A chat with it might go like this:
Me: Hey. Get up and fight disease, please.
My immune system: (long pause, while it thinks about it). Nah. Pass the remote. And would you mind bringing me a beer while you’re at it?But amazingly (for me), I haven’t been on antibiotics since Thanksgiving. That’s a month and a half of my immune system working. During the winter (it may actually be the first time this decade that I haven’t been popping antibiotics and codeine in December). Winter, traditionally, is the time my immune system hibernates.
My run of normal health is all the more amazing when one considers that during this run of the Seattle Schools Opera, my usual careful attention to exercising and eating fruits and vegetables and trying to get enough sleep has gone out the window. I’ve been subsisting on corn chips, peanut butter cookies from the Dahlia Bakery, and wine, all while chained to my computer until 1am. Weight loss I got from exercise and healthy livin’? 1 lb. Weight loss from cookies, chips, wine and once a week whacking other women with my hockey stick? 10 lbs. I’m not sure whether to be delighted or to scream with frustration. Frustration probably, because the fact that the treadmill and I haven’t been together much is showing up in my skating speed. I love being able to beat people to the puck, even if I can’t do much with the puck once I have it.
But… the honeymoon is over. Curly came down with something nasty, and shared, and my immune system seems to have suddenly realized that it had been steadily functioning for the last six weeks. It’s gone on total strike. My voice sounds like I smoke 6 packs of unfiltered cigarettes a day, and I have a hack to match. And because of the voice, I am in no position to conceal the issue from my mom, whose facial expression is one I've mentioned before: doomed baby harp seal. The Seattle Schools Opera has a run of two more weeks— with plenty of farce sure to be thrown in by all sides— and my immune system is heading for the couch with the remote now? I need two more weeks!
And maybe some soup.
The photos of baby harp seals are courtesy of babyharpseal.org. The clubbed seal is copyrighted by HSUS/Brian Skerry, 2005 and the other is uncredited. Don't club cute things to death, please. The food photo is a rice noodle stir fry with bok choi, shrimp, pork and lots and lots of garlic.