The Everyday Lore Project

26 November 2020 – Mouth Ulcer

26 November 2020 – Mouth Ulcer

Two things: Number one, I have a mouth ulcer. Number two, I’m going to be on  Saturday Live on BBC Radio Four this Saturday talking about this project. Back to one, as when I think of two, I get a wee bit shaky.

I did have two mouth ulcers, but the first one went yesterday. The one that’s left is just inside my lip, in the perfect position to be bitten every time I’ve chomped down on all the comfort the food I’ve been mainlining today (see two above). 

Now, of course, I have previously touted the supposed miracle properties of blackberry leaf tea in helping with mouth ulcers. However, my spiders returned, and this time it’s personal. My tea has been commandeered by the smaller of the three. It gets very angry when I move things. And I’m not ashamed to say that I’m far more scared of it, than it is of me.

So I tried three other remedies. First up was cayenne pepper dabbed on the offending area by a cotton bud. I suppose this cure was all about the pleasure pain principle. To start with, I felt nothing. Then nothing but pain. And because I didn’t want to swallow a load of cayenne, I was stuck with my lip sticking out like a truculent child. I’ll admit that the desire to lick off the pepper was overwhelming, a desire that evaporated as soon as my tongue felt like it was on fire. Afterwards, the ulcer felt more pronounced and a bit numb. Until the second pain wave crashed. 4/10

Next up was a slice of pineapple. It’s said that a slice of pineapple held against an ulcer will help it heal. I slotted a sliver in between the ulcer and my teeth. It reminded me of the discomfort of wearing comedy fangs, plus there was dribbing. I ate the first, second, third and fourth sliver in quick succession. They were delicious. Then I actually tried pressing a slice against my lip, before eating that too. The ulcer did feel calmer, but also a bit more tender. And then I bit it again when I ate some more pineapple. 3/10 for ulcer remedy, 10/10 for snackage.

And lastly a smidgen of honey. I just have bog standard honey, but honey is honey and on it went. Unlike the others, the honey was cold against my ulcer. Then it melted and slid off my lip (which was in truculent child position again), and onto my chin. I tried again, but the licking came back into play. Finally, I gave up. The honey felt good but there was no difference. Maybe I should have mixed it with pigeon droppings as one helpful Twitter person recommended. 3/10

Now briefly back to two. I’ll be on Saturday Live on BBC Radio 4 on Saturday morning between 9am – 10.30am. And if you have any folklore remedies for the quelling of nerves, seriously, let me know.

The Everyday Lore Project has been running since St Distaff’s Day on 7 January 2020 and will run until 12th Night on 6 January 2021. Some days, like today, are a gift for trying out folklore (albeit painfully), other days are tied to the ritual year, while others have been filled with folklore associated activities, like automatic writing, or ceromancy. There’s not long to go now before the end, but there’s still time to recommend me something to try (however painful), subscribe, and share what you read…


Published by Liza Frank

Author of My Celebrity Boyfriend. Obsessed with hula hooping, sons of preachermen and fresh dates, sometimes all at the same time. Curator of Folklore Agony and The Everyday Lore Project.

2 comments on “26 November 2020 – Mouth Ulcer”

  1. Glorious Barbara says:

    It’s always worth trying the good old cabbage remedy! It has to be from Londis though…

    1. Strangely enough, boiled cabbage juice was on the list, but I wasn’t sure if I could take the smell! Londis of course, is a given!

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