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Diary of a Flu

Erik is out sick this week, so to commemorate his illness and rub it in a little, we're reprinting this particular column from 2005.

6:00 am - Stupid alarm clock. I really — oh jeez, I feel awful! Body aches and I think I'm going to faint. Where's the snooze button?

6:09 - Stupid alarm clock. Need to — oh no. Have the flu. Gaah, legs ache horribly. Can't even — Gaah! Room won't quit spinning.

6:10 - So freakin' cold in here. Must have fever

6:15 - Realize can't think in complete sentences. Personal pronouns and denominators dropped indiscriminately.

6:20 - Is this sign that fever is burning brain? Will I be silent witness to own mental deterioration as brain slowly parboils inside skull?

6:25 - No! That's stupid. I always hallucinate when I get the flu.

6:26 - There, see? I said "I." Not going stupid after all.

6:30 - Need to call the office and tell them not coming in.

6:45 - Did I actually call office, or just think that?

6:50 - There. Left a voice mail that I'm not coming in.

6:55 - Did I actually call office, or just think that?

7:00 - That should do it. Voice mail is so great. Inventor of voice mail should be given parade and a medal. Will organize that as soon as am well again.

7:05 - Did I actually call — oh wait, yes I did.

7:06 - This is awful. Need drugs or herbs or healer from Dark Ages with jar of leeches.

7:07 - Honey, wake up. I'm sick. Can you get me some Motrin?

7:10 - I'm so cold. It's freezing in here. And I'm out of blankets. Where's my stupid Motrin?

7:15 - Honey, I'm sick. Where's Motrin?

7:16 - What do you mean I didn't ask for Motrin?

7:17 - Never mind, I'll get it myself.

8:30 - How did I end up on floor? So cold.

1974 - Mommy, can I go play with Doug? He got a new bike and he said I could ride it.

9:30 - Still on floor. And it's freezing. And dark. Where's Motrin?

9:32 - Slowly our hero and his intrepid band made their way toward the land of Motrin. Their quest was to return the Ring to the Crack of Doom. Only way to stop horrible aching in joints.

9:35 - Think I'm in bathroom. If I could open my eyes a little further, I could tell. But that hurts my head. Ah, think I found the Motrin.

9:40 - Uh-oh. What happens if a guy takes Midol? It doesn't say anything on the stupid bottle about side effects. Should call poison control center.

9:45 - Never mind. Can't be that bad. I already feel like I'm going to die, so what's the worst that can happen?

9:50 - Have sudden urge to walk on beach with my mother and talk about personal freshness.

10:30 - How did I end up on bathroom floor? Was in bed just a few minutes ago. Feel awful. Better call office and let them — never mind. Did that already.

10:45 - Better go downstairs. Check on children.

10:50 - Wheee! Sliding down stairs face first is fun. I'll have to do that again later when I'm not so cold.

11:00 - Must be dead. Hear Mister Rogers voice calling me to other side. Wants me to be his neighbor.

11:05 - Wait. Am on living room couch. Kids watching Mister Rogers.

11:10 - If I'm so sick, how do I have the presence of mind to write all this down?

11:15 - Because I'm a writer. It's such a terrible burden to be such a creative genius. We're on all the time. Even when sick, I can still be funny.

11:20 - Two dogs walk into a bar. First one says "Ow my nose!"

11:21 - I crack myself up. Have to remember that for column.

11:30 - Oh no. Mister Rogers is over. Barely have strength to snap with him at end of show. Feel like crying whenever he says — oh goody, Teletubbies is on.

11:45 - Gaah, Teletubbies are on me! Get 'em off! Get 'em off!

11:46 - Oh wait, it's just the children.

11:47 - Kids, Daddy is sick. Can't crawl on me like that. Must stay on couch.

11:50 - Yes, I know I'm not using personal pronouns. You don't need to correct me about that, you're only four. And since when did you grow wings?

12:30 pm - Am still on living room couch. Don't know where wife is.

12:31 - Kids, where's Mommy?

12:38 - What do you mean, she's sick? She can't be sick. I need help. Tell Mommy I'm sicker.

1:00 - Ewww, you're right. She's sicker. Tell her she can clean it up when she's better.

1:30 - Do you know how to call Grandma? Good. Call Grandma and have her pick you guys up because Mommy and I are sick.

1:35 - What do you mean, Grandma got you 30 minutes ago? Then who have I been talking to?

1:40 - Gaah! Teletubbies! Teletubbies are on me!!

4:00 - I'd better call the office and tell them I'm not coming in.

The second edition of Branding Yourself: How to Use Social Media to Invent or Reinvent Yourself (affiliate link), and No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide to Social Media Marketing are both available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Books-A-Million, or for the Kindle or Nook. My latest book, The Owned Media Doctrine is now available on

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