When is a kiss not a kiss?
Hello and welcome to The English We Speak from BBC Learning English, I’m Neil and with
me is Feifei.
Hello. You seem a bit tired Neil. Late night?
Yeah, I had to go to this old university reunion thing – which was fine – but by the time all
the goodbyes and air kisses were over it was really late.
Air kisses? You were kissing the air?
You know, those kisses people give each other where their lips never actually touch each
other’s? They just make the noise.
Ah yes I know. When you meet up with people you know at a social event and to greet and
say goodbye you pretend to kiss.
That’s it. Usually you touch cheeks on either side and make a kissing noise but the lips never touch. Sometimes the cheeks don’t touch either. And that is an air kiss.
Let’s hear some examples.
I always feel so awkward at parties. I hate all those air kisses and small talk. Urgh, so phoney!
Charles, so wonderful to see you, mwah! Mwah! Charles?! No lips, please. Let’s stick to air
Woman: So, go on, tell me – did you kiss her?
Man: Well, I air-kissed her. Does that count?
Woman: No it does not!
An air kiss. A type of greeting and farewell between friends at social events.
A kiss in which the two people’s lips do not touch!
That’s it – cheek to cheek and a big kissing noise into the air. Mwah! Shall we end with an air
kiss to our audience? After all, they are our friends.
Bye! Mwah, mwah, mwah, mwah.