David Sedaris
Contributed by Larisa Brooke
The Ones That Got Away

The chapter is a brief story that describes how the author and his boyfriend Hugh got away from contracting HIV/AIDS. At this stage, Sedaris and his boyfriend have been together for more than three decades. Hugh is a handsome guy not only in his eyes but also according to societal standards. Thus, Sedaris was curious to find out the number of men that his partner previously engaged with before they began dating. Hugh counts the number and arrives at thirty-nine which does not come as a surprise to the author.

Sedaris states his insecurities that Hugh compared Sedaris with each of the men he had ever been with in one way or another. The author reveals that he had to work hard to be with his boyfriend Hugh, at times even begging. It does not surprise the author that his handsome boyfriend has such a high number of past partners, but what amazes is how lucky they were to get away with not contracting HIV.


The author gives the reader a glimpse into his insecurities of not being as handsome as his partner Hugh. His most profound relief, though, is the fact that he and his partner got away with getting infected with HIV at a time when no one knew what it was. Sedaris also informs the reader how much effort he had to put in to convince Hugh to be his boyfriend throughout their thirty year relationship.

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