My blanket smells like belly button, my coffee reeks like skunk butt, and my pocket smells like 100-year-old phlegm.

It’s one of those days where I seriously contemplate gender reassignment.  Let’s face it–having a uterus and a pair of ovaries can be a pain in the ass.  Especially when they render you a hemorrhagic, cramped-over, anemic mess every 21 days.  Thankfully, I don’t get bitchy.  Whiny, yes.  Bitchy, no.

I fear a sex-change will leave me looking like this.

Knowing my luck, a sex-change would transform me into this.  No offense, Nathan Lane.

I, therefore, apologize in advance for what will likely be a less-coherent than usual (and that’s saying something) post that may or may not contain a number of period-induced expletives.  For any of my faithful male readers who have not yet ran away from the computer screaming, I say, “thank you.”  If women must endure bleeding profusely from the crotch in order to ensure that the human race continues to thrive, the least the men can do is listen to us vent about it.  I bet you’re glad you’re not my hubby right now.  Hehe.


A few things have struck me as particularly strange this week.  First of all, the English language is a very peculiar thing–particularly if you only hear it spoken.  For instance, a naval graveyard can sound like a place where dead bellybuttons go.  Knotty pine sounds like very ill-behaved trees.  “She’s got a big pair,” could make someone think she has an over-sized fruit.  And who hasn’t partaken in the occasional “it’s not/it’s snot” joke?  Seriously.  ESL must be a nightmare.

Ack.  A blanket that smells like a belly button.

Ack. A blanket that smells like a belly button.

Plus, what’s with the saying, “it sells like hotcakes?”  Do hotcakes really sell a lot?  In Canada, we call them pancakes, and they do not sell at all.  We don’t have IHOP, but we did have a few wannabes.  Golden Griddle?  Defunct.  Smitty’s Pancake House?  Gone with the wind.  Don’t get me wrong.  Canadians like pancakes.  We just don’t seem to like to pay for them.  I think we should coin our own phrase–“it sells like Tim Hortons‘ coffee.”  Even though I still say that Tim Hortons’ coffee smells like roadkill skunk.  But maybe I am just developing a giant nose tumour.

For the first time in my life, colour me speechless.

For the first time in my life, colour me speechless.

1)  I consider myself to be somewhat of a collector–PEZ, model cars, pop culture memorabilia–but some “collectors” really should keep their collections hidden away.  Australian librarian, Graham Barker, is one of those people.  For the past 26 years, he has mined his belly button for lint; eagerly retrieved his lode, and stored it in dated jars.

Why?  No seriously.  This is not a rhetorical question.

Admittedly, he has garnered himself a mention in the Guinness Book of World Records, achieving a moment of fame.  But do you want to go down in history as the man that not only spent 26 years of his life navel-gazing, but digging around in there too?

Having amassed 22.1 grams of belly button fibre, I must wonder if there is anything left of his sweaters?  And I don’t even want to know what sort of putrid odour wafts from these jars when he unscrews the lids?  Ack.  Just puked in my mouth again.  After 7 months of blogging, you think I’d get used to this.

bellybutton lint

Now, just for shits and giggles, check out the adoring and gleeful manner in which his eyes behold his beloved collection.  This is a man who clearly loves his belly button and the gifts it sprouts.

Holy crap.  They smell the same to me.  Am I dying?

Holy crap. They smell the same to me. Am I dying?

2) It turns out I do not have an impaired olfactory lobe.  Nor do I have a nose tumour.  In fact, I may simply have a more finely tuned sniffer than the rest of you.

According to  David Rowe, smell-expert and author of Chemistry and Technology of Flavors and Fragrances, coffee and skunk juice do share an important aroma-causing compound.  Coffee contains furfuryl mercaptan, a chemical that is in the same family as butyl mercaptan–the chemical that gives a skunk squirt its musky (a.k.a. nauseating) smell.

This skunkiness is exacerbated during the creation of decaf.  Apparently the caffeine-removal process also removes much of this chemical, so companies must add it back in to make the product smell more enticing.  If they add too much, the result is a cup of java that reeks of skunk butt.

It’s not all in my head.  Or my nose.

If you knew what it was, you probably wouldn't hold it with your bare hands.

If you knew what it was, you probably wouldn’t hold it with your bare hands.

3)  So my quest to have Barry Weiss find my blog is still under way.  And I just happen to have a Barry-related tidbit that fits in with today’s rant.  Imagine that?

A while back, Storage Wars‘ (and all of television’s, for that matter), most lovable character came across an item that resembled a metal flask with a strange little door on the side.  He and his doting audience were enthralled.  Whatever could this strange device be?

Turns out it is a century-old, portable cuspidor–more commonly known as a spittoon.  Yes.  This is a vessel filled with the relics of old phlegm.  ACK!

While Barry initially appeared appalled by this revelation, he seemed to recover from this initial shock, pocketing the sputum-filled vessel and adding it to his personal collection.  I like to think he went home and boiled it first.

Ancient phlegm or not, he can still park his cuspidor under my Sealy Posturepedic any day of the week.

But he may want to wait for two to five days.

If you’d like to read more about Barry Weiss, his phlegm holder and more, check out my social media experiment at: Searching for Barry Weiss.

Photo Credits:  Nathan Lane  (,  menstruation (, belly button blanket (, belly button lint & man who loves it (, coffee-drinking skunk (, spittoon (

23 responses

  1. Even hormone-overload you are hilarious.
    Glad to see you are still pondering better sayings to replace “selling like hotcakes”. Someone needs to do it.
    Belly-button lint. Really? I wonder what disgusting thing I can start collecting so as to be “famous” one day.
    I’m never going to inhale deeply of my decaf again – thanks.
    I remember that episode of Storage Wars. While I may not be as enamored with Barry as you he is one of my faves. I couldn’t believe he kept that thing. UGH!

    • I know! Belly button lint! But did you look at that guy’s face? You’d think he’d found the Holy Grail. lol.

      Seriously, if Barry Weiss ever finds this blog, I’ll pee myself. haha.

      And yes, when I drive past a coffee place, I think I’ve run over a skunk. Hence, my distaste for java.

      • Um…yes….he does seem rather enamored there. I guess it takes all kinds to make the world go around. As long as I don’t have to live next to him….

        Barry will find you. He finds treasures all the time.

        I can honestly say I’ve never noticed my coffee smelling like skunk. If I notice it tomorrow I’m blaming you.

  2. I’ve never told you this but I have a serious phobia of belly buttons. I’m serious. What’s even weirder is my brother and I just found out a few years ago each other have this same phobia and have had it since kids. Anyway, I was struggling to get through this post without my stomach tossing and just when I thought you were done talking about them you throw me the belly button lint blanket and the jars full of the stuff. I’m twitching just writing this! I really wouldn’t mind if there was a naval graveyard! Also, I would like to give a shout out to Barry! Hi Barry! I know he’s bound to have found you by now!

    • So sorry to have caused you so much discomfort! How do you cope with having your own belly button? Do you put a band-aid on it and pretend it isn’t there? Just wondering.

      As much as I would like to believe that Barry has found my little corner of the blogging universe, The Embiggens Project STILL doesn’t come up when I google his name. Ugh.

      • I do somehow manage to make it through the day just pretending it’s not there! The serious problem came in when I had kids. First came the anxiety that I might be one of those moms where the belly button pops out. I told my doctor about this and she laughed. She said not one woman has ever brought up this concern. Secondly, when you have a baby they cut the umbilical cord and it leaves a little stump that has to dry up and fall off. This seriously grossed me out! If that wasn’t bad enough, I looked down at my newborn daughter when she was two weeks old and lo and behold…the stump had fallen off. I couldn’t find it. It seriously almost put me over the edge that a belly button stump was floating around our house somewhere!!

      • OMG! That is too funny! Maybe the stump is still lurking in a nook or cranny.

        (Did you ever notice how we like to tease other people about their phobias, but heaven forbid, if there was a clown hiding in my house somewhere, I’d have to move!)

  3. OMG “he can still park his cuspidor under my Sealy Posturepedic.” I think that a nobel prize is in order here. Never have ADD spirals been so enjoyable since your blog. And after the sanitary napkin aisle, your blog is the first place that I go to when bleeding profusely from my crotch. We should team up and create a blog solely dedicated to period snaffus- “Menstrual Mishaps”, “Bloody Dunders”…you get it. Great post!

    • I love that you just described me as having ADD spirals! I think I’ll use that description in the future–if I can concentrate long enough, that is. lol.
      I think a blog about the monthly transformation of our furry funbags into oozing cesspools would be amazing! A whiny owner manual of sorts.

  4. 1) No, Master! I don’t want want you to become a man! How else will you and I exchange boob stories (on what, I now realize, is a very public platform).

    2) I hear a lot about mood swings related to PMS. But I never have any. Or perhaps I never notice because I’m permanently insane. Either ways, seems like I’m the only woman missing out on PMS. I’m not complaining about it, though.

    3) ‘the English language is a very peculiar thing’? Trust me, I know. *Stalks off muttering under her breathe in Hindi*

    4) Well, we have neither pancakes, nor hotcakes. But we do have dosas and aloo parathas. *drool*

    5) Naval fluff collectors? Ew; and I thought my dad was disgusting for not trimming his ear-hair often enough.

    6) Thank you for the information, master. I am so glad that I do not drink coffee.

    7) Perhaps I should write Barry an email and suggest that he read this blog before his time is up?

    • 1) My urge to have gender reassignment has now passed. I may reconsider it roughly 21 days from now.
      2) I don’t know what I’d do if I had to endure mood swings on top of the other discomforts. And, no, you are not completely insane!
      4) I really need to immerse myself in some Indian culture. It sounds so yummy.
      5) I know. Who in the heck says, “oh. That’s a handsome piece of bellybutton lint. I think I’ll keep that one for the next 26 YEARS?”
      6) Coffee makes me rangy.
      7) In Barry’s defense, this blog still doesn’t come up when I Google his name. I’ll have to keep trying. Ugh.

  5. BAHAHAHAHA! I feel yam, girl! Just for once I would like those smelly boys to live a month in our shoes. Our fabulous yet crampy and bloated and PMSy shoes. You know what I have always wondered? Where the expressions “Healthy as a horse” and “Sick as a dog” comes from. I mean, are horses really all that more vigilant against the common cold? I don’t think I have ever really seen my dog get sick? What gives? Silly English language…

  6. Pingback: Barry Weiss find a phlegm holder | Searching For Barry Weiss

  7. Pingback: I’ve got mushrooms in my ears, a flowery bag of vomit, and a Cheap Trick album. | The Embiggens Project

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