Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Think Indian When You Kiss

Yes, the kiss—that glorious symbol of amorous and erotic love—originated in India. In fact, the first recorded kiss is found in our ancient Sanskrit scriptures, dating around 1500 BC.

Birds do it, bees do it… even educated fleas do it (and mind you, you and I do it too). Of course, before your overactive mind starts playing erotic tricks on you, let me bring it back on track and tell you that Let’s do it… Let’s fall in love (from where I have borrowed the opening line) is a legendary love song penned by Cole Porter in the 1920s, which became a forever-and-ever love anthem, celebrating the glorious power of amorous and erotic love. If you can look beyond the double entendre of the lyrics (for example, the cock and the doodle), with its subtle and not-so-subtle sexual euphemism, the song deals with the sublime experience of falling in love.

That is the basic premise of this month’s column, but instead of beating around the bush with all the hullabaloo of falling in love, we will redirect all our energies to a singular act of congress—a lover’s kiss. (Note: I know I could have used any of the other hundreds of words/slang terms that also mean “sex”, but I so wanted to use the word “congress”. Let’s change the discourse on intercourse, shall we? And as with everything else in this country, we too begin our “Chai minus Charcha” with congress.)

To the uninitiated, a kiss may just seem like a kiss—two pairs of lips coming together to touch or exchange salivary juices. Or then again, to use a more scientific definition as proposed by Dr Henry Gibbons (1800s), “a kiss is the anatomical juxtaposition of two orbicularis oris muscles in a state of contraction”. (There…try using that as a pick-up line! Go ahead, I dare you!) Of course, as we can gather from his definition, he probably abstained from any juicy exchanges, choosing to keep his prudishly puckered pout tightly closed. This one, clearly, was a “No Entry”.

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