May 12, 2004


I'm at work, and I feel drunk. Unlike Kristen's delightful recent experiences drinking with her boss, though, this is a state of affairs which I can only assume is as unwelcome to everyone else as it is to me.

I woke up this morning under the profoundly mistaken impression that taking two Tylenol Cold tablets would be a good course of action to enhance my existing qualities of being awake, alive, upright and functioning. I remember cherishing the thought that such tablets would make my nose slightly less runny, thus greatly diminishing the dreaded postnasal drip which leads to the dreaded throat tickle, the dreaded cough and the dreaded lost voice. Two tablets, I said responsibly to myself, is the recommended dose for safe and effective temporary relief of the symptoms associated with the common cold, including runny nose and associated throat irritation. Two shall be the number thou shalt take, and the number of the taking shall be two. Best of all, I said to myself, they're non-drowsy. This wonderful quality of theirs will allow me to go about my day as my usual capable, alert self.

Somewhere in all of excellent planning I fell victim to a miscommunication between McNeill-PPC, Inc., the manufacturers of Tylenol Cold, and myself. "Dianna," they didn't tell me, "this product will make you feel woozy."

"Taking the recommended dosage of this product for safe and effective temporary relief of the symptoms of the common cold, including runny nose and associated throat irritation," they failed to specify, "will result in safe and effective temporary relief of the symptoms of the common cold as well as safe and effective temporary relief of your sense of balance, your normal reaction time, a certain percentage of your cerebral processing capacity and your control over the dilation of your pupils."

"You will," they failed to continue, "feel precisely as though you are under the influence of any of several recreational mind-altering substances, despite having sworn off of the substances in question several years ago. You'll be unstable on your feet and want to lay down, but you'll have too much energy to ever quite stop moving. You'll recognize the scenery around you, but feel as though it's unfamiliar and slightly distant. On the plus side, you'll be quite sure that your decision to stay recreationally in your right mind was the right thing to do. On the minus side, you'll be nonrecreationally out of your right mind for several hours whether you wanted to be or not."

As you may be able to tell, I've been writing this entry over the course of an hour or so and the medication is starting to wear off. I can't say I'll miss it. It was keeping me from comprehending my Sanskrit book, although I doubt I'll read much now with the new and intriguing distraction of people putting in concrete right in front of my desk. As someone just remarked, an entire architecture office all standing around watching concrete poured as though they've never seen it before is a pretty silly sight. But with drafting and typing to be done and clients and contractors to be wrangled, can you blame us?

Posted by dianna at May 12, 2004 11:24 AM