WARNING: Across the Aisle features a weekly helping of extraordinary, yet exploratory, writing, gratuitous pop culture abuse, and complimentary Funyons. Due to our conscious decision to explore familiar themes in an inimitable, though inherently divisive, manner, such brilliance is solely intended for mature reading audiences. This is Hive Mind 101. That glorious moment when Wonder Twin powers activate. Jay Connor. Alex Hardy. The triumphant return of Voltron. These ain’t no studio tricks. Enjoy.
Alex Hardy: Weeks ago while [less than sober], I pondered whether condom companies should be responsible for preparing users for the many possible outcomes of one’s journey to burrow his penis in a nice cozy lovecave. I know, I know. But I reasoned that if McDonalds can be sued once you burn your tongue with their hot coffee, and gun manufacturers can be found at fault for White coworker’s unfortunate, explainable murderous rampage that doesn’t reflect on a greater failure within his family or community and was certainly not triggered by the absence of his father or a mother on drugs, there must be some recourse y recompense for instances when I row, row, row my boat up inside someone and wind up starring in a telenovela sponsored by Goya. I want to speak to a manager.
Jay Connor: There are levels to this shit. Tiers of Privilege if you will. I ain’t one to gossip, but if you insist on thrusting your nostrils in the fridge, the food pyramid goes as such: Michelle Obama, Wifey, Girlfriend With Facebook Relationship Status Annuity, Girlfriend Without Facebook Relationship Status Annuity, Amigo Con Beneficios, We Don’t Go Dutch Anymore, We’re Dating But Haven’t Had Sex Yet, She Cool But…, Kat Stacks, and lastly but not leastly, About Last Night. Yes, the hierarchy is extensive, and you are more than welcome to scratch and sniff the omnipresent “You Are Here” sticker until your name magically appears, but if the glove compartment in your Kia is permeated with a bevy of unceremoniously divorced heels and a toothbrush with more stamps than a passport, that sound you hear is the Affordable Health Care Act hurdling right over you. Because surprise! Part-time employees don’t get benefits.
AH: So, basically, we each have to figure this out for ourselves? But what if you’re not ready for your Michelle Obama. Or your Idris Elba. What if you are somewhere between Part-Time Partner in Crime and What’s Your Name Again? Is there a manual to this one can find on a torrent somewhere?
JC: Manuals are for bras and IKEA furniture. The logistics behind sexual impropriety are far too intricate to be confined to the Self Help section of Barnes & Nobles. Thankfully, however, we have The Coition Commandments *bangs gong* that pertain strictly to those who, either by choice, circumstance or venereal disease, are trapped in the Bermuda Tryst Triangle and have accepted their fate as practitioners of serial promiscuity. One Night Stand land, if you will. As such, the First Commandment is quite curt: “Thou shalt not catch feelings.” Simple, right? This is a business transaction, not the gateway to marital bliss. Moses and his friendly neighborhood Israelites might part your Red Sea, but the only person you’ll ever share a joint bank account with is the IRS. So kindly leave your panties and emotions on the floor over there, next to Joey Lawrence’s glory days and Memphis Bleek’s rap career.
AH: Ah yes. The oh-so-important Separation of Heart and Hole(s). Very, very important shit right there. I try not to get in the habit of forecasting a few years of lovingly pooting on each other based on a night/dawn of lust, sweat, and tears of joy. I have come close to failing here, but because I respect myself, I remember, “Be cool. Ice cold.” Even if you are overcome with passion like Kanye while sketching the Spring 2015 line of velveteen sundresses for fashionable and progressive rappity rap dudes and let the L word (“love,” not “lube”) slip from your lips, it must be immediately stricken from the record. It never happened. What never happened? Exactly. If mentioned once body fluids have been rinsed away, you’re allowed to plead the fifth, question their sanity and status as a terrorist, and/or report them to Homeland Security. Whichever.
JC: So what’s the second Coition Commandment? Glad you asked: “Thou shalt not apologize”. After all the fanfare and inebriated foreplay, was your heavily anticipated blockbuster a dud at the box office? Despite a valiant effort on your part, did you finally stumble upon her g-spot hiding behind a cackling Waldo? If ever there was a moment in life when it’s perfectly fine to be a shriveling speck in the peripheral view of society, and an unrepentant, unmitigated failure of the flesh, this is it. Bask in your coitus catastrophe. Smile in the face of your intercourse ineptitude. Because in the long list of charitable donations, not a single solitary fuck shall be given this day. Try as you may, such philanthropic endeavors won’t quell the groundswell of awkwardness, so why even bother? You have more important things to worry about. Like AIDS. Or not sleeping in the wet spot.
AH: Precisely. If you’re truly living up to the ancient Igbo proverb, “Meet. Greet. Skeet. Street,” then there is no need to apologize to someone you’ll likely never see again. Everyone has had a clumsy hump or two in their day. How else would you explain the existence of Trinidad James? It happens, for we are (mostly) human. But as the illustrious Helen Keller once said, it is the sum of a man’s contributions to the art of orifice-stretching that shall determine his street value in the valley of the shadow of Superior Ho Shit High Priests, or something thereabouts, no?
JC: “Thou shalt prepare accordingly.” So sayeth our Third Commandment. After an exhaustive game of Extortion By Bartender and successfully averting the sea of shame and cellulite on the dance floor, congratulations are in order. Because that lure you dropped behind the toilet somehow managed to snag a fish. She ain’t a Bluefin Tuna, but if Hawaiians can extol the virtues of mystery meat, you can make the most of your sultry sardine. Once rid of soybean oil and wire taps, the nookie negotiations conclude favorably (all praise due to Ciroc, the Greek Goddess of Compromised Principles). Now all you gotta do is get her home and—OH SHIT. You didn’t clean your apartment before you left? Hold up, hold up. Calm down, be cool. Her crib will fill in wonderfully as our substitute teacher. Slight problem though: Upon your arrival, once you get it crackin’, you realize you left your condoms in your dingy ass domicile. The same domicile in which A&E just filmed a season marathon of “Hoarders”. Which makes you 0 for 2 and suspended indefinitely from the party in her panties. Tragic, really.
AH: Just because you don’t get to declare war upon her (or his) soft and gushies, you aren’t completely out of the race yet. There are countless ways to cross the finish line. How strong are your jaw muscles?
JC: Which brings us to the Fourth Commandment for your close encounter of the frisky kind: “Thou shalt be cognizant of karma.” Just because you can do something, and successfully avert criminal charges in the process, doesn’t translate into free reign to do so. Who do you think you are? White America? (What? Too soon?) Drunken selfie of the two of you sucking face in the club? Siskel and Ebert give it two Instagrams up. Drunken selfie with her desecrated, unconscious nether regions sprawled out behind you? Oh, sure. Your hipster friends might mistake it for a Kandinsky, but you know better. So don’t be like Brittney Murphy. Have a heart.
|Worst case scenario.|
JC: As long as said memento won’t have the Karma Police trying to park taser electrodes on your throat, you should be aiight. Which brings us to the fifth and final commandment: “Thou shalt minimize acquaintances.” Remember, your work visa has an expiration date. You aren’t a citizen, you’re a tourist in a foreign, mammaried land. So reserve some fucking dignity and conduct yourself as such. Exchanging Twitter handles with her roommate will only lead to civil unrest and bloodshed, and we’ve all heard horror stories about what happens if you rub her dog’s belly. For all intents and purposes, you’re a ninja. Like the back of Flavor Flav’s neck, be one with the night. This includes your exit strategy, so stop making debauchery so difficult. ST_Y IN YO_R F_CK_NG L_NE. Would you like to buy a vowel?
AH: Ah yes. Knowing thine role. No need for exchanging email addresses and having vision board parties together. There shall be no intermingling of friends. Don’t hold your breath for that HEYBOO morning text. If this is to be a proper, off the record, Martin Luther da WhiteNookie Hunter, Jr-approved passing of two ships in the night, keep it cute and don’t drown in your feelings when I don’t ask you to join my friends and me for dinner. Anything else would be uncivilized.
JC: “Let me hold you tight, if only for one night...” Sing that shit, Loofa. So in closing, abide by these five simple decrees and all will be well in your quest for breast domination. With puberty in your rear view mirror, there’s no excuse for a grown ass man to drop the ball(s). This concludes our public service announcement. Shalom.
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