Tuesday, September 9, 2008

On Touching Oral Membranes

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Most people probably know us as the 'Mormons', based on our belief in a book of ancient scripture called 'The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ'. One of the unique features of the church is the absence of a paid clergy. Leaders are 'called of God, as was Abraham' (Hebrews 5:4), to serve in various capacities.

Several years ago i was serving as the bishop of our ward (local congregation) and was counseling with a young woman. She had attended a church youth conference during the summer and one of the speakers in a workshop she attended encouraged them to go ask their bishop when they returned home what their policy was on kissing.
The question caught me off guard. I wasn't certain that I had specific policy on kissing, but since she asked I decided to formulate some guidance. I told her my guidance was as easy as 1-2-3.

1 - only ONE kiss per night. I felt that a kiss could be a fitting end to an enjoyable evening, but more than one would send confusing signals to a teenager.

2 - between the kissing participants at least TWO eyes should be open. This would help ensure that thoughts and actions were kept within proper boundaries. I told her that either they needed to agree on who kept both eyes open, or coordinate which one eye each person should keep open while kissing. My suggestion was, if the latter option was chosen, to each keep the same eye open. Right eye staring at left eye might be a little unnerving. Then again, maybe that wouldn't be so bad after all.

3 - no more than THREE seconds long. I loved playing basketball as a kid. If three seconds in the lane was a violation in that sport, then three seconds for a kiss was certainly long enough.

Given a few more years experience and seeing the difficulties that youth can encounter in dating I have added two more 'guidance'.

4 - make certain there are FOUR on the floor. I don't even know if standard transmission cars are referred to any more as having four on the floor -- probably not as my last standard transmission was a five speed. However, the four I suggest on the floor are feet. If between the two participants they have four feet firmly planted flat on the ground, it would make it very difficult to get into a position that is too compromising. I would extend this guidance to all dating situations - not just kissing.

5 - finally I would suggest that there not be a kiss until they had gone on FIVE official dates. I know that kids today don't 'date' the way us old folks did in our youth, but if kisses are to mean anything special, they certainly shouldn't be doled out before the relationship has had a chance to develop a meaning.

Well, that's it for this post. Well, almost. I came across this topical comic strip a short while ago. (If the comic strip is blurry on your screen, just click on it and it will open in a new window at the correct size.)

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