My first kiss happened on a swing set; my young swain had dirty fingernails and milk on his breath. Okay, so we were eight years old. And to be quite honest, I had thrown myself at him with an impassioned letter done in maroon crayon I left on his front porch. Moments later, I found the letter torn to shreds, its tiny pieces littering the lawn and mirroring the state of my heart. But in spite of what I thought was a clear message, the boy next door planted a kiss on me the very next day as we sat in that double-seater. The day after that, he threw a rock at me. Ah, love. Since then, I have learned the importance of the first kiss, whether the first of your life or the first of a new relationship. (In one of my novels, my hero and heroine have their first smooch while they're cooking, and let's just say they end up tasting more than just the food.) The first kiss can seal the deal or send you running in the opposite direction. One way or another, they're usually pretty memorable. A couple of years ago, I got a message on classmates.com that began: "I used to live next door to you when we were growing up, but you probably don't remember me. . ." You'd be surprised, dude.
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