Web Master Tucker Hottes fights ah-choos and the winter blues
No technology to battle the common cold
For the last couple of weeks, everyone in my section of the office has been shuffling around like the reanimated corpses in The Walking Dead. This is usually the case during winter, and although we’ve been hit with one of the mildest winters in memory, the germs have found no issue planting themselves firmly within the systems of most of my coworkers.
To make matters worse, our floor has been pegged at a sweltering 81 degrees for at least a week. We trudge around, sweat-soaked and miserable during the day, only to escape into cold weather outside. The shock to our system alone seems to be enough to force us into a perpetual foggy sleepiness. I’ve been battling off the worst effects for some time now, and I try to avoid over-medication when possible. These things typically run their course in due time, and in my experience the treatments are often worse than the unchecked ailments.
I used to pound Nyquil and the like at the first sign of a head cold creeping up, but after a while I realized the help getting to sleep wasn’t worth being completely useless the next morning. Hitting the medicine and then hitting the sack always results in a hangover rivaling a serious bender. I started to weigh the uncomfortable and fitful sleep against the total fog, general malaise, and dimly masked symptoms the next day. It didn’t really seem to matter, so I decided to eliminate the drugs.
I’m not sure what’s worse: this kind of systemic misery that lasts for weeks that we all seem to be undergoing, or the sort of acute, completely-disabled-for-a-few-days horrors that I’ve fortunately avoided recently. On one hand, it seems better to get the illness over and done with. Most days I’d trade endless sniffles and general ‘blah,’ but it does suck to feel like complete death. I’m also unsure if my healthy, un-addled mind would be able to handle the constant sickness and complaining surrounding me. I’m sure the only reason I can handle it now is through the dull filter of sinus congestion and the strange satisfaction that I’m not suffering alone.
This bizarre on-again, off-again winter makes me look forward even more to the warm, long days ahead.
Usually by this point, we’ve resigned ourselves to living under several inches of snow. The flashes of teasing warmth kill that resolve and just serve as a reminder of what we’re missing. It’s impossible for those of us who actually do enjoy the winter from time to time to indulge – you can’t bundle up and hit the slopes for some fun in the snow if there is no snow. Yes, I’ve done my fair share of 50-degree artificial skiing, but it just isn’t the same. For now, I’ll stockpile the tissues, keep a wary eye on the cough medicines, and count the days until I can start complaining about allergy season. It’s right around the corner, but I still prefer a stuffy head outside on the porch on a summer evening to a never-ending cold during this strange excuse for a winter season!