Wednesday, 16 May 2007

Mouse-ball gunk: is there a name for it?

I was cleaning the hairy black crud off my mouse-ball's rollers this morning, and I wondered if the stuff has a name. I'm sure must have, but I'll be damned if I can find it. A quick Google tells me that the gunk is composed of - big yetch - skin flakes, sebum, sweat, dust, hairs, crumbs and, if you're a smoker, cigarette ash. But even the mighty Google hasn't thrown out a name.

What's it called? If it has no name, may I propose one?

Goip (pronounced goy-p). That's what my late, sainted Norwegian granny used to call the dark greasy stuff that collects in cracks in kitchen tables and round the edges of a counter-top hob. It's an all-purpose word that can also apply to (sensitive readers, please click away now) what collects between your toes, under your fingernails and in dogs' ears. I think it's a damn fine word.

If you have a better one, let me know.

(And might I recommend a craft knife and a pair of tweezers for removing mouse-ball lint?)

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