Published on July 28th, 2014 | by Richard Black


Robitussin on Ice and Other Benefits to an Acute and Treatable Illness


Finally a cough syrup that isn’t just for colds.

Darcy has been sick for the past few days which, through the transitive property of geometry and illness, means that I have become ill as well. Laura still attempts to stave off the regular bout of diphtheria or ebola or whatever it is that kids are catching now but I’ve pretty much given up on taking any precautionary measures.

The odds are good that whatever superbug currently tooling around my daughter’s system is also currently incubating somewhere in my body, or not, or that I’ve already caught whatever it is, or not. It’s a rather fatalistic approach but there’s not much a man can do when he spends the bulk of his time around a vector for disease.

Laura, however, still fights the good fight and I applaud her for it. At the barest hint of a sniffle she starts bathing in Purel and downing vitamin C tablets like they were acid at a Grateful Dead show pre-party. Occasionally her actions have the desired effect butI believe this has more to do with the fact that Laura begins working longer hours the second Darcy has a loose stool and our daughter isn’t jamming her phlegmy fingers into Laura’s soft palate at any given chance.

This isn’t to say that I enjoy being ill per se (I do but that’s another subject). I’ve just come to accept disease as part of my life. It’s taken me some time to develop this Zen like approach and I look forward to using it later on in life when it comes time to accept male pattern baldness, erectile dysfunction, heart disease, cirrhosis of the liver, divorce and senile dementia although hopefully not in that order.

There are  benefits to an acute and treatable illness that make the various bits of gastrointestinal excitement, fever, chills, painful urination and general sense of malaise almost worth it. I don’t get the attention I used to before we had Darcy, but then again I usually preferred to be left alone for a few days when I snagged a case of the seasonal flu.

These days I view the opportunity as a chance to catch up on some rest and relax with a bottle of Robitussin, and a bucket of ice as I pass in and out of consciousness while Darcy watches the various goings on of Dora or Mickey or Jerry Springer for 36 straight hours.

It’s really quite lovely.

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