People who equate truth with fact are missing the point.

Sloppy Firsts

His name was Jack, and I shared my first kiss with him.

Except shared isn’t quite the right word. I was fourteen years old and desperate for a real kissing experience. I hated to be the only one among my friends who had not yet been awkwardly groped in a dark room by a pimple-faced, greasy boy.

We were at a dance, me and a hundred or so of my closest friends, and when Jack led me toward a small room off to the side of the party room, I followed willingly. He stood with his feet about three feet apart to minimize our height difference, opened his mouth wide, and started some kind of spitting-and-sucking routine that didn’t seem anything like kissing as I had imagined it.

In the ensuing months, Jack made out with most of my girlfriends and eventually, we started calling him The RVC, short for the Rainbow Vacuum Cleaner. Do you remember the 1980s ads for those carpet cleaners? The went into great detail about how the machine shot water into the carpet, then sucked it all back up. Kissing Jack was sort of like presenting the lower half of your face to a Rainbow Vacuum Cleaner and letting it have its way with you.

For several years, I thought that was my first real kiss, until I had my first real real kiss, the kind that makes you go all watery on the inside. That kiss happened in the soup aisle at a grocery store, which just goes to show you what an extremely romantic person I am.

The soup-aisle-kissing relationship was long and melodramatic and chaotic, as relationships that get their start in grocery stores are wont to be. It ended when I was 26 and I’d been in relationships my entire adult life, so I thought I’d try my hand at casual dating.

The first guy I went out with took me back to his mother’s house after dinner. He showed me his bedroom where all the model airplanes of his childhood were dangling from the ceiling. He tried to kiss me, but I dodged his face.

The next guy I went out with drove a truck so huge that I couldn’t get into it (and I’m not short), but he refused to pull up to the curb so I could get in. Instead, he got behind me and shoved on my ass until I went sprawling across the bench seat. Kissing him was lovely, in spite of the giant truck. That’s probably because I didn’t kiss the truck but instead kissed the man. Also because I convinced him to keep a little footstool in the back of the truck so we could avoid the ass-shoving-and-subsequent-sprawling episode the next time.

Why did I kiss a man who insisted on shoving me in the ass? I can only assume that I was a) very lonely or b) feeling very badly about myself. Probably both.

After a few unremarkable dates, there was the guy who took me to Harrigan’s. We were on our way to his car when a panhandler approached us and asked for some money and my date yelled at him. I was so horrified I gave the panhandler a five dollar bill, which caused my date to drive me home in silence and dump me off at the curb in front of my house. Nobody tried to kiss anyone that time.

Then I had the Macaroni Grill-athon. When I went out with a new guy, he would almost ask me where I lived. “Over near Winrock Mall,” I always said, and nine times out of ten he would say, “Oh, there’s a Macaroni Grill over there! How about we meet there at seven?” This was how I had three first dates at the same restaurant in one weekend – dinner Friday, lunch Saturday, and dinner Sunday.

I don’t evenΒ like Macaroni Grill.

The first man during the weekend of the Macaroni Grill-athon ordered his meal and, when it arrived, tucked a napkin into his shirt, hunched over, and shoveled his pasta into his mouth as if there were locusts hovering around him, waiting for their opportunity to steal his meal.

The second man that weekend showed up over an hour late because he was waiting in line for gas at the station that had the cheapest prices in the city that day. I was just leaving when he arrived and I stuck around to eat, mostly in the interests of a free meal.

I ended up dating the third man for several months mostly because he was about eleventy-trillion times smarter than my ex-husband, which was a refreshing change. Sadly, he was about as exciting as a bowl of vanilla ice cream (kissing included) and eventually I called it off.

I stopped dating then. Single life was beginning to seem very appealing, so I took a one-year dating hiatus.

Then, one night, I had a dream. I was chasing people around a shopping mall, asking them to hug me. No one would (seriously, would you?), and I ended up standing in front of Dillard’s screaming, “Won’t anybody touch me? Why won’t anyone touch me?!?”

Huh. That’s not good.

The next day, having run through all the hook-ups that my friends had to offer, I signed up for, but just the one week trial. I was too broke to pay for a real membership.

Little did I know that across town, Brian was signing up for a one week trial at, too, although he was not too broke to pay for the real membership; he was just too cheap.

We met at a local coffee shop called Double Rainbow** and I knew right away that we would be something. I didn’t know we’d get married, but I knew we’d have something special.

On our third date, he kissed me for the first time and my guts turned to jelly and my thoughts went to mush, but it was also as comfortable as coming home after a long vacation.

The best love affairs are like coming home, if home involves roller coasters and fireworks. First kisses can be awesome, but 1,000th kisses are great in a different way.

Also? I have never once thought of any kind of household cleaning tools while I was kissing Brian, so that’s a major plus.

I kissed my share of frogs, but I figure they were all worth it (yes, even the RVC) because I ended up with a pretty damn great prince. Even if he’s not very princely and is, in fact, just an ordinary man, he’s my home. I like him even better than roller coasters.

What are your most memorable first kiss experiences?

*His real name is neither Jack nor RVC.

**They changed the name to Flying Star years ago, but I can’t make it change in my mind.

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36 comments to Sloppy Firsts

  • I haD to chuckle at a few of my hundred close friends bit…very typical in your teenage years thinking that everyone you know is a BFF πŸ˜‰
    Love this story and how it ended. I bet those frogs taught you how to be a perfect kisser πŸ˜‰

  • Sarah

    Loved this post!! Made lots of good (and maybe a few not-so-good) memories come back.

    I love that you met Brian on – that’s where I met my husband also!!

  • Hey! I met Himself on!

    Although things were ALMOST called off because he licks his knife.


    If it weren’t for all the OTHER things he’s good at, that one little crack in his impeccable manners might have done us in.

    And of course, he doesn’t do it NOW.

    In public.

    • Hah! Yes, I almost ended it when I saw Brian’s very weird shoe choice.

      Seriously, they were very, very weird shoes.

      I’m glad I decided to forgive him for those shoes.

      And, of course, he doesn’t wear them NOW.

  • Good to know is the source of most blogosphere hook-ups! Also? The beginning of this post almost made me swear off kissing forever.

    Because ick.

    • Yeah, thing is, if that hadn’t been my very first kiss, I’m sure I would have made an excuse to leave the room, but as it was, I didn’t really know better.

      What makes the story more amazing is that my husband is NOT a tech-person. He has a little netbook and uses it to read books on Kindle and to shop. That’s it. He has never been especially interested in the internet at all.

      How weird is THAT?

  • Fun to read about all these places in ABQ, as I have been to them many times. (And I didn’t realize that Double Rainbow became Flying Star. Huh.)

    I have had my fair share of bad kisses, as well, and my first was awful and rather painful (in a teeth gnawing on lips sort of way). And I agree that finding a good partner is like coming home. Mostly in the best sense of the word home (the safety and comfort), but also in terms of having to deal with familiar messes (like dirty socks and dishes and emotional challenges).

    • I guess there’s a company in CA that owns a chain of restaurants called Double Rainbow and they sued OUR Double Rainbow and forced them to change the name. Seems kind of silly considering it’s such a small, local thing, but what do I know?

      Yes, the messes and the maintenance and all the rest are part of home. My marriage is far from perfect, but after such a very bad marriage the first time around, I can see how very good this one is!

  • Great Story….I am all single like and I feel like I live on the Island of Misfit Toys, so your post gives me hope.

    My first kiss was at a middle school dance. Slow dancing with a boy named Robert. I remember exactly how he held me. The song was “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas.

    I remember how it felt when he leaned in close to me. He whispered and then gently pushed my hair behind my ear. He whispered ” I want to kiss you, ok?” and I nodded.

    It was a very tender, lips brushing lightly at first and then he pulled me close and kissed me for real.

    I have NEVER forgotten that kiss. I think I was lucky to have that kind of first kiss.

    In the words of Rhett Butler”…although you need kissing, badly. That’s what’s wrong with you. You should be kissed and often, and by someone who knows how.”

    that is all

    • Oh, your first story is lovely! I love that the boy asked you; what a gentleman. I agree; you were very lucky to have the first kiss that you had.

      That line from Gone With the Wind is perfect. “…and by someone who knows how.” Yup, that’s the way!

  • CDG

    I met Mark through whatever personals and were sharing at the time.

    oh, yes.

    We were both vets. Done with that.

    And my very first kiss was also at fourteen, at a school dance. We were doing the middle-school zombie shuffle when suddenly! tongue halfway down my esophagus! Ack!

  • LOVED this! I remember my first bone melting kiss with a boy, hell, the way he moved, he was a MAN, named Ben. A very good friend who later came with benefits. Oh, happy memories. in SF provided me with self absorbed, self important pricks that were more interested in my wallet than my mind or body. I don’t think I kissed any of those frogs.

    Met my DH on craigslist, a place I once called the gutterslut of online dating. While our first kiss SUCKED (totally my fault or his big schnozz) the first touch: lightening bolts and tingles up and down my spine.

    Thank you for taking me to my happy place. (While I forcibly shove down memories of kissing my own RVC/big brother’s best friend.)

    • Sigh. There are so many icky memories, but most of them are more than worth it because they bring so many lovely memories with them!

      Just don’t tell my husband that his kisses weren’t the only ones I’ve ever enjoyed. He likes to pretend I was a virgin when he met me.

  • my first kiss was actually the kiss by which all kisses were measured for a very long time.

    i’ve always been able to feel that knowing from the very first kiss what someone was going to be to me.

    my first kiss w: m? pure magic. i had never in all my 27 years & gamillion kisses felt that way. & it is EXACTLY like you write…home. just home.

  • the first time Cort kissed me? I knew that was it. he was mine. game over. it was 20 years in the making, so yes…we knew.

  • My first kiss was during a church youth group meeting. I was the president of the youth group, and it was the only chance that I’d have to be with Stef for at least a month, so despite the fact that her father thought I was trying to convert her from Judiasm, we went.

    Because I was president, I was able to extend my influence & somehow we played hide & seek. Stef and I hid together. The kiss was . . . well, it was a first kiss. I’m sure I acted like the RVC, but it was just plain “off.” I mean, it felt like we were trying to properly seal each other’s mouths for mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. We kissed 6 times, each time like that first…thankfully, future kissing ventures were better.

  • The RVC. OMG. I so laughed.
    I honestly can’t even remember my first kiss.
    I’m not sure if it was that unremarkable or whether I am just too damn old!?
    But yes… a lot of frogs. I’ll stick with my prince πŸ˜‰

    • I’m guessing unremarkable. If you had kissed an RVC, I doubt you’d have forgotten!

      Yup, I’m keeping my prince, too, and here’s hoping we never have to deal with another frog ever again!

  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by cathy jones tittle, Adrienne Jones. Adrienne Jones said: First kisses: […]

  • Macaroni Grill a thon, that’s funny!

    My first real kiss felt electric! It was fabulous. I really enjoyed it. The guy was an asshole, but the kiss was great.

  • My first kiss was pretty damned awesome. It was in the feed room in my barn with a neighbor boy who was a year or two older than me. He had moved to our small town from the city and this was by no means HIS first kiss. I thought my pants were going to melt off.

    That first kiss (and pretty much every one thereafter) with the right person for you? I hope that’s what I’m feeling now, because its incredible.

    • Oh, I HOPE that’s what you’re feeling right now. I hope that more than you can know!

      How come I’m not surprised that your first kiss was in a barn? And that your pants almost melted?

  • liz

    Oh, I kind of wish I had exciting first kiss stories, but nothing as interesting of humorous as this.

    That is pretty crazy that you both signed up for for a week!

    My brother met his wife through either Match or eHarmony.

    • My favorite part of that story is this: at that time, Brian was working less than 1/2 a mile from my house. There was a Borders really close, and he often spent his lunch hour in the coffee shop there, reading. I spent time in the same coffee shop several days a week, drinking coffee and studying. But still, we needed to hook us up, even though we’d sat near each other in the same tiny coffee shop dozens of times.

  • RVC!! Snort!! I probably am not going to kiss Josh now for like a week…maybe 2.

  • Oooo. So you’re destined to be with each other, as cliche as that is. Double Rainbow should have been a sign: so magical and so awesome. πŸ™‚

  • Mary Cornelsen

    I love reading your blog! I didn’t have my first kiss until I was 16 and my ‘boyfriend’ (if you can call it that) and I went out to the local park and were star gazing and he sat up and looked at me and asked me “would it be alright if I kissed you right now?” Super cheesy to melted all my insides righ then and there because he was gentlemen enough to ask first. I dont really remember the kiss tho…oh well!

    Hope your doing well!

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