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Water on the ear

Posted by Smokey Stover on June 23, 2005

In Reply to: Water on the ear posted by pamela on June 23, 2005

: I want to know the meaning of this phrase " they talked until I got water on the ear".i would also want to know its translation to spanish

Are you referring to Gimpel the Fool, by Isaac Bashevis Singer? After messing around with Google for a while I conclude, perhaps wrongly, that almost everyone using the phrase uses it as a synonym for "water in the ear," meaning water that doesn't drain out of the outer ear promptly after swimming. It drains out sooner or later, but until then can produce a rather uncomfortable sensation as well as auditory distortion. That seems to be how Singer uses it. In his sentence, it's not a real condition, it's a psychological reaction to so much talk. When otolaryngologists talk about "water on the ear" thay MAY be talking about scarring of the eardrum (tympanosclerosis) which mimics the appearance of water, as a result of an autoimmune disorder. (Dr. Briggs, we need you here.) But I'm going with "water in the ear" in your example. If you speak Spanish, and have ever been swimming, then you know as much as anyone how to translate the phrase into Spanish. SS

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