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The Moment Of Infection


It’s not often I can pinpoint the precise moment that my immune system issues the orders to attack a foreign virus that has invaded my body. I was brought up to think of my immune system as an army with the white blood cells acting as soldiers, battling to destroy an enemy force. I guess the reality isn’t much different from that analogy and I still think of things that way.

So I’ve just come home from a hard day in the office staring at my dual 21 inch monitors at lines of code and I sit down on my sofa. I look over to my kitchen and spy a box of Kellogs Crunchy Nut Cornflakes and I simply can’t resist.

I’m on my feet in seconds. I’m pacing purposefully over to the counter. In the blink of an eye I’ve got a bowl out from the cupboard and in a move perfected by hours on the training ground I’ve started to pour the cereal into the bowl. I breathe lightly and turn to my right. Another quick hand movement and a spoon is in my hand. Squatting low I open the fridge, reach in and snatch the milk out in a blur. I slowly open the milk and begin to pour, savouring the moment and the sound of cold milk on dry corn flakes. I return the milk to the fridge and move back over to my sofa and sit down.

So as I’m about half way through the cereal I get this nasty taste and sensation in the back of my throat. It’s a feeling I’ve known so well over the years and I recognise it in an instant. It’s the signal that I’m about to get a cold. There’s nothing I can do, in a few hours the glands in my neck will be swollen and sore and I’ll have a thumping headache.

Cut to an hour or so later and this is exactly the case. By the morning (after a rough night) my eyes feel like they literally want to explode out of my head. Despite the fact that this might make an entertaining picture, I take asprin to calm it all down. And call work for a sick day. I can’t remember the last time I’ve taken one (no, my memory is not affected, I just never take sick days).

Still, that was Wednesday and I’m feeling almost back to my normal self today. Getting a cold isn’t very interesting but it was strange to feel a switch flick in my body from being fine to knowing I was fighting an infection of some sort. Weird…

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Creator of John's Background Switcher. Scotsman, footballer, photographer, dog owner, risk taker, heart breaker, nice guy. Some of those are lies.

4 Comments Join the Conversation

  1. Pinpointing the exact moment of infection isn’t the weird thing…the weird thing is, who the heck pours cereal like that? What are you, some kind of Cereal Ninja or something?

    I’m picturing you standing in your kitchen empty handed saying, “This cereal is delicious” and I say, “You’re not eating cereal”. I look up and see you standing there as if you haven’t moved, only now you’re chowing down the cornflakes. With a smirk you say, “Oh…aren’t I?” and walk away laughing.

    That’s why you got sick right there – because you’re so smug.


  2. As per bloody usual – Natalie makes an attempt at being funny but falls flat on her face.

    I mean, it’s funny to me, but…well, you know.


  3. I thought you did rather well actually, exactly on my wavelength. I thought writing in a Tom Clancy stylee would make something rather dull more interesting. I found it funny at least!


  4. See, you get it, I get it…it takes a special kinda someone to laugh at that kind of stuff. And by “special” I mean “needs to wear a helmet on the playground/is a danger to themselves and others” kind of special.


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