Gone to Pot

Spring is here in Texas, and that means it’s allergy season. The Little Blue Gem is more like the Little Greenish Yellow Gem now, thanks to an influx of oak pollen.

I’ve felt lethargic and loopy the last couple weeks, and it seems that none of my usual medicines work. So I’ve resorted to my neti pot, and it’s turning into my best friend.

I started a garden last Sunday, and between the dirt and the pollen I wound up doing not one but three neti pots. Call me an addict.

If you haven’t heard of a neti pot, it’s looks like a little teapot that you put in your nostril. You pour a saline solution through one nostril, and it flows out of the other nostril. This may not sound very tempting, but once you get used to it, it’s not so bad. When used properly, it completely flushes out your sinuses (the process is also known as saline nasal irrigation).

I look completely ridiculous doing it, of course. But that’s part of the whole experience: you let your face and your mind go as your sinus passage gets cleaned and renewed. It’s like Pinesol for the soul (except I don’t recommend putting Pinesol up your nose).

It’s a little weird and scary at first, but if you suffer from allergies, I highly recommend it. I’m not sure I could function this time of year without mine.

If you’re interested, here’s a video showing the process.

When No One is Listening

Today I caught myself singing Hanson in my car. Old school Hanson. They weren’t on the radio or on my iPod. Without any prompting, I felt the urge to belt out “Man From Milwaukee” in the private safety of The Little Blue Gem. (There’s nothing safe or private about the Blogosphere, though, so I guess the secret is out now.)

Patrick and I had an interesting discussion the other day about the way the music you once loved can never really leave your system. If you really, really LOVE a song or an artist, you’ll always love it. I can’t think of a song that I used to like in my younger days that doesn’t still strike a chord in me when I hear it today.

Music is nostalgic. It is visceral. It conjures up memories. It makes you dance like Snoopy. When you love something, it never really leaves you, even if you feel ashamed about ever having loved it in the first place. Am I embarrassed that as a 13-year-old I sobbed like a baby when my VHS tape of Hanson clips got taped over? A little. But Middle of Nowhere got me through my awkward middle school years, and I’ll always hold a special place in my heart for those three blonde brothers.