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#1 Jonesy

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Posted January 04 2012 - 12:34 PM

the term booger eaters gets thrown around a lot in here. Usually it's for the Bush voting block of liberals in fly over country and the fetid swamps below the mason-dixon line who fancy themselves conservatives. Turns out there may be a biological reason why they eat their own boogers. just some trivia for the PG:



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Contact us • FAQ • Policies What is snot? And why do some people eat it?
By Maggie Koerth-Baker at 11:56 am Friday, Dec 23



The Stranger's "Ask Science" column offers a detailed explanation of just what, exactly, boogers are. It is simultaneously gross and mesmerizing:

Mucus, chemically, is quite fascinating. Sugar chains are attached to a protein backbone in mucus cells, with the contraption released out into the open. These glycoprotein molecules rapidly and aggressively suck up water until they are plump, slick, and slimy. To an invader, this is a nightmare to navigate: tangled chains of protein and sugar, with every nook and cranny crammed with water molecules. (Boogers are when these chains become ever more tangled, finally resulting in a rubbery ball of partially dried-out snot. Neat!) The body adds antimicrobial enzymes to this mix, which digest the invading organisms as they slowly attempt to chew through this barrier and reach the thin underlying lining of cells.

Which reminds me: Over the years, I've stumbled across some interesting discussions about whether picking your nose and/or eating boogers is a psychological or biological phenomenon. That is, when people do this, does it reflect some kind of psychological or socio-cultural issue; or is there a biological reason why booger-eating could be beneficial?

The truth is, there's not been a great deal of research done on this subject, at least from the biology angle. We know about booger-eating as a function of human behavioral development. There's been some research into it from the perspective of evolutionary psychology (i.e., why do people think this is gross?). But analysis of whether or not there is a biological reason people engage in booger eating has been lacking. Perhaps unsurprisingly. It would be interesting to see the responses you'd get if you tried to recruit volunteers for that study. Especially considering the fact that, as I think about it, you'd probably want your test subjects to eat both their own boogers, and those of other people, to see whether that had any impact on any presumed immune system response.

But I digress. If you are not totally grossed out yet, I'd recommend reading "Eating Snot – Socially Unacceptable but Common: Why?", a chapter in the book Consuming the Inedible: Neglected Dimensions of Food Choice. You can read most of that chapter on Google Books. Author Maria Jesus Portalatin focuses mainly on the better documented socio-cultural implications, but gets into a bit of the biology. One thing she points out, nasal mucus is about 95% water, so there's a possibility that you might expect more mucus eating in arid places. But nobody has ever done the studies necessary to test that hypothesis out. Her main hypothesis—also untested—is that eating mucus might help prime the body's immune system, allowing it to have more contact with weakened forms of potential pathogens so it can better detect and destroy those pathogens later. In other words, she thinks that eating your boogers is sort of like self-immunization.



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#2 SallyGrowler

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Posted January 04 2012 - 12:38 PM

:facepalm: ^^^


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#3 Roadrunner

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Posted January 04 2012 - 12:43 PM

Oh, Jonesy. Are you having another 'Deliverance' PTSD flashback? You rant against the South like you haven't had a decent bowel 'evacuation' since the 'incident'. :laugh:

All this Southern vitriol from a M*******chsetts boy is real pot calling kettle black stuff. :dismay:

Truth be told, I prefer Southern booger eaters to M*******chusetts sperm slurpers. :squid:


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"I think, that all right thinking people, are sick & tired of being told that they're sick & tired of being sick & tired. I, for one, am not. And I'm sick & tired of being told that I am."

#4 fish'nmagician

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Posted January 04 2012 - 12:46 PM


^^lotta latent homesexuality in that post^^



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#5 Jonesy

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Posted January 04 2012 - 12:52 PM

^^lotta latent homesexuality in that post^^


have you ever been to CT? lotta latent homosexuality. especially concetrated between Darien out to Branford.


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#6 SallyGrowler

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Posted January 04 2012 - 12:57 PM

Goo Gobblers


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#7 Roadrunner

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:01 PM

have you ever been to CT? lotta latent homosexuality. especially concetrated between Darien out to Branford.



It would seem you'd know. First hand. :o


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"I think, that all right thinking people, are sick & tired of being told that they're sick & tired of being sick & tired. I, for one, am not. And I'm sick & tired of being told that I am."

#8 Jonesy

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:17 PM

It would seem you'd know. First hand. :o


yup. my sister lives in black rock. we go to fairfield all the time. metrosexual central! crappy fishing too. my condolences bro! ;)


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#9 Roadrunner

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:34 PM

yup. my sister lives in black rock. we go to fairfield all the time. metrosexual central! crappy fishing too. my condolences bro! ;)


A fair statement. I now refer to Fairfield as Westport East. :( I'm a skip & a jump from Black Rock. Beverly Pizza in BR is pretty dang good. :drool:

We're both spit out of luck now that Westport's Brooke Cafe's been bulldozed.:p Who knows, maybe they'll replace it with gun store. (Fat chance in Westport! :laugh: ) Check out the new railroad station on the Fairfield/Black Rock border next time you're down. They did what seems to be a fairly nice job, with some nice nature trails thrown in.

Crappy fishing is an understatement. The Fairfield/Bridgeport area is the doldrums of saltwater fishing, a spitty area located between the Stratford/Milford Housatonic River basin, which is worlds better, and the Norwalk Islands, which are even better. It sucks here, although you'd never know it the way P9915 used to spin the web of fishing lies! :laugh: Even those folks with boats use them to fish somewhere else! :D


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"I think, that all right thinking people, are sick & tired of being told that they're sick & tired of being sick & tired. I, for one, am not. And I'm sick & tired of being told that I am."

#10 Knight771

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:39 PM

Oh, Jonesy. Are you having another 'Deliverance' PTSD flashback? You rant against the South like you haven't had a decent bowel 'evacuation' since the 'incident'. :laugh:
All this Southern vitriol from a M*******chsetts boy is real pot calling kettle black stuff. :dismay:
Truth be told, I prefer Southern booger eaters to M*******chusetts sperm slurpers. :squid:


Roadrunner,

The NE limp wrists are always looking down on others. "The dilettantes with their open minds." Jonesy is always channeling Teddy and BTW, he is the only one I know who uses the words "booger eaters." Since Teddy is gone, he's now kissing up to John "Do You Know Who I AM? Kerry. Often you can find him in the basement where he participates in circle jerks with like minded "true conservatives."


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#11 Knight771

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:41 PM

A fair statement. I now refer to Fairfield as Westport East. :( I'm a skip & a jump from Black Rock. Beverly Pizza in BR is pretty dang good. :drool:
We're both spit out of luck now that Westport's Brooke Cafe's been bulldozed.:p Who knows, maybe they'll replace it with gun store. (Fat chance in Westport! :laugh: ) Check out the new railroad station on the Fairfield/Black Rock border next time you're down. They did what seems to be a fairly nice job, with some nice nature trails thrown in.
Crappy fishing is an understatement. The Fairfield/Bridgeport area is the doldrums of saltwater fishing, a spitty area located between the Stratford/Milford Housatonic River basin, which is worlds better, and the Norwalk Islands, which are even better. It sucks here, although you'd never know it the way P9915 used to spin the web of fishing lies! :laugh: Even those folks with boats use them to fish somewhere else! :D


Really, really good striper fishing at the mouth of the Connecticutt River. Got to get back there. :)


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#12 RJ

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:51 PM

Roadrunner,
The NE limp wrists are always looking down on others. "The dilettantes with their open minds." Jonesy is always channeling Teddy and BTW, he is the only one I know who uses the words "booger eaters." Since Teddy is gone, he's now kissing up to John "Do You Know Who I AM? Kerry. Often you can find him in the basement where he participates in circle jerks with like minded "true conservatives."


Thank you both. Roadrunner and Knight 771. You covered my Impression the the Jones Boy had an bad batch of crystal meth and woke up inside a Stienbeck Novel sequel to the Grape's of Wriath!.

He is getting creeper all the time. And the "Booger Eater's" appealation is a new expression to me. Some how I don't feel that I've been enlightened by its reference.

Disgusting visual. Makes me want to wash my hands. :D


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#13 Roadrunner

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Posted January 04 2012 - 1:58 PM

Really, really good striper fishing at the mouth of the Connecticutt River. Got to get back there. :)


Yep. But the drive is farther than I like to deal with, especially on the nightmare that is I-95. When fishing becomes work, it is no longer play. If I'm going to drive, I drive up to the Saugatuck Reservoir, and fish sweetwater for Browns, Walleyes, and Bass, and enjoy the restful bucolic nature of the place. An oasis in a suburban desert. It reminds me of my beloved Adirondacks. Saltwater wise, I've got a couple of local honey holes where I can go to catch schoolie Stripers on light tackle. That's a ton of fun. Big Stripers are hard, and are few & far between.

In all fairness to Mr. Jones, if memory serves, not once did he jump in to defend Massachusetts favorite unrepentant reprobate, the Right Dishonorable Senator John 'I'm a War Hero' Kerry. So you've got to give him his props for that. :clap:


Mr. Jones and I have just had a nice exchange, and I do believe we may be at a truce, if not peace. I think I'll leave it go at that. ;)


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"I think, that all right thinking people, are sick & tired of being told that they're sick & tired of being sick & tired. I, for one, am not. And I'm sick & tired of being told that I am."

#14 Jonesy

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Posted January 04 2012 - 2:00 PM

A fair statement. I now refer to Fairfield as Westport East. :( I'm a skip & a jump from Black Rock. Beverly Pizza in BR is pretty dang good. :drool:
We're both spit out of luck now that Westport's Brooke Cafe's been bulldozed.:p Who knows, maybe they'll replace it with gun store. (Fat chance in Westport! :laugh: ) Check out the new railroad station on the Fairfield/Black Rock border next time you're down. They did what seems to be a fairly nice job, with some nice nature trails thrown in.
Crappy fishing is an understatement. The Fairfield/Bridgeport area is the doldrums of saltwater fishing, a spitty area located between the Stratford/Milford Housatonic River basin, which is worlds better, and the Norwalk Islands, which are even better. It sucks here, although you'd never know it the way P9915 used to spin the web of fishing lies! :laugh: Even those folks with boats use them to fish somewhere else! :D


beverly pizza eh? we'll check it out next time. although we usually stop in new haven for pepe's or the other place on the way down. thanks!


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#15 Knight771

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Posted January 04 2012 - 2:01 PM

Yep. But the drive is farther than I like to deal with, especially on the nightmare that is I-95. When fishing becomes work, it is no longer play. If I'm going to drive, I drive up to the Saugatuck Reservoir, and fish sweetwater for Browns, Walleyes, and Bass, and enjoy the restful bucolic nature of the place. An oasis in a suburban desert. It reminds me of my beloved Adirondacks. Saltwater wise, I've got a couple of local honey holes where I can go to catch schoolie Stripers on light tackle. That's a ton of fun. Big Stripers are hard, and are few & far between.
In all fairness to Mr. Jones, if memory serves, not once did he jump in to defend Massachusetts favorite unrepentant reprobate, the Right Dishonorable Senator John 'I'm a War Hero' Kerry. So you've got to give him his props for that. :clap:
Mr. Jones and I have just had a nice exchange, and I do believe we may be at a truce, if not peace. I think I'll leave it go at that. ;)


RR,

I've had truces will all of the true conservatives at one time or another. Sometimes many truces. But it always goes bad. They just can't help themselves.:)


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