Five Ride or Die Rules to Summer PDA

Just in case you feel a makeout coming on…


The setting could have very well been painted by Sofia Coppola herself. It was dreamy and ethereal and scored to a B-side of my favorite song by The Strokes. I was sprawled out on the grass in Prospect Park, clad in hand-me-down florals, feeling like a manic pixie dream girl when suddenly, the urge to touch my husband’s left butt cheek overcame my right arm. And why not? The sun was setting, the PBR was setting in, and our favorite band had just started strumming the opening verse of our wedding song.

I looked up at the sky and asked if Nicholas Sparks was authoring my life.

But a page was tragically turned when upon noticing my hand inch closer and closer, my husband shifted his stance so as to disconnect half his butt from my palm. Here I was, leaning in and practically begging for a kiss or at the very least some arm chills and my advances were being rejected. Subtly, yes, but rejected nonetheless.

I was momentarily offended before looking to my left, then right, when I realized that there were at least eight couples who decided that this, too, was the right moment to seize the PDA.

The thing about a public display of affection is that there is this glaring double-standard. When you and your partner-in-crime are rough and tumbling in the grass, it’s sexy. When buzzcut Bob and his blonde babe are grinding and groping to Flo Rida, it’s gross. Similarly, when you lip-lock at sunset, it’s romantic and bohemian. But when Timmy and Sarah Beth interrupt their picnic by the Central Park lake for some kisses and cuddles, it’s like, YEAH, call me in two years when the baby is crying all night and your mortgage payment’s due! 

Perfecting PDA requires your performing that delicate dance between public and private and I will be the first to attest that it is not easy. As a result of this, and as the woman whose significant other’s left butt cheek is averse to her touch, I have taken it upon myself to compile a short list detailing the do’s and don’ts of summer PDA. Because, yeah, I get it, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and you just want to suck face.

1. PDA finds solace in the company of disconnected strangers, not in front of friends.


2. In my experience, shit has gotten weird when hands get involved. Keep those critters in  your pocket and save them for a rainy day.

3. Trap me in a sterile pod and call me Bubble Boy, but the idea of swapping spit amidst bites of turkey tea sandwiches gives me the skivvies. If the tonsil-hockey urge strikes during meal time, be it at a restaurant or picnic, eat and then play, or play and then eat. Just remember that the sunset is going somewhere.


4. Know the difference between a peck versus a balls-to-the-walls make out session. The former shouldn’t last more than five seconds while the latter has been known to stand the test of at least a handful of 7 minute rendezvous in a broom closet heaven. And for Yeezus’ sake, keep your pants on.


Later. Definitely, later.

5. Sorry I’m not sorry that you fell so deep into the abyss of your partner’s blue eyes, the fire hydrant caught your big toe. PDA in motion disrupts the flow of the ocean. Keep it at a stand-still. Your mom may not have been talking about deflowering your tongue but she was right when she said: have fun, be safe.

Oh! And you should know that I grabbed his ass again yesterday. He complied. Success.

Visit Esther’s blog, The Philosophy of Windex here and follow her ass on Instagram here.

Feature image shot by Alfred Eisenstaed for LIFE Magazine, 1945

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  • Jenns10

    Very funny and accurate! #5 was my favorite – pda in motion can be downright awkward

    • Leandra Medine

      and dangerous!

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  • Anita

    you’re so funny!

    xx Anita

  • Amelia Diamond

    I am totally with you that there is something really gross about making out around food in public. As grabbing at the park, though, is fine if it’s OTP. Over the PANTS.

  • Victoria

    The hallway leading to my locker in my highschool is known as the makeout hallway. I get to see a load of pda everyday. Everytime I walk there I just don’t know what to do with myself,, where do i look?!

    • Esther Levy

      stare at them until they become really, really uncomfortable.

      • Victoria

        haha that would be hilarious, a friend of mine did that once and the people making out didn;t even notice

  • Cécile
  • Lol, I don’t mind PDA so much. Life can be so fast and serious that if people want to slow it down and make out for a bit it’s cool with me 😉

  • Haaa! This is so funny. To me, it just gets weird when butts get involved in any way–tapping butts, squeezing butts, the hand-in-each-other’s-back-pockets thing–no. Save the asses for when your asses are back home.

  • Brigid Neary

    Buzzcut Bob sounds kinda cute

  • lavieenliz

    so funny and dead on!

  • sf.mama

    ROFL! I couldn’t stop laughing after you the butt shift. So hilarious.

  • FatFreeFashion

    Haha! Great piece! (Of writing…;) Funny and oh-so true.

  • Lol, this is perfect. Absolutely perfect.

    — Michelle |

  • LOL – your are so funny 🙂

  • Aubrey Green

    I don’t like PDA. What about when you are on a double date and the couple keeps touching and/or kissing, c’mon really!?!

  • AguywhoReadsmanrepeller

    Hilarious, i believe tears for fears said it best (oh so long ago) “The grabbing hands Grab what they can”

  • AnarchyInTheUK

    Nice post Esther…. that first pic is spot on, Been following your posts on MR the last couple Months you have a fresh voice and love to hear more,,, also checked out your blog fucking great…..

  • Sylvia Levy

    really funny! I’m going to try grabbing my husbands left butt check in public-i”ll let you know how that goes…

  • applebenefits

    This is so funny.”shall we shag now or shag later” Haha. like it.secreat

  • LOL hilarious! Couldnt agree more with the double standards of PDA!

  • nes

    did you know that sailor kiss photo was actually sexual assault? The nurse had no idea who he was and he just grabbed her and kissed her because he was drunk. CRAZY RIGHT?

  • mercy

    #1 so sad to be him , LOL
    tas ransel wanita