The pure and unadulterated angst that was my life at fourteen years old was akin to being set on fire in a desert without any hope of an oasis. I yearned to be a grown up. My body yearned for things I had no idea what were, but I knew that women were a major part of it. The only real problem was I was fourteen. Getting laid at fourteen in South Georgia was as easy as getting a jet pack and a flying car. Of course, if I could have gotten a jet pack and a flying car I could have
gotten laid. Maybe.
Okay, fourteen is too young to be having sex but that didn’t keep me from thinking about it. As a matter of fact, other than jet packs and flying cars, I didn’t think about much more than sex. There were some obstacles to this sex thing I sought, and the first was I had the social graces of an anvil dropping out of the bottom of an outhouse during a tornado. I wasn’t just bad at talking to female people I was bad at talking to any people. I was awkward, shy, and my mind seemed to know what I needed to say but my mouth spewed out nonsense and weirdness. There was no hope of this getting better it seemed, and I thought, at age fourteen, I was doomed.
The only girl who seemed remotely interested was Shirley, the sister of a friend of mine. Shirley was fifteen, much older than I, sophisticated, and she could drive a tractor. In South Georgia the things that made a woman sexy were a little different than other places, but I didn’t know that back then. We would all meet up once a week, on Saturday night, at the skating rink, and somehow, the subject of kissing got to being passed around the group we were in, and there was much debate as to who had, and who had not, ever kissed, and who they had kissed.
Since Shirley and I had been passing notes there was this rumor that we were engaged or whatever passed for that at that age, and a couple of her friends began to wonder aloud if she had, or if she would, actually kiss. Seems odd, doesn’t it? So much of the body and sexuality these days have been sensationalized it is hard to believe there was once this much innocence. One of her friends asked me if we had kissed and I told her it wasn’t anyone’s business, and Shirley really liked the idea I had said that and told another friend she would, if I asked. That girl told a friend of mine and the fire was set. This all happened in the middle of the week and I can very starkly remember having to wait until Saturday. Then the horrible realization hit me; I had no idea how to kiss.
There wasn’t any sort of manual, no internet to search, no television programs that had addressed the issue, no YouTube video explaining everything, and honestly, I had never seen a naked woman except in a Playboy magazine. I had no idea what to do at all.
That Saturday night Shirley and I were skating together and I guided her to the back of the rink, where the grownups couldn’t see and the lights were a little less bright. My stomach was full of butterflies, my knees weak, my hormones raging, and before she could say anything or I could ruin it by saying anything, I kissed her, fully, deeply, likely terribly, but wonderfully.
That was decades ago and now Shirley has grandchildren older than we were then. But that was our first, and the last time I asked her if she remembered, over a decade ago, she blushed a deep red and smiled.
Who was your first? How old were you?
Mike writes regularly at his site: The Hickory Head Hermit
Opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those of the management of this site.
38 thoughts on “Friday Firesmith – First Kiss”
I hear you Mike, that first kiss, that “second base,” maybe not the same gal in each case is not something to ever forget. For the record, the first kiss came via Linda in a small field of alfalfa in Missouri when I was maybe in sixth grade. That girl had some womanly insight at an early age. Oh, need I say that the Last Kiss is just as memorable?
So what happened to her, IIstan?
Oh my Mike, I wish I knew. I finished sixth grade in Missouri and then Dad moved us to Minnesota. I got reacquainted with friends from those years via the Internet and the word on Linda was not very good. Still I can’t help but wonder.
Now I will always wonder, too.
I was on the receiving end of my first kiss. In the middle of “Grease”, our first date, I felt her looking at me so I glanced over and she leaned in and kissed me smack on the nose…you see when she leaned in, I thought she was going to tell me something so I leaned in at the same time and our faces collided. Awkward but it really cracked her up and we were successful the second time.
Where is she now, Max?
Age 14, Ashley was her name. We were walking through the park up the street from my house late at night. Wont ever forget her. Beest looking girl I’ve had the pleasure of dating.
No one ever forgets the first kiss, I suspect. So where is Ashley?
Her dad she had never met showed up out of the blue when she turned 18 and her and I were dating at the time. Bought her an a brand new Audi S5. and she moved to Florida. She came back once to pack up her house. We hung out for the last time. We shared our last kiss and I havent seen her since.
HAd a really nice car though. She is now refered to, within my group of friends, as S5. The car had a more profound impact on them than she did.
That is the funniest comment yet, dude.
A little more Linda. As I remember she lived in a very small house in a run down neighborhood.
Although the song speaks of a coffee house, whenever I heard it I would think of those lost years. Sugar Shack by Jimmy Gilmore & The Fireballs
I will never hear that song again and think of it in the same way.
If we knew the outcome, where they are, how they are, the bubble might burst and those memories would fade away. At least in my case it’s best to leave it alone, and only imagine the longer version.
There is wisdom in that, if not satisfaction.
Around 8th grade, a L O N G time ago. Remember like it was yesterday. She lived about a mile away, but that mile was climb/slide down a steep hill, across a creek on some old logs, through the woods, around a large pond, and back up a hill, then a few more minutes run down the street. I knew it well at night, in winter it was a long miserable slog. (I still have occasional dreams about that walk 45 yrs later LOL, even though the woods were replaced a couple decades back with a street full of homes). Small group of friends, her basement, I was soaked and frozen from the walk in the pitch dark and snow, “This Guy’s In Love With You” by Herb Albert on the stereo… My brain scrambled after that and I don’t even remember how I got home.
The tree we carved our initials in still stands. It’s bigger now, and the initials lasted long after that year, but they eventually scarred over and there’s no trace of them now.
Don’t you miss that brain scrambled feeling? I remember the kiss but I don’t remember much that happened afterwards.
A friend of mine kissed a girl and it was his first time and her first time and she passed out from excitement.
LOL!… Yeah, that was some kind of somethin, huh? Truly a ‘once in a lifetime’ event.
That song above, along with “Ferry Cross the Mersey”, smelling Clairol Herbal Essence shampoo, Chapstick, seeing a 65 Corvair…… I can be back there in a second, and sometimes, I don’t wanna come back.
We remained sorta friends thru high school, and then she just disappeared. I look at her HS yearbook pics now, and wonder what the heck I was thinking LOL. Those 13-y.o. raging hormones…outta control. I went on a quick search on Google, FB, etc tonight, and found a couple of her older brothers, but no trace of her even in her brother’s Friends lists.
Wow, that isn’t a good sign at all. Notice that’s kinda rampant in this thread?
Lynn. We were the ships passing in the night, we were an item for about a month. She suddenly left and I never found out where she went and never heard from her again…You know, I’d like to know what happened, why she left, where she went, does she remember me. Not wanting to rekindle an old flame, just curious…
Gary, that sounds like a quest! Gore Google up! Hmmmm, quests are not what they once were.
JoAnne made me kiss her or I wasn’t getting near the refreshment table. I didn’t want to, I was a good boy, but she led me astray with her feminine wiles… and refreshments.
No way does anyone here believe that.
We want Jo’s side of the story.
Let’s see… kiss JoAnne to get to the chips and Pepsi, or die of thirst & starvation… xoBruce did what he had to do to survive to tell the tale.
His name was Randy and I was 16. I was so deathly afraid of my father killing the first boyfriend and hanging him from the tree out yonder, that I never went near a fellow. Until Randy. Even to this day, I will say that he had the nicest kisses of any guy that has ever kissed me. My sister messed that relationship up big time and he disappeared from my life. I’ve always wondered through time how he’s doing but never followed through in checking it out. He was a gentleman and a nice fellow.
You must find him, Bella!
In 1960, had my first kiss with JoAnne at a picnic put on by the company that our Moms worked for. She was a freshman cheerleader at another High School and the prettiest girl that I’d ever seen. The time had gone by to the point that it was getting dark and nobody could see us very well. I was trying to dance with her and get up my nerve when ‘Sixteen Candles’ started playing. Jo and I just looked at each other and the rest was history. Going to different schools and not having a car made it almost impossible to date, and after I went off to college, we lost contact. The last that I heard was that she was married and had two kids.
That sounds like a good start to a rite of passage movie, Richard.
Next on Friday Firesmith, Class Reunions! How we met the gals we never knew.
I have never been to a class reunion, and I never hope to see one!
Maybe I will write a screenplay for the story of my life…NOT. Although there is a chapter about taking Jo to see the movie ‘Psycho”. I had managed to get my arm around her shoulder and I mentally refused to give up my strategic position even after my left arm went completely numb.
Now at my age Richard, the arms going numb are the least of my worries.
I’ve done that too, Richard, way back when. Just that little bit of contact was enough to make the world a happier place.
It was the cupcakes that he really wanted. But what I remember most was Bruce pulling the zipper down on the front of my shirt. We were twelve years old.
LOL!!! Bruce is so busted now.
His name was Phil and he went roller skating because I asked, not because he liked to skate. Our friends on the double date drove slo-oooowly around the block, to give him time to make his move. We were 15 and very innocent. Ahhh… innocent kisses.
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