Below, you’ll find that our valiant Sploggers have brandished their pens to deliver, for your viewing pleasure, the most adorably cringe-worthy first kiss stories we’ve heard in a long while. What we have to glean from these tales is that your first kiss will be awkward. It’ll be short, probably. It won’t be foot-poppin’. But it will be a KISS, and you will emerge from this feat of yung luv triumphant, albeit with a slightly wetter mouth region.
I got my first kiss freshman year, in the most romantic place in the world: a Walmart parking lot. I described it in my diary as follows: “My first reaction was kind of weird. I mean, to be brutally honest, I thoroughly enjoyed the kiss, but is it considered bad form to have to wipe the spit off your mouth when you are done?” Then I scribbled out the last part of that sentence because I was so embarrassed to be complaining about my first kiss! Later kisses were much better and did not require mouth-wiping afterwards.
A word to the wise: it’s okay to be kissless. Your first kiss, like anything else, will happen when it happens. I didn’t get around to mashing faces with another human being until I was the ripe old age of 20. I was at a college party on New Year’s Eve. Enter the boy. He was very tall, and his name was Matthew. We talked for a while, and at some point in the conversation he offered me pie. Like, an entire pie. He had brought it to the party, but no one eaten it. I accepted this proposition at once, with unparalleled zest. Perhaps he thought this was endearing, or pathetic, or maybe the pie was his opening gambit in our courtship. Whatever the reason, he then asked if he could kiss me, and I said yes, and we totally made out in front of a bunch of people to the beat of Britney Spears’ lyrical masterpiece “Work B**ch!” I never saw him again, but I think about him every other time I eat pie.
My first kiss actually happened in high school. Unless you count Truth or Dare, in which case it was in middle school.
Assuming we’re not counting that, though, my first kiss was in high school. I went to a private Jewish high school with around sixty people total, but zero who I had any sort of romantic interaction with. One would have thought I might have gone my entire high school life without kissing anyone. But that was not the case!
Part way through my first year there, we started going on trips with a Jewish youth group to meet up with other chapters. Now there were potential romantic companions from at least four other schools of less than sixty people each! I hung out with one girl all day and then we walked off and kissed and when I came back, some of my classmates were cheering and stuff, much to mine, and likely her embarrassment. All in all, it wasn’t the most romantic moment and would probably make for a pretty bad Disney movie.
I think my first first kiss would have been during a game of Truth or Dare on the swim team bus the summer after 8th grade (which was basically like a mobile makeout unit for everyone on the team between the ages of 12 and 18. Oh my god, we swapped so much spit back there. I can’t believe we didn’t all get mono). I also have to admit that I’m not sure who it was with, because it was a long bus ride and there were, like, eight of us back there — four girls and four guys. And three of the guys were named “Matt.” So statistically, I guess it was probably one of the Matts. And I guess it wasn’t particularly exciting, or I would remember it better.
Anyway, I had my first real (i.e. romantic) kiss shortly after that, with a guy I was actually going out with, and that memory is much clearer: It was summertime and we were kind of crouched together behind my friend’s above-ground pool, and everything smelled like chlorine and cut grass. But what I particularly remember is that he stuck his tongue in my mouth and — this was so weird — it was cold. His tongue was cold. I still don’t know why. I didn’t want to ask.
For reasons even I don’t understand, I tend to tackle romantic milestones with the determination of an explorer desperate to reach the South Pole: it’s a grim, joyless business, but damn it, it’s got to be done. My first kiss is a prime example of where that sort of thinking gets you.
Ryan M. and Ashley N. were the couple of elementary school, and we all regarded their “serious” relationship with reverence. So when they briefly broke up in fifth grade, it was clear that some lucky girl was about to be the beneficiary of Ryan’s romantic experience. For some reason, that girl was me. I never doubted that Ryan and Ashley would get back together; it was simply the natural order of things. But I was determined that as long as I had Ryan, I would get my first kiss “out of the way.” So, sitting on his top bunk, while his mom made us snacks, I suggested that we explore the possibilities of each other’s mouths. Slowly, cautiously, Ryan leaned forward and planted a kiss directly on my chin. MY CHIN. I tried to improve on the experience that night at the movies, but all our friends kept throwing popcorn at us, and two days later, Ryan dumped me to get back with Ashley. So that was my first kiss, but in fairness, I have never been dumped (or kissed on the chin) since then.
I was 17 years old. The girl had the same name as a devastating hurricane that would come years later—in a similar manner, she would flood the coasts of my heart with a strange feeling called “romance.” She was older and experienced in the ways of love. I was smaller than I am now, and far more anxiety-ridden, so as a forewarning: none of this really went well.
We had many opportunities for a first kiss. After our first date, for example, when she waited patiently on her doorstep and I said “See ya later, sport!” Or perhaps after I accompanied her for the entirety of her Christmas shopping, but I didn’t know how chapped lips worked and after hours of licking them, they were a minefield of raggedy lipflesh. Finally, as though by divine intervention, on the night of a Christmas party, a sudden blizzard trapped us together in a friend’s house for the night. We slept next to each other on the floor of the living room. She rolled closer and closer to me, more than seemed possible for a sleeping person, but I wasn’t the judging type. Finally, pinned against the coffee table, she rolled right next to me, our faces closer than ever before. We stayed like that for a while. This would have been a very good time for a first kiss. In fact, most people kiss for the first time well before spending a night together, and if not before, especially during. I was too busy both cherishing the moment and having a panic attack.
The next morning I helped dig out her car for a half hour, and exhausted, ankles locked in snow, she grabbed me by the coat and we finally kissed. It only took two dates, a party, a night together, and manual labor to get there. A week later she left me for my friend.
I met him at my friend’s end-of-year barbeque when I was fifteen. He had snakebites and hair that had been dyed at some point but had since faded. It looked like the mold I grew on a slice of bread for a third-grade science project: dark at the center and spreading out in rings of blue, then green, then bleach blonde. I thought he was the Cutest Guy Ever. We took a walk in the woods together. At one point, he offered to give me a piggyback ride, which was ambitious because I weighed more than him. After struggling to carry me for a few paces, he let me down and turned around. We kissed. Afterward, he told me he was moving to Georgia. I’m pretty sure that was a lie to discourage me from trying to date him, because I saw him in Safeway a couple months later.
I was eighteen. It was the end of my first semester of college, and my then-boyfriend and I had been dating for about two weeks. I had been hinting at him since the night of our first date that I wanted him to kiss me, and it was becoming quite clear that he was either terrible at hints or purposefully ignoring them. In less than eight hours, I was going to get on a train to go home for winter break, where I wouldn’t see him for four weeks, and I was determined not to go home without a kiss.
So finally, I asked him, “Are you ever going to kiss me?” “I’ve never kissed anyone,” he said. Well, neither had I, but that wasn’t going to stop me. So I leaned in and kissed him, and we proceeded to make out for a very pleasant couple of hours (I think we missed all of Die Hard). Now, five years later, we’re married. But the best part? I got to go home and gush with my best friend about it the very next day.
I was 12 and “dating” (instant messaging, holding hands, double-dates) a fellow seventh grader. I can’t remember if we’d talked about it or if someone had told him, but he did know I had never kissed or been kissed, and this knowledge made all of our physical interactions fraught and awkward. About two weeks into our relationship, he invited me and my friend and her boyfriend over to his apartment for the afternoon while his parents would be at work. I was to come over early with the understanding that we would, finally, get this whole first kiss business out of the way.
When I got there, he showed me around before taking me to his bedroom. We sat down on his bed. The air was charged. We were both waiting for it—the kiss—to happen. He broke the silence: touching his finger to the base of my throat, he said, “You have something on your shirt”—then brought his fingers up to grip my chin and leaned in. Meanwhile I, not realizing this had been a pickup line, was trying to get a look at the top of my shirt. He ended up kissing my chin. Ugh. More silence. Finally, I suggested we count to three. We did. We kissed. It wasn’t great. Pretty wet. But it had happened, and that’s what mattered.
Passing the mic to you, Sparklers! Drop your first chin-kiss stories and/or sentiments in the comments. We want to hear.