It seems like every kid is just wired from birth to pick their boogers and eat them. C’mon. At least once! But probably about a hundred times more than once.
The fact that we adults have “all done it,” doesn’t really prepare us for actually watching our kid cramming a finger up his/her nose, itching their brain as they try to get at a booger. And sadly, all the shouting and waving parents do never seems to stop the little miners from depositing it immediately in their mouths. But strangely, most parents trying to remove a kid’s booger soon find themselves reenacting an episode of COPS entitled Most Violently Resisted Arrests.
Anyways. Lizzie and I recently saw a newborn hanging like a koala off a dad’s shoulder. Just as Lizzie started awwwwing, the munchkin buried a tiny finger to the hilt in his teeny nose hole. Her “aww” kinda fizzled out as we stared. True to form, he unplugged and popped it right into his mouth. We were both too impressed to be grossed out. We both knew that this baby was so young that we were probably in the presence of the Mozart of nose picking.
Chow Time Phase
We tell ourselves that it’s just a phase, our kid’s booger eating. By the way, this concept of phases is basically the last shred of hope we parents cling to about anything we hope our kid will stop doing but haven’t a blasted clue about how to stop ourselves.
Unfortunately, when a kid graduates past the chow time phase, this basic urge to nose pick moves on to other phases. They’re not always much better.
Dig & Flick Phase
Something on my car window? You learn quick that: outside = unlucky bug, inside = booger. Once you get them to stop supplementing their diet with the things, they’re doing all kinds of awful things with them. Boogers quickly go from food to ammunition.
The Collector Phase
This may be the least common, but is by far the most feared. Every once in a while you’ll come across a booger collection. Lizzie’s cousin was a collector. He had what he called his “booger wall.” Let’s move on. Quickly. Now! RUN!!!
As wired as people seem to be about shamelessly picking their boogers when they’re kids, they seem just as wired to be embarrassed about doing it when they are adults.
“Oh my poor nostrils. Oooh my poor aching nostrils.”
“Why hello there! This doesn’t bother you, does it?”
We still do it, of course, the picking at least (hopefully not the eating), but we dress it up or camouflage it. Instead of sending a stiffened pointer finger up our blowhole like a rocket to the moon, we throw in a thumb and do a lot of “rubbing.” Then it can almost look like an itch or nostril massage to any accidental observers, right?
We wrap our finger in a wispy tissue or handkerchief and then we can tunnel away at our noses completely carefree. Does that really make a difference though? I demonstrated this point to my wife. I grabbed a tissue, wrapped my finger and went all Journey To The Center Of The Earth. Then I took it off and did it again for comparison. This all took place in a restaurant so, while she got my point, she wasn’t thrilled.
We go through many phases as babies/kids/teens/adults/elders, but remember, for as long as you’re alive, there’s always another phase after the one you’re in.
Psst! Hey… Did any one buy that psuedo philosophic finish to a post about booger eating?