Q: An attractive woman lives down the hall from me in my apartment building. We’ve exchanged small talk, but that’s it. I often fantasize about her while masturbating. A few weeks ago the couple who live next door to me invited the woman to a barbecue. They asked her to bring me along. Puzzled, she asked why. The couple said they could hear us on some nights and assumed we were dating. When she told them we weren’t, it dawned on all of them that what they had been hearing was my moaning this woman’s name. A few days ago my neighbor—nice guy that he is—told me everything. I was speechless. He said the woman had seemed amused. I had wanted to ask her out, but now that seems comical. What should I do?
- - J.W., San Diego, California***A:* The next time you beat off, put the other sock in your mouth. The only way to find out if the object of your affection was horrified, mildly amused or totally turned on is to ask her out for coffee. You’ll have your answer in a nanosecond. For the record, the women in our office—an open-minded group, to be sure—universally agreed that this revelation would creep them out. If you can score in this situation, no woman will ever again seem like a challenge. You may have the balls to fess up, but a better strategy might be misdirection. That is, say hello, apologize for not introducing yourself earlier, ask her name as if you didn’t know it, then lie: “That’s funny. My ex has the same name.” She may not believe you, but it could plant a reasonable doubt, and that’s all you need for acquittal.**