Ronald… the heartbreakers.. and an outside light

home-of-the-combat-medic-corpsman-and-pararescue_mousepad_LOGO-MPAD-1_larger_1378527981_largeThat ride home was the first time I had been “intimate” with a girl. I was unsure of what I was supposed to do… my father had given me a 5 book set on human anatomy (with no pictures) and said, “Read this: once you finish, if you have questions, I will answer them”. I would look them over, because he would check on me, however Scot gave me a Steve Miller band cassette tape. I would listen to the tape and fall asleep with the open faced book covering my head. A week later, dad asked me if I had questions. I replied, “nope”. I was grateful Elle Arre had experience and was patient with me. She taught me what to do… and I decided I would like to do that regularly with her. I was “whipped” from the gate.

Her previous relationship, from what she told me, left her somewhat scarred. She was in love with this guy and he basically threw her away. I always had a problem understanding this guys decision… even to this day. I wanted to keep her. As I would learn, from others and from first hand experience, people fresh out of serious relationships need time. The amount of time, from my experience, depends on the individual. Looking back I know she tried, very hard, to not hurt me. However, I knew it was inevitable. I just wanted to enjoy it for as long as I could. For some reason, I believed if I knew it was coming it would not hurt as much… this would become a pattern that followed me into every relationship with a woman I’ve ever had.

Elle Arre had older brothers and a younger sister. It was easier to be intimate at her house. My mom could feel any disturbance in the air current. She had a blood hounds nose and could smell any change teen enthusiasm. Any girl that I brought home was subject to moms interrogations. Elle and I always hung out at the Arre house. One night during intimacy lessons from Elle, in the Arre basement, her mama decided to come downstairs. We immediately ended the lesson, Elle and I, and I rolled up against the couch so I wouldn’t be discovered. However, both Elles’ and my clothes were spread all over the basement. A naked Elle sprinted to block her mama at the stairs, which, in retrospect, wasn’t the best selection of crisis management choices. Her mama had no suspicions of foul play until her naked daughter came to the staircase “ass in the wind”, as my Drill Sergeants would one day say.

Her mama started hysterically screaming, “What is this? What is this?”, which, ironically, sounds kind of cute in a French accent. Mama Arre turned on the lights, saw the clothes all over the room in an unorderly/chaotic arrangement and screamed an even louder, “What is this?”. As her mama fully entered the basement I covered my eyes, like a toddler playing hide and seek. I was completely naked, 3/4 erect and laying with my back against the couch with my, “compass pointing North” (yet another future saying by my Drill Sergeants).  Her final scream snapped me to reality, “RONALD!!!!! WHAT IS THIS???” (Ronald was Mr. Arre; Elle’s daddy) As it would turn out, that would be the fastest I ever put on all of my clothes, in the correct order, in my entire life. Record still stands today.

After a lot of screaming by Elle and her mama it was decided, by Mama Arre and Ronald, that a phone call to my parents was in order. Mom and Dad came to the Arre home, tried to calm Mama Arre (which didn’t seem to work) then drove me home. The end decision, made by both mamas, was I was not allowed to see Elle any longer. I was devastated. We tried some creative, secret intimacy in cars of our friends and outside at parties, however, it was beginning to wear on Elle, I believe. “We needed some space”, although I don’t remember being a part of that decision.

I resumed hanging with my new pals, the Brementown crew, but my mind was elsewhere. To their credit, they never rushed me. They never pushed or prodded me to do anything. I just hung out, drank a shitload of beer and spoke of Elle. One night we decided to go to the $1.50 movie at the mall. The movie theatre was right across from the arcade. The Arcade!! The arcade always cheered me up. In the arcade was a younger couple, a fiery little brunette freshman and her stringy boyfriend. I was drunk, as usual, and wasn’t in the mood for lovers. I said something out of pocket to the brunette, who obviously got offended, my friends stepped in and we went to the movies. Never thought much about it.

My friends walked me through being heartbroken. They allowed me to wallow, obsess and complain. However if I chose to do so, one or more of them would beat me with verbal sarcasm. The beatings would make me laugh. As it turned out most of them had an Elle of their own.  Jim had an Angel, Dave had a Dana, Kenny had a Lisa, Scot had a Stacy, Pat went to California every summer and got chubby-came home in the fall and got skinny… and then there was Tom. Tom had the attention of every girl in the school, however, he seemed to not have fallen for any up to this point. We all lived vicariously through Tom. It seemed pointless at this time to complain to the guys about my lost love. It was like Stevie Wonder complaining to Ray Charles about being blind. So we usually just listened to music, drank beer, watched each other (except me) participate in sports and hung out. Just being with those guys was enough for me. It still hurt, but I wasn’t alone. Every season was covered with sports: Jim, Dave, Pat and Kenny played football. Jim, Dave, Kenny and I wrestled. Tom and Scot played basketball. Pat and Tom played baseball. Our summers were about beaches, parties and music. Scot had his fingers on the pulse of local music from the time he entered H.S.. We followed his lead and traveled the entire Chicagoland Area listening to live music at small venues. An activity I still enjoy to this day.

I secretly called Elle Arre one night and she agreed to meet me for an automobile intimacy lesson. After the lesson, as we pulled up to her house, a car pulled up behind me. It had been flashing its lights at me for about two blocks. I pulled over with the lights off so I wouldn’t alert Mama Arre. I was NOT allowed to be anywhere near this house. As I leaned over to kiss Elle goodbye, my driver side door ripped open. I turned to face the person outside and was met with a snap kick. I saw it last minute and turned my head slightly causing the foot to miss my face. It caught me over the ear. As I was standing to exit the car, Elle screamed, “No! Don’t!” So I stayed seated. It was the stringy freshman whose girlfriend I offended at the arcade a week ago. The kid was now screaming at me, Elle was screaming at him and I was watching the doorway of the Arre house.

The outside light, over the entry door to the Arre abode, just went on.

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