SparkNotes Blog

Never Been Kissed REDUX: The ELODIE Story

Being NBK never goes out of style—which is why we broke into the SparkLife vault at Gringotts to bust out Elodie’s Never Been Kissed series, a glittering gem originally published in 2011. Though you now know her as the living manifestation of awkwardness, the inventor of such groundbreaking series as If Fictional Characters Could Text, and just generally the most hilarious Splogger ever to grace our blog, back then, Elodie was just a Sparkler with a big dream: to get some mouth-on-mouth action. Did she eventually smash her face against the face of another human being? Did she accidentally get married to someone 8 years her junior? Did her flirting shenanigans go terribly, irreversibly awry? Is she still NBK? Take this glorious journey with us, and FIND OUT.—Eds 

I’m Elodie. I’m seventeen and I’ve never been kissed. Also, I pee when I laugh too hard, I have Hannah Montana on my iPod, and I root for the Detroit Lions. Before I list any more embarrassing tidbits about myself, let’s delve into a pivotal moment my sophomore year, wherein I realized that romance will forever elude me…

There was a boy. He was a freshman, and he was my next-door neighbor. He was cute and really, really smart, and I had this secret romantic idea of what it would be like to date him; we’d have late-night talks on the roof and throw paper airplanes through each other’s adjacent bedroom windows. We had Trigonometry class together (in which I had a heretofore unbroken streak of always having the wrong answer when called on), and we also had a carpool thing going on. One of our dads was always in the front seat, so it wasn’t the ideal time to strike up a budding romance, but we did have a few conversations about trigonometry and waffles, so I figured that was a step in the right direction.

Around this time, I also had a friend who was embroiled in a passionate love affair with her then-boyfriend. They were the kind of couple who used PDA like it was supplying oxygen—in the hallways, at the top of the stairs, outside the chemistry lab, wherever. Well-meaning teachers had to break the happy couple apart on more than one occasion. Now, I’m not saying I viewed this behavior as an example of the perfect relationship—in fact, I was quite fond of throwing chicken nuggets at them mid-smooch—but it did make me realize that I was way behind. The Kissing Train was leaving the station and the conductor was yelling at me to hurry up. I had to get a move on. I needed to get that first kiss out of the way before I became some sort of sexually depraved cat lady.

Of course, I already had a target in mind: my carpool buddy. He was perfect, he was available, and I had reason to believe he had a bit of a crush on me. (Once he told me I was really smart, and as a love-struck sophomore, I took this as a declaration of undying love and secretly proceeded to plan our future together. If you’re interested, we spent a happy life in New York City selling tacos and scamming tourists. ) The problem was that I couldn’t think of a blessed thing to say that would lead to some mouth-to-mouth interaction; with my social skills, I’d probably blurt out, “Please marry me. I’ve already named our kids.”

Finally, I settled on asking him to homecoming. I threw that preconceived guy-asks-the-girl notion right out the window and decided I’d do it one day while we were waiting for his dad to pick us up from school. It was kind of awkward; we were standing there, silently, shuffling our feet and exhaling puffs of air in the cold. He was gazing contemplatively off into the distance; I was having a painful inner struggle. Ask him! I commanded myself. No! Don’t! He might say no!

Instead of saying something witty and brilliant, I lobbed this gem out there: “So why do they call it a butterfly? Butter doesn’t fly.” Then, I laughed. In fact, I snorted. Loudly. At one point I was going to bring up homecoming but instead went on a word vomit-induced tangent about the weather. To cap off the whole disaster, I was then introduced to his lovely girlfriend, who just so happened to be passing by. She was very nice and pretty and seemed like the kind of person who never has anything stuck in her teeth. Mentally, I was imagining what she’d look like if I slammed a cabbage onto her head. I was very mature about the whole thing, clearly.

Needless to say, the whole throwing-paper-planes-through-adjacent-windows scenario didn’t play out. And it wasn’t long before I realized this was a silly thing to lose sleep over. I mean, your first kiss is usually something that just happens, right? You can’t exactly map it out. (Unless, of course, you kidnap a hapless boy and keep him in your shed. But I haven’t considered that, I swear.) I didn’t lose interest in boys—God knows I’ve had more than my fair share of crushes—but I did lose interest in the idea of dating. It just didn’t appeal to me. Whenever someone asked me out, I said no. (And, okay, it’s not like there was a barrage of admirers beating down my door, but there were a few.)

Like my fellow NBK columnists, I’m not interested in getting a kiss just for the sake of getting a kiss. But I am going to broaden my horizons; it’s my senior year, after all. It’s time to quit being shy and just go for it.

This post was originally published here!

Did you read Elodie’s series in 2011, or is this the first time you’ve laid eyeballs on it? Are you NBK?