#18: First Kiss

It’s your second date, and the evening’s winding down. You’ve had fun, and based on the number of times she’s laughed (you’ve been keeping count), she has, too. On the walk back to her door, you pause a moment and look deeply into her eyes. She reciprocates, you gently clasp her hands, pull her close, and go in for your first kiss… the clip-clop of a horse-drawn carriage goes by as the Eiffel Tower lights up in the distance.

Man, that would be awesome if you were smooth, or romantic, or in Paris. Alas, you’re just an American-based dude out on a second date with that girl you met at Trisha’s party. While you two have been hitting it off and you think you’ve earned a couple chuckles, this isn’t the time to go all Maverick on her and power land one right there on the flight deck. Goose is dead and so is your sense of timing, so pull up kid! You’re coming in too hot!

Sure, you’ve heard women are attracted to a romantic guy with a touch of bad boy attitude, but if you just go in there and try to kiss an unsuspecting woman, your roguish assertiveness can appear real rape-y, real quick. Yes, a woman is going to want you to initiate that first foray of intimacy, but she’s going to have to give you a subtle green light first. Maverick may be the finest “loose-cannon” in the sky, but he still has to gain clearance from the tower before he lands.

When the green light flashes, it’s time to make your move. But this doesn’t mean you got the go ahead for a mouth-to-mouth free-for-all. Unless your bold gesture caused her heart to stop beating (relax Romeo, it didn’t), she doesn’t want a standing CPR session, she just wants you to kiss her gently. So ease up on the urgency and try to play it cool. And if more than 20 minutes have gone by since the last time you shaved, be mindful that your face is now covered in 60 grit sandpaper. “Beard Burn” certainly has its place in the steamy throws of passion, but rubbing her face raw in any public setting is ultimately going to leave you both feeling uncomfortable. Oh, and that tongue of yours stays in your mouth PERIOD, until she initiates (or when you hear a funky bass line and the director tells you to set down the pizza).

The first kiss is always hard; that’s why it comes with so much pressure. Just remember that a confident first kiss can transform you into Prince Charming, but an unwarranted attempt will leave you looking like your dad’s single friend who tries to pick up chicks at the bowling alley concession stand. Just be cool, wait for your moment, take it easy, and be cool. And unless you are hanging upside down thanks to a radioactive spider bite, please lay off the fancy stuff. There will be plenty of time for that crap once you’ve proven you’re not a weirdo. Play your cards right kid, and this kiss will be remembered as just the first kiss… not the last.