Things you can say on a blog that you can’t to your “public”

Sometimes you can be more open and honest with strangers than with friends and family. What can be too much information for a friend isn’t for some strangers. I think many blogs are handy confessionals, like post secret.

Unfortunately my friends who don’t blog are now reading this blog and many who read this blog have become some of my best friends so I seem to be hamstrung just a little when it comes to making this a dear diary thing. But almost like the way people ask philosophical-like questions at 4am while being half-stoned, why not go and ask in public a question or thought you had but kept to yourself?

Here’s my contribution:

How come within minutes of eating asparagus, your wee smells of it? It’s the same for coffee.

grilled asparagus
Photo owned by woodleywonderworks (cc)

Oh what, you thought I was going to be high brow or intellectual? Pah.

27 Responses to “Things you can say on a blog that you can’t to your “public””

  1. Twenty Major says:

    If your coffee smells of asparagus then I suggest changing brands.

  2. Mick says:

    I’m told Sugar Puffs have the same effect.

  3. John says:

    Serves you right for eating asparagus in the first place. Vile stuff.

  4. It smells of asparagus because the eater is one of a small number of people who have a genetic quirk that causes that, and the smeller can smell it because they have a genetic quirk that allows them to smell it. In essence: both are freaks of nature. 🙂

    Still, the whole pee-smell thing can happen with lots of foods. If you try it with mints, you’ll get minty pee. Seriously. I know this because I consume ridiculous quantities of Extra Strong Mints – they’re one of my guilty pleasures.

    @John: I quite like asparagus myself, as long as it’s prepared properly. All a matter of taste, really.

  5. Tim Worstall says:

    So this internet thing’s not totally made it over the Irish Sea then yet, eh?

    Any other bits the tubes aren’t bringing you yet? This one maybe?


  6. MJ says:

    @ John & Keith – add butter to just about anything and it will taste nice. Apart from snails.

  7. tina says:

    what?? i never heard that. why are you sniffing your own wee, anyway? is that some sort of a male thing? 😉

  8. More interesting is how you seem to pee within minutes of eating asparagus. You may want to get that seen to, if it’s a regular occurrence. 😉

  9. Anthony says:

    Sugar Puffs do the same alright.

  10. emordino says:

    I’ve never noticed it with asparagus but the Sugar Puffs one is mighty.

  11. UnaRocks says:

    Within a half-hour of asparagus consumption, some people notice their urine has acquired a very pungent odor, often compared to rotting cabbage, ammonia or rotten eggs. The effects of asparagus on urine are generally fleeting and harmless, but it’s not necessarily the consumer’s finest hour, bodily excretion-wise.

    The good news is that asparagus does not affect everyone. Studies conducted on the “asparagus urine” phenomenon (aren’t you glad you didn’t volunteer!) indicate that roughly 40 to 50 percent of those tested developed the distinctive odor. Surprisingly enough, there is also a segment of the population who cannot smell the sulphurous fumes of asparagus-laced urine. It is believed that both the generation of the odoriferous urine and the ability to smell it are based on genetics. Only those with a certain gene can break down the chemicals inside the asparagus into their smelly components, and only those with the proper gene can smell the results of that chemical breakdown.

    Scientists are still not entirely sure which set of chemicals or amino acids contained in asparagus actually cause the smelly pee. The stalks themselves do not acquire a similar odor as they are prepared, so whatever happens most likely happens after ingestion. Experts believe that those with a certain gene produce a digestive enzyme which breaks down the asparagus into various amino acids. One of those compounds is called methyl mercaptan, which is the same chemical which gives a skunk its defensive smell. One theory suggests that asparagus breaks down quickly in the body and an enzyme releases methyl mercaptan, which eventually goes through the kidneys and is excreted as a waste product in the urine.


  12. I believe it’s a genetic oddity. Like the small fraction of people who can’t stand celery, which, when it comes to it, does not really taste of anything.

  13. Alexia says:

    @Rob: I love it when you talk science, Rob. You make it sound durty 🙂

    I love wondering about strange, meandering facts. Like, for example, the dot above a lowercase i or j is known as a tittle.

  14. TheChrisD says:

    Who eats asparagus? Ugh.

  15. UnaRocks says:

    asparagus is yum. Town Bar and Grill used to do a really good asparagus starter, but I think they’ve dumped it. Crysies 🙁

  16. English Mum says:

    Damn. I was going to say Sugar Puffs too. And what is it they say about pineapple? Oh, no, never mind…

  17. Fergal says:

    How come imagination is the only thing that has figments? “Figment” is such a cool word. More things should be allowed to have figments.

    PS Aldi do this apple biscuit thing that takes all of five minutes to give you apple-pee

  18. Damien says:

    Hmmm. Alexia and Fergal are the only ones to express their own wonderings.

    What would happen if you had sugar puffs, asparagus and Aldi apple biscuit thing? (apart from an upset stomach)

  19. Aidan says:

    same thing happens also with 5 or 6 pints of heineken

  20. Jonathan says:

    high brow or intellectual? You? I’ve had odd drunken conversations with you late at night in strange places so I’m staying stumm. I will say that Sugar Puffs and Asparagus have no effect, I’ll add the Aldi apple thing and get back to you on it.

  21. You can say anything in public, so long as you’re certain that no one near you will be able to understand it.

  22. Phil says:

    i have never had asparagus, as far as im aware.
    i’ve also never smelt my pee.
    each to their own.

  23. Phil says:

    i have so many – next time i think of one i will come right back here and tell you first, and your public.

  24. Anytime I eat beef it has the same effect. I kind of like it though.

  25. Niall says:

    Have you noticed that we often indirectly tell friends about embarrassing moments through speaking in the third person. As in:

    “I remember this guy I knew who had pee that smelt of asparagus”

  26. […] the meantime I was thinking about Damien’s post about wonderings. You know what’s really special about them? The associative sensual moments […]

  27. […] but it’s also my public Internet stamp. I’ve come across articles, one being from Damien Mulley, about how having a blog has, and will, influenced the amount of work that has come to […]