Saturday, June 01, 2013

Allergic to Life

One thing I had forgotten about living in America in spring is that everything is trying to kill me. The things trying to kill me were not making any small attempt at it either, but rather they launched a full-on frontal assault. I was reading some article on allergies, which said (all rather matter-of-factly), "It's no wonder that pollen bothers people, just look at it. Here you can see it is like a spiny urchin, the perfect shape for doing what it needs to do to successfully allow itself to replicate and for being a great irritation."

All I could think was that the flowers, trees, and green growing things could all go fuck themselves, and I suppose that was exactly what they were doing. I was riding cross country during the biggest vegetative bukkake season, and with or without my consent, I was going to join in it, play my little part, and suffer for those sadistic pollinating monsters whether I liked it or not. I suffered.

My eyes watered, my nose was clogged, my lungs felt like they were filled with hot coals. Finally, I broke down and took something over the counter for the allergies, only to discover I had taken the wrong thing, so needed to take something else. All through it my eyes watered, my nose ran, my head ached, and I was treated to a couple of blinding migraines for  my trouble. The Boy and I drove cross country to Vermont for the graduation of a cousin, making a pit stop in Ohio. 

"Got to get back to it," kept running through my head as we neared Kent State, which was our actual Ohio destination. With my love scheduled to take a test, and me scheduled to take in the local Starbucks, I sat for six hours working away, sniffing, sneezing, eyes watering, head ringing, coughing, sneezing, coughing, dripping, snorting drugs, popping pills, and just wishing to move to a planet without growing things because I hated all growing things and their annual need to reproduce. The girl at the counter in Ohio was very friendly. 

"Oh, now, are you all right?" she asked as I sucked in gigantic balls of phlegm out of my throat to keep them from sliding into my lungs. 

"It's just allergies." 

"Oh yeah, allergies. They are just terrible aren't they? I heard on the news the pollen count in Ohio today is a nine. And, you know, the highest is a ten. It's pretty bad out there today for some folks I guess. Well, here you go honey," she smiled and handed me my coffee. 

Fuck you, just fuck you, fuck you, fuck you, fuck you. "Thanks," I said, picking up my giant coffee and going up the stairs to try to get comfortable to work. Eventually I had to move out of the soft chair and into a hard wooden chair, which helped a bit. The problem with my allergieswhen they reach nuclear levels of radioactive, pollinated overpenetrationis that I get sensitive to everything. It moves past just the basic day-to-day of pollination and into a constant barrage of everything. Dust, mold, sunlight, purple, you name it and I become sensitive to it during allergy season. I couldn't sit in the chair because it was made of fabric and so probably had a great deal of dust buildup, making it highly uncomfortable as a place of sitting.

Eventually we drove out of Ohio. The change in allergy medicine helped, aside from turning me completely narcoleptic. The graduation was attained on time, and we drove and drove and drove, until, after a short family visit, we were watching the sun set over our little house, watching the dog run around her yard to make sure everything was in place, watching the trees swish, sway, and drop more and different kinds of pollen, watching my glass of wine empty, watching the sun rise, watching Chicago rising up in front of me as a commuter train approached, until finally, finally, finally, life was beginning to become something like normal. 

There was no pause, though, as with a short time for breathing, and within a few days of returning I'd be on the road again, this time to my wayward Chicago home, to my couch, to Young Kubrick, and the Bard, and the Electrician, to the kinkfest that I was about to receive. Unlike the saturation of allergy season that had been thrust upon me whether I liked it or not. Memorial Day weekend was very much looked forward to and appreciated as a chance to get away.

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