The truth of today's news is: Someone has given me a cold.
This isn't just an ordinary cold, this is an M&S cold. I've had the odd sniffle and sore throat recently which is what you'd expect this time of year but this is a full blown head cold, sore throat and blocked konk. Fortunately, it is not swine flu but frankly it is man flu - the proof of which is I am writing about it because it's the only thing in my life worth talking about today.
I now deserve shares in Beechams. I have loads of those ball shaped rhinovirus thingies running about inside me - yuk! (picture from here) Now then, as an alternative to purchasing highly expensive cold remedies, as a Yorkshireman allegedly careful with his cash (a Yorkshireman is often described as a Scotsman with the generosity surgically removed) I could have tried a natural remedy and there are many to choose from.
Firstly, the only preventative measure available know to mankind other than cutting yourself off from the human race which is not a bad thing now and then is to wash your hands and then that only works in 16% to 20% of cases - how the hell do they know that?
They say 'Feed a cold, starve a fever.' Feed it with what - steak and chips, spaghetti bolognese? Loads of vitamin C through fruit and suchlike is not a lot of use it seems and there's little scientific proof that anything else is much good either. Starving a fever by the way is also bollocks according to Internet research which indicates the body needs nutrients and liquid to fight off colds and fever.
So, how do I ease the symptoms? Analgesics are the best bet because apparently cold remedies don't work any better - paracaetamol is probably as good as anything to ease the uncomfortability.
Old wives tales suggest lemon and honey (honey may well ease a cough) but there are so many combinations, here's handful and I wouldn't suggest you try any of them:
- Coltsfoot in boiling water sweetened with honey;
- Ground ginger mixed with honey (for a cough);
- Gargle with cider infused with red peppers;
- Inhaling steam from water that has rosemary leaves or Vick, hawthorn leaves or hawthorn berries.
I met a friend recently who'd had a dreadful cold. I asked if he'd done anything about it.
"Oh yes," he said with a sniffle, "I went to the doctors a fortnight ago, but he wasn't much good."
"Why not," I asked.
"He told me to drink a jug of freshly squeezed orange juice after a hot bath."
"It didn't work?"
"I dunno, I'm still drinking the bloody bath"
By the way, if you're suffering from a cold or a fever, don't take a blind bit of notice what I've written here, take your own advice or that of a medical practitioner.