f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

July 5, 2008

let’s celebrate kissing and chocolate

Filed under: Haiku or Senryu,q.s. quickies — David Giacalone @ 10:43 am

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July 6 is International Kissing Day

. . . . . . . . . . . . July 7 is Chocolate Day

Indian summer
chocolate kisses
on my cheek

………. by Yu Chang – from Upstate Dim Sum (Vol. 2008/1)

We highlighted International Kissing Day in a 2006 post and a 2007 piece, but this time we want to do more to celebrate both that holiday and Chocolate Day, which the National Confectioners Association has set on July 7.

First, for those who — despite it being the three-day Independence Day weekend — insist on serious content from f/k/a. Consider re Kissing:

  • The Supreme Court’s decision in Davis v. Monroe County Board of Education, 526 U.S. 629 (1999) allowed an individual student to sue under Title IX when her school administrators failed to protect a 5th grader from sexual harassment by another student. That led to much discussion among teachers of whether to encourage tattling, and among administrators (and lawyers) about what constitutes harassment. As a Washington Times article put it (“Stealing a kiss has become grand larceny“):

” . . . [I]f the teacher counsels the tattletale she’s overreacting and encourages her to handle the boy herself, well, that might be an expensive mistake, particularly if the child claims that she’s failing in her studies as a result of the boy’s attentions. In fact, the teacher who tells the girl not to make a federal case of it will likely find herself in the middle of a federal case.

Reporter Suzanne Fields further notes: “But narrow definitions of what’s offensive in harassment cases have a way of expanding into broad definitions in sexual politics, whether the behavior of tots, teens or tarts. Let’s not forget the 6-year-old boy in North Carolina who was temporarily suspended from school for kissing a little girl on the cheek. He missed the class ice-cream party, too.” And,

“Reacting to fears of harassment suits, certain college codes of conduct have become ludicrously prescriptive, requiring clear and explicit questions from boy to girl (or vice versa) before either one can initiate an amorous gesture. Stealing a kiss has become grand larceny. Many elementary schools are now writing similar rules.”

It’s been almost a decade since the Davis case. Did school boards over-react? Is it safe for a smitten 5th Grader to kiss a tattletale?

Personal Confession: Back in the first grade (circa 1957), at Holy Family School, in Rochester, New York, I snuck a kiss in the cloak room from cute little Elizabeth Muellner, a curly-headed blonde. Sister Mary Elvira, SSND, did not think it was funny, and I got reprimanded and sent to the principal. Lucky for me, Elizabeth did not turn my felonious crush into a federal case.

  • For a serious sociological study on kiss stealing, see “Perceptions of sexual violations: denying a kiss, stealing a kiss” (Sex Roles: A Journal of Research, April, 1994 by Michael R. Semonsky, Lawrence B. Rosenfeld). According to its abstract: It “Compares the perceptions of 387 male and female undergraduates of a scene involving a minor sexual violation in which 1 participant denies a kiss and the other kisses regardless. Differences in perceptions of offender and denier behavior are discussed with reference to social support for determining sexual behavior.” See if you can guess which gender took the denial of a kiss and the resulting stealing of one more seriously. There are some surprises.

In a less academic mood? YM.com‘s Kissing Trivia Test will help you discover whether you are a novice or expert when it comes to smooching (answers here). We learned, for example that:

1) Scientific studies have proven that kissing can help reduce skin rashes and blemishes.
4) In addition to two tablets of Tylenol, kissing can help alleviate headaches.
5) The average person spends 336 hours kissing in a lifetime. [ Ed. Note: Are you suffering from a Kissing Deficit? This might explain Prof. Yabut’s mood today. It’s never too late to catch up.]
6) Kissing can help prevent plaque build-up.

Kissing Day –
they pause to remove
their dentures

……………. by dagosan [re-written, July 6, 2009]

Denplan, a private UK dental health insurance plan, is credited with creating National Kissing Day, in 1995, making this the 13th annual celebration. Denplan Managing Director, Stephen Gates, said [please, Yanks, no Brit-teeth jokes allowed]:

“We created National Kissing Day as a fun way to raise the profile of dentistry among consumers so that it had a connection with everyday life and not just six-month check-ups.

“While oral healthcare is a serious matter impacting general health, being sombre about it doesn’t necessarily always get the message across – people tend to think ‘that doesn’t apply to me’. National Kissing Day is a great opportunity for people to kiss their loved ones and remember the importance of oral healthcare; we hope everyone will be doing that today.”

To celebrate this year, Denplan had a survey taken in the UK to determine the public’s favorite movie kissing scenes. According to their July 2, 2008, Press Release, “Patrick Swayze voted top big-screen kisser of all time.” Indeed:

  • Britain’s all-time favourite screen kiss has been revealed as Patrick Swayze kissing Demi Moore in the 1990 blockbuster film, Ghost.
  • Second most popular rated kiss was the Disney classic Lady and the Tramp, where pampered pedigree pooch Lady shares a surprise spaghetti kiss with loveable rogue Tramp (36%).
  • In third place was Swayze again, this time with Jennifer Grey in the 1987 blockbuster Dirty Dancing as they kiss in public for the first time (35%).

Swayze was the favorite among females surveyed, with his films ranking 1st and 2nd. Surprising (to me), males also rated Ghost first, but put the cutesy scene from Lady and the Tramp second and Titanic third. Elders liked the Spaghetti Kiss best. (Also see ‘Ghost’ tops best screen kiss poll, Digital Spy, July 5 2008)

Click to see the famous Spaghetti Kiss scene from Lady and the Tramp in a YouTube clip (at about 3:50); and catch a human re-enactment here.

By the Way: According to YM.com, “You’re in the Army Now features the longest on-screen kiss.”

a breeze
from its wagging tail —
the dog gets all her kisses

………. by dagosan

Speaking of animals and kissing, PDSA (UK’s leading veteinary charity), is warning that “Puckering-up to pets poses risk, warns PDSA – National Kissing Day, 6 July.” To wit (and I hope certain lady friends of mine read this):

“[PDSA] is urging pet owners to leave their animals ‘out of the action’ on National Kissing Day next week, due to the risks of spreading diseases between pets and people.”

” . . . . PDSA Senior Veterinary Surgeon, Sean Wensley says: ‘While kissing a pet or being licked on the face might seem like harmless fun, there are in fact lots of bugs and germs that we can catch from getting too close to our pets. Dogs and cats use their tongues to groom themselves, so contact with a pet’s mouth is not a good idea. Putting our face close to theirs can also be quite threatening to some of our pets, and can contribute to them becoming aggressive’.”

Click on page 75 of George Carlin’s Napalm and Silly Putty for his (R-rated) explanation of why dogs might not “have the cleanest mouths of any animal.” It’s an argument Your Editor has long used to discourge human-canine osculation.

dog day heat
the subtle breeze
of a blown kiss

………… by ed markowski – Full Moon Haiku (July ‘05)

Here are a few more quickie pointers for International Kissing Day:

  • With the slogan “Kiss a queer for Christ’s sake,” LGBTs and their supporters “will gather in Brisbane and Sydney on July 19 for simultaneous kiss-in protests against ‘homophobic religions’ and Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Australia.” See “Pope’s queer kiss-off” (June 26, 2008).
  • Using a press release captioned “Kiss with confidence” (19 June 2008), the UK firm Keeping Face is exploiting National Kissing Day by pointing out solutions they offer for various conditions that might make one’s mouth or lips unattractive. Thus, you can go to them for lip-fillers, wrinkle and lip-hair removal, and dental work. I say: Pucker up and give Keeping Face a nice Bronx Cheer.
  • In case you believe in the special magic of location, location, location, USA Today offered a Valentine’s list of “10 great places to steal a kiss — and give one back” (2/14/2006) that should do just fine for Kissing Day, too.

We’re all worn out, and the kissing hasn’t even begun. One final point: Keep in mind, if you’re planning to over-do Chocolate Day, that you can burn off up to 600 calories an hour kissing.

You probably need very little advice on celebrating Chocolate Day. But, if you want some inspiration, you’ll find many ideas at the Candy Addict weblog, in “An excuse to eat chocolate: Chocolate Day, July 7” (July 6, 2007).

Although CandyAddict had no problem believing that “Chocolate is Better than Kissing!” (May 7, 2007), you may be as surprised as Prof. Yabut was yesterday, reading “Kiss and tell: chocolate wins” (The Age.com.au, April 17, 2007):

“Researchers who monitored the heads and hearts of romantically involved couples found they responded more to chocolate melting in their mouths than kissing.”

“. . . The study showed that even the most passionate kisses failed to equal the buzz of chocolate.

” ‘These results really surprised and intrigued us,’ said psychologist David Lewis, who led the study. ‘ While we fully expected chocolate, especially dark chocolate, to increase heart rates due to the fact it contains some highly stimulating substances, both the length of this increase together with the powerful effects it had on the mind were something none of us had anticipated’.”

CandyAddict‘s reaction: “they actually had to do tests to prove this? Seems like common knowledge to me!”

Reprise from our “bocce advocacy” piece (Sept. 16, 2005):

My Grandpa Bart and the other old Italian guys often said “kissa the palino,” when a bocce ball rolled up slowly and nestled right up against the palino (the small ball that is the target; sometimes called a jack). I did not know as a kid, that they were making a translingual pun — the Italian word for kiss is bacio, and the plural is baci. Click here for the very romantic story of the first chocolate kisses — Baci from Perugina/Nestle.

I’ll be celebrating Independence Day, Kissing Day and Chocolate Day this afternoon with my haiku-‘n’-bocce buddies Yu and Anita Chang and John Stevenson. You can find quite a few kiss-related haiku and senryu below, and at our prior posts from 2007 and 2006.

slow train
i lose count of the cars
when the woman blows a kiss

her kiss
on the cool side of tepid …
indian summer

…………………………………………. by ed markowski
“her kiss” – Haiku Harvest (Fall/Winter 2005)

Here are a few that Ed wrote yesterday and overnight, specially for f/k/a and International Kissing Day:

our sugar coated lips
stick for a moment…
cotton candy

cold rain
the line to the kissing booth
lengthens

a long kiss
on the fire escape…
summer wind

after the kiss
a pair of swallows reach
the vanishing point

kissing…
the sound of moths
under her porch light

………………………………………. by ed markowski

saint
valentine’s
day
a white rose and chocolate kisses
from
the
un
believer

. . . by Lee Gurga – Modern Haiku Journal (Volume 39.2, Summer 2008)

late night ice cream
our cat licks
around the spoon

….. by Hilary Tann – from Upstate Dim Sum (Vol. 2008/1)

6 Comments

  1. Where does the end of “Officer & a Gentleman” rank?!

    Comment by Anne — July 5, 2008 @ 12:02 pm

  2. Hey, you’re a better researcher of arcane facts than than I am, Anne. How about checking it out with Denplan to see more of their survey results?

    Comment by David Giacalone — July 5, 2008 @ 12:21 pm

  3. Hi David,

    So, I guess I won’t be sending this one in from our Colorado vacation?

    ice cream cones —
    the hound eats his
    from a spoon

    Happy Deja ku and Happy belated 4th of July!

    Love to Dagosan…

    Karen

    Comment by Karen Cesar — July 5, 2008 @ 3:34 pm

  4. Hi, Karen. Thanks for dropping by. I guess your dog should meet Hilary’s cat — we’ll bring two spoons.

    Comment by David Giacalone — July 5, 2008 @ 9:59 pm

  5. The ever right-to-the-point insight of George “How Much We Miss You Already” Carlin and Ed’s wonderful cotton candy kisses … it’s not often that type of tactility is so perfectly captured in a haiku …

    Thanks!
    Don @ Lilliput

    Comment by Don — July 6, 2008 @ 3:04 pm

  6. Hi, Don. We can always count on George and Ed for getting right to the point artfully.

    Comment by David Giacalone — July 6, 2008 @ 7:51 pm

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