Category Archives: sick

Leafy Green Peenee


Looking back on the days leading up to my health bump in the road, it’s easy to see where I went wrong.  Hell, I saw I was going wrong even as I was doing it; I just didn’t stop.   Little  things like staying in bed 24 hours a day for days in a row, emerging only to pee and eat whatever cookies I could find in the pantry.  Yes, I knew I was not actually a vampire, but I seemed to think living like one might be a viable concept.  It wasn’t.

As I crept back into the world of the Not Sick as a Sick Dog, I googled what to eat for a life with a touchy gallbladder.  Of course, the first item is leafy green vegetables.  No matter what problem you Google ( gall bladder, early menopause, how to file your taxes, how to escape the country after you file your own taxes) leafy greens always show up as a solution.  Obviously the industrial military spinach complex has penetrated the search engine universe.

But I asked, they answered and so I have been following their advice with salads at every meal and just tonight, kale.  I was so impressed with myself, I texted Diane to brag about it.  She replied asking how I prepared it.  Isn’t that adorable?  Thinking that I might actually be cooking once again.  I replied, crushing her sad little dreams, that it was the side with my Chicken Parmigiana at the Firewood Cafe, an old favorite.

In the four months I’ve been in this apartment I have turned on the stove twice, both ties to boil water.  The second time, having learned from the disastrous first time, only after I washed all the cat hair off.  The stove has one of those totally smooth porcelain tops which is easy to clean, but which collects dust and cat hair.  If you don’t wash all the debris off before firing that mother up, the stench of burning cat fur will fill the place and stay with you.  At low times, I think I can still smell it.

Anyway, my diet is better, I’m leaving the house for a couple of walks every day and I feel much better.  Food and exercise, who knew?


Because this could await for you in the outside environs.  Who knows?


New Orleans News. Also, I’m Not Dead


I’ve spent the last few days hovering on the edge of being sick; sort of feverish and queasy, wondering when the ebola was going to strike.  Turns out it was just a reaction to a flu shot I got last week, but that didn’t stop Saki from occasionally checking in to see if I was dead enough to eat.

This was all shortly after Secret Agent Fred and I returned from New Orleans where Fred entertained the hotel staff by raiding the self service bar in the lobby and then settling in to take a nap on the couch there despite the staff’s efforts to shoo him off to his room   They seemed fairly amused by the whole thing in describing it to me the next day, which says a lot about both Fred’s charm and their pleasure in watching me squirm as they dragged out each mortifying detail.  All of which I repeated to Fred, except for the parts I exaggerated.  And the ones I just made completely up.

I also was able to check in on the progress of the renovation of my house there which was terribly gratifying.  I was especially please with the big back room.  I took the back two rooms on each side of the double and combined all four into one ginormous room and then put in a wall of windows across the back to see the garden, which currently is a mud and mildew pit, but one day soon will be full of Camellias and elephant ears and crape myrtle and other old timey New Orleans garden stalwarts.


Currently, complete with riff raft.
Again, before.  Who knew what horrors lay beneath those innocent looking dirty walls and cheap tile?

Windows.  Lots of Windows.

Cough, Cough


In my post The Return of Diane, Muscato impertantly demands details about Diane’s visit claiming “We’re waiting. Certainly there’s enough depravity to recount by this point, no? After the weather we’ve had here this week, I could use a diversion…”  Tragically, there is no depravity to report; not just because I have turned into a fusty old thing, but mainly because I’ve been sick the whole time poor Diane’s been here.

I developed an interestingly wheezing cough the day she arrived.  I tried to blame her cat in Austin, implying she had imported dander to which I was allergic, but she pooh poohed that with a firm pooh pooh and before I could fabricate any kind of evidence supporting my theory, I was spiraling down an all-too familiar path into our old friend, bronchitis.

I’ve contracted bronchitis so many times that now when I call my doctor with my self diagnosis, he no longer questions me, but just sends a prescription for antibiotics and probably a short prayer of gratitude that I’m keeping my snotty infection out of his waiting room.

Believe me, this re-enactment couldn’t be any farther from the truth if it featured Bea Arthur and Carol Burnett.

The last few years I worked, I wound up with bronchitis each fall and then again at the tail end of every winter.  This, though, is the first time I’ve fallen for it since I retired, so yay for avoiding the filthy public and mass transit.

The only entertainments we’ve attempted have all wound up with me pathetically slumped over and coughing vigorously.  Still, the antibiotics have done their wonders and I’m pretty much recuperated tonight: unfortunately, tomorrow is Diane’s last day in town,  rats.



Today is sort of unnecessarily in beautiful in San Francisco, sunny, bright and cool without being chilly.  The yoozh.  I do not care.  I am sick.   A weird, deep ache that is everywhere in my body and no place in particular has taken over, bringing with it wracking shivers and a throat that feels like I have taken to gargling hot ground glass.

I have things to do, notably, changing Saki’s cat box and the laundry.  They are not getting done.

Houseboy: decorative, but useless.

It is at these rare times that I most miss R Man.  Not that he was any great shakes at nursing, but at least I could be fairly confident if I died he would keep the cat from eating my decomposing corpse.

On that cheerful note, I take to my bed.  Again.

Stupid Back


My back, never terribly cooperative at the best of times, has been giving me grief all week.  I took to my bed with ice packs and muscle relaxants, hounded my chiropractor, prayed to the Psychic Friends – nothing helped.  Then this morning I dragged my sorry ass of to a “late brunch” (which is code for drinks and vicodin) with Secret Agent Fred and several friends and now, many hours later, I feel ever so much better.   Maybe it was the pizza.

A graphic representation of my backache this week:


Much better.


Much better.



Well that certainly was an odd, odd weekend. Maybe it was all that Jesus stuff.

The very first thing Saturday morning, mrpeene was huddled in bed when I heard an all too familiar crash from R Man’s bathroom. R Man had gotten up too fast and passed out again, but this time he hit his head on the corner of the vanity on his way down. A truly, truly impressive amount of blood.
He got cleaned up and refused to listen to my increasingly shrill demands that we immediately go to the emergency room. I retaliated by turning on the House and Garden channel, which he hates. After two and half shows focusing on the dubious merits of various cracker box dumps, he caved in and off we went. The eventual verdict: too much blood pressure medicine and getting up too quickly. Then we went to have pizza.
I spent Saturday night cooking for a lunch party we had today. Braised beef short ribs, buttermilk mashed potatoes, pasta with pomodoro sauce. Tres yummy. Tomorrow is my birthday and this was a celebration. Oh, and SuperAgent Fred gave me a tee shirt that say “EEEEEEEEEEEE. Lady Bits.” Plus a super delicious strawberry and whipped cream cake.
All in all, except for hanging around yet another round of hospital waiting rooms, a top notch weekend.

Calling It In


Yes, I’m still sick. No, the thought of what that Harridan, MJ, from Infomaniac would say has not kept me from posting anything. Well, maybe a little. Mostly it’s due to Saki having gotten so accustomed to bossing me around while I’m home all day that he now stands guard over the keyboard so I can’t type anything. It is so Whatever Happened to Baby Jane. I suppose I’ll be having rats for lunch next.

Manflu: It’s Better than Pigflu


MJ the Infomaniac accuses me of having the Manflu and does so as if that were a bad thing. Get you, that’s what I say. The Manflu appears to consist of taking to one’s bed and whining (the name would imply People with Vaginas never indulge in such behavior, to which I reply “Midol.”)

I have no problem admitting to my genius in both categories. I inherited my talent for sleeping from my dear mother who would sleep for 16 hours at a stretch if the goddam kids would just let her. In turn, I am no slacker either; if remaining unconscious were a sport, I would qualify for the Olympics. Our friend Ehsen takes a nap in the evening and only gets up to go to bed for the night. I am awed by such commitment and have taken to imitating him.

As to whining, surely the most cursory glance at this blog would prove my devotion to the art.

Why MJ thinks I need an excuse for either is beyond me. Being sick, Manflu or not, only provides me with a focus for both, but at the same time distracts me from my top form. This just in: being sick sucks. The houseboys, led by Zieglus Manitobus here, have started a nonstop novena in their best underpants on behalf of my recovery, which both I and the priest at Our Lady of the Sacred Secret Place both appreciate, but it doesn’t seem to be helping yet.

Fluids. Lot of Fluids.


Yet another charming visit with Diane von Austiberg comes to an end, too soon, too soon. Did I mention we went to the fabled Chez Panisse? Did I mention it was deeeeeeelish? Indeedy.

Thrift stores all over town are now beaten to their knees by Diane, Destroyer of Other People’s Crap. Over the years we’ve been shaking them down, we’ve noticed junk stores are becoming an endangered species here in San Francisco. I guess rents are just too expensive. Plus, now plenty of them have abandoned used furniture the better to focus on worn out sweaters and stinky wool sport coats. The suggestion that they have simply run out of furniture because I have bought it all is totally unwarranted and you should stop listening to R Man, anyway.

Diane left Tuesday, I started feeling off on Wednesday and woke up today, Friday, sick as a dog. A quick trip to the doctor reveals what I thought was a bad cold and sore throat is “a little fluid on your lungs,” a diagnosis that I know from bitter experience can lead to bronchitis, so when doctorman started writing a prescription for antibiotics (and codeine cough syrup! Hoo hoo! Score!) I was not arguing.

I am such a bad patient, I can never remember the names of the medicine I consume, so I always refer to all the antibiotics I have ever choked down as Astromyacin, even though my doctor patiently assures me there is no such thing. I think there certainly should be since it is such a kickass name, I’m sure it would be terribly effective. The current batch of Astromyacin (or whatever the hell its real name is) had better be working since it’s already making me feel like I’ve been punched in the gut and placed under the french fry lamp at Burger King.

But mrpeenee, you ask, what is the good news, the sunny side? Let’s see…. 1) this didn’t happen while Diane was in town, yay, and 2) I was supposed to leave Monday for a conference in Minneapolis and now I don’t have to go. See “hacking cough” “punched in gut feeling” and “contagious.” I’m sure Minneapolis is a charming city and I was not pouting about being sent there for a weak, but sticking around San Francisco instead is ok with me.

After all, somebody has to keep an eye on the houseboys, like dear little Petit Diego here, cause as soon as I turn my back, I’m sure MJ would be in there fomenting all over the place. Tramp.