You’ve a grandson…..child is so cute & his nose is so
straight & so fine…lucky sir”. These words roused me from
my sadistic state. I was not in myself as since morning my
daughter had been experiencing labor pains. Nurse was referring
to the nose of the baby so specially as if no other organs
are worthy of mention.
Why…for a minute
I imagined…yes…how absurd the face would be without that!
The face would look as smooth as a pancake. The nurse’s nose
reference, in the bliss of solitude, made me ponder deeply.
My head & heart demanded a treat for it & the courteous
hands had to award that.
If we muse at the
placement of the nose with two hairy hollow nostrils on the face
we feel, it is centrally & majestically located over the thick
line of mustachios, under the two eyes providing a support for the
double arch of the eyebrows. On its capital the forehead, the store-house
of hidden written document of the predestined ups & downs, clicks
& slicks of our life. From the aesthetic point of view also
the nose is supreme. In view
of its prominent position nose is a kind of witness or evidence
of a person’s character. It is capable of expressing two functions
at once---that of smell & a kind of speech. When I say a kind
of speech I remember the people expressing their disgust. How expressive..,
Whenever a man is
in a mood of anger or robust quarrelling it is expressed by his
nose with its dilated nostrils. You must have people heard saying—“Don’t
expand your nose. I haven’t done anything wrong & denouncing”.
It is very much certain that nose plays its role in expressing love,
in pressing entertainment & impressing critical remarks.
Brophy in his book ‘The Human Nose’ says that “One
which nose often provokes ridicule from unkind observers &
humiliation in those who consider themselves unfortunately
dealt with by nature, is the nose”? The long nose, the hook
nose, the bulbous nose are the part of stock-in-trade of comedians
in plays & jokers in circus who are the most favorite
of children. Napoleon preferred people with big & long
nose in the officorial cadres when he wanted any brainy work
done. Zoology doesn’t anything on this.
Nose is the
lovelier & ever vigilant part of the face. We can’t imagine
a human face without a nose.., can we? I call ever vigilant,
coz other parts of the face….eyes sleep, mouth closes, ears
deafen but the nose is always on duty…
The nose is so mischievous
that it instigates the tongue if it senses any aromatic delicacy.
It orders the hands to close it if there is any bad odour…for sometimes
that bad odour creates a sense of nausea & makes the stomach
vomit. So isn’t it an active organ? The nose is an endeared part
of a face for a woman. The nose ring on their nose speaks a lot
of the feminine grace. The nose ring that Rajasthani woman wear
is called ‘bhulak’ which is attached to both the nostrils. The nose-stick
incident turned the miserly & greedy Srinivas into Purandara
Dasa distributing all his wealth amongst the poor & the needy.
Our literature would not have been enriched without Purandara Dasa’s
meaningfully devotion padas & kirtanas.
During my school days,
once I’d a fun with a nose. My maternal brother used to visit us
often. During his visit to us he used to sleep in my room. I used
to be disturbed in my studies & sleep by his terrible snoring,
a tuneful serenade. I made a plan to get rid of him. One day, I
took a cotton wick & slowly inserted in his nostrils. There
was such a burst. A big burst, don’t ever ask!!! From that day whenever
he sees me he screws his nose indicating that he would pay me through
my nose one day or the other. The other day I was telling my friend
not to quarrel with his family members & how he should help
them to help themselves. CHUT…was the retort… “Don’t poke your nose
in to my affairs”. I began to wonder at this expression as how it
came into usage. Is it coz, the face comes first in that case &
the nose its protruding part would be the first naturally!!
The nose is a symptomatic
expressor of certain disorders or infections of the stomach---a
red nose indicating indigestion, scratching of nose indicates worms
infected stomach. Running nose with coryza is the cold affected
nose. Once when all the friends were talking, the talk turned on
Jayant while telling about his loose morals one of my friends laid
a finger on the nose. I didn’t follow, tube light I’m. Many days
later I could sense that the sign meant a man keeping a whore. The
nose has to pay the penalty if the mind goes wrong. In Ramayana,
Shrupanka got her nose cut by Laxman when she expressed her desire
to marry him. While walking if legs go wrong and mind goes off first
the nose gets injured and thus pays penalty for their folly. How
noble!!! In some parts of our villages wanton women are called nose
less, obviously referring to the habits of husbands who cut off
the noses of their infidel wives.
My wife always complains
about my nose as she can’t give surprise dishes full of aroma, for
I readily smell everything. Surprise & suspense will be missing.
That is why she jokes whether I’d been a police Alsatian dog in
my previous birth... Sometimes she has complimented too when I told
her about seething milk, rice & dal on the gas having put &
forgotten. The ‘nose’ has enriched the linguistic expressions in
almost all languages. The Expression ‘Paying through the nose’ may
be traced in the 19th century when the Irish were compelled to pay
tribute to their Nose conquerors or suffer a slit nose. History
tells us that there was once a nose tax of a penny nose in Sweden.
‘To do a thing on nose’ is a phrase for punctuality in modern American
English. Some English words have typical nasal sounds in eaten,
While I was giving final touches to my talk my wife came to me &
reminded that we should go into temple, for it was an auspicious
day. I told her that I was busy writing an essay on nose without
seeing her. My daughter shrieked and told me, “Papa, see, see, and
mummy has twisted her nose at your work”. Then I turned to my wife
and told my daughter, “She’s right…let her do, Pinky…for I’d promised
a nose stick on our first marriage anniversary. Though silver jubilee
of our marriage anniversary falls this year, I’m not bale to keep
up my promise….Poor me”. Pinky kept quiet simply nosing at me for
being a defauler.
“This year I must get her a diamond nose-stick somehow. I’ve to
honor her really beautiful long & straight nose”. Pinky shouted,
“Mummy…three cheers to your nose”... I put my pen down with a satisfaction
of nosing around the nose.
Contributing Writer: Shubha
Mangala, a single parent Email: email@example.com