Thursday, June 28, 2007

Nozin: Is It All in My Head?

When my friend Kelly was around ten years old, she inadventantly sucked a peanut into her nose. A few seconds later, she stuck out her tongue and there was the peanut, sitting right smack dab in the center of that red pad of taste buds.

Sometimes there's nothing funnier than noses. Other people's noses, anyway.

My own schnozz is sacred. I operate under the belief that my finger is the only thing that should penetrate the holy cavity. Except for an unfortunate incident with a nasal allergy spray and a couple feigned stabs by The Partner, my right pointer digit, and occasionally my pinky, have pretty much gone uncontested in this regard. Until Nozin.

I review products for the Parent Bloggers Network on occasion because I like to inflict my opinion on others just as much as the next person. Usually, I sign up to review products I think I can get excited about. I don't know what I was thinking when I said "yes!" to reviewing a "nasal sanitizer" that comes in a travel pack filled with swabs designed to be stuck into one's nostrils and rubbed around.

I called The Partner into the living room to partake in the experiment with me. He was not thrilled. First of all, he does not believe in products that claim to ward off colds (I've long been a big believer in Airborne fizzy tablets as a magical anti-cold elixir, and he's long believed I'm a sucker). Secondly, he is another one who doesn't like foreign objects up his nose. He'll use his trusty hand trowel to dig for gold with the best of them, but that's where it ends.

I convinced him to help me out in the name of blogging. I handed over an orange-tipped swab and took one for myself. I commenced to flicking the clear tube of the swab as the directions indicated. The liquid inside was supposed to turn cloudy. Mine did. His didn't.

I laughed at him. "Ha, ha! I'm a better flicker than you! You don't know how to flick!"

"It's defective," he said, glaring at me.

I took the swab and applied my expert flick. Nothing. "Oh."

I left him to try his luck at another swab (the package contained ten of them) as I moved on to phase 2. I bent the swab at the black line till a snap was heard, then I pushed the liquid from the bottom of the plastic tube toward the cottony orange top. There were subtle signs of absorption. Then I threw caution to the wind and inserted the stick into one nostril, swabbing the inside rim.

It smelled like an orange. I sighed with relief. I was expecting the nasty medicinal odor of the above-referenced nasal allergy spray. I don't think the Nozin marketing materials tout this fact enough--it actually doesn't smell bad. It's kind of clean and pleasant.

"The tip isn't getting moist," The Partner said to me.

"What?" I was jolted out of my citrus reverie.

He held up his swab.

"Oh," I said.

In fact, the tips didn't seem to get noticeably wet, although a minimal amount of moisture was evident. I just assumed that was the way it was supposed to be. Plus, it made it a much less drippy and gross proposition to insert into one's nose. The Partner, on the other hand, couldn't get past the idea of insufficient lubrication.

He stuck it in anyway. He was unimpressed. He sighed a bit and then went about his business. He clearly did not believe that a dry, orange stick could do what the Nozin marketing materials said: kill 99.9 percent of a host of germs (including the common cold, streptococcus pneumoniae, and Influenza A) at the chief site of infection.

Me, I'm willing to believe. I will keep the swabs on hand for the next time I fly in a germ-laden plane or set foot in a school filled with sniveling children. Even if The Partner is right and the effectiveness is all in my head (pardon the pun)--so what? Whether it's hard science or a placebo, I'll take my good health where I can get it.

The next morning, I asked The Partner what he would want to mention if he was writing a review about Nozin.

"The first stick didn't get cloudy and the thing didn't get very moist," he said. Then he shrugged and offered a sly, sideways smile. "But hey. I'm not sick, am I?"


Boz said...

I never realized that the nose was the holy cavity.

You learn something new every day.

Jenny said...

There is nothing worse than insufficient lubrication in the holy orifice.

Wait, what are we talking about again?

slouching mom said...

I'm writing up my own review of Nozin, so I don't want to say too much here, now, just:

"I'm a better flicker than you."


jen said...

i love the interaction between the two of you, orafices and all.

Her Bad Mother said...

This post was only sorta gross, but a lot funny.

I'll skip the Nozin, though.

Mom101 said...

I am shocked that anyone could make me chuckle so much talking about cold medicine.