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"I remain no more prepared to battle The Bug than I ever was …"

The Muse had plans for us to meet-up after work and attend the annual Candlelight Walk, to stroll down Golden's Washington Street, sing a few carols, and maybe grab a bite after, but I'd woken with a sore throat and a fuzzy head. I promised to lie low close to the bed and assess how fit I felt nearer the end of the day. I slept a bit and wandered around the place feeling distinctly displaced before texting her around four to report that I still felt shaky. Nothing especially alarming, just a touch of The Bug, though no Bug was likely involved. Maybe the sore throat resulted from breathing incredibly arid cat fur-infused air. I blamed The Bug but quickly recovered from what first felt like a scare. I wasn't scared for long. I'm blessed with good health. I rarely feel in any way ill and perhaps because of that, I can't seem to very easily tell if I'm ailing. My normal ranges over a wide variety of states from manic to despondent, but I do not usually describe any of them as sick. When I finally, rarely, ascribe my state to the influence of The Bug (not, notice, A Bug, but The Bug), I'm usually about half a day away from full recovery. So far.

Thanks to my nurse practitioner's prescription pad, my bathroom counter's suddenly full of plastic pill bottles, each with its own regimen printed on its label.
Each of these pills seem more focused upon preventing than treating any Bug, and each wants its moment of attention through the day, two of them twice, in annoyingly inconvenient ways. One wants taking a half hour BEFORE a meal, a point in time that I can very rarely determine until about a half hour AFTER I've eaten. Another insists that I swallow it after rising, so there I am at 3am fumbling for a rice grain-sized tablet which sometimes slips between a tooth refusing to swallow. If The Bug ever got me good and I felt the desperate need to consult with my nurse practitioner, I feel confident that she'd find time in her busy schedule to see me within the following week or two. The life cycle of a typical The Bug being more like three days, I cure myself before any professional intervention could occur, which has always been fine with me. So far.

I know where all this existing seems to be heading, though, and I suspect that a time will come when a genuine The Bug will finally get to have her way with me. Unlike that time I boldly ate a raw red tide mussel straight off a wave-swept rock, feeling every bit the naturalist before a genuine The Bug got me, I will probably not then recover overnight sipping warm weak tea. When The (Real) Bug gets me, I expect that it will lay me low for more than an odd day or two and there will likely be little anyone can do. By then, my inexperienced aging immune system will be going it alone against a conditioned prize fighter, and I will take a real beating, if I recover at all. My former masteries of my physiology will have reduced to barely shadows of their former selves and I'll be easy prey. The Bug seems out to get me and I suspect that he eventually will get me, and good. But I've forestalled this end. So far.

Like in software development, most Bugs and not really Bugs at all, but under appreciated features. Some can be fixed while others receive work-arounds and still others become mildly inconveniencing features of the final product. Most of The Bugs invading the human condition become mildly inconveniencing features, neither receiving or really requiring any intervention beyond a blessedly brief radical acceptance. They are the way of this world, and while some seem to prevent some planned peak experience, like an opportunity to stroll down the main street carrying a candle and singing carols in the dark, most come and go about a consequently as some dog that never musters much more than a half-hearted bark. I woke this morning without any evidence of a sore throat. I'd already forgotten the discomfort and brief displacement I'd experienced. I remain no more prepared to battle The Bug than I ever was and The Bug seems no more threatening that he's ever been. So far.

©2019 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved

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