I’m currently engulfed in what’s become my annual head cold. It’s all I can think about. These yearly colds are comparable to a few of my relatives – you never quite know when they’re coming and, when they do turn up, you’ll be put upon for 3 days to a week.
I feel hot, but don’t have a fever. I lie down, but can’t sleep. I’m functional, but my joie de vivre has taken an unauthorized leave of absence. Plans have been canceled; the chamomile tea binges are in full force; my ears, nose, throat, and taste buds have been violated. There are people who stoically suffer these kinds of snotty setbacks multiple times a year.
Yes, it’s true: I do love how deep and husky my voice sounds the day before hell breaks loose. But once the nasal congestion sets in, I avoid speaking as much as possible – it’s uncomfortable and it can lead to confusion. I once went to a bridal shower on the first day of a head cold, and when one of my bride-friend’s extended family members asked what line of work I’m in, she thought I said auditor instead of editor. For the rest of the shower, and at the following weekend’s wedding reception, there was little end to the tax references and “I better be careful about what I say around you” jokes. I didn’t correct her because she was always situated too far away from me (I certainly couldn’t upset my fragile, recuperating voice by shouting over all the racket); and I enjoyed being mistaken for an auditor. I’ve had a reputation for being a lot of things, but a math and numbers whiz isn’t one of them - it was then or never.
She later tried to set me up with a busboy. He was cute, but gave off the innocent/hypersensitive vibe of someone who wouldn’t be able to handle me in sickness or in health.