by Nic Olson
They say that your sneeze moisture travels as fast as Mario Lemieux’s slapshot. That is what they said when I was a kid anyway. Now Lemieux is a multi-millionaire owner of a successful sports franchise, and has great hair, and my sneeze residue is found on the sleeve of my sweater and the walls of rooms in southeast Montreal. Who wins? You be the judge.
They’ve done sneeze studies: how far, how fast, if your eyes pop out of your head if you keep them open during the act, if your soul escapes until someone says, ‘Bless You’ or ‘À tes souhaits’ or ‘Gesundheit’, or if it is indeed 1/14th of an orgasm. No conclusive evidence has been found that your soul escapes when you sneeze. Or that you even have one. Conclusive evidence has shown that 14 sneezes in a row is not actually equal to 1Sneeze x 14. We tried in high school.
These days they condition us to sneeze into our armpits or elbow-pits instead of into our hands, contrary to what we had been taught in youth. Evening news teaches us new techniques and NyQuil commercials condition it in us without us even noticing. New 21st century super diseases will inspire such innovations. The vampire sneeze is the new closed fist sneeze. What would a mime look like if he coughed? That joke may not last much longer. What would a vampire look like if he forgot to pull his cape over his face and held in a sneeze with his eyes open? Probably like a mime giving a blow job. I didn’t write the joke.
My brothers used to sneeze directly in my face, spraying sneeze mist in my eyes and mouth. Scientifically it was like getting a vaccination, build up those antibodies against the diseases of the season. In the realm of manners and respect it is maybe the rudest thing one can do to you. I thank them all the same.
As a common courtesy one day we will sneeze on pieces of toast and share them with friends. Immunity cheaper than no-name peanut butter. Hopefully someday our toasters will have speed radars on them so that we know for sure if our sneezes travel as fast as Mario Lemieux’s slap shot, and we will only use the vampire cover to avoid users of hand sanitizer and those with souls to recapture by scaring with blessings. The future relies heavily on our sneeze techniques. Our sneeze residue is the cure for everything. Spread it on toast.