Living Wright: Flu overcomes all precautions
BY JASON ASHLEY WRIGHT World Scene Writer
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
1/29/13 at 7:44 AM
Go to Jason Ashley Wright's BlogOriginal Print Headline: Flu overcomes all precautions
I can now scratch "have the flu" off my bucket list.
Not that influenza was seriously on such a list, which is mostly reserved for musicians and exotic locales I've never seen in person.
But a couple times last week, I thought I was closer to kicking a bucket than I've been in a long while. Granted, I was a bit paranoid, having recently re-watched the second season of "Downton Abbey." Poor Lavinia. I had to stop and watch an entire season of "Golden Girls" on DVD to keep from automatically hearing the "Downton" theme song in my head each time I coughed.
As I continue my recovery, now to the tune of "Thank You for Being a Friend" grinding away in my subconscious, I'm taking extra precautions to keep from getting sick again - perhaps too many.
Ironically, I wrote about fending off cold and flu a few days before getting sick.
One of the big things I remember from that story regarded hand-washing, at which I'm proud to say I excel. For a while now, after drying my hands, I've plucked an extra paper towel from the dispenser to open the door - because I know not everyone washes his hands before exiting.
Still, I got sick - a gross cough, fever up to 101.9 for three days, chills, sweats, dizziness. And I count myself among the luckier ones, as some folks have had much worse symptoms for longer.
So I'm stepping up my anti-germ game by following all hand washes with a pump or two of hand sanitizer - even though it usually dries my hands out by day's end. But I think it's an appropriate safeguard.
Ditto for not kissing anyone. Several of my female friends like to give a hello and/or goodbye peck, with two or three usually aiming for the lips. Personally, I think this should be outlawed from Nov. 1 to April 30. Possibly as early as Oct. 1, seeing as how that's the early start of flu season.
Do they make anti-bacterial lip balm? Listen up, ChapStick. Maybe they could do that and fortify it with zinc and vitamin C or whatever else is in Zicam.
Speaking of that, Zicam should be added to the water like fluoride, so we'd all have healthy teeth and better immunity. Of course, I've been saying the same thing about Prozac for nearly a decade, but I can't get city officials on board with me.
Otherwise, I'm just not venturing out much except for the grocery store, where I stocked up on nothing but healthy items this weekend - apples, grapes, berries, spinach, anything that Dr. Oz has ever said in the same breath as "antioxidant."
But what do you do when someone wants to shake your hand? That should be outlawed simultaneously with kissing. Can't we just bow a little at the waist and smile?
Last week, I thought about telling a person who extended his hand to me, "Sorry, you don't want to shake that." But I've said that before to someone, and he never spoke to me again. Well, that's not true; but he's always eyed me with greater suspicion than the average passerby does.
It's not comfortable, but I'm seriously contemplating a face mask. That seems a tad overkill-ish, though. It's probably safe enough to just eat healthy, keep our hands to ourselves and, at the first sign of a cold, call your doctor. You might also want to update your Netflix queue with comedies vs. period British dramas about the flu pandemic.