Monday, August 22, 2022


My apartment mate sometimes indulges in strange fascinations. For a while she was obsessively watching earwax videos, after which it was pimples and eruptive lesions or something. Recently after a long speculative discourse on earwax and sebum, she asked whether the minor cyst on my upper back which she knows about from several years ago needed squeezing. Had it grown large enough again that it itched? When I told her that no that wasn't necessary, I had already dealt with it recently, she scoffed. Surely I couldn't reach it! Well, I can. I am more flexible than you think. Hmmph, my squeezing wasn't as good as hers anyway! After many years it isn't as "generous", sorry.

For some people sebaceous cysts are a pain in the ass.
For her, they're "entertainment".
Must be something deep-rooted in her childhood. Which leads me to believe that growing up Chinatown must be in some ways unique and educational. Sensitive white people would be traumatized, the dears. Hardier stock takes things in stride, and relishes the colourful and complicated facets. I've seen, in movies, younger persons pummeling the backs of elderly grannies and uncles to relieve their rheumatism, and in the old days minor therapeutic stuff often needed performing at home, if old Chinese tales are to be believed. Plus there's moxibustion (艾灸), cupping (拔罐), and stew pots with tonic herbs.
And, in a few rare cases, medicinal frogs for soup.
Or a black goat leg in the freezer.

Things were "odd" in the olden days. My own mother, of solid Calvinist ancestry, so spotless European heritage, firmly believed that there was absolutely NO nutritional value to sausage, mushrooms, chilipeppers, and anything cooked by the Dutch. We lived in Holland for several years after moving there when I was two, and she didn't trust the local notions about food. Despite her own father being a doctor, some of her ideas were, um, off.

Some swamps don't need draining.
Exorcism, perhaps.

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