BETWEEN THE ‘SHEETS’ • by Christopher Kastensmidt

First of all, I should never have married a nympho. But how was I to know in those carefree days of my early twenties that there would ever come a time in which I would think about anything besides sex?

I met Sally during my last year of college, at one of her sorority’s parties. A night with a blond sorority girl is every frat boy’s dream, and Sally fit the bill.

“Hey, Tiger,” was the first thing she ever said to me, a half-empty cup of fuzzy navel sloshing around in her left hand.

Can you believe it, a cheesy line like that from a woman? Easy prey, I figured. Little did I know who the real prey was that night.

We hooked up, but from lack of a free bed in the sorority house, I had to take her on a second date to close the deal. We had dinner the next evening and afterwards, Sally obliged my every desire. I considered leaving it at that, but the sex was so good that I went back for seconds. Soon, we were doing it almost every night, sometimes three or four times. And I’m talking wild sex here: all the good stuff.

Whenever I wanted it, Sally was good to go. At least that’s what I thought at first. Soon, however, it dawned on me that she was the one instigating. She would walk through the apartment in a teddy at two p.m., turn on Cinemax on weeknights, casually rub a firm breast on my arm as she looked over my shoulder; the woman was insatiable.

After a year or so, Sally demanded that I “take it to the next level or hit the road.” I grudgingly accepted. How could I give that up?

So I married my nympho girlfriend: first mistake.

My second mistake was buying her the damn thing. The computer, I mean.

A few weeks after our honeymoon a work bonus was burning a hole in my pocket, so I had to blow it on something. I told Sally the computer was a gift for her, but the truth was I wanted to play some video games, and buying a PlayStation seemed childish.

So I showed her how to surf the Internet, use Word–all the typical stuff. To my surprise, she began using it daily. Soon she was asking questions like “What’s a gigabyte? What’s a blog? How do I increase virtual memory?” Within weeks she knew more about the thing than I did. I didn’t have a chance to play my games, but she certainly seemed to enjoy it, so I considered it money well spent.

The years went by, and I knew I wasn’t performing as well as Sally desired. I just got tired, I swear. Marriage, kids, long hours at work…seems like you don’t even have time to think about sex. At least I didn’t.

Then came the day of reckoning.

I came home late from work and she called me into the study. She was sitting in front of the computer and I knew she meant business, because she was wearing her “take me serious” glasses.

“We have a problem,” she said.

“What’s that?”

“Our rate of lovemaking has reduced significantly.”

I got defensive. “That’s not true, we’re still doing it maybe three times a week.”

“I don’t think so.”

“What do you mean?”

“We’re having sex an average of one-point-three times a week. And some weeks, not at all.”

I forced out a nervous chuckle. “One-point-three? What kind of a number is that? That’s nonsense.”

“Oh yeah?” she challenged. “Take a look at this!”

That’s when she opened up “the spreadsheet”: hundreds of tiny cells listing every time we had done it for the last three years. And a rating for each one.

“You keep a spreadsheet?”

There it lay before me: modern man’s downfall. For tens of thousands of years, married men could “round up” their sexual activity, with no way to prove otherwise. But then spreadsheets came along and precise analysis was just a touch away.

She didn’t let up. With an ominous click of the mouse she opened a chart. “As you can see by the graph I made, both quantity and quality have been decreasing.”

The line graph on the screen showed a depressing downward curve, subtly implying a different type of limp curve. I never was a big fan of symbolism.

I didn’t say another word. I just turned and walked out.

What could I do? For a while I thought of leaving her, I really did. I considered moving to a country without computers, until I saw a report on the news with some Peruvian natives using an Internet kiosk in the middle of the jungle. Unbelievable.

So, I had to accept my situation.

There’s nothing left to do but get lots of exercise, plenty of rest, and try to work my ratio back up.

That, or a carefully placed magnet near the hard drive.

I just wonder if she keeps backups.

If Christopher Kastensmidt could go back and do it all over again, he’d add a twist of lime. His fiction can be found crumpled up in trash bins in four different countries.

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Joseph Kaufman