Vancouver
3 min

Magnitude of impression

Will's new school year resolutions

Credit: Xtra West files

Two hours remained before the first lecture of the new school year. Will secured a coffee from Blue Chip Cookies, went out to the grassy knoll, tugged a notebook and pen from a canvas bag.



At the top of the first page, in optimistic, clear lettering, Will wrote “Resolutions For My 2nd Year at UBC.” He leaned back on the grass to appraise this line, to suck on his Bic.



He narrowed his eyes at the stream of passing students and bent into the process of inventing his new self:



Resolution #1: Will not jump headlong into committed relationship with utter stranger. Rather, will remain cool and aloof, sleeping with whomever I choose, however I choose. (Or else, what was Stonewall for?)



Resolution #2: Will not fuck straight boys as is clearly sign of internalized homophobia.



Will stopped, then, and chewed his pen. Did Resolution #1 perhaps disallow Resolution #2? He crossed out ‘Will not fuck’ and resolved, instead, to sleep with straight boys all he liked but never to fall in love with one. Love, after all, was where things really got sticky. Nodding to himself, he took another drink of coffee and pressed on.



Resolution #3: Will go to gym regularly. Special attention to be paid to pectorals and ass. This way, will look good from in front and also from behind (see Resolution #1).



That seemed to about cover everything. But, oh! One last addition! Will shook his head and wrote the final note.



Resolution #4: Will be exemplary student. Key goal-do not sleep, eat, ogle, dream, or stare out windows during class.



There. Perfect. If he could keep to these four simple rules, all else, surely, would fall into place. He shut the book, bubbling with inspiration over how easily this new life of his was coming together. He decided to get a head start on Resolution #3 and popped into the aquatic centre for a blitzkrieg workout before class.



Flashing his student ID at the lifeguard behind the desk, Will headed into the change room, into the pleasant mixture of musky sweat and sanitizing chlorine.



He had no gym attire to change into, but locked his bag in a cubby, pinning the orange tag and key to his jogging shorts, not without painfully pricking his own buttock.



Moving through the assemblage of casual men, each in his own state of undress, Will took a quick and expert inventory. There was the roid-monkey there, languorously drying his armpits, allowing the towel to screen a drug-shrivelled cock. Then the Italians, a pair, speaking in animated tones while undressing-as though to avoid through the distraction of argument any awareness of their mutual display. And finally, now, Will came to the showers.



The UBC Aquatic centre is mainly a swimming facility, so the change room funnels everyone into a shower room. But for those who go simply to pull on weights and jog on machines, this creates an odd experience. So it was that Will found himself walking, fully clothed, through a room of sizzling showers, populated by lathering men.



Mostly, the showers were as disappointing as they were brief. Tiny cocks knotted by overgrown hair. But wait, yes, an exception.



In the far corner of the showers, where the cool of the swimming pool outside made his breath turn to clouds, a 30something man was facing front, eyes shut. His body was tight and somehow intelligent. Wet eyelashes spun water onto high, noble cheeks.



His cock, lazy and tuberous between the legs, was the sort you might wish to sleep upon, drunkenly, as a dog will sleep on a pillow.



Will hurried by and decided during his hurried workout that he would call the stranger Horse Man-such was the magnitude of the impression.



Only 30 minutes later, Will had to head back through the showers, or else be late for class. On entering the cubicle of steam, though, he was brought to a momentary halt.



Lo and behold, the Horse Man was still there, applying gobs of conditioner to a thick swath of chest hair. He hadn’t moved in half an hour. What could this mean?



There was no time to ponder the eccentricities of the locker room just now. Will made a dash for his cubby, unpinned his key from their place on his shorts (jabbing, once again, his ass with the pin) and collected his things.



The buzz in the hallway of Buchanan Building was just finishing as Will hurried to class. No matter though; the professor hadn’t yet bothered to appear.



Will had just dated a page of loose-leaf when the door cracked and a familiar face entered. Horse Man, bound now by teasing stretches of khaki and pinstripe, walked to the front of the class.



“Good morning,” he said, “I’m Allan Cavalier, and this is English 210: Introduction to the Honours Program.”