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Swing and A MIss - B. Eller

We grew up together. Her father put on my braces, my father was her basketball coach, and of course, her house was just a few down the road from mine. We parted ways and grew apart when she went to the private middle school, but my friends stayed in touch with her friends. We hadn't seen each other in 5 years, and she'd done a lot of growing up between age eleven and age sixteen. She was beautiful, which wasn't surprising, but, the amount of attention she paid me certainly was.

After a few months of hanging out with her friends, I finally worked up the courage to would hang out with her, and only her. 6 hours, 100 miles of driving, 3 stops for bathroom breaks, and a hundred awkward silences later, her car finally pulled up outside my front door. She looked into my eyes smiled, and turned away a little embarrassed.

"What?" I asked sheepishly.
"Nothing…" she replied with a grin.
I leaned in and she leaned in. My mom interrupted.
"You're supposed to call if you're not going to be home for supper"

Thanks mom. Both mom and girl walked me to the front door. When my mom realized that we'd been together all afternoon, it became apparent we were all pretty embarrassed. My mom said goodbye to my "friend" and rushed upstairs to watch out her bedroom window.

We stood in the doorway for what seemed like an hour, not knowing what to say.
"Bye," she said with a smile that is still burned into my memory.
"Yeah," I said, as I started to close the door. "Bye".
She leaned towards me, and I knew I no longer had a choice in the matter. I closed my eyes, leaned forward and puckered up. I landed on her nose.

After six hours of watching her, learning her features and studying her beautiful face, I somehow managed to find myself completely lost while trying to navigate my mouth towards hers. I suppose that's what you deserve for trying to pilot a first kiss with your eyes closed.

She started laughing, I started blushing, and my little brother started teasing.
"Let's try that again" she said. Thank God someone knew what they were doing.
Our lips connected, my brother grew nauseous, and my mother's heart soared from the upstairs window.
"Goodbye" she said, with that smile again.
"Yeah…" I grinned, "Me too."

When the door finally clicked shut I exhaled out for the first time since that morning. After two nervous months, and six awkward hours, she was finally mine… and she stayed mine,
for three whole weeks.


The fact that I was going to turn 15 without having kissed a girl was greatly troubling to me. Almost more troubling than the fact that I wasn't all that attracted to girls to begin with. But let's not get into that yet.

It was towards the end of the school year – April, maybe – and I found myself involved in my umpteenth community theater production. This one was The Secret Garden, and my role wasn't that of the bed-ridden Colin haunted by his mother's ghost. No, instead I was relegated to the wings, dressed in black and moving furniture on and off the stage. I would later remember this time as my "theater fag years," but at the time there was nothing more dignifying than a Letherman clinging tightly to the waistband of my Dickies.

I worked with Bridget, an older woman about to turn 16. I knew her vaguely from school, and it made me uncomfortable to see my two worlds – White Bear High and my work life at the community theater – come crashing together. At school, I was an overweight, acne-prone wallflower. But in the theater, I was king. Already at 14, I had the longest tenure at the theater of any of the other stagehands, and I eagerly bossed around the temporary help, like Bridget.

But as it turns out, she liked me. I couldn't blame her. I was baby-faced. Adorably round. And wielded the aloofness of a boy who didn't seem to notice girls. Bridget wasn't a knockout, but she was confident and persistent, a magical combination that would leave me helpless against her advances. Like me, she lacked the lean, muscular body of the boys on the cross-country team. She had a kind, round face with a bright smile and a boisterous laugh. She was a bit rough around the edges, but as for acting as a co-star in my performance of denial and self-hatred, she was perfect.

A week after opening night, we began dating. I don't recall the specifics of how the arrangement came to be, but I'm sure it involved an awkward conversation and a healthy dose of confusion on my part. And "dating" wasn't exactly Friday nights at Applebees either. It mostly consisted of hanging out together during intermission, holding hands in the tech booth, and allowing her to poke me incessantly. She was more comfortable with boyish games of slap and tickle than I was.

About three weeks into our torrid affair, we still hadn't kissed. I was running out of excuses, and I felt the moment looming like the long ride up the tallest hill on a roller coaster, except with the feeling that at any moment I'd look down and realize I wasn't buckled in.

After one Saturday night performance, I asked my friend Bill for a ride home. And, as fate would have it, Bridget needed a ride as well. The set up was perfect. She and I cuddled in the back seat of Bill's Taurus, driving with the windows down on one of the few nice evenings of a Minnesota springtime. Admittedly, it was romantic, even for a guy that had spent that very morning finding a new hiding place for his gay porn.

We pulled into my driveway and I scrambled to get out of the car. As I slid out the door muttering goodbyes, I felt Bridget's hand pull me back my collar.

"C'mere chicken shit," she huffed.

And the kiss. Nothing fancy. Just soft lips on chapped lips, and the small expanse of trapped air between two tense mouths.

It happened before I had a chance to feign a cough or a sniffle. It happened before I had a chance to claim onion breath. It happened before I had a chance to sputter, "UNCLE! I'matotalfagandyoushouldknowthatbeforeyoukisslipsthatwilloneday-godwilling-suckhardhotcock." It just happened.

And it wasn't bad. In fact, it was nice. Sweet. A little damp. Somewhat arousing. And not even that confusing.

From the front seat, Bill chimed in: "Either someone's eating peanut butter, or you're kissing."

I smiled, said goodnight, and waddled out of the car in hopes the excitement would drain out of my body before I reached the front door.

A month later, Bridget and I broke up. She cheated on me. I wasn't upset. She was upset that I wasn't upset. I didn't blame her. We never made out. I never attempted to feel her up. It would be almost five years before anyone would get my pants off, and the event would be at the hands of a boy named Mohamed. To Bridget, I would become more exciting after coming out than I was as her boyfriend. Go figure.

Back then, I used to torture myself with mind games. I would set rules in my head, such as, "If I turn on the radio and a chick is singing, I'm straight. If it's a guy, I'm gay." I'd flip on the radio in hopes fate would deliver me from what I dreaded so much. Sometimes it did, but soon, the fate-induced affirmation of my queerness became comforting, and I started feeling invigorated when the powers that be delivered a gay verdict.

About a year ago, Bridget found herself in Boston and asked if she could buy me a beer. After spending several years in Dublin, she married an Irishman. They were now living together in St. Paul.

After our third Guinness and several hours of giggling, she asked me if I remembered that first kiss.

"Yeah, of course."

"So, considering everything, how did it feel?"

"Like nothing I had ever felt."

"Huh," she said. "I guess a kiss is a kiss, then."

Katie's Story, 13-years-old

I grew up like any young girl day dreaming about boys and what it would feel like to be kissed. Studying every romantic film I came across and praying that one day I would have my chance. Low and behold, like a Cinderella story, the moment of truth came as the clock struck midnight on my thirteenth birthday ( Or 9:30 p.m. but go with me, after all I was only in the seventh grade).

I still remember that evening clear as a bell. My parents had come early to pick me up from a Jr. high dance I was attending. The night had been filled with smiles, many "your so lucky" comments, and dancing. Early in the evening I had become glued to a tall, hansom and older boy who I had met, so yes I did feel lucky.

Anxiously, I grew as the night progressed with sweaty palms, a racing heart and the constant breath check. Questions, I had pondered a million times raced through my mind: "Do I move my head? What do I do with my mouth? Do I look cute? Maybe this shirt does not fit right?... AHHHH, maybe he does not even like me."

And then it happened, just like a fairytale. It was a moment of pure bliss, my fears were instantly forgotten. My wish had finally come true, a moment that I had dreamed of for so long. My first kiss was utterly perfect and what better day than a girl's 13th.


First kiss A

I was 12 and sweet little Hugh was a 11, he was... ahhh sigh..... a skater boy, it was about 8:30 at night and we were sitting on his front porch with the lights out on a hot sweaty night in july, we were making chit chat about secret crushes and he admitted that I was his and that he wanted to kiss me, so we kissed, I did not care that he had a mouth full of braces and he did not care that I had not discovered mousse for my hair, His hands started to roam and he put his hand between my legs and made the comment "do you have a dick" I said "no" .... Side note ...I had started my period a few days before and in 1988, god had not giving the intelligence to man to make maxi pads that were thin and with wings...... I told him that I was on my period and he said ok and continued with his roaming hands and we continued to kiss till 9 pm when I had to go home ..........

Fast forward 5 years First Kiss B

I had joined the church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints and I saw Tim at a church dance..... we hung out a little, but I do not think that his parents liked me because I was a convert to the church and the only member in my family.... but you can not help who you like and there was no stoping this crush.... so being the nerd conniseur that I was and Tim being the nerd that he was .... I used the " I need help with my math home work' card and the plan was in motion, we were spending time togather when we could between school and church.... one night after a chruch dance Tim drove me home... knowing that this would keep him out pass his curfew..... and so there we were talking in his car and I finaly told him... ps , by the way... I have a crush on you and really want to kiss you and he said ok... so we got out of the car and continued to talk, then I told him" I am going to kiss you now" and he said "ok" and then it happened, he was taller than me so I was on my tippy toes and it was not the best kiss and I have only 2 words to discribe it .... awkward and misplaced tongue, but WOW, I was high, so we stopped kissing and he gave me a hug and the night ended.... He was going to go to byu right after high school for the summer session before he went on his mission, so the night before he left he came over so I could sign his year book and he could sign my journal..... what amazed me is that he felt the same way that I did but we could not do anything about it because his path was already choosen..... he wrote: thank you for being my first kiss and my first true love... I will think of you often.... we both knew that we would never see each other again.... but that kiss was one that still makes me high to this day, even as I write about it .... I would not pass a sobriety test and should not drive.

fast forward........100 years and many frogs later

I have kissed fools, gay men, woman, married men, married woman and a variety of 20 something boys, and have made out with at least one guy in the elevator at work....some kisses were good , some kisses were bad and some kisses were ..... just to kill time. I am looking forward to my first real kiss as an adult, I am waiting for that one kiss that will surpass Tim's innocence and Hugh's spark, I am waiting for that first kiss that has only been seen on t.v.... Ironicly if you will, the way that Drew Berrymore's first kiss was at the end of her movie... Never been kissed.

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