I have been so sick for the last month. Actually was sick, got well, then a week and a half ago got sick again. Some kind of viral respiratory infection. Any kind of activity brings on coughing and quickly leaves me exhausted. All the normal aches and pains are magnified. Depression is at its strongest when all your body systems are running low.

Coughing, hacking, wheezing, mentally confused, and physically fatigued.

Thought I’d recovered enough to work last Friday. It was a bad mistake. Three hours in, the coughing returned. Five hours in I lost my voice. End of the day I was so tired it was difficult to hold my head upright.

I guess “it” has been “going around” this year. Probably caught the pestilence from one of those infectious Petri dishes known as students. Did you know that the average 5-year-old catches a cold ten times a year? After each cold, the child’s immune system is stronger. And somewhere another elderly teacher bites the dust.

The Doctor gave me codeine and guaifenesin (Mucinex) cough syrup but since it is viral and I am not bedridden, there’s nothing more he’ll do. I suppose if it goes into pneumonia he’ll have more he can do for me. Just checked the bottle labels and my Tylenol #3 contains 30 mg codeine and the cough syrup is 100 mg per dose – and I have been dosing very heavy. My chest feels like I broke some ribs. I may have to ditch the codeine for dextromethorphan. Not as effective but maybe a less depressing high.

My wife came down with it as well. She went off to the Dr. Who convention this weekend without me and just sitting through movies and discussion panels exhaust her. Called to tell them she’ll miss Friday and Monday and it took an act of God to get any refund on the room at all.

She talked to a nurse practitioner over the phone and got the same cough syrup, albuterol, and an antibiotic in case her phlegm becomes colored. Phlegm with a pronounced color is a sign of bacterial infection, possibly pneumonia, which she has had before. (I haven’t.) Clear or slightly beige phlegm is viral and antibiotics won’t touch it. Being a nurse who works there, I guess they trust her more than her husband. Also maybe they are worried about having her miss work. My job is of no economic import to them.

Unless you want to crawl around in the dank and mildewed recesses of my currently conflicted and absurd psychology, stop reading now. It is mostly about how sorry I feel for myself.

So I figured I’d just post another whine-on-line.  I have nothing but time on my hands. I just don’t feel like doing anything else. I have no energy. I have a half dozen posts in my drafts bucket including a couple I posted and pulled. (I kicked myself the next day after posting and then again even harder after pulling. Twice the kicking is twice the fun?) I really don’t want to post a bunch of “Glory Days” posts about past adventures when I could walk up mountains, run all day, and make love all night. However, living in the present doesn’t feel like an option.

In intermittent moments of clarity when my brain is not clogged by fatigue, codeine,

Confessions of an English Opium Eater by Thomas De Quincey

and booze, I can see stuff that needs to be reworked or not posted at all due to “TMI” issues. It seemed entertaining at the time of writing but I am a horrid judge of social appropriateness and will tie my stomach up in knots over it once I’m out of the “writing zone”.  To crop, to pixilate, to not even mention some events, is wrapped up in other-acceptance v. self-acceptance. I feel like a coward if I do and an exhibitionist if I don’t.

Not used to that conflict. I hate the former in myself more than anything else. Why do I suddenly fear to be the latter? Nothing I do or say here is aimed at anyone or has any larger purpose, it is just thrown out there to read or ignore. But then I suddenly feel like Aya in Boogiepop… I can’t allow anyone to hate me.

There’s also a touch of evangelism in it. Maybe a non-anime person will come to love anime because of what I post. I cultivate viewers well beyond the anime subculture. Maybe a textile impaired person will appreciate the nudie lifestyle and try it out because of a post. Or at least not vapor lock the next time that see a nude person enjoying being nude. Both IMHO, outstanding results. But with my brain tied up in knots right now, simply expressing the joi de vive of an activity is lost in the weeds somewhere. A dark voice tells me to delete the entire Naturist category off my home page.

I am hoping it is just the virus and the drugs. I will not allow the closet to return.

Even my “normal” postings about anime and such have lost out. Lately, I’ve just been reposting (and pulling for lack of views) other people’s stuff and my own material has no depth or complexity. Dreck! When my lungs recover I may have to start smoking (now legal!!!) pot. Maybe it will loosen some creative juices up. Booze is no good. It makes it too difficult to find the keys.

This is a pitiful condition to exist in. I don’t know what to do for it except to plow on. Perhaps I’ll die from this diseased state (very unlikely) and my problems will be solved. Hoping that just getting well again will let the fearless me that I once loved to emerge again.

I’m sorry Irina, I am an absolute failure. After a couple of drinks, I just let go and make an ass out of myself (in a completely nonaggressive and harmless way). More than that and I worship the porcelain throne.