If my nose is running, my thoughts are leaking

Those scientists, always doing studies. It’s as if they have nothing better to do. Instead of “studying” things, why aren’t they working on those jet cars we were promised? Where’s my pill in a meal? And the current lack of teleportation is the great disappointment of my generation, second only to the career of Judd Nelson.

A co-worker recently sent me a link to a study that determined that people (like me) who drink their coffee black are more likely to be psychopaths. I swear if she sends me a link like that again, I will cut her!

Of course, for every study there’s a counter study. In response to the coffee findings, I decided to Google “Why black coffee drinkers are the best.” I found a reply, of course, but it was from some website called “BroBible,” which didn’t convince me that black coffee would allow me to “get shredded, show your Dad Bod the middle finger and get laid,” but it did make me fully embrace the impending demise of the Y chromosome, as predicted in, yes, a recent study.

My favourite study of the past year was one that concluded that middle-aged sex keeps the brain sharp. I imagine this finding led to countless husbands turning to their wives and saying, “Hey, honey, you’re looking kind of stupid tonight, so howzabout…?” In other research, middle-age divorce rates continue to climb.

This week, though, I read about a newly released study that found that having a cold nose means you are thinking too hard. The news story didn’t explain how researchers quantified “thinking too hard.” Did it mean trying to work out a difficult math problem? Or trying to remember the title song for the madcap 80s sit-com “Perfect Strangers”?

The cold-nose researchers are hoping to use these findings to measure workload stress in employees without disrupting actual workflow. Instead, facial monitoring will indicate when employees need a break. Of course, they will also need hidden cameras to ensure that workers aren’t sneaking off to stick their face in the ice machine.

The reason the nose gets cold is that heavy concentration alters breathing. (Heavy breathing also alters concentration, but let’s leave what the judge explained to me about “improper phone behaviour” for another time.) This diverts blood to the brain at the expense of the extremities, your nose being one such extremity.

But like Gene Hackman in the late 90s, blood is everywhere, which means other extremities must be vulnerable as well. This leads one to wonder what the cooling of other body parts might indicate, and by “one” I mean “me” and not researchers, who, it turns out, do have better things to do.

Cold ears: You are thinking too hard about all your exes and wondering whether they are living happy lives, though you secretly hope not.

Cold forehead: You are driving with your head hanging out the window again.

Cold left hand: You are on the verge of creating a new literary genre, Oh-Wellian fiction, in which everybody lives in an oppressive, dystopian society but just kind of deals with it.

Cold feet: Studies show that there is a 40 percent chance you will soon be sleeping on the sofa.

Tingling Ring Finger: You have just come to the realization that the totality of your life’s romantic success has nothing to do with looks or personality but consistently good lighting.

Throbbing kneecap: You have just come to the realization that morning riots are the most important mêlée of the day.

Sensitive inside elbow: Don’t let a difference of opinions keep you from your goals, sensitive inside elbow person. Friends and co-workers will come around to your point of view through a combination of reasoned argument and anonymous threatening texts. Remember that there is no “I” in “team” but there is an “I” in “grapefruit,” so you should probably eat more grapefruit. Pisces figures promiscuously. Money matters.

Frosted tips: No.

Frosty reception: Should have brought a hostess gift.

Chilly Willy: A highly underrated cartoon character.

Cool Runnings: An underrated 90s movie that did not star Gene Hackman or (obviously) Judd Nelson.

I hope this guide will be useful to you so that you know at all times what your body is doing. And I can assure you, as I’m certain you can guess, that right now my nose is very, very warm.

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About rossmurray1

I'm Canadian so I pronounce it "Aboot." No, I don't! I don't know any Canadian who says "aboot." Damnable lies! But I do know this Canadian is all about humour (with a U) and satire. Come by. I don't bite, or as we Canadians say, "beet."
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29 Responses to If my nose is running, my thoughts are leaking

  1. “…Oh-Wellian fiction, in which everybody lives in an oppressive, dystopian society but just kind of deals with it.” This line caused a tickling in my funny bone, which is odd, because I’m pretty sure I don’t have one. Thanks for the morning laugh, Ross! (I feel self-conscious about that exclamation point due to your last post, so thanks for that as well.)

  2. byebyebeer says:

    I have cold extremities and lots of thoughts, though more of the mad about you theme song variety than anything useful. I thought it was just poor circulation but glad to know it serves a purpose.

  3. Pingback: Rays of Light on a Dismal January Day | The Green Study

  4. Thanks for the fun! I also love the “Oh-Wellian” line, you saved it for the right era.
    We pull out the DVD for “Cool Runnings” every winter Olympics.
    Hard to believe The Times, an erudite wrapper for cold fish, even deigns to recognize the existence of sex, much less a middle-aged sort.

    • rossmurray1 says:

      Does anybody still wrap fish in newspaper? If you said that to a young person, would they even know what you’re talking about? (“Newspaper,” that is.)

      • You’re right, I actually use an old iPad cover to bring home fish from the market. I use a lot of archaic phrases, I was a history major. My grandfather Fred was a paper NYTimes loyalist, and always talked about The Free Press/The Post/Fish/Bird Cages, and my dad still says “VCR” for DVD, DVR, etc.

        • rossmurray1 says:

          One of my journalist mentors, who started what we now call a blog in 1996 (!) refers to it as the “dead tree press.”
          When we first converted from VCR, my wife had a hard time giving up the impulse to rewind the DVD.

          • That Jack Black movie “Be Kind Rewind” will have to be renamed, no one will get it.
            My parents went to the same college, and talk about a huge chestnut tree by the Admin Bldg, which was used as a crammed bulletin board by students, for concerts, movies, selling stuff, etc. . I don’t think they’ve ever realized how incredibly antiquated and primitive that sounds.

  5. Carrie Rubin says:

    Great, now I’m going to be wondering if my husband–a black coffee drinker–is a psycho. Maybe I best sleep with one eye open…

  6. ksbeth says:

    chronic cold shoulder – you will lose the ability to connect with other humans

  7. And all this time I was hoping middle-aged celibacy kept the brain sharp. Well, that explains why I can never find the remote.

  8. Ellen Hawley says:

    Chilly Willy doesn’t translate well into British.

  9. Gavin Keenan says:

    A very amusing story. The family collage cover photo is wonderful. Oh, lucky man!

  10. List of X says:

    And if your hands feel cold and dead, check if the government is trying to take away your gun.

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