Monday, February 23, 2009

Tussionex Haze

Every year I get a nasty cough. It makes me sound like I've been smoking 7 packs a day, despite the fact that I've never smoked a cigarette in my life. It keeps me awake at night, it keeps Todd awake at night. It makes strangers cower and cover their mouth and nose. It lasts for weeks, even months if left untreated. There is nothing available over the counter that can even touch it. The only thing that works is a wonder drug called Tussionex.

Tussionex is only available by prescription, and the "do not operate anything remotely resembling machinery" warning on the label should be taken very seriously. In other words, this liquid gold will mess your shit up.

There was a time, years ago, when I took it before I went to work. I had just started working for the gigantic insurance company, and caught my semi-annual-chronic-cough about five minutes after I started. I didn't feel comfortable taking a sick day so soon after starting the new job. I took a swig of Tussionex before I left the house, then a few hours later I fell asleep in a meeting. Feel asleep. Dozed off. I was leaning over my notepad resting my head on my left hand. The hand covered my eyes from everyone else sitting at the table. I felt my head bob, and I started awake. I looked around the room, completely paranoid that others knew that I had dozed off. They didn't appear to. I rubbed my eyes and tried once again to focus on the meeting, as my brain felt like it was replaced with styrofoam.

Today I stayed home from work with a fever, the cough, and an unbearable headache that can only be explained as my skull must have been left in the dryer for just a bit too long. I keep a stash of Tussionex on hand for the times when the cough acts up again, and when I feel it coming on I'll do a shot of it before I go to sleep.

But never in the morning.

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