Two Tents

Story Sent in by Charles:

Agnes and I had been together for six months when we went on a camping double-date with James and Lisa, another couple who were our friends. We hiked, cooked chicken, roasted marshmallows, drank, and had a great time. Agnes and I slept in one tent, and James and Lisa in the other. We went to sleep.

Agnes fell asleep in what seemed like seconds. However, she tossed and turned like mad, making it hard for me to fall asleep. When we had shared a bed before, she usually didn't flail that much. It was probably just the sleeping bag, the circumstances, take your pick.

I must have eventually fallen asleep, because I woke up to her shaking me. It was still dark out. I asked her in so many words what was wrong.

"Did you just come in here?" she asked.

I replied, "No. I came in here with you. Is everything okay?"

She replied, "I just heard you come in. And I heard you and Lisa, doing it. Don't you lie to me."

I rolled over and said, "You dreamed it. I didn't do anything with Lisa, and I wouldn't. Go back to sleep."

Agnes punched me in the shoulder, then repeatedly in the head. "Ow!" I cried, "Cut it out! I didn't do anything with Lisa!"

She landed another punch on my face. I grabbed at her hands in the dark, which was difficult, but when I did, she head-butted me in the face.

I let her hands go and I pushed her away from me. She said, "I can't believe you'd do that!"

I said, "Because I didn't. Stop hitting me."

She slapped at me. I dug myself as deep into my sleeping bag as I could go, ducked my head into it, and resolved to endure anything else she did until she grew tired of it.

She didn't hit me again, I heard her cry a bit, and the next thing I knew, it was morning. She was asleep when I woke, and I went outside to start on breakfast. James and Lisa soon joined me, and after a bit, I climbed back into the tent to wake Agnes for breakfast. She shoved me away and rolled over, so James, Lisa and I had breakfast without her. I tried to rouse her again when the three of us decided to go for a hike, and she wouldn't come out. So the three of us hiked without her.

When we came back, she was cooking. I asked her if she was okay, and she glared at Lisa, then said that she wanted to go home. We had planned on staying two nights, and no matter how much James, Lisa, and I tried to convince her that nothing happened between Lisa and I the night before, Agnes didn't believe a word of it. She accused Lisa and I of lying to her and James of covering up for us. Agnes kept repeating, "I know what I heard. I know what I heard."

She was bringing the whole trip down, and I would've driven her home and let James and Lisa stay the extra night, but we had all come out in James's car. I conferred with James and Lisa about what to do. Lisa and I seemed fine with heading home early, but James refused. He said that we shouldn't let Agnes's delusions ruin the trip. I agreed with him in theory, but Agnes was my girlfriend, and I wanted her to feel better. It didn't help that every time I tried, she rebuffed me with, "I know what I heard."

So the rest of the day was tense, dinner was tense, and the small amount of hanging out we did afterward was tense. Agnes went right to sleep again. I found it easier to fall asleep than the prior night, and I hoped that she'd just sleep off the crazy.

She woke me again early in the morning. It was dark out. She hummed loudly and said, "I'm in a great mood because I just did it with James! Now we're even!"

I said, "Sounds good. Good night."

She shook me and said, "I know you're not okay with it, but it's true. Revenge is bitter, isn't it?"

I did my very best to ignore her, and she babbled on about God-knows-what for a while, and somehow or other, I made it back to sleep.

The next morning, I packed us up as quickly as possible, James and Lisa laughed when I told them about what Agnes has said to me, and we drove away. James, Lisa and I talked the entire way down, and Agnes, aside from humming loudly to herself and looking out the window, didn't contribute anything too important. When we dropped her off at her house, she grabbed her stuff and slammed her car door shut without a word.

We never spoke again.


  1. Does any couple ever get along on a camping trip? Why do couples still go on these? It's like fresh air and trees bring out the crazy in some people.

    On that note, it sounds like Agnes actually does have some real mental issues. That or she's just really committed to the crazy act.

    1. My husband and I went camping for our honeymoon. We're still married so I guess we're evidence that some couples do.

    2. I wonder how much drinking she did, and/or if something there triggered a bad memory or whatever.

      I also wonder if maybe she was on anti-psychotic meds, and forgot to pack them. But, I think you might have to be off them for weeks to have any effects?

  2. The first time my wife met my family was on a Memorial day camping trip. We had been dating around 6 months at the time. My dad had a seasonal campsite where he left his RV all summer. We showed up and I had planned to stay in the RV. But my dad had put sleeping bags in his wood trailer (old truck bed with topper) and said we had to sleep in there. He was joking of course, but my wife didn't know and climbed in. It was parked uphill of the campfire with a few blocks of wood behind the tires. I feared it would roll down the hill over the fire and cook me while I slept.

    The next year for our annual Memorial day camping trip, we brought our own tent. This time I had a bit much to drink and fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow. My wife taking her contacts out and expecting to get some action, she was so pissed to find me sleeping she refused to get under the covers. Well the overnight temperatures fell below freezing, but she was too stubborn to crawl under. I woke up at some point and pulled her close, I later learned she only allowed it since she thought she was going to die.

    Camping trips provide good stories if the relationship can survive them.

    1. Death before snuggles!! Your wife sounds too stubborn for her own good.

    2. I agree. Real moron, that one.

  3. Some bear has a great Penthouse Forums story.

    It's always nice to read about times when the crazy came out way later than the first date. Makes me feel less gullible on some that slipped into LTRs before I knew.

  4. I love these assault-and-battery stories when they are written about women. It's apparently no big deal to get punched and head-butted in the face repeatedly. Nope, just "resolve to endure anything else until she grew tired of it."

    Next time, take charge and let her know that hitting you is NOT OK. I certainly think remaining in a situation where someone is getting assaulted repeatedly is not a smart decision. I would have slept in the car if I had to. Sheesh...

    1. Exactly! Just scream "That's my purse! I don't know you!", then haul off and kick her in the groin. That'll get her attention!

  5. If theres one thing i've learned from years of marriage, there is no dealing with a woman when she's being stubborn. Sometimes you have to just walk away, and sometimes you have to hold her down.

    1. With duct tape and a sadistic gleam in your eye....I can do that.

    2. Sounds a little rapey Don, not gonna lie. Not that it's a bad thing at all! I mean, I like holding women against their will as much as the next guy, but that's usually something that should stay private.

    3. Rape jokes are so not funny. I know the level of commentary here is not much higher than YouTube's, but still--I'm always shocked by the douchebags here. It's a shame JMG allows it, but I guess he's more interested in being a cool dudebro than in doing the right thing.

    4. Freedom of speech is actually constitutionally protected, regardless of how ignorant it might be. So if anyone here is a "cool dudebro," it would be that thing under bulletproof glass in the National Archives.

    5. That has to be one of the most idiotic responses I've ever heard. You truly are a moron. And a bad writer, to boot.

      So, if someone were to use a word like ni**er or joke about lynching black people, you'd be just fine with that, right? And if someone were to joke about assassinating the president, you'd be fine with that, too--right? That's FREE SPEECH!!!--so you'd be willing to let those horrible words remain on your blog, right?

      You're an idiot. Making jokes about rape is never funny. But I guess you douchebags want to keep your 'man cards' and prove that you're Real Men by denigrating women. Meanwhile, you're probably all living at home, sitting in your mom's basement, and probably haven't had dates in the last eon.

      Re "free speech": "...in this country, with our reflexive reverence for a policy of "free speech," as if speech exists in a void, we're more worried about "censorship," because a minor restriction on a privileged person's unfettered right to engage in hate speech is considered a more burdensome encroachment on freedom than the right of people at whom hate speech is directed to live a life free of rhetorical terror."

      That's from a noted political writer. I realize that the level of her writing may be too difficult for you, but if you use a dictionary (as well as activate your brain), you might learn something.

      And I'm sure you'll be happy to know that I will not be reading your blog anymore. The comments are just too stupid and crass, and the misogyny is rampant. Funny how you value cretins like Howie Feltersnatch [hur hur hur--his name is so clever!], The Architect, and SaggyGrandmama over making this a good space for women, too. What a cool bro you are. Maybe someday you'll grow out of your 13-year-old mentality.

  6. A little late to this party, JMG, but here goes. Freedom of speech protects speech from *the government*. It does not free you from the burden of deciding what kind of comments you will tolerate here in this virtual space under your direct control. If this isn't clear to you, just check the first clause of the content policy posted at the bottom of this (and every abadcaseofthedates.com) webpage, which I reproduce here for your convenience:

    A Bad Case of the Dates reserves the right to publish or not publish any submitted content at any time..."


  7. Oh hey! I read a little further and found this too:

    "We also reserve the right to delete any comments at any time and for any reason."

    Rape jokes in comments? No hiding behind the Constitution, plz.

  8. indym:

    Joking about injuring the president or yelling "fire" in a movie theater are not constitutionally protected. Deleting a non-illegal comment because it makes you uncomfortable is a slippery slope. Deleting a comment because it's illegal is a different matter. Making your argument personal (i.e, "[you're] a bad writer") doesn't really help validate your argument, although I appreciate all input, however groundless it may be. And most of the content submitted to the site (by a small margin) happens to be from women.


    I like your nickname. I'd delete a comment if it broke the law (libel, yelling "fire" in the A Bad Case of the Dates movie theater, etc.). I apologize if my content policy bothers you. Just because I or you or anyone doesn't like a comment posted on the site doesn't mean that I will remove it simply because it bothers someone. Some comments bother me, but I'm not going to delete them just because of that. Rather than complain to me about what others say, why not instead attempt to educate those whose comments seem to bother you so much? Likely a better use of your time (as well as indym), but it's up to you.

    Both of you:
    If you don't like the site's comments then don't read the comments. If you don't like the site's content, then stop visiting the site. I appreciate your input.

  9. JGM: Your content policy bothers me, but I get that it's yours to decide -- in fact, that was kinda my point. And I *was* attempting to educate one whose comment bothered me: that would be you, ignorantly citing the Constitution as a reason not to moderate comments. It appears your true objection is that you view any moderation (not counting spam, natch) as a slippery slope. As facile* as I find that notion, at least it has the virtue of not being founded on a misunderstanding of freedom of speech.

    *Briefly: the slope is exactly as slippery as you choose to make it. To a first approximation, mods get the shittiest commenting community they tolerate.

  10. JMG: Sorry for mixing up your initials in the previous comment. Also want to add, I have a tendency to focus on the negative that I need to consciously fight. So, I do enjoy the stories and I thank you for providing the venue in which to collect them.

  11. Hairless:

    This is a site where I assume that commenters will have different points of view. I want to encourage that, but in doing so, offense is inevitable. A guiding philosophy of a site like this might be Evelyn Hall's "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." Offense, when it isn't anything more than sticks and stones, isn't really mine to censor, but as it is my site, the decision, when one needs to be made, is ultimately mine, and I accept responsibility for that.

    Thanks for the input, and for being a fan of the site. Opinions like yours, even when I disagree with them, are part of what I like about putting the whole thing together. If you have any further concerns in the future, then don't be shy. Much appreciated.

  12. JMG: I wondered if that quote would come up. I too will defend the rights of people to say things I disapprove of -- in their own living rooms, on their own radio and TV programs, their own blogs, and in the "town square". I will strongly defend your *right* to permit whatever comments you want as a matter of government policy, while at the same time trying to convince you personally that there is a wider social benefit in not permitting certain kinds of comments. In my view, this stance contains no contradiction.

    And now, as to why I keep harping on this. When it comes to rape jokes, "offense" as such is not really the point. This post, Meet the Predators, is really too long to ask anyone to read sight unseen, so I will distill it down as much as possible:

    "The rapists won’t just tell us that they are rapists, right?

    That’s what I [Thomas Macaulay Millar] would have though. Turns out I thought wrong. If a survey asks men, for example, if they ever “had sexual intercourse with somone, even though they did not want to, because they were too intoxicated (on alcohol or drugs) to resist your sexual advances,” some of them will say yes, as long as the questions don’t use the “R” word...The rapists who are out there are mostly using intoxication, and mostly attacking victims they know. ...The vast majority of the offenses are being committed by a relatively small group of men, somewhere between 4% and 8% of the population, who do it again … and again … and again. ...

    As long as the R word doesn’t get attached, rapists do self-report. The guy who says he sees a woman too drunk to know where she is as an opportunity is not joking. He’s telling you how he sees it. The guy who says, “bros before hos”, is asking you to make a pact.

    ...if we are going to put a dent in the prevalence of rape, we need to change the environment that the rapist operates in. Choose not to be part of a rape-supportive environment. Rape jokes are not jokes. Woman-hating jokes are not jokes. These guys are telling you what they think. When you laugh along to get their approval, you give them yours. You tell them that the social license to operate is in force... You’re telling them that they’re at low risk."

    I'm not saying you're laughing along. I *am* saying that one less space -- even just one! -- refusing to accept such behavior would be a social improvement.

    1. Why? So that potential rapists don't self-report and give advance warning?

      Anyway, the whole premise is silly. I know that I sometimes make tasteless jokes that do not actually reflect my beliefs, and I'm sure that others do as well.


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