Wednesday, July 3, 2013


There is apparently a new trend sweeping Japan and threatening to infect the youth of America. It is known as “oculolinctus” or “worming” and involves one person licking the eyeball of another person as a display of affection or eroticism. The practice has caused an outbreak of conjunctivitis in several Japanese elementary schools and American ophthalmologists are warning that it could also transmit herpes. Continuing unabated, the trend could even leave some with permanent sight loss.

One advocate interviewed by the Huffington Post was 29-year old environmental science major Elektrika Energias who continues the practice despite contracting “a weird offshoot of tuberculosis” that caused “corneal ulcers” and month’s stay in the hospital. Reflecting on the episode and the fact that she continues to ask men to lick her eye; Elektrika mused, "I'm just safer now, I guess ... Live and learn. I mean they don't really make tongue rubbers, but maybe they should."
It seems like the moment my wife and I decide to have children “the talk” becomes more complicated. A few decades ago one could sit down with their offspring and explain to them that unprotected sexual contact with others could lead to pregnancy, chronic illness, and even death. It was undoubtedly awkward, but there was no need to mention “oculolinctus safety.” Now I have to worry about pupil-syphilis and corneal-gonorrhea along with bath-salts and butt-chugging. At this rate, “the talk” will become a four-part miniseries instead of an awkward lunch at Wendy’s.

What does it say about society that we feel the need to lick each other’s eyeballs in order to demonstrate or experience affection? Was the open-mouth kiss just becoming too impersonal? Pretty soon the adult film industry will be churning out ocular-themed titles like Myopic Mistresses 4 or Lens-Licking Latinas 6.

I did enjoy Miss Energias’s passionate defense of the activity and the subsequent behavioral changes she implemented after “worming” put her in the hospital for 4 weeks. I am sure her friends and family can rest easy knowing that she is “just safer now, I guess..” Undoubtedly she has implemented a rigorous screening process to insure that her iris is bathed by only the best of tongues which is a much more prudent course of actions than say, not having random men lick your eye in the first place. Perhaps she can translate her vision of an ocular prophylactic into a business opportunity. In a few years Trojan may be cutting her a check.

I doubt any of these ophthalmologists ever envisioned themselves having to specifically instruct the public not to lick each other’s eyeballs. A reasonable person would assume such boundaries were implicit. This same philosophy should also make it unnecessary to ask people not to spit on a baby or smear feces in the hair of strangers.

The real question would be how the first instance of “oculolinctus” occurred. I have been alive and residing in a reasonably populated area for over three decades and I cannot recall even one instance where I came close to accidentally licking another human’s cornea. It isn’t like bumping into someone on the subway. There must be a concerted effort on the part of both giver and receiver while taking into account variables like height differential. Since there is evidence this may have even started in the late 90’s I picture a young couple in a dorm room while Mazzy Star plays in the background:

Brad, do you think we will always be together?

You complete me Lisa and my every waking moment is consumed by my love for you.

I know I have been frustrating these past few weeks but I wanted to make sure I was ready to…

Ssshhh…. You don’t have to apologize. I never wanted you to feel forced.

Well, I think I am finally ready to take our relationship to the next level. Do we still have that bottle of saline solution? Should be use a soft lens just to be on the safe side?

Let’s just open our eyes, protrude our tongues, and do what comes natural……..

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