Sniff

I blame the bloke I sit next to at work. Within about three minutes of sitting down in his general vicinity there was a theme song going through my head:


"He coughs, he wheezes,
He smells and spreads diseases..."


Which is, of course, my roundabout way of saying that the bastard has gifted me his cold. That shouldn't be very surprising in the great scheme of things: I've gone back to working in an office with other people. Other people are germ magnets and bogie factories. Much though they should all be hermetically sealed in plastic bags and thrown out of moving trains, this leads to the spread of disease. The black rat during the middle ages has nothing on your standard cubicle farm office environment.

Now I'm not one who subscribes to the 'Man Flu' hysteria favoured by so many people of the trousered persuasion. What I get are mostly colds, not flu. If you can struggle your way into work, plonk yourself down at your desk and spend the next seven and a half hours producing sticky mucus, you don't have flu, no matter how often you tell people you have. You are what is known in medical circles as 'an lying bastard'.

If you actually had flu, you wouldn't be able to get your sweat-drenched, shivering arse out of bed, let alone drive to the office. Your limbs would have the consistency of slimy porridge and weigh about the same as a medium-sized hippopotamus. If he had flu, Conan the Barbarian couldn't clamber his way out from beneath his duvet and into his reasonably priced Reno Fuego. Nor would he lay there, making big puppy eyes at Red Sonioa so she'll nip down to the shops to bring him back a packet of Maltesers and a big yellow bottle of Lucozade. No, he's going to be wondering if it was the bloke he robbed the Serpent King's tower with that gave him the dreaded lurgie, and whether he should rip the bastards bowels out with a toasting fork as a thank you. Just as soon as he's finished throwing up.

My main problem at the moment is not so much the cold on it's own, it's how it interacts with the demonized labyrinthine mess three doses of surgery have left my sinuses in. It probably doesn't help that last time I was in the Doctor's Torture Chamber to have my nose hoovered out -- seriously, they do it every other week for about a month and a half after you have the surgery, I won't go into the revolting details, but you're unlikely ever to look at a pair of needle-nosed pliers in the same way ever again -- I was put back on antibiotics . Again. And not the normal stuff either: they were all out of that so I was sent packing with the double-strength horse pills they had malingering about at the back of the drugs cabinet, and a £28.00 bill instead. So not only are they the worlds most expensive chunks of cultivated mould, I need a knife and fork to eat the bloody things.

They make me feel bloody awful as well. I don't like antibiotics. I do not like them with a drink, I do not like them in the sink, I do not like them up the stairs, I do not like them with beard hairs, I do not like those nasty pills, the bloody things make me feel ill. And if they're so damn good for you, how come the wheezer has managed to give me his cold? Eh?*

I'm hoping that 2007 is going to be a much better year than this one has been. I'm thinking of sending 2006 back to the shop with a stiffly worded letter of complaint. I seem to have spent the whole thing with horrifically nasty stuff going into, or coming out of my nose.

* And no, you're not allowed to get all snooty about bacterial infections being different from viruses. It's a rhetorical question.