Tuesday, July 08, 2008


Last night was the worst night for sleep for me (and for Fred) in a long time. I haven't had any problem with hay fever in a while - knock wood. Fred's been sneezing and sniffling for a few weeks. Off and on. He won't take pills on a regular basis. So he takes an antihistamine,
feels better, stops and wonders why he's started sneezing again. It's just not in his nature to take pills regularly. It's in mine.

The whole night Fred kept knocking me and waking me up. I would have sworn that I hadn't even fallen back to sleep again, but apparently I immediately started snoring again - and again. He eventually got up and went to the couch for a while. As I lay there trying to find the magical position where the wouldn't make me snore, I felt that swelling and itching in the back of my throat and ear that I have come to know as that feeling of allergies.

When I went to the apotheek [pronounced ah-poe-take], or pharmacy, today, the woman told me that allergies are usually less when it's rainy. Last night was one of the wettest nights in a long time and it was the worst for me. So it might be your run of the mill hay fever, or hooikoorts [pronounced hoy-korts] or it could be a mysterious food allergy. In my sleepless, itchy, stuffy state last night, I came up with a theory. (That's the best time to come up with theories, in my opinion.)

We went to see a movie last night. We saw In Bruge. We both gave it two thumbs up, if you're keeping score at home. Anyway, I bought a medium box of popcorn and the girl told me that the large was the same price. I didn't ask why. I just got the large. And I ate the whole thing. Fred had a small handful just because. But I ate the entire, giant box of salt popcorn. It wasn't buttered like they do in the US. It was just salty. My lips felt like shoe leather when I was done, but I'd also bought a bottle of water. I always think of popcorn as an excellent source of fiber.

So my theory is that I had an allergic reaction to the gigantic amount of popcorn I ingested. (Of course I didn't have much dinner.) Sort of a stupid theory, but it's all I could come up with in that horrible state I was in at 3:30 am. I didn't feel right until about noon today, and I slept a bit in the afternoon.

I had hay fever for a couple of years in NYC. I'm a big proponent of drugs. I hate feeling like that. Runny eyes, sneezing and that itchy feeling in the back of my throat and in my ears? I'll take the drugs, please.

Fred really was a peach for putting up with me. I thought about moving myself to the couch, but I was too exhausted to move, and I couldn't imagine undertaking the process of finding a blanket and walking to the couch. It was too much for me.

So now I have drugs. I got everything I need for a good nights sleep tonight - I hope.


Mel said...

Actually, if one of your primary allergies is to some sort of mold spore, then you can expect damp weather to make the situation worse. Rain washes pollen out of the air but it increases mold growth.

Andy Baker said...

Thanks, Doc. I thought there might be a better explanation.

Anonymous said...

Dear andy,
I thought I might ask you, about the "alergy." When your lips felt like shoe laces, did they bend down a lot. And also, Is it possible to see signs the are siamese TRIPLETS. if you find a sign that shows 4 dead ends, i'll give you 20 bucks er, euro?

Anonymous said...

Jammer that you're not feeling so good, and can't enjoy this lovely weather we've been having...

I'm between you and Fred on this - I prefer not to take drugs unless absolutely necessary. But I don't see the point, say, of suffering from a headache if popping an aspirin will make it go away.

When it comes to hay-fever though, I'm afraid that it's all out chemical warfare. At the first sign of a sneeze in spring, I'm down to the doctors for a prescription. According to the doc, the tablets are more effective if you take them every day (even when you don't feel especially sneezy), and my experience sort of backs that up. So I do - from about May to October most years.


Andy Baker said...


My lips didn't feel like shoe laces, they felt like shoe leather, but I like the image of them bending down like shoe laces. I'm not sure about the signs being available in triplets or with four dead ends, but if I find one, I'm taking a picture and taking you up on it. In euros, since they're worth more than dollars.