Well… well… ill


Erk! The downside of freelancing has to be the increased exposure to bugs. In Dublin I lived on my own and walked to work, a pretty, 20-minute stroll along the canal. When I moved to London I started travelling regularly by tube, train and bus. God, I’d never been so ill so often in all my life. Coughs, colds, chesties, weird glandy things, things that made me shiver and throw up… blimey, it was a lifetime of lurgies telescoped into about 18 months. I’m tougher now.

Last week I was in Posh Technology magazine, and one afternoon we were all sitting busily getting on with the stuff we’re paid to do. Naturally, that couldn’t be allowed to continue, so I addressed the managing ed beside me who was hunched and staring into middle distance over some invoices. Ho, ho, I said, Want me to call out some random numbers? Ho, ho.

He turned his ravaged face to me and I’m sorry to say that I recoiled in shock. The colour of dirty washing-up water, he was. Wild-eyed and sweating, with the kind of look that stills chatter. ‘I feel really, really weird,’ he whispered, and lurched off to the open window. Norovirus, apparently. It had been working its way around the office for the previous week. Nippy little fucker, I’ll give it that. Poor old ManEd went from ‘fine’ to ‘going home’ within 30 minutes.

Having surreptitiously sneaked out to wash my hands (Scrub them! Flay the skin off them!) I waited gloomily for the onslaught. But onslaught came there none. Dunno why, but I thank God for it. Still, yesterday I might have truffled out a likely replacement contamination source: the ATMs on Albemarle Street. Beyond disgusting – and I’m not esp fastidious. Blackened gunk clotted across the keys, similar clagged around the card slot and who can say what unspeakable schmears across the screen. And the whole area shrouded in a cloud of piss fumes so thick you nearly had to chew on the in-breath. Swab’n’sniff…


One Response to “Well… well… ill”

  1. You really should write a book

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