After landing my first grown-up writing job, I moved to Chicago. There, I met a man named Kal. Originally from Naperville, Kal had a nasal voice and a nervous habit of making fart noises with his mouth every time there was a pause in the conversation. For our third date, I'd taken the train all the way to the last stop on the Brown Line and walked several blocks on a dark, windy April evening to get to his apartment. I'd already made up my mind I'd be overlooking these shortcomings of his and be spending the night.

Kal, however, had other plans. We'd been making out on his couch for a solid 20 minutes when I busted out my signature move—that is, I tried to clumsily straddle him on his futon—when Kal pushed me off.

"You'd better leave before you miss the last train!" he exclaimed. I glanced at the time: It was 9:30 p.m.; the last train left Kimball Station at 1:30 a.m.

Subsequent dates would end similarly, with Kal abruptly calling it a night right at the point I expected sex to start happening. In the end, we never had sex, but years later, when I asked him about it, he confessed to having an STI and not wanting to have the