I hate that feeling you get when you know a cold, or its trendier cousin manflu, is about to whack you around the sinuses. That tickle or tingle, that second sense. You know you’re about to endure a week of coughing and headaches, a week of endless fountains of snot, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
I could have opened a snot shop this week, let me tell you. I’m no stranger to a runny nose as you know. In fact I may be the original post-nasal drip. But this week has been exceptional in the history of la cosa nostril. I have endured torrents of it. I sometimes wondered whether I might drown in it. I can categorically state that I have never been so pleased at the sight of a fresh twin pack of man-sized as I was on Sunday when the floods came.
This particular illness – more than a cold, less than proper flu, thankfully not the winter vomiting virus – is the worst I’ve had for at least ten years. I even had two days off work, which generally only occurs when I have one of my few remaining body parts removed or when I get made redundant. What’s most annoying on this occasion is that it’s my third – and by far the worst – bout of some kind of cold-like nasty in no more than a month.
It might even be the same illness, beaten back twice by my internal superbugs only to catch me the third time when a little sluggish after a late night. But I prefer to blame the filthy gays breathing at me, because it gives me the illusion of popularity. And yes, I have considered blaming the beard. (Resists urge to add: but she’s moving to Brighton.)
It’s clearing up now, anyhow. I was back at work today, in an office that sounded like episode one of Survivors only with better acting than Freema Agyeman. At least I now have plausible deniability when half the staff’s family Christmases are ruined (“Let it snot, let it snot, let it snot”). In any case I’ll probably be on cold #4 by the time I go back to work in January. I shall use my few precious moments of snotlessness to mount a dawn raid on Boots in preparation. When that tickle comes, by god I shall be ready for the onslaught. I’ll bottle it and sell it as spot cream.