I was recently researching the topic of "how to kiss good" when I happened to come across a book called The Art of Kissing by Hugh Morris. Such a lofty sounding title for something as simple as pressing lips together, I thought.
Kids know how to kiss. Babies know how to kiss. Old people, young people, short people, tall people, skinny and stout people all know how to kiss. Is there that much to know about how to kiss someone for it to become an art?
Still, I couldn't stop from wondering if this book might reveal a little kissing trick or two. Maybe even something that I could try on the wife? I think her birthday is coming up next month.
Notions of secret kissing exercises for developing super-muscular lips danced in my head. Could this Art of Kissing book reveal to me the secrets of how to achieve kissing greatness? Am I destined for gold at the next Kissing Olympics?
My hopes were mildly put into check when I looked at the date of publication. 1936. Oh yippee. That's over 70 years ago. Kissing back then probably had something to do with powdered wigs and smelling salts. Oh swoon, oh swoon! OK, so maybe history isn't my strong suit.
As it turns out, according to the Art of Kissing learning how to kiss good today is not all that different from what it was like in 1936. That's because the Art of Kissing covers more than just kissing definitions and techniques. Nearly half the topics in the book deal with all the preparation and seduction that leads up to kissing, which is quite difficult to define.
While much of the "how to" kissing information is timeless, there are a few sections that may not be considered politically correct by today's standards. In fact, many people today might be repulsed by the author's view on man-woman relationships.
For example, the author strongly says that in order for proper kissing to occur that the man must be taller than the woman. It is not a mere suggestion, mind you -- it is a hard requirement in order for the man to be dominant over the woman. In fact, the author states that if the roles were reversed and the woman was taller than the man then it would be a disappointing and "ludicrous banality." Very harsh indeed!
Clearly the views in 1936 were more openly biased when it came to the roles of men and women in relationships. Guys needed to be dominant, aggressive, and physically taller for a relationship to work - plain and simple. No room for equality and empowering women here, Dr. Phil! Although I do notice Dr. Phil is actually much taller than his wife...
The other section in the book that could be seen as extremely biased by modern standards is in How To Approach A Girl. This section basically starts off by saying that men should not be so bold as to grab women and kiss them right away. Instead, they could utilize a nifty bit of physical entrapment by using the arm of the sofa to block the girl's getaway and also ignore any initial resistance from the girl.
Today you can get arrested for doing this!
On the other hand, the author does reveal a technique for girls on how NOT to get kissed, among other things.
The author claims that if the girl cries out and scratches the man's face then he should lay off and not try to kiss them.
I guess a nice face scratching would certainly be a good signal that the girl doesn't want a kiss, huh guys?
The other kissing topics in the book I found to be actually quite useful, if not overly melodramatic. Those topics were more practical and discussed kissing techniques and strategies on how to be a good kisser such as the French Soul Kiss (how to French kiss - yup, you use your tongue), the Vacuum Kiss (watch out for the loud "popping sounds") and the Surprise Kiss (how to kiss a girl as she dreams - surprise!)
Overall I think the Art of Kissing was quite informative, especially by putting into context that the "how to kiss good" part a relationship comes at the end of a bigger process of seduction. If you downplay or ignore the advice that deals with too must male testosterone then you should do well by today's kissing standards.