Kissing is a nearly-universal custom, but there are some societies where it is either unknown or radically different from the way people kiss in Europe and America. It follows that kissing is largely a learned phenomenon, especially romantic kissing. And there are plenty of new kisses and kissing techniques people could enjoy - if only they knew about them. My personal favourite is the vacuum kiss, in which you suck the air out of your partner's mouth and lungs during the kiss. I like it because it hurts a little and adds a bit of pain to the pleasure of the kiss. And remember, there's always a first kiss with someone new. The way to do it can vary widely, but I'd suggest something gentle, like a peck on the cheek or a lip-kiss. It's very much appreciated if you don't try a French-kiss as a first kiss, as a lot of people says that it's just too much.

People aren't sure what the other sex expects out of a kiss. For example, one girl asked me after a lecture if her tongue was too short. It turns out a lot of people think they have this problem. I asked her to stick out her tongue. It reached down to her chin.

Someone who has never kissed before should just keep in mind what British psychiatrist Adam Phillips said: "Kissing involves some of the pleasures of eating, without nourishment." So don't worry. If you've ever eaten mashed potatoes, you're going to find a French kiss, say, feels like familiar territory. William Cane is the author of "The Art of Kissing", and the forthcoming "Frequently Asked Questions on the Art of Kissing".

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