Tuesday, May 31, 2011

What IS that for anyway?

This past four day weekend Bob and I took a much too long trip to Ohio to see our new (old) houseboat.  Amazingly we survived the long boring trip through Pennsylvania (did I mention boring?) with our marriage intact.  Along the way several discussions came up.
The first one was “Why do we have earlobes?”  What? I wanted to know! We bantered back and forth for at least 30 miles but still couldn’t come up with an answer.  Finally, we decided that they were put there for “Earbobs”-My final answer.  Does ANYONE know why we have earlobes, because we never could find a definitive reason? 
This question then brought along a very long chain of other questions, ranging from the ridiculous to the sublime.   Among them came the subject of the epiglottis…you know, that little punching bag thing that hangs in the back of your throat.  What IS that thing and what is it for anyway?  We never did figure this one out, so when I got back I looked it up on good ole Google.  Who would have thought that without that little flap of meat, we would choke to death.  I guess it closes off the airway when we eat and drink so we don’t inhale our nourishment instead of eating it (or drinking it).  Go figure.
Also, was the question of road kill…along the way we saw countless remains of deer in every size, shape and degree of decomposition (did I mention that in addition to being excessively monotonous and unpopulated, Western Pennsylvania also smells revoltingly like roadkill?)  This brought about the question of location.  It seemed that every carcass we encountered was left in the same exact part of the road…always to the right with just the upper part of its body either on the rumble strip or the white line.  Why????  Are they ALL hit here?  Are they thrown to this spot by oncoming tractor trailers?  How is this possible with so many speed and position variables?  Is it some mysterious creed among ungulate whereby they vow and shake their little hooves in a sacred deer oath that in order to maintain their honor, they will use their last bit of life’s energy to find the highway “sweet spot”?  Why were none of these poor animals in the road, or even on the left hand lane?  I wonder if the poor deers (get it?) stopped to get a drink from the grooves in the rumble strip and their epiglottis didn’t close and they choked to death and drowned there?  Not likely though.  Maybe it’s a practical joke among truckers?  At any rate…not funny guys!  I know, Perhaps the members of the highway department in them parts move them there in some sort of twisted hillbilly nature religion ritual?  I suppose it could be possible, but If this were the case, they could have gone that extra step and just dragged them into the countless acres of tree after tree after tree and spared us the revulsion of death’s perfume. 
…Yeah, driving that six hundred plus miles to Ohio, there were many other questions, but these are all my brain (and marriage) can handle right now.  If anyone has better answers, or answers at all, help me out here…inquiring minds want to know…
…Oh, by the way, Ohio greeted us with a rainbow just as we crossed the bridge over the Ohio River, but that doesn’t mean it’s the promise land….You can trust me on that one…

1 comment:

  1. Posted at the request of the blog author: The epiglottis is what keeps us from choking…air vs swallow. It is actually visible in Some folks but it pops UP rather than hangs down. The UVULA is the little gizmo that hangs down in the back of your throat…there for gag reflex assistance, articulation….and, sadly, snoring.
    Actually...earlobes are a vestigial structure...enjoy um while you've got um....evolution may well eliminate them a zillion years from now. You can live a quality life with perfect hearing w/o the earlobe. The Pinna is a different story.