Dear Reader, I kissed him.
He turned up at his job interview, at a games company in Dundee, wearing a blackwatch tartan kilt and a pair of mirrored sunglasses perched on his shaved forehead. His diabolic tattoos peeked out at the end of his sleeves. His monstrous boots evoked Dr Frankenstein; his hood evoked a Franciscan monk.
He spoke fast and knowledgeably in a clear, thick italian accent. He enunciated each syllable as if reciting Cicero or Byron. He grinned like a ferret about to snap at your smalls. He incanted of .Net and of C#, of Redmond and dinner at the Gates Mansion. He spoke with passion. He was a Guru.
His name was Diego: an Italian man with a Spanish forename. He was a little imp of a fellow with devilish eyes and a wicked grin floating with malice above his small pointy beard. If he wasn't a devil for real he sure was a devil of a man.
He got the job. And so began a love affair.
Diego already loved Scotland: he immediately bought another kilt, enrolled in bagpipe lessons with a retired policeman and sent for his wife and his ferrets.
I already loved Italy: I tried to impress Diego with the few words of Italian I knew and I presented him with a bottle of my parents' hand-made olive oil. In return he anointed me a Lord.
The love affair between Diego and his coworkers was unlike anything I have ever seen before: Diego was a cult.
Diego was passionate. Diego shouted with delight and swooned with fake distaste. Diego spoke with his hands and swore like an astronaut. Diego named his classes after "sexy guys".
Diego was tactile. Diego grinned when he saw you, clapped his hands at the pleasure of your presence and put his arms around you. Diego stroked your shoulder as he helped you program. Diego laughed at your jokes and told people you were a genius.
Diego hugged big, hairy, scottish men and big, hairy, scottish men hugged Diego back. Big oppressed presbyterian scottish men cuddled Diego and soon they started to cuddle each other. Diego's diabolic magick had converted them into cuddling cultists.
Diego was cheeky. Diego told fibs so wonderfully huge that they flipped over absurdity and back into plausibility. Diego made up words as often as he made up 'real' italian hand gestures. If it wasn't for Diego's lovely wife his fabrications, deceptions and inventions would have remained in the realm of reality and Diego would never be known as a spinner. But, Alessia was there, pin in hand, to burst his bubbles once in a while. Thus everything we knew of Diego, and Italy through his eyes, was built upon sand.
So… Bert needed a name for his iPhone software company: something exotic, something touchy-feely… Something Italian perhaps?
Naturally, Bert asked Diego…
"Toccame!", Diego announced with a flourish. "It means, 'Touch me … in a dirty way'".
Diego grinned broadly and made a hand gesture suggesting someone stroking a naked body in a loving way. Then, with a glint of his eyes, he turned his palm skyward and made another gesture that looked a lot more sensual.
"It is to caress", he affirmed with his teeth.
Dear Reader, I still have no idea what Toccame really means.