HELLO, MY NAME IS: Plague Rat.

It looks like I'm sick for the third bloody time this semester. My neck is sore and swollen, my ears ache, and I generally feel like the unsexy kind of flesh-eating undead.

I went to the health center on Monday after dragging my half-conscious corpus to my 8AM class. Despite rumors on campus to the contrary, I was actually able to see a medical professional less than ten minutes after I walked through the door (As opposed to being shoved on a waiting list for weeks on end. I guess most college students aren't sick before ten in the morning). The nurse had trouble hearing my pulse, which amused me greatly. After finally getting a reading there and noting my low blood pressure, I got shuffled along to the next rung up, the nurse-practitioner. I told him what had been happening to me and he did all the usual things-- checking my neck, listening to my breathing, asking if I did drugs. (The nurse had already asked if I was pregnant. I just snickered.) After a few minutes, he said that there was a pretty good chance I just had an acute respiratory infection that snuck in and kicked me while my immune system was already down, but that he'd be happier if we could do some blood tests just to make sure.

They had to take three vials to make sure they had enough for all the tests in question. One of the most unsettling sounds in the world, I think, is that of your own blood spurting into a little plastic tube in time with the beating of your heart. After some juice and the usual "head between your legs" instructions, they sent me on my way. I'm supposed to get the results back tomorrow or Thursday. So I suppose I'll just have to wait 'til then to find out if I have mono, anemia, a thyroid condition, irregular blood sugars, pneumonia, and/or the bubonic plague. (Just kidding about the last one. Buboes are so 14th century.)

Wish me luck, too.