Sunday, January 22, 2012


My entire family gathered in the greater Bay Area last weekend.  My older sister Molly and her kids, my baby sister Maggie, and even some of my cousins and their kids.  We were all together to enjoy one of those rare holiday-free collections of loved ones from three generations.  My mother had orchestrated the whole thing and I think she'd envisioned a lovely weekend that did not involve a highly contagious stomach virus, but whattayagonnado?

My mom was the first to drop followed closely by my wife and sisters.  I saw where this was going.  Naturally with two affectionate and drool-prone boys in the house (okay fine, three) steps had to be taken to curb the disease's spread.

The first thing I did in the wee hours that morning was agree, with hardly any hesitation, to feed Finn for Erin.  Yes, I'm great.  Despite this cutting into my sleep on a night when I really wanted to sleep lots, I maintained an air of levity and playfulness by calling Erin names like 'Pukey Face' and 'Mrs. Barfington'.  I then spent the morning planning menus of meals that I'd intended to vomit later.  For the most part these were comprised of yogurt and red wine.  As soon as the kids and I were dressed in enough layers to hide that we were still in our jammies we fled to the dry and relatively sterile environment of the Flying Goat Coffee House.  Something about the place makes it seems like Howard Hughes would be comfortable there.  Maybe it's the music.  Whatever it is the coffee is fantastic and Liam goes apeshit for the high protein gingerbread muffin which is by far the most vomit friendly pastry I've ever encountered.

We tried to stay away as long as possible (for Erin's benefit) but eventually had to go home.  I had the ingenious idea to spend the rest of the day distilling some high proof hooch in the garage in an effort to offset the sad state of my post-holiday booze reserve while at the same time sterilizing the air in the house with ethanol vapors. (This is of course not true since the home distillation of alcohol is illegal and I would never commit such a heinous crime)

If I had a still I think it would look like this
Erin emerged from isolation around 2 in the afternoon and I was sure to do what I could to ease her suffering.  I assured her that she was looking much better having gone from a "jaundiced zombie" to looking more "cracked-out".  She didn't visibly appreciate my support but that's okay because she had been through a lot that day.  She got comfy on the couch so I could dote on her by dabbing the buttons on the remote control with a disinfecting wipe* and feeding her foods that matched the carpet.

The good news is I didn't get sick and neither did the boys!  Success!!  In fact it seems like this virus only went after the girls.  I'm not necessarily accusing this particular stomach bug of being sexist.  Or maybe I am.  Viruses in general are dicks.  Fuck it, it was a sexist girl-hating stomach virus, and I just don't understand why us boys were spared, but I was grateful.

*Erin insisted I mention that I also tried wiping her with a disinfecting wipe.  In my defense she looked pretty gross.

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