She looked out the window and I was scared. We had flirted good and well but she doesn’t date co-workers. Here we were in her apartment, the pot smoke thick, the small talk thin.
She was stoned but she knew what she was doing. Come see the view on the porch. Winter in Minneapolis. Balconies aren’t for winter, they’re for summer and trapping boys.
So the question: do I kiss her and how? Every man knows this moment. She did her part and led you somewhere you can make a move, because she’s into you. Or maybe she’s not into you, so why are you on her porch? Because she actually shows guests the view in winter.
What if you kiss her and you weren’t supposed to? Then are you a rapist? Rapists are the worst! Or will it be like a sitcom and you’ll both make an excuse to get out of there and then you’re friends for two seasons and then you elope.
There is no one to tell you what to do and the clues are a joke. You just have to move.
So I moved.
We ran out of conversation and I pushed her against the wall and looked her in the eyes and our lips were together. It probably seemed very romantic and confident because I moved slow. But I moved slow because I was afraid.
She moved with me. She kissed back. Then we were kissing, we worked together on that kiss.
“Fulfilment,” Gustav Klimt
Balconies aren’t for winter and I was already caught, so we moved inside. There was a couch, the floor, some other furniture. I told her in advance that I didn’t want a relationship, because I’m a gentleman and that’s what gentlemen do in the age of liberation. She might have stopped, but I was no longer afraid. The chemistry was proven, she was in it just like I was.
(Fun fact: There are three types of women who don’t date coworkers, and all three of them will date a coworker.)
That time it worked out. Other times I failed. I went for the kiss once in Mexico and she jumped away like I had teeth mites. It’s not the rejection, it’s the uncertainty—the sense that you should know.
Most men hate this moment. I used to hate it. Because no one is going to tell you what to do, and it’s safer just to be be lonely and sad. Lonely is free. No one fails at lonely.
I don’t know if women have this same moment. Actually that’s not true—I know lesbians sometimes do, because I sort of lived with one and he had game. (He later transitioned to being male.) He had way better game than me. People don’t exactly go to bed at night wishing they’ll wake up as a trans boy—most trans boys don’t wish that—but if it came with game like that I would consider the offer.
But woman, man, trans, any human being has these moments. It might not be the kiss. It might be demanding a promotion or some respect. It might be anything.
You want to make a move and you’re scared as hell. You don’t know which choice will rip your heart out and eat it faster. No one can tell you what to do because they’re scared too.
Everybody wants to know how they can adventure without leaving their home town. There are a million ways to adventure and it starts with moments like this. Adventure doesn’t come knocking, the wizard doesn’t put a mark on your door, I’m sorry. It starts when you say it starts.
Here is the good news.
Every single time you move it gets easier.
That’s what I’ve learned. Any given time you make a move you might fail. But every time you make a move, the next move is easier.
Ask for a promotion and it’s easier to be the only one dancing. Whisper “Do you want to fuck?” and it’s easier to ask for a promotion. Sometimes you’ll fail but soon you’ll fail with grace. People dig grace. They come back to the graceful.
(What happened with the Mexican woman? We became friends. She wrote me a really nice note during the holidays last month. I tried to respond in Spanish. She once apologized for being “so rude” that night, which is very Mexicana of her. You don’t have to apologize for not kissing people.)
Good things don’t come to those who wait, good things come to those who tear through stacks of bad things like it’s a box of Cap’n Crunch looking for the prize at the bottom.
Push someone against the wall and kiss them.