Kiss me and you will see how important I am.
If somebody asked Sylvia Plath to describe her first kiss, she’d probably write about how her heart brayed I am I am I am.
My heart did not bray.
A small group of us, 11- and 12-year olds, were at a high school football game. Instead of hanging out with our parents or paying attention to the game itself, we huddled beneath the bleachers in the dark. Someone had cigarettes, and in an effort to look cool, I took one. I smoked it, but I don’t think I inhaled. We spritzed ourselves with cucumber melon body spray to mask the smell of cigarette smoke. I imagine our parents were more concerned with our puberty-induced body odor that no amount of cucumbers or melons could diffuse. Bottom line: we stank.
His name is not important. We were going out, whatever the hell that means, because we all know there was no travel involved in this relationship. He was at least two inches shorter than me, but he was really good at sports, so it was okay. I’m not a doctor, but in retrospect I think he was probably struggling with/medicated for ADHD. I found out years later that his dad was an alcoholic and not much of a dad at all.
He was loud and boisterous, and so was I, so it makes sense that our first kiss occurred while hundreds of loud, boisterous football fans stood above us, screaming and cheering and spilling popcorn on our heads.
Our mouths didn’t really meet, as that implies there were lips involved. I remember lots of slobber, a tongue forcing its way into my mouth, sharp teeth. It was unpleasant, to say the least. I pretended I liked it, because that’s what kids do, right? But I didn’t like it at all.
Back at school on Monday morning, it was as if nothing had happened. Stasis in the darkness.
I am participating in a month-long writing challenge during February, so you lucky bastards get to enjoy a daily post until the end of the month!