I kissed her. Or no, actually, she kissed me – that’s the more truthful way of putting it – and she did it in this way like she really meant it, it being the kiss, of course, and nothing else, because when we finished – I was kind of involved – she had this look on her face like she’d completed or achieved or ended something – our relationship, it turned out – even though it was our first date and our first kiss.

She nodded too, like she’d proved something to herself, or to me: yes, I can kiss, and with tongues. Or to her friends, who’d probably set the whole thing up: she wasn’t frigid – look she’d French-kissed someone all of them thought was kind of sexless and immature – maturity somehow being conflated with being frigid.

A year or so earlier I’d tried and failed with her best friend (Kerry? Kelly? Carly?) when my sister – no doubt worried about my maturity (or frigidity) – had set me up with her at some school disco. I gave her a quick kiss on the lips at the end of some godawful slow dance I was forced into (time to be serious and meaningful after being appropriately ironic during the Macarena), and then spent the next few weeks (months?) ignoring her, probably because I was immature or sexless or frigid or not interested in her, I really can’t remember anymore.

Whatever, we went bowling – me and Julie, not Kerry or Kelly or Carly. We kissed (or, like I said, she kissed me), and then I never went out with her again, because it was really only about that one kiss that she’d probably been thinking about and building up to all afternoon.

I think, though obviously I’ll never know, the whole date was a dare and she was doing it out of pity or because it was her place, as Kerry’s – let’s go for Kerry’s – friend, her inferior friend, the one there to make her look prettier, to kiss people like me, so I wouldn’t think about Kerry, though I didn’t think about her at all. Maybe too it was her way of getting back at me for ignoring her – see, you’ll kiss someone when it’s right in your face, you’re not frigid, you’re just lazy. Something like that anyway.

Not that it matters now. She’s married last I heard – Julie, not Kerry, or Kelly, etc. – kids too, and kissing a man she probably doesn’t spend the whole afternoon thinking about kissing or how to kiss. Which is more than can be said of me.


One thought on “First Kiss

  1. America could use an etiquette of kissing – who, when is appropriate or not, how, tongues or not depending on … something … words to say before and after, notes to send … but that’s all gone, now since we just jump into bed and kissing’s a sideline except with relatives. Movies, after all, are no longer made where the main event is kissing. Sex? Oh yeah, I guess we should kiss first, OK?

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