Sunday, 25 July 2010

Man Flu

As I hinted at yesterday, I now have a full-blown case of "man-flu".

Symptoms: slight irritation of the throat, weakness of leg muscles and severe fatigue.

The former could just have been down to excessive readings of The Gruffalo or Tiddler to my son, spiced up with zany accents that strain my delicate vocal chords.  But even overdosing on Tyrozets like they were Smarties and gargling salt water hasn't helped much.

Granted my muscles in this state are comparable to most office workers' but when carrying a toddler and pushchair up and down flights of stairs all day you really feel it.

The latter completes the hat-trick and allows me to justifiable call all emergency lines, shuffle pitifully to the nearest shop for armloads of Lemsip, and fall asleep whenever released from childcare for 5 minutes by my wonderful wife.

Now I do feel feverish which reminds me to eat as much as possible - unlike the worst cliche I've ever heard: "Feed a cold: starve a fever."

That's advice that I heard a lot from many different sources in childhood.  Advice that could kill you!  Even at a very early age I thought it tricky advice to make use of: how on earth do I tell a cold from a fever?!

Only many years later did I hear an explanation that made any sense at all: that thecliche I'd heard was an oft mis-quoted one.  The real version is, allegedly: "Feed a cold to STAVE OFF a fever".  Well, that makes much more sense, doesn't it!

And people wonder why I am slightly suspicious or sceptical of common advice!  It's got to make sense people!

I'll quickly close with 5 signs that a careful observer might have realised I was ill today:
1) My hair had that immoveable patch of bedhead from not being subject to a morning shower
2) I took the lightweight Maclaren buggy out for my walk with my son today rather than the larger all-terrain one
3) My "five o'clock shadow", often more a two- or three-day shadow, completely blurs the borders of sideburns and stubble.
4) My shorts and t-shirt combo are just a little too optimistic for today's weather - perfect for yesterday's conditions and clearly the first items I could drag on today.
5) Stumbling slowly through the park, using my son's buggy as a zimmerframe, swigging a bumper bottle of Lucazade - sure, it might be no better than sugared water, but when I'm ill I'll take even psychological factors that might improve my health (it wasn't just me who received Lucazade as a child whenever he was ill, was it?)

So yes, man flu makes me not so much lazy as efficient, conserving energy better than any left-wing recycler (who is after all completely wasting their time, as our councils are too inefficient for effective recycling - would love to be proved wrong on that point).

Off to bed now - 7.30pm is the new midnight.

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