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Peep Show


Our government (it doesn’t feel like it belongs to us, but it does) is pissed off about the Afghanistan Wikileak. I started work on The U.S. Police State: Part II: Internet Filtering, wherein I would warn you about the coming Internet censorship. The censorship will arrive in response to a Child Pornography/Sexual Predator crisis in the same way that 9/11 provided a convenient excuse to trample the Constitution. 

But along the way, I got distracted by a memory.

So, consider yourselves forewarned about the coming Internet crackdown. ‘nuff of that. I’m shifting gears.

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For my Junior-year at Ohio State, when I was all of 20 years old (I think that’s right), I rented a dilapidated two-story house south of campus in a neighborhood of working class families.

In the spring, with the world budding all ‘round me, I discovered her. I never knew her name so I’ll call her Daisy. I’d seen her before, walking with her little sister to school, texts clutched to her breast like a suckling child. A teenager of about 15 was my guess. Daisy lived directly across the street.

Retiring uncharacteristically early one evening, I walked into my second-story bedroom in boxers. Across the street, framed by a parallel, glowing window was Daisy. Nubile teen in panties and bra. We froze and looked at one another across the narrow city street. I expected her to cover up or flip off the light. She did neither. She just looked. We looked. And looked a little more. And then she moved to the light switch and that was that.

A few nights later, at about the same hour, we re-enacted the scene. This time Daisy, facing the window, removed her bra to reveal small, perfect alabaster breasts before pulling a t-shirt over her head and retiring.

Five years age difference, more or less. A 30 year-old man with a 25 year-old woman? Yawn. But she wasn’t 25 and I was a pretty smart kid. I knew Daisy was jailbait. I had no intention of going beyond our little peep show. Daisy was a cute little girl but not especially fetching and by the looks of her mother the future, perhaps, wasn’t so bright. Nothing worth risking my own future over but there wasn’t anything illegal about looking. Was there? Frankly, to this day I’m not sure.

Nonetheless, I would once in a while pass on or delay the Oar House drinking bouts with the buddies. Being home alone at 9:30 p.m. or so suddenly seemed like a good idea. I’d often catch her waiting for me.

It wasn’t an every night thing but it progressed. Daisy never acknowledged me with so much as a wave but she would slowly undress and lie down on her bed, which backed up against the opposite wall facing the window. I’d continue to stand since my bed was not so conveniently positioned and drop my boxers. We’d watch each other until. Until. Well, you know.

When I’d encounter Daisy on the street, she’d look the other way and scurry home. We never spoke and hardly met each other’s gaze outside of our respective inner sanctums.

I sometimes worried that a passerby would notice or that one of her parents or the younger sister would come bursting through her bedroom door but it never happened. And a little danger only enhanced the experience. The adventure continued intermittently, following more or less the same script, until I left for the summer.

In the fall when I returned to OSU I took an apartment on King Avenue, a mile or so west of the old house, close to my new part-time job. I thought about Daisy hardly at all. It would be many years later before I told anyone my story (I certainly couldn’t have trusted my college friends).

The Daisy experience was not lurid. I do not believe it was pornographic. Daisy is stored in the part of my mind reserved for sweetness and innocence.

I hope it was as good for her as it was for me.

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