Archive for Health

45. Drop a contact lens.

You’re on the subway, rumbling along to work, staring at a poster for the local community college in which a number of students look really excited to be going to a community college, when something flies into your eye. You don’t know what it could be or how on earth it got there, as you’re pretty sure that a gale force wind blustering through a closed subway car is a rare occurrence. Nevertheless, some foreign object is now perched quite obstinately upon your retina, and you’re terrified it will soon begin eating its way through to your optic nerve if you don’t get it out as quickly as possible.

You begin viciously clawing at your eyeball, much to the horror of those sitting around you, who believe you to be one of those subway crazies who eat their own dandruff. Tears are now streaming uncontrollably, as well as a healthy amount of snot. You beg strangers for a tissue, but they just go on pretending to listen to their iPods while reading the newspaper. Oh, you’re on to their little game. You know there’s no music streaming from those earbuds. They just don’t want any batshit eye-gougers to approach them.

Eventually you manage to scoop out the perpetrator – an insidious eyelash – along with a tiny vision-correcting miracle. Your contact lens, stressed and traumatized from the events of minutes past, sits there pathetically on your finger. Wrinkled and disheveled, it grimaces up at you in pain. You grimace back, since you don’t have any solution on you at the moment and you both know you’re just going to have to shove that sucker right back into your eye without the help of any moisture whatsoever.

So your lens decides that, rather than join you on that little adventure, it will escape. And thus, a new quest begins. It hurls itself down to the ground, amidst a chorus of gasping and groaning from you. You quickly glance down at the disgusting floor of the subway, not wanting to even imagine the kind of bacteria and diseases and bodily fluids wafting around down there. But vision correction does not come cheap these days, and you’re going to need both eyes tonight if you want to enjoy Michael Flatley, Lord of the Dance. Those front-row-seat tickets are just burning a hole in your pocket, and you’ll be damned if you only get to witness those world-famous Feet of Flames with one eye!

So you swallow your pride and begin digging around on the floor, sweeping your hand across the sticky surface with grandiose, epic gestures. You make contact with many objects that you’d like to never think about again. Was that fur? Is this a syringe? Keep groping, maybe you’ll stick yourself with the antidote. You’re not even close, of course, as the sheer invisibility of the thing makes it nearly impossible to ever detect again. It could very well have migrated to the other end of the car and gotten off of the train two stops ago, for all you know.

Eventually, you find the little pissant, balled up in a corner and beyond repair. Crusty and shriveled, it mocks you and you self-respect, until all you can do is fling it uselessly into the coffee of the guy next to you.

So if you want to suck at life, drop a contact lens. You may be squinting like a pirate for the rest of the day, but look on the bright side: the left half of the bright side, that is.


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32. Spill hot coffee onto your groin.

You realize that you probably shouldn’t have stayed up late last night to watch the harrowing ending of The Bare Wench Project, but a drinking game in which the only rule is to take a shot whenever an errant boob pops onscreen is an alcohol-related activitiy that you sure as hell aren’t going to miss.

But now, at seven o’clock in the morning, you very closely resemble a constipated zombie as you stagger out the front door, half-dressed and smelling faintly of gouda cheese. A half hour later, you find yourself in the middle of Starbucks, though you have no recollection of how you got there or why you’re clutching a bouquet of begonias. No matter. There’s a hot, steaming mug of pure caffeine perched on your table and you plan on sucking it down faster than a Dyson vacuum cleaner. It never loses suction! Truly a modern miracle!

Gripping the cup with shaky hands, you carefully bring the brim to your arid lips. The anticipation is almost palpable, zipping through the air with — wait, that’s not a metaphor flying around, it’s a fly! There is a fly in the Starbucks. And it’s going to land in your voluminous vessel of salvation if you’re not careful. You delicately place your coffee back onto the table and proceed to wave the insidious insect off with clumsy, spastic arm flailings. The casual observer might be led to believe that you have escaped from the nearest mental facility. But you have a mission, and that is to save your morning from the clutches of a winged, disgusting, disease-ridden menace.

There, you’ve got it right where you want it – in front of you. Nice strategy. Slowly, silently, like a ninja, you reach over and steal the newspaper that the guy next to you is reading. Shushing his cries of outrage, you furtively roll it up, take aim, and swing. The fly deftly evades your poorly-executed death blow, buzzing out the door to go annoy the people at the Starbucks across the street. You, on the other hand, have suffered a much worse fate: the coffee that you had so lovingly composed is now currently searing the skin off in and around your groin.

There’s very little one can do in this type of situation other than hop around like an injured orangutan, scream incomprehensibly, and gesture wildly at the fate that has befallen your new khakis. Others may stare at you with heaping amounts of pity, but pity doesn’t put the scalding coffee back in the cup, now does it? Your panicked screams of anguish and futile fanning motions do little to rectify the situation. And the fabulous absorption powers of your chinos ensure that your crotchal region stays nice and fiery for up to ten minutes, baking away both your self-respect and your ability to conceive children.

So if you want to suck at life, spill hot coffee onto your groin. Not only are you still uncaffeinated and covered in third degree burns, but you now possess a stain that can’t possibly be breached without a plethora of jokes at your expense. Congatulations, Captain Shittypants. It’s going to be a long day.

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31. Trip over the only obstacle within a 100-foot radius.

You’re in a hurry, goddamit. The Land Before Time XXXIV: Please Just Let Us Die goes on sale at precisely 9:00am this morning, and you sure as hell aren’t going to miss a single second of precious dinosaur antics. You throw on a shirt, a shoe, maybe some pants (maybe not), and fly out the door.

You could take the car, but why bother? It’s a beautiful day, the sun is out, and your allergy medication has finally kicked in. No eye-watering, nose-dripping, wheezing fits for you! A little exercise couldn’t hurt, either. You became dangerously exhausted after eating a twenty-piece Chicken McNugget Value Meal with ranch dressing while watching the Boston Marathon, and you’re fairly sure this will not be winning you a Presidential Fitness Award any time soon.

You powerwalk down the street, so blazingly ignorant of anything around you not affiliated with heartwarming animated pterodactyls that you completely miss the potential hazard quickly approaching. Sure, the sidewalk is at least fifteen feet wide, completely clear of pedestrians, and paved to a degree of smoothness rivaled only by bowling lanes and freshly zambonied skating rinks. All except for a daring, rogue brick that has brazenly thrust itself up onto the surface, not unlike The Little Mermaid and her quest to become Part Of Our World.

Alas, also like The Little Mermaid, this brick has a thing or two to learn about not royally fucking up the lives of everyone it encounters. You continue your jaunt, blissfully unaware, and deviating nary a hair’s width from the path you’re on. You take in the sights and sounds around you – hey, there’s Bill the Barber, nicking the ear of Old Hobo EarNick! There’s a woman breastfeeding in public! There’s a man throwing lettuce at her! There’s an oily, naked —

You’re on the ground. You don’t know how you got there, but a brief investigation into the matter reveals the mischievous brick to your now swollen eye. Mocking you with its obviousness, there it stands – proud, noble, and outrageously visible. A mere glance in the direction of the ground would have saved you this crushing indignity, but so confident you were in the nimbleness of your feet, you didn’t feel the need. A mistake you won’t be making again anytime soon.

So if you want to suck at life, trip over the only obstacle within a 100-foot radius. Were you to wander the Sahara with seemingly nothing around for miles except sand dunes, devastating isolation, and comically-positioned skeletons, you would be the one to inevitably stumble and fall over a single solitary camel turd. It’s a gift, really. Cherish it.

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30. Drop your toothbrush in the toilet.

You just got home from the dentist, and you couldn’t possibly be any happier. No cavities, no tooth decay, no plague, not a single solitary cell of bacteria. Your mouth is cleaner than the Pine Sol Lady’s house on the first day of spring, more spotless than an albino dalmation, more immaculate than that guy on the street corner who calls himself the Angel Of Death And Spare Change.

Feeling fresh and minty, you gaze adoringly at your brand new toothbrush. You opened up real wide, you kept real still during the x-rays, you even brought your own bib – all to win the holiest of prizes. A rubber-gripped, fully-contoured, 40 bristle count Tool of Dental Perfection. You behold its curves in awe, proud, amazed, and a little turned on. You delicately place it into the holder, which has already been cleared in anticipation of its arrival, and gaze at it longingly, counting down the hours until you may massage your eager gums with its tender stalks of hygiene.

Oooh…you just can’t wait until bedtime! In a reckless abandonment of any and all self-control, you tear the brush from its new home, slather it up with some Crest Whitening Sensations, and jam it into your mouth. It’s everything you dreamed it would be and more. A veritable symphony of dental health melodizes throughout your oral cavity as you ruthlessly destroy any microorganisms that could possibly have found their way into your mouth on the brief drive home from the dentist. Take THAT, gum disease! And THAT, halitosis! Don’t even THINK about it, acute necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis!

As you fervently shout vague threats at various inanimate oral disorders, your body slowly drifts away from the sink. Dancing around the bathroom in nothing but the dental bib that you have once again donned for this auspicious occasion, you are no longer aligned with the bathroom counter, and by the time you are able to wrench the brush out of your foamy, sputtering mouth, it’s too late. You place it gingerly upon the countertop, only to watch in horror as it totters ever so slightly, freezes for a nanosecond, then falls to the latrinical depths below.

As it splashes into the gaping maw of the porcelain sea, you scream shrilly and without restraint. One, because your precious dental tool has now become the property of the infamous Toilet Monster your mother always warned you about, and two, you’re going to have to fish that thing out of there using only a plunger and whatever small amount of ingenuity you happen to possess. The plunger only gets you so far; that is, you use it to poke the brush around, ultimately turning the magnificent Oral B Cross-Action Pro-Health into a mini toilet brush. Oh, how the mighty have fallen! you lament. Your once-gorgeous instrument of hygiene is now a foul, lowly poop-scrubber. You should have seen this coming, really. It was too beautiful for this world.

So if you want to suck, drop your toothbrush in the toilet. The moment you finally break down and plunge your hand into the bowl to retrieve it may not be the most glamorous minute of your life, but it will most definitely be followed by a vigorous hand-scouring and disinfection so thorough it’ll put Mr. Clean himself to shame, stalking away as he does to re-buff his mirror-like head.

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21. Spit all over yourself.

You’ve had this cold for what seems like months. You’re coughy. You’re phlegmy. You can’t remember the last time your nostrils were used for the purpose of breathing. You’re forgotten what food tastes like. So you can be forgiven for breaching the social faux pas of spitting in public. You’ve suffered enough, and there’s no reason all that mucus should go anywhere but into your neighbor’s hydrangea bushes.

So you hock up a really good one, all the way from the back of your throat. Its volume rivals that of the Amazon River Basin. Single-celled organisms have already begun to evolve in its primordial soup. Plus, Iits formation is also accompanied by a symphony of guttural noises that could easily be mistaken for those of a surly velociraptor. And to top off the performance, your face contorts into an arduous grimace that suggests you’ve just consumed the contents of a garbage disposal. All in all, you’re ready to spit.

You’ve never really fancied yourself an athlete, but if you were, this would be your grand slam, your touchdown, your hole-in-one, your “Connect Fooouuur!!”. You rear back, load the cannon, and release the sphere of goo into a graceful arc. It soars majestically through the air, glistening in the sun like a slimy, gelatinous zeppelin. You’d almost stand back to admire your work, if you weren’t in such a hurry. But the 2:05pm viewing of the Hannah Montana movie waits for no man.

As such, you continue walking at a brisk pace, so jazzed in anticipation of hearing the angelic voice of Miley Cyrus that you completely forget that your loogie is still in play. But it certainly hasn’t forgotten. And as luck would have it, this previously calm and wind-free day has suddenly decided to unleash gale-force gusts at the exact moment your beautiful mucus has begun its downward trajectory. It freezes mid-air, pulls a quick U-turn, and suddenly hurls itself directly at your face.

And the fun has just begun. Due to the sheer size of your oozy contribution, the surging downpour continues unabated. It drips down to your shirt, onto your shoes, even finding its way into your crotch, leaving a disconcerting stain. And the wind certainly isn’t helping matters. Its blustery surges cause the snot to spread across the entirety of your face, coating your cheeks and eventually finding a home in your hair, where it will stay for the remainder of the day. You attempt to stop all of this, of course, clawing and futilely thrashing your glutinous hands in the air, but this accomplishes nothing and only makes you further resemble a victim of the playful antics of Slimer.

So if you want to suck at life, spit all over yourself. You might no longer feel quite as endeared to your beloved loogie as you mop it out of your earlobe, but at least you now know what it feels like to be a Ghostbuster.

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16. Get a papercut.


Your glance anxiously at the clock. Your fingers fly across the keyboard. You gnaw away at the Dunkin’ Donuts cup that has been sitting at your desk for hours, saliva-encrusted shards of styrofoam littering your harried cubicle. Co-workers drop by every five minutes in an attempt to tear you away from your report, but their innocent pleasantries are met only by primordial grunts or the occasional “I have a deadline, CHERYL!”

Only fifteen minutes left. You save your work, take a deep breath, and hit ‘Print’. You hurry over to the beloved office Xerox WorkCentre, hopping up and down excitedly like a kid on Christmas morn, as if the two-ton behemoth were dispensing Skittles and jellybeans into the air instead of Staples brand copy paper.

There it is. Your pride and joy. Your baby. Those figures have never looked so powerful. The pie chart is breathtaking. Tears spring to your eyes as you delicately grace your fingers over a particularly magnificent bar graph. It’s times like these that make the 97 straight hours of work with no sleep, little food, and peeing in a bucket by your desk all worth it.

Only one thing left to do: fax it to the client. You bouncily punch the numbers into the keypad, quietly humming “Eye of the Tiger” and pausing every so often to punch a triumphant fist into the air. Nothing can topple this high. Nothing can fell you now.

Except an 8.5″ x 11″ leaf of pure evil.

You can almost feel it coming. You expertly place the sheet into the tray, but you’ve become little too careless now, a little too cocky. It slips, ever so slightly, from your fingers. You reach with your other hand to catch it, to rip it from its untimely plummet to the floor, but a week’s worth of sleep deprivation has decided to catch up with you at this exact moment and ruthlessly rob you of any remaining vestiges of coordination. You fumble, you choke, and then…

You’re never really considered the true meaning of the phrase “a fate worse than death”, but its message is driven home with such force at this moment it nearly knocks you out cold. Of course, that could be due more to the massive blood loss. You’re dizzy. You feel sick. You’re absolutely positive that a bazooka to the gut would be less painful than this. You stand there, helpless, staring at your gushing finger and yelling at it, as if this might force the blood to go back into your vessels where it belongs. Because it’s certainly not stopping on its own. You quickly glance at the remains of your afternoon cup of tea. Might a squeeze of lemon juice stanch the flow? Or at the very least ease the pain?

Negative on both accounts. Your animal-like howls of pain increase in both volume and frequency as you hurl the demonic citrus across the room and graspingly attempt to suck the pain away, in an oddly vampiric turn. You hopelessly glance at your report, which now resembles the only surviving piece of evidence from a killing spree of some sort. You damn your clients to hell, screaming in vain to the heavens such curses as “Who uses fax machines these days ANYWAY?” and “MODERNIZE, you ASSHATS!” You desperately look around the room for band-aids, gauze, or anything that could be used as a tourniquet. But there’s no use. You can’t think straight. You literally want to die. You fight the urge to burst into tears. You fail.

So if you want to suck, get a papercut. The sting may last for only a few hours, but the image, sensation, and incredibly detailed sound effects of a razor-sharp edge of paper slicing through your poor defenseless skin will stay with you long into the night, your wretched sobs and tortured screams drowned out only by the incessant thought that you will never again be able to face a copy machine without heavily gloved protection and a healthy supply of anti-nausea medication. Begin stockpiling now!

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13. Fail to check toilet paper status.


You’re not sure what prompted you to eat at Taco Bell. It was probably those commercials wherein they throw all sorts of delicious-sounding words around, like “Crunchy!” and “Cheesy!”, or those even-better sounding words that they themselves make up, like “Crunchtastic!” or “Cheeselicious!” Whatever the reason, you decided that it was time to get your Fourthmeal on. You don’t even know what that is, but the dancing taco told you to do it, so you did.

What the dancing taco didn’t tell you is that along with the Crunchtastic Cheeselicious Chalupa Gordita Supreme Xtreme comes a heaping side of Awesomely Righteous Diarrhea Xplosion. And it naturally hits at the most inopportune time: during a movie, at the library (you’re there to look up all the new fun words you learned from the Taco Bell menu), in the middle of a wedding ceremony (hopefully not yours), while orbiting earth in a Russian space station – all in all, there really is no good time for this to happen. All you know is that you have to get to a facility as soon as possible.

You stagger around haltingly, resisting the urge to place your hand over your buttocks in what most would consider to be a humorous manner, but one that you would instead characterize as “necessary”.  You attempt to ask passing pedestrians where you might find the nearest latrine, but you’re too panicked at this point to form complete sentences, so whatever comes out of your mouth sounds something like: “Muuh…bathroom…go…where?” Eventually you find it, burst in like a maniac, descend upon the throne, and do your dirty sinful business, thereby entertaining the other restroom patrons with a rather colorful soundtrack.

And now look at you. Pretty proud of ourselves, aren’t we? Look at that silly grin upon your face. You feel great, like you’re on top of the world. The moment you leave this stall you’re probably going to be declared President of the Solar System. Only one thing left to do.

Your hand shoots over to the toilet paper contraption, whatever Rube Goldbergian device it may be. You feel nothing. A small tremor of panic shoots through your body as you peer into the abyss. You begin to investigate further, feeling around for quite some time like you’ve been abruptly thrust into a scene from The DaVinci code, desperately attempting to decipher the magical code that will release the invisible toilet paper into your waiting hands. But no luck. You just sit there, staring at the emptiness, totally unable to accept that you’ve gotten yourself into this pickle. But it was your fault. You didn’t check. You didn’t plan. There’s no one to blame for all of this but your own stupid self. And now you’re paying the price.

You sit there, helpless, whimpering like a wounded puppy. Everyone else has left, of course, due to your earsplitting little performance. You’re utterly alone. You try, using only the force of your mind, to unroll the paper in the next stall and have it gently roll over into yours. This does not work, to your surprise. You attempt to reach underneath the partition, somehow deluding yourself into thinking that your arm has become extendible and that you can actually manage to reach it using the superhuman stretching abilities that you just now discovered. When this fails, you begin to lose all hope, cursing yourself for not having the foresight to carry a flare gun or a rescue flag with you at all times. Ultimately, you collapse into a pile of tears and self-loathing until some poor soul unwittingly enters and is forced to take pity upon your bawling soul by passing a handful of paper. You sob with thanks and immediately promise them you first-born child. It’s only fair.

So if you want to suck, fail to check the toilet paper status. You may leave the bathroom muttering murderous threats directed towards the janitorial staff for the next few days, but those precious moments spent in utter desolation and hopelessness will last a lifetime.

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