Today's Fun-Fact Newsletter is all about our human senses. Did you know there are in fact many more than five human senses? Though medical science snubs it at parties like it's a red-headed organized-religion, the sixth sense refers to the vague, not-at-all-justified-by-reason SOMETHING you feel is right. If pressed you will likely be unable to explain how, why, or whence it came.

The exact number of senses we have is up for debate and varies from person-to-person. Though not necessarily according-to- Hoyle senses traditionally, almost no one would fail to include on the list our sense of pain (nociception) and the muscular senses, including the senses of posture, passive and active movement and of resistance to movement that arise as signals within the periphery. Muscle spindles house this sensory innervation, a fact only scientifically accepted in the past hundred-years. Previous medical authorities wrongly touted the brain itself as the location for this sensory organ.

The ever-curmudgeonly Curmudgeon, bearded-and-fond-of-tobacco-pipes though he may be, is staunchly against seasonal wear. For the dictates of the fashion world he cares not at all, though as a general-rule he is not against affectation. He wears the same sweater every day. Granted he may have many identical sweaters he has purchased, in his wardrobe. This is quite in-keeping with his characteristic style. Or shall we say, lack of style.

Some scientists have devoted their careers to the full-time study of curmudgeonry, yet all experts agree. It is a badge-of-office, a uniform to denote their tribe. That tribe is comprised of almost-always-white, middle-aged males. Without exception they comport themselves in bulbous-yet-amorphous bodies that suffer from both poor hygiene and posture. Observed at home in their habitat, invariably the local community college, they rarely leave their shelter and are observed most days grazing the food-courts on campus.

Common behavior includes forlorn-with-a-dash of wistful glances at coeds, who comprise over half of the population on campus. Coeds are non-violent-aggressors who employ bizarre mating rituals when they are threatened or excited. They almost completely ignore the curmudgeon-population around them save for the instances when a coed is afflicted with a poor mark during seasonal mid/final terms. If that does befall her, she will don her regalia and pursue the unfortunate curmudgeon she feels is responsible. They are likely to mate and this survival tactic almost always benefits the coed at the curmudgeon's expense.

The female curmudgeon is the dominant sex of the species. Males lead boring routine lives, with one noted exception. When the female is around her word is law. All expectations of normal male behavior must be tempered by her presence. The curmudgeon will blithely follow her lead, serve her whims, and is loathe to raise her ire.

Each curmudgeon must court and procreate with one of the student/faculty roster of teacher's assistants (often abbreviated T.A. in the the local dialect). Just before the fall of winter each year they ritually convene to talk about broads, all-a-lather and in a rut at the prospect of a new set of incoming-students bringing vital life blood to enrich their dating gene-pool. Curmudgeons mate for life. But dammit, they don't have to be happy about it.

Most folk are aware-of-but-do-not-include our vestibular sense, which is effectively tucked away in our inner-ear.

BONUS!!! Today we include our Side-Note Fun-Fact at no-extra-charge!

Vestibular is of the same etymological origin as vestibule, ie. in a church. What an odd thing for Mr. Scientist to decide was not just relevant, but in fact close to the top-of-the-list of all possible metaphors and analogs which served as inspiration for coming up with a name. And here's one last interesting fact (in the style you've come to lar senses, including the senses of posture, passive and active movement and of resistance to movement were all generated as a result of afferent signals arising within the periphery [muscle tension-and-love from the Fun Fact Newsletter). Police make use of how our sense of proprioception degrades fairly consistently and drastically under the effects of alcohol. They can usually spot Mr. DrunkDriver in a field-sobriety-test by simply having him touch his nose with his finger with eyes shut. "They've done studies, you know. Sixty-percent of the time, it works every time." (Anchorman)

Finally, interoception provides information to the organism about the internal state of the body, at both a conscious and subconscious level. It further includes the brain's receipt and dispatching of signals from the body into specific sub-regions—like the brain-stem, thalamus, and insula to name three.


Here are another ten that are not yet officially sanctioned, for you perusal, while I sidestep a lawsuit expertly by giving credit for the Top Ten list tradition to the Late Show With David Letterman. Sign up for the free Fun-Fact-of-the-Day Newsletter! Fun-Fact-of-the-Day: fascinating-yet-inane trivia that still comes off as vaguely annoying to share with your friends and family today. Act now!

  1. Seeing your hand in the dark
  2. Hearing the difference between hot and cold water
  3. Having sweat that makes others happy
  4. Sensing magnetic fields
  5. Smelling immune system
  6. Having Superhuman Hearing while Underwater
  7. Having Skin That Smells And Heals
  8. Having A Nose That Smells Death
  9. Life-saving abilities
  10. Smelling personality

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