Actually, my first kiss happened right after my First Communion. Wait, I have a photo of me from that First Communion, so you can see what a little stud I was.
There you are, ladies. It's kind of washed out, and I apologize for that. But if you can, look at me, all decked out in my little red First Communion suit, clutching the Good Book in my right hand. Pretty sexy number, don't you think? Was it any wonder that the First Communion babes in my graduating class found me totally irresistible?
Well, one girl. Her name was Kelly, and she lived a few miles away from me, in a farmhouse. Even though I can't remember ever hanging out with her before, for some reason, my parents thought it perfectly acceptable that to celebrate my big day, I would want to spend time in the company of someone I barely knew. Someone of the fairer sex. They wanted me to spend time with a...lady friend.
Can you say, "Boom chica wa wa"?
She had red rusty hair and lots of freckles. And I don't remember anyone being at her house that day, just her. We played outside her huge front lawn. At around two, she asked me whether I wanted a bologna sandwich.
I had never eaten a sandwich anywhere besides home before, and the thought filled me with revulsion. "No, that's okay," I said, not really wanting to sample food from another house. What if it had maggots?
"Oh, come on!" she said, like Eve tempting Adam with the apple. Remember, this was right after First Communion, after all. I was chock full of Biblical analogies. "It'll be good."
"I-I-I don't know if I'm going to like it," I stammered.
"Oh, you'll like it," she said, older and wiser than me by six months, and learned in the way of sandwich making. "I'll make it any way you like." Then she paused and licked her lips. "Mayo or mustard?"
"Be right back."
Five minutes later, she was back, with limp bologna sandwiches on two plates.
I stared down at my plate, at the unappetizing mess before me, and wanted to die. There was only one slice of bologna on the sandwich, along with one slice of cheese. And she had used wheat bread, not white! I lifted up a slice of bread. Oh, egad. She had smeared the entire sandwich with mayonaise. There was practically more mayo than meat.
Bravely, I lifted the sandwich up to my mouth and took a bite. It was more hideous than I ever could have imagined. Why had I been stupid enough to even attempt to eat food anywhere but from my mom or Nana?
I put the sandwich down. Five minutes passed. "You only took one bite," she said, disappointed, after finishing off her plate.
"I'm not hungry."
"Okay. Want to go upstairs and play a game?"
A game? Oh, I liked games. That would make me feel a lot better! "Sure!"
"Follow me." Obediently, I trudged behind her. We entered her shabby rural home, depositing our plates onto a table in the kitchen, then made our way up a long stairway, to her room.
Her place was a mess, of course. Dolls and clothes everywhere. Bureaus with drawers hanging open. Two beds in the room, one stripped of bedsheets. A big poster of David Cassidy (probably from Tiger Beat) hung over the one that actually had sheets.
"What's the game?" I asked.
"You're going to kiss me," she commanded. I tell you, this girl was quite bossy for a ten-year-old, thinking back on it. Probably grew up to be a dominatrix. But she said it with a smile on her face, and the freckles on her nose were cute, in the glow of the sun shining through the windows. But still...
"Kiss you?" I shook my head. "Oh, I don't think so."
"Kiss me. I'm going to open up this closet..." She pointed to a closet by her bed. "We're going to go in it I'm going to close the door you're going to kiss me for five seconds."
"You are!" She grinned, and I could see a slice of bologna sticking out of her teeth. "Why, are you chicken?"
No, but you're bologna. I shook my head, wishing I was anywhere but this room. "No. I'm not chicken." Of course not. Me?
She walked over past her bed and pushed the sliding closet door open. The darkness inside beckoned, dark and uninviting. "Let's go."
Reluctantly, I followed her into the closet. It was cramped and covered with shoes and clothes, both on and off the rack. Toys were everywhere. We could barely find room to stand. She reached past me and closed the closet door behind me, so that we were completely in darkness. I felt her body, moving closer to mine.
Then, her head, moving closer to mine. "Are you ready?" she asked.
"Sure." I lowered my head and took the plunge.
You know how first kisses are supposed to be all hearts and flowers, all eye opening? Tom Sawyer kissing Becky Thatcher? Violins play and the earth stands still? The touch of the lips from the fairer sex wakens within you a sweet flower, one that only grows and eventually blossoms as the years pass?
All I could think of was...Fritos corn chips.
Seriously! The inside of that girl's mouth tasted exactly like Frito's corn chips. And used, chewed Frito's too. It had probably been the last thing she had been eating, although I don't remember seeing any on her plate. She hadn't put any on my plate! So why did her mouth taste like Frito's? This was all I could think about. Did she brush her teeth at all that day? Did she taste like stale Frito's because her breath was just stinky and...
I tell you, those were the longest five seconds of my life. Marie Antoinette facing the guillotine didn't have it so bad. Standing there in that cramped closet, trying not to vomit, as I pressed my lips against those of a girl who reeked of Frito's. I closed my eyes and held my breath, trying bravely to endure the torture, counting down in my head, all the while.
"Okay!" I pushed my way out of the closet, gasping for breath. The sunlight never looked so sweet. "Well, that was fun. Fun. A fun, fun game."
She looked over at me and squinted her eyes. A wicked smile played across her face. "Wanna play one that's even more fun? Now we're gonna go back in the closet and kiss for ten seconds. With our clothes off."
That was it! I was out of there. Forget it. "Oh, no, I don't think so," I said, and started to head out of the room and down the stairs. Kelly followed after me, asking me to come back, to get back in the closet with her, but I had my mind made up. I was out of there.
I don't recall how I got home. I actually may have walked all the way. Even if it was a long walk, it didn't matter, anything was worth getting away from that house of pain. Of dark tiny closets, filled with girls with loose lips that smelled of corn chips.
Anyway, I didn't have another kiss for many years after that. And I don't think I spoke to Kelly, ever again. Can you blame her for being angry with me?
Since then, I have learned the pleasures of kissing, so don't worry, the experience didn't scar me for life or anything. And, I even like corn chips. I still won't kiss anyone after eating some, though, so perhaps it did leave a little scar.
Anyway, there's my story. Adam had been tempted by Eve, but the apple had turned into corn chips, and the Tree of Knowledge had withered right there, right in front of our eyes. I stayed in Eden a few years after that, but Eve had been banished. I lived alone in that garden, or at least, my parents house, embracing a life devoid of kisses from icky girls.
Kind of like my life today. Well, seasons come and seasons go. This just wasn't the season for me.