After being sick for almost an entire week, the Peanut is back to her normal, boisterous self.
I, on the other hand, feel like death warmed over. A bad case of the flu and the onset of allergy season have served to create a perfect storm of incapacity. Unfortunately, I took two days off from work in the past week to care for my ailing daughter so now I'm forced to suck it up and suffer through the pain.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not one of those whiny men who snivel and whimper whenever they get sick. However, when it comes to the flu and allergies, I'm not the toughest guy on the planet. Especially not in comparison to my ancestors.
See, I am the modern descendent of a tough farming family who, for thousands of years, tended the fields in Korea with nothing more than a toothpick and a mangy dog.
My father has often regaled us with stories of living for days off
nothing but tree roots and raw eggs. When he was young, his parents told him school was no longer necessary because he was going to live the rest of his life as a farmer. Whenever he protested, his parents beat him. One day, he decided to run away and never looked back. Thus he began his life as a street urchin. Many nights, he
would often sleep outside in the fields with his cousin. The two of them would
huddle together as snow fell all around them. To this day, the man is strong as an ox and as tough as nails.
Me? I ain't that tough. However, I DO know that I've got a high threshold for pain. Once, when I got an incredibly bad case of tennis elbow, I was STILL able to put on my v-neck sweater and pull the top down on my convertible. That's right, motherfuckers! By myself!
Ok, so I'm not that tough.
I only eat raw eggs when they're on top of my steak tartare. I get sick at least 4-5 times every year. And the day that I sleep in the fields will be the same day that Frette comes out with a 10,000-thread count sleeping bag made out of a goose's pubic fur.
The realization that I have personally destroyed the survival
instincts of my Korean ancestors in less than a single generation is not lost
on me. As I was telling my personal food taster the other night, I can't help it. Like Jay-Z, I'm just a "product of my environment."
The most symbolic aspect of my lack of toughness is the fact that I am the only member of my family who gets allergies. I never had them growing up but, over the past 5 years, I've become a congested and sniffling mess. My nose drips like Robert Downey, Jr. at a house party with Kate Moss.
And as much as the flu is beating me into submission, it's really the allergies that are kicking my ass. According to my doctor, I'm pretty much allergic to EVERYTHING: mites, mold, pollen, trees, grass, cat dander and horses. It is the running family joke that a man who comes from a long line of farmers is allergic to trees and grass.
Are there any medical professionals out there? Does anyone know what would happen if I mixed Scotch, TheraFlu, Allegra-D, Nasacort, Emergen-C, Airborne, chicken noodle soup, and ginseng tea all together?