Saturday, March 13, 2010
Brother Virus, Small But Mighty
A virus (from the Latin virus meaning toxin or poison) is a small infectious agent that can replicate only inside the cells of other organisms. Viruses infect all types of organisms, from animals and plants to bacteria and archaea. There are millions of different types. Viruses are found in almost every ecosystem on Earth and these minute structures are the most abundant type of biological entity.
So there really is no contest, no point in even trying to fight it. When the nasty cold virus decides it's time to take a bite out of me, I might as well submit, right? Ahhhhh-choooo!
But even as I engage in typical down-with-a-cold behaviors: you know, drinking tea and leaving a trail of crumpled kleenexes in my wake, I always wonder WHY? Why did I catch this cold? Did the ghosts get to me in some way I was unaware of? Was it the extra-dynamic acupuncture I had this week? Did some early season allergy thing kick it into gear? The WHY ME thought form is no doubt left over from my years on the west coast where I believe it's a cultural imperative to believe that all illness happens for a reason. (Here on the east coast, we don't believe in minor illness. At the first sign of a cold, we swallow some toxic, over the counter medicine and go back to work. End of story.)
Maybe today, while it rains and the virus parties in my sinuses, I should get myself back into what I think of as the midwestern mindset, which is: when you get a cold, get in bed, watch movies, read magazines and sleep a lot.
I love the midwestern sensibility. Ahhh ... common sense! Now excuse me while I blow my nose - again!