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Guest Editorials

Battle of the Lippy Parallel

Written by Staff

By Ryan Haymore

There’s an unspoken battle that wages on hushed lips. At times, a kiss can seem like an inevitability of the situation. During those picturesque moments the situation’s pinnacle is met with a rush of the heart, a flush of blood to the face, and an angst-filled urgency in the extremities. That moment seems to behest your bodies to indulge in that intimate moment where lips fall against each other in a screaming union of flesh and carnal lust; yes, that’s how this southerner describes a kiss. However, most kisses are just glorified pecks on the cheek.

A bad kiss is an inescapable plague in the mortal probation of dating and courtship. A bad kiss mostly feels like you are baptizing your lips in the other’s mouth, having Hannibal Lecter attempt to nibble your face off, or having slugs race across your face. However, the lurking beast I’m talking about is a more covert bad kiss between two good kissers. I coin this a Battle of the Lippy Parallel.

The 49th Parallel is the border between North and South Korea. This is where I begin to lace together my southern language of analogy. Let’s say you and the person you’re with are preparing to take the nose dive into each other’s faces and play the Game of Mouths. At this point, your lips approach each other and your puckered pair meets the other. You start the process of arranging noses, lips and chins. This process, which is a little less than a country line dance of the face, precedes but doesn’t yet indicate a good or a bad kiss.

The moment after arranging faces is where the Battle of the Lippy Parallel can occur. Let’s say you’re both good kissers; that is the normal catalyst for the battle. You would naturally think two good kissers can make a magical kiss without much trouble. Well, that is normally the case, but what happens when you both aim for the same lip? The battle breaks out in clear and present saliva! This is the lurking demon in the world of kiss and tell, aka The Battle of the Lippy Parallel.

The lip which you prefer to kiss on is the genesis of your physical game. That lip is where you launch sensuality into the spatial, sexual realm. Thus, the lip you kiss is of utmost importance. But what do you do when you realize you both are aiming for the same lip? What happens then is a battle of lip-laced search and seizure proportion. Your mouths are targeting the same space; your chins are nudging each other out of the way; and your hands are whirling all over the place like a frenzied octopus because nothing knows where to go. The pole position is the lip you both want. Eventually, one will get the one they want; let’s face it, there aren’t that many lips to choose from – and, as a gay man, I’m not discussing any other lips.

Regardless, this is the battle which makes a good kiss a bad kiss between two good kissers. The kiss is either an intimate moment or a bloodbath of deranged tonsil hockey.

The kiss doesn’t have to be spent entirely in this war pitting face against face for space on one lip. Two options arise: one of you concedes and takes the lip less traveled, or you end the kiss in a saliva-soaked disappointment drenching both your chins. Either scenario ends the kiss rather poorly with someone dissatisfied, or both of you parting ways looking like Pavlov’s dog outside a whistle convention.

My solution: If you find yourself in a battle over the lip, then declare a cease fire. Implement a French-style peace treaty (pun very intended). Bring in the tongue. Be careful though; you don’t want to seem overzealous. You’re only initiating the tongue to overwhelm the system. If you overwhelm the situation with tongue, then you won’t have the room, jaw width, or multi-tasking capacity to focus on any particular lip at all.

Believe me, it doesn’t matter whom you’re kissing, nine out of 10 times they’ll reciprocate with tongue or at least enjoy that you did. Thus, a Battle of the Lippy Parallel is quelled and you get to end the kiss with a more positive outlook. After all, it’s our ability to see the world as positive, which separates us from the animals.

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