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It’s official: Kissing is not ‘our’ culture, the ‘our’ here being us ‘Indians’. Yeah, we Indians don’t kiss. Oh no siree, we don’t. That’s why all our movies used to have the mandatory scene of two flowers getting closer and closer till their respective petals touched (omg, the thrill, the ecstasy of that moment!). Each time the hero and heroine made faces at each other, did facial exercises, errr… sorry I don’t seem to get it right,  were in the throes of what was supposed to be extremes of passion, the flowers had to step in and do their duty.

This was of course during ‘ancient’ times, my childhood and growing up years. The authorities/elders, the Keepers of Morality in Society (Golly, that sounds like something J.K. Rowling could have used in her books in place of the Death Eaters) thought that they could prevent us from learning about kissing. We grew up and found (too late, much to our sorrow) what kissing was all about and kissed and how, to make up for lost time. Not only that, we also found that they, the parents that is, had children not by immaculate conception as they would have us believe, the liars-by-implication, but by the normal biological way of humans by means of copulation. Shucks! Pure as the driven snow (not that we ever had seen snow), did they say? What a let down.

You don’t believe me? Then listen to this story, a true one at that, as told to me by a friend. This was in the dark ages, late 70s. Students in one of the medical colleges where my friend was also a student were learning the basics of ‘how children are born’. Nope, those days schools didn’t have ANY lessons on this topic, or colleges for that matter. But they could very well not keep such essential matters from those studying to become doctors, could they now?

So there they were, students of medicine, all 17 and 18 year olds, who were getting their introductions to the basics of sex or ‘how children are born’. Many in that class were aghast when they found out ‘how it is done’. In agitation, they asked each other, “Do you mean to say our parents did THAT?” Obviously they had to have, because weren’t they the living proof? But it still sent many of them into a state of shock imagining parents in all those kamasutra-ish poses. Some among the girl students even burst into tears when they realized how “dirty” their parents were, when all along they thought of them as pure lilies, never touching each other in such gross ways, only petal-to-petal as they showed in movies. The film world has a lot to answer to the common people.

Did that make you laugh? Don’t worry. The fun and frolic continues to the twenty first century. As recent as about 5 years back, Death Eaters… sorry, The Keepers of Morality in Society were insistent in spreading the illusion that their children were born by spreading a white sheet on the ground, kneeling on it (No, it is not what you think, such dirty minds you have, I tell you!), and praying. God it seems, did the rest.

Don’t look at me. I don’t know how HE did that, probably dropped the babies on their heads on the hard ground by the look things (Not all of us are such ‘divine’ beings though; some of us were conceived the ordinary way, through union between humans and birthed via the birth canal).

The problem is, the special delivery dropped-on-head-babies are all around wanting to intrude on personal space, brandishing the sword of ‘our culture’ of which they know naught (because when has culture ever been stagnant?). If these Keepers of Morality of Society in the present have their way, we’ll soon be back to the flowers-kiss-but-not-humans era, and that sadly so, will only be the least of our worries, their intrusions into and controlling of personal choices and lives being the worst.

The Kiss of Love event that happened at Kochi today is the first of its kind and gives hope. According to their press release it is “a symbolic gesture to send a strong message to social elements who indulge in moral fascism and moral policing” (Read the full report on their Facebook page here). Don’t miss these telling answers given to trolls of the event.

NaBloPoMo November 2014
©Shail Mohan 2014