I have a problem with commitment. 

So here I am, on the fringes of total and complete small county newspaper fame and glory, and I’m suddenly worried that perhaps, just perhaps, the pressure will be too great. I will fold like a piece of 20 pound printer paper. I won’t be able to do the “C” word. 

This wouldn’t be the first time. During my last four years of public school I didn’t do a whole lot of kissing. None, in fact. This was by choice, Elma didn’t have a whole lot to chose from. But as I neared my 18th birthday, I started feeling like maybe I was really missing out on this whole kissing thing. 

I made the mistake of mentioning said dry spell to my nephews, Carson and Micah, who were just a few months older than me and two of my closest friends. They decided what we (we?) needed was a plan. Who knew kissing required so much foreplay I mean forethought? They wanted a short list of possible suspects from me, people I deemed kissable. I could only think of two. To protect the innocent, I will change their names. 

Since one of my possible suspects was no longer attending Elma High School via graduation/college, we really only had one option. We’ll call him Alan Catterbrain. I thought I could probably bring myself to kiss Alan Catterbrain, and my nephews were sure they could get the stars lined up just peachy like. 

So one fateful Friday night, directly following an Elma High School football game, my nephews and their dates met myself and unsuspecting Alan Catterbrain at the Health Club (my sister owned it so we had after hours access) to go hot tubbing. That’s right, hot tubbing. They were leaving nothing to chance. Poor poor Alan. He had no idea what they (we?) had planned for him. 

Let’s face it, I had no idea what we had planned for him. At that time in my life, I was no seductress. I can remember the sheer panic when the boys insisted I drive Poor Alan home, wink wink nod nod. Alan was all for it. So home we went. Panic. Fear. Clear understanding that I was now committed to The Plan. 

Suffice it to say, we hadn’t gotten very far with The Plan when Alan’s phone rang. It was my father. Who else but good old Dad would think to call and break up my little party? Apparently he had used his second sight (I am completely serious here) to track me down because he KNEW I was up to no good. I had a flawless late night track record, the man had trusted me for four years without checking up on me, and the one night I decide to sew a few wild oats, he knows

My father proceeded to chew Poor Alan up one side and down the other, making the night’s ambush complete. He finally spit him out with a “And don’t you forget it!” Poor Alan was pretty shook up, but it was nothing compared to me. Can we say pain? Tragedy? Total parent/child humiliation?

The next Monday during 4th period (swing choir) Alan came up and actually had the nerve to put his arm around my waist and attempt to whisper something in my ear. I was so horrified and embarrassed by every aspect of our secret rendezvous (and fearful that someone might find out) that I couldn’t even look at the kid. It took months for me to get over it. 

Needless to say, it wasn’t the first time I kissed and skadaddled. I don’t know how Jason hooked me. I guess when the time to commit is right, you just know. 

Well, here’s hoping.