>>> Casual Misanthropy
By staff writer JD Rebello
October 17, 2004

I got allergies.

Had them since I was six. That means every single day since I saw six I wake up feeling like shit. Every single day. Some people have summer allergies. Others get hit in the winter. Not me. It doesn't matter the season, I feel like shit. Here's the worst part. I never know what to expect.

I mean, if my nose ran every day, I would understand. But not my allergies. I have a veritable All-Star team of allergies. They can pitch, hit, steal bases…and they've got an incredible Gagne-like bullpen. And they're all coached by my…ah fuck it, this metaphor sucks. If you don't get my point by now, I don't want you reading further. Go lay down.

So one day my eyes are itchy. Some days my nose is runny or my throat is sore. Some days, my body likes to hit me with everything so I wake up and try to hang myself with my alarm clock wire. Is it possible to have a stuffed and runny nose? Yep. I've done it. Apparently my nose is manic depressive.

Ever had itchy eyes while wearing contacts? Well, you'd know if you had, because you'd have broken your monitor punching it with your bare fist as a sign of solidarity. I forgot to tell you. I wear contacts. So any allergies are amplified. And I can't even rub my eyes to alleviate the pain. People wonder why I'm miserable all the time. Sometimes I take medications for my ‘gies. Most allergy pills come in Night and Day versions. It doesn't matter what you take. Both are going to make you drowsy. I've taken the non-drowsy and washed it down with Dunkin' Donuts black coffee, and still have all the awareness of a narcoleptic watching a David Lynch film. Why even bother having a non-drowsy? Did the guy who draws the pill package get tired of drawing moons? Did he go up to his boss and say: “I'm fucking sick of drawing moons. I want to draw a sun. Let me draw a sun you rat bastard.” I dunno, maybe it's one of those things like flammable/inflammable.

Then there's Kleenex. The worst Kleenex is that one with the lotioned shit. That's just what I need, a used fucking Kleenex. Hey assholes, I could wipe my nose with a fucking pine cone. My nose will be fine. I don't mind a little redness.

By the way, you might have noticed I said “wipe my nose,” as opposed to “blow my nose.” I don't blow my nose. Ever. It's a fucking waste of time. Why blow when you can sniffle? I don't mind sniffling. In fact, I thoroughly enjoy it. People around me get all pissy and all “Why don't you just blow your nose?” Fuck those people. In the interest of full disclosure, I'll admit I've tried to blow my nose in the past. Didn't work. I felt worse. It does nothing, and there's no gentle way to do it without blasting snot all over your hands. So I sniffle. I put up with the petty annoyances of everyone else, the least they can do is deal with this. For example, my mom likes to come into my bedroom and begin vacuuming as I sleep. WHILE I SLEEP! And then she has the gall to tell me to blow my nose. Sorry, Mom. Little Justin's all grown up and he don't blow for no one.

Sore throat is the worst. I'd rather have lupus than a sore throat. I seriously live in constant fear. I'll swallow and feel a twinge of pain and just freak out. I hose my throat down with Chloraseptic (the modern-day heroin of medicine), gargle salt water, and swallow ice. I do anything and everything because a sore throat is awful.

On the plus side, I never get sick. I haven't had a fever or flu in years, because I'm sick every goddamned day. Ever been hungover with allergies? That's fun. Nothing like sniffling vomit back into your system, and filling your sinuses with day-old Romanov. (See? This is why you're not supposed to eat while you read my column. You've been warned.)

People who see me on a daily basis usually know about my allergies, often because I'm screaming “FUCKING FUCKING ALLERGIES!” They know this. They KNOW this, and yet they still ask, “So Justin, you got a cold?” I mean what do you say here? Is it even worth trying to communicate with this person? Shouldn't you instead throw your own shit at their face so they can feel like they are home with their people?

There's a big difference between allergies and a cold. A cold can be cured, I don't care what science wants to tell you. Allergies are here forever. Like death. Like taxes. Like William Shatner. You can't escape it.

I hate my life.