Compairing Circumcision During The Lunar Eclipse

I remember the circumstances pretty clearly, considering it was about 40 years ago that it happened. I was 16 and had just learned to drive the family car.

My closest male friend in high school, David, was a devoted christian, and we hung together quite a bit as a result of the church youth group. In  the summer of 1972, we were great pals, and the movie "Summer of '42" was all the rage. Rock music was on the radio, and we had yet to discover girls, let alone do anything on a date.

There was a lunar eclipse predicted late night for July 26th, 1972 visible over North America, and the skies were expected to be clear. In order to see it, my friend David had invited me to sleep over in their family's pop-up camper parked outside their home in a subdivision of our small Michigan town. Somewhere along the way, Brad was also invited (he lived in the same subdivision) and it was to be a "boy's night out". David's younger brother Paul was not home for this event, but he also would become a good friend. Most our our little group would gather to play "Risk" (a long board game) and drink pop from the local bottler.

I knew Brad as being an over-baring, out-going loudmouth who liked to laugh. I had  Phys Ed class with him during freshman year.  All three of us were in the same church youth group,  religion was a popular topic and the peace through Christ christian movement among the youth was still surging. It was the time of  Expo '72 and witnessing, of "one-way" and bible studies.

Unfortunately, the others in our little male social circle,  couldn't make it or didn't show. And so the three of us were in the camper talking about life and things by flashlight as the night wore on. Along the way, the topic turned to the Bible and what circumcision actually meant.

Now, understand that most all babies born in our  somewhat rural Michigan area were always circumcised, but nobody talked much about it in public. Nobody questioned  why it was done, or the health benefits to such an action. Only those rare individuals who had NOT been circumcised at birth stood out in gym class or at the men's urinal in the boys' bathroom. They looked different.

One was Steven S, a boy I suspect was Jewish and played the violin, who had moved into town right across from our elementary school. His penis looked different, and for some reason, I suspected that it was because he was Jewish, or that his parents eventually divorced. Our family was encouraged to befriend them, and we did, but it was a forced friendship. I only remember him because of his pencil- thin **** at the urinal.
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But back to the camp out:  Brad wanted to talk about circumcision. I had been in Freshmen phys ed class with him, and so, had showered in the group showers and swam nude in the indoor swim class with him. (Yes, our phys ed class swam in the nude in the enclosed pool.)  I knew what he was packing. And it seems to me if he had not been circumcised, I would have noted it.  He was through puberty but no Greek God.  Stout but not overweight.  But I hadn't thought anything about it at all, until this night.

Tentatively, Brad had suggested that he had read in the Bible about being circumcised and that it was a sign of the covenant with God. But he also suggested that he didn't know what circumcision WAS. He hesitated, "How do I know if I have been circumcised or not?" The question was so unlike him, so out-of-character, that I was immediately on-guard.

We tried to clarify, though the topic was an awkward one. I suggested that virtually ALL males in the US were being circumcised nowadays, for health reasons. (I had blanked that he was in phys ed with me... or I could have put an end to it real quick.)

"But what does it LOOK like", he was asking... and I felt  he was manipulating us to whip one out and show him. I dodged, by attempting to describe an uncircumcised man's penis as like a banana with the peel peeled back about an inch down the shaft, but the various splits healed up, so that though it still covered the head, it was loose and could be folded back. It was a clumsy example, and I was drawing from my readings in the Joy of Sex and others sex ed books to describe what I understood to be the truth.  (I don't know where I had gotten to see the Joy of Sex at age 16. In fact, I'm not even certain that it was out in paperback yet by that year. So I must have learned somewhere else...possibly "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex" by Dr. David Rubin.  That WAS out in paperback.)

Still, he was unsure. In hind sight, it was clear that he wanted either for one or both of us to whip it out under flashlight in the darkened camper, or to give him permission to do it. And that's what we should have done. We should have told him to drop his drawers and that we'd check him out.

However, had we done that, we might have been guilty of something that Brad just might have turned to his advantage and our embarrassment in our social circle. Can you imagine what the church youth group would buzz about, if this got out?  We'd never live it down.

No, I just assured him that he was most likely circumcised, and that if he had further questions, he should approach our youth pastor, a cool married dude who had mutton-chops and a liberal attitude. Rev. Don would set him straight if his questions were legit.  I doubted that he'd pursue it, but Don could handle it. (Rev. Don counseled unwed mothers, and was one of the two clergy in town involved in the crisis intervention center. )

The talk dwindled, until we all had fallen asleep. Someplace in the night, my bladder was full, and I had to pee.
I got up carefully, and opened the door, letting myself out into the chilly night air. The moon shown big and bright, illuminating the grass and bushes. We were supposed to go inside the house to use the bathroom, but I got cold feet and decided it was just as well, if I  just "watered the bushes."

As I stood there peeing on the dark evergreen bushes in front of my friend's house, I looked up at the extremely bright moon, and noticed it had a large chunk of it missing. I thought about it for a moment, as my bladder emptied, and I reasoned that if the horns of the moon's crescent were pointed down, that the sun would have to be up...yet it wasn't. They were pointed down!  Suddenly it hit me that the lunar eclipse was well underway, and that we were sleeping through it all. I  returned my **** into my drawers as I turned to look at the moon over my shoulder.

I knew that a lunar eclipse was a SLOW process, ever since we had watched one outside our living room window in the mid-60s during the Johnny Quest prime time TV show. It took hours to complete. So, I knew there was no point to my standing out there and freezing, and there was no point to waking the other two guys either. They probably wouldn't have cared. Our discussion of other topics and IMPORTANT things like ***** and circumcision had driven the entire reason and point of the over-night from our minds. And I didn't care to wake the others with my discovery.

I slipped inside the camper and back into my sleeping bag. I dropped off to sleep quickly.  The next morning, we woke up, folded up our blankets and went inside for a bite of breakfast.  I loaded my bag and pillow into my folk's car and drove home to spend the rest of the weekend with them.

I never thought again about Brad until recently. As my son reaches the same age, we have another lunar eclipse coming this week.
And I still don't trust Brad... he obviously wanted us to get naked back then. But now days, I'm wondering if I had it to do over again, if I might had done it....whipped it out and shown my flashlight on my gleaming white ****. Or his.  Certainly, at that age, I didn't care about it. Only the social stigma.

What would Brad have done? What would David? Would it have turned into a circle jerk? Would we have talked about ************, a topic NO one would admit to back then, but we were all doing once or twice a week?

I'll never know.

Five years later, Dave's young brother Paul was killed in an auto accident on the way to a church meeting. It would be the last time I saw tears.
studfinder studfinder
56-60, M
1 Response May 31, 2012

Christian mothers and Christian doctors made sure a boy's penis was clean-cut early on, so it's likely you all were circumcised (and the Jewish guy obviously too, of course, unless he wasn't Jewish at all). No Christian mother would have tolerated a foreskin on her baby's penis beyond the first few days after birth. There wasn't even at the time a discussion of hygienic and health advantages, it just followed the basic religious covenant that penises had to be circumcised. Luckily, it made sure you had all the advantages...