4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Pee Dance, Fortune Cookies, Saltwater Heals

Dear M.A.: When I really have to pee bad, why do I do that little pee dance? I’m squeezing muscles and shifting my weight back and forth on my feet and sometimes bending over. It always seems to happen when my roommate is hogging the bathroom. I guess it gives me time to try to figure out why wiggling around would be something I’d do automatically. I didn’t make up the pee dance. It’s something my body seems to do on its own. So what’s the ­deal? — Marissa, outside the bathroom

The pee dance is sort of like a variation on the cha-cha, dontcha think? Step together, wiggle wiggle, step together, squeeze those muscles. Add a sparkly little skating costume, and you’re ready for Dancing With the Pee-ers. Doctors’ comments on the situation say, all that wiggling and clenching is displacement activity. Displacement is stuff we do to distract ourselves from an uncomfortable situation we can’t control. We gotta go, no place to go, bladders screaming, so our brains take all that stressful energy and funnel it into hopping or humming or clenching or deep breathing — anything to distract us from the real problem. Everybody does it. It’s more popular than the ­Macarena.

Sponsored
Sponsored

Matt: How long are fortune cookies valid? Does your fortune expire after a certain amount of days or upon receipt of a new fortune ­cookie? — Tim, via email

We dug around looking for a fortune-cookie expert to figure this one out for us, but nobody seems to have thought ahead like that. Does it last until you pay the bill and leave the restaurant? Until you’re hungry again after a Chinese meal? Until you figure out exactly what the heck your fortune actually means? Fortune cookies aren’t even Chinese to begin with. They’re Japanese. But when Japanese were interned in POW camps here in the U.S., Chinese restaurateurs grabbed the idea and made it their own. Apparently they didn’t know what they were taking on, though. Today, the largest manufacturer of the tidbits claims a library of 10,000 philosophical musings that they rotate in groups in their cookies. Their head fortune writer finally ran out of ideas and actually hired some freelance writers to provide more. So, consider that your next message was probably written by some ink-stained wretch with no deep well of spiritual knowledge, just a desperate desire to hang on to his freelance life long enough to pay his rent. No wonder we get stuff that sounds as if it was written by some old hippie still on a bad acid ­trip.

So, is there any indication that a cookie fortune will change your life if you take it to heart? Yes, actually. One San Francisco manufacturer prints fortunes with “good luck” numbers on them. One week, 110 people split a $19 million Power Ball jackpot. Smelling some kind of rat, the Power Ball people investigated and found that all 110 had bet the number that appeared on their cookie fortune. The largest cookie manufacturer claims to get angry letters from diners who don’t like the fortunes they’ve gotten. “Too vague” is a common complaint. Predictions are the most popular ­types.

So, what have we learned from all this? Well, about as much as we learn from the average fortune cookie. If we get a nasty fortune, we can crumple it up and throw it on the uneaten chow mein. A good fortune? Makes us feel perky for, oh, 15 minutes or so, until we forget we even got it. Fortunes are made up by overworked, brain-fried writers or cookie makers, not gurus, so I’d say they fall somewhere between the nonsense of a Ouija board and the solid, trustworthy predictive ability of the Magic 8 ­Ball.

Hey, Matt: I’ve noticed that if I have a cut or something, if I go in the ocean, it will heal really fast. Am I right? Does the ocean somehow help cuts ­heal? — Anonymous, via email

You bet it does. A nice refreshing dip will cure what ails you, skin-wise. Saltwater (even homemade) actually sucks the life out of any bacteria in the wound and helps things heal up really well. Think back to biology class — membranes, osmosis, that kind of stuff. Saltwater is a more concentrated solution than the bacteria innards, so just as they told you in class, the watery bacteria insides seep out through the cell walls into the saltwater, and the bacteria bite it. Fewer bacteria, faster healing. Better a trip to the beach than a trip to the ­doctor’s.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Confessions of a San Diego Amazon Flex driver

Boxbringer

Dear M.A.: When I really have to pee bad, why do I do that little pee dance? I’m squeezing muscles and shifting my weight back and forth on my feet and sometimes bending over. It always seems to happen when my roommate is hogging the bathroom. I guess it gives me time to try to figure out why wiggling around would be something I’d do automatically. I didn’t make up the pee dance. It’s something my body seems to do on its own. So what’s the ­deal? — Marissa, outside the bathroom

The pee dance is sort of like a variation on the cha-cha, dontcha think? Step together, wiggle wiggle, step together, squeeze those muscles. Add a sparkly little skating costume, and you’re ready for Dancing With the Pee-ers. Doctors’ comments on the situation say, all that wiggling and clenching is displacement activity. Displacement is stuff we do to distract ourselves from an uncomfortable situation we can’t control. We gotta go, no place to go, bladders screaming, so our brains take all that stressful energy and funnel it into hopping or humming or clenching or deep breathing — anything to distract us from the real problem. Everybody does it. It’s more popular than the ­Macarena.

Sponsored
Sponsored

Matt: How long are fortune cookies valid? Does your fortune expire after a certain amount of days or upon receipt of a new fortune ­cookie? — Tim, via email

We dug around looking for a fortune-cookie expert to figure this one out for us, but nobody seems to have thought ahead like that. Does it last until you pay the bill and leave the restaurant? Until you’re hungry again after a Chinese meal? Until you figure out exactly what the heck your fortune actually means? Fortune cookies aren’t even Chinese to begin with. They’re Japanese. But when Japanese were interned in POW camps here in the U.S., Chinese restaurateurs grabbed the idea and made it their own. Apparently they didn’t know what they were taking on, though. Today, the largest manufacturer of the tidbits claims a library of 10,000 philosophical musings that they rotate in groups in their cookies. Their head fortune writer finally ran out of ideas and actually hired some freelance writers to provide more. So, consider that your next message was probably written by some ink-stained wretch with no deep well of spiritual knowledge, just a desperate desire to hang on to his freelance life long enough to pay his rent. No wonder we get stuff that sounds as if it was written by some old hippie still on a bad acid ­trip.

So, is there any indication that a cookie fortune will change your life if you take it to heart? Yes, actually. One San Francisco manufacturer prints fortunes with “good luck” numbers on them. One week, 110 people split a $19 million Power Ball jackpot. Smelling some kind of rat, the Power Ball people investigated and found that all 110 had bet the number that appeared on their cookie fortune. The largest cookie manufacturer claims to get angry letters from diners who don’t like the fortunes they’ve gotten. “Too vague” is a common complaint. Predictions are the most popular ­types.

So, what have we learned from all this? Well, about as much as we learn from the average fortune cookie. If we get a nasty fortune, we can crumple it up and throw it on the uneaten chow mein. A good fortune? Makes us feel perky for, oh, 15 minutes or so, until we forget we even got it. Fortunes are made up by overworked, brain-fried writers or cookie makers, not gurus, so I’d say they fall somewhere between the nonsense of a Ouija board and the solid, trustworthy predictive ability of the Magic 8 ­Ball.

Hey, Matt: I’ve noticed that if I have a cut or something, if I go in the ocean, it will heal really fast. Am I right? Does the ocean somehow help cuts ­heal? — Anonymous, via email

You bet it does. A nice refreshing dip will cure what ails you, skin-wise. Saltwater (even homemade) actually sucks the life out of any bacteria in the wound and helps things heal up really well. Think back to biology class — membranes, osmosis, that kind of stuff. Saltwater is a more concentrated solution than the bacteria innards, so just as they told you in class, the watery bacteria insides seep out through the cell walls into the saltwater, and the bacteria bite it. Fewer bacteria, faster healing. Better a trip to the beach than a trip to the ­doctor’s.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

The wildest things on the Funky Fries & Burgers menu

Freak shakes are what might result if an ice cream truck crashed into a candy store
Next Article

Gaslamp ugly sweater pub crawl, Coronado ice skating, Nutcracker tea party, Del Mar Red Nose Run

2022 Reader Christmas events guide
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close