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Earwax

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gibberingfool
80085.  Mon Jul 17, 2006 11:45 am Reply with quote

Earwax's official medical name is cerumen. It assists in cleaning and lubrication, and provides some protection from bacteria, fungus, and insects.

Some interesting factoids from the wikipedia Earwax article:

- Claims arising from ear syringing mishaps account for about 25% of the total claims received by New Zealand's Accident Compensation Corporation ENT Medical Misadventure Committee.

- Many species of whale have an annual buildup of earwax, adding one, two or four layers (depending upon the species) each year. Similar to the incremental dating method of dendrochronology for trees, the number of layers can be counted to determine the age of the whale after its death.

- Two distinct genetically determined types of earwax are distinguished -- the wet-type which is dominant, and the dry type which is recessive. Asians and Native Americans are more likely to have the dry type of cerumen (grey and flaky), whereas Caucasians and Africans are more likely to have the wet type (honey-brown to dark-brown and moist). Cerumen type has been used by anthropologists to track human migratory patterns, such as those of the Inuit.

All from:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earwax

 
Jenny
80136.  Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:09 pm Reply with quote

I like that word cerumen - it has a Tolkienish sound.

 
gibberingfool
80143.  Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:22 pm Reply with quote

Having just finished watching Return of the King, I admit it does sound very Tolkienish... :p

 
Celebaelin
80145.  Mon Jul 17, 2006 6:25 pm Reply with quote

Tolkienesque surely?

The closest I can find is formed from

Quote:
kir-
'cut, cleave' in Calacirya, Cirth, Angerthas, Cirith (Ninniach, Thoronath). From the sense 'pass swiftly through' was derived Quenya cirya 'sharp-prowed ship' (cf. English cutter), and this meaning appears also in Círdan, Tar-Ciryatan, and no doubt in the name of Isildur's son Círyon.


and

Quote:
men
'way' in Númen, Hyarmen, Rómen, Formen.


alternatively there's carak- (fang or jaw) or caran (red) but I prefer my first (pseudo-) explanation.

 
gibberingfool
80154.  Mon Jul 17, 2006 7:05 pm Reply with quote

Celebaelin wrote:
Tolkienesque surely?


Potato Potahto... :p

 
Celebaelin
80165.  Mon Jul 17, 2006 10:57 pm Reply with quote

Indeed. I doubt if it's made it into the dictionary yet and perhaps never will.

*checks* Apparently it has.

http://www.jessesword.com/sf/view/1542

 
Feroluce
80507.  Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:16 am Reply with quote

gibberingfool wrote:
Medical Misadventure Committee.


OOOH! I wanna work for them!

 
Tas
80517.  Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:43 am Reply with quote

Sounds like fun. All misadventures are run by commitees. No commitee EVER get's things right!

:-)

Tas

 
Pitmonster
81141.  Sat Jul 22, 2006 9:22 am Reply with quote

Can you make candles from earwax?

 
swot
81160.  Sat Jul 22, 2006 11:01 am Reply with quote

You've seen Shrek too many times.

 
Twopints
81183.  Sat Jul 22, 2006 4:01 pm Reply with quote

On a recent episode of "Brainiac" on sky one they said that earwax and bogies are basically made of the same stuff (mucus and dead skin cells) and the reason that bogies taste salty and earwax tastes bitter is due to the fact that earwax is stale.

Not that I trust the scientific validity of any statement made on that programme, but it is good for watching large breasted ladies blowing things up.

 
swot
81267.  Sun Jul 23, 2006 11:07 am Reply with quote

Neil Hamilton in the electric chair was also highly amusing. It's Debbie McGee next time. :-D

 
gibberingfool
81307.  Sun Jul 23, 2006 2:45 pm Reply with quote

Pitmonster wrote:
Can you make candles from earwax?


Well, a man I work with used to work for Royal Mail.

There he worked with a strange bloke who used to clean his ears out each week and put the resulting earwax in a tub with a wik. After a couple of years it was about an inch high, but very thin.

He left Royal Mail before it came to the lighting of the candle, so he doesn't know if it worked (or if it was scented for that matter!!).

 
gerontius grumpus
81327.  Sun Jul 23, 2006 5:45 pm Reply with quote

Gibberingfool, I like your signature.
Several other words get annoyingly used as verbs:

Birth as in birthing stool.

Gift as in gifting.


Grrrrr...

 
gibberingfool
81332.  Sun Jul 23, 2006 7:08 pm Reply with quote

gerontius grumpus wrote:
Gibberingfool, I like your signature.
Several other words get annoyingly used as verbs:

Birth as in birthing stool.

Gift as in gifting.


Grrrrr...


I can't claim the credit for it, I'm afriad... It's Black Books all the way... ;)

 

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