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Forty-Five-½ Lovers takes one simple human act - sex - and turns it into forty-five stories of hope, lust, desperation, love, stupidity, romance, detachment, and redemption.

The tragic sex chronicles of Amanda Buffington - as told by Anika Kunik - explores the various reasons why women have sex in a colorful world filled with nuance. Amanda's stories are familiar, yet shocking, both hilarious and sad, and never fail to invite truthful conversation.


Lesson learned: If marriage is your goal, don’t have sex.


...I know, as the saying goes, I should be counting sheep, have another nightcap, a glass of milk and a cookie, or avail myself of the endless sleeping aids on the market. Believe me when I say I have tried them all, even counting sheep, but none work as well as counting my past lovers. (I realize there might be people who count the sheep they’ve had sex with, but I can’t relate.) What amazes me is not how many there are—I’m counting one for every year I’ve been alive, a lucky coincidence perhaps?—but that, invariably, this little game helps and I fall asleep. It really works. And I wonder, how is it possible that an act so beautiful and romantic, so exhilarating, thrilling, and yet so intimate at the time, becomes so luster-free and dull, so boringly forgetful that recounting the parties involved beats out any sleep remedy I have ever tried?

Some men I barely remember. Some have lost their name. Some never had a name. Have they forgotten about me? Is there one of them out there who thinks back about the moment when he looked into my eyes and said: “Oh, baby (honey, darling, sweetheart, plumpy, sugar, buttercup, love, gorgeous)… I want you.”


We fought. We fought in the office, we fought in the grocery store, we fought in the street, in the disco, in the kitchen, while buying a couch, we fought in the hallway…but not in the bedroom. He was the first who gave me the gift of an orgasm and once I figured out how, I couldn’t get enough. What a fabulous invention! We spent days and nights and weekends in bed and had sex, stopping only to take the occasional shower, which would invariably turn into sex, or the occasional meal, which would invariably turn into sex, or another fight, which would invariably turn into more sex.

We got along fabulously while having sex. We had sex in the back seat of an airplane while a frowning flight attendant pretended to ignore us. We had sex in a church, we had sex on the subway, we had sex during a U2 concert —Man, Bono can sing!—we had sex in a booth of a diner and during a showing of Poltergeist.

When we couldn’t have sex, let’s say because we were in a crowded public place (e.g. my mother’s tiny dining room during Christmas dinner), we fought. I can’t quite remember what we fought about, but it was probably about not having enough sex. He was tall, spoke with a sultry voice, was anatomically a fine species of a man and called me “Baby” with a raspy, Godfather voice. We had sex for two years and I thought I loved him.

One day, he said it was time for him to marry, and I said: “Oh, yes!” and he said, “Oh, no! You don’t understand!” and that he had met a “nice” girl, one that wouldn’t have sex with him and his mother would approve of.
I was devastated.

I cried, got drunk, cried, smoked three packs of Marlboros, cried, got drunk again and finally crashed on my most enabling friend’s couch. After three days of this pathetic display of self-pity—in my defense, I had no clue there was such a thing as Xanax—she put me in a cold shower, dabbed some powder on my ruby-red nose and dragged me to the nearest bar. It was an unfortunate coincidence that the first people we ran into were The Diamond Dealer and his “nice” future wife.

I wish I could say I behaved like the true lady I am but I didn’t and I slapped him. As hard as I could. Back to the smoking, drinking couch I went and it took me a long time to not think about him. He, of course, married the nice “virgin” and, of course, he is married to her still, even though they haven’t lived on the same continent in two decades.

From what I hear, he continues to have great sex, just not with her. He calls me twice a year and, for old times’ sake, we fight on the phone. Lately, he’s taken to asking me to marry him. After all, I was his first true love… I tell him politely that I wouldn’t want to touch him with a ten-foot pole.

He rasps: “Sure, baby.”

I point out that he would have to get a divorce first.

“Oh, yes!” he sighs, “I keep forgetting. Why does life have to be so complicated?”

Lesson learned: If marriage is your goal, don’t have sex.
Regret factor: 0
Heat index: 10

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