“It begins with a massage,” the old man said between coughs. His lungs could clearly not handling the double demands of breathing and talking at the same time. He paused a bit to catch up on the former activity. His demeanor was such that one – if one was not familiar with him that is – would think that the pauses, which were many, are to gather his thoughts. But it were not so, for this lecture he’d delivered many a times before.
“The massage must,” he resumed, “as a matter of course be sensual, but not overtly sexual – if at all.” Another great pause. His right eyebrow had a consistent twitch. It was subtle at first, but once it was noticed it became a permanent fixture that could not be ignored. The harder you try, the more prominent it becomes.
“The massage is important to establish physical rapport. It must be full body – front and back – and it must be in total nakedness.” The next pause was indeed for the harvesting of thoughts. An improvisation was afoot: “You would think all massages are sensual wouldn’t you?” He asked no one in particular, “But allow me to let you in on a major secret: when you give a lady a massage, you must take your time. Every inch of her skin must feel touched – caressed. And no no no; don’t you go for the obvious parts. Concentrate on the skin in its entirety. Especially the parts that are hardly ever touched – like that little inward curve on her back. But,” he wheezed a bit trying to catch the breath that threatened to run away with his impassioned improv, then a fit of wet cough colonised the air. The glass of water on his side table still untouched. Someone looked towards it, almost imploring him to have a go at it with their eyes. But the old man was having none of that.
“But,” hardly was the second syllable out when the cough started again. He slouched towards his knees almost in deference, seemingly beseeching his lungs to hold on for a while as he tries to lay down the law. The lungs acceded. “The importance of the massage is to build physical rapport,” he paused in confusion. “No,” his right index finger gently rolled on his temple, as if rewinding his thoughts to set him back on the right path. “I have already canvassed that haven’t I?” Again the question was rhetorical. “Indeed. I did. Indeed.” He rapped. “Suffice to say – the massage is most important. Most important.” A cough threatened but pulled back its assault to let him continue his train of thought: “This way, she is relaxed. Not just with you, but in her skin. And,” he gulped up a big chunk of phlegm that had escaped his throat mid-speech, “and needless to say, she is comfortable with being naked and touched naked by you. That is absolutely key.” Silence engulfed the room, the seeds of knowledge could be heard scampering all over his audiences’ mindfields in search of fertile soil to take root.
“After that,” he broke the silence without much ado, “you can turn up the volume a little.” His voice did not sound as laboured as before, almost as if his whole being had got a new lease on life. One could swear even some wrinkles had been ironed out of his beleaguered face. “The light kisses on her back, on the inside of her knees,” he continued. “If she’s not too sensitive take a toe or two into your mouth. You would have found her erogenous zones during the massage if you were listening attentively. Yes,” he snapped his finger. “You must listen very intently during the massage to locate her erogenous zones. She will not always vocalize when you hit the right spots – but there may be an involuntary whimper. Or a sudden change in breathing. Take note of all of this.” He reached for the water, but the thought that entered his head was quicker than the trembling hand, so he pulled it back to give the thought his full attention: “Be very attentive…take note…” he searched for the thought that had just crossed his mind, “Take note of the erogenous zones…” The search seemed in vain. He began tracing his steps: “Take note…erogenous zones…breathing…knees…kisses. Yes!” Eureka! “Kisses! Kisses…concentrate on the erogenous zones you took note of during the massage. Concentrate might not be the appropriate term. Because you must never forget that the skin is the largest erogenous zone. The other spots on her body that are more sensitive than others – those you must prioritise, without neglecting the rest of the body. Yes! Prioritise. Be!” A sudden sneeze cut him short and placed an unnecessary emphasis on the last word. He looked around in confusion, as if he had suddenly lost something and it was to be found somewhere in the faces of his students.
He lifted his right hand off the armrest of the brown leather chair and reached for the inner left pocket of his blazer. A meticulously folded crisp white handkerchief emerged victorious. He unfolded one layer, slowly acquainted it with his nose, gave a half-hearted blow, folded it back, and off it slipped back into its hiding place. Ready and willing for its next task. He pinched his nose and shook his head rather violently. After a deep breath he resumed, “Be bold in your approach, but still cautious. Play around the sites of pleasure. Circle her areola with tongue or finger, trace their contours. Almost as if studying it for a sculpture. Always, always soft touches. Featherlight pecks on her mons. Maybe even an innocent – a by the way even – flick of her clitoris with the furthest tip of your tongue. It must be so subtle that it will not be known if,” he trailed off as he was running out of breath. He placed his leathered hand on his chest and closed his eyes. Or rather made an attempt at closing his eyes – their sheer size, and the fact that they bulged all the way out of his skull almost as if attempting to join the underground railway, made it impossible for his eyelids to cover them in toto. In their attempt to do their only job, they left a tiny space open, just a little over the width of hair. Through this crack one could see the whites of his eyes. Whichever deity he was praying to must be the quick delivery type because he resumed his presentation with renewed gusto:
“It should not even be known for sure that it happened, that’s how subtle the tongue-tip to clit affair should be. But be careful not to let her dwell too much on this or any other enquiry. The point of this whole exercise is to overload her senses. Not a single train of thought or feeling need hold her captive for more than a few split seconds. Maybe at this time massage her mons with the inside of both your thumbs, in a circular motion. Playfully bite her nipples before she gets too comfortable with the yoni massage.” He smiled – it was more of a smirk really. But his eyes definitely smiled.
The smile wore off and was gradually replaced by a forlorn look. “Eye contact,” he said. “When the time comes, maintain eye contact.” He looked into the ether. What felt like a century passed before he muttered another word. “Seduction, foreplay, even sex – all of that can be done by machines, or animals. But lovemaking is a different beast. It can only happen between two human beings.” His disposition had gone sombre, he was far removed from his audience. He was alone, ruminating on the deeper truths of his heart. “Two human beings. How do you differentiate between a machine or animal and a human being?” He scanned the faces of his students for a spark. He found they were none the wiser to answer him, so he took the mantle upon himself. “The difference is that only a human being has a soul. The soul? The soul can only be seen through the eyes. That is why eye contact is indispensable to lovemaking.” He took another deep breath. The handkerchief made yet another grand appearance, this time to serve the lone bead of sweat that lay comfortably on his forehead. Once done, it took its majestic retreat to the left inner pocket.
“When the time comes to go into her for that first time, maintain eye contact…” he trailed off in exhaustion. “Face each other,” he continued in laboured speech. His voice becoming fainter. “Humanize her, humanize yourself.” He reached out for his wooden staff with his left hand. Upon tapping the floor with it, his assistant came rushing from the back of the room. The assistant disappeared as soon as the old man was helped to his feet. “Ah,” he stopped mid-stride, “my water.” The assistant appeared again, grabbed the glass and handed it over to him. He downed it in one go. “Water!” he announced as he started walking, leaning heavily on his staff, “That is the most important thing. Most important!”
Also published on Medium.