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My bin Laden Orgasm by Lou Perez

June 14, 2011 By: Category: stories

Not Lou Perez.

Lou Perez is a funny sumunnabitch. I first met him years and years ago when he responded to a random Craig’s List ad to be an “intern” for my old publishing company, Contemporary Press. It wasn’t just my publishing company … there were seven of us. Our status as a legitimate organization was highly questionable; we conducted all of our business at a bar on Wednesday nights.

It was pretty apparent upon meeting us that we were a very ramshackle company and that interning for us would probably not get one any closer to working in the actual publishing industry than interning at McDonalds. But Lou was kind enough to pretend we were worth his time, hanging out with us for a semester and continuing to show up to our events, long past the days when we were not paying him to do work for us. And then he went all fancy and started an amazing sketch group and began doing stand-up and now I can shed a tear of pride as I present to you his hilarious and somehow poignant piece of fiction, “My bin Laden Orgasm.” (Note: this piece first appeared on his website, louperez.net.)

It has been over a month since it was announced that U.S. Navy SEAL Team Six killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, but my Brooklyn neighborhood—like all other cities and towns in the United States—is still abuzz with bin Laden conversation.

Today at the supermarket I was waiting on the checkout line when an elderly woman, whom I recognized from the soup aisle, approached me. Although I was looking right at her, she reached out to touch my elbow.

“Yes?” I said.

She smiled. “Where were you?”

“Me?” I had repeated the story so many times before; it was becoming staler with each repetition. “I was in Los Angeles visiting a friend. We were at a restaurant—a chain called Umami Burger. My friend and I sat at the bar. We were eating hamburgers and watching sports highlights on the television. We heard about bin Laden’s death—I mean we read about it—from the news crawler at the bottom of the TV screen.”

“Oh,” she said. She continued to smile. I knew what was coming next. “How good was your orgasm?”

I took a moment. I knew the answer the old woman wanted to hear—the answer she expected to hear. “It was the best orgasm I’ve ever had in my life.”

“They don’t come along very often,” she said. “Trust me. I’m a lot older than you. I was a little girl when Hitler put a bullet through his head—and that whore of his. I was so young I didn’t know what I was feeling. But it felt so good.”

I asked her if she’d like to go ahead of me, and she accepted my invitation. She piled her groceries onto the conveyor belt before I could lend a hand.

When the cashier scanned the first of her items the old woman turned back to me with that smile of hers.

“Sorry,” I said. It was my turn to ask her about her bin Laden story. “Where were you?”

“Well, my granddaughter had just left the apartment,” she said. “I think you’d like my granddaughter. She’s beautiful, smart—a lawyer. What’s not to like?”

Rather than tell her I was dating someone, I looked at the loaf of bread in my hand. Do I really need this now? I thought.

“I heard it on the radio,” she said. “And I had the orgasm right there in my kitchen. Thank God I didn’t fall down!”

The cashier, a black kid no more than 17, broke in to the conversation. “I was with my girl at the movies.”

“That’s so nice,” the old woman said. “I wish my husband were alive to experience it with me.”

“Yeah, we were watching Fast Five,” the cashier continued. “She got a text and we both nutted right there. It was so cool. Good movie too.”

I stepped out of line, deposited my loaf of bread into a basket on the floor near the register, and walked out of the store. Behind me I could hear all the voices of the supermarket shoppers and staff gather until they were one loud soundscape of orgasmic recollection.

*

Sitting at my kitchen table, breadless—and therefore without sandwich—I’m feeling bad about having lied to the old woman. No, my bin Laden orgasm was not the best orgasm I’ve ever had. Not even close.

I sat at the bar in Umami with a special hamburger topped with pastrami in my hand, and a big bite of it in my mouth, and felt—as I read the crawler on the TV—what I would describe as a jolt. I shook for a moment—was in no danger of choking, fortunately—then felt whatever semen I had ejaculated creep down my thigh and stop at the border of my underwear.

I looked to my friend sitting next to me who was convulsing—like everyone else in the restaurant. Someone looking in through the window would have thought there was an earthquake happening inside.

The rest of the night my cell phone was on fire with calls and text messages from friends and family with accounts of their bin Laden orgasms. My parents, short of breath, recommended I turn on CNN. While I watched the network’s news coverage of the citizens that had assembled spontaneously post-climax outside the White House and Ground Zero, my girlfriend called.

“I wish I could come like that all the time,” she said, unaware of the impact her words were having on me.

“Me too,” I said. “Me too.”

*

What’s wrong with me? I wonder. Why after 10 years of build-up—I was a sophomore at New York University in 2001, my dorm was not far from the World Trade Center, and I knew a fireman who perished—why didn’t I come harder? Why?

Perhaps I’ve been desensitized over the years, like a man so used to watching porn that the written word—even at its most erotic—isn’t enough to harden his flaccid cock. Maybe the news of Osama bin Laden’s death, with its sizzling details, just isn’t enough for me to bust a life-transforming load.

Maybe I need to see it happen: I need to see the erotic details of his death, the ones I’ve heard so much about—the two shots to the face—played out before me. Is there a tape of the attack? I’m sure there is. Can I download it? Soon, I hope. I hope.

I want to come. I want to come so hard. I want to feel what everyone else was feeling.

Lou Perez is Luis Amate Perez, a writer/comedian based in New York City. He produces videos and performs at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater with his group, Greg and Lou (www.GregandLou.com). His work has appeared in Fiction; Born in the 1980s; Rejected: Tales of the Failed, Dumped, and Canceled; Beyond Race Magazine; and Religion Dispatches. His blog is www.LouPerez.net. Follow him @LOUontheSUBWAY.

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