If I had written my last post today, there would be another option: G) Spent the last several days staring into the jaws of death/suffered through my first bad cold in a very, very long time. I rarely get sick, which means I am a horrible sick person. A pathetic one. A whiny, achy, mopey, "I can't breathe" one, as evidenced in my "diary" of the last week.
Me, to my coworker: "I feel weird. I feel like I have something in my lungs."
He glances up. "Um ... air?"
I get home late from work, decide I'm going to sit on the couch juuuuust for a second before I go to the gym, and pass out. For, like, three hours.
It's master-of-the-obvious coworker's birthday, and his girlfriend has planned dinner at this restaurant at a casino. It's a good dinner full of lovely revelations, such as the fact that my friend was circumcised as a baby by Jackie Mason's cousin.
But in the car on the way home, I start whining that my throat itches. It's the cigarette smoke in the casino, they said, you're just not used to being around it. I agree, that makes perfect sense. So I drink some extra water when I get home, go to bed and dream of slot machines and Brad Pitt, just because.
I wake up before my alarm, which is never, ever a good sign, and my throat is on FIRE. I can't call in sick because ... actually, I can't remember now, that was three whole days ago and my brain has been drowning in mucus and phlegm since then, but there was some good reason why I had to go. So I do.
Me, to my coworker, about 2.1 seconds after I walk in the door: "So. I'm sick. Like, legitimately. My throat is killing me."
He glances up. "Maybe you have swine flu."
Me: "Maybe I ... OH, MY GOSH, WHAT IF I HAVE SWINE FLU?"
I Google swine flu symptoms. The checklist is very lame, it's like, you can't tell the difference between swine flu and regular flu, neither can the doctor without a lab test, blah blah blah. I skip down to the symptoms that require urgent medical attention.
Me: "Holy crap. Listen to this." (Pause.) "Are you listening?"
Him: "Yes, I'm listening."
Me: "What did I just say?"
Him: "You said are you listening."
Me: "OK, good. Thank you. So listen to this. It says confusion. It LITERALLY says confusion. CONFUSION! LISTEN TO ME. If I show ANY signs of confusion, you need to call the doctor, like, immediately."
He looks at me.
He looks at me some more.
Him: "Soooo ... I'm supposed to tell the difference between your normal confusion and your swine flu confusion how?"
Me: "I cannot believe I'm entrusting my life to you."
A few hours later.
Me: "Maybe I have strep instead."
A little while after that.
Me: "What about mono? I totally fell asleep the other night! Fatigue!"
This is all met by a lot of head-shaking.
Thursday morning, 3:30 a.m.
I wake up after an hour and a half and it feels like someone is stabbing me in the right side of my neck with one of those Ginsu knives. I cannot swallow at ALL, so I stand there in the dark and periodically spit into the bathroom sink. It's not melodramatic at all.
I happen to already be off these days, so ... lucky me! I get to die a thousand deaths on my couch without even taking time off work to do it!
My friend visits me on my deathbed to bring me some sustenance and some medicine. Also a National Enquirer.
I summon all of the strength I can muster to witness a pop culture perfect storm: Jon Gosselin on one channel and David Letterman's affair admission on the other, with my laptop on my stomach set to people.com. All of the excitement wipes me out, though, and I spend the next 10 hours asleep on the couch.
I've officially knocked off 11 percent of the DVR. I'm now caught up on The Biggest Loser, Project Runway, Modern Family and The Amazing Race. Left to go: Glee, the first two episodes of FlashForward, and the entire last season of 24.
I weigh myself and am highly annoyed to find the scale up 4 pounds since Tuesday. I thought you were supposed to LOSE weight when you were sick! I chalk it up to water retention from the sodium in all of the soup I've been eating, and conveniently disregard the pint of Ben and Jerry's Phish Food ice cream I've eaten in the last two days.
I do, however, wash my hair for the first time since Tuesday night. I consider this major progress.
Apparently not enough progress. Snot is pouring out of my body, and I'm almost done coughing up my left lung. I disgust nearly everyone who crosses my path, and I get kicked out of work an hour early.
I fall asleep for a couple of hours and wake up feeling like I've been hit between the eyes by the 7:27 p.m. Amtrak express. I turn to my last resort: Vick's Vapo Rub. I'm currently sitting on my couch, surrounded by a High School Musical tissue box, cherry cough drops and a very tall bottle of water, smelling like menthol, watching 27 Dresses. If anyone else is having a more glamorous Saturday night right now, I'd love to hear it.