Riding SoloOn the online w4m casual encounters section of Craigslist, real women write ambiguously desperate posts like: let’s grab a drink and then… or spend some time together… or wanting it now!  They have grainy camera-phone self portraits taken in their bathroom mirrors. My laptop’s battery heats my thighs as I wait for these lonely women to come home—from what I imagine are evenings of failed dates, leftovers, and season finales of the Biggest Loser—and hop online for a quickie.

After chickening out and deleting multiple e-mail accounts, I’ve shuffled the words Chris and verb so many times I’m on the latest combination: verbChrisverb. My name is another piece of meat in a sandwich of action.

As I search the w4m, I post in m4w. It feels like a room full of men shouting for attention. I have to be louder. So, I post a picture of amateur pornstar Wifey giving a handjob to Hubby. I crop out her face so the frame only shows her mouth: smiling, her tongue darting past her bleach-white teeth, tasting her lip-gloss, while he ejaculates like Old Faithful. I say I’m him.

*          *          *

I get three responses to my Old Faithful post:

Barb (64): Plays e-mail tag with me. Asks, Do you cum as much as this? Attaches a picture of a man from the chest down with his penis pouring onto a plate she’s lapping up. She is white, with an over-burnt tan; someone who tries too hard. Her fingers are sheathed in gold rings and a necklace with crucifix anchors her head down to the plate.

In real life, I wouldn’t even check out Barb in line at a grocery store. But here, online, I don’t have to be me.

It’s perverse. But the extreme—what is beyond normal—is the turn on. I write back, More.

Then, the e-mails stop. Maybe she can’t handle it? Barb must have been at the edge, just looking over.

*          *          *

Zorro Couple (42, 37): They say I can wear a bandito mask while the husband films me fucking his wife. In the picture, she’s bent over, a lime green polka-dotted skirt draped over her smooth nectarine ass. I want to taste the slick sliver of damp panties over her crotch. Her face is a white flare in the camera’s flash.

I look at her calf-high socks with a frilly hem. I could tear her apart. But I don’t want proof of me being there. It would be wild, but it wouldn’t be free.

I thank them, but I say I won’t do it.

*          *          *

College Girl (23): Posts a four-square of photos with her leaning over a bed frame, zoomed in on her paw-print tramp stamp tattoo; spread eagle on the bedspread, fingering herself; taking a guy’s cock in her mouth, to the hilt, his balls on her chin; and from the guy’s point-of-view, welcoming me to be the stand-in, like the porn I watch.

In all of them, there is a black censor bar like Girls Gone Wild, except instead of covering her nipples or her snatch, the rectangle blocks her eyes. And I think about how when you know someone, you look them in the eyes to show you trust them. I wait to e-mail her, considering it. When I finally do, my message bounces back.

*          *          *

Black BBW for ASAP hook up (19): I know this w4m is real. It reads clear.  I might as well send a message and see what happens.

I write: I’m interested. I’m d/d free. I’ve got stamina and like to go multiple rounds. My motto is: It’s not all about me.

BBW (19): You’re cute. Are you available Monday? Here’s my number.

And I wonder if the phone number might be the suicide hotline, like I had gotten before from someone cruel. This time I don’t hesitate. Not after missing College Girl.

*          *          *

I find it ironic that the song “Don’t Let Me Go” by The Fray is on the radio. I stop by a corner pharmacy and select a three-pack of extra-thin, pre-lubed condoms. The cashier, an older woman, gives me a slight, kind smile at the checkout. I take it to mean, “You are so responsible.”

I’m in disguise: I’ve changed out of my bright sneakers, tight jeans, and slim t-shirt and into a loose fitting blue work-shirt, black gym shorts, and a pair of old shoes from the back of my closet. I follow a car past the security gate and into an apartment complex. My cellphone vibrates in my pocket.

“Chris?” BBW (19) asks.

I’m freaked out that she knows my name. But then I remember my e-mail verbChrisverb.

“Are you ready?” she asks.

“Yeah,” I say. I hope nobody will recognize me. “I’m here.”

“What?” she asks.

“The gate was open.”

“Oh,” she says. “Well, come on. I’m waiting.”

*          *          *

At the door, Ashley—that’s what BBW (19) says her name is—peeks through the blinds, then unlocks the door. She has on a dress with a plunging v-neck, pulling my eyes away from her thick legs to her mounds of brown cleavage. The apartment smells dank and Ashley tells me she hit a bowl of weed before I arrived, to calm her nerves.

I follow Ashley to her room. She says her sister isn’t home, but I glance around the corners of the apartment, thinking a camera crew might jump out of the corner for a special news program on meaningless casual sex.  I close Ashley’s bedroom door behind me, thinking I’ll jump out the window if I get ambushed. I need to know how to escape.

Ashley sits on the edge of her bed. I take off my shoes. I haven’t even shaken her hand, but I climb onto her. She adjusts her hair and I realize it’s a wig. As I straddle her, looking into her eyes, I count to ten, and then ask, “Are you ready?” We start making out. It’s fierce. I don’t know anything about Ashley other than that she wants sex with me, right now. I loop my thumbs under her dress’s straps and pull down to reveal saucer-sized nipples that I take in my mouth. Ashley collapses backward on her bed, pulling down my shorts and lifting her skirt. I put on the first of three condoms.

After I finish, I get hard again and ask Ashley to suck me. She deepthroats. Her lips are pressed underneath my belly button. The metal bead of Ashley’s tongue ring slides up and down my shaft. I try to focus on anything else as I edge.

On the wall next to Ashley’s bed there are three charcoal sketches. In the corners are HelloKittys. In the center is a girl in what I figure is a cheerleading outfit. I think people draw self-portraits the way they want to be seen.

Ashley’s wig falls like a curtain over my cock. I tuck it away. Ashley’s brown lips retract up and then sink down, down. And it’s good, but not great. I think I might just be part of a routine.

Again, I look around the room of this stranger. A number and goal weight is scribbled on a whiteboard in dry erase marker. Ashley’s heavy breasts lay on my thighs like sandbags.

Then with another condom, I move to take Ashley from behind, but I keep slipping out. She doesn’t help me. I can’t stay hard. The condom is crumpling up.

I’m barely inside of Ashley and I don’t think I can finish. Enough is enough. I fake it. I smash myself into Ashley again and again, plunging all the way, and force myself to throb a few times. I pull out and go to the bathroom, sliding off the empty condom and then throwing it in the trash.

I step out of the bathroom, only wearing socks, and Ashley asks if I want to make this a regular thing. I shake my head and say, “This is a one time thing.” I want us to smash together and then ricochet away from each other. Ashley nods. I think she believes I can get anyone I want.

Ashley watches me put on my clothes. I feel naked.

“Be safe,” I say and give Ashley a hug.

*          *          *

I come home from my casual encounter with Ashley and go to the laundry room. I take off my shoes and then strip down. I consider throwing my clothes in the washer, but I don’t want to ever wear them again. I want to put the entire outfit in an oil drum, douse it with gas, and throw in a match, igniting the mess.

I turn my shower to its hottest. A screen of smoky fog fills the bathroom. I step into the water, scolding myself.

_________________

Excerpted from Riding Solo, with permission from Thought Catalog, 2013.

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CHRIS WIEWIORA is from Orlando, Florida. He is the author of the e-books Riding Solo and My Life is a Soap Opera (both from Thought Catalog, 2013). He sits on the editorial board of BULL: Men’s Fiction. Read more at www.chriswiewiora.com.

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