I woke up this morning with a scratchy throat, which is always how any cold I catch starts. My glands are mildly swollen, so already I'm tabulating what medicines to buy for the weekend. Our office conditions may have something to do with my illness, but it most certainly has something to do with Sandi's illness; she's had sinus headaches for over a week. Our office leaks every time it rains. We are all sloshing around in puddles. The carpet is soaked, and we are certain the mold is building. But I've worked here for almost three years, and I think I'm still pretty resistant.

Everytime I get a sniffle in this office, one of my co-workers tells me I should go to the doctor and get some antibiotics. Living in New Orleans guarantees sinus problems, due to the humidity, the subtropical climate, the long hot season, and then the sudden drop in temperature from indoor to outdoor, ranging between 20 to 25 degree differences. So everyone I know has a skilled rapport with antibiotics.

Something in me just cannot go to the doctor unless something is really wrong with me, something that a little time and patience can't get rid of. I don't have recurring bouts of sinus problems. In fact, on the whole, I get sick the least of all the people I work with; of course being single and living alone limit my exposure to germs considerably. So it grates my nerves to hear that antibiotics are all people can offer me in the way of healing.

This might also have to do with the fact that I hate having people tell me what they think is the best way all the time, as if they have never been wrong in their lives. Just because you've taken antibiotics every time you've had a cold doesn't mean that your doctor knew what he was doing or that this career you've had as a patient makes you a supreme authority. So leave me with my Halls cough drops and Vick's VapoRub, because I will get better just as fast without forcing my body to build up resistances to various medications. It's just a cold people; chill out.

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