Untotaled: Stepping 46 (February 14th, 1969) The Pain in Pleasure… December 20, 2014

  Jonathots Daily Blog

(2449)

(Transcript)

Her name was Belinda.

She was about two rungs down the ladder of popularity from me, promoted by the horrendous high school caste system.

She liked me a lot.

I liked her, but of course, I would never go against the feudal structure of High School U. S. A., to ask her out on a date. I would never survive the ridicule and humiliation.

But I got lonely around Valentine’s Day.

My dad was sick and dying. One of the guys in our music group quit because his girlfriend thought he was taking too much time with us, and I had no idea whatsoever on what geometry was all about.

So I quietly asked Belinda out on a date, hoping that because she was so devoted in my direction, there might be some necking involved. She was one of those farm girls, raised on Bible principles, but was willing to renegotiate some of the terms on a Saturday night.

I wanted to neck.

I had kissed girls, but had never sustained long sessions of smooching and my curiosity had overtaken me. So I selfishly decided to take advantage of poor Belinda.

She was thrilled and promised not to tell anybody about our date because I told her we “needed to see how it worked out.”

I took her to a drive-in movie, which in 1969 was code for “we’re gonna mess around.”

It took me nearly thirty minutes to work up the courage to put my arm around her, and then I was afraid to move it and therefore contracted some horrible cramps in my muscles, which continued through the entire evening.

It was easy to get her to start kissing. She had thin lips so the first couple of times I got mostly teeth. But after a minute or so we got the hang of it, and she started slipping her tongue in my mouth, which was relatively new to me.

Adapting the phrase, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do,” I concluded, “When in France do as the French do.”

We were about ten minutes into the session when I realized that one of us had really stale breath. It wasn’t really horrible–that dried smell of garlic baloney and over-chewed gum.

I persisted.

She really got into it–so much so that she unbuttoned her blouse, inviting me to see how “alive the hills really were.”

I thought about it. After all, I was a teenager. Morals were something to discuss at church and feverishly avoid in your everyday life.

But something stopped me.

Maybe it was the ache in my bicep. Or it could have been the halitosis.

But I backed out of the encounter, tongue first.

I took her home. She wondered what was wrong. She practically pleaded with me to see her again. And rat that I was, I went mousy and never spoke to her.

It was an odd night.

Rather than feeling fulfilled, I felt like I had used another human being, who would suffer some pangs from the experience.

It sucked.

I did learn, though, that there is some pain in pleasure.

The reason most people never pursue their goals is because along the way, there are some shards of glass strewn in the pathway which either need to be avoided or walked over.

If life was easy, dumb people would rule the world.

Well, maybe they do.

But life isn’t easy. With every pain comes some pleasure, and the pleasures that arrive our way do require that we survive a bit of discomfort.

 

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Untotaled: Stepping 23 (June 19th, 1965) Bumps, Clumps, Humps, Lumps…Mumps July 19, 2014

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2296)

(Transcript)

Mackey lived right next door to me. He was still my best friend, even though as we got older we found ourselves in different circles.

He got the mumps.

Since vaccinations have come along and practically eliminated this condition, people don’t realize how frightening it was in 1965, to contract the mumps. Not only was it uncomfortable, painful and extremely ugly, but there was a danger that if you didn’t take care of yourself, the condition could travel down to the lower regions which should only be visited by your soapy washcloth and your future wife.

Being a good friend, I went over to see Mackey and keep him company. To ease his discomfort, Mackey’s mother made a delicious chocolate malt with little marshmallows on top, which Mackey was too miserable to consume, only able to take a couple of swigs. So being a devoted comrade, I stepped in and finished it for him so his mother wouldn’t yell at him.

About ten days after Mackey and I shared this dairy treat, I noticed that my face was swelling up. I looked in the mirror and my whole head region looked like the sludge and silt gathering at the bottom of the Mississippi Delta. I felt like New Orleans on a cloudy day.

The doctor was called, confirmed that I had mumps and said I needed to go to bed–and that I shouldn’t goof off and walk around, tempting the little viruses to traverse to the South Pole. Well, my friend Benny showed up and he was so intent on making me happy that I got up to talk to him, which led to me walking around.

Sure enough, two days later I woke up swollen in my Southern Hemisphere.

It was so ugly–not only because of the discomfort. No, mainly because I had to let my mother and the doctor peer at it. Gross.

The doctor wasn’t much help, sternly saying I shouldn’t have let the condition happen in the first place. Then he said I should pack it in ice.

Now, there are many places ice shouldn’t go. I guarantee you, one of them is “down there.”

So for a whole week I was surrounded in ice like a hapless mackerel ending its journey at Fisherman’s Wharf.

Ringing in my head was the final warning from my small-town physician, saying it was likely that I would be sterile because of my mistake. I didn’t have a problem with the idea of being sterile, as far as not having children, but I was afraid it might affect my future possibilities of attracting a woman of my choice.

Even though I can’t remember how my affliction ended, mumps went away, years passed, and as it turned out, I fathered four sons.

I guess sterility was not a problem.

There should be a lesson here, and I suppose several could be derived by the more astute reader:

  • Don’t drink a chocolate malt with your mumps-infested friend.
  • Don’t go against the directions of your physician
  • Don’t allow your private areas to become public
  • Or don’t freak out because your doctor has information, trying to scare you.

Tell you what–I’ll let you take your pick. It’s a multiple choice.

My only take from the situation is to keep everything frozen away from my warm place.

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