In 2002 I wrote a screenplay IN HEAVEN ABOVE in which a former Soviet province saved itself from bankruptcy by holding a lottery with the prize of being the first man to have sex in space in their revamped space shuttle. I sent the scenario to a number of film companies. Rejection followed rejection followed rejection.
After an old girlfriend at CAA didn’t return my phone calls and I retired IN HEAVEN ABOVE to my closet with the rest of my unpublished manuscripts. They excelled at collecting dust.
Yet hope sprung, when last month I received a call from a Canadian film director. We knew each other through a mutual friend, who had been his lover. Both were married to other people. Divorce was out of the question, but he had read my script as a favor to her and we met at a Fort Greene wine bar for a quick tete-a-tete.
I saw my name in lights and we sat at a table and I asked, “What you think?”
“It was very funny,” Allyn replied without much interest and then asked, “Is sex in Space possible?”
I signaled the waiter for two wines; white for me, red for Allyn.
He was from Canada.
“According to all the research, no.”
“So no one has had sex in Space?” His time was worth thousands of dollars a minute. He spoke as if every word cost him a thousand dollars.
“No.” I was used to people picking my mind. This was a WOT or a waste of time, but I had ten minutes to spare.
“How can you be certain that no one has not had sex in Space?”
“NASA is too square. In fact NASA spokesman Bill Jeffs of the Johnson Space Center in Houston has said, “We don’t study sexuality in space, and we don’t have any ongoing studies on the possibility, plus astronauts are also very conservative by nature and will do nothing to jeopardize their seat for the next mission.”
I had extensively researched the Internet during the writing of IN HEAVEN ABOVE and knew the subject better than the President, mostly because living presidents other than Bill Clinton first think about death from above rather than sex.
“What about the Russians?” He was speaking with a ‘hurry up’ tone. Script pitches were usually a hundred words or less.
“The Russians have brought up guitars and vodka, but they were probably too drunk for sex.”
So no." His pushy voice reminded me why I hated LA.
His clock ticked faster than reality.
"No, I said probably, because the Russians will try anything and they also tried out several sexual positions for sex. One with guinea pigs. That report is censored by the NASA and Russian space authorities.”
“I don’t give a shit about guinea pigs.” Hollywood directors only cared about how much popcorn their movies sold for the producers.
“No, I don’t imagine you would.” I covered my snide tracks with a shovel of information. “Keep this in mind. The biggest challenge of sex in space is Newton’s Third Law.” My teachers at Xaverian Brothers and Boston College had excelled at foisting knowledge to their students. “So if I thrust, a woman is propelled farther from me. Coupling is considered nearly impossible in a weightless environment and scientists haven't come up with a solution?”
“But you have?”
“I was a Math major at university. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Only four positions work in space, but they need help. Are you familiar with the dolphin theory?”
A heart beat of silence revealed his complete ignorance.
“The Ocean is as much Space as Space. Buoyancy is the same as weightlessness and some scientists suggest that dolphin need a third party to help them mate in a near-zero-gravity situation. It always helps to have someone pushing, but also if you were strapped to a wall by Velcro, that might help the lack of gravity.”
"Sort of like a bondage menage a trois?”
“Yes, but the research of sex in Space has been limited by the religious constraints of the fundamentalists and Catholic Church, plus most of space missions have been with men and NASA doesn’t launch gay astronauts. At least none have come out of the closet. Plus there's another problem?"
"That there isn't enough blood in your cock to achieve erection." Enough men on Earth suffered from penile dysfunction to not have to spread their illness in Space.
"But if you took a Viagra, wouldn't the drug help the flow of blood to the penis?" The director was rich enough to have booked a future flight on Virgin's Space Shuttle.
"I'm not a scientist, plus I never use Viagra or Cialis, since those pills are only to help a man have sex with a woman whom he doesn't want to fuck, but if you google ‘sex in space’, you come up with nothing. It doesn’t interest the scientists and most of space missions have been with men and astronauts are not gay. At least none have come out of the closet.”
"Thanks for the information." He was digging for a story to steal.
I had a million of them.
"What about IN HEAVEN ABOVE?" I was hoping for an advance.
"It's funny and an unusual story, but this is America. No one here is interested in foreigners having sex in Space." He was leaving town this week to film another TV show for HBO.
"Space is not for the angels." This call had been a waste of my time and at my age time was not a luxury.
"And monster aliens. If you come up with a good monster screenplay, give me a call."
Allyn dropped $20 and left the bar for a rendezvous with a woman who wasn't his wife.
He hadn't drank a sip of his red wine.
“Yeah, right." I finished my wine, remembering the price of a celestial space tours offering weddings.
"$2.3 million per person.
A lot of but a honeymoons in orbit can’t be far behind this venture into Space with special suits made for the conjugal passage through the stars. Space hookers will be next, unless we’re heading for Venus, which everyone knows is populated by blue-skinned vixens in fur bikinis and they do it for free.
Same as me letting Allyn pick my brain, but really I cost more than a glass of wine and I drank the rest of Allyn's wine.
I wished it was white, but it was more real than Sex in Space.
At least until I got back to my wife in Thailand.
Mam sends me to the moon.