Tuesday, June 07, 2011

 Ah, yes, Springtime. When a young man's fancy turns to...AH-CHOO!!! AH-CHOO!!! AH-CHOO!!! AH-CHOO!!! Most people, when they see a grassy meadow or a clump of Shady Trees, think, "oh, how nice this is; I think I'll just lay on the grass, in the shade and take it easy". Me, I go running for cover. I face an opponent that I can't see. It's an airborne opponent, and I can't get away from it. When I used to live in North Idaho, Hayfever season, for me, ran from about Mid-April thru Mid-July. Down here on the Oregon Coast where the vegetation is much more lush, Hayfever Season is shorter (Mid-June thru Mid-July), but it's more intense with all of the plants blooming at once.

Pollen wreaks havoc with my system. It gets into the corners of my eyes, the eyes start watering, the nose starts running, my nasal cavities begin to burn, the body throws its mucous-producing capacity to High Overdrive, and before you know it, I'm a basket case. Several times during the last week, it's gotten so bad that I had to take a cloth, soak it in cold water, then cover my eyes and nose with it so I could breathe without any more pollen spores from getting in. That, after taking an anti-histamine which takes a couple of hours to take effect. By the time I remove the cold cloth from my face, I'm totally spent. I have no more bodily fluids to sneeze out, and the anti-histamine leaves me with a sort-of "stoned" feeling. Far out, man. The cold-cloth treatment cools me down; my Hayfever is just that--a fever--and the drugs kick in sooner or later.

I've tried every hayfever drug under the sun. It used to be easy to find what I needed, until all the Meth-cookers out there began buying up all the potent hayfever drugs to use in their cooking vats! So nowadays, in a lot of states, Sudafed and other such medications are kept behind a locked cabinet door. In Oregon, the only way I can get Sudafed is by prescription. So this is a situation where people who Need the Drug can't readily Get the Drug because of all the damn meth-heads out there! Luckily, I had a few days' worth of Sudafed from my last prescription (a year ago) and the pills appear to Still Be Potent. I've tried Claritin and all the other over-the-counter medications. Nothing Works. I need a good strong anti-histamine to dull my senses so I CAN'T sneeze. Either that or a detachable nose and sinus cavity!

When I'm in the middle of a hayfever attack, I know it's gonna last for at least another two hours. There used to be an old Dristan commercial that said something along the lines of, "Taking Dristan is like taking your Sinuses to Arizona!" Well, residents of Arizona, I'm sure you've got a good state, but I don't wanna go there 'cos I don't like Deserts! Sorry 'bout that. Sometimes the cool ocean breezes help during a hayfever attack, but there's beach grass on the Beach (a good place for Beach Grass, right?), and the last time I was at the Ocean during a hayfever attack, I still couldn't stop sneezing. Think of the effect on your body that sneezing 10 or 15 times in a minute can cause. I've literally thrown my neck out sneezing.

I'm not looking for any kind of grandiose degree of sympathy by posting this. I just want to make people out there realize that Hayfever is nothing to sneeze about! Hayfever can get serious; I've felt ill after my worst hayfever attacks. So what makes me sneeze? As near as I can tell, it's the pollen that escapes when Grass Grows Tall. My neighbors last year didn't mow their lawn until July, and I sneezed my head off! (Well, almost) So what was one of my biggest chores when I was a kid? You got it, Mowing The Lawn. I pay the neighbor kid to do that these days. Most of all, an acute Hayfever Attack makes me feel frantic, helpless and just really awful. People used to tell me that I would Outgrow my Hayfever. WRONG! My first hayfever attack was in 1964, when I was ten. Our family moved from a big house, near the lake, to the northern part of town, which at that time, contained a lot of large grassy fields. And I began sneezing my face off. That's what it felt like.

This is one case in which Manners are Not Needed. There are those who say "bless you" every time they hear someone Sneeze. Those are the people who will go hoarse if they're around me for five minutes of a hayfever attack. It truly is an Assault on the Senses.


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