Today is my mother’s birthday. This is her birthday card.
It was a windy and lonely October evening. I was in my bedroom, the overhead lamp flickering, as I IM-ed with Allison, a New Hampshire woman who wrote a knitting blog.
“Do you really want to do this?” I asked.
“What do you want me to do?”
“Go down on me. That really turns me on.”
I took a deep breathe. I was nervous. Although this wasn’t real sex, I felt the same sense of performance anxiety. I tried to visualize Allison in her bedroom. I wish I had bought a web-cam so I could at least see her face.
“Are you undressed already?” I inquired.
“Yes. I’m on my bed with my laptop next to me.”
I started typing, touching the keys gently, fearful of what my lustful emotion might bring forth, bursting from me like water from a broken dam.
“I’m kissing your thighs. I’m kissing you around. I’m uh…”
“Are you kissing my sweet spot?”
“Yes. I love your sweet spot. Can you feel me?”
“I can feel your tongue. It feels so good.”
Wow. Wow. Wow. This was more intense than I could ever imagine.
“I love doing this to you. I love feeling you move to my touch.” I quickly typed.
There was a long pause on the other side.
“I don’t know if I can type and take care of myself at the same time.”
“So don’t type,” I replied, always the gentleman. “Let me do all the work.”
“You’re amazing, Neil. Really.”
Just as I was about to dive back into this virtual reality, my mother knocked on my door.
“Neil, there’s a phone call for you in the kitchen.”
“Not now!” I shouted.
“It’s that producer from Los Angeles!”
I had been waiting all week for the call from this producer. Had he liked the first 30 pages? Is this a good sign that he is calling so late in the day? Or a bad one? I had to make a quick decision between business and pleasure. Art and commerce won out. I ran into the kitchen, where my mother was making dinner.
“Ed, how are you doing?” I said to the producer on the phone, trying to sound as confident and polished as possibly without letting on that I am in the middle of giving virtual oral sex to a blogger/knitter in New Hampshire. “Oh, you mean you DIDN’T like the first act?”
I could see frustration on the face of my eavesdropping mother.
“What didn’t he like about it?” she asked. “What does HE know?”
“SHHH…” I said to my mother. The last thing I needed was getting my mother involved in any drama. Besides, the producer didn’t know my mother was here. I had told him that I moved to New York to shack up with this hot Asian NY model I had met in a Santa Monica bar, not to live with my mother in Queens.
I continued to listen to the producer’s notes, most of them making very little sense.
“Well, I can rewrite that first act if you want?” I said, pasting on a fake smile. ” Uh, I don’t know. Do you really see Jake as a Ben Stiller-type? Oh, you do? I think it is a, uh, great idea. I love Ben Stiller!”
“I don’t like Ben Stiller at all,” said my mother, shaking her head. “Jerry Stiller, yes. But I saw Ben Stiller in that “museum” movie on HBO. That was terrible.”
“Ma!” I said, scolding my mother, before I realized I was still on the phone. “My God, Ed, I meant — that is a exceptionally good idea,” I continued on, stumbling with my tongue. “I’ll get to work on it right away. What? Notes? From Evelyn? Now?”
The producer wanted me to talk to his brainy development assistant for more notes. She was not very fond of me. Our relationship turned sour when she caught me looking down her blouse during a “story” meeting at the Polo Lounge. Now I had to endure her nasty, passive-aggressive notes. This could take another twenty minutes.
“OK, put her on. I’ll be back in a second.”
I rushed back into my bedroom. Allison was still online, texting furiously.
“Oh, Neil, I never felt like this before. You are F*CKING AMAZING! I feel so bad, so dirty, but so good. You know exactly how to reach me with your tongue, with your hands. I want to feel you inside of me.”
Apparently, I was quite a stud while I was away.
“Uh, I’m not sure I can type anymore either.” I wrote back. “I need to take care of something.”
“Yes, yes. Take care of yourself.” said Allison, the friendly knitting blogger from New Hampshire. “I know your big, hard man-thing needs care. Stop typing and take care of it. Make me feel like a woman. Oh yeah, that’s it. I feel it. Oh, I love it. I LOVE IT!!”
While this was doing wonders for my ego, I didn’t have the time. Hollywood was calling. My career was on the line, and Evelyn was on the phone. I made a mental note to myself have more virtual sex in the future, because, as evidenced by Allison’s reaction, I was much better at it than real sex.
I ran back into the kitchen. My mother was nearby, chopping up vegetables for a chicken soup.
“Do you know where I put the extra aluminum foil?” asked my mother.
I shrugged and my mother disappeared down the hallway. I picked up the phone.
“OK, Hi, Evelyn.” I said to the young Harvard grad, the type of woman who at college would walk right past me with her nose held high. “Sure, I want to hear you notes. Will it take long? I was busy uh, writing, and I don’t want to lose the momentum when the blood is flowing. Ten pages of notes? Oh, sure. Go ahead. Yes, yes, I heard. The main character. More Ben Stiller-like, right right….
I faked like I was jotting down notes.
Meanwhile, my mother discovered the aluminum foil on top of the drawer in my bedroom, where we stored various bulky and duplicate items, like the 24 rolls of toilet paper that I had recently bought at Walgreen’s.
As my mother was about to leave the room, the foil in her hand, she heard a beep from the laptop. Allison, the knitting blogger, was busy sending messages on IM. My mother walked over, as curious as Yenta the Matchmaker.
“I love the way you take me.” wrote Allison. “You are like an animal. You make me so wet and horny, Neil. I’m such a bad bad bad girl when I feel you inside me like this. Make me come like a wild beast. Do it, Neil. Do it!!!”
My mother wasn’t sure what to do. Her maternal instinct was to help her son. At least he was coming out of his shell and interacting with nice women other than Sophia.
“Perhaps I should take a message while he is out,” she thought.
She sat down and typed a message.
“Hi there, Allison. I just wanted to tell you that Neil had to take an important phone call from a movie producer in LA. He’ll be back with you in a few minutes. OK?”
After a brief pause, came her response.
“Who is this?” asked Allison.
“This is Neil’s mother. I was passing by when I saw your messages.”
“Jesus Christ! Neil’s mother! My god, this is the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to me. I promise, I never did this before. This is my first time ever. Oh my god!”
“Don’t worry about it? Are you and Neil going to date? Are you Jewish?”
“No, we’re not going to date. I’m married. I have a a year old baby.”
“So, why are you fooling around with Neil on the computer? What about your husband?”
“It’s a long story.”
“What’s the problem?”
“It’s just after the baby, things changed. With Russell”
“Yeah, that happens. That happened with me and Artie, too, after Neil was born. Neil was such a demanding baby!”
“Maybe it was my fault. I’ve always had a bit of a problem with sex. I don’t know, it’s hard for me to have an orgasm.”
“Is Neil really exciting you THAT much?”
“Not really. He’s OK. But I was faking it a bit cause he seems so insecure on Twitter. He does seem very nice and funny, but not really my type. A little too insecure. Why are nice guys always so insecure?”
“Have you tried exploring your own sexuality with a vibrator?”
“I bought one online, but I don’t know. Maybe I just don’t know what to do with it.”
“Which one do you have.”
“Oh, that is a good one. I hope you didn’t pay full price for it. I know where to get them on sale.”
“You have your vibrator nearby?
“It’s in the drawer.”
“Get it. I’ll give you some tips on how to use it! I think this will really help you with some of your problems. Then you can show your husband what to do.”
“Thanks, Mrs. Kramer. You’re really cool!”
A half hour later, back in the kitchen, I finished my conversation with Evelyn. I had a migraine and my head was spinning. Now I was going to change the sidekick into a black woman to make the screenplay “different.”
“Thanks for the notes…” I said, but Evelyn had hung up on me before I had the chance. I love Hollywood.
My mother had just returned to the kitchen, and was back working on her chicken soup. Living for a year, as an adult, with my mother, has been a difficult experience. I frequently feel ashamed when I tell people about it, and I wonder if they are laughing behind my back. But one positive outcome about living with your mother is — her chicken soup! She may not be hip or trendy or know anything about Twitter, but you can always depend on a mother to cook her son some soup! But I need to get out of here. Once I build my confidence again, off I go — back into the real world!
I returned to my bedroom. I immediately noticed that Allison was online, waiting for me. She was in a ecstatic mood, as if she had just seen the sun shining after years of darkness.
“You just gave me the best orgasm I ever had in my life” she wrote. “Thank you, thank you, thank you!”
“I did?” I asked, a little surprised.
“That was like a master class in having an orgasm. How did you get so good?”
I sat up a little taller in my chair. I felt like a King. Maybe I SHOULD feel more confident about myself.
“Well, I’ve always been good doing research, from school. I’ve read a lot of pornographic books. Online videos. I learned. But who knows? Maybe it just comes naturally. Maybe being a great lover is all about genetics.”
“That I believe. Genetics. From now on, every time I have an orgasm, I will thank God for the Kramer family. See you, Neil. Gotta go. My husband just got home and I want to show him something!”
Happy Birthday, Mom!