gulped my drink and squirmed in the seat.

     “Have you ever French kissed a girl?”

     “Yea, duh, I mean–,” she grabbed my hair and her jaws opened like a python about swallow an ostrich egg. I put my hand on the small of her back as she probed my throat with her giraffe-like tongue. I was pretty sure she’d eventually reach the spinach quiche I had for lunch.

     “So, did you like it?”

     “Yea, it was uh, real cool.” I can’t believe the French kiss like that I thought. No wonder nobody likes them.

    8th grade, I tried having phone sex with Nicole. “O.K, so, I’m palming your boob, oh, your nipple is so hard.”                     

    Then she said, “I just put your dick in a bowl of melted chocolate. You know, the kind that turns to shell when you put it on ice cream. Now I’m going to suck it off.”

    I was silent for a moment then replied, “Hmm, I’m pretty sure that chocolate won’t harden if you put it on my penis.” But apparently, after doing a quick Google search–it works.

    9th grade I started selling pot. One day two 11th grade stoners named Ratski and Allison came up to buy a sack. Ratski was a dirty hippy and Allison had her tongue pierced and was notorious for giving the best blowjob at Patrick Henry.

     “So, we have a proposition for you. Allison and I don’t have any money, but, we think you’re cute, and…”

    “And what?”

    Allison whispered in my ear, “We’ll give you a blowjob after school if you give us a gram.”

    I burst into laughter. “Umm, I don’t think so”

     “Are you kidding me? “What are you, gay?”

    “No, I’d just rather have the twenty bucks, that’s all.”

    Monique stared at me as I thought about telling her the truth. That I didn’t have a girlfriend nor had I ever had a girlfriend. Then I remembered Tony’s advice, “You gotta be confident lil’ homie if you wanna get the bitches. Just be an asshole. Chicks love assholes.”

    I lit a cigarette and looked her in the eyes, “Psch, naw, I’m a playa’, I don’t have time for girlfriends.” She cracked up laughing.

     “Get out of here with that shit, you lil wanna-be Snoop Dogg. Look, I gotta go, I’ll see ya’ tomorrow.” She pushed me out the door and peeled off into the night.

    The next day, I was bagging groceries for Monique when she scanned a long cucumber. I gripped the green veggie, but she wouldn’t let go. “Come over tonight,” she stroked the cucumber with a giddy smile. “We’ll get drunk and watch a movie.”

    I yanked the cucumber away and threw it in a plastic bag, “Buy me a 40oz of Mickey’s and I’ll be there.”

    I bolted back to the meat department in search of Tony. Tony spent his checks on hookers at Adelitas– he knew everything about women.

     “Hey Tony, Monique invited me over for drinks tonight and I was wondering if you could give me a few tips.”

    He slowly looked up from his work like a demon who’d just been conjured from the underworld. Wiping his bloody hands on his apron he growled, “Listen lil’ homie, all you need to remember is wherever ya’ tongue goes, ya’ dick goes after.” He looked down and hacked a slab of veal into cutlets.

    I went home that night, watched porn for some pointer, and left a letter– Sleeping at Eric’s tonight Ma’, see you in the morning. I then hit up Pal Liquor for a box of Extended Pleasure condoms I was ready.

    Soon as I walked in her door, she grabbed my arm. We downed shots of peach Schnapps and she handed me a 40 of Mickey’s.

    “Nice place, how long you lived here?”

    “Not long– here, let me give you the tour,” she pulled me down the hall and opened a door draped with metallic-green Mardi-Gras beads. The room was lit by a cherry red lava-lamp that cast bubbly shadows on us. An N.W.A poster hung on the back wall. “Come here, have a seat,” she said tugging me to her bed.

    “Wow, you have a waterbed?” I poggoed up and down creating a set of waves beneath the zebra-print comforter.

     “Stop it, you’re making me seasick,” she pinched my arm. “I think we need some music to set the mood.” She got up and popped Chronic 2000 into a boom-box on the dresser. Dr. Dre’s voice boomed out the speakers, “Welcome to Death Row.” A cell door slammed shut, a synth started squealing, and the bass-line dropped. She came two-stepping back, bumping her shoulders to the beat and straddled me. I grabbed my 40 of Mickey’s and took a long, hard, gulp.

    “You’re nervous.”

    “Psch, what makes you think that,” I snaked my shaky arms around her waist.

    “Don’t worry, just let me take control,” she locked her fingers around my neck, drove her tongue into my mouth, tore off my shirt and we splashed into bed.

    Slowly raking her nails up my ribs, my abs spasmed, “Hey, I’m ticklish there.” Without a word, she stripped off her shirt and steered my hand to her chest. I had never cupped an unclothed breast before. It kinda reminded me of the water balloons I threw at the ice cream man after he doubled the price for Bomb Bags. I fished a condom from my pocket and tossed my pants on the floor. She smirked at my naked body as she shimmied out her shorts. God, I probably look like a coffee straw compared to all the men she’s been with.

    I fumbled to thread the portal into manhood. Poking around between her legs like a blind folded child trying to pin-the-tail on the donkey. “Here,” she took me in her hand and guided me in. Snoop started singing, “Ain’t Nuttin’ but a G-Thang.” With the suave of a suffocating mackerel I flopped around on her—it was over. We laid eye to eye, no smiles, no cuddles. “I guess I need some practice.” I said, then turned over and watched the mercury float like jellyfish in the lava lamp.

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