The Smartest Decisions I Ever Made

This is a story of a couple of teen-agers falling in love, starting an M/f relationship, playing with a strait jacket, and not going too far. Do you remember what it was like when you were young?

I wonder how many ways there are for finding out that your girlfriend is into bondage. For me, it was her choice of a Halloween costume.

It all started when I was working at my part-time after-school job. I was an auto mechanic, already a pretty good one if I do say so myself although I was only 17 years old. That is what I thought I would be doing for the rest of my life.

One afternoon in September, the shop boss asked me if I could diagnose and do something about a noise in a customer’s car. “She says it’s not really a squeak. More like a squoink. Maybe you can take the car out for a test drive.” I sure couldn’t figure out much about the problem from that kind of description.

Then I saw the customer and my heart did a left flip. I don’t know if the shop boss was teasing me, or if he really didn’t know who she was; it was Cathy Muirless. She was a junior in high school, just like me. We went to the same school, but we traveled in entirely different channels. Cathy took college-prep courses, was a cheerleader, and was part of the “in crowd”. I took vocational training courses, worked after school, and was a motorhead. Cathy’s father owned the Muirless Motors chain of auto dealerships, including the one where I worked. My dad had deserted Mom, and she was bringing me up on a secretary’s salary. Cathy would probably go to college at an Ivy League school, or someplace else fancy. I wasn’t expecting to go at all.

I knew who Cathy was and what she looked like, of course. What student wouldn’t know that much about a cheerleader? I had had more than one fond fantasy about her. But I thought that actually meeting with her and talking with her was about as probable as meeting Angelina Jolie or some other movie star.

I probably wouldn’t have gotten anywhere if I had deliberately tried to put the make on her. Gorgeous blondes have to become expert at fending off advances from guys. But under the circumstances, I had to do my best professional-mechanic act, and nobody had used that approach with her before. I suggested a test drive, and she accepted. We were on the road together for at least half an hour, chatting and listening for that “squoink”. I diagnosed the sound as coming from the right front suspension, perhaps a failing shock absorber.

Why are first conversations with a girl you are falling in love with different from any others? We talked about movies, about the high school football game the previous Friday, about parents, about the food in the school cafeteria, and it was all wonderful. I could have spoken with any other girl about the same things, and it would have been ordinary. By the time we got back to the shop, I had two appointments with her: one for her to bring the car in for a detailed inspection of the right front suspension, and one for a date on the following Friday night.

The date was ordinary, dinner at a fast-food place and then a movie. But ordinary things were special when she was around.

Even unpleasant things became acceptable. I had never been very enthusiastic about homework, particularly math homework. I could do math if I could see any point to it, but I rarely could. Cathy began to drop around my house after school on days when I wasn’t working, and we began to do homework together. She had to study my math book right along with me to figure out what I was doing in that class, since she had always taken college-prep math courses. But she worked at it, and she made me work at it, and I got the first A I ever received in a math quiz two weeks later. The math teacher checked my paper pretty closely, thinking I might have cheated, but my mistakes were different from everybody else’s on that quiz. He called me in for an explanation. I told him about Cathy, and he congratulated me on my quiz grade and on my excellent taste in girlfriends.

A big Halloween dance has long been a tradition at our school. There is a costume shop in town that sells and rents fancy outfits to kids with money, and the shop owners must make a big chunk of their annual profit from that dance. I had never gone to the dance before, because I couldn’t afford one of those fancy outfits. I thought that I would probably be embarrassed. That didn’t stop Cathy. She more-or-less assumed that we would be going.

She understood about tight budgets better than I would have expected her to. Her dad gave her no big presents and no money beyond what she thought of as a limited allowance. She had had to save up and buy her car out of that, and she was worried about being able to pay for the suspension repair. Maybe she had learned some things that most rich kids don’t know.

Two weeks before the Halloween dance, we went shopping for costumes. I wouldn’t have thought of the Salvation Army store as the place for costume buying if Cathy hadn’t taken me there. When I wondered what kinds of costumes we could find there, she just said “Let’s look around and be inspired.”

And inspiration struck. She found a pale-blue uniform jacket that might have been from the Air Force, and some men’s white shirts, and she said “I’ve got it. You will go as a mental hospital security guard, and I will go as a crazy woman in a strait jacket. I know of a video on YouTube that tells how to make a strait jacket from a couple of white shirts, and these shirts here will be excellent for the purpose. They are made from nice sturdy fabric. You can afford the jacket, can’t you?” She wasn’t about to take away all my pride by financing our entire relationship. I could easily afford the jacket at Salvation Army prices, and I had enough left over to buy advance tickets to the dance.

Cathy proved to be an excellent seamstress. She took some small scraps of fabric, and made “Hospital Security” patches using the embroidery settings on her fancy sewing machine. She stitched the patches onto the left front and onto the shoulders of my newly-acquired uniform jacket. She put some gold-colored souvenir pins on the shoulder straps, and the pins looked like rank badges if you didn’t get close enough to read the fine print “2004 State Fair” lettering. I really looked official when I tried that jacket on.

She invited me to come over the next Saturday and help her convert two shirts and a handful of second-hand belts into a strait jacket. She had told me how to find the YouTube video, and of course I watched it before I went to her house. Cathy didn’t follow the video exactly. She made some important changes, and I quickly realized why. Her changes made the strait jacket stronger. It was home-made, but it was definitely real. When she was buckled in, she would have no chance to escape.

I wouldn’t have thought that I could be turned on by helping with a sewing project. Cathy put the half-made jacket on and posed as if she were restrained. My job was to pin her into the jacket with safety pins, and then mark the locations for the belts and for some of the fabric seams with dressmaker’s chalk. I had to use the chalk one thin layer of fabric away from her lovely body. And of course I imagined what she would look like in that jacket just one week later, securely under my control.

In between my work schedule and her cheerleading practices, I didn’t see much of Cathy over the next week. I had to do my extra-hard studying on my own. Every time I thought about goofing off, I remembered Cathy. What had I done and what was I doing to deserve a girl like her? So I kept studying, and I got another A on a math quiz.

Then came the night of the dance. My ten-year-old Camaro wouldn’t be the fanciest car there, but it would be one of the cleanest, and it would look and run as if an auto mechanic owned it and took great care of it, which of course was true. I wasn’t in the least ashamed of driving that car into the fancy neighborhood where Cathy lived.

She wore a simple white T-shirt and blue jeans, and when she greeted me at the door, she was carrying the strait jacket over one arm. She handed it to me, and I got my first thrill of the evening. I got to put that strait jacket on her and watch her smile.

Then I had my first panic attack of the evening. Mr. Muirless walked into the front hall. He was Cathy’s father, and the owner of the dealership where I worked. He looked her over, and asked her “How do you get out of that thing?”

She gave him an embarrassed grin and answered “Ask for help?”

Mr. Muirless looked at me, and then back at her, and then back at me. For a long moment I thought that he was going to kill the whole thing right there. And then he said “Come with me, young man. I need to have a talk with you. Cathy, stay here.” Of course she didn’t have much choice about that. She couldn’t go outside or through any closed doors in the house, because she couldn’t turn the doorknobs.

Mr. Muirless led me into his office and gave me The Lecture. It was just about what I should have expected. I thought that I was doing a good job of pretending to be interested. I was surprised by just how much I remembered later on, and how much it affected my actions then.

One interest that Cathy and I have in common is detective and police stories. We have both picked up a lot of information about police procedures from reading books and watching movies. Using that knowledge, I walked Cathy carefully down to my car with one hand on her elbow in case she stumbled. I put her into the passenger seat of my car with one hand on her head, to keep her from bumping it. I locked her securely into the passenger seat with the seat belt; she couldn’t release its buckle while wearing her strait jacket. And we were off.

The drive went routinely until we reached the corner of Main and Freeman streets and stopped for the light. Moments later we heard a high-performance engine revving up. Big Mick was alongside us, challenging me to a drag race.

I revved my engine back at him. I had tuned that 350 Chevy until it ran perfectly. Big Mick just had his dad buy him a BMW. I thought that it would be an interesting contest.

Then I looked again at the beautiful girl in the strait jacket by my side, and I thought it over. When the light turned green, I put my foot to the floor for about one second, and then I lifted all the way and coasted. Big Mick roared ahead, up over Freeman Hill and right into a police speed trap.

Cathy and I went over the top of Freeman Hill about twenty seconds after Big Mick. I saw all the flashing red and blue lights from the cop cars, and Mick’s BMW already pulled over. And then I saw a cop waving me to the side of the road also.

He was at my door in a few moments. “Licence and registration, please.” I pulled my wallet out and reached across to get the registration out of the glove compartment. The cop noticed Cathy strapped in and helpless.

His attitude changed. He stepped back and said “Out of the car!”

I answered “First, I’d better – “

“Out of the car, NOW!”

“Okay, but – “


I obviously wasn’t going to get a word in edgewise with this cop. I sighed, and I reached for the door handle. And I found that I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t abandon Cathy to her fate under these conditions.

So with the cop’s tirade still pouring into my eardrums, I put both hands on the steering wheel, stared out the windshield of my car, and froze in position. The cop kept shouting for a few seconds longer, but I obviously wasn’t going to respond. He eventually quit yelling and pulled his cop radio from a holster on his left hip. I figured that he was calling for backup.

I had read all those crime stories and watched many episodes of “Cops” on TV. I understood this cop’s problem. He couldn’t drag me out of the car, because the locked car door was in the way. If he approached me near enough to open that door, he would open himself to stabbing or shooting from whatever weapons I might have concealed. He needed backup to resolve the situation.

Cathy said “I’m scared.”

I said “I am too, but I’m stuck as badly as you are now. If I lower my hands from the steering wheel, he could assume that I am going for a gun, and he might shoot me in self defense.”

“You have a gun?”

“I don’t have a gun, but he doesn’t know that. Be quiet now. I have to figure out exactly what I am going to say when a cop finally starts listening to me.”

This didn’t take very long. Within a few minutes I heard the voice of another cop standing just behind my car door. I hadn’t seen him walk up because my eyes were locked so firmly frontward.

He said “Look, why don’t you get out of the car and stand alongside me here. I will have a much easier time persuading my partner to calm down if you get out of the car.”

I recognized the Good Cop – Bad Cop routine. Fortunately a police officer playing Good Cop has to listen sympathetically in order to stay in character. So I said “Okay. But first I have to explain why I didn’t follow his orders right away.”

“So what’s your explanation?” He was perfectly willing to listen to me confess to any crimes I might have committed before he had to read me my Miranda rights.

“I have three interlocking reasons. The first of them is the girl by my side. We were heading for the Halloween dance at the high school, and that strait jacket is her costume. This security-guard outfit is mine.

“She made the jacket herself, but it is very real. She can’t get it off. All the time she was making it, she knew that she wouldn’t be able to escape, and that she would be wearing it on a date with me. But she wasn’t worried because she trusts me not to harm her. Not you, not your partner, not anyone else in the whole world. She trusts me. I couldn’t step out of the car and leave her unprotected because of that trust.

“The second reason is her father. She is Cathy Muirless, and her dad owns the Muirless Motors dealerships. He gave me a lecture when I picked her up a few minutes ago, about how he expected me to behave and about the trust he was placing in me to keep his little girl safe. I couldn’t betray his trust in me either.

“The third reason is me. If I were a gorilla or a caveman or something, I would be going at you and your partner with teeth and claws, and paying no attention to being outnumbered or to your guns. You are threatening my woman. My primitive instincts are screaming at me to throw my life away to defend my woman. All of my blood is full of fight-or-flight hormones. I see that you are wearing a wedding ring. Wouldn’t you be reacting the same way if a gang of teen-agers looking like me were threatening your woman? I’d bet that with your hormone load, you would be able to beat a whole gang of us.

“Of course I am a civilized homo sapiens. You are police, and you have guns and the law on your side. So I have to follow your orders. But first there are some things that I must do.

“I am going to take my right hand off of this steering wheel, and reach slowly for Cathy’s seat belt buckle.” I started to do what I said I was doing at that point. “I will release that buckle.

“Cathy, turn away from me toward your car door.

“I am going to release all of the buckles down the back of this thing, one-handed. Then Cathy will be able to shrug it off.

“I am going to take my left hand off of the steering wheel and use it to hand you my licence and registration. Your partner asked for them but never accepted them.

“And now I am going to follow orders and get out of the car.”

Bad Cop went over to the other side of the car and asked Cathy to “Please get out of the car, ma’am.” I had won that much courtesy from the cops, at any rate. Then Good Cop called in my licence and registration on his hand-held radio, and he interviewed me while Bad Cop interviewed Cathy.

After the interviews, the cops told us to wait on opposite sides of the car while they talked with each other. They must have wanted to make sure our stories checked. Then I got a pleasant surprise. Good Cop called me over to Cathy’s side of the car and said “I’d like to see how your strait jacket works. Put it back on her, please.”

“If she’s agreeable. Cathy, may I put this strait jacket back on you?”

“Yes, Tony, you can. In fact, I’d like that.” So once again I had the thrill of strapping Cathy into her strait jacket and watching her smile.

Good Cop returned my licence and registration and gave me one final speech about driving safely and not drag racing (when I hadn’t even been speeding). I put Cathy back into the passenger seat, and we were free to go.

Once were were clear of the cops, Cathy turned to me and said “Tony – “ in a tone of voice which any guy would love to hear from his girl.

But I was having a hard enough time concentrating on my driving already. I said “Fifth Street coming up, isn’t there a stop sign for us there? Yes, there it is behind that tree limb. Let’s make it a gentle stop. Look left, look right . . . “ Cathy took the hint and shut up.

We pulled into the high school lot and parked. Cathy finally got to say “Tony, you were wonderful!”

I smiled at her and said just “Thanks!” in reply. What more could I have said? Then I added “Are you sure you don’t want me to take that strait jacket off?”

“Heck no! It feels like you are hugging me full-time when I wear it. I’ve never felt safer in my entire life. I’m a little surprised that the cop had you put it back on me, though.”

“I can think of three reasons. He is a cop and might be professionally interested in restraints. He probably told his sergeant that he was watching for some sign of reluctance on your part, or of sadism on mine, and if he’d seen anything he would have sent you home in a police car. But I think the real reason was, he’s a guy, and he likes to see pretty girls strapped down.

“Anyway, let’s go inside and dance. I need to burn off some of those fight-or-flight hormones that I told the cop about.”

Mr. Bomroy, our Vice Principal, was by the door checking out students as they arrived. He gave the strait jacket a beady-eyed stare, but he didn’t say anything and he let us in. I was introduced to some of Cathy’s friends, members of the “in crowd”, in terms which made me out to be a great hero who outfaced two cops.

Then we got out onto the dance floor. I am an adequate dancer, but Cathy was superb. Pretty soon some of the other girls were imitating her moves. I understand that they still do. If you go to one of the dances at my old high school and see a girl holding her arms tight across her chest and moving only her hips and her head, then she is doing the dance move called the “strait jacket” .

Between dances I fed Cathy snack food and helped her drink Coke with a straw. She did have to go to the rest room once; her friend Sophie took her and used the small room at the back side of the gym, which has only one toilet. Cathy later told me that Sophie left the strait jacket on during this procedure.

We left rather suddenly before the end. I turned to Cathy, went into character as a hospital guard, and used an irritating tone of voice to say “Miss Muirless, you know the hospital rules. It’s time to go back to your hospital room and be strapped to the bed for the night.“ She wanted to keep talking with some of her friends, but as her guard I could drag her out and interrupt all of her objections, not letting her get a word in edgewise. “Now now, Miss Muirless, we have to be good and follow the hospital rules, and we know when it’s time to say good-by and go beddie-bye,” and so forth. I got envious looks from some of the other guys as I manhandled the beautiful helpless Cathy Muirless out the door.

The beautiful helpless Cathy Muirless was much less impressed with me, but she stayed in character as a patient who had to take whatever a guard wanted to dish out. Of course she didn’t have that much choice, strapped in as she was. And she accepted my reason once I put her into the car and had a chance to explain. Mr. Bomroy might not have let me take her away from adult supervision while she was strapped into a strait jacket. I had seen him leave the door and head to the bathroom. I didn’t know if it was for a quick call of nature or a careful inspection to make sure that none of the guys were drinking booze in the bathroom stalls. So I wanted to get Cathy out of there as quickly as possible.

Fortunately both of our costumes included our jackets, so we didn’t have to stop at the coat room and pick them up. We didn’t learn until Monday that we had won a trophy for Best Original Costumes. Cathy’s friend Sophie accepted it for us.

I took Cathy straight home. She couldn’t – and probably wouldn’t – have objected if I had taken her to a lover’s lane and parked, but that would have felt like a betrayal of the trust that Mr Muirless had in me.

The night was unusually warm for late October, so we went around the back of Cathy’s house, on the patio by the pool, and we just sat on a bench in a little sheltered nook out of the wind and watched the moon, enjoying each other’s company and kissing occasionally. My arm was around her, and of course her arms were still in the strait jacket.

Her curfew was midnight. At just about that hour, Mr. Muirless broke up our evening by switching on the patio floodlights. I undid the strait jacket buckles and held the door to the house for Cathy. I kissed her one more time, a goodnight kiss, and I drove home. Cathy was still wearing the jacket when I left.

A week later I was back at Cathy’s house for a conventional dinner-and-a-movie date. Mr. Muirless walked into the front hall again, just like the previous week. And once again he said “Come with me, young man. I need to have a talk with you. Cathy, stay here.” Mr. Muirless led me into his office, but the topic was very different this time. He said “How would you like to go to college?”

I was more than surprised, I was flabbergasted. “I’d have to switch courses, from vocational to college prep. And then of course I don’t have the money.”

“Well, I do. Young man, you remind me very much of myself at your age. I have spoken to your shop manager about you. He says that you are a good worker and a good mechanic, with a strong need to do a job right. I got a phone call from the cops last Saturday, checking out your story and making certain that I really didn’t object to the way you took Cathy to that dance. And the cop who pulled you over spoke highly of you too. He thought that you were an unusually mature teen-ager.

“Many of the boys that Cathy has dated think that they are something special because their dad or their grandfather made some money. I would much rather she stayed with you, because your self-respect is based on your own abilities. But I don’t want her stuck with somebody without a college education and no clear path forward in life. So I will finance college for you, if you want to go. Think of it as the Treating-Cathy-Right Scholarship.

“Of course you do have to keep treating my little girl right. She has fallen for you like a ton of bricks, you know. You could smash her heart to little pieces if you said good-bye.”

So that is how I came to be here at our local community college, taking the English and math courses that I need to get into State U. And that is why Cathy Muirless, the daughter of one of the wealthiest men in town, is going to community college instead of to some fancy Ivy League school. I made the smartest decisions of my life the evening of the Halloween dance my junior year in high school.

Cathy and I have had sex since that night. We have been very careful, and she hasn’t gotten pregnant. She was wearing the strait jacket again the first time we did it. We’ve used rope and some other stuff too.

We haven’t told her father about that, but I think that he has probably guessed. He is a pretty sharp guy.

Appendix. Cathy’s Modifications to the Threadbangers Design for a Strait Jacket.

These instructions tell only how to do the modifications. To understand them, you should Google “Threadbangers Strait Jacket” and watch the video first.

The video instructions are given in imperative voice. Imperative will also be used for these modifications.

Follow the video for the first two minutes exactly. Then cut the body ends of the sleeves from the smaller shirt off square. Unlike the video, do not cut the small-shirt sleeves any shorter than that.

Cut swatches about 4 x 10 inches from the body of the small shirt. Hem them, and sew these swatches onto the small-shirt sleeves so that the back of each sleeve will have about an eight-inch extension at the body end.

Cut the cuffs from the sleeves of the larger shirt, and hem the ends. Unlike the video, do not cut the large-shirt sleeves any shorter than that.

Follow the next 15 seconds of the video about aligning and matching sleeves. Then pin and sew the sleeves from the two shirts together in a fashion similar to the video, but in two places: the outer end of the large-shirt sleeve, and the body end of the small-shirt sleeve. Sew the swatches that you added to the small-shirt sleeves lightly to the front of the large shirt, which will be the back of the strait jacket. Make sure that there are no wrinkles.

Sew the ends of the strait jacket sleeves closed as shown at 2:30 of the video.

Cut the entire jacket in half vertically up the front. Hem both sides, overlap them by about two inches, and sew them together again using multiple rows of stitching.

Purpose of this modification: This narrows the front and reduces the size of the neck hole. It thereby improves the fit, assuming that you started with large and XL men’s shirts, and the tighter fit makes it more difficult for a girl to squirm out of the jacket. And of course it makes her look nicer. The double-layer seam provides a more solid anchor point for the forearm-securing belt that will be sewn onto the front.

Follow the video instructions about cutting and placing belts on the back, but don’t put a belt at waist height. To ensure best placement, put the partly-complete jacket on and have your boyfriend do the chalk marking. Make sure that the top two belts are long enough and placed high enough to be stitched through the flaps that you sewed onto the small-shirt sleeves. You may have to put those two belts close together.

Purpose of the other modifications above: When a captive struggles in a strait jacket, the most highly stressed area extends from the elbows across the top of the back. With these modifications, all of this highly-stressed area will be made from double layers of fabric or double belts.

While trying the jacket on, wear a belt on top of it around your waist. Have your boyfriend adjust the jacket for a good fit and mark where the belt falls.

Measure four inches away from the opening at the back of the jacket, both ways, along the marked route of the waist belt. Put wide buttonholes vertically at these locations.

Cut a three-inch-wide strip of fabric from the remnants of the small shirt. Sew this around the inside of the large shirt/strait jacket along the marked waist from wide buttonhole, around the front of the jacket, to the other wide buttonhole. Put in double seams at top and bottom of the fabric strip, and be sure to allow enough space between these seams to slide a belt through the gap between strip and jacket.

Purpose of this modification: It is now possible to slip a belt through one of those buttonholes, around the wearer’s waist, and out through the other new buttonhole. When buckled, a strong non-stretching leather belt will hold the strait jacket in position and prevent the wearer from pulling it up over her head. So there is no need for a crotch strap, which isn’t included in the website design anyway.

Follow the instructions beginning at 3:35 of the website video for attaching belts to the sleeves and the front.

Use the collars from both shirts to make side loops for the strait jacket. Cut the ends of the collars off square, and seam or re-seam as needed. For hints on placement and use, see the videos “Victoria sj” at 1:10 and 3:15, and “Shannon sj” at 1:46. For exact placement, try the jacket on again and have your boyfriend mark the spots. Reinforce the body of the strait jacket at these spots, making them double-layer, by adding a patch of fabric on the inside.

Purpose of this modification: to better secure the arms into position.

Add one more belt, as a crotch strap, even though it is not needed for security. Use a belt that stretches, made from knit elastic instead of leather. Then when it is properly adjusted, it will provide a steady, gentle, but insistent pressure no matter how the wearer moves her body.

Purpose of this modification: Do I have to explain everything?