The Family (Or most of them)

The Family (Or most of them)
The Family

June 1, 2006

Ear today, gone tomorrow

Waxing poetic about Ear Wax

While I contemplate other more serious topics for discussion, I thought I'd write about a rather unusual, partly painful, frustrating experience I had this week, for the second time in about five months.

I had to have a compacted accumulation of ear wax removed from both of my ears.

You have to understand...this is funny, but it's not. The procedure for removing the wax is certainly strange and funny. The inability to hear out of one ear for the days leading up to said procedure is frustrating.

Here are some facts:

Wax is produced naturally within the ear as a protective mechanism to keep dust particles and other foreign substances out. The ear canal and the ear drum and other mechanisms inside are very fragile.

Some people produce more wax than others. And the wax is supposed to naturally dissipate and/or come out of the ear on its own. But in many people, this doesn't always happen and it can accumulate.

The worst thing to do when it does accumulate -- DOH! -- is to stick things like cotton swabs inside the ear canal to remove wax. All that does is compact it further inside the ear, which is what happened to me.

By early in the week, I could not hear out of my right ear. I put mineral oil inside it to soften up the wax, but because I had compacted it with the cotton swabs (Q Tips), it would not come out.

When I got into my doctor, who I have been to before to clear them out, he laughed. He motioned to me to get up on the table/chair and brought out the giant syringe used to jet warm water inside the canals to dislodge the wax.

The water and the ugly dark brown compacted wax comes out and lands in a plastic container I'm holding next to my ear. Now, I'm literally free and clear and will be mindful of putting drops of mineral oil in my ear every couple of weeks henceforth.

This brings to mind two things: how we take things like seeing and hearing and speaking and touching so for granted until we can't do those things, and how debilitated we feel.

And secondly, I wonder how much wax has accumulated in more famous ears than mine, such as George W. Bush's and other world leaders.


  1. Ha ha! Yes, I'd been struggling for an explanation for the "firm, unwavering, unflinching" constancy of the administration's conduct in relation to the wider world even faced with the consequences of its repeated blunders. Even though they're "workin' hard," they seem less capable of learning from experience than B F Skinner's pigeons.

    It's that they can't hear anything!!!

    Thank you!

  2. Thanks for this, Darius. We Canucks don't mean to be disrespectful of America. It's a love/hate thing and we appreciate and respect your greatness. But when your Big Guy Bush keeps tripping over his tongue, well, we can't help but notice.

    Being the little mouse in the shadow of the huge elephant, we kinda almost feel like we're part of you, and we realize you could squish us in a nano-second.

    Still, we love you.

    Thanks for dropping in.

  3. I wrote this wonderfully witty comment and then blogger burped and swallowed it whole.


  4. We're all waiting with baited breath, Pamela, for you to regurgitate...

  5. Howling - absolutely howling - with laughter at the dear and utter human-ness of this post! And this is with each repeat visit I've made to see if the reaction changes. I'm not sure what that says about me, but it does say you are delightful. 'Taint everyone who can deliver a perfectly on target political zinger in such a common place occurance. Thank you for the laughter. Delightedly yours - Lady

  6. I no longer do that sort of thing. I swear it was just a phase.

    As if I were capable of actually remembering what it was that I wrote. Ha.

  7. eeeewwwww GROSS!

    Hey Karate Kid, Wax on..wax off..wax on..wax off.

    Like a candle in the wind, never knowing how to clean them, when the dust gets in.

    I'm hearing what your saying, but thank god you didn't just visit your proctologist!

  8. To Lady Wordsmith...

    Thanks so much, glad you found it howl-worthy...wait until I figure out how to do the post on my rogue white rhinoceros-horn eyebrow hair.

    It has a mind of its own so I only cut it, will never pluck it so as to drain it of all life. And I'm sure we could come up with some politically-charged parallels with Dubya in that too...


    What, regurgitating was just a phase? Well, as I recall, your kids are all growed up so your regurgitating days are long past.

    You're write, righters can never remember what they rote, they can only reright it again in a different way. Such is the life of originators.

    Homo Escapeons:

    As usual, bright, biting and...well, let me think on that proctologist joke a bit...


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