We humans yawn, but we don’t all do it the same. Here are five for your consideration. This list is by no means exhaustive nor definitive of all yawners. These are merely quite common yawning styles we’ve all seen and probably experienced.

The Gaper. Watch this one and prepare yourself for a lack of oxygen in the air – or worse, a pile of carbon dioxide polluting the air in such a way that some of you may get light-headed or even pass out. The oxygen lack and the overdose of carbon dioxide may often happen as this yawner cycles between the two. A Gaper will open so wide that you could yell down his/her throat and get one great big echo in return. In addition, you get the real treat of observing the Gaper’s uvula pull back and bounce around the back of his/her throat like a bowling ball that’s flown out of its own alley. There’s not necessarily any noise, but a deep and wide yawn accompanied by whooshes and gales of air sounds.

The WarbleGaper. This is simply the Gaper with noise. However, that noise is a very high-pitched skree that has the potential of liquidating spinal cords, eardrums and the occasional wine glass. It’s not loud, just very concentrated. The WarbleGaper is usually a smaller person whose skeletal makeup enhances the high pitches, much like a piccolo – though small, it is regarded as one of the loudest instruments in the world.

The Blaster. This one takes gaping to another level, and this one comes with sounds that defy any sort of definition. You think you’ve heard tornado sirens or long, stertorous honks from ships’ horns? Nay, no, never and uh uh. The Blaster has no volume control, so when that yawn hits, it comes out under the pressure of a fully distending diaphragmatic muscle. Full tonal quality is created, so much so that any opera singer within earshot (usually a range of 16 miles on a clear night) will be jealous of such breath support. Remember how the WarbleGaper is based on the piccolo? This one is like bagpipes, only without the tone quality and resonance.

The Quivinator. Our first silent yawner, who is as mute as any yawn can be, and with absolutely no open mouth at all. This is close to being an all-out stifle of a yawn, the difference being that the yawner’s body shudders, quivers, tremors, and otherwise pulsates. Any exhale will silently between barely open lips or even out the nose. If the latter is the case, and if you are lucky enough to be close to observe, you will find the nostrils vibrating like the wings of a hummingbird.

The Stifler. This yawner is similar to the quivinator, but it lacks the visual vibratory manifestations. This kind of yawn is as close to self-paralysis as is possible. Common attributes of the Stifler include eyes squeezed tightly shut, arms, locked at one’s sides, hands in fists and toes clenched so much that the yawner may experience foot cramps. Clearly, too, there is no sound emanating from a Stifler. The body goes completely stiff, the yawn itself takes in air with a hiss similar to a balloon expelling air, followed by a relaxed exhale as the body disengages any tension and returns to a normal state.

The Elvis. This yawner is highly demonstrative with his/her limbs as the yawn is experienced. The Elvis can come teamed with any of the other types, with the clearly logical exception of the Stifler. Arms flail, legs pound the floor, heads roll from shoulder to shoulder – any sort of locomotion of the body may be evident at any time within the performance of the yawn.

Enjoy yourself as you watch people yawn, and see if you, too, can find these types of yawns.

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