This is not a joke. It is as true as true can be. I do have an allergy to hair.
Exactly why I reached the ripe age of 18 without ever kissing a guy. You know why? Everytime it came close to it and the moment was only a centimeter away I would go " Atisshoo! Attishoo" And have to run miles away.
Why in the Sam Holy Hill did men have to have a moustache? Why a beard? Why, oh why, a stubble? - Did I hear you say, what about a clean-shaven man? Yes, what about him? Come real close and see for yourself. If by chance the stubble were to rub against the tip of your nose, I will bet all my fortune, that if you have an allergy to hair, you are going to go for a hell on a sneezing trip! Try it!
This is also why a good friend advised - turn to women. I debated with the thought in my head and thought it’s not really a bad idea. I mean at 18, you can’t really go on reading about kissing and still be a kissing-virgin.
The year was 1980 and the first International Women’s Meet had happened in Bombay. My friend, Cash, who had been participating, came back with excellent news!
" I have her for you. She is cute, petite, and very feminine and she has blue-green eyes. You are going to like her, I know."
I was excited – at last it was going to happen. The only hitch was that I would have to call her on my own, I mean make a blind date. Oh well for a kiss, seeming to be the most profound thing that could happen to two individuals at that age, any risk was worth it!
" Besides," my friend cheered me on, " she is a copywriter. You want to become one don't you?"
"Oh wow!" I thought, " This is it"!
I called a number. She picked it up and immediately she squealed " That’s the voice! That’s the voice! I have been dying to hear that voice. Just right for the Radio jingle."
We planned to meet that very Saturday. I didn’t know what she was talking about, this voice thing, I mean, but it was clear I was going to her house for you-know- what!
When I entered the house, she was in the bathroom. I went into her bedroom, - her "den" as she preferred to call it, and waited for her to come out. My eyes fell on Virginia Wolfe. I was just about to pull the book out of the shelf, when I felt the knob of the door turning – She was there! Wet from the bathroom with a towel around her. She was lovely! Tender light skin, sea-blue eyes and delicate boned jaws. Her hair wet from the shower thrown back from her wide forehead, I was enthralled as much as I was shocked! So fast?!?!?!? I thought to myself. She sat on the bed next to me and in a way of greeting me, she put her head forward and kissed my cheek " You are cute!" And there it was coming all over again. I tried to muffle the sneeze playing menacingly at my nose. But! - Atishoo! Atishoo! Atishoo! Atishoo!
Wet woman’s hair, thrown back from her face, slightly dripping with water on the towel covering her breast, raw emotions could be flowing…. Take a strand of that hair and roll it around your finger, as if to say you are rolling the idea around your head, the idea of unwrapping her towel from around her body; should you, should you not, now, or a little later…. Perhaps a little later! So you put your hand and hold her head from behind her ears, her wet hair resting in the insides of your palm, a deep sensual feeling warming up in your head, wet hair, on a woman’s head can be so mesmerizing….
But, why does it happen to me only? Why am I sneezing so badly?
" Here" she said, handing me some tissues " Looks like you’ve caught a sudden cold?"
Right at that moment, the doorbell rang and in came Rue.
"What an unexpected visit! Meet my new acquaintant, Julia" She said and whispered in my ear " Hope you are not dissappointed. I did not expect her at all"
"No, not at all", I said. " I am fine. I’ll leave right away and come back another day".
There it was, a good opportunity gone for a sneeze.
I graduated somehow quite late in life and was able to sleep with women only after I took a strong dose of Avil tablets! And that did me sleepy! So there were other problems to face – you know the sleeping right after stories! They hound you even if you are a woman and a powerful war can ensue in the bedroom over how they feel used. But who is to tell them that I am drugged and the effect of the drug can wear off any moment and I could be sneezing all over again. Who would not have loved to nestle on that lovely spread of locks on a white pillow? Who would not have loved to play with hair after passionate lovemaking! Who wouldn’t????
Years have passed on and much fortune lost on allergy tablets. The other day I was at a nightclub and I saw a lovely girl. I must confess even though I was old enough to be her mother, I really got the hots for her! So I asked her to dance with me to which she readily agreed. She was bright and intelligent, socially aware and very active with her films and what not. She had short crew-cut hair and a clean face – at least that is what I saw in the dim lights. Name? Tejal.
" I believe you’ve fallen in love with a girl old enough to be your daughter?" a good friend asked.
" Don’t be a goose! Don’t you know that as you grow older, your love grows younger? That’s what makes Salman Rushdie, V S Naipaul, Paul McCartney click! It’s common you know!’
"Well" she said a bit doubtfully, " In her case, you’ll have to see"
" Why is she going steady with someone"? I enquired a bit worried.
"Sort of! I don’t know if she is going steady with someone, but I know she is steadily trying to grow a beard"
" Atishoo"! You don’t say!"
"I do say! Don’t be so black and white! She’s exploring gender and sexuality - it’s many faces".
She handed me a box of tissue. " You’ll need lots of it I can see!"