I promised something for our office mag. Opened an editor and decided to pen ‘something’. Looked around the cubicle absently, all the while thinking on what to write. And lo! it struck. I decided to write on ‘yawning’. No friends! None of my cubicle mates inspired me to write on this subject. Such inspirations come from the self! But if someone reading this feels that he/she was the source of inspiration, I would definitely not grudge credit!
Cursing myself for feeling so sleepy and not doing any ‘good’ thinking, I was also yawning. Why the hell am I yawning away to glory? Why am I actually not here, and nowhere else too? I was convinced that a cup of hot tea will surely do the trick (the fact being, that I was in a mood to have a tea, and did not care whether I was yawning or not!). I fetched myself a tea, and gulp.!.. it went! But my yawning din’nt! Saw a couple of faces looking at me, no, at my tirelessly yawning mouth! They seemed to be on the verge of ‘it’. Told myself, “No, I must not yawn”! And guess what? I did not know when I stopped yawning, but I did!
And after a while, started to wonder why I was yawning in the first place? The obvious reason-sleeplessness. But that was not true. Had a good sleep the previous night. Certainly not fatigue or sickness.Was it boredom then? Maybe. Will that cause yawning? Not sure. But there must be some reason, right? Whom to consult for help? Oh! How can I forget my wonderful friend, a friend in need!
I opened a browser, and connected to http://www.google.com, for, the latter is ‘one’ of my friends when I’m in need! And guess what? All the links seemed to shout the answer- ‘Yawning is contagious’! Interesting! There is actually a forum discussing this ‘behaviour’!!!
Having decided to prod a little more into the details, I visited a few links. All the sites make a definitive statement on yawning being contagious. But no one knows why we actually yawn. After some effort (also to suppress yaaawwing), some scientific explanation in a site read thus:
“The brain has less need of cerebrospinal fluid to nourish the cells or to transport brain chemicals that are used in the process of processing comprehension of the stimulation…but we do, dream and move in our sleep, enough to keep CSF from becoming stagnant, yet, not enough to make the system (cerebrospinal fluid) work nominally…blah…blah.. ”
Did that make any sense to you. Well, that was a bouncer to me!! Told you, I was also busy suppressing…
I’ve seen a few other mammals yawn too. Dogs, cats, lions. Not sure if the reptiles, amphibians etc do too! Difficult to imagine a snake yawning! Needs more imagining and googling! I’m already beginning to yawn again. So, leave the rest to you. That is, if you are interested!
If you are also yawning after reading this. I read something to this effect, that is, reading on ‘yawning’ can make you yawn!