My main squeeze: Bob Lovett is holding on

‘Love abounds way beyond the physical.’

‘There’s nothing worse than a one-sided hug.’ | Photo: Anastasia Sklyar on Unsplash

Some years ago, before Covid, during an earlier period of national depression, a public-spirited citizen stood on a busy street with a notice offering free hugs. Even before that, during the heady sixties, a dear friend of mine who had become a widower in his middle thirties confessed that the thing he missed most was physical contact with other human beings. This was in Scotland when the emancipation of women was still in its infancy. ‘The problem is’, he said, ‘that our macho culture discourages men from hugging one another, and our Presbyterian roots constrain us from hugging other men’s wives’.

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