So, I was watching The Liquidator, a 1965 movie about Boysie Oakes, a ladies’ man who’s recruited as a spy after bungling into heroism during wartime. Oakes runs a café filled with bird cages, but his pastime is caging birds of a different feather—including a lovely lady in Carnaby Street clothes who leaves in a huff when an agent of Her Majesty’s Secret Service comes calling.

When Oakes expresses his dismay over her departure, the agent dismisses him: “You’ve got three other birds just like that one, with whom you operate in strict rotation.”

A man who dallies with three women in strict rotation. Who thinks up stuff like this?

Oh. Right.

You got it: The hero from a movie made in 1965, like Clay Creighton in Fast Lane in 2012, has a Rotation.

I love when unexpected confirmations like that make me feel like I’m onto something.

For instance, check out this from a recent Men’s Health.com article called 4 Things You Do That Kill Her Sex Drive:

“Some research suggests that somewhere between six and thirty months, relationships switch from passionate to compassionate—more affectionate than ripping each other’s clothes off,” says lead study author Robin Milhausen, Ph.D., a sex researcher at the University of Guelph in Ontario.

Here’s what I’d written in Fast Lane:

The Rotation consisted of three women who were at Creighton’s beck and call 24/7. Every six months, he dumped the most senior member and introduced a new plaything. Relationships arced, he said, starting out passionate and ending up routine, so a man had to bring in “new talent” to keep things exciting.

Score! And I’ll claim bonus points for figuring out while sitting on my butt something that took college professors months, even years, of rigorous research to discern.

In The Liquidator, Boysie Oakes is a comic James Bond whose dashing public persona is at odds with his bumbling private disposition. In Fast Lane, Clay is a comic Hugh Hefner whose oversexed public persona is at odds with his humbler private demeanor. He’s a playboy who has a Rotation and a heart of gold, not to mention a theory about similarities between love and war.

Clay’s not a spy, but he’s got secrets. And finding out the truth is what complicates matters for Lara in Fast Lane. I had fun writing Clay—and I hope, when you read Fast Lane, you’ll agree I was onto something.

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