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Deliberately getting rid of food after ingesting it goes back a long way. Special areas called vomitoriums, in which people were encouraged to throw up after a meal, were popular in ancient times.
That painful taste when you vomit comes from hydrochloric acid, which is so strong it can go through stainless steel and eat through paint; a form of it is even used by bricklayers to clean mortar.
Barfing was not only accepted but expected after a banquet. It was a means of getting rid of the prodigious quantities of food and drink pigs gluttonously ingested at their bacchanalian gatherings, and it was believed to prevent hangovers the next day.
Devotees sometimes stuck feathers, such as those from peacocks, down their throats to stimulate their gag reflex. Indeed, practicing this led to the death of Emperor Claudius I.
People who are into Roman showers are aroused by vomit. It is said that some men of this type get their women drunk, then try to cause a gag reflex by sticking their penises down the women's throats.
On New Year's Eve, 1998, vomit vigilantes (euphemistically called "Clean Teams") were dispatched throughout New York City's Grand Central Station. They were supposed to thrust a throw-up bag under the chin of anyone who seemed to be ready to throw up.
If your vomit looks like what you ate, you just ate. If it's soupy, it's been in your stomach for a while.
Many children can vomit at will, and some child psychologists say the best way to stop a child from doing this for attention is to make the child eat it afterward.
Bulimia as a dieting method appears to be in vogue now. A paper reports that a new fad among teenagers is bulimia parties. While it's not quite like a bulimic bachelor party—where instead of a girl coming out of a cake, the cake comes out of the girl—it's said that some teenagers are having scarf-and-barf parties. They get together, binge on their favorite fattening foods, and then go to the bathroom and throw it all up.
Scary rides on amusement parks sometimes turn vomit into a lethal weapon. People puke and the vomit flies around, covering not only the bodies and faces of others on the ride, but sometimes the pukers' noses and mouths, preventing them from breathing. Centrifugal-force rides are especially risky.
If you try to stop yourself from throwing up by closing your mouth, the vomit will just come out your nose.