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The Lashing of Tongues
By Ghia Vitale
Once upon a time, one human looked at another human and thought, “Wow. I’d love to shove my tongue in that person’s mouth.” Well, that’s how I’ve always imagined how the French kiss came to be. What that reason was, I’ll never know, although I have reason to believe there was sexual intent involved. Well, that’s what the world has me believe.
The first time I ever witnessed a “real” kiss was at a carnival outside of what used to be Sports Plus in Lake Grove, New York. It was the typical bacchanalia with all kinds of food, lights, rides, and drunk people. We were waiting on line (that was much more like an elongated cluster) and surrounded by a group of loud teenagers. In front of us, I saw a blond girl lock eyes and a boy whose style could best be described as Juggalo ghetto. The boy and girl draped their arms over each other’s necks as they mashed their lips together, clumsily intertwined like mating slugs but with a much more fluid, synchronized anti-rhythm.
It was the first time I had witnessed people give each other tongue beyond the borders of a television screen. It was a live public display of affection. I was transfixed. Real people lash tongues to express fondness? If not fondness, at the very least it’s a matter of chemistry, that profound, hypnotic lust that possesses us and devotes all of our faculties to pleasuring the erogenous zone of another person.
How the act became known as French is unclear. Some say that the term is actually a francophobic term to insult their libertine sexuality, unbridled sensuality, and supposed “amorality” in the eyes of other European countries. Others think it’s on par with how the French got associated with our fries. (Deep-fried anything sound like French cuisine to me, but fries actually originated in Belgium.) And, actually, one of the terms the French have for the French kiss is the Florentine kiss.
Kissing specialist Lauren Worthington says that the French kiss has been documented since the 1800’s and its popularity resurged in the 1920’s. Supposedly, when American and British soldiers returned to their homes after fighting in World War I, they brought with them a souvenir from France: a super-sensual kiss that stimulates the entire mouth. After all, the mouth is an erogenous zone. Even animals like to lick each other, too.
Maybe it’s just our way of saying, “You’re so sweet. May I please have a sample?”
#RetroSex #FrenchKiss #Sexuality #PDA #Tongues #Slugs #History #Francophobia #FlorentineKiss #Kissing
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