From Chapter 18 of Aching: Memoirs of an Unrequited Sex Addict

In this excerpt, I find myself compelled to jerk off while taking a hike in the woods. As I search for a suitable spot, I discover I’m not alone. The encounter reminds me who I am.

From Chapter 18:

I needed to find a place off the trail. It barely was a trail, but anyone else back there would’ve been following this footpath. The exhibitionist in me couldn’t convince me that getting caught would be worth the potential legal troubles.

The footpath led to a slight clearing. On the far end of the clearing was a patch of woods dense enough to give me adequate shelter. Approaching it, my mind searched for the right fantasy for the occasion. I pictured one of the neo-hippie chicks from campus. She’d come back here with me, totally okay with the idea of shagging in the sticks. I saw her grinning as she walked next to me. She’d tell me she’d done something like this before—more than once, actually. She’d surprise me by stopping me, lowering to her knees, and undoing my belt.

“Hey there, hello.”

I jumped. A massive, hulking man emerged from the very thicket I’d targeted. How had I not heard him? Had he been squatting there waiting for someone to pass? His ability to catch me off guard disarmed me.

“Hey,” I responded. Rarely had I been so annoyed to see another person.

“A nice day now, ain’t it?” he asked. His word were muddled somewhat.

“Yep,” was all I gave him.

I intended to pass him and continue into the thicket. He had other ideas. I got a look at him as he lurched closer. He wore denim overalls and a navy blue sweater. His clothing was soiled and threadbare. The ball cap he wore appeared to have been white years earlier, but now was covered in greasy fingerprints.

His clothing wasn’t what was remarkable about him. I could see dimness in his eyes. He didn’t close his mouth. This was too bad, because I could see how horrible it was inside. He had almost no teeth, save for a pair of very brown, very crooked, and very prominent lower canines jutting towards me. His face was tan but from dirt, not sun exposure. I could smell him. I also could smell what was in him.

“I like it back here, ya know?” he muttered in a deep Pennsylvania German. “It’s a nice day now.”

Repeating himself in his fourth sentence gave away with certainty what was going on with this guy. He was some local farmer’s cognitive disabled adult son, loose in the woods for the day. Dumb luck brought us together. Spending a moment to size up the situation in my head, he spoke again before I could say anything.

“So you wanna fool around?” he asked, not looking at me, but getting right to the point.

“No. Sorry.”

He said something unintelligible and actually looked ashamed for asking. If he hadn’t startled me so much, I may have felt guilty again for rejecting someone. This was twice in one week I’d turned down sex. I wondered how often people took this guy up on his offers. I thought about the kind of people who might. Revisiting the moment later, I did feel sorry for him. I understood rejection. Choosing to reject someone made me feel terrible, even if he was a wretch. Did the women who rejected me view me with similar regard (minus the pity)?

Back in the woods, I didn’t want this guy following me to my car. He was clumsy and lumbering, so I could’ve outrun him had I needed to. The idea of getting stuck by my car with him around made me uneasy, so I ventured out of sight. I stopped to watch him from behind different thicket of trees. Pausing for a moment, I thought about how pissed I was that he stole my jerk off from me. I watched him shuffle back into the thicket I’d claimed. I felt a mixture of annoyance and empathy. When he was gone, I retreated back to my car.

I drove away thinking about what I had declined. A cognitively disabled man wanted to hook up with me in the woods. Is this what guys experienced while cruising? Talk about scraps. I wondered how far removed I was from such desperation.



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