It's not about the house.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Stuck? Stuck. Stuck!

The lesson we learned from our whopping response last week was: avoid the morbid questions. (And also: HPH is funny!) Okay, got it. No make-you-puke questions and no make-you-think-about-your-own-death ones, either. Roger that.

Now, let's skip the preliminaries this week and just dive on into this Kierkegaardian conundrum, shall we?

Welcome to Would You Rather Wednesday!!!!!

Blah blah blah rules and stuff.

Ready? Gather round!

The category is Pain/Fear/Discomfort (not the throw-up kind, I swear), and the question is: Would you rather...

Run barefoot in the snow for 15 minutes -- OR -- stick your tongue to a frozen flagpole?

Now here's the thing: I wouldn't want to run for fifteen minutes, period, never mind the temperature or the status of my footwear. As I said to (psycho) Gerry the other day when I found out that he (nutsily) runs the Boston (insane) Marathon: I don't run unless somebody's chasing me, and even then they better have a pretty damn big knife. And I do mean knife. There's no sense running from a gun, because a person doesn't have to be able to catch you in order to be able to shoot you, but it's pretty hard to get stabbed at from across the room. Unless the stabber has good aim. And the stabee has bad reflexes.


If we take that little bit of painful, frightening discomfort out of the equation -- if we say, instead, would I rather lick a flagpole or lie down in the snow for fifteen minutes? Well, then, that's a whole other kettle of soup.

I can lie in the snow. Don't think I can't. I ran away once when I was something like seven years old, and I lay in the snow in the front yard for hours waiting for somebody to notice I was gone. They never did, or maybe they did and they just didn't care, or maybe they did and thought it served me right for pouting. At any rate, I eventually gave up and came inside on my own. I'm lucky I did, too. I'm lucky I did not get frostbite out there! Unless, well, maybe it wasn't really hours after all. Unless maybe it was more like roughly the length of a commercial break in an episode of The Muppet Show. But still. It was scary. I think Sean Penn should make a movie about that.

As far as licking flagpoles goes, though, I've never done it. I did used to lick the freezer -- the little metal strip that keeps things from falling off the door. Oh, and the ice cube trays. Remember the old metal ice cube trays -- god, it makes my spine hurt just to think about them -- where you had to lift the metal arm to knock the cubes out, and it would make that awful, squeaky, squealy, screechy, snap? Seriously, I think one of my teeth just shattered like a wine glass at the sense-memory of the sound. In fact, if the question were "What is the best invention of the last thirty years?," the answer would have to be "Screw the internets, man! Plastic ice trays!"

But that is not the question, is it? No. The question, if you remember, had something to do with licking frozen things. And I did used to sometimes run my tongue along those ice cube trays just to feel the sense of panic when it stuck. It was a wee tiny cold rush of adrenaline -- like a little kiddy popper -- because it would stick fast, and fast, but it would only take about a minute to thaw off. Over the course of these random minutes here and there, I formulated a theory that if you brought a jug of warm water out there with you, you could probably pour it down over the frozen flagpole to free your tongue. But I never had the jugs to test it out.

What I'm trying to say is: I don't want to run for fifteen minutes -- and yes, you did hear a whine and a foot stamp in those italics -- but I don't want to spend the rest of my life having to fish my tongue out of my pocket every time I need to lick a stamp or something, either.

So I guess (sigh) that I would run.

Now who's going to volunteer to chase me with a knife?


Deb on the Rocks said...

Not me, I don't run, unless I'm being chased by an animal with teeth and a knife.

su said...

I'm with you but for very different reasons.. I would just love to be able to run for 15 minutes shoes or no shoes snow or no snow. Now this is not to say I could but the question is would you rather.. Hell hands down I would rather be able to run for 15 minutes.

Chris said...

I'm gonna go with running for 15 minutes because I would hate to have a bandage on my tongue and look like Flick did after Schwartz triple dog dared him to stick his tongue to the flag pole.
I get shivers thinking about how much that would hurt, Ouch...

LadyCiani said...

Never lived where it snows, so the flagpole thing is a big myth to me. Sure, you all say it could happen, but I dunno ...

That being said, I think I could run barefoot for 15 minutes, as long as the time I spent on the ground after slipping and falling counts toward the 15 minutes. Cause I've walked on snow and ice, and I fall a lot.

Side note, when splorp! and I moved we had to get our own fridge, and it didn't come with an ice maker. We had the worst time finding ice cube trays! We went to 5 different stores looking. You would think stores that sell basic (cheap) housewares would have them, but NO! Nothing at Target, K-mart, CVS, etc. Finally found them at the 99 cent store.

Athena said...

Yeah, gonna join the masses and say I'd have to run. I was traumatized by A Christmas Story, so sticking my tongue to a flagpole is not an option.

Charlie said...

Hmmm, this is a tough one. Cold feet make me have to pee, cold tongue gives me a headache. So really it comes down to humiliation versus pain. On the other hand, if you lick the pole then you are stuck to the pole, and probably your feet will freeze through your shoes! But, maybe someone will save me quickly, and ice cream headaches are intense but short, tongue meet pole!

amanda said...

I'd have to run. However, being a lazy cow I also would need someone chasing me. So, I propose this: EGE, I'll chase you in the snow with a knife for 15 minutes. If I don't catch you and stab you to a gruesome death, you can chase me next. I figure if you make it, you'll be so worn out with the past running with bare feet that I won't have to run very fast and I'll get away and hide in a tree.

EGE said...

Oh, Amanda, I could never run for 30 minutes! But if you chase me for 15, would that not count for both of us?

beardonaut said...

I barely run to catch the subway. I'm not the running type. And I'm not really the walking type either. Still, I would choose running barefoot in the snow for 15 minutes anyday over sticking my tongue to a frozen flagpole. Though "light post" or "handrail" is far more likely.

Why that choice? I live in Sweden, the Land of Cold and Suicides. I've seen enough body parts stuck to frozen surfaces to last me a lifetime. And also, I'll second su and say I'd love to be able to really run for 15 minutes.

beardonaut said...

Oh, and Charlie: How To Get Rid of Ice Cream Headache.

1. Cup your hand in front of your mouth and blow out, thus warming the inside of your mouth.
2. Press your now warmer tongue against the roof of your mouth.

There are studies that indicate that ice cream headache may occur because of constricted capillaries that terminate at the roof of your mouth.