Saturday 25 February 2012

Oh Booger, where art thou!

Ah, the usual evening rush hour leaving you immobilized in your car waiting for your lane to pick up speed. Lost in your thoughts about work, about home, about the football game and maybe the hot new intern in your office. The sudden sense of relief in your nose.........umm what was that and why are you staring at a little piece of something on your pinky?
In what may be an evolutionary phase, where living beings had to endure foreign objects getting sucked into their breathing system, came the sticky discharge at the point of entry capturing all floating things in the air and sticking them up on the wall of what is commonly called the nose. The English language came to call this discharge "snot", a fifth grader learns to call it "Booger".
Strangely, the stuff in your ear is honourably termed "wax" but you can't make a candle of it. It essentially has the same ingredients as in your nose but surprisingly not found to be as disgusting as "picking your nose". In fact you have ear buds and others, maybe harmful, to rid your ear of this waxy substance which interestingly is in a blind spot, but I am left with no answers for tools to loosen those internal nose hangings for disposal and have to rely on one's good ol fingers.
So what makes us "pick" our noses when we are least aware of such doing? You deliberately clean your ears. You get up in meetings and excuse yourself to visit the facilities. Ever heard of someone say "Excuse me, but I need to pick my nose".
This probably unique action dates back to the time when man was an ape and the ape was, well, just an ape. Though the ape ultimately evolved into man, the man continued with little changes in this department of behavior. Call it primal, or call it disgusting but all humans and some simians indulge in it almost on a daily basis. I call it an involuntary act, something like twitching of a nerve, born out of necessity and that nagging tickling feeling where whole fingers get devoured inside cavernous openings of your nose.
You will indulge in it mostly at a time you are sitting idle like waiting for the light to change or in park or a library with carefree abandon. It's a pretty simple procedure. A push of the finger into the nose, a little turn, maybe a little digging, finger pulled out, and the discovery examined minutely. Once satisfied, roll the booger in to a tiny ball and flick it into outer space with your thumb and index finger. In all likely hood, it will fall within a radius of 3 feet from you. Ranging from the hint of green to the black, all these nuggets will surround you, clog your keyboard and lie sprinkled on the floor.
Now having broached the topic, it is essential at this stage to know your subject. My research pulls out (pun unintended) the following common types.
The Elastic - This is a relatively fresh one like chewing gum. Does not release itself easily and has a propensity to cling to the nostril. Will stretch reasonably well and break off in the middle if stretched too far. Extremely malleable but difficult to let go. This will also cling to your finger and needs to be wiped off for effective disposal, therefore the streaks on the surrounding surfaces.
The Curler - This is a very dry one plastered along the wall of your nostril.  Will drop off easily once scrapping begins.  It is mostly curved inwards in a semi circle. Easy to remove and easy to dispose.
The Deep Rooted - This one is a toughie. It clings to back of your nostril and it takes a pinkie with a really long nail to pull it out. Being at its position, it’s mostly a fresher with characteristics of the Elastic. This may also occur in largish blobs and will spread across your fingers if not handled with care. Try as you might it refuses to let go leaving you with the only option of wiping it off on the closest available surface.
The Antennae Bud - This one hangs to a hair in your nostril mostly sticking out of the nose. More than the owner, it irritates the person the owner is talking to in a face to face conversation. Needs two fingers to be pulled out.
The Matted - This is a combination of booger and nose hair. It spreads itself over a wide area and clings to hair in a web like manner. This one needs to be pulled with a thumb and index finger in a pinch. May be combined with the Antennae Bud and can cause pain and loss of some hair.
The Pearl - This is a tricky one. Dry on the outside but still wet and sticky on the inside. The moment you pull it out, it sticks to your finger. Disposal should be similar to the Deep Rooted. 
Interestingly my observation also shows that your fingers will never be too big to not enter your nose for this little operation, which brings me to an interesting question "Why does a Gorilla have a big nose? Because he has fat fingers". Funny but true!