Monday, September 23, 2002

Presenting... Joanie!

The Cuticle Blog

I was looking at my cuticles as I sat in front of the computer wondering what Suli would like me to say here. My cuticles got me thinking. They look like hell. But, more importantly, I realized that cuticles are like government.

You're laughing, aren't you? Don't. I'm serious.

Think about this for a minute. What is the purpose of the cuticle? Well, the cuticle is a buffer between the nailbed and the world at the ends of our fingertips. The cuticle settles in on the nail and seals off the nail matrix from the germ-laden environment beyond.

Part of the responsibility of having nails is to maintain the cuticles. If you let them go, they become a ragged collection of hangnails, tears that allow foreign bodies into the body to attack our immune systems, or they overgrow the nail completely, suffocating it. Maintaining the cuticles, you can keep them in check. You find the overzealous cuticle and cut it back. You limit how much ground the cuticle is allowed. You also seek out those weak areas and trim away the dead skin, keeping the damage there to a minimum.

If you apply this same logic to government and the responsibility of the people to monitor and place checks on what our officials can do, it makes perfect sense. We need a buffer between us (the nailbed/matrix) and the nastiness at our fingertips (the world.) If we give the government free reign and don't occasionally check their growth, they will completely suffocate us. Or, if we don't watch those areas of decay and erosion, we are risking exposure to unsavory elements that will place undue concern on our defense system.

Doesn't it seem crazy that we spend more time worrying about our fingernails than we do our elected officials? Which one impacts your life more?


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