Do any of ye happen to know what the pheromones are? I only learned what they were this week, when I read about a dating site based in Mullingar.
These are not the greatest of days for the survival of the pheromone. Most of the romance, both physical and intellectual, is done online now. There are people only dying to touch each other during these times of isolation and abstinence. I am waiting for the case to come up in the courts. The headline would read: "Couple who live in different houses caught in bed." Breaking isolation is the new adultery.
At least now we know what it must have been like long ago. There was no sex before marriage back in the old days.
There were times when a man and a woman would wait years for the big night. Courtships were long in those days. It wasn't so much because the couple were trying to be sure to be sure, but more of a question of waiting for the old people to die, or reach pension age, whichever came first. Then the man would get the farm.
Nowadays if a mother said to her son or daughter "wait until you get married", the answer would be either "too late", or she'd be greeted with a fit of laughing.
Last week we told you the story of The Woman Who Hasn't Had Sex For 39 years, a fairly true tale, in parts, of total abstinence, in full.
The crowd going nowadays wouldn't stay away from each other for 39 days. Lent is 40 days and I know of no one who gives up sex for Lent, other than those who have already given it up like priests, popes and the like.
People give up the drink. They give up sweets and a good few will give up cigarettes, but hardly anyone gives up sex. Lent is a religious festival. Sex before marriage is a sin. But drinking isn't. So they give up the drink and stay on the sex. Makes no sense to me and it's very unfair on us publicans.
Monday next will test out the patriotism of the nation. Monday is the day when we can mix with people from different households. So if a couple haven't met up in two months, then they will only be dying to see each other on Monday.
Fine, you might say. Great. Off ye go. Good luck to ye. But here's the story. The meeting has to be outdoors and the meeters must be two metres apart.
Bao Xishun, the world's tallest man, at 7 feet 9 inches, saved the lives of two dolphins. Bao stuck his arms into the dolphin's stomachs and supposedly pulled out serrated plastic.
Just say, by way of illustration, if Bao had a Kerry girlfriend, well then he wouldn't be able to touch her, even if she stayed two metres away, as touching isn't allowed.
The HSE rule is unambiguous.
I'm certain Bao hasn't a Kerry girlfriend, as he would have been recruited to play full-forward for Kerry when Kieran Donaghy retired.
Giannis Antetokounmpo has the world's longest arms. He could reach a woman in the next townland.
Not that Giannis would do such a thing. I'm only just asking what if a man with arms close to the length of the world record holder wore gloves, or put on hand sanitiser, would that kind of long-range touching be alright with the HSE? Their faces would be two metres apart, so is that alright then?
There are ingenious implements for picking things up that are used by people who find it difficult to bend down.
The picker-upper is a stick with a catching mechanism at the end. A lever is squeezed and the claw tightens around the object on the ground, which is usually soft, like a piece of paper, or a sock. Or something you don't want to touch, like a dead mouse.
Well, here's the plan. What if we adapted an existing mechanical device to maximise intimacy in the times that are in it?
The picker-upper could be used to give the sweetheart a little pinch on the bottom by pulling on the handle. The claw at the bottom of the picker would tighten. That's only if he or she is so minded to permit such an act of playful fondness.
There seems to be no other solution. Not everyone has arms as long as Antetokounmpo. And most of us wouldn't even reach as far in as a dolphin's tonsils.
But the pheromones might be the answer.
I used to think pheromones were some sort of artificial sweetener or a girl's name in 'Harry Potter'.
This week in the 'Westmeath Examiner', Mairead Loughman did offer some comfort to those who were forced apart by the very necessary restrictions. Mairead is the founder of Love HQ and offers a personalised matchmaking service.
Mairead is also a dating coach and what she says makes sense. Mairead is all for staying in touch, on Zoom or via Facetime. But we need to meet, in person.
Here's Mairead. "The science behind dating is pheromones [the hormones linked to sexual attraction]. That's why people often click when they are online, they get on great and they think that they have this huge connection because they are banging messages off to each other.
"But the problem is you need to be sitting in front of someone to see if you are compatible and if there really is chemistry there."
I hope the pheromones travel at least two metres. Now there are some who contend the flying pheromones are confined to the animal kingdom but the best way to find out is to get as near as you can to the man or woman you think you fancy. When you click it will be for real and not an online click.
There are stories of cheats who spray on stuff like after-shave pheromones. The cheats should be kicked out of the game.
Touching will come back, but in the meantime stay at least two metres apart.
And even if you are going out with men of the stature and with the reach of Bao Xishun or Giannis Antetokounmpo, tell them to keep their hands to themselves.
The girls long ago used to get a warning from the mother before they went off to the dance and it was "keep your two legs in the one stocking". Now the boys will be told to keep their hands in their pockets.