By Lauren Walsh

As I was sitting on the CATA bus the other day, a couple sitting next to me decided that it was the appropriate time to have a make-out session. Considering that I had just finished taking a terrible exam and felt somewhat under the weather, watching them exchange saliva made me feel as if I was going to regurgitate lunch. It’s understandable that Valentine’s Day has passed months ago, which may have an influence on all this public display of affection, but I also believe that there is a perfect time and place for everything. Whether it is, thanking your girlfriend for that amazing dinner, or showing your boyfriend how grateful you are for that obnoxious red hearted bear, this display of gratitude should have some kind of physical limit in public areas.

This is hard for me to say because I have always been a fan of PDA. I still believe that life is too short to not show somebody your love or affection, but I think that out of respect to the rest of us, there should be some ground rules. It’s as if the person you were sitting next to in class decided to let out flatulence without any warning or remorse; they decided to do it because they felt that it was important to them despite the olfactory damage inflicted. They’re ultimately the kind of person that will do that at a wedding or funeral, and while to some this may be disrespectful and shameful, others take pride in their public display of gas; similar to how others take pride in their PDA.

Although passing gas in public may be considered a funny quality, it exceeds the limit of proper social behavior, like PDA. People should take into consideration that when they’re in public, they can still act like themselves while respecting others. Otherwise we would live in a vulgar society, where people wouldn’t care about their fellow human beings; PDA should still exist, but with boundaries. Such as, how people view food superstitions like the five- second rule, where if their food drops on the floor, they have five seconds to pick it up before it gets contaminated with bacteria. This principle should be applied to PDA in the sense that, people should have a “ten-second rule” of having a make-out session. If I am on a thirty minute bus ride, I sure as hell do not want to see a reenactment of a love scene from the movie The Notebook, on my way home.

“PDA should be displayed appropriately, as if you were a parent in front of your children. Making-out for a long period of time in front of your children is as unsuitable as if you were to do it in front of others,” stated political science student, Leiana Monkman.

If you’re a passionate person, it’s easier to say that you’ll limit your practice of PDA rather than to actually do it. It’s not as if every time you go to kiss your boyfriend or girlfriend you’re going to time that kiss, its more about being aware of where you are at the moment and taking it into consideration. Personally, being passionate is one the best qualities somebody could have, but knowing where and how to display it makes it more admirable. When researching what others thought about PDA, I came across the public display of affection quiz at Gagirl.com and found it to be pretty accurate and amusing; here are some of the questions:

Is it ever okay to PDA in church or synagogue?

  • Never
  • Maybe
  • Every time you go.

At the movies, you sit:

  • In the middle row, in the center to get the best view.
  • Anywhere you can sit together and not get a neck cramp.
  • In the back row, nice and private!

And my favorite…

At a party Saturday night, you two spend how much time “upstairs” together?

  • There was an upstairs?
  • Maybe twenty minutes.
  • There was a party downstairs?

If you answered C to every question, Gagirl.com states, “Think twice before groping each other. You may be making everyone around you feel uncomfortable. Be especially careful in such public spaces as church or businesses, where it is taboo for intense PDA. We suggest you tone it down a few notches.”

So next time you’re in a class or on the bus with your girlfriend or boyfriend and they’re looking especially good that day, try to restrain yourself. Show them a preview and let your partner see the movie in a private place. Like I’ve stated in my previous article, “Patience is a virtue.”

The longer you wait to you let out your passionate side to your loved one, the more exhilarating it will feel when you finally have the right moment.

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