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Dear hons,

I’ve certainly had many colds and flu bugs before. But this year it has come to my attention that there are extremely important rituals, protocols and good manners that one is best advised to adhere to while fighting the immunological wars.

~Never show off your technicolor snot to those around you, no matter how impressively prodigious and colorful.

~Sneeze into your sleeve to keep all those airborne viral particles away from the others. Especially in your crowded elevator. If you are unable to reach your sleeve in time, it is not appropriate to use the hair of the person standing next to you.

~If you have, unfortunately, sneezed into someone’s face, apologize profusely as you would normally, and then say, with great frustration, “Damned allergies!”

~Make sure no one is looking when you are hunting for nasal oysters in the grocery store, before inspecting every can of soup on the shelf.

~If you have taken the nighttime cold medicine by mistake during the day and are nodding off at work, make sure you have prepared a pillow and blanket underneath your desk for such occasions. If you don’t have a desk at work, prepare a stall in the restroom and keep the door locked.

~With your family – if you are the wife and mother, you will be expected to fully perform all household duties per usual. This is a god-given responsibility that is punishable by months of guilt and recriminations. However, feel free to use shortcuts, such as prepared foods, paper plates and paper towels in the bathroom. Turn laundry items inside out and rehang them.

~If you are the husband and father, retreat to a “man cave” and stay there until you are well. This will insure your continued above-ground existence. Under no circumstances spend too much time around your family. Once you’ve been observed in the profoundly pathetic state that tends to befall males when sick, it’s tough to regain any kind of respect from your family for leadership thereafter.

That’s it for now. If you have any good ideas, please share them with us in the comments. Especially our friends from across the pond. Your ideas always sound so much classier with the accent.

Be well hons,

IB Crabby

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