December 17, 2004

Ooohfah, That Smell!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 9:08 pm

At one of the many Christmas, holiday, almost winter, end-of-year parties I have recently attended, I had occasion to eat some white asparagus (It could just as well have been green). Because I also had been taking in copious amounts of vodka fluids, fifteen minutes after eating the asparagus I had occasion to visit the men’s room.

It only took that long for the asparagus to work its evil magic and cause the olfactory assault commonly known as “asparagus pee.” Oooofah!!!!

So I got to thinking a bit about asparagus pee and some of the facts and theories that surround this interesting, albeit most unpleasant phenomenon. It turns out that I am not the only one who thinks about this stuff. Indeed, I found a blog that contains, as part of its title “Asparagus Pee.” That blog contains a link to a site entitled, “The Skinny on Why Asparagus Makes Your Pee Stink,” which is an excellent summary of information on other sites.

The “Skinny” discusses a good deal of brain-numbing chemistry to identify exactly which compounds the body creates when it digests asparagus that cause this major stinkola. However, most interesting was the discussion of the genetics of the matter, because not everyone produces stinky pee after eating asparagus (estimates of the numbers of stinky pissers range from about 20% to 50%). It was, therefore, thought that certain people carry a gene that creates stinky pee. However, as the “Skinny” states:

Early investigators thought genetics had divided the world into stinkers and nonstinkers. That was until 1980, when three researchers had the presence of mind to wave pee from the nonstinkers under the noses of the stinkers.
Lo and behold, the problem proved to be one not of producing the stinky pee but of being able to sniff it out.

So, it may not be the case that some of us have been cursed with a stinky pee gene, while others have not. Rather, those who claim not to create asparagus pee might well carry a gene for a shitty sense of smell.

Being a man of science in a prior life and, therefore curious and empirical, I propose a simple experiment. I hereby invite one of you who claim to be able to eat asparagus and piss lilacs to join me for an asparagus dinner and a trip to the john about a half hour later. If I can smell yours, and you can’t smell mine, we will have answered this most important question without the benefit of a million dollar government grant.

And finally, for those of you who may consider yourselves to be asparagus pee connoisseurs (There’s no accounting for taste.), here’s a place where you can buy fashion items that permit you to share your passion with the world. (This link is also via the “Asparagus Pee” blog noted above.)

I know what you’re thinking. “Yo, Jimbo, with all this talk about disgusting stuff like stinky asparagus pee, can boogers be far behind?” – to which I reply, “hmmmm.”

Update: I had forgotten to post the link to the site where one can buy Asparagus Pee tee-shirts. I have since corrected my omission. There are still seven shopping days before Christmas Holiday. Get right on it.

Missed Opportunity.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 7:43 pm

I had arranged to meet the infamous Velociman for dinner and drinks yesterday. I was stoked at the prospect of an evening of revelry with this well-spoken southern gentlemen who, after a couple Maker’s Marks, morphs into an evil, bullwhip wielding space mutant.

Unfortunately, as sometimes happens, fate intervened in the form of the death of my friend’s mother. I’ve known him and his mom for forty or so years, so attending her wake was a given.

This causes me to look forward with even greater anticipation to his next trip to the Garden State. My reasons for wanting to dine and drink with the V-Man are not entirely selfish. You see, I worry that he may need me to coach him during the Maker’s Marking process lest he run afoul of Garden State etiquette with some of the wrong folks (e.g. the pinky ring guys), which in these parts could mean a one-way ticket to a landfill.

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