Wednesday, January 17, 2007


"Bite Me"
This much is a given: I need to lower my body into a large vat of rubbing alchohol and remain suspended there for some minutes.
What has not yet been decided are the logistics of the lowering. Obviously, I need some sort of harness, right? And while I suppose a bathtub could suffice as the vat, I'm afraid I may need a submersion tank with greater depth (I need a Ted Koppel-type tank, not just the Matt Lauer easy-dip bathtub). Do you think David Blaine has any equipment he's not currently using to enter a state of hibernation and non-defecation for three weeks while promoting the Target brand?

See, here's the thing: since getting back from Guatemala (did I, um, mention we went to Guatemala?), my right hand and now arm have been developing some suspicious bite/wart/mini-third-nipple type thingies. First two little bites popped up on my thumb. They didn't phase me; I named them Madison and Cody and painted little matching outfits on them. Then, approximately 40 hours later, two inches down on my hand, up popped Auntie Clementine, looking suspiciously like the twins. But denial exists for a reason, and so I soldiered through another 41 hours until Uncle Festus came out to set up a lemonade stand on my wrist.
I'm giving it just another 40 hours. Or 80. Or at the most 120. But then, most certainly, I'm going to face this marauding horde and take them to the vat of rubbing alchohol (trust me, I've already tried the ingestible stuff, and neither Pumpkin Ale nor Riesling is anti-biotic enough), whereupon we're going to play end-of-the-school-year carnival dunk-tank, like in the finale of GREASE, during which John Travolta in his new letterman jacket dunks the teacher who is responsible for his imminent summer school make-up session.
Sure, others among us--let's call them Wusschester United--would go to the doc. Trust me, the fact that I inadvertently put my toothbrush under the tap water two times in Guatemala and drank pop containing non-pure water ice cubes leads me to think I may actually have some sort of doc-suitable parasite (we've all seen TREMORS, ja? I imagine such wormy beasts under my skin, laying their eggs, snaking around my veins).
Then again, I may just have a workaday case of pest infestation. However, if you've read this blog back far enough to remember when a bat moved into my house, you'll know that I don't suffer any infestation lightly. I often take to the bathroom for hours upon end, where I enjoy unfettered weeping and agitatedly rearrange the tampons into small village communities.
This particular infestation, though, doesn't make me feel weepy. It just makes me feel scratchy, as in "I got this huge paper cut on my toe, slathered it in honey, and then jammed it into an ant colony on the savannah for twelve days" itchy.
As I peruse the Walgreens to see how many bottles of rubbing alcohol it will take to fill the vat, and as I scratch the whole family of bites to infernal bloodiness, I harken back two years to when I was pretty sure I had fleas.
We hadn't been on any cross-contintental dashes, and we didn't have a pet. Of course, I might've picked the fleabies up from a shrew, vole, rat, or leashless dog (all the creatures with whom I have daily involuntary contact). With the fleas, the itches got to the point where I couldn't even sit and type, much less grab the remote control at night to tune into THE APPRENTICE and scream at what a weenie Donald Trump is.
All I could do was scratch and scratch; my skin was covered with bites--around the ankles, up to my knees, around my waistband. I was in a constant state of being about to scream, like cresting the highest peak of a roller-coaster called the Entangled Entrails.
During Flea Infestation 2004, I tried really hard to be rational and relevant in daily life, but I just couldn't stop scratching.
Maybe it wasn't fleas. Maybe it was hives. Or maybe I had scabies. Or chiggers. All I knew for sure is that all attempts at heightened personal hygiene (I even washed the sheets, and it wasn't even February) resulted in more scratching.
Most definitely, I was glad my husband was already committed to our gig as a lifetime dealie, or I'd have been certain that I was about to be alone forever, just me, my fleas, my big crocheted rainbow-colored poncho, my John Travolta tote bag, and a lot of bus rides up and down Superior Street to the city bus transfer station, where I would spend my hours, scratching and whimpering, alone in the middle of a crowd.
So today, as I sit scratching, instead of looking up the doc's phone number, I find myself searching for enough change to hop on the bus, where I will be among My People.
Public scratchers of the world, gather 'round. And then strap on a harness. The vatting won't be gentle, but won't it feel good when those top layers of skin peel off for once and all?
Host no more!

23 comments:

mist1 said...

My friend had fleas in her carpet once. They chewed my ankles up. I have this mole on my heel that for weeks, I swore was a flea trapped under my skin. I have only recently stopped trying to gouge it out.

Lee said...

Dear God Woman...get the to the doctor! I hope you don't have those crazy worms that live under your skin and you have to shine a light and they peek their heads out and you pull them out by wrapping them 'round a pencil.



Oh.


That totally wasn't helpful was it? It's just that every time I get any bumps...that's where I go. Hell.


GO TO THE DOCTOR!

Rocco said...

Sounds to me like you have a case of Montrooster's Revenge. That's what you get for hating om one of God's creatures.

That being said if it one of them worm thingies you got crawling under skin, I do holpe you get rid of them. I wish Uncle Fester and the twins a quick, irreversible death, God's creatures or not.

Rocco said...

p.s. I just left you a message with a lot of typos. what's that thing you call "proof-reading" that you teach in class?

urban-urchin said...

Ohhh oh I am now neuroticly scratching at my psychosomatic 'itch' spot- an area on my thigh that itches when I am in an area I perceive to be dirty (nasty skanky goodwills for example).

Suck it up and get thee to a physician!! I'd hate to think of you with some funky parasite (google Botfly- it will make you scream and cower in the corner).

Le Nightowl said...

Well, you're not being very sensible, what if it's something contagious? You wouldn't want your kids to start scratching, would you?
You even got me scratching, by now... :)

PS: your word verification is a strong deterrent to leaving a comment, although I understand the reason behind it :(
By the time I have typed in my comment, I need to retype the long string of letters, sometimes several times because I took too long to type... grrrrrr

Dorky Dad said...

I scratch a lot, thanks to dry skin, so I feel your pain. That said, I concur with those urging you to visit the doctor.

Central America + mysterious bites = reeeeeeallly creepy.

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

Thanks for sharing but GO SEE A DOCTOR!!! Central America has all sorts of surprises of the unpleasant kind.

velvet girl said...

Egads, now I'm all itchy! I feel for your suffering. I hate fleas and all sorts of crawling and burrowing skin-nasties (Chiggers, oooooh, *shudder*!)

A doctor does sound like a pretty good idea.

-velvet

Jazz said...

The wusses aren't those who go to the doctor sweetheart, they are those who don't... :-p

OMG!!! I just read Lee's comment. Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

At least the nasty parasites I brought back from my travels stayed well ensconced in my digestive tract.

Jocelyn said...

Mist1--Don't stop the gouging. There might be one of those worms Lee writes about under there. Don't deny yourself the pleasure of wrapping it 'round a pencil.

Lee--Okay. So. I. Can't. Even. Speak. More than anything, you've gotten me to riffle through my wallet for my health insurance card.

Rocco--Had I known what strong feelings my rooster hatred would engender in you, I'd have stuck to just saying I hate kitties and things like that.

Urchin--I think I most definitely cannot Google Botfly. You and Lee have scared me too much to Google anything. Plus, I seem to have a parasite, and it's sucking the very Googling life out of me.

Nightowl--I feel that I've just gotten a firm, yet affectionate, talking to (one I deserve). And I know what you mean about word verification. I didn't used to have it, but Jazz told me I had to. I do whatever Jazz says.

Dorky Dad--I never quite got the Goth thing down, so this is my late-in-life attempt to achieve creepiness.

Lone Grey--Yea, one of Central America's worst surprises was roosters who don't know dawn when they see it.

Velvet--If only you could come drive me to the doctor; we could shudder together.

Jazz--How clever of you to keep your parasites so well contained instead of giving them free license as I have. Yea, you're right about the doctor thing. The whole health scare system gives me a different kind of heebiejeebies.

choochoo said...

have you tried a cheese grater? or however you spell that...

Glamourpuss said...

Thanks, mate. I feel your itching, oh yes, I feel it good (scratch, scratch).

Get thee to a doctor, forthwith!

Puss

Dave said...

You know ... I think I am going to keep Guatemala off my itinery! :-)

Odat said...

Ditto what Dave said and what Lee said...
Get your ass to a doctor!!!
Hope they don't come a crawling thru the screen here!
Peace.....

Em said...

I found your blog cause you commented on another blog I read. And I'm glad I followed you! Oh, wait, I'm not a follower in the creepy, stalker kind of way. Okay? Good.

Anyway, I read several of your posts and you definitely made me laugh! I'll be back often!!

CSL said...

I don't think you can "have fleas" all on your lonesome - either they are in residence and bothering everyone, or not. Chiggers and the like, you can. But this. If it some parastic or flesh-eating bacterial thing, are you waiting for Divine intervention? I'm with everyone else - get to the doctor before your limbs start dropping off! And then you can blog the hilarious course of treatment so it's a win-win for us all.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Sorry, Sweetie. It's off to the doctor for you. This Thing, whatever it is, has already taken over your life.

Please do get it checked out. There are medications, both internal and topical, that can make them go away. You can name them and dress them, but They Are Not Your Friends.

I would rather suffer pain than anything that itches.

urban-urchin said...

Back to add- Well??? Whatcha got?

Crankster said...

"I often take to the bathroom for hours upon end, where I enjoy unfettered weeping and agitatedly rearrange the tampons into small village communities."

Classic.

Go to the doctor. It sounds like the bumps are working their way towards your heart.

Jocelyn said...

Urchin--Thanks for checking back. I'm way too sheepish to post here that the bumps have stopped appearing, so I'm drawing heavily on denial and doing nothing. Actually, I am itch free, and the bumps are drying up so that I can enjoy the fun of peeling off their top layers, to look for the worm heads Lee mentioned. Seriously, though, if I get even one more, I'm off to the doctor. Yes, I know, my approach to my own health is infuriating. Even I can see that. But I have gotten a bang out of being told by so many to go visit my very introverted physician (I think she likes it when I come to visit her, as I talk non-stop and throw in lots of random stories, just to really spice up the five minutes we have together).

Dan said...

What can I say? Those little critters love you ... or maybe they just like your John Travolta tote bag.

Really! A Travolta tote bag? One can almost argue that you deserve this infestation because of that! ;)

Steven Novak said...

After I scratch I like to blow the flakes of my skin onto the person next to me.

Yes..

I'm a jerk. ;)

Steve~