Every year, Easter Sunday sees happy children hunting in grass and bushes for Easter eggs. Last Easter saw two grown men hunting in gas stations for bush.
Let me backtrack.
I spent the holiday in Atlanta with my brother and sister in law. A close buddy from the Army lives an hour away, so I visited he and his family the day/night on Saturday.
After a late night of drinking and telling the same stories/lies we’ve been telling for nearly twenty years, Joe and I awoke with cottonmouth as opposed to the energy of Peter Cottontail. But his five-year old son quickly inspired us to join the fun.
Then I got a text from my friend Allan. “Never expected to see you in the pages of my Playboy.” He included a camera phone pic of the page. Happy-freaking-Easter!
I’d forgotten all about that.
In November 2010, Fast Copy did a cool article on me regarding LOVE AND OTHER DRUGS, the movie based on my book Hard Sell. The freelance writer mentioned that she also edits Hugh Hefner’s magazine’s “My Favorite Playmate” segment each month. She thought it’d be hilarious to have “the Viagra Guy” recall his special centerfold. “Who’s yours, Jamie?”
I had no idea what her name was. But I knew I’d know her if I saw her.
Long dark hair. Big glasses. Bigger breasts. Thigh-high stockings revealing early 80s bush. Kind of an office sort of look, with clothes partially on.
She had appeared in an issue smuggled behind my best friend James’s house; he’d gotten it from his oldest brother Billy. Hiding in the woods, where no adult could bust us, we gawked at the beauties.
Sitting on the phone in my Manhattan Beach apartment, I did some quick math: my favorite Playmate must be from 1981 or 82; once I reached junior high skin mags were pretty commonplace. (But not in our house, Mom!) So, I googled “Playmates 1982″ first, but didn’t find her. It took only a second for me to spot my dream girl: Ms. June 1981.
“Cathy Larmouth,” I practically sang to the writer. It felt a little weird to admit this to a woman, for some reason. I asked if being in the magazine meant Hef would invite me to The Mansion. “Uh, no.”
And that was the last I’d heard of it. Until Allan’s text. And the dozen of texts/emails I received from pals around the country. All of them shared a similar theme: You ruined my, uh, viewing experience. I had no idea so many of my friends subscribed to Playboy.
My then-girlfriend shared their lack of excitement. “Greeeeaaat,” she said. Delirious, I didn’t pick up on the sarcasm. Instead, I forwarded her the picture Allan had sent me. This proved to be less than ingenious.
When we’d first started dating, she asked me what my “type” was. Having decided to embrace complete honesty in a relationship for the first time, I told my blonde, blue-eyed gal, “Dark hair and dark eyes.” This disconnect between my dreams and reality came up more often that I thought possible, teaching me that there is a fine line between honest and stupid.
Upon receiving the forwarded photo, she grew less enthusiastic. Apparently, seeing naked photographic evidence of my type was the equivalent of having all the contents of her Easter chocolate eaten by the family dog.
My sister, upon seeing the photo, commented, “Jesus.”
Back in Georgia, I had more important things to worry about: like, getting my hands on the actual magazine. Which is how Joe and I came to spend an hour on the day of Christ’s resurrection driving from gas station to gas station looking for Playboy.
Nobody had it. In fact, none of these places had any skin mags at all. “What the fuck is happening to this country,” Joe asked. The further we looked, the skeevier we felt. Alas, I never did get a copy. (Note: I did not share that disappointment with my ex.)
I’m writing this blog from my brother’s dining room. In a few minutes, I’m getting in the car and driving out to Joe’s house. It’s gonna be a fun time, but I doubt it can measure up to seeing my face so close to my naked dream girl.