I wish to state at the outset that despite my clinical disposition and rather amazing bedside manner, I am not a doctor. Furthermore, I don’t even believe in personally seeing a doctor unless a priest has begun warming up his pipes for the administering of last rites over my fevered and pock marked body. In fact, I don’t even like emailing a doctor, unless it’s to respond to a series of ad hominem attacks from an ivory tower dwelling, Ivy League degree holding sophist with two middle initials (see Mark “A.R.” Kleiman, PhD. for details).
Despite all of this, I feel confident in diagnosing myself as a recent carrier of the dreaded Norwalk virus. It’s effects were described on the radio yesterday as the reversal of the entire working processes of the gastro-intestinal system. And I’m here to testify, that’s exactly what I had. What was once a happy little system for ingesting nutrients became a vengeful beast bent on expelling all the food and water I’d ingested in my entire life. Forgive me while I delve into the James Lileksicon of flu like descriptions, but I was wrung out like a washcloth. Between the projectile vomiting, the involuntarily enthusiastic bowel evacuations, the life draining vacuum of fatigue, the zombie-like bouts of dizziness and the general state of fevered dementia, I wasn’t sure I was going to recover at all. The low point had to be about half way through the illness. In a desperate attempt to ingest moisture, I licked an ice cube a single time and was thusly thrown into a violent spasm of gagging and ralphing, because apparently, that was just too substantial of an intake for my body.
But on the positive side, I did gain some newfound sympathy for the recently departed Joe Strummer, as I now know what it's like to try to kick a heroine addiction. Plus, based on my prolonged retching sessions in the bathroom, I now know what it sounded like to be in the recording studio during the sessions for “Sandanista!”. And with that cheap shot at the deceased, I herald my official return to the living. (PS - Joe wherever you are, I thought you were good in Mystery Train).