Posted: April 24, 2008 in Uncategorized

The English language is one of the most confusing, and misleading, languages on the planet. From synonyms and homonyms, to just plain odd words, it’s no wonder that many immigrants don’t care to learn the language. I find that, on many occasions, I get a word from this (my) wonderful language in my head and it just bounces around until I do something with it. Today, I have a word floating around my skull that I don’t believe I will ever use in a sentence. So, as a matter of intellectual purging, well, you know the drill.



Earwig. Say it with me…eeeaaarrrwwwiiiggg. It just sounds gross, doesn’t it? This little gem popped up like a boner on prom night today and for nine hours and 51 minutes, it has tortured the inner workings of my mind. I quickly came to realize I didn’t know what the fuck an earwig was, so I did a little research.

An earwig is, quite obviously, a bug (that part I knew). What I didn’t know is, why is it called an earwig? If there was a bug around that actually resided in the ears of humans, one would think that it would be much more hotly advertised. Maybe in elementary school there would be earwig prevention videos, or maybe there would be statistics on the number of people killed by earwigs each year. Considering that I have never run across either situation, I found myself perplexed. Well, after a little light digging, I found out why an earwig is called an earwig and I was mildly annoyed when I came across the answer.

The name of this ugly insect was originally derived from an old wives’ tale. This tale states that they (the bug, presumably before they were named earwigs) burrowed into the brains of humans via earhole (new word) entry. What…the…fuck…??? Who the hell are these wives that are spreading such rumors? Was there a committee of bored wives back in the olden days that came up with absurd, and obscenely disgusting, gossip to spread among the masses? Apparently at least one of the aforementioned wives was an entomologist because, as it happens, the name stuck, and, voila, we have earwigs (I wonder what they were called before). So we can say thanks for this linguistic marvel, in large part, to a group of women that had fun scaring the shit out of people with evil tales of entomological bloodlust (and for the record, the whole masturbation equals blindness tale, not cool man…not cool at all).

There we have it…word purged and Readers enlightened. Life is grand.

Screw you guys, I’m goin’ home.

–Eric Cartman


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