During his freshman year at NYU, Ben let his hair

grow to his shoulders, and he cultivated a mustache and

beard that feebly grew out in patches like the mange.

He coolly acquired some “bad” friends for a brief time.

He lost his virginity to a girl named Wendy Walberg

in the basement rec room of her parents’ house (sound

track courtesy of Al Stewart) while partygoers reveled gleefully upstairs.

Wendy told him in this intimate setting that she knew

Ben had written the anonymous poems that she had received

and in this setting she said Yes I will Yes.


Paraphrases from the novel The Lecturer’s Tale by James Hynes.