(Extended spoof, presented In 10 installments of 4 pages each. This is the sixth installment; previous ones are presented on this site or below each new installment, Just say no to sex, at NewsLaugh, in case you miss one or more.)
“Good. You won’t be sorry. She knows the material very nearly as well as I do.” With that, he handed Dan the issue of Playboy, and said, “Review the material while I get her.”
“Yes, doctor,” Dan replied, and accepted his assignment.
He looked over the centerfold, while Dr. Coburn went to get his guest instructor.
“I like this course!” Dan exclaimed to himself.
Then, glancing around to make sure he was all alone, he took out his cell phone and made a call. In hushed tones, he said, “Hey, Eddie, baby, guess what?” And then he intentionally mispronounced the doctor’s name. “Today, ‘Cockburn’ is gonna have Melanie give me a private lesson …. I kid you not …. Come on, double or nothing. Fifty bucks says I make it with her …. Deal!… Well, maybe not today, but you can kiss your fifty smackers good-bye.” Just then Melanie tapped on the door. “Gotta go now,” he said, and concluded the conversation. He resumed looking over the magazine.
When Melanie entered, he said, “Hi, there.”
She noticed his intent involvement with the illusory ink and sarcastically inferred the frequent masculine result. “Studying hard?”
“Very hard,” he replied, and then went past the inference to the dutiful nature of his activity. “Your dad gave me the assignment. Then he put the magazine aside, commenting, “Ah, the consolations of ‘mere ink.’”
“Oh, this is such a joke!” she exclaimed.
“I don’t know what you mean.”
“Yeah, right. Who are you kidding, Dan? You could care less about how to say no to sex.”
“You still think that, after I’ve taken lessons for two whole weeks?”
“What else? The truth is, you’re only here because you’re like all the rest of the guys. You only want –“
“Oh, you mean Texaco?”
She gritted her teeth. “Tyrannosaurus Rex.”
“Melanie, it can’t hurt just to say it. I think you mean sex?”
“You would come right out with it. Of course, that’s what I mean.”
“Sorry, babes. Your dad said you’re gonna give me a lesson?”
“You should be so lucky.”
“Melanie, you know you always listen to what he says. So let’s get going.”
“This is so ridiculous!” she lamented. Then she relented. “All right, as long as you stay right where you are.”
“On the couch?”
“Are you going to sit beside me?”
“No way. Don’t you even remember that much?” she asked, and quoted, “‘Closeness must be avoided.’”
“You’re right. That axiom just slipped my mind for a moment.”
“Well, then, don’t let it happen again, all right?”
“You have my word.”
“OK, are you ready?”
“Ready,” he said, and shifted his body a bit.
“I’m telling you, Dan, you stand up just once, and the lesson ends. Got it?”
“All right. First, I need to see how far you’ve progressed. So we’ll review the materials. Let’s start with axiom one,” she said, and could not help asking, “Do you even know that much?”
“Sure, I do,” he replied, and recited, “’Sex leads to pregnancy. Pregnancy leads to overpopulation. Therefore, sex must be avoided.’ Well, what do you think?”
“As if you believe it. What’s axiom two?”
“Hey, no problem, Mel. ‘Sex can lead to STDs. STDs can lead to death. Therefore, sex must be avoided.”
“And how much sex have you avoided lately?”
“As much as possible.”
“What does that mean? I want a number. How about during the last week? Come on, how many girls have you made love with in the last seven days?”
“If you want to know the truth, I haven’t touched a woman since I started to study with your dad,” he said as convincingly as he could manage. “What’s wrong, don’t you believe me?”
“What’s the wild rumor going around campus about you and two oversexed cheerleaders?”
“I don’t know how that got started.”
“Is it true or not?”
“Of course, it’s not true. Do you think I would do something like that, especially with what I’ve learned in the last week?”
“I asked my dad if you told him about them.”
“You did? What did he say?”
“He said, ’Don’t be ridiculous.’ But I’m not sure what he meant. Sometimes, he has a hard time talking about certain things.” Then she cast a skeptical eye on him. “You must think my dad’s a real jerk.”
“How can you possibly say that, after I’ve come here day after day to learn his method.”
“And what do you think of me?”
“I think you’re wonderful. A little reserved, but a wonderful woman.”
“’A little reserved?’” she replied. “I know exactly what that really means. It’s code for what all the guys think: Melanie’s a jerk because she won’t do what other people like to do and do and do. Well, screw it. I don’t care. How’s that?”
“Whatever you say, Melanie. You know as well as I do that you’re sort of the official campus virgin. And guess what. I think it’s great that you’re like that.”
“Oh, sure, you do. Well, it’s not as easy as you think.”
“No – with guys like you always hitting on me,” she said, and then softened her tone a bit. “After all, I’m only human.” Then, regretting her brief lapse into sentiment, she renewed her resolve. “Which makes me even prouder of my reluctance.”
“Reluctance? Does that mean you may actually be willing at some point?”
“That’s none of your business. What matters is that I don’t feel like a jerk at all. I feel proud of who I am. And, if you believe a single thing my father has taught you, you’d know why.”
“I think I do, but tell me in your own words.”
“Sure,” she said, and then went on as if reciting from her father’s teachings. “I’m proud because I know I am the natural remedy for overpopulation and the resultant ecological depredation, the heartbreak of abortion, the scourge of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, as well as a moderating influence on the human race’s historic obsession with, with–“
“– Come on, Mel, you can do it. What do you think of when I say Mexico, Texaco, and Tyrannosaurus Rex?”
She continued to be trammeled with guilt, so he enumerated the letters of the word. “S-E-X. What does that spell?”
“Sex,” she managed to utter.
“Very good,” he told her. “Let’s go on. Now, why do people like sex?”
“Because they’re terribly misguided.”
“No, because it gives them pleasure.”
“Pl-, pl-, pleasure!”
“Excellent, Melanie! I see there’s hope.”
“That’s enough,” she said. “I have to leave.”
“But you’re supposed to give me a lesson,” he reminded her.
“Then behave yourself, OK? I’m who I am, and I will always be this way. Got it?”
“Yep. And I admire you for what you are.”
“You are such a liar.”
“You’re wrong. In fact, my intention is to be as great an example of your dad’s method as you are.”
“I’ll believe it when I see it.”
“How about this?” he told her. “I’ve been telling the rest of the guys on the football team about what I’m learning, and pretty soon the whole team is going to study with your dad.”
She sat down beside him. “You’re kidding?”
“No, I’m not. You just don’t know how devoted I am to this new way of thinking about sex. Imagine how much publicity that will create for your dad’s method. I can see the headline in the school paper now.” He held forth his hands to illustrate the magnitude of the type. “Entire Football Team Swears Off Sex.”
“I can’t imagine something that would be more helpful,” she said, and then modified her frequent childlike tone so that now it intimated a vastly different need. “Do you find me attractive?”
“You?” he said, a bit flustered by what appeared to be her sudden availability. He decided the best thing he could do was to restrain himself. “Well, Melanie, to tell you the truth, I used to find you very attractive – so attractive I had dreams about you. But not anymore.”
She moved a bit closer to him. “You had dreams about me?”
“You have no idea. I couldn’t help myself. Later in the course, will I learn how to avoid wet dreams?”
“They were that hot?”
“Yeah. What can I say, I’m a normal guy.”
“That depends on what you call normal. All the girls think you’re a real hunk.”
“What do you think?”
She backed away from the emotional precipice that she sensed she might have approached. “I think you’re very handsome.”
“Un-huh. But then all the girls do.”
“Oh, come on.”
“It’s true,” she said, “and you know it.” Then she managed to relocate her legendary resistance. “But I know all too well what handsome men can lead to.”
“Hey, I know that axiom, too. It leads to ‘feminine arousal.’” Then he dared to venture a parallel. “And what do beautiful women lead to?”
Melanie swallowed hard. “’Masculine arousal.’”
“Yeah,” he almost panted, and turned to her. “I confess, Melanie. I’m still attracted to you.”
“I knew it!”
“Does that upset you?”
“No,” she replied, “but it does remind me that I must be especially careful when you’re around.”
“Ditto, when I’m around you.”
“I think you should leave,” she said, and stood up.
“No, please, Melanie. I know a better answer.”
“What? That you never come back?”
“Don’t even say such a thing. I mean, I just need more education.”
“Oh, sure, as if that will make a difference.”
“It will, I promise. Come on, Melanie. Teach me. I’m all yours.”
“What’s the point?”
“I can learn. I’ll prove it. Let’s try something really advanced.”
“What do you mean?” she asked, and sat down again.
“Try to get me excited.”
“Why would I do that?”
“Just so I can prove you can’t do it. Come on, I promise you, my resistance is up.”
“Skip it. I’m here to learn,” he said, and held up the copy of Playboy. “Take me beyond mere ink to the real thing.”
“You’re getting carried away.”
“Then give me the next rule. I yearn for advanced study.” He looked directly into her eyes, and it must be said that at that moment the entire edifice of the Coburn method seemed to teeter.
“The next rule?” she replied, breathing the words back at him.
“Please, I yearn to learn! Give it to me.”
“What about sixty-nine?”
“There is none. We skip from sixty-eight to seventy.”
“Why, tell me why?”
“The unfortunate associations that that number evokes.”
“OK, I’ll take seventy. Quick! I need all the axioms I can get.”
“Yes, Dan,” she whispered. “’Kissing leads to arousal.’”
“More, tell me more! I need it when I’m near you.”
“Need it badly. Need it so much I want to earn a graduate degree in your father’s method. A Ph. D.!”
“You do?” she breathed warmly. “How badly do you want to earn it?”
“So badly that – “ At that moment, he lost whatever cool he had managed to retain, threw his arms around her, and gave her an enormous kiss.
Melanie allowed herself the luxury of enjoying it for a few moments, but then her extensive tutelage asserted itself. “We should stop,” she said. “We’re losing it.”
“No, no, don’t say that. We’re gaining each other.”
“Please, Dan. Control yourself,” she told him.
He sensed her need to take a breather and let her push him away. “Sorry, Mel. But you can’t give me a test like that this early. I’m still a sexual undergraduate. And I’m wild for you.”
“Maybe I’ll never get past it. When it comes to you, I could fail the entire course.”
She stood up and recomposed herself. “You better leave.”
“You mean that?”
“Please,” she said, with a trace of desperate need.
“I’ll tell you what. If you only give me a little more time, I know I can learn not to be attracted to you. I want to learn. And, if you give up on me, think how much sex I’ll be in danger of having. I’m helpless without you.”
“I’ll tell you what. If you promise to control yourself, I’ll give you one more chance.”
“Good. I’m ready.”
“Now, you really have to concentrate on everything I say. No more fooling around.”
“You have my word.”
“I think we should review axiom twenty-nine.”
“Is that the one about sitting close together?”
“Yes. ‘Sitting close together leads to touching. Touching leads…’”
At this point, he joined in and the finished the axiom with her: “’… to kissing. Therefore, sitting close together must be avoided.’”
“That was very good,” she said.
Just then, Dr. Coburn returned. He tapped on the den door, and called, “Class in progress?”
“Yes, Daddy,” Melanie replied.
“Keep up the good work,” he told her. “I want to review the material I picked up at the bookstore.”
“OK,” she said, and continued to drill Dan on the axioms, while he did his best to be a devoted student.
End of Installment Six