September 29, 2010

Call Of The Itch

Print More

The inner eat itch is something most, if not all, of us have experienced but is seldom spoken of or described (at least that’s how it is in my friend circle).  To phrase it most crudely, it’s that feeling you get that makes you want to shove a pencil in your ear and swirl it around a bit.  Know what I’m talking about?  While most of us would probably settle for a cotton swab (I’d say Q-tip but I don’t want anyone to think that I’m talking about the rapper… you know American pop culture has reached a whole new level when gangster rap proponents start naming themselves after products created for the purpose of aural hygiene), there are other more unique ways of getting rid of the inner ear itch. About two weeks ago, while we had a heated debate over which Power Ranger was the best looking (easily Tommy), my roommate Kat did the most bizarre thing.  Know that sound you make when you’re trying to hock a lugey (FYI there are a myriad of web pages dedicated to discovering whether it’s hock or hack and loogie, lugey, lugie, etc.  The answer is still unclear but since I’m the one writing, we’ll go with my preferred spellings)?  Well she made it a continuous sound as she rubbed just beside her ear and tilted her head ever-so-slightly to the side.  I didn’t really register what she was doing but in retrospect, it was one of the oddest things I’ve witnessed.  My other roommates, surprised by my lack of perturbation, went on to tell me that she was trying to itch her inner ear.  Apparently Kat is beyond the realm of cotton swabs and pencils. While the average human being sees something weird and thinks “wow, that’s weird” here at “Outer Limits” we think “hey, we should try seeing how other people react to that!”  So, as expected, I then recruited my buddy Liz (well, maybe you didn’t expect that I would recruit her specifically, but a columnist always needs a sidekick… what’s Batman without Robin?  Or Captain Planet without all those culturally diverse kids with the rings?) to help me carry out my experiment.  The plan was that she would introduce me to some of her housemates as Hazel, a girl in her Spanish class who was assigned to work with her on a project and has no connection to The Sun whatsoever.  I would go over to her place and while meeting her housemates, during a perfectly normal conversation, without any explanation, I would bust out Kat’s home remedy to the inner ear itch.  Afterward, I was to continue the conversation as if nothing had happened and after I left, Liz would interrogate and find out what they thought of my, um, idiosyncratic tendency. Last Wednesday I went over to Liz’s as planned and she introduced me to a table filled with cute boys.  Nervous as hell, I blundered through the first part of our conversation while eating cake (it was good cake, too, I might add).  Then the time came.  It was now or never.  While two of the other guys spoke to each other, I tilted my head, put my fingers to the side of my ear and started to fake hocking a lugey.  I looked up when I was done and saw that the guys were staring at me.  They were amused but they weren’t about to wrestle me into a strait jacket. Upon explaining that I was itching my inner ear, everyone seemed oddly understanding.  In fact, one of the guys commented that his mother made a similar noise when trying to itch her inner ear.  Another stood by the use of the cotton swab, as I would expect most Americans would.  After a few more minutes, I bid them adieu and asked Liz to e-mail me what comments the boys made about my little interruption. Admittedly, I anticipated that the boys would be cruel.  I envisioned them deeming me a freak or attempting an impersonation.  I was more than wrong.  When asking the boys what they thought, one answered “everyone has their quirks!” while another replied with “What do you do when you get one [an inner ear itch], just suffer in silence?”  Nevertheless, the boys unanimously agreed that it was a highly unusual manner with which to sooth the inner ear. Alas, the results are in.  It IS okay to be weird.  People won’t even call you out on it!  So next time your ear itches, go ahead and try Kat’s favored method to resolve you issue.  Never again will you have to silently suffer.  But just in case you haven’t worked up the courage to itch like a champion, you can at least entertain yourself with his Youtube video of someone else doing it:

Original Author: Hazel Gunapala