The Interview
This is an amalgam of several things I had written in emails to friends and people I met on-line.  I finally strung it together to tell a more cohesive story.




Sexually speaking, I always prefer when my partner initiates things.  It isn't that I'm lazy or afraid to make the first move; it's just so much more fun that way.  In early encounters in a relationship, I tend to hold back and let someone who is inhibited by nature --but clearly excited-- make as many moves as I can encourage without having to overtly invite her to do so.  “Less is more” is a good aphorism here.

I went through a “Sex, Lies, and Videotape” phase during my freshman and sophomore years in college.  I don't know if that movie had even been released by that time, but I think I arrived at the idea independently.  Basically, whenever I met someone interesting, I would eventually invite her to my dorm room saying that I wanted to interview her.  Not that I had a video camera or anything.  Most of these girls were relative strangers, just a friend of a friend or someone I had seen in a class.  For some reason, in spite of this, it was a surprisingly easy thing to accomplish.

How this all got started I can't even recall now, but somewhere along the way I got the idea that I would interview prospective girlfriends.  I composed a list of questions which eventually my roommate and other friends contributed to.  The concept was that this would be a cross between a job interview and a psychological profile.  That's pretty much how it played out, actually.  She would sit or lie on the bed and I sat at my desk and worked through the list on my computer, always with the screen facing away from her.

The first three questions were:
-Do you floss?
-Do you eat vegetables?
-What's your idea of the perfect man?

These were all relatively benign, but served to establish character, both hers and mine.  This one girl I liked a lot (well, except for her volatile temperament) gave me ten minutes or more just answering basic questions like the first couple above.  She was great at being really in-depth.  Not everyone had interesting things to say for each question, but the point was to find out if any of them were interesting as individuals.  Sometimes I was surprised, and that was always what I was hoping for.

I can't recall anyone giving me any especially weird answers, either in ways that could be interpreted as creative or in ways that might be more worrisome.  However, one girl who later became a friend of mine actually revealed some weird stuff about herself in an interview.  It was relatively benign, but I didn't expect her to say she was a third generation full-blooded Italian-American, so she wasn't going to marry anyone who wasn't of the same ethnicity.  In all honesty, she didn't have that many prospects that she could be so picky.  She was rather introverted, so I never would have found out something that central to her personality had it not been for the "interview."  Curiously, now that I think about her, she reminds me of the title character in "Secretary" in that she had a latent S&M side, which I only found out about later.  Who knew?!

Anyway, as the list went along, the questions gradually shifted in color and complexity.  Specifically, there were fewer yes and no or listing questions.  In their place were ones that required increasingly more involved answers.  I didn't want to hear what her favorite ice cream was.  I wanted to see if I could get real ideas out of her.

Of course, most of the questions on the list were either silly or philosophical, but every so often I would put forward an increasingly less innocent one like “Why do you think I am attracted to you?”  Then, a little later, “What kind of underwear do you prefer, cotton or silk?” before asking, “Do you want to make out?”

No matter what her answer was to this last one, I kept going right down the list as though I was satisfied with the answer and felt no need to act on it or even to ask any follow-up questions.  The point was always to keep my "subjects" a little off-base.  They never knew where things were going.  In fact, a lot of the time I would improvise questions and/or shuffle their order if it suited me.  Naturally, this was why the computer screen was always turned just a little towards me and out of view from her.

Now, on the other hand, if a girl said no, she didn't want to make out, then I just asked that question again a little later as though it had turned up on the list for a second time.  In the cases where I had to repeat it, her answer typically turned gradually away from the more certain “no” and into a gradually more playful one.  It was always fun to watch the resolve of an “interviewee” break down in such a relatively short time.

The atmosphere was completely different with each girl I interviewed.  It all depended on how she responded to the questions and what kinds of answers she gave.  In some cases I really played up the James Spader intensity.  With other girls, nothing phased them, so it was all for fun and I would just follow through on the implicit request to make-out.

Don't ask me how many girls I interviewed, I'm trying to remember that now!



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