Having absolutely no way of knowing, even so, speaking with positive knowledge, “I’m sure this happens to lots of guys when they’re first married. So don’t worry about it, Mitch, I’m not”—oh, yeah she was—“and I’m positive you’ll be able to do it in the morning!”
Extremely worried, “God, Marcie, I sure hope so.”
“Don’t worry, honey,” stroking the side of his face, “I love you no matter what, and we’ll have all our lives to make love.”
“Yeah,” trying to lighten the situation, “and we’d better do it before I go bald.”
“These damned rubbers, they’re scalping me!”
Seagate, New York
The Fifth day of Their Lives
December 22, 1955: 9:05 a.m.
hey washed, they brushed their teeth and tried again.
They awoke, t
However, with the added pressure due to Marsha’s assurance that, “I’m positive you’ll be able to do it in the morning!” Mitchell was even more apprehensive then the night before, and, fortunately for him he wasn’t given the opportunity to scalp himself because, unfortunately for him, he could not raise an erection.
“Maybe,” absently dipping a teaspoon in and out of a cup of coffee, “you can talk to someone about it.”
“Yeah?” Snapping back, “Who in the hell am I supposed to talk to?”
Frustrated, both were becoming irritable.
“And who in the hell do you think I’d even tell about this?”
“Mitchie, let’s try again in a little while, but without a rubber.”
“No rubber? What if…”
“What if what?” she said angrily. “From what I’ve been told, you’ve got to get it in to make a baby!” Knowing she’d hurt him, sorry she’d said it, coming from the table, sitting alongside him on the bed, “Mitchie, you’ve got to talk to someone about this! Maybe there’s something they can give you.”
“Yeah, like some kind of a little blue pill, huh?” Subconsciously hiding, he’d been laying with his arm across his face. Sitting up, looking at Marsha, “Great idea! Yeah, that’s what I’ll do! I’ll just call my skipper and say, Hi, Cap! This is your pal, Mitch Lipensky. And the reason I’m calling, you see, is because I’ve just gotten married to this really beautiful girl and I can’t seem to keep it up. Or now, I can’t even get it up!” Verging on hysteria, wanting to calm down, but, “Is that what I’m supposed to do, Marsha? Huh? Or maybe I should call Aunt Ida and ask her for advice?”
Forcing a smile, “Yeah, that’s a pretty picture.” Putting her arm across his shoulder, “Look, honey, I know how badly you must feel about this, but I meant a doctor, or someone like that.”
“Yeah,” smiling back, “I can see that, too.” Taking her hand, kissing her palm, “I don’t know any doctors, and if I want to go to Public Health, unless it’s an emergency—and I don’t think they’ll think of this,” nodding his chin downward, “as an emergency, I’ll have to wait till I get back to the ship to make a request.” Thinking a moment, “But you know what?” Getting an idea. “What if I hop in the car and go to the drug store. There’s one on Serf, a couple’a blocks from the gate. I’ll talk to the druggist. They’re almost like doctors, and maybe he can tell me what to take.”
“That’s a great idea, Mitchie! Like I said, maybe it’s not so uncommon, and maybe they do have something for it—a pill or something. And if they don’t, maybe he can tell you what to do. You know, an ice-pack or a heating pad.”
“Yeah, that’s kind’a like what I thought.”
“Want me to go with you?”
“Good God, no!”
Returning thirty-five minutes later.
She’d made, but not closed the bed, “So?” and cleaned the kitchen.
Smiling, “Shit!” Mitchell said, then laughed.
“Poop? What do you mean, poop?”
“No, ‘shit.’ That’s what he told me to do: shit!”
“I don’t understand. What’s… what you said have to do with, uh, our problem?”
“Marcie, the owner of the place is the pharmacist. He’s an old Jewish guy, and when I came in he was talking in Yiddish to another old Jewish guy, and when I told him I have something important to ask him, he said, ‘So ask!’ And I told him that I wanted to talk to him in private, so we went to the back of the store and I told him that I’m a newly-wed and that I can’t… and believe me, it wasn’t easy to tell a perfect stranger that I couldn’t keep an erection. And… Marcie, this old guy looked at me like I was nuts, and asked if you’re ugly, and I told him¸ ‘No, she’s beautiful!’ And he said to me, like this: ‘Oy, mein, Goot. Me! I should have such problems!’ Then he told me that if I want to stay healthy and have everything in my body work the way it’s supposed to, ‘You should move your bowels every day!’ He asked if I had one today, and I told him no. And he told me, like this, ‘Go home, shit, be healthy.’ When I left the store, him and the other old guy were laughing. And you know what?”
Relieved to see his sense of humor had returned, “What?”
Coming into the kitchen, sitting, “To tell the truth, I can’t remember when I’ve, uh, made. Maybe not since the wedding. Remember?”
It’s embarrassing to go to the toilet to have a bowel movement when you live in a one-room apartment with your new wife in the very next room where she was able to hear every little—or not so little—peep.
“Do I remember?” She laughed. “How could I forget?”
“Hey, look. That’s really embarrassing for me. I don’t go ’round making fun of you because you fart in your sleep!”
“Me?” Sitting on his lap, “I do not!”
“Yeah, you do!”
Nuzzling her neck, “Do not, what?”
“You know; what you just said I do.”
“Fart?” Tempted to hold her breast, but not wanting to start anything he was afraid he couldn’t finish. “Oh, yeah, you do!”
“I do not! … Really?” She blushed. “I make poopers?”
“Poopers? You call them blasters, poopers? Yeah, really!”
Her blush changing from pink to crimson, “No, I don’t believe it!”
“Okay, then, don’t believe it… Anyway, I’ve a great idea.”