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How I met your father

When people ask us where we met, we have a skeletal version of our story we can tell, without flinching. We met through a mutual friend. We were friends for many years, and then we finally realized we were in love with each other after I stopped dating losers. After my now-husband came back from a long trip to Costa Rica, we knew. It was love the whole time. This is all true. The only thing we leave out about how we met is where.

My husband and I met in a “lingerie studio,” better known as a “jack shack.” Sometimes you can see them from the highway, with names like “Dollhouse” and “Sugar Shack.” A place where a man can masturbate in a private room on a leather couch, while a girl undresses in front of him. When we met, I was a lingerie “model” and he was the shack’s owner. A place in north Austin, Texas, right where 290 meets I-35. Under the overpass, tucked away next to a mediocre Mexican restaurant and Thundercloud Subs.

We still exchange looks whenever we drive by, on our way to a potluck or a kid’s birthday party. We are careful not to say too much so we don’t pique our 5-year-old daughter’s curiosity, which is vast.

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