Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Can you Ear Me ?

I've been thinking about ear wax tonight (yes, yes ... I need to get out more often).  Without even looking up exactly what it is and what it does, I think it's fairly obvious what to do with the stuff, especially when you view it through the Paleo prism:  Leave it Alone!

Kind of a no brainer if you consider it.  Our ancestors likely didn't try picking it out of their ears.  And if it blocked their hearing or affected their balance, they would've been at a major disadvantage.  I suspect it's meant to work its way out all by itself.  Likely cleaning the ear and protecting it all in the same shot.

So why do we in Western Culture like to poke little cotton sticks into our ears then?  To clean the wax out?  Well, isn't the wax itself cleaning our ears out?  Aren't we more than likely just packing or pushing the wax down, possibly setting up to make things worse?

Why do I even think about these things?  Actually, it crossed my mind because I've been taking a break from wearing ear plugs every night, which I've done for years now (silence is truly golden at night if you can get away with it).  But mulling it over, I though I'd give my ears a break.  Not only from the plugs, but also from cotton swabs and music ear buds.  I'm going to let the wax work its way out and see if my head explodes or something.  Seems strange, but looking back, I don't think there's really been a time when I've gone more than a week or two without sticking something into my ears to clean them out.  If nothing else, it should be interesting to see what it feels like.

This also got me to thinking about a couple of other 'grooming' techniques we use today that are a novelty in the scheme of things:  Nail clipping and hair cutting.  Now, I don't plan to experiment with stopping either of these, but I don't think Paleolithic people had Barber Shops or nail clippers.  Hair and nails would probably just 'wear' down from everyday use.  I'm guessing that to be the case anyway.

Well, nothing like taking my brain for a spin around the the Block of Useless Thought.  I'm off to bed ... hopefully to dream about stuff a little more interesting.

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