Matt Scott, digging through the orphaned archive of files after the rebuild of Imagine Magazine brings us another lost work from June 19, 2013 titled “Missed Opportunities”!
For an explanation of where these files are coming from, you’ll need to read THIS article first 🙂
Once upon a time, two boys were born in the same hospital, within just a few days. Their parents lived a very short distance from each other, just a few houses apart. They were even baptized in the same church, on the same day.
Those boys could have been the best of friends growing up, but unfortunately things didn’t turn out quite that way. Why? Well, even though they were the same age and lived so close together, they never really spent any time together. First they went to different pre-schools, and when the time came to start elementary school, they were sent to different classes because, technically, they lived on different streets. They moved on to different high schools and made friends along the way, but their circles of friends just never mixed.
Then, for a short couple of years, their paths did cross. Both boys were sent to church to prepare for their confirmation, so they had to go to class once a week. And since their way home was the same, they always walked together, talking, joking, quickly becoming good friends.
One of those boys was me, and I want to tell you a bit about the time we spent together.
Confirmation in our Protestant church usually happens when you are 14 years old, and for 2 years before that you have to regularly go to class to prepare for it. It was kind of a drag, but we all knew that it would pay off in the end with lots of presents and money from family and friends. Of course it was also right in the middle of puberty, when boys become very curious about their own bodies, about the bodies of other boys and girls, and about everything to do with the magic and mysteries of sex.
Fortunately, there was the ‘Bravo’. The Bravo was (and still is) a youth magazine here in Germany. It has the usual stories about movie stars and singers and athletes, but there are also advice columns about love, sex and relationships. Back in the 80’s, long before the internet came around, it was how we discovered such things.
Every Tuesday afternoon, on my way to church, I would buy that week’s issue of the Bravo. Then we would leaf through it before class started, and talk about it on our way home, comparing what we knew (or thought we knew) about sex and masturbation and condoms and orgasms and all those interesting topics. It was a time of many discoveries, even though they were all just theoretical.
Things started to change a little one summer afternoon. My friend was wearing shorts that day and sitting in a comfy armchair with his legs spread wide. Suddenly he sat up straight and said jokingly: “Hey, are you trying to look up my shorts to check out my dick?” “Oh please, it’s way too small to see anyway”, I replied. The teasing went back and forth for a little while until I finally dared him: “Ok, let’s go to the restroom and see who’s got the bigger one!”
Unfortunately that’s when class started, so we never got a chance to do anything that day. But from that day on our conversations on the way home changed slightly. Instead of just generally talking about sex, we started asking each other more intimate questions, mostly about how and where we jerked off or if any stuff came out when we climaxed. Usually he asked me and I gave him tips about how to do things. He was always small for his age, and apparently a late bloomer too, so I was happy to give him some pointers about how to do it. And all the time I was secretly wishing that I could show him instead of just telling him.
One evening we were walking home through a fairly dark alley, talking about boners and how often we get them. “I got one right now”, I said. “Really?” he asked. “Sure, I always get them when we’re talking about sex stuff. You can feel for yourself if you don’t believe me.”
At first he was hesitant, but after a quick look around I felt his hand on my crotch, tracing my hardon through my pants. “Wow, you do have a big one. It sure is bigger than mine!” he said. By that time we had reached the end of the alley and were almost at my house, so he quickly removed his hand and we went our separate ways.
That short touch remained in my mind and memory for quite some time, but I never saw an opportunity to bring it up again, let alone do more. That doesn’t mean that there was no such opportunity, but when one presented itself I chickened out.
It was during a weekend trip to a youth hostel with our church group. We were put in different rooms, which took away the opportunity to just check each other out while getting changed for bed. But then, during a break, he came to me and quietly asked: “Wanna go to the restroom and do what we talked about before? You know, compare dicks and stuff?” Boy, I sure did! But what came out of my mouth was: “We better wait until we get back home and do it there, there are too many people around here now who could see us.” And just like that, another opportunity for discovery was wasted.
If only I had gone with him right then and there! Because once we were back home, no other good opportunity presented itself, and neither of us tried to make one happen either. And so our regular time together ended and we went our separate ways again, only occasionally seeing each other from afar.
Many years later, after I had realized that I was gay, I heard the news that he was gay as well. That news intensified my regrets tenfold. All the things we could have discovered together if only one of us had been brave enough to make that first step. Not only could we have jerked off and discovered our bodies together. We might even have become boyfriends. We both might have come out at a much younger age too.
Chatting with him online, I learned that he had similar feelings back then and regretted not acting on them just as much as I did. But he’s in a relationship now, so we can’t make up for all those missed opportunities.