Tuesday, August 07, 2007

The Kissing Thing

Quebecers often greet one another with what Americans and the ROC (Rest of Canada) often refer to as "the kissing thing." The technique is simple: a short peck on each cheek (of the face - shame on your dirty, dirty mind if I needed to specify which). Newbies to the technique often report that it is awkward at first; that the etiquette is unclear. Is it acceptable to air kiss the cheek? Which side do you start on? What do you do with your hands? What if you are sick? What if the other person is sick? What is considered "lingering"? What is considered "loitering"?

It becomes even more confusing in Europe. Europeans as a whole are well-versed in the art of the kiss as a greeting. However, the number of kisses differs from region to region:

France and Quebec: 2
Luxembourg: 3
Poland: 4
Belgium (french): 1
Belgium (flemmish): 0

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