Day 10: Having ice cream with a Buddhist Monk is BTS

It’s only my tenth day of celibacy and already I feel that I’ll be upgraded to a higher state of being when I’m reincarnated. The heavens seem to be conspiring it; why else would I cross paths with a Buddhist monk, have ice cream with him (raspberry razzle) and even get to second…cone? (Actually, the path-crossing part might seem a bit disingenuous considering that I orchestrated the whole ice cream setup and was gloating about it to friends for weeks prior.)

R.Z. is a former English professor in New York City and was ordained last February by the Dalai Lama himself. He is presently based at a monastery in the Southwestern region of France, about two hours away from the Pyrenees mountains, but is here for a week and he was a panelist for a literary event I put together. We got to talking about how one ends up making a vow of celibacy (although mine was admittedly the partial sort). Aside from one’s religious beliefs and neuroses about catching sexually transmitted diseases, the diagnosis we came up with cuts with a kind of penetration I haven’t felt in weeks. That my 100 days was an attempt to regain a sense of self and independence from other people. That I was avoiding being emotionally hurt. That I wanted to cultivate a relationship according to an ideal of chastity. And there I was, guilty on all counts. While Laszlo merely nodded vigorously, another attendee at the reading, after hearing part of my conversation with R.Z., appeared to be deep in thought before suggesting, “Have you ever thought of joining Sexual Compulsives Anonymous?”

While I have yet to get past the fact that the SCA was a running joke in the Will Ferrell roller-blading movie, I can’t deny that everyone is driven by a compulsion, a force that may be irrational and yet beyond our control. (In one’s teenage years, they’re called hormones.) Giving up sex for the summer is a compulsion in itself, absurd in the way that one’s sexual peak is perceived to be in one’s twenties and here I am putting my libido on hold. Which means that I’ll have to channel my appetites into something else. I don’t know what it is, but I have I feeling that it’ll be something unexpected, something incredible. 

When I got home that night, I saw that my friend R. had sent me an email, with the header: HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

It read:

Anthony Bogaert, Ph.D., in a 1999 Archives of Sexual Behavior article, “The Relation Between Sexual Orienation and Penile Size,” stated:

“The relation between sexual orientation and penile dimensions in a large sample of men was studied…

Penile dimensions were assessed using five measures of penile length and circumference from Kinsey’s original protocol. On all five measures, homosexual men reported larger penises than did heterosexual men.”

And just like that, my campaign to reincarnate as a higher form of being got a little harder. 

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