Friday, February 3, 2012

The wrong kind of neckin'

I hate to inflict the following on you because I know already have enough on your mind.

But this chronic problem is about what’s just below your mind.

Your neck.

You’re misusing it.

I noticed this because I started to discern my neck’s begun making a slight little click every time I turned my head to the left about 45 degrees.

It’s not painful. It’s not dangerous. Just annoying, like the realization I’ll be watching Madonna perform Sunday.

I spend a lot of time thinking about the human body. Mine and yours. I wonder why we’re shaped the way we are, why some of our bodies appear durable and others start going to hell immediately after we extinguish the candles on our 40th birthday cakes.

It’s important that I keep my body in shape. Not because I’m a fitness fanatic, certainly. I just don’t like to shop. I have all the clothes I need in all the sizes that fit me. If my body starts changing shape or parts of it begin falling off then I need to find time and money to go to the mall and that deducts from essential drinking time.

So when I start to feel a little click in the knees or neck I try to address it.

For instance, I was doing as many as 10 pull-ups a day for the last year or so. There’s a pull-up bar in my office so I use it. If the last guy had left behind a blender, I’d be making milkshakes.

But then my right forearm began to hurt so I stopped doing pull-ups and now use the bar to hang my shirts.

Nothing goes to waste -- except, now, my upper body.

But when I learned what’s causing the neck click, I realized I was doomed to a life of neck clicks.

It’s either that or just drive my car forever in a straight line.

See, our neck use is chronically disproportional. Here’s how:

A cautious driver will pull up to a stop sign and come to a complete stop. Then he or she will turn his or her neck 45 degrees to see if any traffic is coming from the left. Then he or she will turn his or her neck 45 degrees to the right to see if any traffic is coming from the right.

Then -- and here’s the trouble -- he or she will turn his or her neck 45 degrees to the left again before safely proceeding.

We turn our necks to the left twice as much as we do to the right!

Click. Click. Click.

One solution is to alter the sides of the road we drive on every other day, but that could lead to other health problems, notably blunt force trauma from the inevitable multi-car pileups at every single intersection across America.

So now I’m trying to right the ship by spending more non-vehicular time looking anywhere but left.

See, I believe a healthy body is all about balance.

As noted in this April post about my attempts to become left-handed, I’ve long advocated those of us who are right handed use the left hand to do things like brush our teeth, pick up a fork or drink a glass of water.

We need our dominant hands to do things like sign checks and toss darts, but we shouldn’t allow the left to loaf through life. It needs to contribute.

It’s all about the yin and and the yang.

I try and follow up a funny movie with a drama. One night I’ll enjoy chocolate ice cream, the next vanilla. If we vacation in the mountains one summer, the next we’re bound for the beach.

It’s the way life ought to be.

I guess that means tomorrow I’ll have to try and write something intelligent.

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