It was 1989, I was 8 years old, in the 3rd grade. I lived on a military base in Winter Harbor, Maine. Every Friday, a van would come and pick up all the kids a (in a legal non predatory way) and take us to Millbridge, the nearest town to see a movie. [INSERT EPIC MINDBLOWING UPDATE: while writing this I googled the theater, which is like googling an image in a dream you had or like that scene in High Fidelity where John Cusack finds his ex listed in the phonebook and screams “She’s an extra terrestrial, a ghost, a myth, not a person in a phone book!”…basically you don’t really expect it to exist outside of your brain because it’s YOURS and it’s the PAST…anyway, an article posted TODAY telling me that the owner died and the theater will be closing after 36 summers. True story: here’s the article.]
So despite my tears I’ll keep typing. There was a boy I liked, but he couldn’t decide between my friend Sarah and I (I eventually fell for her too, oof.) We all compromised and he asked both of us to be his date that night (yes, 3rd grade.) During the movie he had his arms around both of us and I was happy and sad and full of existential angst. On the ride home I started to pull away as the new Aerosmith song “What it Takes” (To Let You Go) played on the radio. It was raining, and I had my head against the window-it was pretty epic; one of those moments that NO ONE IN THE WORLD COULD EVEN UNDERSTAND because YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW because I was the ONLY PERSON TO EVER LOVE ANOTHER PERSON, etc.
So we get back home and as I go to get out at my stop, he takes my hand, pulls me toward him and says “let me french you goodbye” but without waiting for an “ok” from me. Everything went into slo mo and all I could see was his mouth open really wide and coming toward me like Alien to Sigourney Weaver. I closed my eyes and parted my lips for my first kiss:
a tickle on the roof of my mouth
a slick tingle around my lips
what actually happened: his mouth was just on top of my mouth, we kept them wide open, he licked my hard palette and then circled my lips like he was Burt’s Bees. Done. Over.
Suddenly, all that angsty existential darkness lifted as I realized I NEVER wanted him to kiss me again. I looked at Sarah and smiled as I gave up my claim on him and turned my sites toward her. Let’s just say thanks to playing house I learned how to really enjoy kissing, and haven’t stopped since. My fiance and I were featured on the cover of DC’s city paper kissing at the Pride parade because we are both huge Allies, and because we both looked pretty hot. Just saying. I mean but really. When I’m 80 I’ll remember these boobs fondly and be happy they made it onto the internet.
So, kissing pro tips:
1. Don’t force it; move with your partner, compromise your styles if they are different and find your rhythm.
2. As I learned when I was 8, don’t go in with your mouth wide open and don’t try to eat your partner.
3. Remember to swallow once in a while.
4. Date or be engaged or married to someone super hot.
5. KISS THE ONE YOU LOVE EVERY TIME YOU THINK IT. If you’re like me you worry about death a lot. So kiss before sleep, at goodbyes, and every moment in between. Because, death.
6. Don’t think about death.
HAPPY KISSING EVERYONE!!!