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I have a cold. When I say that, right now, it comes out “I hab a code.”

Because I had whopping cough as a kid, my coughs resemble a bark. I was vaccinated for pertussis as a kid but got it anyway. I was out of school for six weeks in the third grade and I vividly remember my mom teaching me fractions by cutting up apples. I still see slices of apples when fractions appear, even in a recipe. I love math, FYI, and that is due in large part to my mom.

I have been trying to ‘treat’ my cold with a variety of over-the-counter meds. I went to Walgreens this morning in search of stronger solutions. The pharmacist was very helpful and concerned, especially after I coughed barked. I bought some Mucinex-D which used to be available only by prescription. I have had one good cough-free nap of about two hours. Considering my interrupted sleep last night, this was great. To buy the Mucinex-D I had to hand over my driver’s license and sign something on the little electronic machine that said I was sick and not intending to make methamphetamine out of these cold meds. (Actually, I asked what I was signing rather than digging out my reading glasses and I think I was fine with signing this.)

I am fine with medications that I need to sign for so that street drugs are harder to manufacture. I am fine with turning over my driver’s license. I am fine with medications moving from prescription to over the counter. I have had some chicken noodle soup. I have put Vicks VapoRub on just for nostalgia. I have slept in. I just wonder, in my somewhat foggy state, how did treating a cold get to be so complicated? I am rarely sick and probably not as patient with the recovery as I should be. I keep thinking maybe a different pill would be just what I need. Really.

I hab a code. Bark.

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