I’ve been neglecting my online home. There are towels on the floor, dead plants in the corners, a good inch of dust laying about on everything and I’m beginning to fear that I’d better come in and make it livable before appendage-less creatures and mice take it over as their own.

The plague is still lingering in our offline home, congested chests and feverish humans curling into thick blankets on any available soft surface near the television. We’ve watched more partial CSI episodes than I could ever imagine existed, gently tossing cold medications to one another between trips to the kitchen to retrieve hot toddies and cold treats. Erotic sighs stem from frozen fruit bars and hot hot water sliding down our inflamed throats. The house temperature is so cold then really really hot then icey cold again but never for the same two people at the same time and the thermostat wars ended in futility on day two. It’s been nearly three weeks and although the fevers have died down and the sinus pain is manageable without pharmaceutical assistance, the phlegmy coughing is our new Symptom Of The Week.

The Dog, she is some worried. She wanders from couch to couch nosing the humans, often curling up beside the least healthy among us. Late at night when we’re finally awake enough to discover that a bed would be a nicer place to spend the night, she curls up so close so she can feel our breathing throughout the night.

We could be infecting each other over and over, the probability of three different sicknesses brought into the Townhouse of Love and exchanged on hand towels and door knobs. I just started working with a new company in health care and my first week’s training occurred at the hospital and could have seen me tracking home some terrifyingly named viruses and bacteria. I was the happy recipient of the flu shot and I’m some upset that whatever we’ve got isn’t being defeated by the antibodies I drove across town to get via intramuscular injection.

Mostly we’re just plain quietly miserable here at the Townhouse. The piling up of housework and Lists Of Things That Must Be Done grows while all of us spend each day with our reasonably new employers pretending that we’re happy and healthy and fantastically enthusiastic while downing symptom-hiding medications and existing on willpower alone.  Each of us enters the house in the evening, exchanging outer wear and work clothes for sweat pants and flannel to collapse and suffer until the next morning calls us back to our new jobs as actors.

We tiredly fight a battle against this plague but orange juice just isn’t shielding us from devastation. We have been sending the dishes through the heavy super-heated dishwashing cycle. Multivitamins are inhaled like oxygen. The scents of eucalyptus and lemon is strong and our love affair with bleach has been kindled out of desperation.

Send penicillin. Send it quickly.


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