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Monday, May 27, 2024

Column: Yawning Yanni

Yawning is a most flavorful exercise indeed. It’s kind of like Pringles: once you pop you might not be able to stop because MSG shares a near identical chemical structure with high-grade heroin. I’m bullshitting. But let’s say your friend yawns and you yawn back. This is a perfectly normal part of yawning behavior, although an odd one (are we communicating subconsciously, like telling other members of the human herd that we’re exhausted and sleepy-time should commence or is it that our brains are overheating?). And when it happens with strangers I always feel a little violated or like I’ve violated the other person’s privacy.

Think about it. Your approximately three-second-long mouth spasm was thrust nakedly out into the world for all to see. And that slight giblet of drool dangling ever so gently off the corner of your mouth, which is now sagging into faux-pas oblivion, needs to be wiped up lest you want to look like Rex before he gets his Beggin’ Strips®.

(You know, sometimes I think certain dog food ads are designed to prey on the human instinct to desire quality bacon. Beggin’ Strips® come in four different flavors for cryin’ out loud: Bacon, Cheese & Bacon, Beef & Bacon and Turkey & Bacon. Those are all making me hungry. For Christ’s sake, they’ve got me hooked on the orgasmic idea of merging cheese and bacon into one holy union under Dog.)

That’s why I generally avoid looking strangers in the eye after we’ve had a yawn-to-yawn (read like “heart-to-heart”) because it’s rather intimidating. Here’s a sample of my inner dialogue during a yawn-to-yawn: “Oh shit, chica. You just yawned and then you made me yawn. Wow, that was really crazy. But I don’t even know who you are so I’m going to kind of look away and then look back again as if I just noticed you. Nice scarf. Are your eyes watery like mine? You’re pretty. Oh – back to the yawning. Yea, we just yawned together. Would you like my number?”

After I come to grips with not giving her my number I realize that she’s walked into the MU and has already passed that awkward lady who sells college rings outside the bookstore. You’re going to sell college rings? Really? I didn’t even fall for that shit when I was in high school and you’re going to try to the pull the wool over my eyes again? Have you no shame? One time she tried selling me the “Large Oval Curriculum II” and I was like, “large oval what?”

There are a bunch of different ways to yawn, too. You can do the fist-to-mouth move, where it looks like you’re coughing but you’re actually just hovering your fist near your mouth for no reason while you yawn. There’s also the famous triangulation move where the yawner makes a triangle shape with their lower jaw during the yawn (I like to make hexagons when I yawn).

And then there’s the continual pat move, where you just tap your mouth while yawning, again, for no reason. The continual pat comes in two flavors: the prissy British flavor which is notable for its stiff hand and gentle, rhythmic movements, and the relaxed stoner flavor which is widely known for its askew, slack hand and rhythmic pounding. THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID. For some reason, those descriptions only make sense if they’re written in a sexual manner. It was also totally unintentional, and is a testament to the human inability to describe physical things in writing without getting a little racy.

Speaking of racy, yawning is also a perfect compliment to snuggling. If you yawn and then snuggle, you’re guaranteed to win over whomever it is you’re leaning on. Girl or guy, it doesn’t matter. A yawn-to-snug is a huge leap forward in any relationship. It’s probably on par with watching Sex and The City 2 with your girlfriend for the third time. And if you top off your yawn with a both-arms-in-the-air-stretch, then it is absolutely guaranteed that your significant other is going to fall for you. Because it secretly conveys to them that they’re as soft and comforting as a pillow. Those are some deep implications.

But seriously though, Sex and The City 2 has no fucking plot. And I honestly don’t remember the girls being that materialistic during their run on HBO. They made them look like capitalist swine, for chrissakes. And Liza Minnelli? That was just a trainwreck waiting to happen. She honestly should’ve just stopped after Cabaret. And why do girls always think falling off of shit is funny? Like when Charlotte falls off the camel: Why is that funny? And why will you commiserate with your girlfriends about it for the next decade? You fell off a fucking camel, it’s not that big of a deal. I don’t think girl comedy will ever translate that well to a guy’s sense of humor. But maybe that’s just because we socialize differently. In the meantime I’m looking for a way to get back the two hours and 26 minutes of my life that I just lost.

Dear Carol: DAVE KARIMI hates cats. They’re useless animals because all they do is strut around with their assholes in the air and act like they’re Queens of their domain. Nobody likes that. Nobody. Cat breath also has a distinct smell of ass to it that’s not welcoming in the slightest. If you want to vent about cats to BIG DAVE, his e-mail is dkarimi@ucdavis.edu.


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