Excerpt: Nasal Hygiene (Survey)
Where, typically, do you pick your nose (bathroom, ear, kitchen…)?
Fortunately, only one person, a 22-year-old woman who writes that she “revels” in bodily functions, mentions “kitchen” as one of her favorite hunting grounds. The rest of us favor, in descending order, the bathroom, the car, the bedroom, bed itself, our homes, our desks at work, the living room, the shower, in front of the television, and on public transportation, the library, outside, the elevator, and on bicycle. 18% answer that they’ll pick anywhere at all, 10% say they’ll do it anywhere they have privacy, and a thrill-seeking 4% do it anywhere they feel no one is looking. Women and men tend to pick different places. Women more often favor bedrooms and bathrooms, while men are more likely to pick in cars or anywhere at all.
Several respondents say they pick their noses in bed before going to sleep, and one undoubtedly large-boogered woman explains that she has trouble breathing if she doesn’t. A polite but troubled 26 year-old man who seeks privacy when picking writes, “Sometimes, in the presence of others, the feeling in my nose makes me wonder whether I have picked in public.” A 35 year-old male musician explains that he picks his nose “when pretty girls aren’t looking.” Meanwhile, with refreshingly pure consumerist zeal, a mother of two writes, “I pick my nose in the bathroom–my brand of toilet paper is softer than most Kleenex.” 4% of the sample claim they don’t pick their noses at all.
Excerpt: Vomit: People, Places, and Puking (Survey)
What was the most embarrassing place you ever threw up?
8% answer that they have never thrown up anyplace embarrassing, or, as a 35-year-old musician expresses it, have always “made it to Mr. Porcelain.” A 24-year-old writes, “I have never been embarrassed to throw up.” Most others have not been so lucky.
11% vomited with discomfiture in or out of cars or vans, including a date’s car, the grandparents’ car, and a taxicab. One unfortunate threw up in his own car, all over himself, while driving.
8% had the humiliating experience of barfing at school, including in the lunchroom, on a plant, and outside the main (high school) building. Two threw up in math class.
Another 8% had puked at parties. One young man of 20 remembers that it happened at a party where I was trying to hook up with this beautiful girl.” A young man who describes himself as a Libra recalls, “Once, at a party, after several beers and bong loads, I suddenly got the spins and found I needed to boot. Much to my chagrin, the bathroom was locked, so I threw up on the door. Fortunately, a friend vacuumed it up for me.”
7% were most embarrassed by vomiting on others, including roommates, friends, mothers, waiters, boyfriends, and “two women on a train in Portugal.” 5% mention having thrown up on sidewalks, streets, curbs, or pavement. Another 5% puked on or out of buses and trains or on train platforms. One of these would up clearing an entire subway car as a result.
4% mention having thrown up on themselves or their own clothes, including a lawyer who threw up on his own shorts when sitting on the toilet. 3% recall throwing up in parking lots and garages. Another 3% recall yakking in restaurants, including “Two feet short of the sink at Cantor’s [Los Angeles Delicatessan],” and another 3% lost it on airplanes, including a small six-seat airplane containing several people known to the victim.
Like previous RE/Search volumes (Incredibly Strange Music and Incredibly Strange Films, for instance), the book is both entertaining and informative. There is really no other place to find information on excreta in medicine and a biography of Thomas Crapper under the same cover with data from surveys of various personal excretory habits and a brief life of Joseph Pujol, the ‘Fartiste.'”
This is an important work that shouldn’t be ignored, packed with fascinating facts on excreta.”
. . .a fitting edition to the RE/Search catalog . . . “
—The American Music Press