Sunday, October 28, 2018

Flu week: The cough

Unlike in yesterday's missive, I will not be ceaselessly interrupting my comments here to cough. Well, I will be, but I won't be narrating it.

But let us take a moment now to reflect on The Cough. What a clever little piece of engineering it really is. One has this whole, essential, air system, with the lungs at the core. And they are really exposed to quite a bit, I mean, they are exposed to pretty much anything in the world. So there's this mucous stuff to protect the system. And if something nasty gets into it, or some virus invades, the mucous goes into overtime and throws itself mercilessly over everything, rendering it mute and neutral. But now one has to bundle this huge amount of cleverly used mucous out of the lungs and trachea and pipes and all that. How is one supposed to get rid of this stuff?

That is what The Cough is a solution to. Get a breathful of air. Compress it in ones lungs, and then blow it out ones throat in an explosion that blasts out the used up mucous into the mouth where it can be properly discarded. 

So the solution to getting stuff out of the lungs? An explosion made of the air that's just sitting there anyway. It's brilliant.

Unfortunately it is pure misery for everyone involved in the process. One could easily use this to prove that the universe is fantastically clever, but cold to the point of sociopathology. But I prefer to picture someone so wildly carried away with a piece of fantastic design that they forgot it was going to be used on real subjects. Although it might all be the same thing. There is no god, really, it's just one great big Mad Scientist.

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