I arrive at a local college town bar with friends. The bar is called Rock Island, and is known as a pick-up spot. . . . the kind of place you go to hook up more than to hang out.
Owing to some minor childhood traumas, I've never been much of a one for dressing up for Halloween. True to form, then, despite the holiday theme, I'm at the bar without a costume.
After a little while and a few beers, a guy who is also not in costume--save for a camouflage hat--approaches our table and asks me to dance. We hit the floor for a few fast numbers, and he trails me back to our table. Turns out he is in the Army (hence the camouflage hat), stationed at a nearby Army base. He tells me that his friends call him "Woody."
I've been off the dating scene for a while. Several months ago, I went through a big heartbreak that turned me off men for months. More recently, I've been so busy with school and work that I haven't had time to get back in the game. So while Woody is not quite up to my usual (high) standards, he is interested, and he drives a new Mustang. We end up kissing at the end of the night while leaning on the Mustang, which he promises to let me drive "some time."
We have our first date on a weeknight the following week. He takes me to Pizza Hut for the buffet. (Hey, I'm 22 and still in college.) Things go OK. . . . not stellar, but OK.
Our second date is a football game on Saturday, followed by an early dinner at Red Lobster. For the second time, Woody picks up the tab. . . . but does not leave a tip. (Cheap bastard.)
We go back to my on-campus apartment and hang out. At some point, we start making out. Before things even progress to first base, Woody says "Oh, God" and. . . . shall we say, arrives early at his destination.
I excuse myself to the bathroom and am more than a little surprised. Woody is a 28-year-old guy; I think that someone his age should have more self-control. He leaves not long after.
We have one more brief and awkward phone conversation, and that's the end.
My roommates dub him "The Premature Spooger."
About a year later, I am at Rock Island again with one of my college roommates and our dates. We see Woody, and my roommate decides to tell our guys the story of our last date. One of the guys says "Damn! You must be one helluva good kisser." My guy waits an additional three dates before kissing me, out of fear that I will mock him, too, if the same thing happens to him.
Who knew at 22 that this is a common male problem?