When I launched this blog in 2007 — with no intention of writing about jam — I googled “Hitchhiking to Heaven” to find out whether anyone else was already using the name. My search didn’t yield much, certainly not anything that concerned me. What I’m saying is that I didn’t find this entry in the Dictionary of Sexual Terms. I swear it wasn’t there.
This blog got its name in the most innocent way. I was rehabilitating an injured shoulder with prescribed exercises, one of which involved grabbing hold of some rubber tubing, extending my arm, and moving it up and down with my thumb pointed upward. (And, yeah, now I see what that looks like.) Stewart said, “You look like you’re hitchhiking to heaven.” Then, we almost simultaneously said, “Hitchhiking to Heaven — that would be a great title for something.”
The title seemed just right for a blog because, in my writing and in my life, I feel that I am constantly fumbling toward a connection with some kind of grace, carried forward by so many unexpected delights and disturbances along the way. You know how it is. From moment to moment, you never do know what kind of circumstances are going to stop and offer you a ride. For me, the ultimate destination — the heaven, if you will — is learning to embrace whatever appears with as much equanimity as possible.
Discovering that the name of my blog is a synonym for male masturbation was a little bit distressing. I am a person who experiences a full-body cringe when I feel I’ve done or said something embarrassing. (I get a lot of exercise that way.) So I briefly wondered whether I should pull down the whole blog and start over with a new name. But I don’t think I will. If someone makes fun of the title, I’ll just tell them everyone makes mistakes sometimes. This one was a real boner.