This article belongs to In Search of Laughs! column.

That's my question! Do you hate to be tickled?  Some people do. I am not one of those people.  Do you like to tickle your lover? I do. It's scientific name is : gargalesis! 


My online dictionary lists the following definitions for tickle: "...touch lightly...be affected with a tingling sensation...excite pleasurably...excite agreeably...titillate...to fill with mirth or pleasure...the act of tickling! " I am guilty of all of these acts.


Throughout my life, I've always enjoyed sharing the intimacy of this particular close encounter with the one I love.  I think that when you tickle the one you love, even with her protests, she knows the joy of giving up control to the one she trusts most.


I am big and tall, the girl I love is not. Recently, I accompanied my love to see her mother for the holidays.  Her mother, when the subject came up, told me, in her experience, forcible tickling was the most cruel deed that any person could ever suffer.  Now, in the center of my heart, I am truly a fan of all Moms, but...on the point of tickling, I beg to differ.


However, my love's mother did set me to thinking about the matter at hand.  I suppose I should admit tickling is a control issue first. Also I admit that very few humans I've known have tried to tickle me, so maybe I don't get why some folks don't like to be tickled.  Sure, why would anyone want to be tickled, with all that laughing and intimacy?


Psychologically, one's attitude toward tickling reveals a lot. By admitting I enjoy ticking my lover, you kind reader, should realize several things:


a) I think tickling is a TRUST issue.


b) I am a touchy-feely guy!  But, I do not tickle other people or strangers.  OK, maybe a couple of times in the last thirty years.  But, no charges have ever been filed against me for tickling.


c) I get sexual thoughts about the one I love throughout the day, and it would be inappropriate to respond to them in public.  So I tickle her when I need to. It's never longer that thirty seconds or so, and rarely on consecutive days, so I can always claim that I've been "good". Often when she and I enter a store, my love says: "Honey, get anything you want!" I consistently rush toward her

and firmly grasp both of her lower cheeks from behind! This is just to let her know that if I could have anything...I'll always reach for her first! With my large hands, I'm a firm believer in this style of communication.


d) I have been relentless in my tickling several times, and now I know it's wrong...really bad Lue bad wrong.  I'll try to be good. See: knismesis (This is the icky-mean kind of tickling)


e) and lastly...oh hell, you should've learned enough about me by now.


To tickle one's lover is, to me, primarily a bonding gesture!  I've also taught my lover that tickling builds combat skills.  With all the getting away from me she's accomplished since we started dating, I kind of doubt that most strangers could forcibly get control of her now.


Even Charles Darwin speculated tickling causes laughter through the anticipation of pleasure!  And this such tickling must be unexpected! That's why you can't tickle yourself! Yessirreee, I'm onboard that train!


As far as we can deduce about those people who do not enjoy being tickled... I can only say one thing for sure: Loosen up some...and learn that not being " in control " is exactly what being in a relationship is ALL about!


So, when the question comes up: To Tickle...Or NOT to tickle...please don't underestimate me continuing to express my love of her in this distinct way. If someone did me that way, why...I'd just be tickled pink!