So Take Me Back to Constantinople

Posted on November 2, 2012


This story is from Roxie, a 22-year-old student in Boston, as told to Raz:

Hank and I were hooking up during my freshman year of college. He was gorgeous and totally jacked. We had tons of chemistry in bed, but in general, we had absolutely nothing in common and very little to talk about. Most of our conversations happened by text after 2am.

After one drunken Saturday night out with girlfriends, I texted Hank to meet me at my dorm. He showed up at my door covered in dirt and was limping as he walked from my dorm lobby to my first floor room. He said he’d tried to hurdle a trashcan, failed miserably and probably sprained his ankle.

He was clearly even drunker than I was. When we got to my room, I sat him in a chair, and I bent down in front of him to take off his shoe and see if his ankle was swollen. That’s when I heard giggling from outside my slightly cracked window. My girlfriends had apparently decided to spy on my hookup, and from the angle they were at, it looked like I was kneeling down in front of my man for a very different reason. I shot a nasty look in their direction, closed the blinds and pressed play on my iTunes to suppress any sounds.

I supported Hank as he hobbled over to my bed, and he pulled me down with him onto the mattress. We started making out—and then having sex.

The sex wasn’t as great as usual: Hank was clearly distracted by the pain in his foot, and I was distracted by the potential to hear knocking on my window at any second. But apparently the universe decided things weren’t awkward enough. The song playing ended, and my iTunes, on shuffle, started blasting “Istanbul (Not Constantinople).” You know it: “Istanbul was Constantinople; Now it’s Istanbul, not Constantinople; So if you’ve a date in Constantinople; She’ll be waiting in Istanbul.” If you don’t know it, it’s completely hokey and shouldn’t be on anyone’s playlist unless they’re under the age of ten or over the age of 65.  Needless to say, it totally killed whatever was left of the sexy-time mood. I started laughing, Hank went completely soft and we called it a night. That was the last time I hooked up with Hank.

But, wait. This story’s not over. About three weeks later, I was in my college’s health services building to pick up a birth control prescription. While I was sitting in the waiting room, one of Hank and my mutual friends walked in.

“Oh,” she said. “Are you here to get treated for Chlamydia?”

What a strange thing to ask someone! We weren’t even that close! “No,” I said. “Why?”

“Well because Hank has it,” said the girl with no boundaries. “Didn’t he tell you? Apparently, he’s had it for a while. A bunch of girls are really pissed.”

I got tested that day. I didn’t have it. Apparently I’d gotten out just in time.

To this day, I cringe whenever I hear that Constantinople song, but I still haven’t deleted it from my iTunes. After all, annoying as it may be, it’s the song that saved me from Chlamydia.

Posted in: Your Stories