Parlez-vous Français?

You and yours are caught in loving rapture, tenderly going about what lovers do. Holding hands comes naturally, so does the expression of undying affection and devotion. You both knew the bedroom games would start at one point or the other, whether it takes two days or an entire year, something would definitely have to give, yes?

It would appear that there are some gaps in this narrative, perhaps there is something very important lacking here? Ever wondered why you never see couples in porn flicks doing it? I’m referring to that sensual, engaging and deeply personal thing called a kiss? No, not that peck you gave your child when they left for pre-school in the morning. No. I found myself quite curious on a random commute to work one morning about the so-called The French kiss and its origins.

Owing to this, I set outfrench_kiss_by_hard_2_find to find some information on what could have possibly urged some individual(s) to experiment in such a manner; to make the grand assumption that eating someone’s face might prove to be a worthy and delightful experience. Well, the experiment certainly paid off- and spread far enough- because it has become like second nature for a lot of people.

For the French kiss’s intimate aspects which dictate that a couple has to be physically close and emotionally connected to each other, it is easy to understand why some men reserve kissing for their wives though they may have intercourse with prostitutes. If we argue that intercourse is just as intimate then we risk venturing into another discussion altogether.

My search proved to be evasive, sadly. Instead of finding comprehensive information about who might have launched this rather interesting bonding mechanism, all there was were illustrations that would be, dare I say, be useful for teenagers and other things that I deemed to be quite useless. According to www.wikipedia.org the kiss was given this name because at the beginning of the 20th century the French had a reputation for “more adventurous and passionate sex practices”.

Well, I say the French have bloody well put the entire world in a fix! Not only can this type of kiss be messy and tricky, but a lot of people have been literally ostracised for their lack of, er…ability. Unlike the traditional peck the French kiss demands skill and technique- laughs- and one could be forgiven for assuming that you need formal and institutional learning to do this thing, hey? So the French are quite sneaky and strategic as a matter of fact!

A poll on Facebook revealed that the “first” kiss wasn’t an awkward and messy affair for yours truly only but something a lot of friends experienced as well. Frankly, I would rather forget that moment in my teenage years when the boy I roped in to help me learn that thing everyone had been doing for a while kept to his word.

The experience was possibly worse for him because I assume he had kissed “like that” before and I was just a pathetic geek who caused tooth accidents in his mouth. Yet, it was equally liberating to learn such because once started it something one cannot unlearn.

So, please don’t be intimidated by those who’ve been doing it for donkey years (like me), and by those who aren’t afraid of giving a dose of it in public. They most definitely sucked at it at one point. Then again, some of them probably still suck at it (pun intended). Sigh.

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Drinkers Anonymous

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 Since the festive season is upon us I reckon it will be next to impossible to not mention alcohol every other minute. Let’s just say, for many, relations with alcohol will be strengthened and beefed up.  ‘Tis the season folks!

I mean, everything comes in big sizes during this period: Big spending, late nights, endless get-togethers, and big bellies…go figure! Not only that but those judgemental arbs that often use religion as a clout also increase their religious rhetoric.

Of course people need to exercise caution by being considerate and not behave like booze is going out of stock. However, I have come to realise that there continues to be huge stigma around people who drink alcohol where I come from.

Naturally, I find this problematic because I imbibe the holy water-I am a connoisseur of red wine, nomakanjani!

Given the statistics of murder, rape, teenage pregnancy, road accidents and domestic violence (among others) that have alcohol written all over them, it is not difficult to grasp where the stigma emanates and why to an extent, it is justified.

I am by no means trying to downplay the extent to which alcohol has damaged and ravaged through our society because a lot of the social ills in this country are a result of alcohol and substance abuse. According to Health24.com, “Alcohol consumption is extremely high in South Africa. The MRC reports that there is a liquor outlet for every 190 persons in the country.”

Furthermore, “The overall prevalence of alcohol misuse is likely to be as much as 30% among certain groups and as low as 5% in others and is dependent on factors such as age, gender, socio-economic status and degree of urbanisation, according to the MRC report on substance abuse in South Africa.”* Scary, huh?

What I do find disturbing (and amusing at times) is the quick and negative manner with which people react to alcohol and therefore their inept disability to differentiate between responsible and irresponsible drinking habits. There is one paint brush for anyone who even dares to drink anything that has a higher alcohol level that Panado.

This past weekend had something interesting in store. I decided to grab a glass of wine while watching that awful Kaizer Chiefs and Pirates game when the lady seated next to me and I started discussing the benefits of red wine. It became apparent that her physician had actually prescribed it for her to aid her condition.

So, though I was a little apprehensive about being the only one with a drink in my hand, I began to relax. This, she said, raised some eyebrows after a fellow church member saw the bottle of the stuff in the fridge before presenting a judgemental lecture (what’s new?).

What took the cake though was when another lady suggested that Jesus had not turned water into alcohol. In her exact words, she said that he had turned the water into “non-alcoholic wine”. Say what?’And just short of bursting into laughter, I pointed out that it isn’t wine if it’s not alcoholic-call it whatever, but NOT wine! It’s that simple.

So, you see how some people turn the scriptures around to suit their own agenda? Exercising moderation is clearly a problem in our country and the dawn of the festive season becoming even more of a headache. If we all put in effort into not overdoing things then we would really be complaining about other things. I say, I am a responsible (occasional) drinker and the cabernet sauvignon stays! Happy Holidays Folks!

*http://www.health24.com/Man/Social_addictions/748-767-3254,13028.asp

Ex Lovers Under Siege

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The sticker on the street lamp post reads: “LOST LOVER SPECIALIST: DR MAMA-BRING BACK LOST LOVER IN 2 DAYS”.

I have found myself feeling quite bemused and intrigued by these flyers/stickers that I see every waking day on my commute to and from the office. It’s gotten to the point where I ask myself whether there’s something I’m missing here. These things are everywhere; on every street corner, in the bus shelter, under the bridge and even on overflowing trash cans. Their reach, it seems is limitless.

Gosh! I didn’t know bringing back “lost lovers” was an exercise of such national importance. I honestly had no idea that the level of urgency for bringing back exes was this epic! Clearly the self-proclaimed experts know something I don’t.

It is not rocket science that expertise is gained from attaining skills, knowledge and experience relevant to one’s field. But these folks are just mind-boggling. One can’t help but wonder as to how they obtained these “skills”, but of course the real measure of their expertise can be deduced from the actual number of ‘lost’ lovers that they returned to their only-happy-to-have-them-back-better halves. Chuckles.

I mean, not only can these quacks bring your ex back (regardless of the circumstances under which they left) but they can also give you something to enhance his…er, man parts. Talk about a bonus! If the huge number of flyers is anything to go by then I’m sure this mad scramble for people to pay attention to this service isn’t entirely bourne out of nowhere. Naturally where there is a demand supply follows.

I’ve had my fair share of relationships and yet to this day I still can’t say I’m an expert. If anything, that part of my life is an absolute up-hill battle and most of the time I take four steps forward and three steps back. It’s insane! To add to that I have had emotionally draining moments with one toxic relationship; though I was very much aware of the nature of that relationship I was still adamant to keep the other person in my life. I recall that I would have gone to any length to save that relationship, but going to a lost-lover guru was not on the cards. Gee, now why didn’t I think of that? 😉

How creepy is the thought of forcing someone to stay with you? I think it’s very cruel.  I decided to speak to the experts myself to see if they could get my ex to do a U-turn. To say I was quite anxious and unnerved by the thought of engaging experts in the field of all things unconventional is an understatement of the century. I had no choice but to conduct an eenie-miney-mo session because they have the same name: Dr Mama Ching Pao, Dr Mama Abdul, Dr Mama Luyi Bamba…see what I mean?

Me: “Hi, can I speak to Dr…”

Dr: (A man) “Yes, speaking.”

Me: (Hesitates) “Eh, hi doctor…Can you help me with something?”

Dr: “…yes?”

Me: (whispers) “I want to bring back my lover (cough)”

Dr: “Where are you?”

Me: “Pretoria”

Dr: “You can come to Centurion…?”

Me: “I don’t know it very well”

Dr: (Gives me directions)…when can you come?”

Me: (Excited) Tomorrow! So…doctor, how are you going to help me?”

Dr: “OK. What we will do is, when you come…we will…where is your ex lover? Do you know what he is doing? When did you separate?”

Me: No. We lost contact. Two years ago”

Dr: “when you come here we will call him together. ‘Ask him what he’s doing (in life), where he is and while talking to him I will do something (does not say what). I will get him to apologize to you…”

Me: “Oh? He will apologize to me?”

Dr: “Yes, and then after I do what I will do, he will call you out of the blue and ask (you) to take him back”

Me: “Wow. Doctor…that sounds good, thank you!”

Dr: “OK then, tomorrow when you come we do (sic) everything together.” (Hangs up)

Wow. Now tell me, who needs to get a life and meet new people when you’ve got this? Though we didn’t get to discuss the nitty gritties of the costs involved, I’m sure it would have been quite steep. I reckon Dr Mama (so and so) has carved a niche for himself as have thousands of his colleagues who ply their trade by misleading and conning people. It’s their prerogative.

But whether we are honest beings or not comes from within and there sure is nothing honest about keeping someone against their will.

What I know for sure is that one of life’s greatest tests comes from the end of a relationship. With the time, energy and emotion invested a lot of us struggle to internalize reality and often drag out the inevitable. Yet the greatest lessons can be drawn from accepting and moving on. Let’s face it, being desperate is just plain unattractive and it might just be what drives the other person away. Just saying.