The progression of the man-cold

Unlike the common cold, the Man Cold can be tricky to overcome. I weakened my immune system to see how I would fare and kept a journal of the ordeal. Unfortunately not all men can be as tough about the whole thing as me.

Day 1:

Coming down with cold. I blame our baby, The Human Petri Dish, who, while holding her above my head, drooled into my mouth with the precision of a World War II B-29 bomber. To ensure maximum damage and ensure total victory, baby happily sneezed in my face a moment later. Consider placing baby in plastic bubble and interacting only if one of us is shrouded in some type of space suit.

This will probably be over in a few days. I’m not like those sniveling women that get all tired and whiney. I’ll handle this with the toughness of an iron lumberjack. Bring it on, cold.

Day 2:

Throat beginning to feel like I’m choking on a chipmunk. But it’s a small chipmunk. No big deal.

Wife suggested drugs. Easy, pusher. You’d like that wouldn’t you? Getting me all doped up on something and take advantage of me? I’m on to you, so don’t even try it. Dumped out the water she brought me “to keep you hydrated.” To keep me in a disoriented haze, no doubt, so I agree to do whatever freaky things you want – like agree you need more shoes and that you really “have nothing to wear” despite a closet full of clothes – is more like it. Can no longer trust wife. That’s OK. I don’t need her anyway. What’s the saying? Starve a flu, dehydrate a cold? Something like that. Hydration is for the weak.

Day 3:

Bad news. What I thought was a throat chipmunk is actually a throat PORCUPINE. That or sometime during the night my wife poured broken glass in my mouth, which I wouldn’t put past her.

I didn’t even have the energy to tell my wife/drug pusher to hand me the remote but somehow summoned the ability. It’s probably one of those desperate situations you read about in the news like how a pregnant lady is able to kill a polar bear that’s attacking her children with her bare hands. Nobody seemed to notice my triumph but me, though. That’s fine. I’ll contact the paper tomorrow.

Day 4:

Apparently the levee in my nose broke sometime during the night. The Red Cross has been incredibly unhelpful in providing relief. If this doesn’t constitute an emergency than WHAT DOES RED CROSS?!

With my eyes beginning to water thanks to what can only be described as the worst nose itch in the history of the WORLD I now look like I’ve been crying for the last four hours. When the Drug Pusher asked what was wrong I shouted “I look hideous and you never unload the dishwasher!” Let’s see how she likes someone spontaneously acting irrationally for no reason.

Throat feels like a nest of fire bees stinging liquid pain. This is probably the worst anybody has ever felt.

Day 5:

Barely made it to the computer today. Checked and I either have a cold, Ebola or Alien Hand Syndrome. Probably all three. I always knew I couldn’t trust my left hand. That’s why it throws things all weird.

Day 6:

Apparently there’s now a competition between me and The Human Petri Dish to see who can produce the most fluid in a given day. The winner gets a bottle of NyQuil.

In a delightful turn of events, a cough has begun. This just keeps getting better and better. I can only hope this is all a result of being bitten by a radioactive spider and I’ll come out the other end of this with super powers.

Beginning to question if life is even worth living anymore. Can someone bring me some soup?

Day 7:

I can’t remember a time when there wasn’t pain. Voice has been replaced full-time by a ragged cough that scares the cat. Fire bees have armed themselves with harpoons. The flood has subsided and it has been replaced by a drought. I’ve already forgotten what it feels like to breathe out of my nose. Do people actually do that?

Wife has banished me from the bedroom due to excess noise. Sure, make the nearly dead leave. No, no, that’s perfectly fair. There have been lots of times I’ve heard this announcement at hospitals:

Intercom: “Can all you sick people just please sleep on the floor in some other room? We have some nurses that need a nap.”

Why doesn’t somebody help me?

Day 8:

Attempted to blow nose and woke up on the floor.

Day 10:

I spent today shuffling around the house with a sign around my neck that read, “Why doesn’t anyone help me?” with a frowny face, storm cloud and kangaroo. I love kangaroos.

Day 11:

They say laughter is the best medicine, but wife refused to tickle me. That’s OK, I’ll just die then.

Day 12:

Still camped out on the couch. It’ll probably need to be destroyed after the paramedics haul away my diseased body. Nobody has gotten me any drugs. Nobody has gotten me any soup. Nobody feels sorry for me. Nobody loves me. What’s the point anymore?

Kelly Van De Walle is the senior creative writer for Briscoe14 Communications ( He can be reached at or via hallucination.