Despite having an immune system that puts the U.S. National Guard to shame (I know what you’re thinking–what doesn’t put the U.S. National Guard to shame), sometimes a virus permeates my defenses, and I come down with a cold. From the skipping work good to the incapacitated in bed bad of being sick, there are some activities that I think we all love to participate in during times of sickness:
- Perfecting Your Disgusting Cough: There are few things more satisfying than letting loose a with a hacking cough that has the healthy, Vitamin C freaks around you clutching their hand sanitizer like rosary beads. You need to really dig—below the coating of mucus in your throat—deep into your lungs to summon a really nasty, thick pulmonary cough. It helps to warm up with a phlegm-bubbling throat clearing or two.
- Breaking Your Old Record for Biggest Pile of Used Kleenex: My current record is 37. There’s something impressive and comforting about accumulating a mountain of used tissues. …It’s less fun when you throw them away and discover some of them were still damp.
- Hard Candy as a Throat Lozenge: …What? Jolly Ranchers aren’t a recommended way to heal a sore throat? Antiseptics are great, but the awful thing about cough drops is “cherry-flavored” really means “disgusting medicine that happens to be red.” Jolly Rancher and Robetussin should join forces—they could change the world.
- Giving Up on Your Appearance: Being sick isn’t just a great excuse to get out of work or social functions you didn’t want to attend, it’s a great explanation for your greasy hair and holy (not a typo) sweatpants. Like it isn’t bad enough your nose is red and puffy and you skin could best be described as “sallow,” if ever there’s a time to not care about how you look, this is it.
- Being Horrified by Your Voice: Maybe you saw Easy A recently and you were curious about what you would sound like if you had the sexy, raspy voice of Emma Stone. …Only instead of “sexy” and “raspy,” you’ve unwittingly discovered you sound like a 13-year-old boy going through puberty or a sorority girl trying to do a fake man voice on a prank call and failing terribly. It’s just not cute.
- Code of Conduct: One of the fun things about being sick is there are so many decisions for how to behave. When you feel a cough coming, do you want to do it into your elbow? Do you want to cough into your fist and lean over like your lungs are leaving your body? When you blow your nose, which nostril do you want to hold closed? When you inevitably look in the Kleenex afterwards, how much will the color of what’s inside resemble the walls of a baby’s room whose parents didn’t want to find out the sex? So many options!
- Avoiding People for their Own Good: Being sick is a great reason not to see people. You do that sneaky thing where you make them think you’re doing them a favor, too. “Man, I’d really love to do that with you, but I feel awful, and I just don’t want to get you sick… Maybe next time…” Or not.
- Reaching Out: Ironically, sometimes you use that, “I don’t want to get you sick,” line in the hope that someone will insist that he or she spend time with you. When you’re sick, you suddenly become incredibly lonely, and you just want people to hang out with you and all your
- Having an Excuse to Eat Whatever You Want: When you have a cold, you try to justify eating just about anything. “Are you eating brownies?” “Yeah, I read online they’re good for your sinuses. I just want to kick this cold…” Uh huh, that’s it.
- Milking It: Since I barely ever get sick, I like to really make it count. So, yes, that does entail me acting like a feeble old lady asking people to please do things for me in my small, sick voice. I’m not sorry. This only happens once a year, and I like to take advantage. Think of it as the extreme couponing of having a the common cold.
The next time you’re buried under a mountain of Kleenex having some healthy shmuck taking care of you–remember that you’re not alone.