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Wednesday, 24-Oct-06

Eighteen Kisses

There are no PDA's here, did you know? Not the digital kind. I'm talking about Public Displays of Affection. That was invented before Personal Digital Assistants...

Men and women aren't seen anywhere showing affection to each other in public. Just ain't done. No kissing. I hadn't noticed this.

What I did notice the other day was the same young man's face on a lot of billboards advertising various movies. He was in dramatic poses with a sword walking out of a fiery background. There were several others of him posing with handguns. He looked to  be the Indian version of James Bond and Indiana Jones rolled into one. I was told he was quite popular among the young people and is making a lot of movies recently. They're formulaic but they sell lots of tickets.

When I asked about the guns I was told that there is tight gun control here. Citizens aren't allowed weapons. Period. Only the police are armed. This discussion led to a surprising detail about the movies: There's no kissing!

Up until two years ago none of the movie stars actually kissed each other on the big screen. Not the movies made here at least. Not that it's outlawed (to the best of my knowledge) it's just culturally unacceptable. Or was until two years ago. Then there was this particular movie... the stars kissed eighteen times! Everyone who went counted... :-)

The people I was with couldn't remember the name of the movie, just that everyone called it "Eighteen Kisses". That's how everybody remembers it. I mentioned it to our cab driver Deva and he laughed: "Yah, yah!"

By the way, "Yah" and "Okay" always seem to come in pairs here. I've heard lots of people say "yah, yah" or "okay, okay". :-)

The Eighteen Kisses movie broke the ice, or the dam burst (pardon the pun reference to a certain American movie that has gone with the wind.) All movies seem to have kissing now, no problem. No going back to that genteel era of yesteryear where kisses were a mere romantic suggestion and as the stars had stars in their eyes, their lips parting and nearly touching... the music swells...

Fade to black...

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