2012.05.30 In one hole, out the other

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

It’s time for me to be sick again. It happens every spring, I’m sure of it. It happens year after year, but usually in June. The weather was different this year and I think it came on earlier.

It must be allergy related. When the cottonwood seeds blow or when the roses bloom or the plantain flowers are emitting pollen—something kicks off a reaction in my body and I get what seems like a regular cold. Sore throat, cough, sneezing, runny nose, sore body and great fatigue.

My wife has another theory: spider bites. That’s just wacky. I think she described it as a long-held suspicion. I have a large, itchy welt on the back of my neck which gives credence to her theory.

I need to do some record-keeping, to  keep track of what’s blooming (or crawling on my neck) from year to year and try to track this thing down.

I had an unpleasant night last night as I went from sick to really sick. Just general miserableness along with a fever.

When I got up this morning with aching sinuses, my thoughts turned to our neti pot. I suppose I should say “my” neti pot. I think it was a birthday gift from Colleen many years ago and not once have I used it. She’s prodded me many times, but I’ve never taken the plunge.

A neti pot is a little ceramic container with a long spout. It looks like an odd gravy boat and I remember suggesting that we use it for gravy last Thanksgiving.

Since I never used my neti, I’ve only imagined what the process is like. I know it involves salt water and I know the long, thin neck of the pot is inserted into a nostril. Beyond that I figured it must be something akin to waterboarding. I don’t like the concept of water up my nose.

Wikipedia has a couple of extensive writings about nasal irrigation and about the neti pot, in particular. The neti page includes an interesting drawing of sutra neti—an advanced nasal cleaning in which wet string is inserted into the nose and then down into the mouth. The practitioner pulls the string in and out, in and out to get things clean. “Sensations of gagging, nausea and weakness may occur.” That’s a good warning, enough to keep string out of my nose forever.

Jali neti, which is what my neti pot would involve, requires salt water to be poured into one nostril and then drained out the other. A more advanced technique is to sniff in the water and have it drain into the mouth, and an even more advanced stage is to drink in the water and snort it out the nose.

I was in sufficient misery to think about finally making Colleen happy by putting “the ancient Hindu practice” into practice.

I asked Mr. Google how to use one and I was presented with a variety of videos. First I watched a young woman insert the neck of the pot into one nostril and lean forward. The water streamed out her other nostril. It looked simple and painless; nothing like what I imagined. 

Next I watched a boy do the job with a regular plastic funnel. In one nostril, out the other. After that I chose the video titled “Three-year-old girl uses neti pot.”

That was enough. If a three-year-old can do it alone without the help of her mother, I knew I could handle this.

I went to our kitchen window where the neti pot is on display for some reason. Just an odd knickknack, I guess. My first step—not mentioned in any of the videos—was to wash out the dead insects that had collected while it was up on the windowsill.

I added warm water, I mixed in the salt, I stuck it up my nose and bent over and tilted my head. It’s not supposed to hurt, but it did. It just wasn’t a comfortable feeling at all. Maybe my sinuses were too packed with stuff.

Finally some water began running out the other nostril and after a while I switched and did the other side. I didn’t feel much relief and I kept thinking about that three-year-old. When her mother asked her if she felt better, a big smile came over her face and she said, “Yes!”

Wikipedia tells me that the use of tap water could lead to a rare but fatal brain infection. That’s probably a ridiculous warning, but it gives me something to think about as my spring affliction subsides.

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.pokemon
    LATEST CRAZE—David Cortes (left) and Ty Kruse, along with Jerred Heselschwerdt (standing), consult their smartphones while engaging in the game of Pokémon Go. The virtual scavenger hunt comes to life when players are in the vicinity of gyms, such as Stair District Library, and PokéStops such as the fire station across the street. The boys had spent time Monday morning searching for Pokémon at Wakefield Park.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Girls.on.ride
    NADIYA YORK and Aniston Valentine take a spin on the Casino, one of the rides offered at Wakefield Park during Morenci’s Town and Country Festival. This year’s festival remained dry but with plenty of heat during the three-day run. Additional photographs are inside this week’s Observer.
  • Front.softball
    Angela Davis (2) and teammate Allison VanBrandt break into a jig after Morenci's softball team won its third consecutive regional title.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.

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