Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Cold That Kills

This may be one of the final postings here at SingleTails.

It seems that I don't have much time left and I'll soon be shuffling off this mortal coil.

Let me explain.

This past week at Ho(t)me(n) Depot was our annual inventory. On Wednesday, I started work at 1 p.m. and worked until 10 p.m., went home, went to bed, and then had to get up at 4:30 to be at work at 5:45 a.m. And when I get home from work, I'm usually all wound up, so I had some trouble getting to sleep. And I woke up in the middle of the night--not with theological insights running through my head--but with a coughing fit. Y'see, I've had a low burn cold for about the past week. It's an odd cold. Maybe not a cold at all, just sort of a viral infection. My eyes are reddish and when I wake up in the morning they're glued shut with mucous. And, I've had that neuralgia (that all over achy-ness and feeling of malaise) that goes with having a cold. Of course, all that work and so little sleep hit me like a truck. So my day off on Friday I spent the day sleeping and feeling awful, and I had a fever and chills.

So yesterday morning, feeling a little bit better but not by much, I went into work at 10 a.m. On my way in, I met one of the more eccentric colleagues, Steve from the Plumbing Department. Steve spent the 1960s living in Greenwich Village. He claims to have taken a ride on the Magic Bus and sat next to Bob Dylan in a dive bar on St. Mark's Place while Bob wrote the lyrics to "Positively Fourth Street" on a napkin. What makes Steve really interesting is he looks kind of like an older guy who works in the Plumbing Department of Ho(t)me(n) Depot: conservative haircut parted on the side, wire framed glasses, clean shaven.

I had just punched in when I ran into Steve. I wished him good morning and he asked how I was doing after inventory, when he had also worked. I told him about how I had been fighting a cold, and after inventory, I definitely thought I was losing that battle.

"Uh oh," said Steve, "I hope you don't have The Cold That Kills."

Steve told me that there's this strain of the cold going around that killed nineteen people in the midwest. He told me that if I got a fever, I should go to the doctor immediately, because that's the sign of The Cold That Kills.

And I had a fever the day before.

Now, my healthplan doesn't kick in until I've worked at Ho(t)me(n) Depot for ninety days, which will be November 21st. I'll probably have succumbed by then. O how bitterly ironic!

Now don't you fret that this SingleTails turn into some goopy Oh-Woe-Is-Me weblog. I don't have time for that. I work tomorrow, and on Tuesday I have off, but I'll probably see if I can do a Hard Labor Ready gig, and Wednesday I'll need to start in on preparations for my Thanksgiving dinner. If I live that long.

I hope to meet the end with grace and dignity. There's only a couple of things I feel bad about. One is that off all things, it's the common cold that will do me. How humbling. And of course the other thing is the fact that my final days of life will be spent having a cold. Sheeesh.

Oh. And if we should cross paths, let's not kiss on the mouth. I have no interest in taking anyone with me.


Anonymous said...

Hey Drew! Take care of you ... hope to continue to read your blog many but many yeras ahead! I love it; it's very interesting.
Un admirateur de Montréal!

beaver4 said...

Too much handshaking at Homo Depot and not enough hand washing. Get a big bottle of inexpensive germ-X hand sanitizer at Walmart. Fill a small bottle and use it often at work. If you live through this one, it will reduce the number you get after this one. Get a flu shot if you haven't already. Everyone who deals with the public should get one.