On Thursday, Jon Acuff at Stuff Christians Like told the story of being scheduled to get a ride back to the airport with a woman following a conference appearance. (To his credit, he requested another driver.) He then used the story as a springboard to discuss other contexts in which men and women suddenly find themselves in a situation with person of the opposite gender.
If you missed it, you should click here.
Jon obviously struck a nerve, because as of this writing, there are 172 responses to that short article.
I can relate. In my job I encounter times when I am relatively “alone” with someone of the female persuasion. But I relate more to his story because there is something much more intimate about being in a car with someone. When I was doing itinerant youth ministry, guys would sometimes want to talk and the car was probably the best place to get away from the crowds. And as for girls, well, that’s why guys buy cars in the first place. The bus and subway is far cheaper.
So while I often experience one-on-one discussions with women, I would estimate that probably only four or five times in the last twenty years have I been driving someone somewhere and it was just her and I. (A couple of specific people come to mind, and I’m assuming there were probably a couple of others.)
In the one type of case, it’s just a simple matter of conversation and transportation. In the other type of case, there is a sexual tension so thick you could cut it with a knife.
And in another case, that didn’t take place in an automobile, I was just talking to someone who seemed to, for lack of a better phrase, radiate some kind of sexuality or sexual energy. She wasn’t “hot” in the sense people use that word today, but there was some other thing going on that’s tough to define.
Fortunately, I had bright red “DANGER” signs flashing in my brain during that conversation.
So I already know that Jon’s post resonated with a lot of readers. I guess my question would be: What is it that creates the awkwardness or tension in some situations that is totally absent in others?