By Lee Allen
7 Shocking Facts About Scabs
A piece of advice I often hear repeated from people in the creative industries is to remain curious and question everything. I try my best to do so, I spend my life Googling and researching subjects I don’t know enough about or strengthening my knowledge in areas I’d school the Eggheads on. I’ve embarked on countless Wikipedia binges throughout the years, you know the drill…
11:53 pm: Modern history of Saudi Arabia
12:39 am: Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor
12:45 am: Toronto Raptors accomplishments and records 02:06 am: Haile Selassie
I’ve also got into the habit of force-reading about twenty articles a day on an assortment of different subjects, in the hope one might trigger a moment of genius.
Another thing I’ve read a lot lately are SCAB’s, and while I know what SCAB stands for, I don’t actually know anything about real life scabby scabs, the ones that appear after you attempt to deliver a ‘peoples elbow’ to some suckers midsection in a well paved area of your humble abode.
So, I did my research and I’ve gathered seven surprising (some scary) but completely true facts about scabs for anyone who might be interested, here goes:
1. French scientist Marcel Petit is the man credited with discovering the scab, after grazing his knee in a near-fatal hammock accident. The discovery was first reported in French journal ‘Scientifique.’
2. Petit was awarded a Nobel Prize for his scab-related exploits, though many believe the true father of the scab was Englishman Wilfried D. Norris, who first documented the “skins makeshift protective layer” in a personal diary dating back to 1704.
3. The word scab is derived from the name Sandra Caballero, wife of Marcel Petit. Explaining why he named the discovery after his wife, he said “elle me protège , beaucoup d’ amour et d’affection”, roughly translating to ‘she offers me protection, a lot of love and affection.’
4. The largest scab on record (per Guinness Book Of Records) was credited to Marta Wilmhousen of Andorra la Vella. After a badger began gnawing on her washing line, Mrs. Wilmhousen attempted to fend it off with a broom, the badger then proceeded to claw the skin off her left leg, leaving her with a 28-inch scab extending from ankle to waist.
5. A rare disease named EBMI (endothelial basement membrane incrassation) can cause carriers skin to remain permanently scabbed over following a wound. One infamous carrier of the disease was 1940’s Circus Performer, Emile Gostkowski of Cleveland, Ohio, who was covered almost scalp to stomach in scabs and adopted the name ‘The Human Scab Man’. Gostkowski was later known for his role as a villain in the 1951 film, Superman and the Mole Men.
6. Baltimore Colts Linebacker Tyrone Griffiths sat out his team’s victory in Super Bowl V, through fears of reopening a scab on his right knee. Griffiths was renowned for being a hypochondriac, a trait which frequently roused the ire of his coaches. The following season he was traded to the then-lowly Houston Oilers before dropping out of the league altogether two years later.
7. Whilst picking scabs can delay healing time and often lead to infection, the ‘Scabula’, a tool created by Silicon Valley startup NAHFAM Labs, will allow users to safely remove scabs and encourage healing by leaving a clear protective film over the skin.