The Almost First Kiss
The trouble with wearing braces is that you can't kiss well. So, inside the scary house, when she sidled up to me – lips pouting at an almost obscene angle – as I stood panting over the dangling arm that had leapt out from the ceiling, I had to think on my feet to escape the situation. She seemed to have no idea of what she was getting into. All I could do, in the heat of the moment, was to convert the kiss into a bear hug, with a weeping-on-the-shoulder added for emphasis.
She must have been grossed out, because she never went out with me again. Even after I got the braces out and became the star baseball player of the school.
When I attended her wedding twelve years later, I wondered if she still did the lousy pout to get her kisses.