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Me Tarzan! You Jane!
Once upon a time a caveman, while out for a walk, came a across a young woman. Struck by her beauty he immediately tried to get her attention by violently thumping his chest, his good imitation of Tarzan's victory cry reverberating through the length and breadth of the forest.
His mother, seeing that he was receiving no reaction, said in disgust, "Oh, Billy, when it comes to women you have no idea. Instead of all that thumping and roaring, why don't you give the girl what she really wants?"
Being a bright lad, he knew exactly what she meant. Quick as a wink he placed a ring of heavy rope around her ankle and took her home to his cave.
No woman could resist such a pledge of love. Not then. Not ever.
Having learned their lesson, men have been placing all sorts of rings on women's fingers ever since. For the less demanding there were grass rings and flower rings and string rings and ribbon rings.
The more ostentatious ladies liked a bit of metal, and even more, a good-sized rock to go with it. Seeing it sparkling on their finger like a star in the sky, they would throw their arms around the lad crying, "Oh, Jimmy, I do love you so. I'll never love anyone else but you." The trusting fool believed it, of course, little realizing that as soon as she was shown a bigger carat, she'd be off, possibly even carrying his paltry offering with her.
What fun the girls used to derive from trying the ring now on this finger, now on that. Some thought it looked best on their thumb, others preferred to have it on their tallest digit, and others still chose a finger according to the needs of the occasion. When attending the opera, for example, an index finger was great for showing off that rock as you pointed it in this or that direction. Visiting a spinster aunt ? or as the politically correct phrase in Australia has it, the "never validly married" lady - it seemed more charitable to place it on a less conspicuous finger, the out of the way small finger.
But whatever the finger, the girl always placed the ring on the right hand, the dominant hand. This was the hand that cooked and sewed and rocked the cradle and spanked bottoms of future kings and queens.
Somehow that ring gave a girl a sense of power which began to alarm her young man. She might be the queen of his heart in the privacy of her boudoir, but in the world he must always be king.
Taking his lady aside, he began whispering sweet nothings into her ear, which included let's switch that ring from the right hand to the left.
"But it is the right hand which is the dominant one, my love."
"Well, you see my dearest, ahem, ahem," he could hardly tell her that if there was any dominating to be done, he wanted to be the one doing it, "the heart is on the same side as the left hand."
"Why, don't you see, my sweetness, there's a vein that runs right from the heart to the left-hand finger."
"I didn't know you knew anything about anatomy?"
"When you're a man," he says modestly, "there's very little that you don't know. Now about that ring."
"But which finger, exactly, is this vein attached to?"
"Which finger can you move least?"
"The finger right next to my little finger, of course."
"That's the one!"
Vlady is an Australian Civil Marrige Celebrant.
She is the author of "The Complete Book of Australian Weddings" and "The Small Organisation Handbook".
She is a member of the Queensland Civil Marriage Celebrant Association, Celebrants' Training Association, Australian Authors' Association and Romance Writers of Australia Association.
You can visit Vlady at her website http://www.vlady-celebrant.com
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