When I first started masturbating, all I knew how to do was rub. It rose from instinct when I first secluded myself in my parents’ attic one hot summer day, and in my itchy boredom straddled an old cardboard box that had held a guitar. Something about the position felt good; I had no idea what I was doing, but I knew I liked the pressure, and knew it would feel better if I pulled down my pants to get it. I humped that box until I had my first dry orgasm, and thought the wave of pleasure was heatstroke.
I caught on pretty quickly, though, and once I’d battered that guitar box down into pulp, I was humping everything I could wrap my juvenile little legs around. The side of the bathroom tub was one of my first regular humping spots. I discovered I could lay a towel or rug on the cold porcelain ledge—which was perhaps four or five inches wide—then rest my erect penis atop it while I lifted my little rump into the air and let it grind against the tub’s cushioned hardness. Looking at certain pictures helped. The occasional cartoon male rump in a Mad Magazine would do, but the real jackpot would be if I could filch one of the two copies of old Playboys that my father kept hidden in his bedroom. The shots of boobies didn’t arouse my interest, but both copies had fleeting images of near full-frontal male nudity, as well as shots of a shirtless Burt Reynolds that set my prepubescent heart a-fluttering.
There was a steel girder in my parents’ basement that proved another fruitful spot. I’d pull out a towel from the laundry basket, wrap it where my cock would go, and cling on with my thighs gripping tight. Like a little monkey, my prehensile toes gripping onto the girder’s inner ridge, I’d jiggle up and down with increasing rapidity until my skin would break out in gooseflesh and I’d go all shivery.
Finally I happened upon the best rubbing place of all: my parents’ bed. They had a simple mattress on box springs with no headboard and nothing at the foot. Moreover, the mattress was on the softer side, and perfect for digging into with my couple of inches of hard boy dick. When my folks were both out teaching, or at meetings, and I was left alone in the house, I’d creep into their room, align myself with one of the corners at the bed’s foot, brace my bare feet against the wood, and hump away. The bed had everything—a soft place to rest my head, something to clutch onto as I rubbed my way to a climax, a comfort in something familiar.
The day came months later, however, when at the conclusion of my usual daily gyrations I noticed that I’d left behind a dime-sized dollop of sticky fluid on my parents’ gold cotton bedspread. I made the stain worse when I attempted to wash it off with a wet sponge, and made a tiny moistness that would’ve dried in ten minutes into an ungainly wet spot that took nearly an hour to disappear—an hour I spent fretting that one of my parents would come home, only to immediately accuse me of sexual assault and battery on their mattress. Since I was producing semen, after that day I took my masturbation into my own bedroom, where I’d wad up my pillow and thrust against it until I finally climaxed.
That technique suited me for a very long time. Readers who’ve been with me longer know the answer, of course, but I know at this point some of my newer readers are wondering to themselves, Why didn’t you just jack off like a normal kid? It’s because it simply never occurred to me to use my hands. I know. It’s dumb. It’s obvious, even. I learned early that humping was the way to go, to get to orgasm; I stuck with the tried and true.
It wasn’t until I ventured into my first cruisy restroom in the basement of the downtown public library that I had a notion there were other ways to achieve the same goal. Once I’d locked myself into my stall and noticed the penciled scrawls on the tiles that told me that someone was there Thursdays to suck my sock (now I’m pretty sure that the original word had read cock, but some other wag had added an extra curlicue that confused me enough to make me think for a couple of weeks that sock was some underground slang for my penis), I settled my ass on the toilet seat and saw through a tiny peephole another cruiser pumping his erect meat with his clenched fist. And I thought to myself, Huh.
It was really a moment of revelation. I remember it vividly. There weren’t any actual trumpet sounds, nor a chorus of heavenly angels—but if I were recreating the moment on film, there surely would be. I couldn’t believe that I’d wasted so many months rubbing and humping and clinging to a metal girder with my toes, when I could’ve just been going at it with my two god-given hands.
I know from vast experience, though, that my technique has changed over the years. When I was a boy I used to begin by lightly sliding the balls of my thumb and index finger over the front and back of my dick. If I started getting close to orgasm from that light, tickly friction, I’d grip my skin more tightly and whip it back and forth until I came. In my mid-to-late teens I would get things started with a ring made by my thumb and pointing finger—but again I’d start with just sliding it up and down the shaft and concentrating it around the base of my head, until I was close enough to grab the shaft and let the cum fly. That became the technique I used for decades, until my forties. Since then I’ve been a full-fister who grabs onto the lower part of his shaft and beats lewdly. It’s a good way to show off on cam, and to my sex partners and potential sex partners at cruisy urinals.
I can’t help but wonder, however, how much of my natural instinct as a top comes from those rubbing days, when I’d grind into it until I came. Even without direction, without porn as a visual aid or any kind of prose as instruction, my instinct was to mount things and wiggle around until I climaxed. It’s how I learned to shoot as a kid—and these days, it’s how I prefer to shoot as a man, though I would much rather have a sexy butt to plunder than a porcelain bathing fixture or a willing mattress.