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Well we’re almost through February and I’ve managed to not catch the flu.

This is good not only for me but also my wife as I am the whiniest sick person in the history of the world. Even in terms of men being whiny when they are sick, I take the largest participation trophy of all time.


Usually when I’m sick, I beg for death and emit a low whine that can be heard not only by people, but dogs up to eight miles away from my apartment. If your dog seems nervous for a week in December, that’s me.

About three years ago, my friend came to my house with the flu, got me sick, and I missed a week and a half of work. I couldn’t sleep more than an hour or two before I had to drain the ectoplasm-like fluids that built up in my eyes, nose, throat and, for some reason, the bottoms of my feet.

The good news is I finally quit smoking. The moment I was not dead enough to go outside and smoke, there I was, sucking down Pall Mall lights in the cold Colorado rain. I finally decided that was enough. Smoking when you are sick seems like a prime way to usher in a bad case of emphysema, and I’d literally rather be set on fire. It’s a much faster, less painful way to die.

The bad news is that particular plague-like illness made me even more paranoid. I still won’t let my friend touch the ice cube trays. Yes, I’m talking about you, Karen.

I was reading Centers for Disease Control statistics on this year’s flu season, not because I’m particularly interested in statistics, but out of a sense of future nostalgia. I’m sure the president will defund the CDC in the coming months to pay for a private golf course for Nazi youth in need of putting lessons. You know I’m right.

So I’m getting in my CDC time while I still can. I’ll probably watch PBS later today, as well. I recommend you do the same, unless, that is, you like putting lessons for Nazis.

Anyway, I got my first flu shot in quite some time a few months ago. It cost $40 because I’m one of the 27 million or so Americans with no health insurance. Oddly enough, the chain pharmacy advertised them as being free. Silly me for believing a television commercial.

I’d like think that the flu shot is what kept me from getting sick this year, but we all know that’s horse shit. The flu shot is just how they get the microchip inside you. Damn, there goes that paranoia again.

It’s more likely that the deep slush of nervousness and anxiety that permeate my being cause flu viruses to get depressed and kill themselves once they enter my body.

Something like this:

“Hello, I am Influenza Virus A. I’m the destroyer of worlds, conqueror of nasal passages, gunker of eyes! Tremble before me! Know my power! And now I enter into John Bear, freelance writer, smart ass and about to miss two weeks of work! I — Oh my god. This guy is so nervous. How does he even get anything done?! I’m not feeling so well! I can’t go on! Goodbye cruel world! Ahhhhh! ….”

Influenza Virus A leaps to its death from the back of my tonsils.

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